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Iraq: The legacy of deception

20 January 2012

By Susan Lindauer

Susan LindauerMost Americans are astonished to discover that right up to 9/11, the CIA was developing a "Real Politik" vision of Iraq that recognized the fast approaching collapse of U.N. Sanctions. The CIA was preparing for Peace---with a ruthless determination that the United States would capture the lion's share of spoils from Iraqi Reconstruction contracts in any post-sanctions period.

German pilots transporting medical supplies and doctors into Baghdad International Airport at the end of the Clinton Administration had blasted the myth of invincibility surrounding sanctions. To this day, those pilots are anonymous—but they changed the equation in total. Their courage honoring the Berlin Airlifts in the Cold War was quickly copied. Across Europe and the Arab world, activists began to organize humanitarian flights into Baghdad. On the Security Council, France and Russia argued strenuously that the ban on air travel had been self imposed, and the no-fly zone could not prohibit humanitarian flights.   

By this time, UN sanctions had killed over 1.7 million Iraqis; wiped out literacy in a single generation; and created artificial starvation in the world's second most oil-rich nation. Iraq's world class hospitals that once rivaled London and New York had been ravaged.  Sick of the misery, the global community refused to stay silent any longer.

The CIA saw the writing on the wall. International loathing for "genocide by sanctions" had reached such a peak of outrage that there was no possibility of re-crafting the hated policy. Secretary of State Colin Powell's vision of "smart sanctions" had come too late.

The CIA was determined to control the agenda for the advantage of the United States, however. And so quietly through my back channel, we undertook a proactive, covert dialogue over exactly what concessions Iraq would offer the United States, in exchange for lifting the sanctions. As a long-time opponent of sanctions myself, I was eager to get results.

That dialogue—even the existence of our back channel to Iraq's Embassy at the United Nations from 1996 to 2003—was strictly covert, kept close and precious— away from Washington pundits and think tanks whose ignorance would have smashed all progress on the rocks. Our dialogue was no less vigorous for that secrecy.
This was the CIA at its best. Nobody got soft on Saddam's government. By any measure, the CIA's demands far exceeded the U.N. mandate to eliminate Iraq's WMDs. If there was going to be peace, it would have to be rock solid, with zero chance that Baghdad would bite the United States in retaliation for those years of misery and death.

A Prosperous Peace for All

What emerged was a dynamic and comprehensive framework hammered out with Iraq's Ambassador Dr. Saeed Hasan and senior diplomats in New York.

The agreement required weapons inspections "with no conditions." But the deal accomplished much more. By February, 2001—nine months before 9/11—Baghdad authorized the FBI to send Terrorism Task Force into Iraq, with permission to conduct investigations and make arrests.  After 9/11, Iraq sweetened its contribution with promises to hand over banking and financial documents on Al Qaeda figures. There's no question but that Iraq's cooperation qualified as the most substantial windfall in the War on Terrorism. Notably, it targeted actual terrorists--- not Islamic charities or frightened taxi drivers and plumbers with the wrong accents and ethnic coloring.

Every time Senator John McCain or Dick Cheney pounded the lectern on CNN, and demanded an interview with Al Anai, or other cooperation--- Iraq complied within hours.

The Peace Dividend

Most importantly, the CIA was determined that the U.S. would retain a strong footing inside Iraq in all major economic sectors, in any post sanctions period.

The CIA envisioned a great Peace Bonanza for U.S. corporations that would have gorged American workers and shareholders with billions of dollars in revenues. It was a vision of prosperity and wealth creation, which put the United States at the center of the banquet table. The CIA wanted jobs, more jobs and profits. The goal was to rival the economic impact of the reconstruction of Germany and Japan after World War II, driving as many of those economic benefits to U.S. coffers as possible.

Iraq was happy to oblige. Those were days when the United States commanded such power on the world stage that other nations recognized Washington would have to be gratified in order for a change of policy to move forward.

