In earlier posts, I’ve lamented the fact that the US is up to its neck in conspiracy theories that may actually be factual. And I mostly believe that we’ll never get to the bottom of these as long as we have a status quo in a functioning government. That, like the dissolution of the German Democratic Republic (AKA East Germany) in the 90’s, we won’t find out the truth about many things unless somebody doesn’t take care of the Stasi’s (or in our case, the NSA’s) Burn Bags. That said, things may be unraveling for the security state that is the US of A. Three separate stories here.
First, there’s Hillary’s ‘damn emails’, now investigated by the GOP (whose investigations were derided by Bernie Sanders in the debate last week). If you haven’t been following this, Hillary was keeping her email correspondence on a server stored in “a renovated bathroom in a server farm in Colorado“. Edward Snowden was pilloried by Hillary in the debate as a wrongdoer (Hillary claimed (incorrectly) that Snowden could have gotten whistleblower status protection–an assertion promptly shot down by Politifact). It must therefore be doubly rewarding for Snowden to weigh in on Hillary’s scandal. And assertions by Bernie notwithstanding, Hillary’s email scandal is a big deal. This article, by an admitted Sanders Supporter, lays out the case that the email scandal won’t go away when/if Hillary wins the nomination. There’s a more objective article here with an important Snowden quote about Clintons’ offices’ mishandling of highly classified information:
…if a typical employee at the State Department or the Central Intelligence Agency “were sending details about the security of embassies which is alleged to be in her email, meetings with private government officials, foreign government officials and the statements that were made to them in confidence over unclassified email systems, they would not only lose their jobs and lose their clearance, they would very likely face prosecution for it.”
“When the unclassified systems of the United States government, which has a full-time information security staff, regularly gets hacked, the idea that someone keeping a private server in the renovated bathroom of a server farm in Colorado, is more secure is completely ridiculous”
Don’t hold back, Ed!
But the can of worms about Hillary’s email has now been opened. And the GOP must be kicking itself for opening it. There is a treasure trove of documents that have been unclassified, and one of them is causing a major dust-up in the UK. In the email was a 2002 message from Colin Powell to the WH that British PM Tony Blair was onboard for a war in Iraq a year before hostilities commenced. That’s wildly at issue with Blair’s constant statements that he was pursuing a diplomatic resolution. The British Government has been pursuing Blair over questions about whether he manipulated the intelligence in order to lie Britain into supporting the invasion.
Former Tory Shadow Home Secretary David Davis said: ‘The memos prove in explicit terms what many of us have believed all along: Tony Blair effectively agreed to act as a frontman for American foreign policy in advance of any decision by the House of Commons or the British Cabinet.
‘He was happy to launder George Bush’s policy on Iraq and sub-contract British foreign policy to another country without having the remotest ability to have any real influence over it. And in return for what?
‘For George Bush pretending Blair was a player on the world stage to impress voters in the UK when the Americans didn’t even believe it themselves’.
…A second explosive memo from the same cache also reveals how Bush used ‘spies’ in the Labour Party to help him to manipulate British public opinion in favour of the war.
But a number of other memos (not released) are damaging for the US as well. Apparently they lay out the evidence that George W Bush was lying about everything he stated in the run-up to the invasion–about the Iraq connection to 9/11, about the WMD’s, and a host of other issues. I’m not sure the evidence rises to DustBin News’ assertions that the memos prove that W committed treason, but the timing of this couldn’t be much worse for the GOP. The continuing violence in Iraq and the spread of ISIS from the shattered neighborhoods of Baghdad to the conflict in Syria are reminding everyone of voting age that whatever’s going on in Iraq right now got started in March of 2003. And we are finding that Colin Powell’s Pottery Barn principle will be a costly and never-ending disaster–we broke much of the Persian Gulf region and now we own the problems for the indefinite future. Iraq will come up again and again in coming debates on both sides, and the GOP would rather it didn’t.
Speaking of unintended consequences and conspiracy theories, there are stories circling around the tinfoil hat part of the Internet that Putin has satellite information indicating the 9/11 was an inside job and has threatened to release it. The headlines come from Pravda, which used to be the house newspaper for the USSR, and they source it to a conspiracy website that is (charitably) not reliable. But that’s an interesting question–what do other governments know about our internal conspiracies? I remember back in the 70’s when Robert Ludlum was being interviewed about his research into conspiracies, and he said something that I’ve remembered ever since. The Israeli MOSSAD has a training module about conspiracies and in the course of their training they present the JFK assassination as a full-out conspiracy–and the Warren Commission report as a coverup. I wonder what the Mossad teaches about 9/11. In the meantime, the GOP has (through their pursuit of Clinton at any cost) given us some really interesting insights into our government.