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© Copyright 2004, From The Wilderness Publications, All Rights Reserved. May be reprinted, distributed or posted on an Internet web site for non-profit purposes only.


Conspiracy and the State of the Union

Jamey Hecht, PhD

Peter Dale Scott: "If a nation decides to live by lies, it has chosen a course of intellectual stagnation, and ultimately of political decay."
          The Assassinations, 1975 (ix).

John Newman: Let me introduce myself. I'm a conspiracy theorist.
          JFK Lancer's 'November In Dallas' conference presentation, 1999

John Judge: Call me a conspiracy theorist if you like, so long as you call yourself a coincidence theorist.
          Coalition On Political Assassinations (COPA) presentation, 2002

Philip Berg: Conspiracy is among the most common legal categories of crime - conspiracy to commit murder; conspiracy to commit fraud, conspiracy to provide material support to a terrorist act, and on and on.
          International Citizen's Inquiry Into 9-11, Phase One:
          San Francisco presentation, 2004

Greg Palast: People tell me they don't believe in conspiracy; I tell them, look - I have the minutes of the meetings! What more do you want?
          Interview, in Election 2000 documentary "Unprecedented"

Kevin Costner's character "Crash Davis" in the film Bull Durham: "I believe Lee Harvey Oswald acted alone; I believe there ought to be a constitutional amendment outlawing Astroturf and the designated hitter…"

E. Martin Schotz: "One of the primary means of immobilizing the American people politically today is to hold them in a state of confusion in which anything can be believed and nothing can be known… nothing of significance, that is."
          History Will Not Absolve Us: Orwellian Control, Public Denial,
          and the Murder of President Kennedy

Michael C. Ruppert: I am not a conspiracy theorist. I deal in conspiracy fact.
          From The Wilderness

To Love the Old Republic Is Patriotism; To Love the Empire Is Nationalism

The United States is extraordinary. The idealism of our founding documents proceeded straight from the 18th Century's Enlightenment principles of the universal rights of human beings. Though the Indian genocide, the genocidal African slave trade, and the lack of women's suffrage tore gaping holes in the American application of these principles, our Constitution remained among the world's best hopes for the achievement of equality, opportunity, and civic peace. The French Revolution emulated our own; the 1994 post-apartheid Constitution of South Africa - one of the most beautiful documents of hope ever conceived - was modeled on these same American documents, and as the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. pointed out, national liberation movements the world over (including post-French Vietnam in 1945) have taken our Declaration of Independence as the template of their own Declarations. Rather than list each of the remarkable advances our democracy has made - from the Bill of Rights to the Progressive legislation of the Roosevelt, Taft, and Wilson administrations, to Robert Kennedy's Civil Rights Act of 1964 - let me point out that each significant improvement was driven by popular participation in civic life: in a word, democracy.

Dissidents are patriotic speakers and writers - in the best cases, anti-nationalists - whose arguments have not yet won the day. If ever the merits of their cases are established and their ideals legitimated, others come to recognize the urgent benevolence that motivated their dissent, and their faces appear on postage stamps with those of Thom Paine, Crazy Horse, and Paul Robeson. Later on down the road, I'm looking for M. King Hubbert on the twenty-dollar gold piece.

A critic is an interpreter who uses his or her mind and heart to clarify a situation or a text for the effective benefit of the larger public. Political criticism is a vexed but noble attempt to think past the limits of official opinion and earnestly diagnose the legitimacy of our political institutions and their occupants. Critics of the national security state are marginalized as dreamers, sometimes brilliant in their efforts at information gathering and critique, but generally unable to dramatically change the brutal order of realpolitik they denounce. The public they address is often indifferent, powerless, and thoroughly distracted from issues of the greatest possible relevance to their own well-being.

