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Putin's Russia - The New American Magazine - 1-22-07.pdf
Putin's Russia - The New American Magazine - 1-22-07.pdf
Putin's Russia - The New American Magazine - 1-22-07.pdf
Putin's Russia - The New American Magazine - 1-22-07.pdf
Putin's Russia - The New American Magazine - 1-22-07.pdf
Putin's Russia - The New American Magazine - 1-22-07.pdf
Putin's Russia - The New American Magazine - 1-22-07.pdf
Putin's Russia - The New American Magazine - 1-22-07.pdf
Putin's Russia - The New American Magazine - 1-22-07.pdf
Putin's Russia - The New American Magazine - 1-22-07.pdf
Putin's Russia - The New American Magazine - 1-22-07.pdf
Putin's Russia - The New American Magazine - 1-22-07.pdf
Putin's Russia - The New American Magazine - 1-22-07.pdf
Putin's Russia - The New American Magazine - 1-22-07.pdf
Putin's Russia - The New American Magazine - 1-22-07.pdf
Putin's Russia - The New American Magazine - 1-22-07.pdf
Putin's Russia - The New American Magazine - 1-22-07.pdf
Putin's Russia - The New American Magazine - 1-22-07.pdf
Putin's Russia - The New American Magazine - 1-22-07.pdf
Putin's Russia - The New American Magazine - 1-22-07.pdf
Putin's Russia - The New American Magazine - 1-22-07.pdf
Putin's Russia - The New American Magazine - 1-22-07.pdf
Putin's Russia - The New American Magazine - 1-22-07.pdf
Putin's Russia - The New American Magazine - 1-22-07.pdf
Putin's Russia - The New American Magazine - 1-22-07.pdf
Putin's Russia - The New American Magazine - 1-22-07.pdf
Putin's Russia - The New American Magazine - 1-22-07.pdf
Putin's Russia - The New American Magazine - 1-22-07.pdf
Putin's Russia - The New American Magazine - 1-22-07.pdf
Putin's Russia - The New American Magazine - 1-22-07.pdf
Putin's Russia - The New American Magazine - 1-22-07.pdf
Putin's Russia - The New American Magazine - 1-22-07.pdf
Putin's Russia - The New American Magazine - 1-22-07.pdf
Putin's Russia - The New American Magazine - 1-22-07.pdf
Putin's Russia - The New American Magazine - 1-22-07.pdf
Putin's Russia - The New American Magazine - 1-22-07.pdf
Putin's Russia - The New American Magazine - 1-22-07.pdf
Putin's Russia - The New American Magazine - 1-22-07.pdf
Putin's Russia - The New American Magazine - 1-22-07.pdf
Putin's Russia - The New American Magazine - 1-22-07.pdf
Putin's Russia - The New American Magazine - 1-22-07.pdf
Putin's Russia - The New American Magazine - 1-22-07.pdf
Putin's Russia - The New American Magazine - 1-22-07.pdf
Putin's Russia - The New American Magazine - 1-22-07.pdf
Putin's Russia - The New American Magazine - 1-22-07.pdf
Putin's Russia - The New American Magazine - 1-22-07.pdf
Putin's Russia - The New American Magazine - 1-22-07.pdf
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  • 1. Business vs. Government • Neoconservatism’s Deadly Influence • “Normalizing” Premarital Sex January 22, 2007 www.thenewamerican.com THAT FREEDOM SHALL NOT PERISH $2.95 Putin’s The Return of the Iron Fist
  • 2. Imagine what kind of impact could be felt on Capitol Hill if hundreds of congressmen and their staffs were regular readers of THE NEW AMERICAN! One step in that direction is the Congressional Sub Pool program. You can help get the magazine in front of congressmen and their staffs every two weeks with the goal of developing their understanding of the issues. This program is a coordinated effort to give THE NEW AMERICAN a prominent presence on Capitol Hill by sponsoring two-year subscriptions to the most conservative (or least liberal) representatives and senators at their D.C. offices. Our goal for the new 110th Congress, full of new freshmen who will be pressured to surrender America’s sovereignty for global government, is to increase the number of subscriptions. To help us accomplish that goal, please consider contributing to the Congressional Sub Pool. For each $68 you give, one congressman will receive a two-year subscription to THE NEW AMERICAN. Continue to send your congressmen letters and copies of TNA and then give them a double-dose of truth — by contributing to the Congressional Sub Pool! Contribute Today! THE NEW AMERICAN; P.O. Box 8040; Appleton, WI 54912 (Include a note that specifies the Congressional Sub Pool program.) (800) 727-8783 • www.thenewamerican.com/subscribe/congress/ Please note: For this “Pool” program, please do not specify a particular congressman. By contributing undesignated subscriptions you will help us avoid duplication and having to recontact you for alternate names. CPT06A
  • 3. Vol. 23, No. 2 January 22, 2007 Photo: Newscom; design by Joseph W. Kelly COVER STORY RUSSIA 12 12 Putin’s Russia by William F. Jasper — The return of the iron fist. Putin’s 17 Putin, Poison, and Murder by William F. Jasper — The recent murder-by-poison of Russian KGB/FSB defector Alexander Litvinenko is a potent warning about the dangers of our new security “partnership” with Putin’s Russia. 17 23 Putin’s New Soviet Economy by Dennis Behreandt — After a decade of “market reform,” the Russian economy appears to be returning to its Soviet roots. 28 Silent Suffering in Russia AP Images AP Images by Kurt Williamsen — As Russian companies were privatized, the 23 bulk of Russians received merely empty promises. FEATURES BOOK REVIEW 31 Business vs. Government by Brian Farmer — In his book The Big Ripoff, Timothy Carney destroys the deception that Big Business and government are adversaries. AP Images HISTORY — PAST AND PERSPECTIVE 28 36 Neoconservatism’s Deadly Influence by John F. McManus — A look at the roots of neoconservatism and 31 the reasons why this deadly movement must be rejected. THE LAST WORD 44 “Normalizing” Premarital Sex by Warren Mass DEPARTMENTS 5 Letters to the Editor 35 The Goodness of America 7 Inside Track 41 Exercising the Right AP Images 36 11 QuickQuotes 42 Correction, Please! COVER Photo: Newscom; design by Joseph W. Kelly
