23 July 2003
Isn’t it amazing. All this time, since the ‘sexed up’ story first appeared, Gilligan, we were told, was the sole source of the story, hence his ‘unreliability’. Then, yesterday, the press carried reports about at least thee other UK journalists who had also been contacted by Dr Kelly and now, it seems there’s even a tape of Gilligan’s meeting with Kelly. The meek and mild-mannered Dr Kelly seems to have gotten around quite a lot for a man reportedly trying to keep a low profile.
One has to ask the question that since the journalists who were contacted by Kelly broadcast their stories as well, why weren’t the multiple stories connected? Kelly, it seems, was a real blabbermouth which just adds to my conviction (as yet unproven) that he was indeed a ‘plant’ and when one thinks about it, what better choice than a man with such excellent ‘credentials’ for the job, aside that is, from being one of the bigwigs at Porton Down CBW factory for around ten years. As we all know, it was only a question of time before his name got out but the government decided to toss him to the Commons Select Committee first. Was this because they knew his name would be revealed? Or did they decide to ‘sacrifice’ him? Could they have known that he would commit suicide? Surely there had to be have been signs? What is going on here?
It may be my paranoia; accumulated over the years since the assassination of JFK, Watergate, October Surprise/Iran-Contra et al, but I smell a rat. I suppose what first triggered my suspicion were all the reports in the press about what a ‘nice guy’ he was, and minister of defence Hoon as well as Jack Straw’s vehement denials that Kelly was in any way connected to the intelligence services (‘methinks the lady doth protest too much’). A denial, which given Kelly’s background just doesn’t ring true. And indeed, the government have made much of the fact that at some point, the BBC referred to Kelly’s association with intelligence, which the government jumped on immediately as one of the reasons why the BBC story was suspect, as the Kelly affair unraveled in such an unseemly manner.
However, it has to be assumed that the entire affair is any case, a diversion from the invasion and of course, in part, the government has used the ‘revelations’ to confuse the issue. But of course, whether it functions as a diversion or not, depends entirely on the way the press covers it and critically, the rationale behind the government’s propaganda.
Blair spells it out
There are two issues here, which I think, are of importance. Firstly, Blair went to war knowing full well that at least 75% of the population were opposed to it and second, that in spite of what appeared to be a well oiled propaganda campaign, at almost every step of the way, it’s gone badly wrong for Blah, not only because of the way the government have handled it but because of course, it’s gone badly wrong in Iraq.
There’s also the timing of Blah’s speech to Congress to consider, which disappeared in the whelter of the Kelly’s death, yet as I’ve said before, the speech spelt out for the first time, Blah’s total commitment to the ‘American Century’. Okay, it was for an American audience but this in no way alters the essential elements of the Blah ideology:
- Going it alone, whether or not the rest of the world comes along for the ‘ride’;
- The idea, first proposed by Babbitt, that the Anglo-Saxon empire has the ‘right’ to invade wherever it decides its interests are threatened, and they want it encoded into law (Blah’s recent but rebuffed attempt to get the EU to adopt the idea);
- The notion that the alliance won’t tolerate any competitors;
- The re-invention of the imperialist empire now that there’s no viable opposition
The ‘new ‘ imperialism — the Bush/Blair ideology
I must refer back to the strategic writings of a certain Robert Cooper, a high official in the Foreign Office who proposed the notion of the ‘new imperialism’ and who is one of Blah’s ideological ‘mentors’ and the UK equivilent of Robert Kagan, one of the so-called neo-con ideologues in the Bush inner sanctum:
“The challenge to the post-modern world is to get used to the idea of double standards. Among ourselves, we operate on the basis of laws and open cooperative security. But when dealing with more old-fashioned kinds of states outside the post-modern continent of Europe, we need to revert to the rougher methods of an earlier era – force, pre-emptive attack, deception, whatever is necessary to deal with those who still live in the nineteenth century world of every state for itself. Among ourselves, we keep the law but when we are operating in the jungle, we must also use the laws of the jungle…. What is needed then is a new kind of imperialism, one acceptable to a world of human rights and cosmopolitan values. We can already discern its outline: an imperialism which, like all imperialism, aims to bring order and organisation but which rests today on the voluntary principle.”