And so Baghdad agreed to Every Single Demand put forth by the CIA--- without complaint that U.S. conditions far exceeded the scope of the U.N. mandate for ending the sanctions.

  • The CIA demanded and won Iraq's agreement to allow all U.S. corporations to return to Baghdad, post-sanctions, at the same level of market share as before the first Gulf War in 1990.
  • Iraq promised first tier oil concessions to U.S. Oil Corporations in all new exploration and development leases, with priority contracts for the purchase of American oil equipment. Baghdad also promised the U.S. could join existing oil leases held by other countries on a second and third tier basis.
  • In January, 2003, Iraq offered the LUKoil Contract held by Russia to U.S. oil companies instead, in a final, tragic bid to avert War.
  • By December, 2001, Iraq agreed to give preferential contracts, post-sanctions, to U.S. Corporations in telecommunications
  • In fact, the CIA demanded and won Iraq's agreement to give the U.S. preferential contracts in health care, hospital equipment and pharmaceuticals.
  • Iraq agreed to buy 1 million American-manufactured automobiles every year for 10 years. This would have required imports from the U.S., not licensing of technology. That would have created thousands of high-paying Union jobs in the Rust Belt of America.

Imagine the modern day Global Economy if the CIA's vision had prevailed. There would be no bankruptcy of the Middle Class. No housing foreclosure crisis. No government stimulus packages to bail out Banks or the U.S. automobile industry. There would be No Great Depression on All Points of the Global Horizon. This bounty would have extended to Britain and all of Europe and Asia. All countries would have joined the Feast of Reconstruction in Iraq. The prosperity flowing from this Peace Bonanza would have multiplied like loaves of bread throughout the world.

Imagine better schools. Universal health coverage. Substantial new investment in green energy, mass transit and infrastructure improvements. That's what the Middle Class sacrificed in this Bonfire of the Vanities.

Republicans quickly recognized American voters would be irate over those costs. No longer fired with courage in the belly, and lacking the strength of conviction, Republicans shifted blame for their mediocre war policy onto the Intelligence Community—which had developed this peace framework— rather than take responsibility for their own decision making.

All three U.S. Assets covering the Iraqi Embassy in New York got thrown in prison as "Iraqi Agents," citing the Patriot Act. All of us faced secret charges, secret evidence and secret grand jury testimony. Myself, I spent a year locked up on Carswell Air Force Base without a trial or hearing, threatened with indefinite detention.

In a violent effort to force to me to recant, I was threatened with forcible drugging with Haldol, Ativan and Prozac. Only thanks to blowback from the blogs and internet radio was the truth that I had lived saved from a chemical lobotomy.

There's a reason why, and it bodes very badly for America. 

The Cost of War

The tragic truth is that pulling U.S. soldiers out from Iraq will not reverse those negative consequences for the U.S. economy or taxpayers. The Middle Class is down for the count and not getting up.  Our grand children will be financing this failed War in Baghdad with hefty income taxes to pay America's creditors in China for decades to come. There's serious question as to whether the War in Iraq has ended the "American Century."

The United States has hemorrhaged $4 TRILLION on the Wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, and deficits continue to escalate in Kabul. Military spending for defense contractors has increased 81 percent since the 9/11 attack, while disability and health benefits for U.S. Veterans have stagnated.

  • Over 4,000 U.S. Soldiers died in Iraq--- while another 30,000 suffered serious traumatic injuries, paralysis, amputations and head injuries.
  • An American soldier attempts suicide every 80 minutes, according to Veterans for Peace, which has demanded more community outreach to save their lives
  • Post traumatic stress cripples tens of thousands of young American soldiers who face great difficulty returning to work and family life.

For all of the glory of U.S. military budgets, we have nothing to give our young people in uniform.
And that's not all. What of that grand vision called the War on Terrorism?

Cunning like a fox, Saddam Hussein tried to give the United States banking and financial documents that would have closed down the financial pipeline feeding terrorism. Mostly that financing derives from heroin profits, which would have resulted in substantial seizures, and killed two birds with one powerful stone.