Daily I remind myself of the words of the 19th century poet Holderlin: "Where the danger grows, there also grows the power of salvation." Atheist that I am, I hear those words in a thoroughly political spirit, one that isn't at all alien to that poet's historical moment: the Romantic movement - a living current of European thought that briefly flooded into the public mind with a sublime message of human value, borne along by a new stream of inspired art, music, poetry, and political essays. When I read an astute dismissal of the worst of contemporary popular culture (such as the one found in Dale Allen Pfeiffer's excellent "Call For Action," FTW 06-15-04), I think of powerful alternatives past and present: the poetry and prose of Percy Bysshe Shelley, John Keats, and Walt Whitman; the Hip-Hop of Dope Poets Society, Clarity, and KRS-1; the films of Shadow Government Television, Guerilla News Network, and Snowshoe Films. Let me pause to show you why I get so worked up about this. Here's a granite chunk of verse (lines 168 - 202) from Shelley's longpoem "Queen Mab."

War is the statesman's game, the priest's delight,
The lawyer's jest, the hired assassin's trade,
And to those royal murderers whose mean thrones
Are bought by crimes of treachery and gore,
The bread they eat, the staff on which they lean.
Guards, garbed in blood-red livery, surround
Their palaces, participate the crimes
That force defends and from a nation's rage
Secures the crown, which all the curses reach
That famine, frenzy, woe and penury breathe.
These are the hired bravos who defend
The tyrant's throne--the bullies of his fear;
These are the sinks and channels of worst vice,
The refuse of society, the dregs
Of all that is most vile; their cold hearts blend
Deceit with sternness, ignorance with pride,
All that is mean and villainous with rage
Which hopelessness of good and self-contempt
Alone might kindle; they are decked in wealth,
Honor and power, then are sent abroad
To do their work. The pestilence that stalks
In gloomy triumph through some eastern land
Is less destroying. They cajole with gold
And promises of fame the thoughtless youth
Already crushed with servitude; he knows
His wretchedness too late, and cherishes
Repentance for his ruin, when his doom
Is sealed in gold and blood!
Those too the tyrant serve, who, skilled to snare
The feet of justice in the toils of law,
Stand ready to oppress the weaker still,
And right or wrong will vindicate for gold,
Sneering at public virtue, which beneath
Their pitiless tread lies torn and trampled where
Honor sits smiling at the sale of truth.

Now there are new collective entities - comprising individual motivated men and women who can think for themselves, but who share crucial information; who are through with the circular commentary of the gatekeeping left, plaintively chanted in the pages of The Nation month after month; who don't need or want the doctrinaire rigidity of the Trotskyist International, nor the totally spontaneous and structureless episodic style of the anarchist movement. Of my involvement with FTW, therefore, I am more proud than I can say. I consider it foremost among the new, knowledge-driven vehicles of results-oriented activism.

Yet the forces of violence, reaction, and American exceptionalism can claim a long series of epochal triumphs, of which I will name only the most egregious: Operation Paperclip, which brought the Nazi Intelligence "community" into the nascent CIA (thereby rescuing the most depraved murderers in history from certain death at the hands of British military tribunals); the National Security Act of 1947, which established the CIA as a secret society of military adventurism and political sabotage under the guise of an intelligence-gathering body; the murders of President Kennedy, Senator Robert Kennedy, the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr, which issued in a disastrous Vietnam War that killed up to three million people and pitched the U.S. economy into a permanent free-fall of debt; the Savings and Loan Robbery, which did so much to bankrupt the vanishing middle class; the 1990's three trillion dollar theft under the auspices of the departments of Defense and Housing and Urban Development (HUD), which motivated America's international creditors to begin withdrawing their confidence from the dollar; and the "velvet coup" of the fraudulent presidential election of 2000, which openly discredited the residual myth of popular sovereignty. But perhaps 11-22-63 and 9-11-01 are the deepest wounds they have inflicted upon the body politic so far. These represent two seizures of state power by the most violent elements of the longstanding elites who make policy in the absence of popular sovereignty and genuine legislative oversight. In the meantime, they have consolidated their power and expanded their domain of operations and propaganda with an inexorable momentum.

