Thursday, Jun 04th, 2020 - 09:36:37


Hijacking Catastrophe: 9/11, Fear & the Selling of American Empire

'Hijacking Catastrophe: 9/11, Fear & the Selling of American Empire examines how a radical fringe of the Republican Party used the trauma of the 9/11 terror attacks to advance a pre-existing agenda to radically transform American foreign policy while rolling back civil liberties and social programs at home. The documentary places the Bush administration’s false justifications for war in Iraq within the larger context of a two-decade struggle by neoconservatives to dramatically increase military spending in the wake of the cold war, and to expand American power globally by means of military force. At the same time, the documentary argues that the Bush administration has sold this radical and controversial plan for aggressive American military intervention by deliberately manipulating intelligence, political imagery, and the fears of the American people after 9/11. Narrated by Julian Bond, Hijacking Catastrophe features interviews with more than twenty prominent political observers, including Pentagon whistleblower Lt. Colonel Karen Kwiatkowski, who witnessed first-hand how the Bush administration set up a sophisticated propaganda operation to link the anxieties generated by 9/11 to a pre-existing foreign policy agenda that included a preemptive war on Iraq. At its core, the film places the deceptions of the Bush administration within the larger frame of questions seldom posed in the mainstream: What, exactly, is the agenda that drove the administration's pre-war deceptions? How is 9/11 being used to sell this agenda? And what are the stakes for America, Americans, and the world if this agenda succeeds in being fully implemented during a second Bush term?'
+ Hijacking Catastrophe:
+ Hijacking Catastrophe: 9/11, Fear & the Selling of American Empire (2004):
+ Watch the Full Documentary (10 Parts):

'Ullman and Wade argue that there have been military applications that fall within some of the concepts of shock and awe. They enumerate nine examples:

+ Overwhelming force: The "application of massive or overwhelming force" to "disarm, incapacitate, or render the enemy militarily impotent with as few casualties to ourselves and to non-combatants as possible."
+ Hiroshima and Nagasaki: The establishment of shock and awe through "instant, nearly incomprehensible levels of massive destruction directed at influencing society writ large, meaning its leadership and public, rather than targeting directly against military or strategic objectives even with relatively few numbers or systems."
+ Massive bombardment: Described as "precise destructive power largely against military targets and related sectors over time."
+ Blitzkrieg: The "intent was to apply precise, surgical amounts of tightly focused force to achieve maximum leverage but with total economies of scale."
+ Sun Tzu: The "selective, instant decapitation of military or societal targets to achieve shock and awe."
+ Haitian example: "Imposing shock and awe through a show of force and indeed through deception, misinformation, and disinformation."
+ The Roman legions: "Achieving shock and awe rests in the ability to deter and overpower an adversary through the adversary's perception and fear of his vulnerability and our own invincibility."
+ Decay and default: "The imposition of societal breakdown over a lengthy period, but without the application of massive destruction."

Rapid dominance is defined by its authors, Harlan K. Ullman and James P. Wade, as attempting "to affect the will, perception, and understanding of the adversary to fight or respond to our strategic policy ends through imposing a regime of Shock and Awe." Further, rapid dominance will "impose this overwhelming level of Shock and Awe against an adversary on an immediate or sufficiently timely basis to paralyze its will to carry on ... [to] seize control of the environment and paralyze or so overload an adversary's perceptions and understanding of events that the enemy would be incapable of resistance at the tactical and strategic levels." Introducing the doctrine in a report to the United States' National Defense University in 1996, Ullman and Wade describe it as an attempt to develop a post-Cold War military doctrine for the United States. Rapid dominance and shock and awe, they write, may become a "revolutionary change" as the United States military is reduced in size and information technology is increasingly integrated into warfare.[5] Subsequent U.S. military authors have written that rapid dominance exploits the "superior technology, precision engagement, and information dominance" of the United States.'
+ Shock and Awe (National Defense University of the United States):

