Tuesday, December 30, 2008
Whenever I hear the words "conspiracy theory" (which seems more often, lately) it usually means someone is getting too close to the truth...
Whenever I hear the words "conspiracy theory" (which seems more often, lately) it usually means someone is getting too close to the truth...!
January 10, ...-Just before his death, James Jesus Angleton,
the legendary chief of counterintelligence at the Central
Intelligence Agency, was a bitter man. He felt betrayed by
the people he had worked for all his life.
In the end, he had come to realize that they were never
really interested in American ideals of "freedom" and
"democracy." They really only wanted "absolute power."
Angleton told author Joseph Trento that the reason he
had gotten the counterintelligence job in the first
place was by agreeing not to submit "sixty of Allen
Dulles' closest friends" to a polygraph test concerning
their business deals with the Nazis. In his end-of-life
despair, Angleton assumed that he would see all his
old companions again "in hell."
The transformation of James Jesus Angleton from an
enthusiastic, Ivy League cold warrior, to a bitter
old man, is an extreme example of a phenomenon I
call a "paranoid shift." I recognize the phenomenon,
because something similar happened to me.
Although I don't remember ever meeting James Jesus
Angleton, I worked at the CIA myself as a low-level
clerk as a teenager in the '60s. This was at the
same time I was beginning to question the government's
actions in Vietnam.
In fact, my personal "paranoid shift" probably began
with the disillusionment I felt when I realized that
the story of American foreign policy was, at the very
least, more complicated and darker than I had hitherto
been led to believe.
But for most of the next 30 years, even though I was
a radical, I nevertheless held faith in the basic
integrity of a system where power ultimately resided
in the people, and whereby if enough people got together
and voted, real and fundamental change could happen.
What constitutes my personal paranoid shift is that
I no longer believe this to be necessarily true.
In his book, "Rogue State: A Guide to the World's Only
Superpower," William Blum warns of how the media will
make anything that smacks of "conspiracy
theory" an immediate "object of ridicule."
This prevents the media from ever having to investigate
the many strange interconnections among the ruling
class-for example, the relationship between the boards
of directors of media giants, and the energy, banking
and defense industries. These unmentionable topics are
usually treated with what Blum calls "the media's most
effective tool-silence." But in case somebody's asking
questions, all you have to do is say, "conspiracy theory,"
and any allegation instantly becomes too frivolous to
merit serious attention.
On the other hand, since my paranoid shift, whenever
I hear the words "conspiracy theory" (which seems more
often, lately) it usually means someone is getting too
close to the truth....
Take September 11-which I identify as the date my
paranoia actually shifted, though I didn't know it
at the time.
Unless I'm paranoid, it doesn't make any sense at
all that George W. Bush, commander-in-chief, sat in
a second-grade classroom for 20 minutes after he
was informed that a second plane had hit the World
Trade Center, listening to children read a story
about a goat. Nor does it make sense that the
Number 2 man, Dick Cheney-even knowing that
"the commander" was on a mission in Florida-nevertheless
sat at his desk in the White House, watching TV,
until the Secret Service dragged him out by the
Unless I'm paranoid, it makes no sense that Defense
Secretary Donald Rumsfeld sat at his desk until
Flight 77 hit the Pentagon-well over an hour
after the military had learned about the multiple
hijacking in progress. It also makes no sense that
the brand-new chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff
sat in a Senate office for two hours while the 9/11
attacks took place, after leaving explicit instructions
that he not be disturbed-which he wasn't.
In other words, while the 9/11 attacks were occurring,
the entire top of the chain of command of the most
powerful military in the world sat at various desks,
inert. Why weren't they in the "Situation Room?"
Don't any of them ever watch "West Wing?"
In a sane world, this would be an object of major
But here on this side of the paranoid shift,
it's business as usual.
Years, even decades before 9/11, plans had been
drawn up for American forces to take control of the
oil interests of the Middle East, for various
imperialist reasons. And these plans were only
contingent upon "a catastrophic and catalyzing event,
like a new Pearl Harbor," to gain the majority
support of the American public to set the plans
into motion. When the opportunity presented itself,
the guards looked the other way... and presto,
the path to global domination was open.
Simple, as long as the media played along.
And there is voluminous evidence
that the media play along. Number one on
Project Censored's annual list of under-reported
stories in 2002 was the Project for a New American
Century PNAC, (now the infrastructure of the Bush
Regime), whose report, published in 2000,
contains the above "Pearl Harbor" quote....
"Theory?" To the contrary....
It is a well-documented, tragic and-especially