A Republican presidential contender is talking up U.S. complicity in the rise of Al Qaeda and its more radical successor ISIS, the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria.
“ISIS exists and grew stronger because of the hawks in our party who gave arms indiscriminately,” U.S. Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky (shown in a photo) alleged during an interview on MSNBC. “And most of those arms were snatched up by ISIS. These hawks also wanted to bomb [Syrian President Bashar al-Assad], which would have made ISIS's job even easier," he continued. "They created these people. ISIS is all over Libya because these same hawks in my party loved — they loved [former Secretary of State] Hillary Clinton’s war in Libya. They just wanted more of it."
Separately, a 2012 memo released by the Pentagon’s Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) suggests that the federal government at a minimum predicted that a group such as ISIS would arise in the Middle East.
Some critics go farther and argue that the memo suggests a sinister secret plan by a well-positioned authorities to create chaos in the Middle East by fostering ISIS. Why? To foster hidden foreign policy goals such as toppling Assad, hurting Iran, relieving threats to Israel, opening the way for a Qatar gas pipeline to Europe, and increasing U.S. arms sales and other military goals.
Meanwhile, former Deputy CIA Director Michael Morell said he did not know who U.S. Sen. John McCain of Arizona met in the adjoining photo, taken when McCain traveled to Syria in 2013. Morell was responding to question by the Justice Integrity Project at his news conference May 11 to promote his memoir The Great War of Our Time, which analyzes the war against Islamic militants.
McCain, now chairman of the U.S. Armed Services Committee, was seeking then and now to boost U.S. military support for those opposing Assad's government. McCain has denied that he met ISIS leaders, as alleged by critics who have published the collage at right claiming that the man circled in red would become the top ISIS leader, "Caliph" Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi.
Morell is a 33-year veteran of the CIA who retired in 2013 after serving as deputy director and twice holding the temporary post of director. He is urrently the senior intelligence analyst at CBS News among other his other pursuits. He is shown at right in our photo from the session.
The public is left clueless when someone of his credentials punts on a tough question, as he did several times in his news conference broadcast by C-SPAN.
For example, the near-certainty of informed researchers (reflected also in public opinion polls) that the Warren Commission performed a cover-up of the full facts of President Kennedy's murder illuminates the dangerous possibilities within current disputes.
Attendees are primarily those with left and academic perspectives. Yet our project's research is non-partisan and prompts at least as many invitations from conservative broadcasters and audiences as from the left because every citizen needs better tools these days to understand the confusion widely disseminated on the biggest national issues.
For such reasons, this column continues is overview of current mysteries by quoting sources from the right, left and center below.
A 2011 photo of President Obama, former President Bush and their wives symbolizes the lockstep of Washington's military-intelligence-foreign affairs establishment, despite jockeying for domestic political advantage.
On May 27, we reported here: Middle East Failures Show Disastrous, Deceptive Bipartisan Foreign Policy. The
Thus, Rand Paul positioned himself against both GOP rivals and Clinton with his comments. Similarly, Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas this week condemned Obama for not persuading congress to undertake military action against Assad in 2013 — when Cruz helped lead opposition to such intervention.
Far more murky is whether the rise of Al Qaeda (which experts spell several different ways in English) and its ally/successor ISIS arose accidentally from initial U.S. armaments in the 1980s — or by the intention of a few sinister strategists embedded into government and able to manipulate outcomes largely in secret.
The conservative transparency group Judicial Watch obtained the Defense Intelligence Agency's 2012 document as part of its litigation under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) for documents about Obama administration scandals, especially the 2012 militant murders of four U.S. diplomatic and security personnel in Benghazi.
Fox News Insider reported the discovery May 18, saying, "Another 2012 DIA memo predicts the rise of ISIS and the establishment of a caliphate 17 months before President Barack Obama called ISIS “jay-vee.”