'Hijacking Catastrophe begins with a series of clips of Bush administration officials making claims that Iraq has weapons of mass destruction. In one of these, Bush describes Saddam Hussein as a “homicidal dictator addicted to weapons of mass destruction.” Then, it cuts to a series of clips from the mainstream media months into the war; the pundits and anchors all act surprised that none of these weapons were found. We are then reminded of the well-known comment by Hermann Goering, a Nazi official tried at Nuremburg: “The people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy ... All you have to do is tell them that they are being attacked ... and denounce the peacemakers for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same in any country.” The film, however, places the entire onus for the war on the group of “neoconservatives” within the Bush administration, namely Donald Rumsfeld, Dick Cheney and Paul Wolfowitz. It outlines Wolfowitz’s “Defense Planning Guidance,” a 1992 Defense Department document that argued for global hegemony as an aim for US foreign policy in the aftermath of the Cold War. The film argues that the “Wolfowitz doctrine” was essentially abandoned by all but a few people within the extreme right of the Republican Party. These are dubbed neoconservatives. Rather than approaching the problem from a class and historical perspective and pointing to the widespread approval that the American ruling elite as a whole, despite tactical differences, has given these policies, the film inaccurately asserts that the neoconservatives were the cause of the shift. According to the filmmakers, this tiny group has essentially “hijacked” US foreign policy. From this flows the argument that all Americans must forget their differences and unite to get rid of these hijackers and set US foreign policy back on the proper track. This argument does not hold water. Consider only that Rumsfeld, Cheney, Wolfowitz, and other “neoconservatives” have held high level government positions for decades. Moreover, the invasion and occupation of Iraq received the endorsement of virtually the entire American ruling elite, and still does, despite the unfolding disaster! Why did the majority of Democrats in Congress, including their eventual presidential candidate John Kerry, support the invasion? Why did no one in the mainstream media raise a protest or even question the government line? That Hijacking Catastrophe does not even pose these questions demonstrates that the filmmakers’ objectivity and determination to expose has a certain limit. Their support for the Democratic Party imposes that limit. The film points quite correctly to the formation of the Project for a New American Century (PNAC) in 1997, which based itself explicitly on popularizing and implementing the Wolfowitz doctrine, as a significant event. We hear chilling passages from its September 2000 Statement, “Rebuilding America’s Defenses.” Arguing for a dramatic expansion of military spending in order to deter any potential rival, the document seems to predict the 9/11 attacks a year before they occurred: “The process of transformation, even if it brings revolutionary change, is likely to be a long one, absent some catastrophic and catalyzing event—like a new Pearl Harbor.”'
+ From the days of “Anybody but Bush”:


'Santa Muerte is also known by a wide variety of eponyms: the Skinny Lady (la flaquita) the Bony Lady (la Huesuda), the White Girl (la Niña Blanca), the White Sister (la Hermana Blanca), the Pretty Girl (la Niña Bonita), the Powerful Lady (la Dama Poderosa), and the Godmother (la Madrina). Santa Muerte is referred to by a number of monikers such as Señora de las Sombras ("Lady of the Shadows"), Señora Blanca ("White Lady"), Señora Negra ("Black Lady"), Niña Santa ("Holy Girl"), Santa Sebastiana (St. Sebastienne) or Doña Bella Sebastiana ("Our Beautiful Lady Sebastienne") and La Flaca ("The Skinny Lady").'
+ La Flaquita:
+ "Psychic Dreaming" (1991):
+ "Stage 1, Stage 2, Stage 3...":
+ Bonus Track:

'The next "shock and awe" campaign may be advertisements for hot sauce, pesticides, video games or even condoms. The phrase that described bombing attacks on Baghdad is listed in 28 applications with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office for use in marketing a variety of products. The first application, for fireworks, was filed March 20, the day U.S. bombs started raining on the Iraqi capital. With fighting in Iraq all but finished, entrepreneurs are trying to cash in on names and phrases popularized during the war. Trademark applications include those for Operation Iraqi Freedom firearms, a Baghdad Bob bobblehead figure and key chains picturing Saddam Hussein on an ace of spades with a target on his face. "Companies and individuals say, 'Oh, that's a neat name,' " said Rob McCutcheon, a patent and trademark lawyer with Davis Munck in Dallas. "People can see the value in some of these phrases." So far, the most prominent trademark being used on war- related products is an old one -- the Hoyle joker owned by the U.S. Playing Card Co. The company licensed the trademark to closely held Great USA Flags, which is selling "officially licensed" cards showing 55 wanted Iraqis. "Mortal Kombat" creator Midway Games Inc. is among the applicants seeking to use "shock and awe" on video games. Sony Corp.'s computer entertainment unit, maker of the PlayStation 2 video game console, also filed for use of the name but said it has dropped its application. Neither company returned calls seeking comment. "It's such a simple phrase, but it's also direct," said Eric Karich, a patent and trademark lawyer. "That's a great quality in a trademark."'
+ Seeking to Cash In on 'Shock and Awe':




'Article 51 of the United Nations Charter makes clear that “Nothing in the present charter shall impair the inherent right of individual or collective self defence if an armed attack occurs against a member of the United Nations.” The United States has long held that, consistent with Article 51 and customary international law, a state may use force in self-defense: 1. if it has been attacked, or 2. if an armed attack is legitimately deemed to be imminent. This interpretation is also consistent with our domestic notion of self-defense as applied in the criminal and tort law contexts. The case is, without question, easier where there has been a clear attack or where there has been a direct authorization from the United Nations Security Council. After the terrible attacks of 9/11, the United States, with the cooperation of its allies, launched an attack against Al Qaeda and the Taliban. This action could be considered preemptive, in a sense, as the United States was not acting in retaliation, but actually, to prevent and deter imminent attack. If it were necessary to apply the test of necessity before action, the events of that September could be viewed as establishing that the enemy intended to attack again. Applying this theory, after the first aggressive strike, United States action was justified so long as the enemy maintained his capacity to attack. But the question remains, short of an actual armed attack, how long does a State have to wait before preemptive measures can be taken to prevent serious harm? In the era of weapons of mass destruction, definitions within the traditional framework of the use of force in self-defense and the concept of preemption must adapt to the nature and capabilities of today’s threats. Within the traditional framework of self-defense, a preemptive use of proportional force is justified only out of necessity. The concept of necessity includes both a credible, imminent threat and the exhaustion of peaceful remedies.'
+ The Legal Basis for Preemption:
+ Individual and Collective Self-Defense in Article 51 of the Charter of the United Nations:

Julian Bond

'Julian Bond, a charismatic figure of the 1960s civil rights movement, a lightning rod of the anti-Vietnam War campaign and a lifelong champion of equal rights, notably as chairman of the N.A.A.C.P., died on Saturday night in Fort Walton Beach, Fla. He was 75. The Southern Poverty Law Center announced Mr. Bond’s death on Sunday. His wife, Pamela Sue Horowitz, said the cause was complications of vascular disease. Mr. Bond was one of the original leaders of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee while he was a student at Morehouse College in Atlanta. He was the committee’s communications director for five years and deftly guided the national news media toward stories of violence and discrimination as the committee challenged legal segregation in the South’s public facilities. He gradually moved from the militancy of the student group to the leadership of the establishmentarian N.A.A.C.P. Along the way, Mr. Bond was a writer, poet, television commentator, lecturer and college teacher, and persistent opponent of the stubborn remnants of white supremacy.'
+ Julian Bond, Charismatic Civil Rights Leader, Dies at 75:


+ Karen Krackowski - "Big Lib's Next Great White Hope":
+ Lt. Col. K.K. Krackowski on the 9/11 Iraq Propaganda Campaign:
+ "A Woman Scorned: Scooter Libby's Former Sex Slave Spills the Beans":

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