Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Someone here in Brasil was just asking me why folks in the states don´t remember these scandles...

Bush and Cheney Didn't Invent the Illegal, Immoral Shadow Government and Foreign Policy with Disastrous Results. They Just Perfected It.
Lost History: Contras, Cocaine, the Press & 'Project Truth' (Paperback)
Robert Parry's Review (
From online reviewer Robert Steele about "Lost History," a classic insight into America's gruesome foreign policy secrets under the Reagan/Bush I administrations:This book is a real gem. It outlines a tale of both corruption and ideological mendacity within the White House, and of ignorance and unprofessionalism with the Directorate of Operations in the Central Intelligence Agency. As one who served on the Central American Task Force at the time, and as a clandestine case officer focused on these matters, I find it especially fascinating that I, from the inside, was truly unaware of the degree to which we were engaged in direct support to a band of contras characterized by drug-running, money-laundering, corruption, rape, torture, routine murders, and perhaps worse of all, total incompetence and ineffectiveness.There are two aspects of this book that truly stand out for anyone who is committed, as I and most CIA employees are, to the concept that "the truth shall make you free."First, as the title suggests, there is a "lost history" that is unavailable to the American people. The author is not alone in making this charge. The editors of the history of the Department of State have on several occasions complained, both publicly and privately, that an accurate history of the foreign relations of the United States of America cannot be written without more complete disclosure of our various covert operations. Indeed, Derek Leebaert's book "The Fifty-Year Wound", Jim Bamford's book "Body of Secrets", and Sterling and Peggy Sterling's book "Gold Warriors", among a number of others books but these three reviewed by me on Amazon and being the most recent and best documentary efforts, all show that America has paid a *huge* cost, a cost running to trillions of dollars in deceitfully mis-spent dollars and lives, for clandestine and covert activities that have inspired enmity, often nurtured environments of genocide and war crimes (Sudan today, for example, given a "bye" for its nominal counter-terrorism support), and spawned vast war profiteering enterprises at the same time that we nurture and encourage dictatorships such as those in Saudi Arabia and Pakistan, both of which are protecting Bin Laden, his family (which we allowed to escape from the US rather than taking them hostage--a White House accommodation to its Saudi paymasters), and other terrorists. America needs to understand the truth about such matters, and this book helps.The other major value of this book is its examination of how the [Reagan/Bush I] White House violated various US laws and values by running psychological operations and media campaigns against its own public. Especially distressing has been the manner in which the National Public Radio (NPR) has been "brought to heel" by threats to cut off its federal subsidies if it fails to accept the lies of the Administration and actually reports truthfully to the public. The Associated Press (AP) is also shown in this book to have subverted the truth and conformed to the falsehoods and propaganda line being purveyed by the Reagan Administration against the American people. The New York Times is specifically cited, on several occasions, and publishing false and misleading information, not because its employees lack ethics (as has recently been the case) but because the NYT is part of the "establishment" and all too eager to betray its readers by publishing the party line from a corrupt White House.
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Other Reviews
"Robert Parry is a reporter with a wealth of experience who combines knowledge with investigative expertise and a bedrock courage to find the truth and faithfully report it. Here is the reporter who uncovered the illegal government operation of Oliver North in the National Security Council office, which violated federal law by providing weapons, manpower, and logistical advice to the Contras in Nicaragua. The government did its best to smear the Associated Press and later Newsweek reporter, painting him as unreliable and a man with his own agenda, but ultimately the truth won out.Parry brilliantly documents what the Contras were really all about. The so-called Nicaraguan freedom fighters which President Ronald Reagan referred to as "the moral equivalent of our Founding Fathers" were instead involved in a major drug networking operation, aided by the CIA. The result was that scores of youngsters in South Central Los Angeles became drug addicts as they moved their operations into America while battles waged among young gang members over turf control. When Senator John Kerry sought to expose what was happening he too was denounced as a troublemaker operating against America's best interests.Parry tells about what political correctness really is, and it is far removed from what is depicted by right wingers seeking to pin the tag on liberal critics. To Parry this correctness takes the form of barking on cue in alliance with and as supplicants to the major commercial interests which hold sway not only over those in political power, but on the media itself. His efforts to exercise independence of judgment were accompanied by negative reactions from powers in the media as well as Washington operatives. All the same he prevailed, and hopefully he and others will continue telling their stories despite the fervent efforts to silence them."
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Sunday, November 4, 2007

A walk along Copacabana

After a great trip, and a
Saturday that took me to a party in the moutnains where I was able to sleep off my jet lag in a hammock while it poured rain... I woke up this morning and had "cafe de manha" in a great little street place, with Ulicio before he pointed me toward the right direction on the metro to meet Vitor and Luis to make a try at going to the beach...

It being humid and very hot, and portending to rain, we all put our sungas in out backpacks with the best of intentions and alternative plans... but as we left, they began to recieve and send chamadas (multple calls on the cell phone, as is the custom here). So after walking just a few hundred metres (after lunch) we went a a few blocks, and encountered friends going one way, others walking to another, stopped here and there for lunch, chopes, etc... we ended up dodging one shower at a restuanrnt near the feirinha de hippie, and got soaked as we got to their apartment... great fun...

There are cows all over the city, I´ll try and take more pictures... the one here is a "vaca na praia" a beach cow... I give my talk at UFRJ tomorrow evenign and sicne Malu is oiff teachign, Ulicio is going to a formatura, Vitor is off to Rondonia, Luis was dlegated to take care of me tomorrow evening.
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