Monday, January 08, 2007

Sibel Edmonds & the Neocons' Turkish Gravy-Train

Sibel Edmonds recently wrote a fantastic White Paper recently called "The Highjacking of a Nation- Part 2: The Auctioning of Former Statesmen & Dime a Dozen Generals" which basically laid out the facts of her case for all to see. In a chapter titled "The Real Lords of the Poppy Fields" she noted that
  • most of Afghanistan's heroin & opium is processed and trafficked through Turkey
  • "Heroin trafficking is also the main source of funding for the al-Qaeda terrorists "
  • Turkey is a haven for (Al Qaeda’s) sources of funding.

Sibel then notes that
"It is puzzling to observe that in reporting this major artery (Turkey) of terrorists’ funding, the U.S. mainstream media and political machine do not dare to go beyond the poppy fields of Afghanistan and the fairly insignificant low level Afghan warlords overseeing the crops."

I was therefore curious to see how the World Bank's recent comprehensive 228 page report "Afghanistan's Drug Industry: Structure, Functioning, Dynamics, and Implications for Counter-Narcotics Policy" would deal with Turkey's role - particularly given that World Bank chief Paul Wolfowitz and most of the other neocons have substantial financial incentives for supporting Turkey.

You probably won't be surprised to learn that the dog didn't bark. Again.

Let's have a closer look at the title of the World Bank report: "Afghanistan's Drug Industry: Structure, Functioning, Dynamics, and Implications for Counter-Narcotics Policy"

Note that this isn't a report 'about Afghanistan' - but about the INDUSTRY - and given that Afghanistan supplies 90% of the global heroin market, we might expect to read in the report at least something about the major purchasers of Afghani product.We might even expect to learn something about the major traffickers. We might even expect to learn something about the major trafficking routes. Right?

In fact, the title of the report promises to look at the "Structure, Functioning, Dynamics, and Implications for Counter-Narcotics Policy" - and the report does pretend to cover many of these issues, using fancy terms like 'value chain analysis,' 'vertical price structure' and 'price margins at different stages' and so on - all the things that you'd expect to find in an industry analysis. However, the analysis is conducted primarily (with some notable, and telling, exceptions) on an 'in-country' basis - which is essentially meaningless for analysing a global industry. This World Bank report is akin to an attempt to understand the global soft-drink market by looking really, really closely at the logistics around Atlanta - and as Sibel suggests, the 'frame of reference' of this report is unlikely to be an accident, and is most likely an intentional attempt to whitewash Turkey's role in the heroin industry.

According to the State Deparment's Bureau for International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs' 2006 International Narcotics Control Strategy Report, Turkey is a key player in this industry:
Turkey

I. Summary.

Turkey is a major transit route for Southwest Asian opiates to Europe, and serves as a base and refining center for major narcotics traffickers and brokers.... While most of the heroin trafficked via Turkey is marketed in Western Europe, an increasing amount of heroin and opium also is smuggled from Turkey to the U.S., but not in quantities sufficient to have a significant impact on the U.S.

II. Status of Country

Turkey is a major transshipment point. Turkey is also a base of operations for international narcotics traffickers and associates trafficking in opium, morphine base, heroin, precursor chemicals and other drugs. The majority of these opiates originate in Afghanistan, and are ultimately trafficked to Western Europe. A smaller but still not insignificant amount of heroin is trafficked to the U.S. via Turkey... Turkish authorities continue to seize large amounts of heroin and precursor chemicals, such as acetic anhydride. It is estimated that multi-ton amounts of heroin are smuggled through Turkey each month. Some heroin is still being refined in Turkey.

[SNIP]

Drug Flow/Transit. Turkey remains a major route, refining center and storage, production and staging area, for the flow of heroin to Europe. Turkish-based traffickers and brokers operate in conjunction with narcotics smugglers, laboratory operators, and money launderers in and outside Turkey. They finance and control the smuggling of opiates to and from Turkey. Afghanistan is the source of most of the opiates reaching Turkey. Morphine and heroin base are smuggled overland from Afghanistan and Pakistan via Iran. Opiates and hashish also are smuggled to Turkey overland from Afghanistan via Turkmenistan, Azerbaijan, and Georgia. Traffickers in Turkey illegally acquire the heroin precursor chemical, acetic anhydride, from sources in Western Europe, the Balkans and Russia. For fiscal year 2004, 2,304 liters of acetic anhydride were seized in, or destined for, Turkey. Some criminal elements in Turkey reportedly have interests in heroin laboratories operating near the Iranian-Turkish border in Iran. Turkish-based traffickers control much of the heroin marketed to Western Europe.
That's quite straightforward - Turkey is a key player up and down the value chain - yet the comprehensive 228 page report from Paul Wolfowitz' World Bank essentially ignores Turkey's role using various mechanisms of sophistry and mendacity - just as Sibel predicted.

