Bu-lat-lat (boo-lat-lat) verb: to search, probe, investigate, inquire; to unearth facts

Volume 3, Number 3              February 16 -22, 2003            Quezon City, Philippines

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Bush Buddies’ Blunders and Bluster Bare Deceit

By Joel Garduce, Center for Anti-Imperialist Studies 

On the run-up to the second globally-coordinated anti-war mass actions in the world’s emerging First Quarter Storm of 2003, the Bush regime and its minions in London and Manila were in desperate throes to justify an impending war now perceived widely as unholy following its rejection by no less than Pope John Paul II.

Unites States (U.S.) State Secretary Colin Powell’s recent presentation before the United Nations tried to convince the world that Saddam possessed weapons of mass destruction despite findings to the contrary by the UN weapons inspection team led by Hans Blix. Powell, however, touted satellite photos that could easily be mistaken for anything; intercepted phone conversations among Iraqi officials that were of doubtful veracity; and an Iraq dossier given to him by Blair which Powell found up-to-date and rigorous.

No sooner than the last words came out of Powell at his UN presentation, our favorite little brown American came out endorsing Powell’s show, claiming even that her favorite U.S. ex-general had made the definitive case for invading Iraq.

Downright dishonesty by Blair, Powell

But so soon after Powell’s bravado, came the shocker of a revelation from British media: the dossier prepared by Blair’s staff and cited by Powell was a flagrant plagiarism of a graduate student’s research, down to the punctuation errors! Worse, the dossier’s Iraq data was culled from 12 years ago, just after the 1991 Gulf War.

Blair had nowhere to hide; 10 Downing Street admitted the plagiarism and horrendous scholarship. This ignominious boo-boo shot down whatever shred of credibility Powell’s UN show had, and exposed the dishonesty of the Bush-Blair rah-rah team.

Bush’s partners at Big Media thought as well. The implications of the blunder must not be articulated in U.S. mainstream media, lest Powell be thought by millions of Americans as an unthinking diplomat easily taken to deceptions wittingly laid by his own allies.

Time for another terror alert!

So, conveniently, the Bush spin doctors spun yet another terror alert on the unsuspecting American public, ratcheting up the hysteria beyond yellow, medium-level alert to orange, high-level alert. To complete the dramatics, talk about packing up on duct tape dominated the U.S. airwaves.

Hardly had Americans completed their panic-buying list, comes Powell on the media forefront once more. Thinking his UN claims linking Saddam to the evil al-Qaeda had to be further reinforced in the U.S. public’s mind, Powell went on air in front of a Senate panel on Feb. 11 to claim he had read the transcript of a video tape of “bin Laden – or who we believe to be bin Laden” --- that will be shown later that day on the Al-Jazeera Arab satellite station. Powell said the man he believed to be bin Laden in that video spoke of how he is “in partnership with Iraq.” We all know what that means: the bearded Osama---remember him as the supposed mastermind terrorist of 9/11?---is in cahoots with the mustachioed Saddam!

The Bin Laden tape fiasco

Only problem was, when Powell gave his Senate testimony, Al-Jazeera chief editor Ibrahim Hilal in Cairo said his station had no such tape of bin Laden, and had to deny therefore that it will air a new tape of bin Laden speaking to the Iraqi people. Despite Al-Jazeera’s denial, CNN buttressed Powell’s claim and insisted that the tape will be played.

And lo and behold! Just as Powell and CNN so boldly and “precognitively” predicted, the bin Laden tape did emerge and was aired. (And how did they get to know that, even ahead of Al-Jazeera itself??) As expected from a bin Laden tape, the man in front of the camera ranted against America and threatened more attacks.

But surprise, the man Powell believed to be bin Laden didn’t endorse Saddam. He even called on the Iraqi people to rise up and oust the “infidel” Saddam, something bin Laden’s supposed arch adversaries in the Bush administration can find complete common cause with.

Hey wait! That doesn’t jibe with Powell’s claims of a Saddam-bin Laden/al-Qaeda partnership! So rather than paint Powell as a liar, the transcript had to be changed.

And that is what you will currently hear and read in all news accounts of this new purported bin Laden tape, including those on the Internet.

Unfortunately for the warmongers, some dumb, unpatriotic, terrorist-loving Americans made the mistake of making a screen capture of the pertinent section of the original news account at the MSNBC website. And so, here is the screen capture (underscoring supplied):


Gloria and Blas’ diplomatic duplicity

Meanwhile, President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo and her Foreign Affairs Secretary Blas Ople felt compelled to comfort their utterly isolated American patrons by pulling off a propaganda blitz of their own. They expelled Iraqi diplomat Husham Hussein on unsubstantiated charges of consorting with the bandit group Abu Sayyaf and even-- heaven of heavens! –- the National Democratic Front.

The problem with this diplomatic move is that, apart from the flimsy accusations, Gloria and Ople are indulging in bloody diplomatic deceit. For in the case of confirmed American terrorist Michael Terrence Meiring – who was actually caught with explosives in his possession last May 2002 – Gloria and Ople turned a blind eye to the U.S. embassy’s coddling of this CIA operative, whose vice consul Michael Newbill actually paid for the terrorist’s medical bills.

Why, oh why, rabid antiterrorists Gloria and Blas, did you not ever declare U.S. Embassy vice consul Newbill persona non grata, and even reprimand U.S. Ambassador Ricciardone for his incompetence at curbing terrorist coddlers under his watch, in keeping true to your pronouncements that your government will train its guns on anyone who harbors terrorists, whoever they may be? Hmmm?

Sadly, the bumbling deceit doesn’t stop there. A BBC report last February 13 claimed that the Philippine ambassador to Iraq was abducted, along with her family. But when local AM station dzMM interviewed Grace Escalante, charge d’affaires and acting ambassador to Iraq, at 10:40 a.m. last Valentine’s Day, the Filipino diplomat vehemently denied being abducted, and assured the public the Iraqi government was treating her quite nicely. 

Big media part of the Bush team

This trail of blunders and bluster confirms the intimate involvement of Big Media in this oil-soaked war being pushed by Bush and Co. Clearly from the incidents above, Big Media plays a major role in covering up the dodder, desperation and brazenness of the Bush gang. It’s key to keeping in check the teeming hundreds of millions from thinking for themselves and unmasking the schemes of oppression by the powerful few.

The power elite has the gall to do whatever it takes in advancing their antidemocratic designs, for they will be ably aided by Big Media to cover up whatever bloody mess ensues, to fiercely conceal the actual depths of world crisis and who actually created the crisis, and hold us uninformed of the keys to our authentic liberation---we, the G6B, the Group of 6 Billion---from megaoppressors and megaterrorists.

We need to free our minds from this enslavement, and aim to equip ourselves with the analytical tools that will truly liberate us. Free from this mental captivity, we can thus think for ourselves, turn Big Media on its head, reacquaint ourselves with the truth hidden by the matrix of lies, and step up our work for genuine peace and freedom.

There are signs we’re getting there. As this piece goes to press, the globally-coordinated anti-war protests commenced with a 10,000-strong anti-war rally here in Manila; an unprecedented demonstration in Melbourne, Australia, with about 500,000 coming together; and scores of thousands more in Seoul, south Korea; Auckland, New Zealand; Canberra and Sydney, also in Australia; Tokyo, Bangkok, and Sarajevo, Bosnia. At least 600 flashpoints would have dotted the weekend anti-war global map. As the world turned this February 14 and 15, thus spread the sunshine. CAIS/Bulatlat.com

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