But is this something the British ruling elite goes along with? The ruling political class is clearly divided over the issue and the press coverage of Blah’s speech is indicative of this. Much will depend on how the situation in Iraq develops and the increasing call for the UN (ie the rest of the world) to start paying for the mess is one sign of the growing desperation on the part of Bush/Blah, that they’re in a real bind. This is not a situation that is going to simply ‘disappear’ as it did in Afghanistan (for the time being anyway).
And this is where the situation gets doubly dangerous as it puts increasing pressure on the Empire to create yet another rationale for extending the imperial domain, not only because once it’s embarked on the journey, it’s awfully difficult to turn back, but also because as time passes and there’s no change to the chaos unleashed on Iraq, it will need yet another rationale to justify the continuation of its strategy. Yet even this is fraught with problems. Blah’s government and indeed the British economy is not in a position to wage wars on several fronts, in spite of the increasing level of propaganda emanating from Downing Street about North Korea (and note that the UK government has stated quite clearly, that it is opposed to any military adventure in Iran, at least for the time being).
The other major issue is Palestine. That Blah made such a ‘big deal’ of it in his speech to Congress masks an essential problem that no amount of talk such as:
“[We] know there are states in the Middle East now actively funding and helping people who regard it as God’s will, in the act of suicide, to take as many innocent lives with them on their way to God’s judgement”
will alter the fact that the ‘road map’ is a non-starter, must surely have penetrated Blah’s consciousness. Or does his own over-inflated opinion of himself, verging on megalomania, make him totally blind to the reality of the situation?
There is no way that the Palestinian people will agree to tiny Apartheid-style Bantustans surrounded by extremist settler colonies and a massive Berlin Wall. If it’s escaped the western press that running a wall through a Palestinian community so that a single family finds itself cut in half, it surely hasn’t escaped the notice of the Palestinian people. How can, given the current dismemberment of what is left of the occupied territories resemble a state in waiting?
A single state solution?
Unfashionable as it may seem, the only solution to the nightmare that is the situation of the Palestinian people, is a single state that encompasses both Palestinian and Israeli as equals. And here the US cannot offer a solution without parting company with its own band of rabid ideologues. It’s caught in a trap of its own making. A legacy from the Cold War that is now a thorn in the side of the Bush administration and even more so for the Blah government, caught as it is between ‘old Europe’ and the ‘new American century’.
Moreover, the ‘road map’ reveals something very fundamental about the ideologues behind the ‘American Century’ namely, that blinded by their own racism and imperial ambitions, they’ve ceased to think things through. Do they really think that erasing Iraq (or Syria, or Iran) and replacing the existing governments with some form of compliant puppets would somehow produce a ‘solution’? If indeed they were to succeed in this endeavour, it would merely give a green light to Sharon and his nazi accomplices to settle the ‘Palestinian problem’ once and for all through the total extermination of the Palestinian people. And what does this remind you of I wonder?
Many rivers to cross
Will the Bush/Blah clique be able to resolve this fundamental contradiction? They know that in order to complete their ‘plan’ for the Middle East they have to produce a viable solution to the Palestinian/Israeli impasse, but without dumping the Perle, Wolfowitz, Zionist clique that also supplies the strategy for the Anglo-Saxon empire, their hands are tied. Can Bush, even if he is willing to, pursue the only realistic option open to him? Would a change of administration in 2004 make this more likely? Based on the experience of Clinton, it’s unlikely.
And Blah is of no help to him as he too is caught between the more realistic view of the Europeans and bowing to his imperial masters in Washington DC. Blah made what is probably the most disastrous move of his political career when making his speech to Congress, for surely the major European powers could not have failed to notice that he basically gave them all the finger. It would seem that Blah; in grabbing hold of Bush’s coattails has burned his European bridges. And now Blah, having made his bed in Bush’s basement, is now forced to sleep to in it. It’s going to be restless night.