Partnership with the CIA
The Dalai Lama with the Tibetan Guerrillas
Of all the lies that surround the Dalai Lama, surely the greatest is that he is a champion of non-violence. This aspect of the image that he likes to portray of himself and with which he has mesmerised the media and much of the world is actually just another part of the myth.
The truth of the matter is that from the mid-1950s through to the mid-1970s there was an active and violent Tibetan resistance movement that was funded by the CIA.
The CIA Tibetan Activity consists of political action, propaganda, and paramilitary activity […] The cost of the Tibetan Program for FY 1964 can be summarized in approximate figures as follows:
a. Support of 2100 Tibetan guerrillas based in Nepal–$ 500,000
b. Subsidy to the Dalai Lama–$ 180,000
c. [1 line of source text not declassified] (equipment, transportation, installation, and operator training costs)–$ 225,000
d. Expenses of covert training site in Colorado–$ 400,000
f. Black air transportation of Tibetan trainees from Colorado to India–$ 185,000
g. Miscellaneous (operating expenses of [less than 1 line of source text not declassified] equipment and supplies to reconnaissance teams, caching program, air resupply–not overflights, preparation stages for agent network in Tibet, agent salaries, etc.)–$ 125,000
h. Educational program for 20 selected junior Tibetan officers– $ 45,000
Document 337, Foreign Relations of the United States, 1964 – 1968, Volume xxx, China
Declassified State Department Document
When the drill bored down toward the stony fissures
and plunged its implacable intestine
into the subterranean estates,
and dead years, eyes of the ages,
imprisoned plants’ roots
and scaly systems
became strata of water,
fire shot up through the tubes
transformed into cold liquid,
in the customs house of the heights,
issuing from its world of sinister depth,
it encountered a pale engineer
and a title deed.
However entangled the petroleum’s arteries may be,
however the layers may change their silent site
and move their sovereignty amid the earth’s bowels,
when the fountain gushes its paraffin foliage,
Standard Oil arrived beforehand
with its checks and it guns,
with its governments and its prisoners.
Their obese emperors from New York
are suave smiling assassins
who buy silk, nylon, cigars
petty tyrants and dictators.
They buy countries, people, seas, police, county councils,
distant regions where the poor hoard their corn
like misers their gold:
Standard Oil awakens them,
clothes them in uniforms, designates
which brother is the enemy.
the Paraguayan fights its war,
and the Bolivian wastes away
in the jungle with its machine gun.
A President assassinated for a drop of petroleum,
a million-acre mortgage,
a swift execution on a morning mortal with light, petrified,
a new prison camp for subversives,
in Patagonia, a betrayal, scattered shots
beneath a petroliferous moon,
a subtle change of ministers
in the capital, a whisper
like an oil tide,
and zap, you’ll see
how Standard Oil’s letters shine above the clouds,
above the seas, in your home,
illuminating their dominions.
Translated by Jack Schmitt
Speaking from inside a bin to protect his identity, Mossad agent Golan Aharoni ejected a small pebble from his hiding place, claiming it was a ‘key component’ in Iran’s gravity-powered weapon.
Aharoni described how the meteorite was first spotted on Google Earth, which led to a mission to investigate further, using their most discreet methods of bombing.
“Everywhere we looked, we uncovered more and more rock”, said Aharoni.
“This proves they’re developing a meteorite roughly the size of Iran.”
Iran’s Meteorite program
While Iran lacks a missile capable of delivering itself from space, Aharoni warned other world leaders that it wasn’t just Israel that was at risk.
“We also discovered smaller meteorites that could be hidden in a suitcase”, he claimed.
To emphasise the threat, Mossad has made a video of a meteorite simulation, in which a cheesecake is smashed to pieces by a man with a hammer.
“Imagine that the hammer is a rock, and then imagine that the imaginary rock is a theoretical meteorite, roughly 800 miles across”, suggested Aharoni.
“I don’t know about you, but I quite like cheesecake, so these bastards must be stopped.”
Israel is looking to develop its own meteorite as a deterrent, once they find a piece of land suitable for stripping of all life and then wiping off the map.
“We’ve been working on it for some time”, admitted Aharoni. “Somewhere about the size of Palestine should do it.”
Dying man couldn’t make up his mind which place to go to — both have their advantages, “heaven for climate, hell for company!”
