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The Decline And Fall Of The American Empire In The 21st Century

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December 12, 2010: Alfred W. McCoy / TomDispatch via The Nation – December 6, 2010

America is being destroyed by deliberate design! – SJH

A soft landing for America 40 years from now?  Don’t bet on it.  The demise of the United States as the global superpower could come far more quickly than anyone imagines.  If Washington is dreaming of 2040 or 2050 as the end of the American Century, a more realistic assessment of domestic and global trends suggests that in 2025, just 15 years from now, it could all be over except for the shouting.

Despite the aura of omnipotence most empires project, a look at their history should remind us that they are fragile organisms. So delicate is their ecology of power that, when things start to go truly bad, empires regularly unravel with unholy speed: just a year for Portugal, two years for the Soviet Union, eight years for France, 11 years for the Ottomans, 17 years for Great Britain, and, in all likelihood, 22 years for the United States, counting from the crucial year 2003.

Future historians are likely to identify the Bush administration’s rash invasion of Iraq in that year as the start of America’s downfall. However, instead of the bloodshed that marked the end of so many past empires, with cities burning and civilians slaughtered, this twenty-first century imperial collapse could come relatively quietly through the invisible tendrils of economic collapse or cyberwarfare.

But have no doubt: when Washington’s global dominion finally ends, there will be painful daily reminders of what such a loss of power means for Americans in every walk of life. As a half-dozen European nations have discovered, imperial decline tends to have a remarkably demoralizing impact on a society, regularly bringing at least a generation of economic privation. As the economy cools, political temperatures rise, often sparking serious domestic unrest.

Available economic, educational, and military data indicate that, when it comes to US global power, negative trends will aggregate rapidly by 2020 and are likely to reach a critical mass no later than 2030. The American Century, proclaimed so triumphantly at the start of World War II, will be tattered and fading by 2025, its eighth decade, and could be history by 2030.

Significantly, in 2008, the US National Intelligence Council admitted for the first time that America’s global power was indeed on a declining trajectory. In one of its periodic futuristic reports, Global Trends 2025, the Council cited “the transfer of global wealth and economic power now under way, roughly from West to East” and “without precedent in modern history,” as the primary factor in the decline of the “United States’ relative strength—even in the military realm.” Like many in Washington, however, the Council’s analysts anticipated a very long, very soft landing for American global preeminence, and harbored the hope that somehow the US would long “retain unique military capabilities… to project military power globally” for decades to come.

No such luck.  Under current projections, the United States will find itself in second place behind China (already the world’s second largest economy) in economic output around 2026, and behind India by 2050. Similarly, Chinese innovation is on a trajectory toward world leadership in applied science and military technology sometime between 2020 and 2030, just as America’s current supply of brilliant scientists and engineers retires, without adequate replacement by an ill-educated younger generation.

By 2020, according to current plans, the Pentagon will throw a military Hail Mary pass for a dying empire.  It will launch a lethal triple canopy of advanced aerospace robotics that represents Washington’s last best hope of retaining global power despite its waning economic influence. By that year, however, China’s global network of communications satellites, backed by the world’s most powerful supercomputers, will also be fully operational, providing Beijing with an independent platform for the weaponization of space and a powerful communications system for missile- or cyber-strikes into every quadrant of the globe.

Wrapped in imperial hubris, like Whitehall or Quai d’Orsay before it, the White House still seems to imagine that American decline will be gradual, gentle, and partial. In his State of the Union address last January, President Obama offered the reassurance that “I do not accept second place for the United States of America.” A few days later, Vice President Biden ridiculed the very idea that “we are destined to fulfill [historian Paul] Kennedy’s prophecy that we are going to be a great nation that has failed because we lost control of our economy and overextended.” Similarly, writing in the November issue of the establishment journal Foreign Affairs, neo-liberal foreign policy guru Joseph Nye waved away talk of China’s economic and military rise, dismissing “misleading metaphors of organic decline” and denying that any deterioration in US global power was underway.

Ordinary Americans, watching their jobs head overseas, have a more realistic view than their cosseted leaders. An opinion poll in August 2010 found that 65% of Americans believed the country was now “in a state of decline.”  Already, Australia and Turkey, traditional US military allies, are using their American-manufactured weapons for joint air and naval maneuvers with China. Already, America’s closest economic partners are backing away from Washington’s opposition to China’s rigged currency rates. As the president flew back from his Asian tour last month, a gloomy New York Times headline  summed the moment up this way: “Obama’s Economic View Is Rejected on World Stage, China, Britain and Germany Challenge US, Trade Talks With Seoul Fail, Too.”

Viewed historically, the question is not whether the United States will lose its unchallenged global power, but just how precipitous and wrenching the decline will be. In place of Washington’s wishful thinking, let’s use the National Intelligence Council’s own futuristic methodology to suggest four realistic scenarios for how, whether with a bang or a whimper, US global power could reach its end in the 2020s (along with four accompanying assessments of just where we are today).  The future scenarios include: economic decline, oil shock, military misadventure, and World War III.  While these are hardly the only possibilities when it comes to American decline or even collapse, they offer a window into an onrushing future.

Economic Decline: Present Situation

Today, three main threats exist to America’s dominant position in the global economy: loss of economic clout thanks to a shrinking share of world trade, the decline of American technological innovation, and the end of the dollar’s privileged status as the global reserve currency.

By 2008, the United States had already fallen to number three in global merchandise exports, with just 11% of them compared to 12% for China and 16% for the European Union.  There is no reason to believe that this trend will reverse itself.

Similarly, American leadership in technological innovation is on the wane. In 2008, the US was still number two behind Japan in worldwide patent applications with 232,000, but China was closing fast at 195,000, thanks to a blistering 400% increase since 2000.  A harbinger of further decline: in 2009 the US hit rock bottom in ranking among the 40 nations surveyed by the Information Technology & Innovation Foundation when it came to “change” in “global innovation-based competitiveness” during the previous decade.  Adding substance to these statistics, in October China’s Defense Ministry unveiled the world’s fastest supercomputer, the Tianhe-1A, so powerful, said one US expert, that it “blows away the existing No. 1 machine” in America.

Add to this clear evidence that the US education system, that source of future scientists and innovators, has been falling behind its competitors. After leading the world for decades in 25- to 34-year-olds with university degrees, the country sank to 12th place in 2010.  The World Economic Forum ranked the United States at a mediocre 52nd among 139 nations in the quality of its university math and science instruction in 2010. Nearly half of all graduate students in the sciences in the US are now foreigners, most of whom will be heading home, not staying here as once would have happened.  By 2025, in other words, the United States is likely to face a critical shortage of talented scientists.

Such negative trends are encouraging increasingly sharp criticism of the dollar’s role as the world’s reserve currency. “Other countries are no longer willing to buy into the idea that the US knows best on economic policy,” observed Kenneth S. Rogoff, a former chief economist at the International Monetary Fund. In mid-2009, with the world’s central banks holding an astronomical $4 trillion in US Treasury notes, Russian president Dimitri Medvedev insisted that it was time to end “the artificially maintained unipolar system” based on “one formerly strong reserve currency.”

Simultaneously, China’s central bank governor suggested that the future might lie with a global reserve currency “disconnected from individual nations” (that is, the US dollar). Take these as signposts of a world to come, and of a possible attempt, as economist Michael Hudson has argued, “to hasten the bankruptcy of the US financial-military world order.”

Economic Decline: Scenario 2020

After years of swelling deficits fed by incessant warfare in distant lands, in 2020, as long expected, the US dollar finally loses its special status as the world’s reserve currency.  Suddenly, the cost of imports soars. Unable to pay for swelling deficits by selling now-devalued Treasury notes abroad, Washington is finally forced to slash its bloated military budget.  Under pressure at home and abroad, Washington slowly pulls US forces back from hundreds of overseas bases to a continental perimeter.  By now, however, it is far too late.

Faced with a fading superpower incapable of paying the bills, China, India, Iran, Russia, and other powers, great and regional, provocatively challenge US  dominion over the oceans, space, and cyberspace.  Meanwhile, amid soaring prices, ever-rising unemployment, and a continuing decline in real wages, domestic divisions widen into violent clashes and divisive debates, often over remarkably irrelevant issues. Riding a political tide of disillusionment and despair, a far-right patriot captures the presidency with thundering rhetoric, demanding respect for American authority and threatening military retaliation or economic reprisal. The world pays next to no attention as the American Century ends in silence.

Oil Shock: Present Situation

One casualty of America’s waning economic power has been its lock on global oil supplies. Speeding by America’s gas-guzzling economy in the passing lane, China became the world’s number one energy consumer this summer, a position the US had held for over a century.  Energy specialist Michael Klare has argued that this change means China will “set the pace in shaping our global future.”

By 2025, Iran and Russia will control almost half of the world’s natural gas supply, which will potentially give them enormous leverage over energy-starved Europe. Add petroleum reserves to the mix and, as the National Intelligence Council has warned, in just 15 years two countries, Russia and Iran, could “emerge as energy kingpins.”