Policy is no longer driven by leadership figures, but by consortia of mutually interested elites. Like the forty years since 11-22, the three years since 9-11 have seen exponential growth in defense spending as a portion of the USG's annual budget. Between forty-six and fifty-three cents of every tax dollar we pay goes to military debt payments, salaries, deployments, and weapons stockpiling. This flood of capital into the arms industry drives a domestic policy of despair and a "foreign" policy of violence. Weapons are expended so that they can be replaced; their manufacture enriches Lockheed-Martin, the largest purveyor of lethal weapons in the world, and its competitive partners. In pursuit of new raw materials to seize and new markets to monopolize, corporations and their clients drive policy toward aggressive expansionism. CIA is the spearhead of the war process, so its activity has been cloaked from all genuine Congressional interference. The beauty of the CIA's position is that it apparently always takes its orders from the President, but for the most part it also insures that the President orders roughly what CIA wants. When he doesn't do so, and seeks to replace their programs with his own initiative, he is murdered; when he insists on forming his own intelligence apparatus inside the White House or the Pentagon - as in the Nixon and G. W. Bush administrations, respectively - the CIA is likely to destroy the administration. Whenever the latter occurs, the administration is unseated on the strength of some nonviolent crime like a "third rate burglary" or the disclosure of a CIA operative's identity. Bombing Vietnam and Cambodia or Afghanistan and Iraq at the cost of thousands of lives never ranks as an impeachable offense.

Only a handful of Senators have endured the overwhelming personal and political risk of applying even a kernel of real power to the disciplining of the Intelligence "community": Senators Frank Church, Gary Hart, Richard Schweiker, Richard Shelby, Charles Grassley, and Rep. James Trafficant are among this small number; in wishful moments, I'm tempted to list John Kerry there.

Since the Vietnam War, the diplomatic arm of the U.S. government has withered into a propagandistic rubber-stamp instrument. Whereas the Department of State was once so powerful that its Secretary shaped foreign policy by reporting viable options to the Chief Executive, today the Department has been reduced to visa functions, information gathering, and statute enforcement. But as we've seen (and as former U.S. Consulate and Foreign Service official Mike Springman has made bitterly clear from personal experience), CIA regularly overrides the visa authority of State (often with murderous results), and intelligence agents of all sorts violate the Arms Export Control Act at with an institutionalized impunity. To view the heartbreaking laxity of this law, see the page on the website of the State Department which explains its mandate.

One more bitter irony is the CIA's use of the State Department as a hidden channel for its covert programs; more broadly, State is a tool for the implementation of policies driven by the lobbies from oil, arms, drugs, and construction. If it were really a public (and not a private) institution, the diplomatic arm of a democratic government, it would advance diplomacy-based solutions to international crises . Instead, private firms (e.g., Kellog, Brown and Root; DynCorp; Halliburton; Bell; Bechtel; Boeing; etc.) and their proxies in the NSA and NSC (e.g. Oliver North, Elliot Abrams, John Poindexter, etc) and CIA (e.g. Ray Cline, Laili Helms, etc.) wield it as one special sword-and-shield in their vast tactical arsenal. Colin Powel, the current Secretary, is a military man whose rise to power began with his cover-up of the Mi Lai massacre. Where the public perception of Powell's role in the months leading up to Gulf War II was that of a moderate who pushed for diplomacy, at the crucial moment Powell neither strategized for such a policy, nor resigned in protest: he became the very spokesperson of the martial policy he had formerly seemed to oppose. In doing so by means of false documents, it's been suggested that Powell made the State Department look both servile and conniving. And he certainly committed a repetition of the "moral suicide" that started his political career.

So much for diplomacy. As for an informed electorate, all major American newspapers and television networks are owned by defense corporations like G.E. The Permanent Warfare State has absorbed the media into its own project, neutralizing mainstream American journalism. Even the largest and oldest Leftist journal, The Nation, utterly fails the 9-11 test that any reliable news outlet must pass. In this case, as in that of 11-22, journalistic integrity can be measured by the frequency with which the phrase "intelligence failures" appears in its pages. As I've written elsewhere, crime and failure are not the same thing.

