Top Scoops

Book Reviews | Gordon Campbell | Scoop News | Wellington Scoop | Community Scoop | Search

 

Howard's End: Show Us The Evidence!

From having no intelligence information whatsoever of terrorist plans to attack targets in the U.S. the West has now moved, in just four days, to being so absolutely certain of the perpetrators than it forms a posse alongside Sheriff George Bush to take the world towards war. Maree Howard writes.

To name just a few of today's war activities - a state of emergency has been declared in the U.S., 30,000 military reservists have been called up, coalitions are being formed to allegedly strike Afghanistan from Turkey, Saudi Arabia and from islands in the Indian Ocean, U.S. missile cruisers are moving from their home ports in Japan and British war ships are now passing through the Suez Canal into the Indian Ocean.

No intelligence information fore-warning of the attacks? Hold on a minute!

German police confirmed Friday that an Iranian man phoned U.S. police from his deportation cell to warn of the planned attack on the World Trade Centre.

The lower Saxony Justice Ministry confirmed the story that the man made the calls but said he was not believed.

Justice Ministry spokesman, Frank Woesthoff, said the man phoned America several times but he refused to give further details.

However, Woesthoff did say that the U.S. Secret Service had not told the Justice Ministry about the calls it received from Langenhagen prison until after Tuesday's attacks.

The Hanover daily newspaper Neue Presse reported that the "29-year-old was dismissed as mentally unstable when he gave the warning of a terrorist attack to occur this week."

Was this man treated as just another nutter making a hoax call? If so, then it has parallels to the U.S. intelligence failures surrounding Pearl Harbour which I wrote about last week.

It is totally pointless having human intelligence, the man in the trench coat as Helen Clark now says, if it is not listened to and acted upon. Those failures contributed to both the First and Second World Wars.

The U.S. is in dire need of intelligence information with offers of help to track down those responsible coming from around the world.

But that creates its own Catch-22 situation because other nations will seek to shape the war response against terrorism to suit their own ends.

Nations like Russia, India, China and Israel can provide significant intelligence and foreign language skills and they have an enormous wealth of knowledge in dealing with dissidents, militant groups and counter-intelligence methodology.

But that comes with a price. By pin-pointing groups like Palestinians or Chechens, nations such as Israel or Russia can manipulate the war response in order to combat their own enemies.

Israel radio, for example, has reported Ariel Sharon in his conversations with Colin Powell, comparing Yasser Arafat to Osama bin Laden.

Suddenly, the whole world started beating the drums against Osama bin Laden, Arabs and Afghanistan.

I ask the simple question. If we are to go to war show me the solid evidence you have which supports that course of action?

Not speculation, not allegations, not whimsy - I want solid evidence. Then, and only then, will I support you.

We've had a number of "Arabs" studying to be pilots in Florida and Germany. Isn't that what globalisation is all about?

But no, immediately they are named as suspects and the Arab world is condemned by angry people, even in New Zealand, attacking one race.

Can we now understand how the Jews felt in Germany from 1933 onwards. God help the Chinese students studying in New Zealand if the Chinese government does something while their students are studying here.

The behaviour of some New Zealanders is a disgrace.

A young girl of Muslim descent - she's been here since she was four months old - phoned talkback radio on Saturday night and alleged that she was so disturbed by what a relieving teacher said about Arabs in class that she picked up her books and walked out.

It's about time that the Education Ministry followed Australia and issued new directions and circulars about racism to all teachers.

Some global politicians, like Tony Blair, are even starting a manipulative fear campaign. Blair says we must now beware of "loose nukes."

I'm now expecting politicians like Tony Blair to come out and say "Of Course we can fix the world but you'll have to lose some of your freedoms for us to do it."

Power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely.

Let's face it, the world hasn't been a stable place for many years. Bombings, atrocities and mayhem have been the order of the day. Some have been committed by nation state against nation state while others have been internal.

Throughout the last 40 years of upheaval the UN has been pretty well useless.

But now, the American people are being warned by their President to expect a long drawn-out war.