Despite remarkable ingenuity, the major oil powers are now draining the big basins of petroleum reserves that are amenable to easy, cheap extraction. The real lesson of the Deepwater Horizon oil disaster in the Gulf of Mexico was not BP’s sloppy safety standards, but the simple fact everyone saw on “spillcam”: one of the corporate energy giants had little choice but to search for what Klare calls “tough oil” miles beneath the surface of the ocean to keep its profits up.

Compounding the problem, the Chinese and Indians have suddenly become far heavier energy consumers. Even if fossil fuel supplies were to remain constant (which they won’t), demand, and so costs, are almost certain to rise—and sharply at that.  Other developed nations are meeting this threat aggressively by plunging into experimental programs to develop alternative energy sources.  The United States has taken a different path, doing far too little to develop alternative sources while, in the last three decades, doubling its dependence on foreign oil imports.  Between 1973 and 2007, oil imports have risen from 36% of energy consumed in the US to 66%.

Oil Shock: Scenario 2025

The United States remains so dependent upon foreign oil that a few adverse developments in the global energy market in 2025 spark an oil shock.  By comparison, it makes the 1973 oil shock (when prices quadrupled in just months) look like the proverbial molehill.  Angered at the dollar’s plummeting value, OPEC oil ministers, meeting in Riyadh, demand future energy payments in a “basket” of Yen, Yuan, and Euros.  That only hikes the cost of US oil imports further.  At the same moment, while signing a new series of long-term delivery contracts with China, the Saudis stabilize their own foreign exchange reserves by switching to the Yuan.  Meanwhile, China pours countless billions into building a massive trans-Asia pipeline and funding Iran’s exploitation of the world largest natural gas field at South Pars in the Persian Gulf.

Concerned that the US Navy might no longer be able to protect the oil tankers traveling from the Persian Gulf to fuel East Asia, a coalition of Tehran, Riyadh, and Abu Dhabi form an unexpected new Gulf alliance and affirm that China’s new fleet of swift aircraft carriers will henceforth patrol the Persian Gulf from a base on the Gulf of Oman.  Under heavy economic pressure, London agrees to cancel the US lease on its Indian Ocean island base of Diego Garcia, while Canberra, pressured by the Chinese, informs Washington that the Seventh Fleet is no longer welcome to use Fremantle as a homeport, effectively evicting the US Navy from the Indian Ocean.

With just a few strokes of the pen and some terse announcements,  the “Carter Doctrine,” by which US military power was to eternally protect the Persian Gulf, is laid to rest in 2025.  All the elements that long assured the United States limitless supplies of low-cost oil from that region—logistics, exchange rates, and naval power—evaporate. At this point, the US can still cover only an insignificant 12% of its energy needs from its nascent alternative energy industry, and remains dependent on imported oil for half of its energy consumption.

The oil shock that follows hits the country like a hurricane, sending prices to startling heights, making travel a staggeringly expensive proposition, putting real wages (which had long been declining) into freefall, and rendering non-competitive whatever American exports remained. With thermostats dropping, gas prices climbing through the roof, and dollars flowing overseas in return for costly oil, the American economy is paralyzed. With long-fraying alliances at an end and fiscal pressures mounting, US military forces finally begin a staged withdrawal from their overseas bases.

Within a few years, the US is functionally bankrupt and the clock is ticking toward midnight on the American Century.

Military Misadventure: Present Situation

Counterintuitively, as their power wanes, empires often plunge into ill-advised military misadventures.  This phenomenon is known among historians of empire as “micro-militarism” and seems to involve psychologically compensatory efforts to salve the sting of retreat or defeat by occupying new territories, however briefly and catastrophically. These operations, irrational even from an imperial point of view, often yield hemorrhaging expenditures or humiliating defeats that only accelerate the loss of power.

Embattled empires through the ages suffer an arrogance that drives them to plunge ever deeper into military misadventures until defeat becomes debacle. In 413 BCE, a weakened Athens sent 200 ships to be slaughtered in Sicily. In 1921, a dying imperial Spain dispatched 20,000 soldiers to be massacred by Berber guerrillas in Morocco. In 1956, a fading British Empire destroyed its prestige by attacking Suez. And in 2001 and 2003, the US occupied Afghanistan and invaded Iraq. With the hubris that marks empires over the millennia, Washington has increased its troops in Afghanistan to 100,000, expanded the war into Pakistan, and extended its commitment to 2014 and beyond, courting disasters large and small in this guerilla-infested, nuclear-armed graveyard of empires.

Military Misadventure: Scenario 2014

So irrational, so unpredictable is “micro-militarism” that seemingly fanciful scenarios are soon outdone by actual events. With the US military stretched thin from Somalia to the Philippines and tensions rising in Israel, Iran, and Korea, possible combinations for a disastrous military crisis abroad are multifold.

It’s mid-summer 2014 and a drawn-down US garrison in embattled Kandahar in southern Afghanistan is suddenly, unexpectedly overrun by Taliban guerrillas, while US aircraft are grounded by a blinding sandstorm. Heavy loses are taken and in retaliation, an embarrassed American war commander looses B-1 bombers and F-16 fighters to demolish whole neighborhoods of the city that are believed to be under Taliban control, while AC-130U “Spooky” gunships rake the rubble with devastating cannon fire.

Soon, mullahs are preaching jihad from mosques throughout the region, and Afghan Army units, long trained by American forces to turn the tide of the war, begin to desert en masse.  Taliban fighters then launch a series of remarkably sophisticated strikes aimed at US garrisons across the country, sending American casualties soaring. In scenes reminiscent of Saigon in 1975, US helicopters rescue American soldiers and civilians from rooftops in Kabul and Kandahar.

Meanwhile, angry at the endless, decades-long stalemate over Palestine, OPEC’s leaders impose a new oil embargo on the US to protest its backing of Israel as well as the killing of untold numbers of Muslim civilians in its ongoing wars across the Greater Middle East. With gas prices soaring and refineries running dry, Washington makes its move, sending in Special Operations forces to seize oil ports in the Persian Gulf.  This, in turn, sparks a rash of suicide attacks and the sabotage of pipelines and oil wells. As black clouds billow skyward and diplomats rise at the UN to bitterly denounce American actions, commentators worldwide reach back into history to brand this “America’s Suez,” a telling reference to the 1956 debacle that marked the end of the British Empire.

World War III: Present Situation

In the summer of 2010, military tensions between the US and China began to rise in the western Pacific, once considered an American “lake.”  Even a year earlier no one would have predicted such a development. As Washington played upon its alliance with London to appropriate much of Britain’s global power after World War II, so China is now using the profits from its export trade with the US to fund what is likely to become a military challenge to American dominion over the waterways of Asia and the Pacific.

With its growing resources, Beijing is claiming a vast maritime arc from Korea to Indonesia long dominated by the US Navy. In August, after Washington expressed a “national interest” in the South China Sea and conducted naval exercises there to reinforce that claim, Beijing’s official Global Times responded angrily, saying, “The US-China wrestling match over the South China Sea issue has raised the stakes in deciding who the real future ruler of the planet will be.”

Amid growing tensions, the Pentagon reported that Beijing now holds “the capability to attack… [US] aircraft carriers in the western Pacific Ocean” and target “nuclear forces throughout… the continental United States.” By developing “offensive nuclear, space, and cyberwarfare capabilities,” China seems determined to vie for dominance of what the Pentagon calls “the information spectrum in all dimensions of the modern battlespace.” With ongoing development of the powerful Long March V booster rocket, as well as the launch of two satellites in January 2010 and another in July, for a total of five, Beijing signaled that the country was making rapid strides toward an “independent” network of 35 satellites for global positioning, communications, and reconnaissance capabilities by 2020.

To check China and extend its military position globally, Washington is intent on building a new digital network of air and space robotics, advanced cyberwarfare capabilities, and electronic surveillance.  Military planners expect this integrated system to envelop the Earth in a cyber-grid capable of blinding entire armies on the battlefield or taking out a single terrorist in field or favela. By 2020, if all goes according to plan, the Pentagon will launch a three-tiered shield of space drones—reaching from stratosphere to exosphere, armed with agile missiles, linked by a resilient modular satellite system, and operated through total telescopic surveillance.

Last April, the Pentagon made history.  It extended drone operations into the exosphere by quietly launching the X-37B unmanned space shuttle into a low orbit 255 miles above the planet.  The X-37B is the first in a new generation of unmanned vehicles that will mark the full weaponization of space, creating an arena for future warfare unlike anything that has gone before.

World War III: Scenario 2025

The technology of space and cyberwarfare is so new and untested that even the most outlandish scenarios may soon be superseded by a reality still hard to conceive. If we simply employ the sort of scenarios that the Air Force itself used in its 2009 Future Capabilities Game, however, we can gain “a better understanding of how air, space and cyberspace overlap in warfare,” and so begin to imagine how the next world war might actually be fought.

It’s 11:59 p.m. on Thanksgiving Thursday in 2025. While cyber-shoppers pound the portals of Best Buy for deep discounts on the latest home electronics from China, US Air Force technicians at the Space Surveillance Telescope (SST) on Maui choke on their coffee as their panoramic screens suddenly blip to black. Thousands of miles away at the US CyberCommand’s operations center in Texas, cyberwarriors soon detect malicious binaries that, though fired anonymously, show the distinctive digital fingerprints of China’s People’s Liberation Army.