– Mark Twain‘s Notebooks and Journals, vol. 3
Singing hymns and waving palm branches through all eternity is pretty when you hear about it in the pulpit, but it’s as poor a way to put in valuable time as a body could contrive.
– Captain Stormfield’s Visit to Heaven – Mark Twain
Heaven goes by favor. If it went by merit, you would stay out and your dog would go in.
– Mark Twain, a Biography
On the 20th of April 2010, the Deepwater Horizon oil rig blew out in the Gulf of Mexico, killing eleven men instantly, then destroying 600 miles of coastline. On 9 September 2010, a natural gas pipeline exploded in San Bruno, California, burning eight to death, one of several recent pipeline explosions in the USA. In 1992, in Chicago, a gas pipe leaked and 18 houses exploded, incinerating three people.
What do these deaths have to do with plans for “fracking” for natural gas in Ireland?
Everything. It was my job to investigate these three explosions, the Deepwater Horizon and California explosions as a reporter for the UK Channel 4’s Dispatches, the earliest as a US government investigator. In all three cases, the deaths were preceded by the same reassurances about the safety of drilling and piping that I read now in the debate about fracking in Ireland.
First, the Deepwater Horizon. Eleven men died when the ‘mud’ – drilling cement meant to cap the wellhead – failed and methane gas blew out the top of the pipes and exploded. The Shannon Basin is not the Gulf of Mexico, but your safety will be just as dependent on Halliburton’s mud.
Can we trust Halliburton’s reassurances? The owners of the Deepwater Horizon have told a US court that they’ve discovered that Halliburton hid critical information that the well cement could fail. Halliburton denies the cover-up. But cover-up or not, the cement failed as it has several times recently in the US in wells drilled for fracking. In all cases, including the contamination of water supplies in Pennsylvania (where some residents could set their tap water alight with a match), drilling was preceded by mollifying studies indicating that all was safe. But they failed to see all the looming dangers.
In Ireland, you haven’t even done the studies. The University of Aberdeen study for the Irish Environmental Protection Agency has been played as some kind of endorsement for charging ahead with fracking in Ireland – but this is not the case if you actually read the study. The University study is, in fact, a long series of warnings that proposed drilling methods, the local geology and the potential impacts on water quality all require studies not even begun. It also points to the necessity of creating a regulatory system not now in place which can cope with watching thousands of explosive, toxic well-sites.
The Shannon river basin is a truly eyebrow-raising place to blindly drill thousands of wells. It’s located in proximity to one of Irelands few major aquifers (your drinking water supply) and the drilling will be relatively shallow. Where I live in the State of New York, the government, though a major booster of fracking, has banned the fracking of shallow shale deposits and banned the process from all locations near our aquifers. The US experience is not comforting.
Horizontal fracking (as proposed for Irish deposits) requires explosive charges to be fired along miles of pipe underground (and under houses and water supplies) followed by the pumping of fluids at high pressure through these pipes. The result has been man-made earthquakes. Buildings don’t fall down, but cracks bring hydrocarbon poisons into the aquifers. In the vast uninhabited wastes of the American Dakotas, we simply abandon water systems. Where in Ireland can you do that?
And then there are the pipelines. The fracked gas doesn’t get to market by carrier pigeon. Ireland has had virtually no discussion of the difficulties, danger and cost of running hundreds, and ultimately, thousands of miles of gathering pipes. I’ve been investigating the horror of pipeline explosions for three decades now and the problem is exponentially worsened by the new web of lines created by fracking. Highly explosive transport systems require an elaborate system of on-site government regulation which Ireland does not have and cannot now afford. And it’s simply too easy for the PIGs to cheat.
A PIG is a Pipeline Inspection Gauge, a robot that looks like a mechanical porker with wire whiskers that crawls through pipes hunting for corrosion, cracks, leaks and trouble. When the PIG ’squeals’, the pipes must be dug up and replaced. And that’s frightfully expensive.
It especially frightens the executives who have to pay for pipe replacement. So, what I’ve found and reported is that the providers of software and its users are aware that the PIGs’ diagnostic computer code, which converts the squeals of the PIG into warnings, has flaws which understate dangers. And the results have been horribly predictable: Despite the reassuring noises from the PIGs, pipes have leaked, polluted, exploded and killed.