I don't blame Western people at grass-roots level because their reaction to last Tuesday's atrocities on American soil is normal for a people who have tolerated global human rights abuses over a long period of time so they can wear a cheap pair of running shoes or drive cheap cars, using cheap petrol.

Consequently, through "irrational exuberance" the world's financial systems are in a state of collapse with billions of dollars being pumped into global economies by central banks.

That's not new, of course, it's been going on for at about 12 months with Scoop stories telling people about the perilous state of the global economy as far back as last October.

Traditionally, share markets go into "crash mode" in September and October anyway without tragedies like the World Trade Centre and Pentagon terrorist attacks.

It might be prudent to buy-in a few more stocks of the imported foods like tea, coffee, sugar and flour - and keep your petrol tank full. And don't forget toilet paper and sanitary products. All this is common sense anyway in the event of a natural disaster.

Over the last few years people in the West have continued on their merry way spending and borrowing like there's no tomorrow.

How were they to know. When U.S. mainstream media have programmes called "The World in a Minute" is it any wonder that people are not properly informed about global financial and geo-political issues?

In fact, the Internet news services have been the fastest with the most in depth stories during most of this crisis and its aftermath. And people across the world are talking to each other via email. I suggest they're not convinced by mainstream media and the politicians.

Clearly, people the world over see the attack on the United States as a tragedy. But some foreign governments will look to turn it into an opportunity to solve many of their own problems and promote their own ideology. And that's the trap.

Couple the U.S. tragedy and war potential with the way the Aussies are now feeling about New Zealand because of the Air NZ fiasco and our tourism and export economy is looking none to bright. Even so, a lot of expat Kiwi's will now be looking towards home.


ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Top Scoops Headlines

 

Reese Erlich: Foreign Correspondent: Trump Plays Both Sides Against The Middle

Is he a hawk? Is he a peacenik? The President keeps us guessing . By Reese Erlich President Donald Trump has convinced Republican isolationists and hawks that he supports their views. That’s a neat trick, since the two groups hold opposing positions. ... More>>

Binoy Kampmark: Waiting For The Old Bailey: Julian Assange And Britain’s Judicial Establishment

On September 7, Julian Assange will be facing another round of gruelling extradition proceedings, in the Old Bailey, part of a process that has become a form of gradual state-sanctioned torture. The US Department of Justice hungers for their man. The More>>



Gordon Campbell: On The Sorry Plight Of The International Education Sector

Tourism and international education have been two of the sectors hardest hit by the pandemic. They’re both key export industries. Yet the government response to them has been strikingly different. There has been nothing beyond a few words of ministerial condolence and a $51.6 million package (details below) to get the sector through the pandemic...
More>>

Binoy Kampmark: Google’s Open Letter: Fighting Australia’s News Media Bargaining Code

Tech giants tend to cast thin veils over threats regarding government regulations. They are also particularly concerned by those more public spirited ones, the sort supposedly made for the broader interest. Google has given us an example of this ... More>>


Gordon Campbell: On Trump’s Current Chances Of Re-Election

By now it seems clear that National have no fresh ideas to offer for how New Zealand could avoid the Covid-19 economic crisis. As in the past, National has set an arbitrary 30% ratio of government debt to GDP that it aims to achieve “in a decade or so,” ... More>>

The Conversation: Rogue Poll Or Not, All The Signs Point To A Tectonic Shift In New Zealand Politics

Richard Shaw AAP(various)/NZ Greens (CC-BY-SA)/The Conversation Strong team. More jobs. Better economy. So say the National Party’s campaign hoardings. Only thing is, last Sunday’s Newshub-Reid Research poll – which had support for the Labour ... More>>

The Coronavirus Republic: Three Million Infections And Rising

The United States is famed for doing things, not to scale, but off it. Size is the be-all and end-all, and the coronavirus is now doing its bit to assure that the country remains unrivalled in the charts of infection . In time, other unfortunates may well ... More>>

Binoy Kampmark: Altars Of Hypocrisy: George Floyd, Protest And Black Face

Be wary what you protest about. The modern moral constabulary are out, and they are assisted by their Silicon Valley friends in the Social Media club. Should you dare take a stand on anything, especially in a dramatic way, you will be found out ... More>>