The first overt strike is one nobody predicted. Chinese “malware” seizes control of the robotics aboard an unmanned solar-powered US “Vulture” drone as it flies at 70,000 feet over the Tsushima Strait between Korea and Japan.  It suddenly fires all the rocket pods beneath its enormous 400-foot wingspan, sending dozens of lethal missiles plunging harmlessly into the Yellow Sea, effectively disarming this formidable weapon.

Determined to fight fire with fire, the White House authorizes a retaliatory strike.  Confident that its F-6 “Fractionated, Free-Flying” satellite system is impenetrable, Air Force commanders in California transmit robotic codes to the flotilla of X-37B space drones orbiting 250 miles above the Earth, ordering them to launch their “Triple Terminator” missiles at China’s 35 satellites. Zero response. In near panic, the Air Force launches its Falcon Hypersonic Cruise Vehicle into an arc 100 miles above the Pacific Ocean and then, just 20 minutes later, sends the computer codes to fire missiles at seven Chinese satellites in nearby orbits.  The launch codes are suddenly inoperative.

As the Chinese virus spreads uncontrollably through the F-6 satellite architecture, while those second-rate US supercomputers fail to crack the malware’s devilishly complex code, GPS signals crucial to the navigation of US ships and aircraft worldwide are compromised. Carrier fleets begin steaming in circles in the mid-Pacific. Fighter squadrons are grounded. Reaper drones fly aimlessly toward the horizon, crashing when their fuel is exhausted. Suddenly, the United States loses what the US Air Force has long called “the ultimate high ground”: space. Within hours, the military power that had dominated the globe for nearly a century has been defeated in World War III without a single human casualty.

A New World Order?

Even if future events prove duller than these four scenarios suggest, every significant trend points toward a far more striking decline in American global power by 2025 than anything Washington now seems to be envisioning.

As allies worldwide begin to realign their policies to take cognizance of rising Asian powers, the cost of maintaining 800 or more overseas military bases will simply become unsustainable, finally forcing a staged withdrawal on a still-unwilling Washington. With both the US and China in a race to weaponize space and cyberspace, tensions between the two powers are bound to rise, making military conflict by 2025 at least feasible, if hardly guaranteed.

Complicating matters even more, the economic, military, and technological trends outlined above will not operate in tidy isolation. As happened to European empires after World War II, such negative forces will undoubtedly prove synergistic.  They will combine in thoroughly unexpected ways, create crises for which Americans are remarkably unprepared, and threaten to spin the economy into a sudden downward spiral, consigning this country to a generation or more of economic misery.

As US power recedes, the past offers a spectrum of possibilities for a future world order.  At one end of this spectrum, the rise of a new global superpower, however unlikely, cannot be ruled out. Yet both China and Russia evince self-referential cultures, recondite non-roman scripts, regional defense strategies, and underdeveloped legal systems, denying them key instruments for global dominion. At the moment then, no single superpower seems to be on the horizon likely to succeed the US.

In a dark, dystopian version of our global future, a coalition of transnational corporations, multilateral forces like NATO, and an international financial elite could conceivably forge a single, possibly unstable, supra-national nexus that would make it no longer meaningful to speak of national empires at all.  While denationalized corporations and multinational elites would assumedly rule such a world from secure urban enclaves, the multitudes would be relegated to urban and rural wastelands.

In Planet of Slums, Mike Davis offers at least a partial vision of such a world from the bottom up.  He argues that the billion people already packed into fetid favela-style slums worldwide (rising to two billion by 2030) will make “the ‘feral, failed cities’ of the Third World… the distinctive battlespace of the twenty-first century.” As darkness settles over some future super-favela, “the empire can deploy Orwellian technologies of repression” as “hornet-like helicopter gun-ships stalk enigmatic enemies in the narrow streets of the slum districts… Every morning the slums reply with suicide bombers and eloquent explosions.”

At a midpoint on the spectrum of possible futures, a new global oligopoly might emerge between 2020 and 2040, with rising powers China, Russia, India, and Brazil collaborating with receding powers like Britain, Germany, Japan, and the United States to enforce an ad hoc global dominion, akin to the loose alliance of European empires that ruled half of humanity circa 1900.

Another possibility: the rise of regional hegemons in a return to something reminiscent of the international system that operated before modern empires took shape. In this neo-Westphalian world order, with its endless vistas of micro-violence and unchecked exploitation, each hegemon would dominate its immediate region—Brasilia in South America, Washington in North America, Pretoria in southern Africa, and so on. Space, cyberspace, and the maritime deeps, removed from the control of the former planetary “policeman,” the United States, might even become a new global commons, controlled through an expanded UN Security Council or some ad hoc body.

All of these scenarios extrapolate existing trends into the future on the assumption that Americans, blinded by the arrogance of decades of historically unparalleled power, cannot or will not take steps to manage the unchecked erosion of their global position.

If America’s decline is in fact on a 22-year trajectory from 2003 to 2025, then we have already frittered away most of the first decade of that decline with wars that distracted us from long-term problems and, like water tossed onto desert sands, wasted trillions of desperately needed dollars.

If only 15 years remain, the odds of frittering them all away still remain high.  Congress and the president are now in gridlock; the American system is flooded with corporate money meant to jam up the works; and there is little suggestion that any issues of significance, including our wars, our bloated national security state, our starved education system, and our antiquated energy supplies, will be addressed with sufficient seriousness to assure the sort of soft landing that might maximize our country’s role and prosperity in a changing world.

Europe’s empires are gone and America’s imperium is going.  It seems increasingly doubtful that the United States will have anything like Britain’s success in shaping a succeeding world order that protects its interests, preserves its prosperity, and bears the imprint of its best values.

Nineteen Eighty-Four by George Orwell – (1954 BBC full version)

The Tonka Report Editor’s Note: Only a mobilized and well-educated American public will stand even a whisper of a chance to stop the dystopian world pre-designed by the Zionist elites– SJH   

Link to original article below…

http://www.thenation.com/article/156851/decline-and-fall-american-empire

TSA Policies Will Be Reviewed After ‘Pat Down’ Of Indian Diplomat

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December 10, 2010: Paul Joseph Watson / Prison Planet.com – December 10, 2010

Is this what it takes to stop this disgusting crime? – SJH

“Livid” Ambassador to the United States vowed never to return to America after being confined to a glass cage and groped.

A humiliating TSA pat down that left Indian Ambassador to the United States livid and insistent that she would never return to America has prompted Secretary of State Hillary Clinton to promise a review of TSA policies in the aftermath of a nationwide revolt against invasive airport security measures.

At the height of the TSA backlash last month, Clinton herself told CBS News that the pat down procedures were so invasive that she would personally want to avoid them.

Now she has been forced to promise an inquiry into measures that led to Indian diplomat Meera Shankar being confined to a glass cage before being invasively groped by TSA staff in full public view, after Indian authorities demanded an apology for her treatment. “We obviously are concerned about it,” Clinton told reporters in Washington.

“Although the matter had not been raised when she met with Shankar on Tuesday, she said, “certainly we will be looking into it and not only responding to the Indian foreign minister but also reviewing the policies,” reports CNS News.

As we reported yesterday, eyewitnesses described Shankar’s fury at being humiliated after she specifically asked for the search to be conducted in private. Shankar later reportedly said she was “livid” and refused to ever return to America, a strong statement for someone who is India’s Ambassador to the United States.

Shankar was about to board a flight to Baltimore after attending an event at Mississippi State University. “She is a very strong woman, but you could see in her face that she was humiliated,” Tan Tsai, a research associate at MSU’s International Security Studies center who witnessed the screening, told The Clarion-Ledger. “The Indian culture is very modest.”

“The way they pat them down, it was so humiliating,” Tsai added, “Anybody who passed by could see it.” Janos Radvanyi, Chair of the MSU’s International Studies Department was quoted as saying, “She said, ‘I will never come back here.’ We are sending her a letter of apology,”

As a result of the massive and sustained backlash against invasive airport security measures that are tantamount to sexual molestation, TSA chief John Pistole stated on several occasions that the pat down procedures would be investigated and probably amended. However, with more cases of TSA abuse pouring in on a daily basis, there is no indication that any changes to the policy are imminent.

The TSA has still failed to respond to a FOIA request filed by former Congressman Bob Barr’s Liberty Guard organization, which seeks to clarify why the agency relaxed the pat down procedures and restricted use of naked body scanners over the Thanksgiving holiday period, in what many charge was a blatant and hypocritical ploy to diffuse the effectiveness of a national opt out day protest.

Indian Envoy’s Pat-Down Search “Unacceptable To India”

The Tonka Report Editor’s Note: Let me point out here that it takes an Indian Ambassador to raise the eyebrows of the US government. Meanwhile, screw the US citizens. That’s your government today! – SJH

Link to original article below…

http://www.prisonplanet.com/clinton-tsa-policies-to-be-reviewed-after-humiliating-pat-down-of-indian-diplomat.html

Korea: US Builds Asian-Military Alliance Against China And Russia

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December 4, 2010: Rick Rozoff / Global Research – December 3, 2010

On December 1 the U.S. and its South Korean military ally completed four days of naval maneuvers in the Yellow Sea where China claims a 200-mile exclusive economic zone.