The report by Catherine Herridge was a small part of a larger story headlined, Docs: Benghazi Planned in Advance to Coincide With 9/11 Anniversary. The story's main focus was: "Fox News has obtained documents which reveal what U.S. intelligence agencies knew about the Benghazi attack and weapons traveling from Libya to Syria back in 2012. A Defense Intelligence Agency memo from Sept. 16, 2012, concluded that the Benghazi terror attack was planned at least 10 days in advance to coincide with 9/11 and was in retaliation for a drone strike that killed an al Qaeda strategist. The memo was copied to the National Security Council, the State Department and the CIA."
The report continued, "The intention was to attack the consulate and to kill as many Americans as possible to seek revenge for the [U.S.] killing of Aboyahiye (Alaliby) in Pakistan and in memorial of the 11 September 2001 attacks on the World Trade Center buildings,” the memo said. Judicial Watch obtained the memos by suing in federal court. “The Obama administration says it was a coincidence that [the Benghazi attack] occurred on 9/11. In fact, their intelligence said it wasn’t a coincidence, and in fact, specifically the attack occurred because it was 9/11,” Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton said.
The Fox News report, supported by the adjoining graphic, continued: "A third DIA memo, dated Oct. 5, 2012, leaves no doubt that U.S. intelligence agencies knew that weapons were moving from Libya to Syria before the attack that killed four Americans. Former CIA Director Mike Morell recently dodged questions about these weapons in an interview with Bret Baier."
Baier asked him: Were CIA officers tracking the movement of weapons from Libya to Syria?
“Can’t talk about it,” Morell said.
Our Presidential Puppetry: Obama, Romney and Their Masters described upon publication in late 2013 how the Obama administration had hidden from the public the secret program in Libya involving the CIA and State Department to facilitate arms smuggling by militants through Benghazi. The purpose was to help rebels in Syria in an operation that resulted in the deaths of U.S. Ambassador Christopher Stevens and three others. The Fox News report further confirmed the book segment and the continuing obfuscation of a major news story.
Even more scandals are apparent. Let's look at the DIA prediction regarding ISIS.
Summarized below are commentaries from author and former Navy intelligence officer Wayne Madsen, Zero Hedge commentator Tyler Durden, and former State Department Foreign Service Officer Michael Springmann, who is now an author and attorney.
Each has written for years that Al Qaeda was not simply an accidental outgrowth of careless and wrong-headed American foreign policy but instead a tool of ruthless and cynical leaders controlling key government officials in the dominant parties here and with allied governments.
We start with the Wayne Madsen Report (WMR) May 26 column, DIA message confirms ISIL is a Western construct. This subscription site article is excerpted here by permission of its author, a Navy officer for 14 years, including service in Navy intelligence and a year's detail to the National Security Agency (NSA):
A formerly SECRET NOFORN (No Foreign Dissemination) message, dated August 5, 2012, to the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) from a redacted U.S. government agency, provides more evidence that the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), otherwise known as the Islamic State or "Da'ish," was a construct of U.S. intelligence. As WMR reported in the past, ISIL was also incubated and sustained by the Saudi, Qatari, Turkish, and Israeli intelligence services.
The message, declassified as the result of a Freedom of Information Act request submitted by Judicial Watch, a conservative organization, indicates that the intelligence on ISIL was "not finally evaluated," which means it was not sanitized and editorialized by the political operatives within the U.S. intelligence community.
The message leads off with the following: "The Salafist, the Muslim Brotherhood, and AQI [Al Qaeda in Iraq] are the major forces driving the insurgency in Iraq." The message goes on to state: "The West, Gulf countries, and Turkey support the [Syrian] opposition; while Russia, China, and Iran support the regime." The "regime" is the government of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.
The operative paragraph states that the "supporting powers to the opposition" want to establish "declared or undeclared Salafist principality in eastern Syria."
Madsen, shown in a file photo, wrote much more about the memo, following up his reports last year that the United States and its allies have been hidden supporters of ISIS for strategic reasons. For now, however, we cite others for additional comment.
Durden of Zero Hedge published a hard-hitting blog May 24, Secret Pentagon Report Reveals US "Created" ISIS As A "Tool" To Overthrow Syria's President Assad.
