Seventeen local health workers have been fired in Abbottabad for their part in a CIA scheme to try to confirm the presence of Osama bin Laden in the northern Pakistani town. The low-ranking health department employees were punished for helping Dr Shakil Afridi, who was assigned by the CIA to set up a fake vaccination scheme in Abbottabad, ahead of the 3 May US military operation that found and killed the al-Qaida leader there.
One reason Endless War is endless is because the US is so adept at creating and strengthening the Enemies who then need to be dispatched (and that’s independent of how American actions are the principal cause of the anti-US animosity which ensures the War continues). Orwell famously highlighted the propaganda that “we’ve always been at war with Eastasia,” but does the US ever have any enemies that it did not at some point in the recent past fund, arm and/or cooperate with extensively?
Al-Qaeda’s number two Atiyah abd al-Rahman has been killed in Pakistan, the United States said, claiming another “tremendous” blow to the group following the death of Osama bin Laden. News of Rahman’s demise comes as the US gears up to mark the 10th anniversary of Al-Qaeda’s most spectacular attack, on September 11, 2001 on landmarks […]
The establishment media just keep getting worse. They’re further and further from good, tough investigative journalism, and more prone to be pawns in complicated games that affect the public interest in untold ways. A significant recent example is The New Yorker’s vaunted August 8 exclusive on the vanquishing of Osama bin Laden.
The record since 9/11 shows that’s exactly what’s happening. The war on terror has totally depleted the US treasury – to the point that the White House and Congress are now immersed in a titanic battle over a $4 trillion debt ceiling. What is never mentioned is that these trillions of dollars were ruthlessly subtracted from the wellbeing of average Americans – smashing the carefully constructed myth of the American dream. So what’s the endgame for these trillions of dollars? The US corporate media simply refuses to cover what is one of the most important stories of the early 21st century.
The CIA organised a fake vaccination programme in the town where it believed Osama bin Laden was hiding in an elaborate attempt to obtain DNA from the fugitive al-Qaida leader’s family, a Guardian investigation has found. As part of extensive preparations for the raid that killed Bin Laden in May, CIA agents recruited a senior Pakistani doctor to organise the vaccine drive in Abbottabad, even starting the “project” in a poorer part of town to make it look more authentic, according to Pakistani and US officials and local residents. The doctor, Shakil Afridi, has since been arrested by the Inter-Services Intelligence agency (ISI) for co-operating with American intelligence agents.
Nobody seems to have noticed, but in the nearly two and a half years of the Obama administration at least three commonplace phrases of the George W. Bush era have slipped into oblivion: “regime change,” “shock and awe,” and “imperial presidency.” The war in Libya should remind us of just how appropriate they remain.
In the seven weeks since the killing of Osama bin Laden, pundits and experts of many stripes have concluded that his death represents a marker of genuine significance in the story of America’s encounter with terrorism. Peter Bergen, a bin Laden expert, wrote “Killing bin Laden is the end of the war on terror. We can just sort of announce that right now.” Yet you wouldn’t know it in Washington where, if anything, the Obama administration and Congress have interpreted the killing of al-Qaeda’s leader as a virtual license to double down on every “front” in the war on terror.
The Mumbai terror attacks that killed 166 people and brought India and Pakistan to the brink of war were scripted by ISI officers and approved before execution by al-Qaida commanders, according to a book just written by slain Pakistani journalist Syed Saleem Shahzad. The 40-year-old reporter in his book titled “Inside Al Qaeda and the Taleban – beyond bin Laden and 9/11” describes the Mumbai plan as one pushed through by Ilyas Kashmiri, a key al-Qaida ally with wide links with the Pakistan defense establishment. Shahzad, who was an authority on terrorism in Afghanistan and the neighbourhood, says in the book that the plan was authored by Inter-Services Intelligence officers and executed by Lashkar-e-Taiba.
During his 22 years in the CIA – three and a half as head of a 18-man Osama bin Laden unit – Michael Scheuer told his bosses at Langley on 10 occasions that he had a clear opportunity to kill or capture the terrorist chief. On all 10 he was told to hold his fire.