At least three quarters of all heroin sold in Western Europe comes from Turkey - 4 to 6 tons every month - yet the World Bank report mentions Turkey exactly... once!

Here's the reference, in all it's glory:
The large dealers in both Lashkar Gah city and Kandahar claimed that they deal directly with buyers in Pakistan, Turkey, the United Kingdom, and the United States.
That single reference to Turkey is all that the report could muster.

Why would Wolfowitz want to erase any mention of Turkey from his report?

Sibel says:
It is puzzling to observe that in reporting this major artery (Turkey) of terrorists’ funding, the U.S. mainstream media and political machine do not dare to go beyond the poppy fields of Afghanistan and the fairly insignificant low level Afghan warlords overseeing the crops. Think about it; we are talking about nearly $40 billion worth of products in the final stage. Do you believe that those primitive Afghan warlords, clad in shalvars, sporting long ragged beards, and walking with long sticks handle transportation, lab processing, more transportation, distribution, and sophisticated laundering of the proceeds? If yes, then think again. This multi billion-dollar industry requires highly sophisticated networks and people. So, who are the real lords of Afghanistan’s poppy fields?

[SNIP]

Since the 1950s Turkey has played a key role in channeling into Europe and the U.S. heroin produced in the "Golden Triangle" comprised of Afghanistan, Pakistan and Iran. These operations are run by mafia groups closely controlled by the MIT (Turkish Intelligence Agency) and the military. According to statistics compiled in 1998, Turkey’s heroin trafficking brought in $25 billion in 1995 and $37.5 billion in 1996. That amount makes up nearly a quarter of Turkey’s GDP. Only criminal networks working in close cooperation with the police and the army could possibly organize trafficking on such a scale. The Turkish government, MIT and the Turkish military, not only sanctions, but also actively participates in and oversees the narcotics activities and networks.

[SNIP]

We know that Al Qaeda and Taliban’s main source of funding is the illegal sale of narcotics. Based on all the reports, facts, and expert statements, we know that Turkey is a major, if not the top, player in the transportation, processing, and distribution of all the narcotics derived from the Afghan poppies, and as a result, it is the major contributing country to Al Qaeda. Yet, to date, more than five years into our over exhaustive ‘war on terror' propaganda, have we heard any mentioning of, any tough message to, any sanction against, or any threat that was issued and targeted at Turkey?
In other words, the Turkish 'Deep State' - which includes the Turkish government, mafia-types, terrorist types (including al-Qaeda), the Turkish military and the Turkish Intelligence Agency - are major players in the highly-profitable heroin trafficking business. These same Deep-State players are also in a key position to profit from military sales - and have 'co-opted' a bunch of neocons, congressmen, former congressmen, lobbyists, and 'dime-a-dozen generals' in the US.

Phil Giraldi carries the story a little further:
Turkey benefits from the relationship (with Israel & US) by securing general benevolence and increased aid from the US Congress - as well as access to otherwise unattainable military technology. The Turkish General Staff has a particular interest because much of the military spending is channeled through companies in which the generals have a financial stake, making for a very cozy and comfortable business arrangement. The commercial interest has also fostered close political ties, with the American Turkish Council, American Turkish Cultural Alliance and the Assembly of Turkish American Associations all developing warm relationships with AIPAC and other Jewish and Israel advocacy groups throughout the US.