  • 4. Airline Motor Inn Their Names: Call toll free for reservations: North American Union (800) 635-7639 Security & Prosperity Partnership 1984 Airline Drive • P.O. Box 72549 Their Agenda: Bossier City, Louisiana 71112-2549 Combine Canada, Mexico & the United States into a “Superstate” like the European Union. What You Can Do: Find out more at JBS.org/nau! You’ll be surprised at what’s going on behind your back. bestwestairline@aol.com Phone: 318-742-6000 Visit today: JBS.org/nau Fax: 318-742-4615 www.bestwestern.com/airlinemotorinn TM CANON’S LARGEST INDEPENDENT DEALER IN NEW ENGLAND The Product Is Canon, The Difference Is NECS Over 32 years in Business TOTAL OFFICE SOLUTIONS AUTHORIZED FULL-LINE EQUIPMENT SOLUTIONS CANON DEALER • Analog & Digital Copiers • Printers • Facsimiles TM • Color Copiers • Scanners NETWORK SOLUTIONS • Digital Network Equipment Printers • Fax • Scanners Multi-Function Machines • Certified Network Engineers (CNE) on Staff SALES • SERVICE SERVICE & SUPPORT SOLUTIONS • NECS, The Industry’s Benchmark RENTALS • LEASE • SUPPLIES Company for Excellence in COST PER COPY PROGRAM Support & Maintenance Service New England Copy Specialist Inc. WOBURN • BOSTON 617-935-4340 Toll Free 1-800-321-6327
  • 5. LETTERS TO THE EDITOR Publisher John F. McManus Editor “Staying the Course” God’s Role Gary Benoit a Giant Failure in Human Affairs Senior Editor Having just returned from spending two The power and integrity of THE NEW AMERI- William F. Jasper years in Baghdad as an International Police CAN is rooted not only in its superb research Advisor, I can attest to the fact that the Iraqi but also in its Biblical perspective, its un- Copy Editor security forces are not ready to assume the derstanding of God’s role in human affairs. Kurt Williamsen enormous task of self-sufficiency and pro- R. Cort Kirkwood’s November 27 article Contributors tection of the Iraqi people. The majority of “ER Overload” presents a fascinating view Dennis J. Behreandt Iraqi soldiers and policemen are themselves of that role. Christopher S. Bentley corrupt to a magnitude that would appall Kirkwood’s article states, “Nothing less Steven J. DuBord most Americans, and things are not getting than the survival of the American healthcare Thomas R. Eddlem any better. system, the finest in the world, is at stake.” Jodie Gilmore What needs to happen is a total rework- He cites “anchor babies,” i.e., children of William P. Hoar ing of that country’s government from the illegal aliens born in this country, as posing Warren Mass Michael E. Telzrow top down. Our own politicians and military a substantial degree of that threat. Joe Wolverton II, J.D. leaders have been making the fatal mistake How ironic that a healthcare system, which of trying to rebuild Iraq from the bottom happens to serve as the state’s sole agent for Editorial Assistant up, spending billions of dollars on train- the legislated murder of the unborn, should Ann Shibler ing for the average soldier and policeman. find its survival threatened by living babies In the last two years I have observed (and brought to term. Art Director reported, but to no avail) that no amount of Could it be that God is responding to Joseph W. Kelly training will help them unless and until the the sins of our nation in the same way he Desktop Publishing Specialist government itself is reformed. The Ministry responded to those of ancient Israel? Con- Steven J. DuBord of Interior needs to be cleaned out, purged sider that among Israel’s numerous sins, the of the criminals who are in control of the one God cited repeatedly was the Israelites’ Research Iraqi Police Service. The same applies to willingness to “burn their sons and daugh- Mary Benoit their defense ministry. Until that is done we ters in the fire,” resulting in His chosen na- Brian T. Farmer Bonnie M. Gillis are spinning our wheels, vainly attempting tion’s conquest and displacement by foreign to create a strong foundation in the shifting hordes. Marketing sands of corruption, meanwhile sacrificing Perhaps we need to assess the madness Larry Greenley the lives of American soldiers and civilian of open borders in time of war as reflecting George R. Kotalik contractors. the retraction of God’s protective hand, His We need to regain the control that we lost, spent tolerance with a purportedly Christian Web Manager either by peaceful means or by force, in nation’s sanctioned idolatry, and His will- Brian Witt order to make things work in Iraq. If we do ingness to supplant its people for others (be Advertising/Circulation not, then we will see thousands more of our they Mexican Catholic or Arab Moslem) Julie DuFrane heroes lost for nothing other than a stubborn, who bring their children to term. Perhaps “stay the course” mentality (THE NEW AMER- we should consider the possibility that, de- ICAN, “Rumsfeld Goes,” November 27). The spite all of the righteous appeals to