Elsewhere on the Left, Noam Chomsky and Alexander Cockburn seem to me quite wrong about 11-22 and its significance, though they are otherwise important critics of the long history of imperial American violence and political sabotage. Yet both writers argue that leadership figures count so much less than the elites they represent, that it doesn't much matter who is in office. This kind of thinking prizes independence more than insight; since others quarrel over who bears primary responsibility for the JFK murder, one can easily find a fresh position by simply declaring that the assassination itself is a red herring, the wrong place to look for an understanding of politico-economic reality. A single hearing of the American University Speech, a single reading of NSAM-263, ought to persuade anyone so circumspect as Noam Chomsky that unique officeholders do emerge, at least once or twice per century. But it doesn't.

Because of their genius and the painful but powerful psychic integrity of their inner lives, the brothers Kennedy were gradually transformed from opportunistic anti-communists into prophets of peace, justice, and diplomacy. Having read NSAMs 263 and 273, having heard the recordings of the American University speech and Robert Kennedy's speech at Cape Town, and having seen the Zapruder film one thousand times, one can appreciate what was at stake in the period of heightened political struggle that began in January 1961 and ended in June 1968. Whereas Rush To Judgment was the best-selling book in America throughout 1966, most of today's journalistic readership considers the passage of the JFK Records Act a proof that there is nothing significant in the files, so that reading about them would be a waste of effort. Paradoxically and yet predictably, the passage of the JFK Records Act marks the beginning of the period in which 11-22-63 no longer matters much in the official political order. Even if by some miracle LBJ, Hoover, Ed Lansdale and Alan Dulles were posthumously tried and found heinously guilty, nothing would change in the affairs of the current regime. The Carter Administration marks the end of presidential politics for the victors of 1964 and their hangers on. Current and future administrations do not share with Johnson, Nixon, and Ford the personal terror of being found out regarding "The Whole Bay of Pigs thing."

Disputes among critics are harmless compared to the government's assault on the public mind. Given what we now know about the national and global consequences of this assassination, our trouble in 2004 has grown more or less directly out of 11-22-63. And in response to the pressures of recession, the Patriot Act, endless war, and the events of 9-11-01 - in other words, in response to the dawning reality of Peak Oil - the Political Justice movement is indeed growing, and many of those drawn to it find themselves led on as if by a specter to the 9-11 and / or the Kennedy Assassinations. Whether their initial interest is in heroin traffic, CIA black ops, police malfeasance, Constitutional history, the Federal Reserve, US-Latin American economic partnership, or any other aspect of the modern world, sooner or later the myriad implications of these events become relevant, and on looking at the evidence, another critic is born.

Wrong In All Directions: The Term "Conspiracy Theory"

This phrase is among the tireless workhorses of establishment discourse. Without it, disinformation would be much harder than it is. "Conspiracy theory" is a trigger phrase, saturated with intellectual contempt and deeply anti-intellectual resentment. It makes little sense on its own, and while it's a priceless tool of propaganda, it is worse than useless as an explanatory category.

"Theory" is a term from Plato, derived from the Ancient Greek theorein, "to see." From it we get the word "theater." Theory is a conceptual overview of the way something works. In science, the word refers to a guiding set of concepts derived from testable hypotheses about a domain of facts in nature or procedures in an art.

When the evidence is gathered together, some observer sees it in such a way that it configures an hypothesis.

When that hypothesis is verified by induction and experiment, it can be gathered together with similar hypotheses from analogous cases.

If we say, 9-11 was orchestrated by the bin Laden organization, the Pakistani intelligence agency, and elements of the neoconservative group that seized power in 2000, that's an hypothesis, derived logically from a set of documented facts that constitute evidence. It isn't a theory. It can become part of a theory if it's joined with other hypotheses into a coherent descriptive pattern that can help to predict future events in general terms.

For instance, the amply demonstrated hypothesis that the 35th President of the United States was murdered by a consortium of interests including the CIA, Cuban exiles, organized crime, and the military. 11-22 and 9-11 are examples of premeditated murder by more than one person - in law, they are cases of conspiracy to commit murder (and fraud, and perjury, and treason). Taken together, they imply a theory whose greatest expression is the work of Peter Dale Scott, who coined the term deep politics: "the constant, everyday interaction between the constitutionally elected government and forces of violence, forces of crime, which appear to be the enemies of that government." Deep politics is a robust theory, a powerful explanatory account of demonstrable phenomena; it applies to myriad cases and offers a unified understanding of their causes and meanings. Like Goethe's conceptual account of color, and like Newton's rival account which refuted it, Scott's deep-political theory applies uniformly to the domain it describes.