Someone has to be in the middle to keep the happy affair going, so enter the neocons, intent on securing Israel against all comers and also keen to turn a dollar. In fact the neocons seem to have a deep and abiding interest in Turkey, which, under other circumstances, might be difficult to explain. Doug Feith's International Advisors Inc, a registered agent for Turkey in 1989 - 1994, netted $600,000 per year from Turkey, with Richard Perle taking $48,000 annually as a consultant. Other noted neoconservatives linked to Turkey are former State Department number three, Marc Grossman, current Pentagon Undersecretary of Defense for Policy Eric Edelman, Paul Wolfowitz and former congressman Stephen Solarz. The money involved does not appear to come from the Turkish government, and FBI investigators are trying to determine its source and how it is distributed. Some of it may come from criminal activity, possibly drug trafficking, but much more might come from arms dealing. Contracts in the hundreds of millions, or even billions of dollars provide considerable fat for those well placed to benefit.

Investigators are also looking at Israel's particular expertise in the illegal sale of US military technology to countries like China and India. Fraudulent end-user certificates produced by Defense Ministries in Israel and Turkey are all that is needed to divert military technology to other, less benign, consumers. The military-industrial-complex/neocon network is also well attested. Doug Feith has been associated with Northrup Grumman for years, while defense contractors fund many neocon-linked think tanks and "information" services. Feith, Perle and a number of other neocons have long had beneficial relationships with various Israeli defense contractors.
It appears that Mr Wolfowitz is interested in maintaining the neocon Turkish-gravy train. As Giraldi notes, the source of the gravy is apparently part heroin trafficking, part Military- Industrial- Complex (MIC). In fact, it might be difficult to disentangle these two sources of gravy - Turkey receives billions of dollars in military aid every year from the US, and the Turkish military and intelligence services "actively participates in and oversees the narcotics activities."

Wolfowitz, of course, has strong ties to many of the neocons who are directly on Turkey's payroll. He first teamed up with Richard Perle in 1969 to sell the antiballistic missile (ABM) system to Congress, before Wolfowitz joined Perle in Scoop Jackson's office in the 70s.

Both Wolfowitz and Feith have previously worked at MIC giant, Northrop Grumman.
When Wolfowitz was appointed Deputy Secretary at DoD in 2001, he convinced Rumsfeld to appoint Douglas Feith as Undersecretary for Policy (a position that Wolfowitz himself held from 1989-93), and then installed Feith as the head of the Office of Special Plans. (Perle & Feith have been working together since 1982)

Perle, Wolfowitz and Feith have all been investigated for leaking classified information to Israel - primarily to assist defense contractors in illegal arms sales. Perle's first foray was in 1969, Feith's was in 1972, and Wolfowitz' in 1978.

In fact, Perle, Wolfowitz and Feith (and other neocons such as Ledeen and Stephen Bryen) appear to have made 'secondary' careers out of trying to either eliminate arms controls treaties (e.g. Feith), or finding legal and other ways of circumventing export restrictions - such as by using fraudulent end-user certificates, or simply lying to Congress to ensure that the military sales continue as they did with Pakistan in Richard Barlow's case.

Curiously, this behaviour of the neocons - selling weapons to Pakistan, China and other 'enemy' countries - appears to run counter to the purported neocon goal of maintaining and extending American military supremacy. However, their actions always appear to dovetail quite closely with the desires of their MIC paymasters.



How does the report manage to ignore Turkey?

One trick used in the report is to simply ring-fence the analysis at Afghanistan's borders (and only selected borders at that) - for example, we learn that:
The border price for opium... was estimated as follows :
* estimated share of opium going to Iran: around 90 %
* estimates share of opium going to Pakistan: 6 %
* estimated share of opium going to Tajikistan: 4 %

The border price for heroin... is calculated as follows:
* estimated share of heroin going to Iran: 30 %
* estimated share of heroin going first to Pakistan (much of it onward to Iran): 50 %
* estimated share of heroin going to Tajikistan: 20 %
This is remarkable for a number of reasons.

Firstly, note that it's OK for the report to mention that the export of heroin to Pakistan is merely in transit to Iran, but apparently it's not OK to mention that the product in Iran is merely on it's way to safe-haven in Turkey where it will move into the 'industrialisation' phase to be processed and stored and prepared for mass export with the help of NATO in Belgium, and the Turkish Consulates in England, in Chicago, and elsewhere.

Again, from the State Department's own International Narcotics Control Strategy Report
A large share of the opiates smuggled into Iran from Afghanistan is smuggled to neighboring countries for further processing and transportation to Europe. Turkey is the main processing destination for these opiates, most of which are bound for consumption in Russia and Europe. Essentially all of the morphine base... in Iran, is likely moving towards Turkey...