leaders to present course is a giant failure, with Iraqi honor their Bible-sworn oaths and to uphold politicians deliberately making bad choices Bible-shaped laws crafted by virtuous and for no other reason than to defy us by reject- visionary Founding Fathers (fostering pre- Printed in the U.S.A. • ISSN 0885-6540 P.O. Box 8040 • Appleton, WI 54912 ing our advice. My experience over the last sumptions that “we are delivered to do these 920-749-3784 • 920-749-3785 (fax) two years has shown that these people will abominations”), we have reached the limit www.thenewamerican.com ignore all of the advice we give them no mat- of God’s longsuffering, whereby He declares Rates are $39 per year (Hawaii and Canada, ter the consequences, simply because they today what He declared to the prophet Jer- add $9; foreign, add $27) or $22 for six months (Hawaii and Canada, add $4.50; foreign, add have no respect for Westerners. emiah, “Pray not for this people, for I will $13.50). Copyright ©2007 by American Opin- The best answer to our Iraq predicament not hear.” ion Publishing, Inc. Periodicals postage paid at is to either take back total control of that na- ROBERT AGUIRRE Appleton, WI and additional mailing offices. Post- master: Send any address changes to THE NEW tion and its currently inept government, or BELLE HARBOR NEW YORK , AMERICAN, P.O. Box 8040, Appleton, WI 54912. withdraw our troops, civilians, and monetary support immediately. Any other alternative Send your letters to: THE NEW AMERICAN, P.O. THE NEW AMERICAN is pub- lished biweekly by Ameri- will keep us in the rut where we currently Box 8040, Appleton, WI 54912. Or e-mail: can Opinion Publishing find ourselves. editorial@thenewamerican.com. Due to vol- Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of The John MONTE R. HEIL ume received, not all letters can be answered. Birch Society. CLARKSTON, WASHINGTON Letters may be edited for space and clarity. THE NEW AMERICAN • JANUARY 22, 2007 5
  • 6. Oral Chelation Formula “ORA-PLUS” INGREDIENTS AMOUNT %RDA INGREDIENTS AMOUNT %RDA Vitamin A (Beta Carotene) 25,000 I.U. 500 Magnesium (Oxide) 400 mg 100 Vitamin D (Fish Liver Oil) 650 I.U. 162 Iron (Fumerate) 10 mg 55.56 Vitamin E (d Alpha Tocopherol) 650 I.U. 2,166 Iodine (Potassium Iodine) 125 mcg 83.33 Vitamin C (asc. Acid & Ca. Ascorbate) 4,000 mg 6,667 Copper (Gluconate) 250 mcg 12.5 Vitamin B-1 (Thiamine HCl) 200 mg 13,333 Zinc (Gluconate) 30 mg 200 Vitamin B-2 ( Riboflavin) 50 mg 2,941 Chromium 200 mcg * Vitamin B-6 (Pyridoxine HCl) 150 mg 7,500 Selenium 250 mcg * Niacin 50 mg 250 Potassium (Chloride & Citrate) 400 mg * Niacinamide 50mg 250 Manganese (Gluconate) 5 mg * Pantothenic Acid (d-Calcium Pantothenate) 500 mg 5,000 Adrenal 50 mg * Vitamin B-12 (Cobalamin) 250 mcg 4,166 Thymus 50 mg * Folic Acid 400 mcg 100 L-Cysteine HCl 750 mg * Biotin 100mcg 33 di-Methionine 175 mg * Choline (Bitartrate) 725 mg * Spleen 50 mg * Inositol 40 mg * Marine Lipids 50 mg * PABA (Para Amino Benzoic Acid) 250 mg * Hawthorn Berry 25 mg * Calcium (Carbonate) 400 mg 40 * RDA has not been established cwasem @ wasems.com 800 6th St. • Clarkston, WA 99403 • 1-800-548-2804
  • 7. Inside Track Saddam Hanged for Crimes Committed While Backed by United States The media has widely reported the fact the same article, it was reported that that Saddam Hussein’s December 30 ex- Donald Rumsfeld (who recently re- ecution had been ordered as punishment signed as Secretary of Defense) went for the killings of 148 men and boys in to Baghdad in December 1983 and met the northern town of Dujail in 1982. with Saddam Hussein. Less reported is the fact that Saddam In an article in the Washington Post enjoyed a considerable amount of U.S. for December 30, 2002, “U.S. Had Key support during the 1980s and before. Role in Iraq Buildup,” Michael Dobbs An April 10, 2003 report by UPI writer also referenced the 1983 meeting be- AP Images Richard Sale stated that Saddam’s “first tween Rumsfeld and Saddam, describ- contacts with U.S. officials date back to Saddam Hussein ing the future defense secretary as being 1959, when he was part of a CIA-autho- “among the people instrumental in tilt- rized six-man squad tasked with assassinating then Iraqi Prime ing U.S. policy toward Baghdad during the 1980-88 Iran-Iraq Minister Gen. Abd al-Karim Qasim.... The CIA/Defense Intelli- war.” Dobbs continued: “The administrations of Ronald Reagan gence Agency relation with Saddam intensified after the start of and George H.W. Bush authorized the sale to Iraq of numerous the Iran-Iraq war in September of 1980.” items that had both military and civilian applications, including In a briefing with White House Press Secretary Ari Fleischer poisonous chemicals and deadly biological viruses, such as an- on January 27, 2003, White House reporter Russell Mokhiber thrax and bubonic plague.” referenced an article the previous day in the San Francisco It is ironic that of all the possible charges that could have been Chronicle that a number of major American corporations — in- leveled against the now-deceased dictator, those responsible for cluding Hewlett-Packard and Bechtel — helped Saddam Hus- his conviction and execution focused on a massacre that occurred sein beef up his military in the 1980s. Mokhiber said that in when he enjoyed considerable U.S. support. The Lies That Led to Iraq In a report that garnered little if any attention in the