Is there a safe way to frack? Probably: but not profitably; and certainly not within the geology of a little emerald isle. I am weary of appearing at scenes of death and destruction when cement fails, pipes crack and tremors spew poisons only to hear a gas or oil company executive’s PR flack issue an apology. I doubt those apologies will sound better in Gaelic.
Re-prints permitted with credit to the author.
Greg Palast is the author of Vultures’ Picnic (Penguin 2011), which centers on his investigation of BP, bribery and corruption in the oil industry. Palast, whose reports are seen on BBC-TV and Britain’s Channel 4.
The family of a US intelligence agent that mysteriously died in 1953 has filed a lawsuit that accuses the CIA of committing murder.
The sons of deceased CIA officer Frank Olson allege in a lawsuit this week that their father was killed on the job nearly 60 years ago, despite the Central Intelligence Agency’s lost-standing claim that the death was a suicide.
Frank Olson was found dead outside the New York City Statler Hotel after what was originally described as a jump from the thirteenth floor carried out by his own accord. In 1975, a government report was made public that revealed Olson had been given LSD by his employers as part of a top-secret behavioral engineering project dubbed MKULTRA beforehand, and the drug has since been blamed for his alleged suicide. In the decades since, however, the case has been called into question due to a number of peculiarities, including how closely the alleged cover-up in the years since has come eerily close to the agency’s own policies.
“The circumstances surrounding the death mirrored those detailed in an assassination manual that, upon information and belief, the CIA had drafted that same year,” Scott Gilbert, a lawyer for the Olsons, writes in the complaint filed this week.
CIA spokesperson Preston Golson tells Bloomberg News that he cannot comment on a pending court case specifically, but suggests that the agency stands by their explanation.
“CIA activities related to MK-ULTRA have been thoroughly investigated over the years, and the agency cooperated with each of those investigations,” Golson said. “In addition, tens of thousands of pages related to the program have been declassified and released to the public.”
According to the complaint filed by sons Eric and Nils Olson, though, there is more to the story — just days before Frank Olson’s death, he allegedly informed a colleague that he had ethical concerns regarding the agency’s conduct and had planned to resign. That colleague, Vincent Ruwet, then accompanied the agent along with a CIA scientist to New York City so that Olson could see a doctor. There an allergist prescribed him sedatives and the alleged suicide occurred shortly thereafter.
When Olson was discovered dead, either Ruwet or the CIA scientist responsible for giving him LSD, Robert Lashbrook, made a phone call to an agency higher-up to inform them of the death.
“Well, he’s gone,” one person allegedly told the other in a phone call conversation included in the complaint.
“That’s too bad’,” the other responded.
According to a report this week published by Bloomberg, Eric and Nils Olson believe their father’s closed-casket funeral further covered-up the fact that Frank Olson had been bludgeoned by CIA agents before being tossed from the window. A 1994 investigation later all but confirmed that allegation, the complaint reads.
The New York District Attorney’s Office reclassified the cause of Olson’s death from “suicide” to “unknown” during the late 1990s. Now once again his sons are demanding they be told the truth.
Shashank Tripathi on the left of picture
NEWSER) – A Twitter user who spread false information as superstorm Sandy battered New York City has been unmasked by Buzzfeed as the campaign manager for Christopher Wright, the Republican House candidate from New York’s 12th congressional district. Among the rumors started by hedge fund manager Shashank Tripathi, using the name “ComfortablySmug,” were that all power in Manhattan was being shut down and that the New York Stock Exchange had flooded.
Tripathi’s rumors spread widely and were reported by several media outlets, forcing utility and transportation officials dealing with the crisis to take time out to deny them. Tripathi, who hung up on journalists requesting comment, has now tweeted a “sincere, humble and unconditional apology” for his “irresponsible and inaccurate” tweets and has resigned from the Wright campaign.
Lower Manhattan goes dark during hurricane Sandy, on Monday, as seen from Brooklyn, N.Y. Sandy continued on its path Monday, as the storm forced the shutdown of mass transit, schools and financial markets, sending coastal residents fleeing, and threatening a dangerous mix of high winds and soaking rain.
John Minchillo / AP
Water floods the Ground Zero construction site on Monday in New York after Sandy came ashore to the south.
Vehicles are submerged on 14th Street near the Consolidated Edison power plant, Monday, in New York.
