Saturday, November 25, 2006

Litvinenko's Jewish Connection

The Washington Post reports Russian allegations that poisoned KGB spy Alexander Litvinenko was connected to Boris Berezovsky, one of the most wealthy Russian billionaires, who now lives in Britain. The book The Oligarchs by David Hoffman says that Berezovsky, like imprisoned Yukos billionaire Mikhail Khordokovsky, was Jewish and suffered from anti-Semitic discrimation during his career as a scientist in Russia. An article in the British Independent newspaper reports that after he moved to Britain, Litvinenko "was quickly submerged into Berezovsky's circle of influential emigrés."

The same Independent article reports that Alex Goldfarb, who was seen being interviewed on several TV reports about Litvinenko, is a biochemist who is the director of a human rights group set up by Berezovsky in 2000. Goldfarb sounds pretty Jewish. Furthermore, the article states that public relations for Litvinenko were being handled by Lord Tim Bell, who handles public relations for Berezovsky (and Margaret Thather). While Tim Bell doesn't sound Jewish, he was a big shot at the Saatchi & Saatchi public relations firm, which was founded by Maurice Saatchi, a Jew born in Baghdad, Iraq, and a current member of the British Conservative Party's shadow government. After leaving Saatchi, Tim Bell founded his own public relations firm. He has recently been an adviser to Iraq on the promotion of democracy.

Friday, November 24, 2006

Impact of US Recognition of India's Nuclear Status

The Senate has passed legislation implementing the agreement reached by the Bush administration to legitimize India's nuclear program and allow nuclear cooperation. One the political side, it helps align India with US policy vis-a-vis China and possibly Iran One the non-proliferation side, it abandons the principles of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, which should penalize countries that develop nuclear weapons capability outside the international framework. The BBC reports that while there is strong bipartisan support for the agreement, there is also strong opposition from the non-proliferation community.

In related developments, the Israeli newspaper Haaretz reports that Israel may follow India's lead and have its nuclear program legitimized by making one of its facilities open to inspectors while retaining the secrecy of another as a military facility. Meanwhile, China and Pakistan are negotiating Chinese assistance to Pakistan's nuclear program, according to the Financial Times. This would be China's balance of power move to offset America's nuclear alliance with India.

Friday, November 17, 2006

Judith Miller's Bias

It never occurred to me until I read this recent article in the Washington Post that Judith Miller, the New York Times reporter who went to prison to protect her sources, most of whom leaked information favorable to the Bush Administration, was Jewish. This posting by Alfred Lilienthal indicates that she is and that she was inclined to push an Israeli line in her reporting:

New York Times columnist Judith Miller has been known to direct her considerable reportorial skills to support the perceptions of some of her co-religionists in the US Jewish mainstream. It was she who printed Solarz's reference to a "Middle East Munich, " after having reported a change of mind by President Bush "in trying to cajole the man he had called 'Hitler revisited'." Her articles seldom ignore an opportunity to conjure up the Nazi spectre. Recently, she authored a lengthy book, One by One by One: Facing the Holocaust, based on interviews with European survivors of the Nazi horrors. Describing her book as not about the Holocaust, but "only how it is remembered, " Miller readily admits in her preface that "American Jews have a practical stake in keeping memory of the Holocaust alive, as a way of maintaining American support for Israel."

She apparently has a stake herself in incessantly pricking the Christian conscience so as to bring about what, for her and her newspaper, is the correct perspective toward the Middle East conflict. Undaunted by the prospect of a war in which thousands of Iraqis and her fellow Americans might die needlessly, she, like Kissinger and Solarz, is set on a violent solution. For her, no Holocaust would be good enough for Saddam Hussain or for the Palestinians!

Unfortunately, stuff like this reinforces my belief that the war in Iraq was a Jewish inspired war. In trying to find out more about this allegation, I also ran into reports (particularly this from the Jerusalem Post) that Lewis Libby, presumably her main source of information favorable to the Administration and the war in Iraq, is Jewish.

Adding Judith Miller and Lewis Libby to the mix that already includes Richard Perle, William Kristol, Paul Wolfowitz and many other Jews, the Iraq war really begins to look like it was started by a Jewish conspiracy. But if Jews are so smart, why did they start a war that in the short to medium term appears to strengthen Israel's enemies? So far the main beneficiary of the war in Iraq is Iran. It's possible that if the internecine bloodletting among the Shiites, Sunnis and Kurds becomes more severe, it could make the whole Muslim world forget about Israel, or weaken them so much that they present less of a threat to Israel, but that seems like a big gamble.