United States, that was kept secret until now by the British Official Secrets Act, in mid-December the Independent, a London newspaper, reported Ross said, “at no time did HMG [Her Majesty’s Government] that the British government’s (and hence, the U.S. government’s) assess that Iraq’s WMD (or any other capability) posed a threat case for war in Iraq was based on lies. According to the report, to the UK or its interests.” Moreover, he said it was a widely held the case for war was “torn apart by the publication of previously view among British officials that the Iraqi regime had been “ef- suppressed evidence that Tony Blair lied over Saddam Hussein’s fectively contained.” weapons of mass destruction.” The evidence comes from British According to British Members of Parliament (MPs), it appears diplomat Carne Ross, a negotiator for the British government at that the British Foreign Office sought to keep Ross’ testimony the UN who participated in crafting UN sanctions against the secret because of its explosive contents. According to the Inde- regime of Saddam Hussein. pendent, the testimony was revealed only after several MPs from While his UN service is in no way a mark of distinction, Ross the [House of] Commons Select Committee on Foreign Affairs may have been well placed to examine the evidence that was used pressured the Foreign Office on the issue of suppression of the to justify the Bush administration’s invasion of Iraq. In testimony information under the Official Secrets Act. According to one MP from the Foreign Affairs Committee, “There was blood on the carpet over this. I think it’s pretty clear the Foreign Office used the Official Secrets Act to suppress this evidence, by hanging it like a Sword of Damacles [sic] over Mr. Ross, but we have called their bluff.” Ross’ hitherto secret testimony was delivered to a panel inves- tigating British intelligence blunders prior to the start of the Iraq invasion. That investigation was led by Lord Butler of Brockwell (aka Robin Butler), a former private secretary to Margaret Thatch- er. According to the Independent, Ross told the Butler inquiry “there was no intelligence evidence of significant holdings of CW [chemical warfare], BW [biological warfare] or nuclear material” held by Iraq. “There was, moreover, no intelligence or assessment AP Images Carne Ross during my time in the job that Iraq had any intention to launch an attack against its neighbours or the UK or the US,” Ross added. THE NEW AMERICAN • JANUARY 22, 2007 7
  • 8. Inside Track Securing a Pardon for Secure Borders “Everybody realizes that President Bush has some kind of com- his civil rights. mitment to an open-border policy with Mexico,” exclaimed Con- Both Jose gressman Dana Rohrabacher (R-Calif.) at a press conference held Compean and at the steps of the Old Orange County Courthouse in Santa Ana, Ignacio Ramos California, on December 21, 2006. have been ordered Congressman Rohrabacher was joined by Border Patrol agent to begin serving Jose Compean and his family to call upon the president to grant their sentences a presidential pardon to two U.S. Border Patrol agents who are on January 17. being treated as criminals by the U.S. Justice Department for During Christ- simply performing their duties to secure our country. mas, President Border Patrol agents Jose Compean and Ignacio Ramos were Bush pardoned Jose Compean joined Sam Antonio sentenced in October 2006 to 12 and 11 years respectively for 16 criminals in- by Congressman Dana an incident that occurred along the El Paso, Texas, border in cluding five drug Rohrabacher (right) February 2005. That incident involved both agents in a non-fatal dealers. In light shooting of an admitted drug smuggler, Osbaldo Aldrete-Da- of this, 51 con- vila, as he tried to smuggle 743 pounds of marijuana in his van gressmen have signed a letter urging the White House to grant a into the United States. pardon to the two Border Patrol agents. Aldrete-Davila eventually escaped back into Mexico, but that Perhaps Congressman Rohrabacher put this whole distorted was only the beginning of an ordeal that would continue to haunt scenario into perspective when he stated, “They [the Bush admin- agents Compean and Ramos. To the shock of many, the drug istration] got their priorities totally backwards. We should be back- smuggler was given free medical treatment for his wounds and ing up our defenders, finding reasons to help our defenders, and immunity by the U.S. Attorney’s Office in exchange for his tes- finding reasons to put the bad guys away. Our President is treating timony against both agents. Furthermore, Aldrete-Davila, who the bad guys like good guys and the good guys like bad guys.” lives in Mexico and even failed to show up to testify against the For more information about the Compean/Ramos case, see “Be- agents, is suing the U.S. Border Patrol for $5 million for violating trayed in the Line of Duty” in our September 18, 2006 issue. Bush Administration Approves of UN Status for Homosexual Groups The UN Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) has granted and Gay Federation (ILGA), a group whose alliance with the official status to three European homosexual organizations. child-sex group NAMBLA (North American Man/Boy Love As- After initially objecting to awarding this coveted status to such sociation) earned rejection in past years. ILGA’s claims that it