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Monday, November 23, 2009

Nation Mag Outs Secret U.S. Anti-Terror Program

The Nation magazine has an extensive article detailing a classified operation in Pakistan by Blackwater, acting expressly under U.S. authority and coordination, to fight al-Qaeda:

At a covert forward operating base run by the US Joint Special Operations Command (JSOC) in the Pakistani port city of Karachi, members of an elite division of Blackwater are at the center of a secret program in which they plan targeted assassinations of suspected Taliban and Al Qaeda operatives, "snatch and grabs" of high-value targets and other sensitive action inside and outside Pakistan, an investigation by The Nation has found. The Blackwater operatives also assist in gathering intelligence and help run a secret US military drone bombing campaign that runs parallel to the well-documented CIA predator strikes, according to a well-placed source within the US military intelligence apparatus.
Thank you for disclosing this program to make the nation less safe. The thank you comes not from me, but from the al-Qaeda operatives who will read your article and use the information to avoid capture, so they can kill Americans in Afghanistan and elsewhere.

Read the article. It is clear that the agenda is to get back at Donald Rumsfeld and other Bush administration personnel who helped organize covert efforts in Pakistan, and to play on the left-wing Blackwater Derangement Syndrome.

This is pathetic. There is no evidence in the article that anything illegal is taking place. This is nothing more or less than a deliberate attempt to harm the United States in its war against al-Qaeda.

Update: Figures, Raw Story uses The Nation article as an excuse to rehash the Seymour Hersh nonsense about Dick Cheney's "hit team." See my prior post, Sy Hersh DID Claim Cheney Ran "An Executive Assassination Ring".

Related Posts:
Executing Paralyzed Hasan "Barbaric"
KSM's Opening Statement - Priceless To Him
Who We Are As A Nation - Nov. 2009 Edition

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  1. The liberals are simply proving Dinesh D'Souza right.

    In faulting the cultural left, I am not making the absurd accusation that this group blew up the World Trade Center and the Pentagon. I am saying that the cultural left and its allies in Congress, the media, Hollywood, the nonprofit sector and the universities are the primary cause of the volcano of anger toward America that is erupting from the Islamic world. The Muslims who carried out the 9/11 attacks were the product of this visceral rage—some of it based on legitimate concerns, some of it based on wrongful prejudice—but all of it fueled and encouraged by the cultural left. Thus without the cultural left, 9/11 would not have happened.

    I'm just sayin'...

  2. Looks to me like one part recycled baloney about BW, one part exaggerations of disclosures from The Nation's source in "military intelligence," and one part payback from Wilkerson who has been dishing out payback for the past five years.

    The key line as to the central story line here -- the BW guys running drones and assassinations and what not inside Pakistan -- is this:

    "...members of an elite division of Blackwater are at the center of a secret program in which they plan targeted assassinations of suspected Taliban and Al Qaeda operatives, "snatch and grabs" of high-value targets and other sensitive action inside and outside Pakistan."

    Elsewhere in the story, we find these BW guys are experienced former special forces and intelligence personnel. As such, they HELP PLAN operations. So what's the big deal? It's commonplace for CIA, DIA, NSA and others to retain experienced people as outside contractors (arguably a bad idea but nonetheless commonplace, as policy makers have deemed it to be more cost effective than maintaining large expensive personel rolls.

    The "disclosures" about JSOC, not CIA having operational control over the drone strikes seems likely to be a touch of exaggeration or bragging by the source (who is this source, anyway? who would go to The Nation with this story? maybe someone turned away by bigger media outlets like NYT or WP because they didn;t buy it?). It's really preposterous to imagine that the CIA, Pentagon and White House under two Presidents would run widely publicized operations of this kind, zapping people with Hellfire missiles, through JSOC to sidestep Congressional oversight! The Obama White House has been bragging for 10 months to everyone who would listen (through leaks, of course) about the drone strikes, so how are they concealing anything from anyone? Besides, it's widely known that the Air Force has been apoplectic for years over CIA operation of the drones, which it asserts should be an Air Force job. It's not because it's covert. So now The Nation wants us to believe that it's SO covert that it's really a job fro a military outfit, not CIA. The whole thing is blarney.

    That's not to say that this isn't a troublesome story. Any such story stirs up political problems for the US and the Pakistani governments. And it may -- if only inadvertently or tangentially -- reveal operational secrets. Naturally, The Nation would happily disclose the US nuclear codes if it had them. A rotten bunch.