Rising water, caused by Sandy, rushes into a subterranean parking garage, Monday, in the Financial District of New York City.
Here’s another shot that is said to be 14th Street and Avenue C:
Fire fighters evaluate the scene of an apartment building which had the front wall collapse due to Hurricane Sandy on October 29, 2012 in New York, United States. Hurricane Sandy, which threatens 50 million people in the eastern third of the U.S., is expected to bring days of rain, high winds and possibly heavy snow. New York Governor Andrew Cuomo announced the closure of all New York City will bus, subway and commuter rail service as of Sunday evening.
ATLANTIC CITY, N.J. — Superstorm Sandy slammed into the New Jersey coastline and hurled a record-breaking 13-foot surge of seawater at New York City on Monday, roaring ashore after washing away part of the Atlantic City boardwalk and putting the presidential campaign on hold.
Just before its centre reached land, the storm was stripped of hurricane status, but the distinction was purely technical, based on its shape and internal temperature. It still packed hurricane-force wind, and forecasters were careful to say it remained every bit as dangerous to the 50 million people in its path.
The National Hurricane Center announced at 8 p.m. that Sandy had come ashore near Atlantic City. The sea surged a record of nearly 13 feet at the foot of Manhattan.
Lower manhattan. Bye bye wall streetpic.twitter.com/bGGf2oxg
In an attempt to lessen damage from the storm, New York City’s main utility cut power to about 6,500 customers in lower Manhattan. Authorities worried that seawater would seep into the New York subway and cripple it, along with the electrical and communications systems that are vital to the nation’s financial centre.
As it closed in, Sandy knocked out electricity to more than 1.5 million people and figured to upend life for tens of millions more. It smacked the boarded-up big cities of the Northeast corridor, from Washington and Baltimore to Philadelphia, New York and Boston, with stinging rain and gusts of more than 85 mph (135 kph).
As it made its way toward land, it converged with a cold-weather system that turned into a fearsome superstorm, a monstrous hybrid consisting not only of rain and high wind but of snow. Forecasters warned of 20-foot (66-feet) waves bashing into the Chicago lakefront and up to 3 feet of snow in West Virginia.
LEADING ECONOMISTS were told at the weekend about a study that details a separate tax for saturated fat, added sugar and salt, and concludes that a levy on all three could generate €188 million a year for the exchequer.
Authors Maria Murray of Trinity College Dublin and Micheál Collins of the Nevin Economic Research Institute told the gathering including economists attached to government departments that the direct effect on consumers would be quite small. But it could lead suppliers to reduce fat and added sugar and salt in products.
The cash generated could be used for health promotion campaigns. The economists’ warning to Government was: “There will be no effect other than revenue unless you spend the revenue on generating change.”
The tax on saturated fat would cost consumers an average of 93 cent a week, while added sugar would add €1.10 a week to weekly shopping costs. And the levy for added salt would be a humble 15 cent a week.
A tax on saturated fat alone could generate €79.91 million, while taxing added sugar could be worth up to €95.1 million with a salt tax yielding €13.08 million. For individual consumers it would mean a 5 cent increase on a pack of butter, 3 cent on a half kilo of cheddar cheese, 3 cent on a chocolate bar and 5 cent on a two-litre bottle of cola.
Such a tax would follow the example already set by New York state, which introduced a levy on saturated fat, Ms Murray told the Dublin Economics Workshop conference in Galway. Denmark last year imposed a tax on products with more than 2.3 per cent saturated fat. Hungary has introduced a salt levy, she said.
Ibec’s Food and Drink Industry Ireland group last week spoke out against a fat tax when it met the Oireachtas health committee. The group said it was a simplistic solution that would have little impact on diet.
However, Ms Murray said Minister for Health Dr James Reilly had signalled his interest in introducing such a tax in December’s budget, since 61 per cent of Irish adults are overweight or obese and 20 per cent of children likewise. Some 2,000 premature deaths occur annually, costing the State €4 billion a year. Figures from 2003 show in-patient hospital costs for obesity-related illnesses were €30 million.
It would not be a complicated tax, Mr Collins assured a Department of the Taoiseach representative who expressed concern about the burden applying the levy would impose on business: “Either you have saturated fat or you don’t. If you do it is taxed at one level or another level.”