has groups, the Bush administration’s representative went along and broken with NAMBLA, the leading pedophilia promoter in the voted for it. United States, but it refuses to condemn NAMBLA. Two of the groups gaining UN approval were the Danish Na- The vote to accept the three organizations by the UN’s ECO- tional Association for Gays and Lesbians and the Gay Federation SOC was 23 in favor, 16 against, and 10 abstentions, with the in Germany. Also winning approval was the International Lesbian United States voting approval. Iran Challenges U.S. Dollar Hegemony Iran announced last month it is implementing policies designed to end its dependence on the U.S. dollar. The central bank of Iran has been ordered to convert dollars to euros. Overseas assets denominated in dollars will be transformed to euros and foreign trade will be done in euros. That will also apply to oil deals, although the BBC reports that payments in dollars are still expected to be accepted. The effect of these new policies has been downplayed since Iran already has most of its currency reserves in non-dollar assets. Other oil producers such as Russia, Venezuela, and Indonesia have also been shifting more and more oil income into alternate currencies. They are concerned about protecting their oil profits from the effect of a depreciating dollar. Iran’s announcement had little immediate effect on the dollar. 8 THE NEW AMERICAN • JANUARY 22, 2007
  • 9. Basque Terrorists Bomb Madrid Airport During Christmas Rush An explosion at the new Terminal 4 parking garage of the Madrid warning call from someone claiming to be with the ETA. Airport on December 30 is being attributed to the Basque terrorist The New Year’s bombing ends a nine-month cease-fire be- group ETA (Euskadi Ta Askatasuna, Basque for “Basque Home- tween the ETA and the Spanish government. Last fall the ETA land and Freedom”). The bomb, a stolen van reported to have been began an escalation of street violence, and in the days and weeks loaded with 1,200-1,800 pounds of explosives, brought down sev- before the bombing, Spanish police uncovered several ETA arms eral stories of the structure, shutting down the airport and stranding and explosives caches. The ETA, which has a long record of co- thousands of holiday travelers during the busiest travel period of operating with many different terrorist organizations, including the year. The ETA’s four-decade terror campaign has left more than al-Qaeda and other Mideast terrorists, is an avowedly Marxist- 850 dead and thousands wounded. Leninist group that has been supported Initial news stories reported only by Cuba, China, Libya, Russia, Syria, 20 injured and none killed in the latest and Iran. In 1978, Spanish intelligence bombing. However, shortly after the learned that the ETA was being directed bombing two men who were sleeping in by KGB agents in France and Spain, in- cars in the structure were reported miss- cluding Oleg Suranov, manager of the ing. They are believed to have perished Soviet airline Aeroflot in Spain, and in the blast. The relatively small number Anatoli Krassilinikov of the Soviet em- of casualties in relation to the size of bassy in Madrid. The Russian FSB (for- the blast at the busy terminal was due mer KGB) appears to still have a hand AP Images to the fact that the terminal had been in the ETA through its agents in Iran, evacuated after officials had received a Syria, France, Italy, and Spain. Congressional Inquiry Into 1995 Oklahoma City Bombing Fizzles investigation into John Doe Two,” and failure to “thoroughly in- vestigate the potential involvement of Andreas Strassmeir and Hussain al-Hussaini, et al., despite evidence showing they may have played a role.” The report is critical not only of past obstruction during the Clinton administration, but ongoing stonewalling during the cur- rent Bush administration. Without naming names, the report is critical of federal officials who were “less than responsive” and Oklahoma City National says the subcommittee “is dismayed that there remains a lack of AP Images Memorial in downtown willingness to examine legitimate issues.” Oklahoma City Survivors and family members of the 168 victims who died in the blast no doubt also are dismayed at the half-hearted (at best) After nearly two years of “investigation,” a congressional inquiry investigative effort by the Rohrabacher subcommittee, as well as into the 1995 bombing of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building its decision to release the report during the worst possible news in Oklahoma City has delivered a frustratingly inconclusive re- cycle. After spending two years digging into important ignored port that raises more questions than it answers. and covered-up evidence concerning one of the most important Rep. Dana Rohrabacher (R-Calif.), who chaired the inquest by terror attacks ever on America, the subcommittee issued its news the House Oversight and Investigations Subcommittee, had repeat- release announcing its report the day before Christmas, and then edly indicated that he would aggressively investigate evidence that issued the actual report the day after Christmas. convicted bombers Timothy McVeigh and Terry Nichols had been The Rohrabacher report concludes by saying: “We have found assisted by others. Specifically, he had targeted evidence point- no conclusive evidence of a foreign connection, but there