The U.S. dispatched the 97,000-ton USS George Washington nuclear-powered aircraft supercarrier for the exercise, accompanied by a carrier strike group consisting of a guided missile cruiser and three guided missile destroyers. The American deployment included 6,000 sailors and 75 aircraft. South Korea supplied destroyers, corvettes, frigates, support ships, anti-submarine aircraft and an undisclosed amount of military personnel.

The war games, which included live-fire shooting and bombing drills, were the latest in a series of U.S.-led military exercises in South Korea and the seas to its east and west beginning in July of this year:

From July 25-28 the U.S. conducted a joint military exercise with South Korea codenamed Invincible Spirit in the Sea of Japan/East Sea with the involvement of 20 warships including the USS George Washington supercarrier, 200 warplanes including F-22 Raptor stealth fighters and 8,000 troops.

In August the U.S. and South Korea conducted this year’s Ulchi Freedom Guardian military exercise, the world’s largest command and control simulation drill, in the latter country with 30,000 U.S. and 56,000 South Korean troops participating.

In early September Washington and Seoul held an anti-submarine warfare exercise in the Yellow Sea with two U.S. guided missile destroyers and a fast attack submarine and two South Korean destroyers. Only the August exercise was a routine one, the latest in a series of Ulchi Freedom Guardian maneuvers held over several decades.

On the day the most recent military exercise ended, December 1, it was announced that the U.S. and South Korea will hold another military exercise this month. [1] The following day “South Korea…readied plans for more live-fire drills as a warning to North Korea and scheduled talks with the United States and Japan on dealing with [North Korea]….” [2] The armed forces of the Republic of Korea will begin five days of artillery drills on December 6 in 29 locations, including on border islands in the Yellow Sea.

On the same day Secretary of State Hillary Clinton will meet with the foreign ministers of South Korea and Japan in Washington, D.C., in a rebuff to China and Russia, which are partners in the six-party talks – along with the U.S., Japan, South Korea and North Korea – that have been held since 2003 after North Korea withdrew from the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty. This despite China calling for an emergency meeting of representatives to the six-nation negotiations and winning North Korea’s agreement to rejoin the long-stalled process. On December 2 Russia announced it was ready to participate in emergency talks with the six-country group.

Just as Russia and China were excluded from the U.S.-led investigation of the Cheonan sinking earlier this year, so now they are being brushed aside in favor of a confrontational U.S.-Japan-South Korea initiative.

Two days after the American-led naval exercise in the Yellow Sea concluded, the U.S. began a week-long exercise with Japan off the second nation’s islands near the South Korean coast. The war games, Keen Sword 2011, involve 60 warships, 400 aircraft and 44,000 troops and are the largest-ever joint U.S.-Japan military drills. Kyodo News disclosed that “The maneuvers will be carried out to practice for guarding against ballistic missile attacks and for defending remote Japanese islands,” the latter an allusion to a Chinese-Japanese territorial dispute in the East China Sea. Standard Missile-3 interceptors on U.S. and Japanese Aegis class destroyers deployed in the Sea of Japan and Patriot Advanced Capability-3 anti-ballistic missiles currently stationed at bases from the north to the south of Japan, Hokkaido to Okinawa, will be employed.

In the words of an Air Force major assigned to U.S. Forces Japan headquarters: “There’s going to be naval operations, air operations, land – pretty much the full spectrum of military activities. There is going to be a lot of flying, some movement involving the aircraft carrier George Washington.” [3]

South Korea’s military has been invited to attend the exercise as an observer, as Australian, British and French officers were on board USS George Washington for the exercise in the Yellow Sea that ended two days ago. In the words of Australian Minister Stephen Smith, “We had an official on board the USS George Washington as essentially a show of support.” [4] Japanese military personnel observed the Invincible Spirit naval exercise in the Sea of Japan in July.

As a recent Russian commentary characterized the now constant American military activity in East Asia – exemplified by the deployment of the George Washington supercarrier in waters off China’s and Russia’s coasts and island possessions in the Sea of Japan in July, in the South China Sea in August, in the Yellow Sea in November and at the confluence of the Sea of Japan and East China Sea this month – “the Pentagon [is] flexing its muscles against both North Korea and China.” [5]

And not only in respect to conventional forces. On November 22 South Korean Defense Minister Kim Tae-young responded to a question by one of his nation’s members of parliament on “whether the government intends to consider the redeployment of US tactical nuclear weapons in South Korea…in the affirmative.” [6]

Although the sinking of a South Korean corvette, Cheonan, in March has been used in the intervening nine months as the rationale for U.S.-led war games in the seas of East Asia, that incident in no manner accounts for joint American-Vietnamese naval drills in the South China Sea in August, visits to Australia and nine other Asia-Pacific nations by President Barack Obama, Secretary of Defense Robert Gates, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and chairman of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff Admiral Michael Mullen early last month [7], and the overall diplomatic offensive and military maneuvers Washington is intensifying in the region with each passing day.

Three months after the sinking of the Cheonan, President Obama accused his counterpart, Chinese President Hu Jintao, of “willful blindness” in relation to North Korea in what was reported as a “blunt” conversation during the Group of 20 summit in Toronto on June 27. [8]

Since North Korea’s shelling of the South Korean island of Yeonpyeong on November 23, the U.S. has intensified pressure on China to rein in North Korea. Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Mullen recently told a Washington, D.C. think tank audience that “Beijing’s call for consultations will not be a substitute for action,” and, in reference to China’s military modernization program: “I am concerned about some of the high-end capabilities that they clearly are developing. I don’t underestimate them in terms of capability. Some of the specific capabilities are very clearly focused on and pointed at the United States of America, and they are anti-access capabilities.” [9] That is, China has the temerity to develop defensive capabilities in the face of U.S. military presence off its coasts.

The U.S. is exploiting North Korea as a decoy to target China and is supporting Japan in territorial conflicts with both China and Russia [10] as components of a broader strategy to renew, enlarge and integrate military alliances throughout the Asia-Pacific area. [11] Washington recognizes the Senkaku/Diaoyu islands, administered by Japan, as Japanese, but also refers to the Southern Kuril Islands, which since 1945 have belonged to Russia (and its predecessor state, the Soviet Union) as Japanese territories.

Hillary Clinton’s visit to New Zealand last month resulted in the signing of the Wellington Declaration committing the two countries to a new strategic partnership, annual military consultations and a resumption of joint military exercises. In fact what Clinton secured was the revival of the Cold War-era Australia, New Zealand, United States (ANZUS) Security Treaty which was signed during the Korean War and invoked to recruit Australian and New Zealand troops for the Vietnam War.

An Indian commentator said of the top U.S. diplomat’s achievement: “Clinton was not only given a traditional New Zealand Maori’s welcome called Powhiri, the greatest gift that she could bring back to Washington was the release of the New Zealand Defense White Paper 2010 two days before her arrival. The White Paper envisaged Wellington’s greater presence in the South Pacific and strengthening the alliance with Washington and Canberra.” [12]

Kevin Rudd, until recently Australia’s prime minister and now its foreign minister, affirmed on November 28 that “Australia could be drawn in to any military conflict on the Korean peninsula under its alliance with the US.” In his own words, “I…simply state the obvious: that under our alliance with the United States, Article 4 of the ANZUS Treaty is clear about our requirements to act to meet the common danger….” [13]

Similarly, a briefing note prepared for Defence Minister Peter MacKay of Canada revealed that “If war breaks out on the Korean peninsula, Canada could become embroiled due to a half-century-old United Nations military alliance,” the United Nations Command formed by the U.S. and its allies in the Korean War after the armistice was signed in 1953. The memo states that although the main “fighting formation” that would lead military operations against North Korea is the joint U.S.-South Korea Combined Forces Command, that joint command “includes under its strategic organizational umbrella the legacy United Nations Command.” [14]

Other members of the United Nations Command are Canada’s fellow NATO member states the U.S., Britain, France, the Netherlands, Belgium, Greece, Turkey and Luxembourg; ANZUS members Australia and New Zealand; the Philippines and Thailand, with which the U.S. has defense alliances – and military assistance obligations – comparable to those it has with Australia, Japan, New Zealand and South Korea.

As with the reactivation of trilateral ANZUS military obligations, so with the U.S.-Japanese mutual military assistance agreement. On October 27 Clinton held a press conference in Hawaii with Japanese Foreign Minister Seiji Maehara and when asked about an island chain contested by Japan and China – the Senkakus to Tokyo, the Diaoyus to Beijing – said, “the Senkakus fall within the scope of Article 5 of the 1960 U.S.-Japan Treaty of Mutual Cooperation and Security.