Secondly, it's interesting that the World Bank report has 100% of the heroin being exported through Iran, Pakistan and Tajikistan. There's no mention of Uzbekistan, or Turkmenistan - which "are vital transit countries" according to Interpol. In fact, Sibel says that much of the heroin travels to Turkey from Afghanistan through the Central Asian states (Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, and Turkmenistan).

Another handy trick that the report uses to sidestep the issue of Turkey's involvement is to magically put most of the 'value chain' in a black box - whereby all transactions and 'value capture' between Afghanistan's borders and the wholesale level in the destination country are opaque.
IV. THE VERTICAL STRUCTURE OF OPIATE PRICES
Opium and its products dramatically increase in price along the "value chain" from
raw opium produced on rural farms in Afghanistan to local markets, wholesale trade, processing into heroin or morphine, trade in neighboring countries, transit to distant consuming countries, and ultimately wholesale and retail prices in these countries. The "vertical" structure of prices can provide clues about how the drug industry is organized and its evolution over time...

Vertical Price Structure
Although price data are relatively weak for the parts of the opium "value chain" after the farm-gate level and before reaching prices in distant consuming countries, it is possible to piece together a rough picture of the vertical price structure and in particular the price margins at different stages...
Indeed - a lot of that information would be very helpful. The price margins at each stage would demonstrate the obscene profits of 'The Real Lords of the Poppy Fields' - those who control the value-chain steps between the 'price takers' at the farm gate and those who supply the street dealers. But if the World Bank included that information in their report, they'd have to shine a light on Wolfowitz' friends in Turkey. We can't have that, of course, so instead we get 'analysis' which ignores all of the value-adding activity conducted in places like Turkey. For example:
Notice how the 7000% mark-up in between the first two steps is simply ignored - it almost appears to be a wilfull omission.


The report does acknowledge, in passing, that there might be some 'high pay-offs' in looking at the major players in between the farmers and retail end dealers - before deciding not to look at the major players:
The value chain for opium/opiates, while anchored in price-taking behavior at either end, appears to involve much more active price setting in the middle stages, where flexible adjustments to shocks (including law enforcement shocks) appear to be the norm. This is not surprising in view of the very large profit margins and relatively smaller number of actors at these stages. It would appear that, however difficult, attacking and disrupting the more secretive and concentrated middle stages of the value chain could have high pay-offs.
Of course, these 'middle stages' aren't really 'secretive' - and in fact are well known to both the UK and US governments (at least).

As Sibel notes:
In fact, our government would rather move heaven and earth, gag ‘whistleblowers’ with direct knowledge of these facts, classify congressional and other investigative reports, create a media black-out on these ‘allies’ terrorist supporting activities, than do the right thing; do what it really takes to counter terrorism.

And British journalist Adrian Gatton described the British awareness thusly:
The British authorities are well aware of Turkey’s role in the drugs trade. In a story I broke in The Guardian earlier this year, I explained how in the 1990s Baybasin told British Customs and Excise investigators about state collusion in the drugs trade. After initial meetings in London, according to a source, these two drug liaison officers – whose names are known to Druglink – later travelled regularly to Holland to meet Baybasin.

According to a witness statement given to an immigration case involving Baybasin’s family, Huseyin agreed to provide investigators with information about what he knew of the role of Turkish politicians and officials in the heroin trade. The contents of the discussions are not known in detail, but in a string of newspaper and TV interviews, he claimed he was assisted by Turkish officers working for NATO in Belgium. “The government kept all doors open for us,” he said. “We could do as we pleased.”

[SNIP]

Discussions with such a vital ally about its heroin problem have been tricky. When, for example, in 1997, Tom Sackville, the then UK Home Office minister, accused the Turkish government of being neck-deep in the drugs trade, he got a stiff demarche from the Turkish embassy (Sackville was speaking off-the-cuff and not following government policy). Our Foreign Office, rather than backing the minister, vented its fury on his department for meddling in foreign affairs, according to a source familiar with the row.

Sackville’s foray aside, the British government’s reluctance to publicly condemn Turkey has frustrated investigators. We got a rare public glimpse of this when, in 2001, Chris Harrison, a senior Customs officer in Manchester, told veteran crime reporter Martin Short in his TV series Godfathers, that Customs could not get at the Turkish kingpins because they are “protected” at a high level.
Nonetheless, Wolfowitz' report on the "Structure, Functioning, Dynamics, and Implications for Counter-Narcotics Policy" somehow managed to ignore Turkey's role despite the fact that Turkey is integral to each of those components.