"From the first sudden, and quite dramatic, appearance of the fanatical Islamic group known as ISIS," he wrote, "we suggested that the 'straight to beheading YouTube clip' purpose behind the Saudi Arabia-funded Islamic State was a simple one: use the Jihadists as the vehicle of choice to achieve a political goal: depose of Syria's president Assad, who for years has stood in the way of a critical Qatari natural gas pipeline, one which could dethrone Russia as Europe's dominant — and belligerent — source of energy."
But it's one thing to speculate; it's something entirely different to have hard proof. And while speculation was rife that just like the CIA-funded al Qaeda had been used as a facade by the US to achieve its own geopolitical and national interests over the past two decades, so ISIS was nothing more than al Qaeda 2.0, there was no actual evidence of just this.
That may all have changed now when a declassified secret US government document obtained by the public interest law firm Judicial Watch shows that Western governments deliberately allied with al-Qaeda and other Islamist extremist groups to topple Syrian dictator Bashir al-Assad.
What wasn't clear is just how the US predetermined the current course of events in the middle east.
Now, thanks to the following declassified report, we have a far better understanding of not only how current events in the Middle East came to be, but what was America's puppetmaster role leading up to it all.
Here at the Justice Integrity Project, we reported in early March that Springmann's new book provides a shocking, timely, and credible circumstantial case that ties the U.S. training of Islamic radicals to our nation’s major foreign policy disasters in the Mideast during the past quarter century.
The book is Visas for Al Qaeda: CIA Handouts That Rocked the World — An Insider's View. Springmann (shown at right) is the former chief of the visa section at the U.S. consulate in Jeddah in Saudi Arabia.
“It’s past time to expose murder, war crimes and human rights violations by the United States of American and its ‘intelligence’ services,” Springmann says. He continues:
Using the dubious claim of "national security," the United States, though the Central Intelligence Agency and the National Security Agency (NSA), has engaged in and/or organized coups and destabilization efforts around the world, most notably in the Middle East.
From Libya to Iran, governments have been overthrown, politicians assassinated, and everyday citizens murdered — all with the knowledge of not only the president of the United States and the executive branch but with the legislative and judicial ones, as well.
The essence of his first-hand experience is that he was required as chief visa officer in Saudi Arabia to issue what he regarded as illegal visas to large numbers of U.S.-backed Islamic fundamentalists transiting through Jeddah from multiple Islamic nations so they could visit the United States for secret purposes.
Those purposes, Springmann later concluded, involved covert training at such locales as "The Farm," a CIA training facility in Williamsburg, Virginia. The trainees, he alleges, were vagabond Islamic mercenaries, revolutionists and jihadists — an "Arab-Afghan Legion" — who could be unleashed on America’s enemies. All of this, he argues in Visas for Al Qaeda, was without adequate consideration of the “blowback” to the United States from uncontrollable jihadists sometimes recruited from prisons and with the help of ultra-radical clerics.
Official statements are quite different, of course.
One comprehensive view from President Obama was his 13-minute address last September on the threat of ISIS/ISIL/Islamic State: President Obama: “We Will Degrade and Ultimately Destroy ISIL."
McCain, the Senate Armed Services Committee chairman, has campaigned relentlessly for years to advocate more wars and arms deals to solve global problems. At the same time, he is lionized by the media, as underscored by his track record as by far the current leader in terms of invitations to speak on the influential Sunday network news talk shows.
The close ties between the important politicians and the media are illustrated by the White House photo at right taken on Feb. 18, 2015. It portrays the president working with Ben Rhodes, the deputy national security advisor for strategic communications (shown at far left), and Terry Szuplat, senior director for speech writing, on remarks prior to the White House Summit on Countering Violent Extremism.
Rhodes has been a key strategist and speechwriter for the president on national security. His brother, David Rhodes, is the president of CBS News.
Yet, as we reported earlier this year, no one apparently has grilled McCain in-depth to determine the facts behind some of his initiatives, such as his meeting in May 2013 with Islamists who allegedly morphed into Al-Qaeda and ISIS/ISIL leaders in Syria.