  3. Asclelpius - Dinesh D'Souza has a point but in fact with or without "input" or "inspiration" from our own well-endowed and educated cultural left (takes a lot of money to raise one of their number)remember the Middle East IS that part of the world we mistakenly thought was populated with imbicles when they took us for infidels. Like fox hunting, we sent our Crusaders on a chase against the inedible. Fresh out of barbarism, Northern Europe saw itself as superior. Like Militant Islamists - they were effective in their high level of enthusiasm for and dedication to their cause. In short - we have angered them big time twice: The Crusades and in establishing Israel. They have long memories and short fuses on their own. A few thousand were educated here but I doubt that any of their friends were among the most culrutally elite and far left - the Jewish students. They were here to observe. Jews are leaving France in droves because of anti-semitism on the part of the Islamics there. I cannot see how our cultural left could have had a substantial effect on 9/11 because of the honored presence of so many Jews among the intelligensia.

  4. I have read further the work by Dinesh D'Souza. He does get lost at times in the very good observations he makes and has difficulties doing more than stringing them together. He gets into the divide between Red and Blue America and I think this is where he often gets lost among the points and details. If his thesis is that the cultural left and its actions and views inspired the 9/11 planners, then their lifestyles of personal pleasure seeking vs "traditional values" would not have. Radical Islam is very much like the far right, conservative value US. Surely George Bush should have inspired them and he did - he inspired hate. In the end, I don't think America's enemies are assessing things here too deeply. They see what they want to see. They want to see the ugly American so they ferret out those views and actions that support their own theories. They are not into who believes what here overly deeply. The only see the final product of our foreign policy and I feel that policy is that of which the Crusaders would have approved Didn't we learn anything back then? We rode huge draft-like horses with men wearing incredibly heavy armor. We were outflanked by men riding swift, slender mounts unincumbered by heavy armor. Today, we are still using the same tactics - and the Islamic Fundamentalists know that we will - we trot out all the latest weaponry and go in there armed to the gills and backed up by big bombs. But wait - who are we up against? A few thousand men at a time with rocket launchers,road bombs and suicide belts. Could we possibly lighten up and win? Could we possibly search down in our souls for a little fervor. Oh, and can we remember why we won the Revolutionary War? We were on our own turf; the Brits would not give up the red coats and marches in formation; and we were the more pragmatic and imaginative locals who had a flexibility to wage one of the first guerilla wars. The Taliban probably studied that war for how to proceed; Viet Nam for how not to. End of lecturette.

  5. Look, I'm no fancy law professor, but could someone tell me how this story makes "the nation less safe"? It's an obscure article in a tiny US publication. Does Osama subscribe to the Nation? (If so, we may have found a way to catch him) Does it have a huge presence in Pakistan?

    Finally, let me just opine with observation and then empiricism: Pakistanis in the tribal zone are well aware Maericans are bombing them and killing their tribal leaders (as well as any innocent who happens to be visiting Grandpa's that day). This is not a new story to them, since they make no distinction between American CIA members and American mercenaries. Dead is dead. Empirically, what motivates increased US fears in the region is the destruction of innocent life, as the DOD's recent initiative to drive a wedge between "ideological" Taliban and "vengeful" Taliban points out.

    To "win" in Afghanistan/Pakistan, it would help us if we made FEWER enemies. To do that the American people need to know that anti-Muslim Christian-crusading mercenaries are gallavanting through the Pashtun zone and playing Rambo.

    So, I get it, in the Right's secret language, "makes America less safe" really means "knowledge about how our democracy is run," but could you, you know, actually have a leg to stand on when you make such an obscure claim?

  6. What crap. If the Nation knows about it, so do the Taliban. The only people for which this is a 'secret' are uninformed Americans. The story IS a huge boost to the Defeat-America-Now crowd tough. Here we have actual evidence that Evil Crusaders and baby killing CIA and Blackwater criminals are running around spoiling the new "let’s all be nice" brand of International diplomacy which is working so well (not) on the world stage.

  7. Yeah, the hordes of Conservative rightwing American suicide bombers bent on implementing biblical law are as much of a problem as Islamist Al Qaeda operatives and their copycats.

    I'm thankful that we cleared that up so we can continue the War on Conservatives and have American fight American, instead of our totalitarian enemies.

    Thank you Nation and NY Times. Fight the Power! ummmm... well, fight the power when it is not Socialist or Islamist.

    (sarc off)

  8. 2470144 said...

    What crap. If the Nation knows about it, so do the Taliban.

    Do you have ANY proof of that or is it true because it's a deeply held belief?

    Fact is, recent surveys of ex-jihadists make it clear, they do not distinguish which Americans kill their innocents and they don't follow internal US debates. They have their own internal debates and power struggles to follow.

    WE motivate them by letting trigger-happy, unaccountable mercenaries fight our wars for us.

    I know that pales in comparison to deeply held held beliefs about "libruls," but sometimes reality doesn't fit a Manichean view.