Bush did not come in as a foreign policy President or a military leader. So, maybe for the Jewish hawks (or Vulcans) Iraq just presented itself as a target of opportunity after 9/11. Bush felt he needed to do something strong after 9/11, and he already wanted to one-up his father on Iraq by getting rid of Saddam, which his father had failed to do. Rove told him that wars are good for getting re-elected (which was true). The Bush 41-Saddam failure may have been the hook for the Jews' getting Bush 43 to invade Iraq, while there was no similar hook for Iran, although Iran may have posed a greater threat to both Israel and the US. That assumes, of course, that there was some real conspiracy or cabal, which there may not have been. But the vaunted influence of AIPAC and other American Jewish political groups and think tanks, which appear more prone to hawkish group-think than Israeli Jews, lends some credence to the idea.

The Washington Post article that prompted me to look into Judith Miller's background said:
Miller testified that she flew to Israel in 1993 after reading about Salah's arrest and contacted aides to Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin, whom she described as a longtime friend....

Defense attorneys repeatedly tried to portray her as biased in favor of Israel.

"Have you ever been used as a Mossad asset?" asked Salah's attorney, Michael Deutsch, referring to the Israeli intelligence service.

Miller said no.

Monday, November 13, 2006

Is Condi One of the Good Guys?

This article in the NYT gives the impression that Condi Rice and SecDef Rumsfeld were not able to work together, but maybe she and Defense nominee Bob Gates can. I think that's a false interpretation of history, although one that Condi would certainly like. As National Security Adviser she almost always took Rumsfeld's side against SecState Colin Powell. Now that she is all dovey at State, she would like everyone to think that she has always been one. But she was a vicious hawk at the NSC. Iraq is her baby as much as Rumsfeld's.

I'm pleased she has had a change of heart, but I worry that it's not genuine. She can tell which way the wind is blowing, and she's going along with it. When a little wisdom and backbone would have been important, two or three years ago, she didn't have it. It would be interesting to know what role she played in stabbing Rummy in the back. She certainly has turned out to be the survivor of the various Vulcans (named for her hometown of Birmingham, Alabama) in the administration. It's not because of how well she ran the foreign and defense policy of the US at the NSC, but rather how well she played the game of bureaucratic infighting. She has the blood of more than 100,000 dead Iraqis on her hands, not to mention that of more than 2,000 US troops.

Friday, November 10, 2006

Jews Not Monolithic

Because of my concern about Jews role in instigating the Iraq war, I may have been too hard on Jews in general. My main concern is for Republican Jews, e.g., William Kristol, Richard Perle, Paul Wolfowitz. I worry that they are more loyal to Israel than to the US. They think they are loyal to the US, because they think that Israel's interests and America's interests are identical, but I don't think they are.

Democratic Jews, Robert Rubin, George Soros, for example, have been a force for good. So, maybe it's more important whether they are Democrats or Republicans, rather than whether they are Jews or Gentiles. Rubin did a good job as Treasury Secretary under Clinton. I expect that Henry Paulson, a Gentile, will also do a good job, but he takes over after a poor job by Snow, and in the face of poor economic policies, e.g., huge deficits and unwarranted tax cuts for the very rich, carried out for years by this administration.

Rumsfeld Defender Is Prominent Jew

The PBS Newshour had a discussion of Rumsfeld's tenure as Defense Secretary on Thursday night. The two discussants were Dov Zakheim and Lawrence Korb. Dov Zakheim, who was comptroller of the Pentagon, is also a Jewish rabbi. Interestingly, when you search for Rabbi Zakheim on Yahoo or Google, links come up to his Wikipedia entry, so that at some time the entry contained the word "rabbi," but when you look at the entry now, it no longer contains the word. So, somebody has taken "rabbi" out. But Aljazeera and some other web sites devoted to worrying about Jews in government, like me I suppose, also have it. According to the latter web site, he is a dual Israeli-American citizen; so, how did he get the security clearances necessary to work at such a high level in the Pentagon?

Anyway, my point is that the Rumsfeld Pentagon has been so dominated by Jews that the best person PBS could find to defend him was Zakheim, an Israeli rabbi. Couldn't they find a Protestant American to defend him, since Rumsfeld is, as far as I know, a Protestant American? I am concerned that Rumsfeld just turned the Pentagon over to Israeli interests (Perle, Wolfowitz and company), who started the war in Iraq to help secure Israel and sent a bunch of Christian soldiers to fight it. Now that it may have actually decreased Israeli security, Perle, Adelman and company are distancing themselves from the war in the upcoming Vanity Fair.