McCain slipped across the Turkish-Syria border to meet with opponents of Syrian President Bashar Assad.
The trip was arranged by Elizabeth O'Bagy, who accompanied him while working for the U.S. Institute for the Study of War, a hawkish NGO led by Kimberly Kagan. The latter is part of the neo-con/neo-lib pundit/scholar family that includes her husband, Frederick Kagan, his brother Robert Kagan, and the latter's wife, U.S. Ambassador to the European Union Victoria Nuland.
Like McCain, the photogenic, Georgetown-educated "Dr." O'Bagy, 26, shown at left in a screen shot from Fox News, advocated the vital importance for U.S. taxpayers in ramping up American funding for the so-called Syrian "moderates" against the Assad government. She made the case, among other places, in a Wall Street Journal op-ed that identified her as a Ph.D. expert. McCain, Secretary of State John Kerry, the Wall Street Journal, and many others were eager to advance her career and messaging.
Using one such platform, she described McCain as so eager to know his moderate friends that he undertook a "sleepover" with them.
But she was exposed as falsely claiming doctorate status and as being a paid operative of the Free Syrian Army. She seemed, in other words, to be a phony and a propagandist although might be described more charitably as yet-another career-minded opportunist in a capital filled with them.
Whatever the case, McCain promptly hired her as staff after the Institute for the Study of War fired her for the false claim of doctorate status.
The situation got even more messy in 2014 when Rand Paul relied on a McCain claim that he had met "with ISIS" to denounce McCain's continuing advocacy for war spending against Syria.
Washington Post columnist and fact-checker Glenn Kessler promptly published an all-out defense of McCain and attack on Paul, Four Pinocchios for Rand Paul’s claim that McCain met with the Islamic State. Kessler relied heavily on McCain's invective against Paul, previously reported in McCain's friendly home-state newspaper, the Arizona Republic in McCain rips claim he posed for photo with ISIS fighters.
As reader comments to both newspapers pointed out, the newspapers' defense of McCain failed to resolve the factual questions.
The most basic omission was the newspaper's failure to identify all the individuals in the photos with their affiliations. Critics of McCain allege current ISIS Caliphate leader Abu-Bakr Al Bagdadi (a pseudonym), for example, was in the 2013 photos.
Michael Morell's response to my question at the Press Club, that he did not know the identity of McCain's meeting companions, suggests either secrecy or lack of curiosity.
After the cameras went off, I mentioned to him that my questions stemmed from the commonplace Washington observation that in an agency "the number two guy runs everything."
"I did run everything," he quipped, "but that doesn't mean I know everything."
A Tale of Two Intelligence Careers
Morell and Madsen have pursued different paths following their work in government intelligence.
Madsen became a vice president at a defense contracting company, Computer Sciences Corp., following his Navy service. Then he became a public interest research fellow and commentator who has been increasingly critical of the defense-intelligence complex in recent years. As one step, he helped organize his Northern Virginia community in support of the unsuccessful John McCain for President campaign in 2000, for which he contributed $500.
Madsen has a different take now, as reflected in his latest column, excerpted at length with his permission:
The Western powers — the United States, Britain, France, and, more importantly, Israel — working in concert with the Gulf countries [Saudi Arabia, Qatar, United Arab Emirates, Kuwait, and Bahrain], as well as Turkey, according to U.S. intelligence, created ISIL to destroy the Shia-dominated nations of Syria and Iraq. The fall of Palmyra in Syria and Ramadi in Iraq are a result of this conspiracy of "supporting powers." The civil war in Yemen that has seen the very same "supporting powers," including Egypt, providing military forces to fight the Shi'a-aligned Houthi rebels is, like the civil wars in Syria and Iraq, of U.S. Saudi, Israeli, and Turkish design. Ultimately, Iran is the target for the "supporting powers" of ISIL and its allies.