Yet for all the rhetoric, Republican leaders so desired to attack Saddam that they left all terrorism financing in circulation. There's no question but those monies have financed attacks on U.S. and allied partners in Pakistan, India, Iraq, Afghanistan, Indonesia, the Philippines—wherever radical Islam is engaged in violent retaliation against U.S. military operations.

And so the greatest irony is that the U.S. has financed our Enemies' War on Terrorism against our own people. That's just plain stupid. And dangerous.

The damage goes farther. Former CIA Director of Operations and head of the Bin Laden Unit, Michael Scheuer argues that U.S. interventions are in danger of igniting another major terrorist attack on U.S. soil. Guaranteed to outscore 9/11, the next attack will most likely involve a dirty nuclear attack on the financial district of New York City, which would push the global economy over the edge, into the abyss.
Pulling out of Iraq creates an opportunity to reduce that risk—but only if Washington learns the lessons of its past mistakes and resists the temptation to engage in new military mis-adventures.

The Weapons Trap in Iran

Indeed, as the world weighs another War against Iran, we must engage in a serious conversation as to whether any nation is worth the risk of destruction to our own?

Veterans and anti-war activists alike must force a consideration of what our economy has suffered already—since the value of human life has become so cheap. We must examine the costs of War to our economy, our taxpayers and our soldiers, with much greater clarity and honesty than Republicans in Congress applied to the War in Iraq.

Tragically, the War in Iraq has had an unexpected consequence. It has persuaded Iran of the dangers of nuclear disarmament. Baghdad would have been much less vulnerable to U.S. military adventurism, if only Saddam's government had possessed Weapons of Mass Destruction, per U.N. accusations. Baghdad's inability to mount an effective defense created an irresistible provocation for War Hawks in Washington and London.

That lesson of the Iraq War is not lost on Teheran. On that contrary, it has proved to Iranian leaders that WMDs are vital to their future independence. Only a guarantee of "mutual assured destruction" will preserve the freedom of their country.

Unquestionably, that is the greatest tragedy of all, with more dangerous consequences to come.

One must ask: Would the CIA's vision of peace been so terrible after all?

Susan Lindauer is the author of Extreme Prejudice: The Terrifying Story of the Patriot Act and the Cover Ups of 9/11 and Iraq.


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By the way, what happened to Colin powell?

By tosin on 2012 01 20 - 10:47:35

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Although I agree with many of their ideas, the forces reigned against RAM are too great, violent, statist and reactionary for them to remain a non-political, broad based, multi-ethnic, community protest group for much longer. The Left and their Antifa nihilist fellow travelers are already pushing them towards the extreme Right, by calling them racists and Islamophobes and so on. Whilst the extreme Right have aligned themselves with RAM. With fascists of the Left and Right pressuring them they will not be able to remain beyond the Left-Right divide and will inevitably move to the Right - the extreme Right. Which is already happening. A development which will alienate decent Australians of all ethnic backgrounds many of whom currently support them. 

The RAM leadership have already established open alliances with the Patriotic Front (the ape in the photograph is a Patriot Front supporter at a recent Richmond demonstration) Australia First and Golden Dawn, a Greek neo-Nazi party. Members of these collectivist groups are currently attending RAM demonstrations all over Australia.

There is a real need in Australia to establish a political movement beyond the Left-Right divide and their vested interests, a movement that questions the current direction Australia is heading i.e. the direction the Left/Right and their extremes would like to take it; that questions the efficacy of state sponsored multiculturalism, as opposed to a proper, non-discriminatory immigration policy; that questions the validity of political correctness; that is politically neutral, anti-war and pro environment; that is opposed to all collectivists ideologies (fascisms of the Left and Right); that would dismantle the power pyramids of corporations and banks and their ability to impact on government; that would dissolve all anti-terror laws and all laws that impose on the rights and freedom of the individual and the people.   