Conspiracy, on the other hand, is a hypothesis about a particular case at hand. The only rigorous meaning that the phrase "conspiracy theory" can have would be that political crimes involving more than one actor are usually exceptional episodes unrelated to one another - rather than the ongoing, systemic and unacknowledged relationships between authorities and the criminals they are paid to hinder and to punish.

The appeal of the phrase "conspiracy theory" lies in the slang meaning of "theory": unproven and even unprovable claims about the way things get done in government and business. But there are two problems here.

First, a theory is still rightly called a theory long after it has been proven, even to the limits of human understanding. Einstein's theory of Relativity and Darwin's theory of evolution are incomplete, like every product of human thought. But they are as certain as any grounds we can give for them, as certain as the palpable facts on which they rest. The public imagines that this word "theory" implies confusion and controversy. It doesn't.

The second problem is this: in order for a theory to be worthy of that name, it must be falsifiable. This is a term invented by Karl Popper; it means that your description of events has to be demonstrably true based on valid experiments - or genuine evidence - that might otherwise have proven it demonstrably false. Like the hypotheses that form its bones and flesh, a theory must turn out to be either true or false, or it's not a theory. For instance, consider the beautiful claim that the world is governed by a God who rules by reward and punishment. Nothing observable counts as evidence for or against the claim. If I say "show me a sign," an immediate lightning bolt on my head is not evidence of a God any more than the absence of a sign is evidence against it. Nothing can count as a test, so theism is not a theory; it can be something too wonderful to describe, but - true, false, or paradoxical - it isn't theoretical. Relativity, however, is a theory of the natural world, verified by experiments like Michaelson-Morley which demonstrated its conformity to observable facts - and had the experiments turned out differently, the theory would have been falsified. The public thinks falsifiability means that the theory can already be disproved and is therefore wrong. It actually means that the theory is either right or wrong, but not meaningless.

  • In a criminal conspiracy, Arthur Anderson and Enron defrauded investors and employees of billions of dollars. But they also compromised the S.E.C., the Congress, the executive branch, and the duck-hunting judicial branch in order to make part of this activity technically legal. That's deep politics.
  • In a criminal conspiracy, a core group of Secret Service personnel (Roberts, Greer, Boring, etc.) conspired with elements of the CIA (Phillips, Angleton, Dulles, etc.) to murder the 35th President of the United States. But they also collaborated with organized crime figures (Trafficante, Giancana, Marcello, etc.), paramilitary groups, and international heroin traffickers. That's deep politics.

Because so much of America's real business gets done at a politically deep level, any discussion of it tends to be part of a psychological tug-of-war. The person who brings the undesirable story to the public is "peddling" a conspiracy theory; if the story should happen to be any more complex than "lone gunman does really bad thing for no apparent reason," then it's a "grab-bag" or a "hodgepodge" of such "theories." In response, the critic is forced to point out that all this hysteria is the byproduct of dangerous levels of denial in the public and in the media.

But I'd like to make a different gesture for a moment, the kind that was often made in response to President Nixon's criminal behavior (and is being made today by authors like Mark Crispin Miller and Robert Jay Lifton). Dumbfounded at the sight of his murderous and self-defeating hypocrisy, many critics approached Nixon as a walking museum of mental ailments. While G.W.B. has none of Richard Nixon's intellectual resources, his conduct is so irrational that it cries out for analysis in Freudian terms. As the instrument of elites he can't understand, Bush needs to convince himself that the decisions he pronounces are in fact his own. He is the kind of figurehead who really believes that he is steering the ship. Unlike his homicidally clever father, this man has no real-life achievement on which to base an identity of his own. Having never won a fair fight in his life (to borrow a phrase from John Judge), terribly uncomfortable with the failed self he had on his hands "when I was a drinkin' man," Bush became "born again." That's always a radical move to make, and at its best it quiets down a person's inner noise so he or she can hear the wisdom of some sacred text or other. But Bush is not listening, and I suspect his transformation was actually a fool's golden ticket to un-earned self-esteem: in other words, deficit spending.

