Saturday, January 05, 2008

ADVISORS TO THE CANDIDATES difference on the basic principle of, are you against the killing of civilians and are you willing to enforce the murder laws. If we were willing to enforce the murder laws, the headquarters of each of these candidates could be raided, and various advisers and many candidates could be hauled away by the cops, because they have backed various actions that, under established principles like the Nuremberg Principles, like the principles set up in the Rwanda tribunals, the Bosnia tribunals, things that are unacceptable, like aggressive war, like the killing of civilians for political purposes. So, in a basic sense, there is no choice.

Advisers to Hillary Rodham Clinton include many former top officials in President Clinton’s administration:

former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright, she was the main force behind the Iraq sanctions that killed more than 400,000 Iraqi civilians

former National Security Adviser Samuel Berger,

former UN Ambassador Richard Holbrooke. in the Carter administration he was the one who oversaw the shipment of weapons to the Indonesian military as they were invading—illegally invading East Timor and killing a third of the population there, and he was the one who kept the UN Security Council from enforcing its resolution against that invasion.

General Wesley Clark, he was the one who ran the bombing of Serbia in the former Yugoslavia, came out and publicly said that he was going after civilian targets, like electrical plants, like the TV station there.

Strobe Talbott, he was the one who, during the Clinton administration, oversaw Russia policy, a backing of Yeltsin, which resulted in turning over the national wealth to the oligarchs and a drop in life expectancy in much of Russia of about fifteen years—massive, massive death.

General Jack Keane, Michael O’Hanlon and others. various backers of the Iraq invasion and occupation and the recent escalation

Senator Barack Obama’s list includes

President Carter’s National Security Adviser Zbigniew Brzezinski, created the whole Afghan jihadi movement, the movement that produced Osama bin Laden.

Anthony Lake, he was the main force behind the US invasion of Haiti in the mid-Clinton years during which they brought back Aristide essentially in political chains, pledged to support a World Bank/IMF overhaul of the economy, which resulted in an increase in malnutrition deaths among Haitians and set the stage for the current ongoing political disaster in Haiti.

former counterterrorism czar Richard Clarke,

former Middle East negotiator Dennis Ross. advised Clinton and both Bushes. He oversaw US policy toward Israel/Palestine. He pushed the principle that the legal rights of the Palestinians, the rights recognized under international law, must be subordinated to the needs of the Israeli government—in other words, their desires, their desires to expand to do whatever they want in the Occupied Territories. And Ross was one of the people who, interestingly, led the political assault on former Democratic President Jimmy Carter. Carter, no peacenik—I mean, Carter is the one who bears ultimate responsibility for that Timor terror that Holbrooke was involved in. But Ross led an assault on him, because, regarding Palestine, Carter was so bold as to agree with Bishop Desmond Tutu of South Africa that what Israel was doing in the Occupied Territories was tantamount to apartheid. And so, Ross was one of those who fiercely attacked him.

Sarah Sewall, who heads a human rights center at Harvard and is a former Defense official, she wrote the introduction to General Petraeus’s Marine Corps/Army counterinsurgency handbook, the handbook that is now being used worldwide by US troops in various killing operations. That’s the Obama team.General Merrill McPeak, an Air Force man, who not long after the Dili massacre in East Timor in ’91 that you and I survived, he was—I happened to see on Indonesian TV shortly after that—there was General McPeak overseeing the delivery to Indonesia of US fighter planes.Rudolph Giuliani’s advisers include Norman Podhoretz, one of the fathers of the neoconservative movement.

Senator John Edwards is a little different. The list of his foreign advisers is not as complete, so it’s not as clear exactly where they may be coming from, but it’s interesting. Last night on TV, one of the top Edwards advisers, “Mudcat” Saunders, was complaining about the fact that there are 35,000 lobbyists in Washington. And it appears, from the Edwards list, that many of the military lobbyists are working on the Edwards foreign policy team, because the names that—the Edwards names that are out there mainly come from the Army and the Air Force and the Navy Material Command. Those are the portions of the Pentagon that do the Defense contracts, that do the deals with the big companies like Raytheon and Boeing, etc. One of those listed on the Edwards team is the lobbyist for the big military contractor EADS. So, although Edwards talks about going after lobbyists, if he tries to go after the military lobbyists, he may get a little blowback from his own advisers.

Rudolph Giuliani’s advisers include

Norman Podhoretz, one of the fathers of the neoconservative movement.

Daniel Pipes, who—and I don’t remember if you had mentioned, but—has been leading the charge against “Islamofascism” on college campuses, has put out his Campus Watch, in terms of going after professors that he deems are not pro-Israel enough.

Martin Kramer, Stephen Rosen, Peter Berkowitz of the Hoover Institution. He has basically a small galaxy of neoconservatives from familiar think tanks as the American Enterprise Institute, the Heritage Foundation, Hoover, the Hudson.

Ex-Senator Robert Kasten, an old major backer of the Pakistani military dictatorships and the Suharto dictatorship in Indonesia, he’s another key Giuliani adviser.

John McCain’s list of official and formal policy advisers includes

former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger,

General Colin Powell,

William Kristol of The Weekly Standard, and

former CIA Director James Woolsey. One of

General Alexander Haig, who oversaw the US policy of mass terror killings of civilians in Guatemala, El Salvador, Nicaragua and Honduras, when American nuns and religious workers were abducted, raped and murdered by the Salvadoran National Guard. General Haig said those nuns died in an exchange of gunfire, the pistol-packing nuns.

Max Boot, who now points to El Salvador, where 70,000 civilians were killed by American-backed death squads, as a model counterinsurgency, a model for what the US should be doing today.

Bud McFarlane from the Reagan administration, who was a key backer of the Contras.

Brent Scowcroft, who these days is popular with some liberals because he opposes—he opposed the Iraq invasion, who is a leader of the realist school—the realist school basically says, yes, kill civilians, but make sure you win the war. went to China right after the Tiananmen Square massacre and reassured the Chinese leadership, “Don’t worry about it, we’re still behind you.”

Mitt Romney’s top advisers is

Cofer Black, the former CIA official who now serves as vice chair of Blackwater Worldwide. a longtime CIA operative who was one of the key people behind the invasion of Afghanistan. During the course of that, according to Bob Woodward, he went in and said, “We’re going to go into Afghanistan. We’re going to cut their heads off.” He’s the one who organized Detachment 88 in Indonesia just recently, the supposed antiterrorist outfit that recently went after a Papuan human rights lawyer

Mark Falcoff and Roger Noriega, Two key figures in backing the old US policy in Central America, are also on the Romney team. And

Dan Senor, who viewers probably remember as the voice of the early invasion and occupation of Iraq, he’s one of the Romney guys. Now, as you mentioned—

Fred Thompson.

Vice President Dick Cheney’s daughter Elizabeth is advising

Allan Nairn, Independent journalist. Runs the web-blog “News and Comment.”

Kelley Beaucar Vlahos, Freelance journalist in Washington. Her article on presidential advisers titled “War Whisperers” appeared in the American Conservative.

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