How odd.

I'll let Sibel have the last word:
Curiously enough, despite these highly publicized reports and acknowledgements of Turkey’s role in these activities, Turkey continues to receive billions of dollars of aid and assistance annually from the United States. With its highly placed co-conspirators and connections within the Pentagon, State Department and U.S. Congress, Turkey never has to fear potential sanctions or meaningful scrutiny; just like Saudi Arabia and Pakistan. The criminal Turkish networks continue their global criminal activities right under the nose of their protector, the United States, and neither the catastrophe falling upon the U.S. on September Eleven, nor their direct and indirect role and ties to this terrorist attack, diminish their role and participation in the shady worlds of narcotics, money laundering and illegal arms transfer.
Sibel doesn't choose her words lightly.

Listen up.
---------

Update: feel free to search around my archives for Sibel related stuff - you can follow some of the links at the top right of the page. Also, my blog about Sibel's movie, Kill The Messenger is here.

dkos thread
DU thread

24 comments:

gary said...

Fantastic post. Also brings to mind Daniel Hopsicker's question: who are the American Drug Lords?

lukery said...

thnx gary

i get the sense that the american drug lords might have significant overlap with the afghan poppy lords...

Mizgîn said...

I second Gary's comment on the fantastic part. BIJÎT LUKERY!

I see you had a little Turkish denial on the DU thread. Not at all surprising. However rare they may be, there certainly are Turks who do not support this kind of thing, but actually work with us to fight it, and not only on a political level. After all, there are Turks in the mountains too.

I think it is fairly obvious why the guardians of the status quo continue to shield the general public from the reality of the Turkish state, and such shielding has nothing to do with serving the interests of the people, all of the people, in US, Turkey, Kurdistan, everywhere.

What I don't understand are those people who continue to defend the guardians of the status quo in the general population in the US. But, I suppose that boils down to a matter of ideological purity.

steven andresen said...

I am drawn back to considering the 9-11 murders. We were told that bin Laden organized these attacks out of Afghanistan, yet there was very little explaination how that was done. Here, we are told that Afghanistan is the center of the opium and drug trade going to Europe. However, the routes and the wherewithalls involving Turkey, for example, are not discussed.

If we can easily see that the U.S. intelligence services or some American crime organizations are behind the drug trade, why shouldn't we have the same question about 9-11?

The physics of the 9-11 bombings are confusing to me because I don't understand about how to demolish these buildings or operating these planes.

The motivations behind these attacks, are just as confusing, but it seems understanding the why's should be more important.

So, did we go to war with Afghanistan, despite the cooperation of the Taliban in the possible recovery of bin Laden because the Taliban were not supportive enough of American control of the poppy fields?

Did the United States support the Islamic resistance to the Russian occupation of Afghanistan in order to obtain control or to maintain control of opium production?

How much of our attack on Afghanistan was about drugs instead of bin Laden? After all, bin Laden has not been captured and the poppy fields under United States control have had record outputs.

If Afghanistan is about opium, and the Europeans are the one's whose populations suffer from this production, why haven't they exposed this fact? Are the elites in Europe making too much out of the drug trade to spend any effort protecting their own populations?

Would Turkey's involvement in the drug trade be exposed and the role of the United States crime organizations and corrupt politicians thwarted if Turkey became a member of the European Union? Or not?

Is the war on terrorism really a way to obscure the fact that American politicians and their benefactors are drug dealers?

I was under the impression that the stock market was kept from collapsing mostly by the influx of drug money laudered through American banks and investments. Is this true, and if so, wouldn't this be another motivation for 9-11? Was the attack part of a plan to maintain this kind of market manipulation?

I have questions, but at the moment, no answers.

damien said...

steven andreson, catherine austin fitts has been highlighting the influence of drugs on the larger economy. Awesome post Lukery. Thanks.

Anonymous said...

After Occupation of Afghanistan by the U.S. , Heroin and Drug-Traffic gain speed again...
It's a Fact.

lukery said...

Steven - lots of good questions... most of them have passed through my grey matter as well - usually without any resolution.

calipendence said...