 This is part of the larger commitment that the United States has made to Japan’s security. We consider the Japanese-U.S. alliance one of the most important alliance partnerships we have anywhere in the world and we are committed to our obligations to protect the Japanese.” She also said the Washington-Tokyo alliance “is the cornerstone of American strategic engagement in the Asia Pacific.” [15]

Two weeks later President Obama was in Yokohama, Japan for the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit and told Prime Minister Naoto Kan that the U.S.-Japan alliance is “the cornerstone of American strategic engagement in the Asia Pacific” and “the commitment of the United States to the defense of Japan is unshakable.” [16]

Clinton’s and Obama’s phraseology was identical. In late October Clinton, flanked by her Japanese counterpart, said: “This year, we celebrate the 50th anniversary of our alliance, which was forged at the height of the Cold War,” in reference to the aforementioned Treaty of Mutual Cooperation and Security between the United States and Japan of 1960. [17]

In advance of the Keen Sword 2011 U.S.-Japan war games currently underway, Air Force Lieutenant General Hawk Carlisle, who is directing the exercise on the American side, stated in the middle of last month: “In 1960, Japan and the U.S. signed the Treaty of Mutual Cooperation and Security. Participation in Keen Sword further enhances the Japan-U.S. alliance, which remains a key strategic relationship in the Asia-Pacific region.” [18]

Clinton’s spokesman, the State Department’s Philip Crowley, backed Japan’s territorial claims on Russia’s Kuril Islands on November 2, even referring to them as the Northern Territories, the Japanese government’s designation. He didn’t go as far as Clinton had five days earlier in pledging adherence to Article 5 of the U.S.-Japan treaty – “Each Party recognizes that an armed attack against either Party in the territories under the administration of Japan would be dangerous to its own peace and safety and declares that it would act to meet the common danger” – but the prospect of Washington and Tokyo invoking the provision against Russia is not an unimaginable contingency.

On December 4 Japanese Foreign Minister Maehara will arrive at the northern island of Hokkaido “to view four Russian-held islands claimed by Japan, known as the Northern Territories in Japan and the Southern Kurils in Russia.” [19] While in Hokkaido, Maehara will meet with former residents of the Kurils.

Decades-old and until of late seemingly dormant or discarded military blocs, treaties and military assistance clauses are being resuscitated and expanded in the Asia-Pacific region. Military alliances modeled after the North Atlantic Treaty Organization in the area in the 1950s and their 21st century equivalents are being integrated into an eastern version of and in many ways extension of NATO. At least eight Asia-Pacific nations – Australia, Kazakhstan, Malaysia, Mongolia, New Zealand, Singapore, South Korea and Tonga – have troops assigned to NATO’s International Security Assistance Force in Afghanistan.

As part of the Afghan war effort, NATO maintains a military presence in five nations bordering western China: Afghanistan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Pakistan and Tajikistan.

Last month Japan announced that it was deploying an initial contingent of troops “to its westernmost island in response to Chinese naval manoeuvres in the East China Sea.” The first 100 troops will be sent to Yonaguni, the southernmost of the Ryukyu/Nansei islands less than 100 miles from the Senkaku/Diaoyu island grouping. The Japanese Defense Ministry is “also considering sending troops to the islands of Miyako and Ishigaki west of Okinawa to beef up border security.” [20] Ishigaki is also about 100 miles from the Senkaku/Diaoyu islands.

Regarding last month’s flurry of visits to the Asia-Pacific region by major U.S. foreign policy and military officials, The Hindu reported: “US visitors…declared Washington’s resolve to expand its footprint in South-East Asia. Clinton called for beefing up US military presence in Singapore, which implies a firmer grip on the strategic Strait of Malacca, strengthening defence cooperation with Thailand and the Philippines…and stepping up interaction with Vietnam.” [21]

The most ambitious element of American plans to forge an Asian equivalent of NATO is the recruitment of India as the largest and most strategically essential partner in the development of an eastern military bloc. The U.S. is moving to supplant Russia as India’s main weapons supplier and historical military ally and employing the South Asian nation to counter China’s emergence as a regional and world power.

Washington is proceeding at a breakneck – an alarming – pace with plans to politically and militarily polarize East Asia, using the crisis on the Korean Peninsula to do so. Attempts by China and Russia to defuse the conflict and resume negotiations aimed at its peaceful resolution are being spurned by headstrong and reckless U.S. government and military officials.

Russia and China share borders with North Korea. The U.S. is a continent away. A new conflagration on the peninsula would directly affect the first two nations. America can exploit a renewal of hostilities to reinstall itself in the Asia-Pacific region and use proxies – Japan as much as South Korea – to accomplish that objective.

North Korea Attack Part Of RAND Plan For Total War (Part 1 of 2)

North Korea Attack Part Of RAND Plan For Total War (Part 2 of 2)

The Tonka Report Editor’s Note: China holds $885 billion in worthless US Treasury Notes that they know the US can’t pay back. The only way for the US to renege on those notes is to orchestrate a war with China and Russia using the Koreas. This in turn will give Israel the perfect opportunity to attack Iran as they supply a vast amount of oil to the Chinese, thus killing two birds with one stone and WWIII is on– SJH

Link to original article below…

http://globalresearch.ca/index.php?context=va&aid=22248

Obama Peace Dividend Is War Profiteering Amidst Land Of Gandhi

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November 8, 2010: Chris Floyd / Empire Burlesque – November 7, 2010

The Nobel Peace Laureate Barack Obama, who in his prize-claiming speech boldly claimed the mantle of Mahatma Gandhi, is now visiting India. And why has he made this pilgrimage to the homeland of his spiritual mentor? Has he come to drink more deeply of the wellsprings of satyagraha, to steep himself more thoroughly in the Gandhian principles of courageous, active, non-violent resistance to evil, to the Mahatma’s ceaseless dedication to the poor and the outcast?

No: he has come to seal the deal on the sixth largest sale of war weapons in the history of the United States: $5 billion for the bristling, burgeoning Indian military, currently waging war on millions of its own people in Kashmir and the poverty-devastated state of central India, where the despair is so deep that suicide among the poor is epidemic.

Five billion dollars could have transformed the lives and futures of millions; instead it will go into the pockets of a few American war profiteers — who will of course spread the wealth around to their favorite politicians … such as Barack Obama, the leading recipient of war industry money in the 2008 campaign, outdoing even that old soldier and ardent militarist, John McCain.

And of course the Indian arms deal comes hot on the heels of the largest transaction of death-machinery in American history: Obama’s $60 billion war-profiteering bonanza with Saudi Arabia, one of the most suffocatingly repressive and inhumane regimes on the face of the earth.

But the Peace Laureate doesn’t care about that. He knows what is truly important — and it isn’t the blighted lives of the Saudi people, or all those affected by the corruption and extremism that the Saudi royals have spread around the world (with the connivance, cooperation — or at the command of — the bipartisan American power structure). What matters most to the progressive paragon of peace is the sixty billion dollars stuffed into the coffers of his militarist backers.

If Obama wins re-election in 2012, it will not be because he “made a mid-course correction” or “learned the lessons” of the 2010 vote or “moved to the center” or any such witless expectoration of conventional wisdom. It will be because his militarist backers have judged his arms deals and Terror War operations sufficiently profitable to justify his retention. As is always the case with the War Machine that rules us, follow the money — and the blood.

II.

While Obama peddles the tools of death and destruction in India, others are taking a different approach. At the London Review of Books, Tariq Ali recently provided the context for a short, powerful piece by Arundhati Roy on speaking truth to – and about — power… First Ali:

Arundhati Roy is both loathed and feared by the Indian elite. Loathed because she speaks her mind. Feared because her voice reaches the world outside India and damages the myths perpetrated by New Delhi regardless of which party holds power. She often annoys the official Indian Left because she writes and speaks of events for which they are either responsible or of which they dare not speak. Roy will not allow her life to be subjugated by lies. She never affects a courage or contempt she does not feel. Her campaigns against injustice are undertaken with no view to either fame or profit. Hence the respect awarded her by the poor, ordinary citizens, who know the truth but are not allowed a voice in the public sphere. The authorities can’t buy her silence. One of the few voices in India who has spoken loudly against the continuing Indian atrocities in Kashmir, she is now being threatened. If she doesn’t shut up they’ll charge her with sedition, aping their colonial masters of yesteryear. Her response to those who would charge and imprison her is a model of clarity, conviction and refusal to compromise.”

And here is that response, in full, from the Times of India:

“I write this from Srinagar, Kashmir. This morning’s papers say that I may be arrested on charges of sedition for what I have said at recent public meetings on Kashmir. I said what millions of people here say every day. I said what I, as well as other commentators have written and said for years. Anybody who cares to read the transcripts of my speeches will see that they were fundamentally a call for justice. I spoke about justice for the people of Kashmir who live under one of the most brutal military occupations in the world; for Kashmiri Pandits who live out the tragedy of having been driven out of their homeland; for Dalit soldiers killed in Kashmir whose graves I visited on garbage heaps in their villages in Cuddalore; for the Indian poor who pay the price of this occupation in material ways and who are now learning to live in the terror of what is becoming a police state…

“Yesterday I traveled to Shopian, the apple-town in South Kashmir which had remained closed for 47 days last year in protest against the brutal rape and murder of Asiya and Nilofer, the young women whose bodies were found in a shallow stream near their homes and whose murderers have still not been brought to justice. I met Shakeel, who is Nilofer’s husband and Asiya’s brother. We sat in a circle of people crazed with grief and anger who had lost hope that they would ever get ‘insaf’—justice—from India, and now believed that Azadi—freedom— was their only hope. I met young stone pelters who had been shot through their eyes. I traveled with a young man who told me how three of his friends, teenagers in Anantnag district, had been taken into custody and had their finger-nails pulled out as punishment for throwing stones. In the papers some have accused me of giving ‘hate-speeches’, of wanting India to break up. On the contrary, what I say comes from love and pride. It comes from not wanting people to be killed, raped, imprisoned or have their finger-nails pulled out in order to force them to say they are Indians. It comes from wanting to live in a society that is striving to be a just one. Pity the nation that has to silence its writers for speaking their minds. Pity the nation that needs to jail those who ask for justice, while communal killers, mass murderers, corporate scamsters, looters, rapists, and those who prey on the poorest of the poor, roam free.” – Arundhati Roy – October 26, 2010 

Arundhati Roy: Wars For Corporate Globalization 2008

The Tonka Report Editor’s Note: How is that Fantasy Football League working out for you this year? – SJH 

Link to original article below…

http://chris-floyd.com/articles/1-latest-news/2046-obamas-peace-dividend-war-profiteering-in-the-land-of-gandhi.html

Obama Defends Insane QE2 Take Down Of Dazed Global Economy

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November 8, 2010: Kurt Nimmo / Infowars.com – November 8, 2010

In response to China and Russia complaining about the insanity that is QE2, Obama has defended the Federal Reserve.