WMR has been reporting on the NATO and Gulf Arab support for ISIL since the group first raised its black and white caliphate flag in Syria. Syrian rebels, who later formed the core of ISIL, were photographed with Senator John McCain during a covert foray by his and his assistant, Elizabeth O'Bagy [also shown in the photo at right], into a rebel-held "safe haven" in Syria. Among those photographed with McCain was the future Islamic State caliph, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi.
In a three-part series in September 2014, WMR reported the following: "The deeper one digs into the operations surrounding the 'Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant' (ISIL), or, as it is variably called, 'Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham' (ISIS), 'Al Dawlah' (the State), or 'Da'ish' (a concatenation of 'al-Dawla al-Islamiya fi Iraq wa al-Sham,' the more the Islamist insurgent group's links to Western and Israeli intelligence are revealed . . . There is every indication that ISIL has significant links to Israel.
Although there are claims to the contrary, ISIL absorbed most of the ranks of the Al Qaeda-affiliated Jabhat al-Nusra (Al Nusra Front) Islamist insurgent group in Syria. Al Nusra Front has coordinated its seizure of Syrian army positions along the Golan Heights border with the Israeli Defense Force (IDF). Rather than hit back at Al Nusra positions on the Syrian side of the Golan frontier, the Israelis attacked Syrian army positions, giving a boost to the Syrian campaigns of Al Nusra in particular and ISIL in general. There are reports that the Israeli military has been given the coordinates of Syrian army and Hezbollah forces, as well as 'Committees for the Defense of the Homeland' militia forces of Alawites, Shi'as, Christians, and Druze, by Al-Nusra/ISIL to launch missile and drone attacks from the Israeli side of the border . . . The grand master of Israel's Zionist policies, former U.S. Secretary of State Henry Kissinger, recently stated that Iran was a bigger threat than ISIL. Prospective Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton recently lavishly praised Kissinger in a review of his new book, 'World Order.'"
Our September 2014 report continued: "ISIL/Al Nusra is enriching itself from ransom payments for hostages being received mostly from Qatar, a member of Obama's newly-formed 'coalition' to fight ISIL. The most recent ransom paid by Qatar to ISIL was for 45 Fijian peacekeepers captured by ISIL's Al Nusra allies in the Golan region of Syria bordering Israel. Qatar also paid ransom payments to Al Nusra-ISIL units for some Syrian nuns and captured Lebanese Army soldiers.
Meanwhile, Saudi Arabia is, under Obama's 'coalition,' training so-called Free Syrian Army 'moderates' to fight ISIL/Al Nusra and the Assad government. In the past, the Saudis have conducted such training to radicalize Sunni Muslim volunteers for the Syrian civil war and funnel them to ISIL units in Syria and Iraq."
Madsen currently lives in modest circumstances in a trailer and last month published his tenth book, The Christian Mafia: The Rise of the Dominionist Movement and How It Threatens America?s Democracy.
His previous book, The Star and the Sword, was published last summer and was just as controversial. It alleges a secret alliance between Saudi Arabia and Israel facilitated by the United States. Because of such writing Madsen, once a frequent guest on U.S. network and cable news shows, is no longer invited.
Morell, by contrast, is not simply a commentator on CBS News but on many shows because of his book.
The conservative advocacy group Accuracy in Media put a harsh postscript on his career in a column, Mike Morell Attempts to Repair His Damaged Credibility. Co-authors Roger Aronoff and Bethany Stotts wrote,
After leaving the CIA in 2013, Morell joined Beacon Global Strategies, started by Hillary Clinton’s “principal gatekeeper” — as described by the New York Times — Philippe Reines. The company serves as a sort of Clinton government-in-waiting. Thus, Morell’s statements become even that much more suspect due to a conflict of interest, while trying to protect Hillary Clinton’s bid for the White House.
In other words, the future looks bright — unless you are not bothering to try to understand the news. From here, we cannot say we always understand complex foreign intrigues, especially in a timely way. But we do know enough to appreciate those who are at least asking questions and on occasion suggesting answers, especially on important topics.