The Freudian Unconscious of the Tyrant

"We must speak the truth about terror. Let us never tolerate outrageous conspiracy theories concerning the attacks of September the 11th, malicious lies that attempt to shift the blame away from the terrorists themselves, away from the guilty."
     -George W Bush speaking before the UN General Assembly 11/10/2001

When somebody does something really terrible, he tries to attribute it to somebody else. Sometimes this gets out of hand, and he unconsciously betrays himself. This applies to intolerable feelings just as it applies to the criminal guilt that generates them. Here are some definitions (quoted from the DSM-IV) and examples of what psychologists mean by "defense mechanisms":

Projective Identification

The individual deals with emotional conflict or internal or external stressors by falsely attributing to another his or her own unacceptable feelings, impulses, or thoughts. Unlike simple projection, the individual does not fully disavow what is projected. Instead, the individual remains aware of his or her own affects or impulses but mis-attributes them as justifiable reactions to the other person. Not infrequently, the individual induces the very feelings in others that were first mistakenly believed to be there, making it difficult to clarify who did what to whom first.

If this were a dictatorship, it'd be a heck of a lot easier... just as long as I'm the dictator...
     -G.W.B. in Washington, Dec.18, 2000, during first trip to DC as President-Elect

The nature of the terrorists is evidenced once again - we see their utter contempt for innocent life. They hate freedom, they hate free nations.
     -G.W.B., at joint news conference with Tony Blair, Thursday, 20 November, 2003


The individual deals with emotional conflict or internal or external stressors by feeling or acting as if he or she possesses special powers or abilities and is superior to others.

'Of course not,' he said. "I'm the commander. See, I don't have to explain why I say things. That's the interesting thing about being the president. Maybe somebody needs to explain to me why they say something, but I don't feel like I owe anybody an explanation.
     -G.W.B., when asked Bob Woodward whether he talked with staff and advisers about what he was doing.


The individual deals with emotional conflict or stressors by compartmentalizing opposite emotional states, and by failing to integrate the positive and negative qualities of the self or others into cohesive images. Images of the self - and of other persons and institutions - tend to alternate between polar opposites: exclusively loving, powerful, worthy, nurturing, and kind, or exclusively bad, hateful, angry, destructive, rejecting, or worthless. Splitting may compromise an adult's ability to function well in many ways. In order to maintain a view of oneself or one's world that is either completely 'all good' or 'all bad', aspects of reality must be denied. Splitting acts as a set of blinders that keep all contradicting evidence out of sight.

Our responsibility to history is already clear: to answer these attacks and rid the world of evil.
     -G.W.B at the pulpit of Washington National Cathedral, Sept. 15, 2001


Projection is attributing your own unacceptable impulses to someone else. The impulses are still judged unacceptable but they belong to someone else, not you. This defense mechanism is commonly over utilized by the paranoid.

The dictator who is assembling the world's most dangerous weapons has already used them on whole villages -- leaving thousands of his own citizens dead, blind, or disfigured.
     - G.W.B. State of the Union Address, Jan 29, 2003

DU munitions are classified by a United Nations resolution as illegal weapons of mass destruction. Their use breaches all international laws, treaties and conventions forbidding poisoned weapons calculated to cause unnecessary suffering.
     - Amy Worthington, Triangle Free Press, July 11, 2003

One source of [WMDs] is dangerous and secretive regimes that build weapons of mass destruction to intimidate their neighbors and force their influence upon the world… The former dictator of Iraq possessed and used weapons of mass destruction against his own people. For 12 years, he defied the will of the international community. He refused to disarm or account for his illegal weapons and programs.
     - G.W.B., Remarks by the President on Weapons of Mass      Destruction  Proliferation, Fort Lesley J. McNair - National Defense      University, Washington, D.C.