“U.S. President Barack Obama defended the Federal Reserve’s policy of printing dollars on Monday after China and Russia stepped up criticism ahead of this week’s Group of 20 meeting,” reports Reuters today.

“I will say that the Fed’s mandate, my mandate, is to grow our economy. And that’s not just good for the United States, that’s good for the world as a whole,” Obama said during his extravagant trip to India.

Should we be surprised that Obama’s mandate is the same mandate of the international banksters that own the Federal Reserve and have pawned it off for nearly a century as an agency of the U.S. government? No, of course not. Barry Obama is a script-reader for the global elite. He will read anything that scrolls across his teleprompter.

As Michael Snyder of the Economic Collapse noted last week, many economists now believe that the Federal Reserve has crossed the Rubicon by announcing another wave of quantitative easing.

“Have we now reached a point where the Federal Reserve is simply going to fire up the printing presses and shower massive wads of cash into the financial system whenever the U.S. economy is not growing fast enough? If so, what does that mean for inflation, the stability of the world financial system and the future of the U.S. dollar?” writes Snyder.

It means the end of the dollar as the world’s reserve currency. It means another round of completely insane and suicidal debt ultimately owed to banksters.

According to the financial talking heads in the corporate media, printing money out of thin air and creating astronomical debt piled upon previously astronomical debt will stimulate the economy and get things working again. “The sad truth is that the Federal Reserve is not trying to build an economic recovery on solid financial principles. Rather, what the Federal Reserve envisions is an ‘economic recovery’ based on new debt creation,” writes Snyder.

“If 1.8 trillion dollars didn’t work before, why does the Federal Reserve think that 900 billion dollars is going to work now? This new round of quantitative easing will create more inflation and will cause speculative asset bubbles, but it is not going to fix what is wrong with the economy. In fact, it will make things worse, far worse, for the average citizen…

“Most Americans have absolutely no idea how fragile the world financial system is right now. Once the rest of the world loses faith in the U.S. dollar and in U.S. Treasuries this entire thing could completely unravel very quickly.”

In short, the situation is the exact opposite of what Obama says it is. After the Fed prints around $600 billion and uses it to purchase government bonds, the skids will be greased for a fall of the global economy. China and Russia know this. And this is why they are complaining at the G20 about the insane QE2 death spiral about to take place.

Ron Paul : This Monetary System Can’t Last!

Ron Paul believes QE2 represents the beginning of the end of the Federal Reserve system. “I think the Fed will self-destruct,” Paul told CNBC (see video above). “People will desert the dollar. I think the Chinese are hinting that already. They are not wanting our dollars as much as raw materials. This is a deeply flawed monetary system. Here we have a small group of people who can create $600 billion with the stroke of a pen…

“I don’t know where people are coming from to think that this can work. What really astounds me is how tolerant the people are, the people in Congress and the financial market, where did this authority come from? Now somebody outside of the government can spend trillions of dollars and not think anything about it. It doesn’t work, it’s a failure. And next year it will be more. Bernanke is very clear on what he is going to do — he is going to create money until he gets economic growth and there is no evidence to show that just creating money causes economic growth.” Failure or engineered financial implosion?

In the meantime, you’ll have to endure Barry Obama. Not only Barry, but his groomed apologists like potty-mouth “comedian” Bill Maher and the globalist Fahreed Zakaria, who is now a prized asset of that crown jewel of the CIA’s Operation Mockingbird, Time Magazine. In response to an exaggeration on the exact amount of money the American tax payer will be forced to shell out at gunpoint in order to pay for Barry’s jaunt to India, Maher said the internet is contributing to a devolution of reality, as John Byrne of Raw Story puts it.

“Do you think the right wing lives in a bubble?” Maher asked a panel, including Zakaria. “Or a mental institution?” added Fahreed in response to “right wing” criticism of Barry’s trip and his policies – the policies of the global elite – in general.

No, the mental institution is on the Potomac. It is excused and rationalized by the likes of Maher, Zakaria, and Paul Krugman of the New York Times, the latter who never saw a global bankster he did not want to embrace.

“Krugman is exactly the opposite of a free market economist,” Ron Paul told CNBC. “I would think by now he would have been totally discredited and it’s tragic — I pray every night that his views will just disappear because what he wants to do is more of the bad stuff… He is leading the intellectual charge for the total destruction of the dollar. I don’t see how he has any credibility whatsoever.” Ditto Maher and Zakaria…

Fareed Zakaria On Bill Maher

The Tonka Report Editor’s Note: Meanwhile, the primary reason for Obama’s extravagant visit to India on the taxpayer’s dime is to facilitate the 6th biggest arms deal in US history – SJH

Real Reason For Obama’s Trip To India: The Sixth Biggest Arms Deal In U.S. History

http://uruknet.com/?p=m71600&hd=&size=1&l=e

Link to original article below…

http://www.infowars.com/obama-defends-insane-qe2-takedown-of-global-economy/

US Had Multiple Warnings On Alleged “Plotter” Of Mumbai Attacks

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October 16, 2010:  Jane Perlez, Eric Schmitt, Ginger Thompson / NY Times – October 16, 2010

Less than a year before terrorists killed at least 163 people in Mumbai, India, a young Moroccan woman went to American authorities in Pakistan to warn them that she believed her husband, David C. Headley, was plotting an attack.

It was not the first time American law enforcement authorities were warned about Mr. Headley, a longtime informer in Pakistan for the United States Drug Enforcement Administration whose roots in Pakistan and the United States allowed him to move easily in both worlds. Two years earlier, in 2005, an American woman who was also married to the 50-year-old Mr. Headley told federal investigators in New York that she believed he was a member of the militant group Lashkar-e-Taiba created and sponsored by Pakistan’s powerful intelligence agency.

Despite those warnings by two of his three wives Mr. Headley roamed far and wide on Lashkar’s behalf between 2002 and 2009, receiving training in small-caliber weapons and countersurveillance, scouting targets for attack, and building a network of connections that extended from Chicago to Pakistan’s lawless northwestern frontier. Then in 2008, it was his handiwork as chief reconnaissance scout that set the stage for Lashkar’s strike against Mumbai, an assault intended to provoke a conflict between nuclear-armed adversaries, Pakistan and India.

An examination of Mr. Headley’s movements in the years before the bombing, based on interviews in Washington, Pakistan, India and Morocco, shows that he had overlapping, even baffling, contacts among seemingly disparate groups — Pakistani intelligence, terrorists, and American drug investigators.

Those ties are rekindling concerns that the Mumbai bombings represent another communications breakdown in the fight against terrorism, and are raising the question of whether United States officials were reluctant to dig deeper into Mr. Headley’s movements because he had been an informant for the D.E.A.

More significantly, they may indicate American wariness to pursue evidence that some officials in Pakistan, its major ally in the war against Al Qaeda, were involved in planning an attack that killed six Americans.

The Pakistani government has insisted that its spy agency, the Inter-Services Intelligence Directorate, a close partner of the C.I.A., did not know of the attack. The United States says it has no evidence to counter this, though officials acknowledge that some current or retired ISI officers probably played some role.

It is unclear what United States officials did with the warnings they had gotten about Mr. Headley — who has pleaded guilty to the crimes and is cooperating with authorities — or whether they saw them as complaints from wives whose motives might be colored by their strained relations with their husband.

Federal officials say that the State Department and the F.B.I. investigated the warnings they received about Mr. Headley at the time, but that they could not confirm any connections between him and Lashkar-e-Taiba. D.E.A. officials have said they ended their association with him at the end of 2001, at least two months before Mr. Headley reportedly attended his first terrorist training. But some Indian officials say they suspect that Mr. Headley’s contacts with the American drug agency lasted much longer.

The investigative news organization ProPublica reported the 2005 warning from Mr. Headley’s American ex-wife on its Web site and in the Saturday issue of The Washington Post. By ProPublica’s account, she told authorities that Mr. Headley boasted about working as an American informant while he trained with Lashkar.