remain ing toward foreign involvement of Middle Easterners, a German questions that need to be answered before this final chapter can national by the name of Andreas Strassmeir, and a group of Aryan justifiably be closed.” Indeed, the subcommittee has raised even bank robbers associated with a rural Oklahoma white separatist more questions with its own conduct, its reluctance to take on compound known as Elohim City. the former and current executive branch officials who have sty- The subcommittee report, entitled The Oklahoma City Bomb- mied the OKC bombing case from the beginning, and its failure ing: Was There A Foreign Connection?, justifiably criticizes the to follow through on much of the important evidence that was federal investigation for failing to follow important leads and ig- provided to it. noring obvious suspects and evidence. Particularly, it criticizes For information about this magazine’s OKC bombing investi- the Department of Justice and the FBI for “calling off any further gation, go to www.thenewamerican.com/okc. THE NEW AMERICAN • JANUARY 22, 2007 9
  • 10. Inside Track Rep. Ellison Becomes First Muslim U.S. Congressman On January 4, Rep. Keith Ellison (D-Minn.) became the first Muslim U.S. congressman. After the official oath of office with the other representatives in the House chamber, he used the Koran, the holy book of Islam, in an individual ceremonial oath with Rep. Nancy Pelosi, the new Speaker of the House. Ellison used the Koran once owned by Thomas Jefferson — thanks to the Library of Congress. But although the book Ellison used has, in the words of the Washington Post, “an unassailably all- American provenance,” and provided him with “a savvy bit of political symbolism,” it is probably safe to say that Jefferson never swore an oath on the Koran. Prior to the swearing-in ceremony, Ellison’s announcement that he would use the Koran provoked a strong reaction from Rep. Virgil Goode (R-Va.), who is concerned about the effects uncontrolled Keith Ellison looks at the immigration, including large numbers of Muslim immigrants, is having on our country and values. Koran once “I fear that in the next century we will have many more Muslims in the United States if we do not owned by adopt the strict immigration policies that I believe are necessary to preserve the values and beliefs AP Images Thomas traditional to the United States of America and to prevent our resources from being swamped,” he Jefferson warned last month in a letter to constituents. Comptroller General’s Bleak Report Largely Ignored A reading of the December 15, 2006 report issued by the Treasury tems that its officials were “unable to express an opinion” about Department and the Office of Management and Budget forces the the financial statements issued by the government. But Walker following conclusion: the United States is insolvent and there did say that “net social insurance commitments and other fis- is no way for the nation’s bills to be paid with current levels of cal exposures continue to grow and now total approximately $50 taxation and promised benefits. trillion … up from about $20 trillion in fiscal year 2000.” He But the report, produced during the days leading up to the continued: “Given these and other factors, it seems clear that Christmas season, drew next to no attention. If it weren’t for Dr. the nation’s current fiscal path is unsustainable and that tough Chris Martenson’s CMI Gold & Silver Newsletter, it might have choices by the President and the Congress are necessary in order been tossed into the nearest memory hole. to address the nation’s large and growing long-term fiscal imbal- In a statement accompanying the report’s release, Comptroller ance.” Our combined federal indebtedness, including unfunded General David Walker noted that the General Accounting Office future obligations, now totals more than 400 percent of the entire found so many deficiencies in the government’s accounting sys- gross domestic product! Venezuelan Voting Machine Firm Leaves U.S. Market In the aftermath of last fall’s disclosures that electronic voting machines can easily be adjusted to rig an election, a new concern has been raised about their use. Smart- matic, a Venezuelan company that makes electronic voting machines widely used in American elections, is facing an investigation into its ties to the Marxist regime of Hugo Chavez. However, the company will divest itself of Sequoia Voting Systems, the company’s U.S. subsidiary, ending the investigation. The investigation by the Treasury Department’s Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS) came after several investigative reports, chiefly by the Miami Herald, revealed the company’s ties to the Chavez regime. According to the Herald investigation, it was through a $200,000 investment in a voting software business run by Smartmatic’s president that the Venezuelan voting machine firm was able to get a foot- hold in the market place. Though the sale of Sequoia Voting Systems will mean the end for the CFIUS investigation, Smartmatic is not yet in the clear. According to the Miami Herald, the company has been in contact with the Justice Department to deny that it “paid a bribe to secure a $91 million contract to supply electronic voting machines in Venezuela.” Moreover, the Herald reports, agents from the IRS and the FBI “are in- New Venezuelan AP Images voting machine vestigating allegations involving tax evasion, an excessive commission to a lobbyist in Caracas and alleged death threats by Smartmatic President Antonio Mugica.” ■ 10 THE NEW AMERICAN • JANUARY 22, 2007