Monday, November 06, 2006

MTCR White Paper

This is a background paper on the MTCR, which interests me since I used to work on the MTCR, and was one of the creators of it (maybe in the same sense that Al Gore created the Internet). Anyway, when you go back to the 1980s and the early 90s, I was there, for better or worse. It would have been a better agreement if not for the opposition of Richard Perle's offices. But since it is about the only non-proliferation agreement around covering missiles, it's still in use.

Neocon Regrets

In the new issue of Vanity Fair, several neocons come out with their regrets about the war in Iraq and their contempt for George Bush and Donald Rumsfeld. Interestingly all the neocons interviewed appear to be Jewish, except perhaps for Frank Gaffney, an acolyte of Perle's, who apparently writes a weekly column for Jewish World Review.

This appears to be an example of, "Success has many fathers, but failure is an orphan." I find it particularly galling, that the person most responsible for the Iraq debacle, Paul Wolfowitz, goes on leading the World Bank. This is much better for him than the Presidential medals that his colleagues Tenet, Franks, and Bremer got, while he deserves much worse.

In a way, I feel sorry for Bush, because he is such a midget in the job of President. He has neither the education nor the moral character for the job. If he is not stupid, then he is lazy, which is worse. However, he didn't want to the war on terror President, he wanted to be the education president or the tax-cut president. The first real war he ran into, Vietnam, he ran from. We should not have a coward leading America when it is attacked by anybody.

Of course, I don't really believe that there is a "war" on terror, any more than there is or was a "war" on poverty or a "war" against organized crime. We did start a war against Iraq, and we appear to be losing it.

We'll see what happens in tomorrow's elections. While it may be something of a referendum on the war, it does not allow people to vote on those who might be the best leaders to get us out of the war -- Chuck Hegel, John McCain, Joe Biden, John Warner. We don't need a plan so much as we need intelligent, courageous, well intentioned, patriotic leaders. They are sadly lacking in this our hour of need. Of course, Iraq is a little war, and we can walk away from it without too much loss to the US, although it will have been devastating for Iraq.

Saturday, November 04, 2006

Draft Congress

This Rosa Brooks column in the LA Times straightens out some details about where our troops in Iraq come from. I may have been too pessimistic about their educational status. She says almost almost all are high school graduates, although this is not too great a recommendation in these days of poor high schools. Furthermore, she says most come from families with more than average income, but that there is an almost complete cutoff at $60,000. None come from families with incomes of more than $60,000. And although many, mainly officers, have college educations, almost none come from elite universities, like Harvard.

As a draftee in the Vietnam war, I think a cross-section is important to the military. It would help prevent torture, and other evils sometimes committed by today's troops who come from less advantaged backgrounds. Of course, this administration encourages them to torture, but now torture is delegated mainly to CIA agents, who are probably even better educated than military troops.

I am hoping that this election will be something of a political earthquake that will return us to traditional American values. I would be very pleased to see Rumsfeld go. For one thing, Rumsfeld hates the troops. He loves Star Wars missiles and stuff like that, and he likes special forces troops, but hates regular GIs, who bear the brunt of the fighting in Iraq and almost every other war.

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Rumsfeld's Surrender

In hindsight, SecDef Rumsfeld surrendered to the Iraq insurrection way back, when just after the US reached Baghdad and the looting started, he said "Stuff happens." That was the beginning of the end. The US should have cracked down right then, hard. Our failure to do so was a sign of weakness that led us to the morass we are in today.

When we heard about what was going on then -- looting antiquities, burning files in ministries, stealing office equipment -- it didn't sound right. The invasion should have been accompanied by law and order. Instead, law and order broke down right away. And it's only been getting worse since then. What was anybody in power thinking when that happened? We were supposed to be introducing democracy. Democracy doesn't look like anarchy. The generals, Rumsfeld, Bush, Cheney, they all should have known that something was wrong. The mission had not been accomplished.

Are US Troops Top Notch? Send the Bush Girls!

Kerry is trying to back away from his remarks about the educational level of US troops, according to the Washington Post. Kerry claims he was talking about Bush's poor education, not the troops, but Bush had a good education -- boarding school, Yale, Harvard MBA. Either he is stupid and graduated because of his family connections, or he's not stupid, but acts like he is. On the other hand, because of difficulty filling the ranks, the Pentagon continually reduces the standards for accepting new recruits.

The poor educational and cultural level of the troops is no doubt linked to the atrocities at Abu Ghraib and the various murders and rapes that are being investigated. We have the best troops that our trailer parks and Wal Mart customers can supply.

If Bush thinks the war in Iraq is so crucial to US survival, why haven't his own daughters joined one of the services and gone to Iraq? If that's the highest calling there is, as he claims, why shouldn't they go? He can't even convince them that the war is important.