Hmm... Seems we almost had a chat session going on on that DU thread a moment ago with Lukery, myself, and Sibel all going after that guy. Almost felt a little sorry for him... Nah! :)

lukery said...

mizgin - there's a lot more of that denial going on at the thread!

as for those who 'defend the guardians of the status quo' - i think driftglass called them the Drooling Thirties :-)

lukery said...

calipendence - he's a curious fellow. i w onder what his interest is

calipendence said...

Yes, it is curious... I need to get over to Turkey to get a feel how many people are like him vs. how many people are like Mizgin and Sibel these days... I'd like to think the latter group has a lot of people. They are the future of what would make a good part of the EU and the middle east down the road.

But as I noted to you in email, I'm even questioning my own past experiences these days, so I'm all ears for people giving us more info on what they perceive is going on! I wish this guy would put up some valid links instead of just getting into namecalling.

I really have hardly seen any people go after Sibel in this fashion before.

lukery said...

I really have hardly seen any people go after Sibel in this fashion before.

i think a lot of the rightwingers go after her and bring up some random stuff. there are a bunch of weird talking points abuot her - similar to the TP's about Plame that never seem to die: "she was never covert, VF spread, blah blah"

Mizgîn said...

HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAAAHAHAHAAA!!!

Oh, man, are you all in for it over at DU. Not that I feel badly for DU, because they banned me before I ever had the chance to post anything, but mark my words: You've only got one of them now, however, he's going to run off and get all of his ülkücü ("idealist" ie, Gray Wolf) buddies, and they are going to become like an infestation of rats on DU. Trust me, I've seen it happen SOOoooOOOoOOOoOO many times before.

This guy is typical. They start out acting rationally, thinking that their insistence will win you over to see the error of your ways. When that doesn't work, he will become increasingly more hysterical, and then you will all understand!

I am really offended, though, that the guy only referred to Greek and Armenian lies. What about Kurdish lies??!! And then he quotes Wiki on Sibel's background, like it's some HUGE revelation . . . hehehe, hilarious! WTF was that supposed to prove? And claims about national heritage as motivation for making up lies about the sacred Turkish state is a matter of psychological projection, because this is what the ülkücü do. It is their raison d'etre; it is the only thing they know and that's why this guy was using it against Sibel. I think Sibel would agree that this is the typical reaction and I'm surprised that it's taken so long for them to turn up on Lukery's posts.

The fact is, such accusations are big, stinky red herrings. Same kind of thing with the exaggeration of any facts and figures quoted . . . . like the part about the "huge proportion of 25%" which the guy expands to "all of Turkey is ruled by drug barons."

So typical.

And then, I don't know who else noticed, but the guy says this:


Do you blame me for infiltrating DU for certain purposes? I dont have an agenda There are certain claims made about my country, I just explain it and tell the truth.


So he says he inflitrates DU for "certain purposes," but claims not to have an agenda? Shame on you guys for not jumping on that SWEET contradiction. And then, he gets all his information from Turkish media which is INDEPENDENT? Jump on him again and press home the point that INDEPENDENT IS NOT EQUAL TO UNBIASED.

Don't be so nice to this freak.

By the way, this guy will NEVER come up with any sources to substantiate his bullshit, so NEVER bother to ask for it.

Unfortunately, Calipendence, you are not going to find so many who are like Sibel or me, except among Kurds or among Turkish intelligentsia. Think about the atmosphere over there. The propaganda is instilled through the education system and is reinforced by the media, so people think that it's normal. Like back during the 90's everyone thought that the entire world had military checkpoints every few kilometers on the roads because that was the reality. THAT was NORMAL.

Of course, for Western Turkey, there is access to world media, but the information comes into an environment in which the national mythology is overbearing. Besides, I have heard similar arguments and comments from Turks born of Turkish parents in the US. It's just like people in the US really believe that their government is trying to spread democracy throughout the entire world because this is what the media preaches and what is taught in schools.

The Turks that I know who have escaped this mind field are people that I adore and respect. I don't care that they are ethnic Turks because in their thinking and their actions, they transcend primitive nationalism and become truly human. They are, in my opinion, true Turks. They are the honor of Turkey and provide a model of what the Turkish state could become.

But that's a long way off.

damien said...

You travel fast Lukery. This post has already reached the letters pages of The Australian. Way to go!

lukery said...

