Gangsta Banksters, Afghanistan & Drugs -- Just When You Thought You Couldn’t Hate Them Any More Deeply ...
(567 Obama-dumping days until 2012 election-Hugh's Obama's Scandals List)
Sometimes I come across an electrifying article that inspires simultaneous dread, enlightenment and validation. An article providing that AHA moment, confirming my worst suspicions and connecting some troubling, global-big-picture dots. Dots-connecting that the pen-flashlight narrow, manipulatively selective, milli-second illuminations by Western corporate media don’t begin to help ordinary Americans or other Westerners achieve.
The last article that gave me the big AHA moment was by Ellen Brown in Asia Times entitled “Libya All About Oil, Or Central Banking?” Ms. Brown revealed that Libya it turns out is a threat to all those private international banksters out there because it, and Gaddafi, had the AUDACITY to establish a state-owned banking system. The outrageousness of such a legitimate act of economic independence!!!! Off with their heads!! (Which apparently is happening, since Geneva Conventions stopped mattering long ago and we are backing some unknown barbaric entities over there, but this is the era of “pragmatism” a/k/a America so on the wrong side of history, but as long as the media calls our convenient proxies the good guys who seriously gives a shit any more? Might, after all, makes right. Gangsta rules.)
Anyway, re Libya and the banksters, it would seem the US government along with NATO were and are certainly willing to offer up the lives of their sons and daughters, and their toolboxes of massive weaponry to strong-arm, shake down, whatever, little Libya into bankster subservience, or at the very least kill and displace thousands and thousands in trying. Oil companies and bankers. The magical “US interests” and/or the "NATO stabilization" bullshit that cause millions to die.
Corporate cronyism demands massive, gratuitous (well, not to the Banksters) war-mongering, violent intimidation along with ultimate, fascistic land and resource grabbing. Mr. “Days Not Weeks for the Libyan Humanitarian Intervention” a/k/a “Say Anything” Obama and the other two Trojan Horse government branches of corporatism will clearly do all they can to help the banksters and their economic world domination and exploitation agendas.
Aha! So every nook and cranny of the globe must suffer the banksters’ economic terrorism or suffer first US along with NATO’s military terrorism. And instead of the nauseating evil of this Libyan realpolitick being reported by our media, it is all wrapped up and ribboned, a/k/a propagandized, as a “humanitarian intervention.”
NOW TAKE A DEEP BREATH, CUZ THERE IS YET ANOTHER SOCIOPATHIC SUB-BASEMENT OF BANKSTER/US GOVERNMENT DEPRAVITY TO FATHOM.
The Gangsta Banksters, again militarily enabled by their crony US Government, are hip deep in promoting drug trafficking and laundering drug money.
“Shhhhhhhhhhh.” It is one damn, massive little secret, is it not?
Jeremy Hammond, an independent political analyst, has written a startling expose entitled “The Afghan Drug Trade and the Elephant in the Room” The money (pun intended) statements that Hammond makes in this article:
According to United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) Executive Director Antonio Maria Costa, drug money was used to help prop up the U.S. economy following the 2008 financial crisis. "In many instances, drug money is currently the only liquid investment capital," Costa has said. "In the second half of 2008, liquidity was the banking system’s main problem and hence liquid capital became an important factor." The UNODC found evidence that "interbank loans were funded by money that originated from drug trade and other illegal activities," Costa said, and there were "signs that some banks were rescued in that way.
In other words, big money interests and power players within the United States have a financial interest in the preservation of the global drug trade, and U.S. policies and foreign interventions have often historically been aligned with that goal – including in present day Afghanistan.
While on one hand helping to dispel certain persistent myths about the Afghan drug trade, on the other hand, the authors of the FP article nevertheless effectively argue in favor of maintaining this status quo. More serious – and less hypocritical – analysis of the global drug trade will be required if the international community ever hopes to tackle the Afghan opium problem.
Hammond supplies some real historical background of the US military's relationship to the drug trade in Afghanistan that defies the disinforming mythmaking of our government and corporate media, especially that it is ONLY the Taliban producing, trafficking and profit-making from Afghanistan opium.
As the CIC report also points out, after the Taliban banned and effectively reduced opium production in 2001, "The locus of production moved to the territory controlled by the warlords" – that is, the "pro-drug dealing warlords aligned with the United States and its coalition allies." After the U.S. overthrew the Taliban, opium production once again soared to record levels. The CIC report adds, "At present, insurgents appear to be capturing only a small share of those trafficking revenues."