28pages.org, Rand Paul, Ron Wyden to Introduce 28 Pages Resolution in Senate, Brian McGlinchey, May 28, 2015. The growing, nonpartisan drive to declassify a 28-page finding on foreign government support of the 9/11 hijackers is about to take an enormous step forward with the introduction of a Senate resolution urging the president to release the material to the public. Dramatically compounding the issue’s visibility, the resolution is being introduced by high-profile Republican presidential hopeful Rand Paul of Kentucky. A spokesperson for Senator Paul told 28Pages.org that Oregon Democrat Ron Wyden will cosponsor the resolution, which will serve as the upper chamber’s companion to House Resolution 14. Paul will unveil the Transparency for the Families of 9/11 Victims Act at an outdoor Capitol Hill press conference on Tuesday, June 2 at 10 am, joined by Representatives Walter Jones (R,NC), Stephen Lynch (D, MA), Thomas Massie (R, KY) and former Democratic Senator Bob Graham.
Insurge Intelligence via OpEdNews, The bin Laden death mythology, Nafeez Ahmed, July 3, 2015. The White House's story of how U.S. special forces hunted down and assassinated arch terrorist Osama bin Laden in his secret lair in Pakistan is unraveling. The official narrative of the bin Laden raid is that for over a decade, U.S. intelligence hunted for the terror chief until a surveillance/torture-enabled breakthrough tracked him to a secret compound in Abbottabad, Pakistan on May 1, 2011. The role of a former ISI officer in blowing the whistle on the ISI's protection of bin Laden in August 2010 brought his concealment out into the open and triggered high-level White House discussions on how to resolve the situation: to kill or not to kill? Declassified documents, official government reports and intelligence officials confirm that since before 9/11, and continuing for the decade after, the US intelligence community was systematically stymied from apprehending Osama bin Laden due to longstanding relationships with Saudi and Pakistani military intelligence. Despite specific intelligence available to elements of the US intelligence community on bin Laden's location in Pakistan, under the protection of US allies, no action was taken to apprehend bin Laden for years. That failure to act coincided with the launch of an anti-Iran US covert operations programme around 2005, pursued in partnership with Saudi Arabia, to finance Islamist Sunni militants including al-Qaeda affiliated groups.
Washington Post, Secret CIA effort in Syria faces large funding cut, Greg Miller and Karen DeYoung June 12, 2015. Key lawmakers have moved to slash funding of a secret CIA operation to train and arm rebels in Syria, a move that U.S. officials said reflects rising skepticism of the effectiveness of the agency program and the Obama administration’s strategy in the Middle East. The House Intelligence Committee recently voted unanimously to cut as much as 20 percent of the classified funds flowing into a CIA program that U.S. officials said has become one the agency’s largest covert operations, with a budget approaching $1 billion a year. “There is a great deal of concern on a very bipartisan basis with our strategy in Syria,” said Rep. Adam B. Schiff (Calif.), the ranking Democrat on the intelligence panel. He declined to comment on specific provisions of the committee’s bill but cited growing pessimism that the United States will be in a position “to help shape the aftermath” of Syria’s civil war.
Related News Coverage
Huffington Post, Rand Paul: ISIS 'Exists And Grows Stronger' Because Of GOP Hawks, Sam Levine, May 27, 2015. Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) (shown in file photo) on Wednesday blamed the rise of ISIS on hawkish members of the GOP who he said were too eager to intervene abroad. Paul, who is running for president, has worked to push back against the characterization that he is an isolationist and weak on foreign policy. On Wednesday, Paul said that those who said his kind of foreign policy was responsible for the rise of ISIS were wrong.