On Saturday, Mike Hammer, a spokesman for the National Security Council, said in a statement, “The United States regularly provided threat information to Indian officials in 2008 before the attacks in Mumbai.” He also said, “Had we known about the timing and other specifics related to the Mumbai attacks, we would have immediately shared those details with the government of India.”

Mr. Headley’s American wife was not the only one to come forward. The Moroccan wife described her separate warnings in an interview with The New York Times. Other interviews illustrate his longstanding connections to American law enforcement and the ISI.

Among the findings:

An officer of the Pakistani spy agency handed Mr. Headley $25,000 in early 2006 to open an office and set up a house in Mumbai to be used as a front during his scouting trips, according to Mr. Headley’s testimony to Indian investigators in Chicago in June. As part of Mr. Headley’s plea agreement, Indian investigators were allowed to interview him in Chicago, where he was arrested in October 2009.

The ISI officer who gave Mr. Headley the cash, known as Major Iqbal, served as the supervisor of Lashkar’s planning, helping to arrange a communications system for the attack, and overseeing a model of the Taj Mahal Hotel, so that gunmen could find their way around, according to Mr. Headley’s testimony to the Indians.

While working for Lashkar, which has close ties to the ISI, Mr. Headley was also enlisted by the Pakistani spy agency to recruit Indian agents to monitor Indian troop levels and movements, an American official said.

Besides Mr. Headley’s guilty plea in a United States court, seven Pakistani suspects have been charged there. American investigators say a critical player who has not been charged is Sajid Mir, a Lashkar operative who became close to Mr. Headley as the plans for the Mumbai operation unfolded. The investigators fear he is still working on other plots.

Mr. Headley was known both to Pakistani and American security officials long before his arrest as a terrorist. He went to an elite military high school in Pakistan, whose graduates went on to become high-ranking military officers and intelligence operatives. After arrests in 1988 and 1997 on drug-trafficking charges, Mr. Headley became such a valued D.E.A. informant that the drug agency sent him back and forth between Pakistan and the United States.

In several interviews in her home, Mr. Headley’s Moroccan wife, Faiza Outalha, described the warnings she gave to American officials less than a year before gunmen attacked several popular tourist attractions in Mumbai. She claims she even showed the embassy officials a photo of Mr. Headley and herself in the Taj Mahal Hotel where they stayed twice in April and May 2007. Hotel records confirm their stay.

Ms. Outalha, 27, said that in two meetings with American officials at the United States Embassy in Islamabad, she told the authorities that her husband had many friends who were known members of Lashkar-e-Taiba. She said she told them that he was passionately anti-Indian, but that he traveled to India all the time for business deals that never seemed to amount to much.

And she said she told them Mr. Headley assumed different identities: as a devout Muslim who went by the name Daood when he was in Pakistan, and as an American playboy named David, when he was in India. “I told them, he’s either a terrorist, or he’s working for you,” she recalled saying to American officials at the United States Embassy in Islamabad. “Indirectly, they told me, to get lost.” Though there are lots of gaping holes left in Mr. Headley’s public profile, the one thing that is clear is he assumed multiple personas.

He was born in the United States, the son of a Pakistani diplomat and a socialite from Philadelphia’s Main Line. When he was about a year old, his parents took him to Pakistan, where he attended the Hasan Abdal Cadet College, the country’s oldest military boarding school, just outside of Islamabad. Mr. Headley’s parents divorced. And before he finished high school, he moved to Philadelphia to help his American mother run a bar, called the Khyber Pass. Later he opened a couple of video rental stores.

But at the same time he was involved in a life of crime. Each time he was arrested on drug trafficking charges, he used his roots in the United States and Pakistan to make himself as valuable an asset to law enforcement as he was to the traffickers; one with the looks and passports to move easily across borders, and the charisma to penetrate secretive organizations.

He was married at least three times. For one period he was married to all three wives — Ms. Outalha, who is a medical student half his age, a New York makeup artist, and a conservative Pakistani Muslim — at the same time. Those relationships, however, caused him trouble. In 2005, his American wife filed domestic abuse charges against Mr. Headley, according to federal investigators in New York, and reported his ties to Lashkar-e-Taiba. The investigators said the tip was passed on to the F.B.I.’s Joint Terrorism Task Force.

Then in December 2007, Ms. Outalha talked her way into the heavily guarded American Embassy in Islamabad. She went back a month later with more information. A senior administration official acknowledged that Ms. Outalha met twice with an assistant regional security officer and an Immigration and Customs Enforcement officer at the embassy. However, the administration official said Ms. Outalha offered almost no details to give credibility to her warnings.

“The texture of the meeting was that her husband involved with bad people, and they were planning jihad,” the official said. “But she gave no details about who was involved, or what they planned to target.”

Given that she had been jilted, Ms. Outalha acknowledged she may not have been composed. “I wanted him in Guantánamo,” she said. More than that, however, Ms. Outalha says, she went to American authorities looking for answers to questions about Mr. Headley’s real identity. In public he criticized the United States for the war in Iraq and Afghanistan. But at night he loved watching Seinfeld and Jay Leno.

Sipping tea in a cafe overlooking a plaza in Morocco, Ms. Outalha said that in hindsight, she is convinced that he is both men. She claims to be puzzled that American officials did not heed her warning. “I told them anything I could to get their attention,” she said of the American authorities at the embassy in Islamabad. “It was as if I was shouting, This guy was a terrorist! You have to do something.”

RT: Mumbai Siege Suspect A US Double Agent

The Tonka Report Editor’s Note: Again the CIA is neck-deep in both drug dealing and terrorism! – SJH

Link to original article below…

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/10/17/world/asia/17headley.html?pagewanted=2&hp

Rising War Rumors: U.S. Plans To Seize Pakistan’s Nuclear Arsenal

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October 16, 2010: Rick Rozoff / Global Research – October 16, 2010

Two recent news items emanating from the United States have begun to reverberate in Pakistan and give rise to speculation that growing American drone strikes and NATO helicopter attacks in that country may be the harbingers of far broader actions: Nothing less than the expansion of the West’s war in Afghanistan into Pakistan with the ultimate goal of seizing the nation’s nuclear weapons.

The News International, Pakistan’s largest English-language newspaper, published a report on October 13 based on excerpts from American journalist Bob Woodward’s recently released volume “Obama’s Wars” which stated that during a trilateral summit between the presidents of the U.S., Afghanistan and Pakistan on May 6 of 2009 Pakistani head of state Asif Ali Zardari accused Washington of being behind Taliban attacks inside his country with the intent to use them so “the US could invade and seize its nuclear weapons.” [1]

Woodward recounted comments exchanged at a dinner with Zardari and Afghan-born Zalmay Khalilzad, former U.S. ambassador to the United Nations (2007-2009), to Iraq (2005-2007) and Afghanistan (2003-2005). Khalilzad was also a close associate of Jimmy Carter administration National Security Advisor Zbigniew Brzezinski, architect of the U.S. strategy to support attacks by armed extremists based in Pakistan against Afghanistan starting in 1978, when he joined the Polish expatriate at Columbia University from 1979-1989.

The baton for what is now Washington’s over 30-year involvement in Afghanistan was passed from Brzezinski to Khalilzad in the 1980s when the latter was appointed one of the Ronald Reagan administration’s senior State Department officials in charge of supporting Mujahedin fighters operating out of Peshawar in Pakistan. He joined the State Department in 1984 on a Council on Foreign Relations fellowship and worked for Paul Wolfowitz, then-Assistant Secretary of State for East Asian and Pacific Affairs, at Foggy Bottom. His efforts were augmented by the Central Intelligence Agency’s deputy director at the time, Robert Gates, now U.S. defense secretary. Two of their three chief clients, Gulbuddin Hekmatyar and Jalaluddin Haqqani, are founders and leaders of Hezb-e Islami Gulbuddin and the Haqqani network, against whom Gates’ Pentagon is currently waging war on both sides of the Afghanistan-Pakistan border.

According to Woodward’s account of the Pakistani president’s accusations to Khalilzad in May of last year, “Zardari dropped his diplomatic guard. He suggested that one of…two countries was arranging the attacks by the Pakistani Taliban inside his country: India or the US. Zardari didn’t think India could be that clever, but the US could. [Afghan President Hamid] Karzai had told him the US was behind the attacks, confirming the claims made by the Pakistani ISI [Inter-Services Intelligence].” [2]

Khalilzad, whose résumé also includes stints at the Defense Department, the National Security Council, the Center for Strategic and International Studies, the National Endowment for Democracy, the RAND Corporation (where he assisted in establishing the Middle East Studies Center) and the Project for the New American Century, reportedly took issue with Zardari’s contention, which led to the latter responding that what he had described “was a plot to destabilize Pakistan,” hatched in order that, according to Woodward’s version of his words, “the US could invade and seize [Pakistan’s] nuclear weapons.”

The account stated Zardari “could not explain the rapid expansion in violence otherwise. And the CIA had not pursued the leaders of the Pakistani Taliban, a group known as Tehrik-e-Taliban-e-Pakistan or TTP that had attacked the government. TTP was also blamed for the assassination of Zardari’s wife, Benazir Bhutto.” In the Pakistani president’s words: “We give you targets of Taliban people you don’t go after. You go after other areas. We’re puzzled.”