As many as 400,000 U.S. troops entered into and some lived as long as two months inside areas heavily contaminated by more than 640,000 pounds (300,000,000 grams) of very fine, yet highly toxic, DU dust particles.
     - National Gulf War Resource Center, August 27, 1999

Dr. Asaf Durakovic explains that the initial symptoms will be mostly neurological, showing up as headaches, weakness, dizziness and muscle fatigue. The long-term effects are cancers and other radiation-related illnesses, such as chronic fatigue syndrome, joint and muscle pain, rashes, neurological and/or nerve damage, mood disturbances, infections, lung and kidney damage, vision problems, auto-immune deficiencies and severe skin conditions. It also causes increases in miscarriages, maternal mortality and genetic birth defects.
- Sara Flounders, "Another US war crime? Iraqi cities 'hot' with depleted uranium", 18 August 2003

The Pentagon and the United Nations estimate that the U.S. and Britain used 1,100 to 2,200 tons of armor-piercing shells made of depleted uranium during attacks on Iraq in March and April--far more than the 375 tons used in the 1991 Gulf War… By now, half of all the 697,000 U.S. soldiers involved in the 1991 war have reported serious illnesses. According to the American Gulf War Veterans Association, more than 30 percent of these soldiers are chronically ill and are receiving disability benefits from the Veterans Administration. Such a high occurrence of various symptoms has led to the illnesses being named Gulf War Syndrome.

Let me close with a passage from what I consider the best book on the subject, Peter Dale Scott's Deep Politics:

Bureaucratic struggles, even when not officially acknowledged, could be discussed in mainstream journals like the New York Review of Books. My articles which focused on underlying economic motives for U.S. intervention were denied such outlets, but could still be published in journals like The Nation, or what I have come to think of as the establishment left. But even The Nation is fiercely hostile to the notion that criminal interventions… can themselves be part of the system or process by which we are governed. (Scott, 10)

Appendix: Conspiracy Statute

Office of the Circuit Executive

Ninth Circuit Model Criminal Jury Instructions

A conspiracy may continue for a long period of time and may include the performance of many transactions. It is not necessary that all members of the conspiracy join it at the same time, and one may become a member of a conspiracy without full knowledge of all the details of the unlawful scheme or the names, identities, or locations of all of the other members.

Even though a defendant did not directly conspire with [the other defendant] [or] [other conspirators] in the overall scheme, the defendant has, in effect, agreed to participate in the conspiracy if it is proved beyond a reasonable doubt that:

(1) the defendant directly conspired with one or more conspirators to carry out at least one of the objects of the conspiracy,

(2) the defendant knew or had reason to know that other conspirators were involved with those with whom the defendant directly conspired, and

(3) the defendant had reason to believe that whatever benefits the defendant might get from the conspiracy were probably dependent upon the success of the entire venture.

It is no defense that a person's participation in a conspiracy was minor or for a short period of time.

A person may be a member of a conspiracy even though the person does not know all of the purposes of or participants in the conspiracy. United States v. Escalante, 637 F.2d 1197, 1200 (9th Cir.), cert. denied, 449 U.S. 856 (1980); United States v. Kearney, 560 F.2d 1358, 1362 (9th Cir.), cert. denied, 434 U.S. 971 (1977).

A single conspiracy can be established even though it took place during a long period of time during which new members joined and old members dropped out. United States v. Green, 523 F.2d 229, 233 (2d Cir.1975), cert. denied, 423 U.S. 1074 (1976). See also United States v. Thomas, 586 F.2d 123, 132 (9th Cir.1978) (holding that proof that the defendant "knew he was plotting in concert with others to violate the law was sufficient to raise the necessary inference that he joined in the overall agreement"); United States v. Perry, 550 F.2d 524, 528 (9th Cir.) (holding that the law of conspiracy does not require the government "to prove that all of the defendants met together at the same time and ratified the illegal scheme"), cert. denied, 431 U.S. 918, 434 U.S. 827 (1977).


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Truth And Lies About 9-11