Fox News Insider, Docs: Benghazi Planned in Advance to Coincide With 9/11 Anniversary, Catherine Herridge, May 18, 2015. Fox News has obtained documents which reveal what U.S. intelligence agencies knew about the Benghazi attack and weapons traveling from Libya to Syria back in 2012. A Defense Intelligence Agency memo from Sept. 16, 2012, concluded that the Benghazi terror attack was planned at least 10 days in advance to coincide with 9/11 and was in retaliation for a drone strike that killed an al Qaeda strategist. The memo was copied to the National Security Council, the State Department and the CIA. “The intention was to attack the consulate and to kill as many Americans as possible to seek revenge for the [U.S.] killing of Aboyahiye (Alaliby) in Pakistan and in memorial of the 11 September 2001 attacks on the World Trade Center buildings,” the memo said. Judicial Watch obtained the memos by suing in federal court. “The Obama administration says it was a coincidence that [the Benghazi attack] occurred on 9/11. In fact, their intelligence said it wasn’t a coincidence, and in fact, specifically the attack occurred because it was 9/11,” Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton said. Another 2012 DIA memo predicts the rise of ISIS and the establishment of a caliphate 17 months before President Barack Obama called ISIS “jay-vee.” A third DIA memo, dated Oct. 5, 2012, leaves no doubt that U.S. intelligence agencies knew that weapons were moving from Libya to Syria before the attack that killed four Americans. Former CIA Director Mike Morell recently dodged questions about these weapons in an interview with Bret Baier. Baier asked him: Were CIA officers tracking the movement of weapons from Libya to Syria? “Can’t talk about it,” Morell said.
Wayne Madsen Report (WMR), DIA message confirms ISIL is a Western construct, Wayne Madsen, May 26, 2015 (Subscription required but quoted here with permission). A formerly SECRET NOFORN (No Foreign Dissemination) message, dated August 5, 2012, to the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) from a redacted U.S. government agency, provides more evidence that the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), otherwise known as the Islamic State or "Da'ish," was a construct of U.S. intelligence. As WMR reported in the past, ISIL was also incubated and sustained by the Saudi, Qatari, Turkish, and Israeli intelligence services.
Justice Integrity Project, Shocking New Book Links Illicit U.S. Visas To Terrorists, Current Wars, Andrew Kreig, March 2, 2015. A former State Department foreign service officer’s new book provides a shocking, timely, and credible circumstantial case that ties the U.S. training of Islamic radicals to our nation’s major foreign policy disasters in the Mideast during the past quarter century. The book is Visas for Al Qaeda: CIA Handouts That Rocked the World — An Insider's View. Author J. Michael Springmann (shown in a photo) is the former chief of the visa section at the U.S. consulate in Jeddah in Saudi Arabia.
Consortium News, Obama's Strategic Shift, Robert Parry, May 21, 2015. It's finally dawning on President Barack Obama the grave dangers that have been created for the American Republic by decades of neoconservative dominance of U.S. foreign policy, but his moves in response to this dire threat remain hesitant and indecisive. The only game-saving play open to Obama now -- in response to recent Saudi-backed escalation of Sunni extremism in Syria and Iraq as well the new right-wing racist government in Israel -- may be to forge an alliance with Iran and Russia as a counterforce in the Middle East that could save Syria's relatively secular regime and reverse gains by the Islamic State inside Iraq.That, however, would require Obama finally taking control of his foreign policy and throwing out or at least sidelining many of the neocons and "liberal interventionists" whom he has tolerated and promoted. It's difficult to see how the likes of Assistant Secretary of State for European Affairs Victoria Nuland and Ambassador to the United Nations Samantha Power would fall in line behind the necessary moves to build such a pragmatic alliance.
Insurge Intelligence Medium, Secret Pentagon report reveals West saw ISIS as strategic asset Anti-ISIS coalition knowingly sponsored violent extremists to ‘isolate’ Assad, rollback ‘Shia expansion,' Nafeez Ahmed, May 2015.
