What the world long suspected, has been confirmed by Edward Snowden (1) and Julian Assange (2) - two of the most wanted individuals - namely that US Government agencies have been illegally monitoring all its citizens' Internet and other electronic communication. (We will leave aside for the moment the fact that they have also been involved in creating and maintaining criminal actions of the worst kind, designed to justify foreign wars and introduce oppressive domestic measures!)
Governments, for as long as they have existed, have intercepted communications in order to protect itself against plots and subterfuge. (3) As the methods of communication have become more sophisticated, so the methods employed have advanced, so that they have never been so comprehensive or intrusive. This has obviously afforded Government enormous power to intervene and/or influence individual behaviour. If Government is corrupt in whole or part, there is little doubt the power will be used corruptly, to the detriment of all.
Many will conclude therefore that the "whistle blowers" (4) that have put their own freedom and safety on the line to reveal the truth, have done us all a great service and are true modern heroes, whether acknowledged as such by Government, or not.
Warren Bradley (5) in the comment below, draws attention to the fact that the scientific and technological capability of Government and related Companies, is always far in advance of what is acknowledged and commercially applied, as it is in all other fields. This means that circumstances that are sometimes 'pooh-poohed' as being impossible or purely paranoid, may in fact be both credible and utilised. Six decades of exponential development have occurred since "Q" came up with all those James Bonds gadgets! (6)
Hollywood fiction is often used to seed ideas or conversely incredulity that such a thing could happen. What is by nature "fiction" could surely not be real?
Charlie Chaplin in 'The Great Dictator' (7) may have mocked Hitler and the fascist philosophy, but in another sense it normalised and made comedic the barbaric actions of all the participants in that conflagration.
Similarly, when we laughed at Peter Sellers in the far more sinister 'Dr Strangelove' (8) trying to explain to his Russian counterpart how his country was about to be the subject of a nuclear attack, it may well have also engendered a belief that it could not possibly happen. That it had nearly occurred in 1962 and twenty years later in the early '80's, was thus ameliorated. Was it just a bad dream or theatrical fabrication?
Later war films such as the 1978 'Deer Hunter' (9) and 1979 'Apocalypse Now' (10) may have tried to portray the dark and damaging psychological consequences of violence and warfare, but the medium nevertheless distances and protects. By 1989 and 'Born on the Fourth of July' (11) may have presented a realistic and cynical view of the Vietnam War, and particularly the gulf between the heroic hype and the reality regarding the treatment of injured veterans, but it still did not prevent a real war in Iraq only a couple of years later.
Since the cataclysmic (and fraudulent) events of 2001, Hollywood and Media output has failed to produce anything that challenges the Government narrative. We have had to rely on the brave few who have been dismissed as 'Conspiracy Theorists' for the slow drip of truth.
Some of the more notable ones, many now deceased, are acknowledged below. (12) The fact that none of these have ever been rewarded by President, Monarchy, University, Professional Body or Nobel Institute, says something rather profound about the distinction that exists between power and truth. It would appear that entertainers and comedians are valued more highly.
So we now live in a society that is continuously and surreptitiously manipulated by advertising, social media and government agencies.
It may be argued that all this is not harmful or sinister. For example health campaigns to reduce smoking, alcohol consumption or obesity are considered beneficial but when viewed against the huge amount spent by advertisers and epidemiological factors, it can hardly be claimed this has been hugely successful.
Polluted air, alcohol and obesity diseases are at all-time highs, particularly amongst the less affluent. Governments say they are fighting pollution but the reality proves quite the opposite. World ecosystems have never been under greater strain and may be close to irretrievable break-down.
The trick is to maintain one thing in public but to allow or even encourage trends with the opposite effects on the other. Promoting diesel engines to "reduce air pollution" can be cited as one such example. Moving towards a cashless society might be another. The whole policy towards agriculture and fishing has had the effect of decimating nature. Whilst claiming that the health and welfare of the public is paramount, we see policies that consistently increase poverty and destitution.
On the international stage 'foreign aid' is misdirected and corrupted, whilst wars that have cause untold suffering are always promoted as having laudable aims. Governments claim to be opposed to drug use but have actively facilitated and promoted its manufacture and distribution as has been well documented in South America and Afghanistan. (13)
So we may conclude that government is deeply disingenuous in its policy and messaging. Even in democracies, it has become representative of wealth, status and special interests rather than the general population as it claims. Would the United States be spending more than half its budget on 'defence', when to get medical treatment citizens literally have to bankrupt themselves, if it was?