  • 11. QUICKQUOTES Former President Ford Disagreed With Invasion of Iraq “Rumsfeld and Cheney and the president made a big mistake in justifying going into the war in Iraq.” In tapes made more than two years ago but kept private until his death at his request, Gerald Ford told Washington Post reporter AP Images Bob Woodward that he disagreed not only with the claims about Iraq having weapons of mass destruction but with the war itself. Primitive Indian in Brazil Shuns Wealth, Teaches a Lesson “I used to think that money was good and that I wanted to be rich, but now I don’t. A little bit might be good, but a lot is not. It only brings problems and suffering, when what we really want is tranquility.” The area in which Pio Cinta-Larga lives with his tribe in remote western Brazil has been inundated by prospectors seeking diamonds believed to be in the soil of the upper Amazon jungle. The wealth gained from mining the diamonds has brought many problems to the once peaceful area. Nevada Town Enacts Measure to Combat Illegal Immigration “These people are breaking the law and they should be pros- ecuted somehow.” Pahrump, Nevada, town board member Michael Miraglia is pleased with passage of the measure he proposed that outlaws giving town benefits to “undocumented foreign workers,” forbids AP Images flying any foreign flag without an accompanying American flag, and declares English the town’s official language. Comedian Targets the President — Again! “President Bush has received a copy of the 96-page Iraq Study Group report. When they gave it to him, President Bush said, ‘Don’t tell me how it ends.’ They said, ‘Uh, it doesn’t.’ ” In his role as the host of television’s Tonight Show, Jay Leno pokes fun at a wide variety of personalities and, in the process, oftentimes delivers incisive comments about current events. Americans Spend Countless Hours in Front of Computers and Television “The news [in this report] means that America is making a smooth transition from couch potato to mouse potato. Put another way, I suspect the only exercise Americans are getting is walking between their TVs and their computers.” Data in the U.S. Census Bureau’s latest Statistical Abstracts of the United States pointed to increased time spent at computers and television thereby prompting a comment from Silicon Valley technology forecaster Paul Saffo. Former Secretary of State Skeptical About Increasing U.S. Troop Strength in Iraq “I am not persuaded that another surge of troops into Baghdad for the purpose of suppression of this communitarian violence, this civil war, will work.” Former Secretary of State Colin Powell, who also served as AP Images chairman of the military’s Joint Chiefs of Staff, additionally claimed that the U.S. Army is “about broken.” Former General Motors Manager Not Surprised at Toyota’s Success “We figured we were going to have a problem. We taught them how to beat us.” Recalling that he often gave plant tours to Japanese executives, retired G.M. plant manager Dick Lynch early expected that Toyota would become a threat to his company’s status as the world’s larg- est auto manufacturer. Some Things Never Change “The whole aim of politics is to keep the populace alarmed (and hence clamorous to be led to safety) by menacing it with an endless series of hobgoblins, all of them imaginary.” H.L. Mencken, 1920 ■ — COMPILED BY JOHN F. MCMANUS THE NEW AMERICAN • JANUARY 22, 2007 11
  • 12. RUSSIA Putin’s Newscom The return of the iron fist. by William F. Jasper fluence of ex-Soviet spies has ballooned and the West — have also expressed sur- under President Vladimir Putin.” prise and alarm at the apparent resurrec- ‘‘K GB influence ‘soars under Putin,’ ” blared the headline of a BBC online article for The study, which looked at 1,061 top Kremlin, regional, and corporate jobs, found that “78 percent of the Russian tion of the dreaded Soviet secret police. After all, for the past decade and a half these same experts have been pointing to December 13, 2006. The following day, a elite” are what are known in Russia as the alleged demise of the KGB as the pri- similar headline echoed a similarly alarm- “siloviki,” which is to say, former mem- mary evidence supporting their claim that ing story at the website of Der Spiegel, bers of the KGB or its domestic succes- communism is dead. one of Germany’s largest news magazines: sor, the FSB. The author of the study, Olga From the Bolshevik Revolution in “Putin’s Russia: Kremlin Riddled with Kryshtanovskaya, expressed shock at her 1917, the Russian security apparatus Former KGB Agents.” own findings. “I was very shocked when I Cheka (and its later permutations: OGPU, In the opening sentences of Der Spie- looked at the boards of major companies NKVD, MGB, KGB) had been the “sword gel’s article, readers are informed that: and realized there were lots of people who and shield” of the communist world “Four out of five members of Russia’s po- had completely unknown names, people revolution. litical and business elite have a KGB past, who were not public but who were defi- “We stand for organized terror,” de- according to a new study by the prestigious nitely, obvious siloviki,” she told Reuters. clared Felix Dzerzhinsky, the first chief [Russian] Academy of Sciences. The in- Other supposed experts — in Russia of the Cheka for Soviet dictator Vladimir 12 THE NEW AMERICAN • JANUARY 22, 2007