When Khalilzad mentioned that U.S. drone attacks inside Pakistan “were primarily meant to hunt down members of al Qaeda and Afghan insurgents, not the Pakistan Taliban,” Zardari responded by insisting “But the Taliban movement is tied to al Qaeda…so by not attacking the targets recommended by Pakistan the US had revealed its support of the TTP. The CIA at one time had even worked with the group’s leader, Baitullah Mehsud,” Zardari asserted. [3] (Three months later a CIA-directed drone strike killed Mehsud, his wife and several in-laws and bodyguards.)

In August of 2009, while still commander of all U.S. and NATO forces in Afghanistan, then-General Stanley McChrystal issued his classified COMISAF (Commander of International Security Assistance Force) Initial Assessment which asserted the “major insurgent groups in order of their threat to the mission are: the Quetta Shura Taliban (05T), the Haqqani Network (HQN), and the Hezb-e Islami Gulbuddin (HiG).” [4] The first is an Afghan Taliban group which as its name indicates is based in the capital of Pakistan’s Balochistan province.

Steve Coll, Alfred McCoy and other authorities on the subject have documented the CIA’s involvement with Gulbuddin Hekmatyar and Jalaluddin Haqqani: That they were shared with if not transferred by Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence to the CIA as private assets. Coll has additionally claimed that Haqqani sheltered and supported Osama bin Laden starting in the 1980s.

At the meeting between Obama, Zardari and Karzai in May of 2009, the American president slighted his two counterparts for alleged lack of resolve in prosecuting the war on both sides of the Durand Line, although even as he spoke Pakistan was engaged in a major military assault in the Swat Valley which led to the displacement of 3 million civilians.

Four days after the dinner exchange between Zardari and Khalilzad, the Pakistani president appeared on the May 10 edition of NBC’s Meet the Press on a program which also included Afghan President Karzai and Steve Coll, now president and CEO of the New America Foundation and author of Ghost Wars: The Secret History of the CIA, Afghanistan, and Bin Laden, from the Soviet Invasion to September 10, 2001 (2004) and The Bin Ladens: An Arabian Family in the American Century (2008).

Zardari’s comments to his American audience included the claim that the Taliban “was part of your past and our past, and the ISI and the CIA created them together. And I can find you 10 books and 10 philosophers and 10 write-ups on that….” [5]

That the leaders of the other two armed groups identified by McChrystal – Haqqani and Hekmatyar – were among the three Mujahedin leaders financed, armed and trained by the CIA (the late Ahmed Shah Massoud being the third), makes the pattern complete: Robert Gates the defense secretary is leading a war against forces that Robert Gates the deputy director of the CIA earlier supported through one of the Agency’s longest and most expensive covert programs, Operation Cyclone.

After retiring from public life, George Kennan, the main architect of U.S. Cold War policy, cited a line he ascribed to Goethe to warn that in the end we are all destroyed by monsters of our own creation. To emend Voltaire, the White House rather than God is a comedian playing to an audience too afraid to laugh.

Woodward’s account of last year’s comments by Pakistan’s president and Zalmay Khalilzad could be dismissed as merely anecdotal if not for an article that appeared in the New York Post on October 3 and developments in Pakistan itself over the past six weeks.

Arthur Herman, a visiting scholar at the conservative American Enterprise Institute think tank, stated in an article entitled “Our Pakistan problem: Obama’s approach is failing” that “The bitter irony is that even as Obama is trying to get out of the war in Afghanistan, he may be heading us into one in Pakistan.”

The author detailed that whereas in 2009 the U.S. launched 45 Predator unmanned aerial vehicle (drone) attacks inside Pakistan, it had tripled that number by the time his article appeared, and that half as many as last year’s total strikes had been launched this September alone.

Also mentioning the NATO helicopter attack in the Kurram Agency of Pakistan’s Federally Administered Tribal Areas on September 30 which killed three members of the Frontier Corps and that “Raids by the CIA’s Counterterrorism Pursuit Team – with its 3,000 Afghan troops – into Pakistan are also becoming routine,” Herman warned:

“All this adds up to a US effort in Pakistan highly reminiscent of the one we undertook in Laos in the 1960s – one of the springboards into the Vietnam quagmire…If Obama’s growing pressure on Pakistan destabilizes that government, the only thing keeping that country’s nukes out of the hands of al Qaeda may have to be US troops. That’s a shooting-war scenario that will make Obama wish his name was Lyndon Baines Johnson.” [6]

Herman attributes the expansion of the Afghan war into Pakistan at a qualitatively more dangerous level to the machinations of former CIA officer and current Senior Fellow at the Brookings Institution Bruce Riedel and the commander of 152,000 U.S. and NATO troops in Afghanistan General David Petraeus.

A report of October 13 documented that since Petraeus took command of the war effort in Afghanistan in June there has been a 172 percent increase in U.S. and NATO air strikes, from 257 assault missions in September of 2009 to over 700 last month. In addition, “Surveillance flights increased to nearly three times the number from September 2009 and supply flights are up as well….Petraeus is sometimes seen as more willing to risk the so-called ‘collateral damage’ of civilian deaths….[7]

Last month’s drone attacks were the most in any month since the targeted assasinations were started in 2004 and the amount of deaths they caused – over 150 – the highest monthly total to date. By the middle of this month there have been at least eight drone attacks and no fewer than 66 people killed.

According to Steve Coll’s New America Foundation, 1,439 of the 1,844 deaths caused by drone attacks in Pakistan since 2004 have occurred in 2009 and so far this year. [8] Similarly, the deaths of 1,111 of 2,160 U.S. and NATO soldiers killed in Afghanistan since 2001 occurred in the same period. Seventeen foreign soldiers were killed between October 13 and 16 alone.

On October 13 the Pakistani press reported that NATO helicopters, until then operating solely in the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (in four attacks between September 25-30 against the Haqqani network), violated the nation’s airspace over the province of Balochistan, leading Islamabad to lodge a formal protest with NATO.

Since the revelations from Bob Woodward’s new book and the publication of Arthur Herman’s article, commentaries in Pakistani newspapers have appeared which indicate the seriousness with which recent developments and even more ominous portents are being viewed.

An October 13 feature in The Nation stated that “the ongoing war on terror in Afghanistan is aimed to take the operations into Pakistani territory….The real target is Pakistan’s nuclear potential; they [the U.S. and NATO] have no plausible security threat from the ill-equipped Taliban or ragtag extremists.”

Commenting on the New York Post feature cited earlier, Pakistani commentator A R Jerral further claimed that what “Herman suggests in his write-up is in fact a policy direction to the US administration. He implies that the policy of sending drones and attacking militant hideouts in the Pakistan territory has not worked….[T]he thrust is Pakistan’s nukes. It is a tacit way to tell the policymakers in Washington to keep the pressure on our country, which will weaken the Pakistani government’s standing, causing instability. That will provide the reason for the US troops to move in.”

He added: “We know about the drone attacks as these are reported in the media, but what we do not know and our media does not report is the fact that US-led NATO forces are launching crossborder raids into Pakistan….For this, CIA is operating Counterterrorism Pursuit Teams in Afghanistan…These teams are regularly mounting ground raids into Pakistani territory.”

“In this way, things are getting hot as far as the war on terror is concerned. Pakistan is moving to become centre stage in this war. Bruce Riedel, a former CIA and NSC [National Security Council] official, has advised Mr Obama to shift the focus of war ‘from Afghanistan to Pakistan’; this is what we are witnessing in the shape of heightened war effort into the Pakistan territory.” [9]

A Pakistani commentary of the preceding day stated: “[W]e have…been dragged into giving the US access to Balochistan from where it has been attempting to destabilise the Iranian regime through support for the terrorist group Jundullah….Even more threatening, unless we change course now, we will have lost the battle to retain our nuclear assets because that is where the NATO-US trail is eventually leading to.”

“The free-wheeling access to US covert military and intelligence operatives, both officials and private contractors, is another destabilising factor that we seem to be unable or unwilling to check. And now there are the NATO incursions into our territory and targeting of even our military personnel, which shows how servile a state we are living in at present. [10]

As the war in Afghanistan, the largest and longest in the world, proceeds with record casualties among civilians and combatants alike on both sides of the Afghan-Pakistani border, plans are afoot to further expand the war into Pakistan and to threaten Iran as well.

Comparisons to Washington’s war in Indochina have been mentioned. [11] But Pakistan with its 180 million people and nuclear weapons is not Cambodia and Iran with its population of over 70 million is not Laos.

The Tonka Report Editor’s Note: As I’ve previously stated, if the “United States of Israel” can destabilize Pakistan and take control of their nuclear arsenal, it would effectively disable the only nuclear armed Muslim nation in the region, thus opening the door for an all-out aerial assault (possibly nuclear) on Iran by Israel and the US. Other than it’s obvious illegal and immoral implications, there’s two major problems with this insane and murderous tactic… Russia and China! – SJH 

Related: Pakistan Patriot – Zardari Says He Has Proof Of US Terror Against Pakistan

http://www.pakistanpatriot.com/?p=32963  

Link to original article with notes below…

http://www.globalresearch.ca/index.php?context=va&aid=21475