To get away with it, the public must be docile, compliant and easily persuaded. They also need to be conditioned into thinking that war is just a game and that enemies exist and have to be defeated, for which a continuous stream of media propaganda, camouflaged as movies genres (disaster, sci-fi, war), video games and advertising, all condition and mind control.
Meanwhile the REAL geopolitical objectives are pursued, which usually boil down to the control of natural resources and peoples, with a view to making money for the controlling elite.
Political society is a pyramidal hierarchy, in which power and wealth increase with altitude. Rewards are also a form of bribery to conform and support the structure which enables the few to dictate to the many whilst maintaining the illusion of "democracy".
Corruption and malfeasance at the top will ensure the venality of the whole. This can be the only explanation for the lies about 9/11, promulgated and perpetuated for over a decade and a half, and all the illegal and immoral terror predicated on it. Perhaps I should add that a Google search for "9/11 Plotters" as might be expected, brings up none of the following.
1. Edward Snowden. "By the end of 2016, the CIA's hacking division, which formally falls under the agency's Center for Cyber Intelligence (CCI), had over 5,000 registered users and had produced more than a thousand hacking systems, trojans, viruses, and other "weaponized" malware." See: http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/world-news/year-zero-series-wikileaks-cia-9988504
2. Julian Assange. "The claims are part of WikiLeaks sensational release of Vault7 Year Zero, reportedly leaked from the CIA’s Centre for Cyber Intelligence in Langley, Virginia." See: http://www.express.co.uk/news/world/777035/Wikileaks-Vault7-CIA-hacker-Frankfurt-US-consulate-Julian-Assange
5. 8.3.2017 FACEBOOK COMMENT here: https://www.facebook.com/
Warren Bradley When I worked for BT (call centre) in 1999-2002 my manager went to a seminar for BT's future projects. She was told that landlines will phase out and will by 2040 be gone entirely. They displayed countless technologies for them all to experience. She came back and said that she "held this flat, square, screen thing... She stroked the screen and all these little programs came up that could control things external of it. But it was also a phone and a camera and would have internet by the time it was released and that you could connect online by thin air... Everyone will have them" she said.
So, we laughed.... Hang on a minute, we have half a million compalints because people can't connect with a modem and a cable into the phone socket.... A device that does everything? Perhaps in 2020, hahaha, not in the next 10 years that's for sure.
How wrong were we? That technology had already been getting perfected for 15 years by then (she was told). That's just the level of technology fit for public consumption and one area of technology.
People seem to struggle in realising that by releasing the lower levels of technology upon the public desensitises us from the higher levels of technology.
By allowing us apps that tell us when our friends where last seen online, by telling you all every bleeding thing that I like on instagram or facebook and giving everyone the intrusive right to have a say all the time, this is removing the "issue" of privacy and allowing great steps to the erosion of all privacy.
You unleash the equivalent yet basic version upon the public, that way you can almost freely and blatantly use the more aggressive, intrusive and malignant version upon the public.
Never more so than kids computer games... War and murder games are not only desensitisation of murder and atrocities within the being of those who play them, but they are training the mentality of the next generation of soldier.... They are also the lower level of simulated war craft.... The lower level of combat is a game on a screen.... At the higher levels it is no different, an advance screen, an advanced joy stick, but real people dying.
But the higher level technology and its consequences are not felt to be so atrocious because we have this similar, public consumption version.
Anyway - the technology is truly ahead of its time and BT plays a huge part in it.... The public consumption version is that BT plc is British Telecom, landline rental and ET, Bob Hoskins and Buzzby on the TV. If you knew how much innovation and global involvement that organisation has involvement with you would be shocked. Your landline service is just a smoke screen for other intelligence taking place outside the public domain and working for them and having a good friend who worked at global levels of BT you can get a sense of the depth.
7. 'The Great Dictator' speech: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w8HdOHrc3OQ
8. 'Dr. Strangelove': https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qjN9yK4lhxU
9. 'The Deer Hunter': https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kE_zqVPr4HI
10. 'Apocalypse Now!' https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jts9suWIDlU
11. 'Born on the Fourth of July' https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aBADjCeFnuU
12. A few notable 'Truthers' (Please feel free to add your own recommendation - I'm afraid I ran out of energy)
Cristopher Bollyn: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cErMYgfBJ60
James H. Fetzer https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SaYepwRb5II
Peter Dale Scott https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SaYepwRb5II
Kevin Fenton 'Disconnecting the Dots' https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cErMYgfBJ60
"9/11 Planned Demolition requiring months of PREPARATION." https://www.facebook.com/TheNextStageInHumanEvolution/videos/1255395717864257/?hc_ref=NEWSFEED
Thierry Meyssan Its English edition is entitled 9/11: The Big Lie.