The authors, in their FP article, praise the fact that "The DEA and military … try to selectively disrupt the traffickers who are linked most closely to the insurgency." They also observe, in challenging the notion that "American Drug Addicts are Supporting the Taliban", that the principle markets for the Afghan opium trade are in Asia and Europe and that the U.S. "consumes only about 5 percent of the world’s illegal opium, and most of that comes from Colombia and Mexico."
It’s a familiar pattern (during the Soviet-Afghan war, for example, the principle beneficiary of U.S. financing for the mujahedeen was Afghanistan’s leading drug lord, Gulbuddin Hekmatyar), yet the authors carry on as thought the U.S. was serious about fighting the drug problem in Afghanistan.
This is a logical absurdity. It is axiomatic that if we are actually serious about tackling the destructive Afghan opium trade, we must recognize and confront the uncomfortable and inconvenient truth, as Professor Peter Dale Scott argues persuasively in his book "American War Machine: Deep Politics, the CIA Global Drug Connection, and the Road to Afghanistan", that the U.S. itself plays a central role in the global drug trade.
And the problem goes well beyond the historical fact that the U.S. has frequently aligned itself with drug traffickers and turned a blind eye to their activities. The U.S. economy itself is addicted to drugs. As Professor Scott notes in his book, "A Senate staff report has estimated 'that $500 billion to $1 trillion in criminal proceeds are laundered through banks worldwide each year, with about half of that amount moved through United States banks.’ The London Independent reported in 2004 that drug trafficking constitutes 'the third biggest global commodity in cash terms after oil and the arms trade.’"
A more recent report by the same House subcommittee, the Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations, offered a slightly revised estimate of $500 to $1.5 trillion dollars laundered through the global financial system each year. "The failure of U.S. banks to take adequate steps to prevent money laundering through their correspondent bank accounts is not a new or isolated problem," the report stated. "It is longstanding, widespread and ongoing."
Indeed, the London Guardian just reported a case-in-point on how cocaine smugglers in Mexico had laundered money "through one of the biggest banks in the United States: Wachovia, now part of the giant Wells Fargo", which "became a beneficiary of $25bn in taxpayers’ money" following the 2008 stock market crash. This case represents "only the tip of an iceberg", the Guardian notes.
$25 billion of taxpayer money went to Wells Fargo, which inherited Wachovia with its cocaine smuggling clientele. Wonder what wholesome Lizzie Warren would think about all of this nightmare? I'll lay odds the oh so powerful powers that be would and will do anything to keep her away from it.
All that posturing about a “war on drugs” by our sham government reps? Drug trafficking and money laundering is profit-making. To psychopathic corporatism, morality has no place. Ergo, to the US government, evilly exploiting its -- our? -- military to enable evil, I say again, morality has no place. It wasn’t that long ago I would assume this would be too much of a moral challenge even for the Bush regime. But, no. And, repeat, not for the precious Obama regime, either.
Eradication of poppy crops Hammond reveals has not been successful for all these years. Yet, that fight has resulted in horrifying violence and deaths among US soldiers as well as Afghan policemen. Afghanistan provides 90% of the world population’s heroin production. And we couldn’t begin to impact that after 10 years of fighting over there? Wow. That's because what our government says it is intending to do or pretending to do and what it is actually doing, so often, especially during these dark and dirty Bush/Obama years, don't mesh.
Now we have selective eradication of insurgent poppy crops and that enables the pro-government war lords to have their monopoly, as the international banksters enjoy their profit-making from the laundering end of it. And the mandate for the war on drugs? The human toll of drug addiction? Well, since law and empathy do not seem to matter so much any more, what the hey?
We’ve entered even deeper into the corporatism heart of darkness, folks.
Oil, armaments and drugs. Hot commodities. The world's three largest according to Mr. Hammond. Why would morality and legality and empathy and a long-term sensibility of human, environmental and geo-political consequences impact corporate cronyism profit-making addictions? Human welfare? Not worthy of consideration.
One comment Hammond makes is particularly poignant and reminds us of the tragic human dimension of drug trafficking:
But what they neglect to mention [the FP authors] is the untold number of soldiers sent to Afghanistan who have become drug addicts. Despite the claims of the U.S. government that it is actively engaged in trying to curtail the drug trade in Afghanistan, heroin is readily available to U.S. troops, including just outside of the Bagram military base. It’s a problem nobody seems to want to talk about, but indications are that drug use and addiction among soldiers is a serious problem, just as it was for veterans of the Vietnam war, thanks in no small part to the CIA’s role in protecting and participating in the drug trade in the Golden Triangle.
So soldiers that don't die in Afghanistan have a good shot at becoming heroin addicts along with the millions globally purchasing the life-destroying drug. So it goes. But, again, as long as the war profiteers make their trillions, anything goes.