(The ape in the photograph is a Patriot Front supporter at a recent Richmond demonstration)

By Eugene Donnini on 2015 07 26 - 15:36:56
From the entry 'Dylann Roof: soldier in a new race war or just a pawn in the game?'.

Hello there I am so thrilled I found your web site, I really found you by error, while I was searching on Digg for something else, Anyways I am here now and would just like to say thanks for a incredible post and a all round thrilling blog (I also love the theme/design), I donÚčÖ have time to go through it all at the minute but I have bookmarked it and also included your RSS feeds, so when I have time I will be back to read a lot more, Please do keep up the great work.

By Prova a Adidas Neutro Originals Nizza Nero Giallo on 2015 07 20 - 08:41:30
From the entry 'Statism, the greater good and the big lie'.

I second Keith’s assertion that Mike Holt from Restore Australia is very much a fake.  He bangs on about Halaal being a scam and money maker for Islam (and no I don’t support Halaal whatsoever), but makes excuses for its counterpart Kosher as being a somehow legitimate.  Double standards?  When I confronted him about this fact he went off on a convoluted tirade about Israel being some sort of “Bastion of Democracy” in the middle east…Really!, I will leave that one up to the readers to decide on.  I found that MH came across as disingenuous to say the least.

By Citizen Scorn on 2015 07 19 - 07:33:43
From the entry 'Restore Australia!'.

Without doubt, TNR is one of the best, if not the best alternative news source on the net. Which doesn’t mean Herewood is always right. His job, I believe, is to present the facts as he sees them as an objectively as possible, without fear or favor.  For this, he has my respect and support. But I believe he needs to be careful and to think a little deeper about the problems of “racism,” in Australia. He has labelled the Reclaim Australia Movement as racist. I’m wondering if his objectivity is a little weak on this point, a little without foundation.

Of course all political movements have its fringe groups and individuals. We make a distinction between, for example, a Muslim and a fundamentalist Muslim (Islamist), and by so doing we don’t claim that all Muslims are blood thirsty fanatics. If its good for the Muslims, then its good for RAM, which is bound to attract a few lunatics and real racists. But to brand the entire movement as “racist” is wrong; it is the same ploy that is used by the mainstream media and its left-wing, establishment Marxist boot boys.

One of the first things I noticed when i attended a RAM rally recently were the amount of non-white people in attendance, including Aboriginals. In fact the main banner of RAM contains an Australian flag and an Aboriginal flag. Speakers at their rallies have included Jews, Arabs, Indians, Aboriginals, Chinese and so on. What does this tell you? Is this really a fascist-Nazi-racist movement whose stated aim are the eradication and exclusion of other cultures, in place of some sort of Aussie white Reich, or is this just propaganda that is being propagated by the left for their own political interests. Consequently, we all know where the culmination of their politics have led, historically speaking, which are to the imposition of terror and dictatorships.

We can be thankful for small mercies, in terms of the Left, which today mostly tends to attract collectivists, establishmentarians and the privileged sons and daughters of the upper bourgeoisie, who seems to share one thing in common, nativity….

By Eugene on 2015 07 18 - 16:03:54
From the entry 'Dylann Roof: soldier in a new race war or just a pawn in the game?'.

Mike Holt from Restore Australia is very much a fake.  He hasn’t even been citizen for but a few years.  But, he makes out like he was born there.  ALSO - this guy spent 30 years in Thailand working shady businesses.  I would wager that his primary purpose in being an activist is that he wants to make money off selling merchandise.