D - i'll go far with a lot of help from my friends :-)

Mizgin - it sure was an interesting exercise. I'm sorry to hear that the kurds didnt get trashed too.

Actually - my sibel posts are remarkably free of trollish behaviour normally. i know that Sibel does get attacked by a certain group - but they usually leave me alone.

re "Do you blame me for infiltrating DU for certain purposes?" - i think that was just a poor choice of words - i think he was asking "are you accusing me of.... infiltrating ?"

starroute said...

There is a mystery for me about the military-industrial complex -- in large part because it's so faceless. It's regularly described on one hand as though it consisted of nothing more than massive corporations staffed by anonymous CEO's plus a pack of revolving-door former military officers -- and on the other as though it was a coherent conspiracy, consciously manipulating US domestic spending and foreign policy to its own ends.

It can't be both, can it? But if it isn't, then which? Can something like the military-industrial complex turn into a sort of super-organism, carefully maintaining its own existence and continued growth even without a guiding intellect? Or is there some sort of deliberate direction to the whole thing, fixed on certain definite goals and not merely stomping around and smashing things like Godzilla?

One thing I do know is that the military-industrial complex originally was born out of extreme right-wing Cold War politics. When Eisenhower warned against it, he wasn't just pointing out an abstract threat for the future. The military-industrial complex had been actively frustrating his policies during the last couple of years of his administration, starting after the launching of Sputnik and the invention of the missile gap.

The American Security Council was central to it at that point. There's an interesting blog post about all this at http://corrente.blogspot.com/2004_08_15_corrente_archive.html -- which is too long to quote in full, but the relevant section of which begins:

In 1958 ASC launched the Institute for American Strategy (IAS) for the purpose of further spreading Cold War political propaganda among the public, indoctrinating public policy "elites" and military personnel in the ideology of right wing think, emphasizing the importance of powerful military industrial complex interests and trying to convince anyone they could buttonhole that commies had infiltrated the master suites of government. ACS sponsored events such as the National Military Conferences which were essentially git-to-know-ya gatherings for Pentagon officials and National Security Council big wigs looking to hoot it up, share shrimp cocktails and exchange boing-eyed scare stories with corporate executives from such board rooms as United Fruit and Standard Oil.

Recall Eisenhower warning of the power of the military industrial complex -- these are the very people of whom he was speaking. The IAS was funded by the right wing Richardson Foundation (H. Smith Richardson) and administered by "political warfare" advocate/expert Frank Barnett and long time ASC member Col. William Kintner. IAS president was John M. Fisher. Barnett was research director for the Richardson Foundation as well. . . .

In 1962 Barnett co-founds (and becomes president) of the National Strategy Information Center. Others affiliated with or advising the NSIC over the years include Joseph Coors, Frank Shakespeare (Heritage Foundation) and former CIA director William J. Casey. As well as this feller right here ---- Prescott Bush.


The MIC bunch had things pretty much their own way through the 60's, but with the fading of the Cold War in the 70's, a change in direction became necessary. That was where George H.W. Bush's Team B came in -- with its connections to the old Cold Warriors of ASC and the Committee on the Present Danger on one hand and to the Neocons on the other. (Paul Wolfowitz was a leading advisor.) The immediate outcome was both a partial re-kindling of the Cold War, which continued through the 1980's, and the invention of the Great War on Terror as an increasingly important substitute for the Cold War.

The rogue CIA guys like Shackley and Clines were part of that nexus as well -- because of both their own Cold War fanaticism and their association with Bush -- and they were the ones who added in the drugs-and-arms connection.

That 1970's mix of obsessed generals, Neocons, and profiteering spooks -- with a few Bushes thrown in for flavoring -- is clearly at the root of much of what's wrong right now. But as I said in starting, it's the role of the big military contractors that perplexes me. Are they just in it for the money -- or is there a fanatical, xenophobic, perhaps Christianoid mindset behind them as well?

lukery said...

thnx starroute - fp'd
http://wotisitgood4.blogspot.com/2007/01/christianist-billionaires-heroin-and.html

calipendence said...