13. See: http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/266885. Drugs_Oil war
Drugs, Oil & War: The United States in Afghanistan, Colombia & Indochina
A GILDED FICTION IS STILL A FICTION
Britain’s post-truth ‘Iraqistan’ memorial insults both veterans and reality, A gilded fiction is still a fiction, after all.
First published on the International Business Times
Given the gulf between Britain’s imperial self-image and the unheroic truth, I always felt that the inevitable memorial to our recent failed wars would be off the mark when it arrived.
Yet first impressions indicate the star-studded unveiling in London’s Victoria Embankment Gardens on Thursday 9 March of a new ”Iraqistan” statue will plumb new depths of post-truthery.
Folding three wars of aggression into one fictional humanitarian aid operation is bad enough, I thought… and that was before I realised this latest extravaganza is the brainchild of the Murdoch press and was part-funded by global arms giant BAE Systems.
This state of affairs rules the Iraq Afghanistan Memorial out of representing the reality of the wars for many of the veterans who served in them or, indeed, the forgotten people of the victim nations.
I am not denying for a moment the immense skill apparent in the artist’s work but he appears to have impaled himself on the same bayonet as the post 9/11 media: reiterating what the establishment says as if it were incontrovertibly true. A gilded fiction is still a fiction, after all.
The surest thing about the memorial is its parentage. It is obviously the progeny of an arms firm, the gutter press and a military and political establishment desperate to draw a line under embarrassing defeats in Iraq and Afghanistan with a view to repeating them elsewhere in future.
This desperation is captured perfectly in a Ministry of Defence promotional video tweeted ahead of unveiling which exhibits depths of self-delusion I haven’t witnessed since I last encountered a senior British military officer.
In less than two minutes, the slick and emotively scored promo re-brands three wars of aggression – the signal foreign policy disasters of our time – as a 25 year long humanitarian aid operation carried out in uniform.
In a masterclass of selective memorialisation, it appears there will be no references at all to dodgy dossiers, extrajudicial drone assassinations, massive refugee crises, oil, Isis, a re-energised Taliban, rendition, Tony Blair or any of the other tentacled horrors which have come to define Britain’s recent adventures in the sandpit.
As a recent veteran myself I can tell you I was surprised to find that far from violently occupying those far-off impoverished places, the British military had in fact “championed democracy”, “protected British interests” and, most surprisingly of all, “rebuilt villages”.
One can only assume that the latter activity took place after the occupying forces had levelled said hamlets from the air, which somehow makes the sentiment a little less impressive.
Despite the attempt to soften the wars by folding civilian aid and development workers in with the military, this new addition must be seen in much the same way as the Chilcot Inquiry.
While the two-million word report was the establishment’s investigation of itself, this is the establishment’s memorial to what it wishes the wars had been: just, right, necessary and worth the cost.
Prince Harry, who last year outrageously shook hands with George W Bush at the Invictus Games for wounded soldiers, will headline the opening in his apparently self-elected role as the soldiers’ champion.
Naturally his dear grandmother, who uttered not a squeak in public against the wars, has been booked to look on.
When I first spotted and raised these discrepancies, I was understandably challenged for my view. Some people will appreciate being honoured in this manner, I was told.
I agree. Some people will be taken in by this exercise in bleaching the truth out of history. Just as many others, myself included, will not.
For veterans who have woken up this “Iraqistan” memorial will recall a time when we believed that the UK, and the British military, was fundamentally in the business of good causes rather than imperial adventures. A time which has passed.
For those of us who have come to realize what we were involved in our testament reads differently to that of the government, the military, arms firms or the Sun newspaper.
We will recall Afghanistan as what it was: a knee-jerk war against some of the poorest people in the world. A war in which we engaged initially to stay in with the United States and, after 2006, to recover our image in American eyes after utter failure in Basra.
Likewise we will recall the British role in Iraq as what it was: that of a junior henchman in the mother of all heists. And a failed heist at that.
On reflection, perhaps there is something to this flattering re-brand to delude future generations. Even if only ironically.
It may not be remotely based on what actually occurred in the wars but it captures precisely the new military bluster of the post-truth age combined with the established tendency of our leaders to overreach based on a cocktail of personal ambition, wishful thinking and faulty information.
Joe Glenton is a member of VFP UK and author of Soldier Box, published by Verso Books.