By Keith on 2015 07 17 - 20:51:15
From the entry 'Restore Australia!'.

good to see you putting out some new shows heraward

freely the banana girl is to a certain extent a troll, as is her boyfriend durian rider. they have been trolling the fitness community on youtube for some time… and yes they are extreme but they are also trolls. They use their trolling to spread their message. currently, another dude called vegangains is trolling the fitness community as well.

i am a vegetarian, and it was seeing this documentary on the pork industry that started me on the vegetarian path. for anyone interested, its pretty off the charts disturbing and its australian as well. its pretty much made by dudes breaking into pork farms and filming what they find

Would the world be better if people cared where their food came from? probably, they might then care about other things too

do you become a better person if you dont eat meat? i feel like a better person mainly because animals aren’t being hurt because of me. i dont feel humans have to eat meat really… or at least not much. How can you watch that documentary on pork, know that that is pretty much whats going on and turn a blind eye to it? I think its basic empathy and just saying well ‘i like bacon so yeah’ is in my opinion wrong and i can see freleys point of view to an extent. In my opinion, at least these people believe in something. i see my money as my vote, henceforth im ethical as to what i do with it. free range eggs became mainstream for exactly this reason… although im pretty sure woolies and coles lobbied the state to change the definition of the word ‘free range’ at some point. I dont eat beef because the amount of resources that go into growing a cow are pretty crazy. Think about how much grass that cow needs to eat before it is harvested and how much space it requires. think of how many vegies you could grow in the same space with the same amount of water. lamb? comon, think about what your doing here… but that being said i think most vegans are total loons. People like freeley should be advocating for the destruction of lions and tigers, as lions and tigers murder other animals in truly horrific style. if we humans are smart enough to not harm animals, then we should be stopping the animals that harm other animals from existing. Freeley also kills birds when she flies in aeroplanes so she is a hypocrite.

feminism is one of the biggest problems in society today and although there is some valid historical basis to it, the liberation of the human female from their biology is in my opinion largely a product of the technological advance of humans. sufferagettes where never machine gunned on the streets, unlike the men that where drafted and sent off to war to die just a few years earlier. as technology has advanced, women have advanced as well, however now its going way too far and is pretty blatantly anti male in many respects. i view feminism in its modern context as a tool of the social marxists that really isnt doing society a great deal of good at this time. its screwing up gender dynamics and is wrecking women and men for each other. i see it as low frequency, lowest common denominator idiocy, just like a lot of the the race baiting ‘is this racist’ stuff getting around that is being perpetuated pretty much as a distraction, divide and conquer strategy by the power elite. idiots love this kind of bicker and beef… it would be funny if it wasn’t so serious


I agree with steven friar. gods a maniac

good show… keep making them

By r0Kb3B0p on 2015 07 14 - 21:05:32
From the entry 'Addictions, obsessions, fanaticisms and distractions'.

Really truthfull.

By OZE on 2015 07 07 - 16:56:36
From the entry 'Defending your personal health choices'.

Yeah sure authority aware.

By OZE on 2015 07 07 - 16:28:55
From the entry 'What is the future of Australia?'.

Stay tuned for more rules here as usually is the case!!!

By OZE on 2015 07 07 - 16:21:50
From the entry 'Mass media disinformation and brainwashing dissected'.

Almost two months since the last broadcast! How the hell can you expect people to donate when you don’t broadcast? Looks like the ship of truth has sprung a leak. This broadcast has been part of my life almost since its inception…it is one of the few alternative news sources that hasn’t gone off the deep end, by dilution credible information with crap e.g. Fairdinkum Radio and Info Wars…Pittard started FR with some incredibly interesting material, but then he flipped…Today he sounds like a fundamentalist preacher, the Christian equivalent to a Fanatical Islamist. As an atheist, I think he’s really ###### up a potentially good show. As for Info Wars, all they would have to do to improve is dump Alex Jones, what a shit-for-brains. I reckon Jones and Pittard are allowed to proliferate, because they’re so stupid and harmless. I suppose they have some entertainment value, and along with David Icke are living examples of how low the alternative media has sunk. Truth News Radio is, or should I say was, way ahead of them all ahead of them all in terms of credibility How sad that its come to this.

By Eugene on 2015 06 28 - 17:28:56
From the entry 'Introducing Mark Zuckerberg's free 'private' internet which will soon be rolled out to 4 billion+ people'.