Mizgin, I know what you are saying about the propaganda there... I was there in Ankara in the late 60's early 70's and went to the American DOD school there (now it is an international school and not just for Americans). Even though small (around 350 students grades 7-12), it had turned out many prominent Americans over the years, actor Mitch Pileggi who played Skinner on the X Files, weapons inspector Scott Ritter, the woman author of the book that was the basis of the movie "A Beautiful Mind", cartoonist Buddy Hickerson of the Quigmans, etc. Though that school was a great school in many respects and I liked far more the quality and depth of education I got there than when I returned for high school in the U.S., it still had its big of propaganda in it, I'm sure that was to keep it in good relations with the Turkish government. We had a "Turkish Culture" teacher, though a very nice lady, who came in periodically to give us classes on Turkish Culture, and I'm darn sure that her curriculum was probably gone over with a fine toothed comb with the Turkish government before talking to us.

Most people avoided talking at all about the Kurds (or Armenians then), and I really didn't start studying that issue until I got to college, and have been challenged a lot more now to look at it by Armenians I work with every day. The unfortunate side of this is that there is propaganda and nationalistic fervor, rather than constructive rational dialogue, on both sides of the aisle that feed each other. I have no doubt that there are also perhaps many instances of Armenian groups buying influence with our politicians too, though we shouldn't speculate on that and go after those that we have far greater instances of evidence to point to wrongdoing with the Turks on the genocide ruling in congress than the other.

Just the other day, I found information on the web that calls into question on whether some close work colleagues of my fathers' perhaps had worked with the CIA or not both in Thailand and in Turkey. Though I knew there of a number of more detached set of aquaintances that were visibly in the CIA there in Turkey then, when rumors of that sort of thing get to be even closer to you personally, and in ways you never suspected, it does throw you for a loop, and makes you think even in more ways that starroute mentions here.

Dark said...

To understand how the MIC works is the same as understand how the illicit drug industry works. Making the environment safe for those in the industry benefits each of the players. Like the mob.. they sort of divide of the territory and run their businesses.

All the MIC players benefit from a war economy of large weapns sytems procurment. Like GE doesn't produce tires or radios... when they do cars lots of little guys (not little at all) share in the dough.

These guys don't need to have secret meetings to plane things. All they need to to is have their key guys on the take lobbying for their interests.. and of course these lobbyists are probably getting their swiss bank accounts topped up regularly.

The national security state is in on the drug business. The assist or let the product move cross border, and thwart the odd do gooder who is trying to shut it down. They play hardball and kill without a second thought... way too much money at stake and everyone is well paid.

The uber rich care less about the misery in society as long as it doesn't crash.. they can live in their gated estates, penthouses, private islands completely isolated from the rif raf. Retail politics is only a distraction to these guys... they are using the system to make off like mega bandits.

And the workers in the defense industry are all flag waving patriots and love their jobs and hate whomever they are told to. The punters are too stupid and naive to believe that they are just ants or drones and mean nothing to the corporate masters.

Feudalism died in the Renaissance and liberty equalite and fraternite was what we all belived in. The uber wealthy would have nothing of thius type of socialism where their wealth was stripped and given to the people.

Iras was nothing more than a way to pump a trillion or more $$ into the MIC... it's not going to soldier's pay. They also want play with the rigged oil markets of the ME and the religious nuts want to protect Israel.

It is very easy for some nasty people to align all these nefarious interests and get the dumb people on board.

The media is owned by the MIC with interlocking boards. We do not live in a democracy, but a corporatocracy which is all about exploitation or resources and labor for their "wealth" creation.

The only real chance for revolution will be economic collapse. The people are out gunned and any insurection will be branded islamic terrorism and crush with the full might of the MIC.

Good news is that the economy WILL collapse soon. The house of cards, ponzi scheme is going to fall... sooner than later. Everyone will hurt bad.

What a waste...

Anonymous said...

Well interesting information coming out.

There are bites of truth here and there but there are inconsistences regarding some basic information that can be obtained from open sources.

Such as the annual US aid to Turkey. Ms Edmonds claims that the iad amounts to billions of dollars annually. as far as I know this amount s around 400 million $. not even close to a billion. and it is attached to several conditions which Turkey does not bother to comply for this small amount of money.

So I suggest some scepticism about this lady.

On the other hand, the interesting thing about the Baybasin family in UK that the British government protects this guy who surrently runs the drug smuggling operations from London.

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Anonymous said...

^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^

You know these drug moneys are all going back to america turkey is just one of the distributors but at the end of the day its the americans who keeps the money. Be more clever guys open your eyes and you will see the reality.

^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^

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