Accuracy in Media, Mike Morell Attempts to Repair His Damaged Credibility, Roger Aronoff and Bethany Stotts, May 19, 2015. Mike Morell, the former Deputy CIA Director and Acting CIA Director, is out with a new book, and has been making the rounds on virtually every TV network. This is supposed to be his time to set the record straight, but he has apparently decided not to do that. Instead, his truthful revelations are mixed in with obvious falsehoods, so it becomes difficult to distinguish one from the other. “One of the most striking aspects of Morell’s chapters on Benghazi is his dogged insistence that the attacks were simply the result of a mob spinning out of control,” writes Steven Hayes for The Weekly Standard. “But Morell maintains that the attacks were not planned and claims, repeatedly and bizarrely, that the attackers did not necessarily want to harm Americans.” After leaving the CIA in 2013, Morell joined Beacon Global Strategies, started by Hillary Clinton’s “principal gatekeeper” — as described by The New York Times — Philippe Reines. The company serves as a sort of Clinton government-in-waiting. Thus, Morell’s statements become even that much more suspect due to a conflict of interest, while trying to protect Hillary Clinton’s bid for the White House.
Justice Integrity Project, Middle East Failures Illustrate Disastrous, Deceptive Bipartisan Foreign Policy, Andrew Kreig, May 27 2015. The U.S. foreign policy advocated by leaders of both major parties is experiencing serious setbacks in multiple nations, especially in the Middle East and Central Asia. Recent military losses in Iraq, Afghanistan and Yemen exemplify a joint Obama/Bush foreign policy disaster with no easy solutions.
Catching Our Attention on other Justice, Media & Integrity Issues
Courthouse News Service, CIA Search for JFK Records Mostly Sufficient, William Dotinga, June 8, 2015. A federal judge denied most of an attorney's bid for CIA records on the assassinations of John and Robert Kennedy, finding the agency had searched diligently enough to satisfy the law. Anthony Bothwell -- representing himself -- sued the CIA in November 2013 for denying his records request under the Freedom of Information Act relating to five people who he claims may have been involved in the Kennedy assassinations in 1963 and 1968. His initial FOIA request sought all records related to three people allegedly connected to JFK's assassination: Johnny Roselli, Jean Souetre and David Morales. As to RFK's assassination, Bothwell sought records Thane Eugene Cesar and Enrique Hernandez. The CIA denied Bothwell's request as to the JFK connections, saying that if any documents existed they would be exempt from release as "intelligence sources and methods information." For the two individuals allegedly connected to the Bobby Kennedy assassination, the agency said those records were "operational files" also exempted under FOIA.
National Press Club, State Department official commends Club for freedom of the press advocacy, Ken Dalecki, May 19, 2015. The State Department's assistant secretary for public affairs commended the Press Club and President John Hughes for making press freedom a major theme this year and outlined steps the State Department is taking to protect journalists in increasingly hostile environments at a meeting of American Legion Post 20 on May 18. Douglas Frantz, a Pulitzer Prize-winning investigative reporter and editor before entering government service, said press freedom is an issue that is "professional and personal for me," after having covered conflicts from the first Gulf war to the fighting in Afghanistan. He said that for the first time journalists are being targeted rather than being killed or injured as collateral damage. Frantz said local and freelance reporters are especially vulnerable because they lack support from major news organization. He said the State Department will expand a program that has trained some 350 journalists before they entered hostile environments. The department is also working on a protocol under which foreign journalists would receive the same level of assistance from U.S. embassies that American journalists receive. Frantz said the procedures will be modeled on services offered by the U.S. embassy in Israel. He said that 90 percent of crimes against foreign journalists are never prosecuted, an issue that he said U.S. ambassadors soon will be required to raise during meetings with host country officials. Frantz conceded that press freedom is not the top priority in dealing with countries such as Iran, Egypt, Turkey and Russia, but that it continues to be an issue raised by Secretary of State John Kerry. He said human rights will be a major issue in any normalization of relations with Cuba. The assistant secretary said Russia poses a special threat due to what he called the "weaponization of propaganda," particularly lies aimed at large Russian-speaking populations in the Baltic states. He said the U.S., Germany and Great Britain are developing a cloud-based bank of popular Western programs translated into Russian for use by unbiased broadcasters on their stations. Frantz said Russian speakers would then stay tuned for fact-based news programs rather than the biased reporting on Russian stations airing popular programming.