  • 13. and the Cheka. We reported in 2002 on Putin’s restora- tion of important communist symbols: • the Red Star, as Russia’s official military emblem; • the Red Banner, as Rus- sia’s military flag; • the music of the old So- viet anthem, albeit with new words; • and his attempt, along with Moscow Mayor Yuri Luzh- kov, to restore the giant statue of Dzerzhinsky to its former place of honor in Moscow’s Lubyanka Square. Public opposition to the glo- rification of “Iron Felix” have (temporarily) scotched Pu- tin’s plans for Dzerzhinsky’s statue. Nevertheless, as we have reported, in 2005, Putin AP Images did restore a smaller bust of the mass-murdering Chekist Terror chief returns: A statue of Felix Dzerzhinsky, founder of the dreaded Cheka (forerunner of the KGB), was to a pedestal at the infamous unveiled in Minsk, Belarus, in May 2006. Putin proposes restoring an identical statue of the mass murderer to Lubyanka headquarters of the its former place in Moscow’s Lubyanka Square. KGB-FSB. Any reasonable person Lenin. In 1918, Dzerzhinsky launched the “Americans got so drunk at the USSR’s would have seen these events as very sig- campaign of arrests and executions known funeral that they’re still hung over.” And nificant clues that maybe Vladimir Putin is as the Red Terror. Krasnaya Gazeta, the stumbling around in their post-inebria- not the “reformer” and the “democrat” that Bolshevik newspaper, expressed the Chek- tion haze, many of these Americans have Boris Yeltsin, Bill Clinton, George Bush, ist credo when it reported approvingly in only recently begun noticing that they had and the New York Times told us he is. And 1918 of the terror campaign: “We will prematurely written the KGB’s epitaph, if those clues weren’t enough, there is a make our hearts cruel, hard and immov- even as it was arising vampire-like from trail of corpses from Chechnya to London, able, so that no mercy will enter them, and the coffin. as well as Putin’s Soviet-style foreign and so that they will not quiver at the sight of a However, there is really no excuse domestic policies that hearken to Brezh- sea of enemy blood.” for Olga Kryshtanovskaya or any of her nev and Andropov, if not Stalin. The recent Unflinching cruelty and merciless, American counterparts to be stunned by murder-by-poison of KGB-FSB defector bloody terror have been the trademark the current siloviki dominance in Putin’s Alexander Litvinenko in London (see ar- of the communist secret police, from the Russia. For nearly a decade, even before ticle on page 17) and the murders of jour- Cheka to the KGB. Obviously, the demise he became Russia’s “president,” T HE nalist Anna Politkovskaya, special forces of such an organization would be cause NEW AMERICAN has been reporting on operative Movladi Baisarov, central bank for much rejoicing. Hence, when the KGB Putin’s KGB pedigree and was ordered dissolved and its chairman, his steady implementation General Vladimir Kryuchkov, was arrest- of a long-range Soviet de- For nearly a decade, even before Putin ed in 1991 after attempting to overthrow ception strategy, includ- “liberal reformer” Mikhail Gorbachev in ing the public rehabilita- became Russia’s “president,” THE NEW the failed “August Coup,” many people in tion and refortifying of the AMERICAN has been reporting on his KGB the West were only too willing to pop the KGB-FSB. champagne corks and start celebrating our We reported in 1999, for pedigree and his steady implementation supposed victory over the Evil Empire. instance, on Putin’s omi- of a long-range Soviet deception strategy, But, as Mikhail Leontiyev, commenta- nously revealing speech including the public rehabilitation and tor for Russia’s state-controlled Channel for Security Organs Day, One television, recently noted, repeat- celebrating the accom- refortifying of the KGB-FSB. ing a phrase popular among the siloviki: plishments of Dzerzhinsky THE NEW AMERICAN • JANUARY 22, 2007 13
  • 14. RUSSIA rely upon verifiable facts, If Golitsyn is correct, then rather than combined with analysis in- winning the Cold War, as Western politi- With his knowledge of the KGB strategy, formed by the incomparable cians, military leaders, academicians, and Anatoliy Golitsyn accurately foresaw, years insights of Anatoliy Golit- media figures have been proclaiming since syn, arguably the most im- 1991, we instead have been celebrating ahead of actual events, many specific portant Soviet defector ever while in very grave peril. Like the ancient developments that have now occurred. to come to the West. Trojans, we have fallen for one of the old- He correctly predicted the opening of the No other defector has had est deceptions. Unable to breach Troy’s access to the KGB’s inner impregnable walls, the Greeks feigned de- Berlin Wall, the reunification of Germany, sanctum, where the Soviet feat and pretended to fade away. Believing and the end of the Warsaw Pact. Union’s top-secret, long- that they had finally defeated the Greeks, range plans for strategic de- the Trojans brought the Greeks’ peace of- ception were hatched. And fering — the giant wooden horse — inside official Andrei Kozlov, and ex-FSB gener- no other Russian expert comes close to their formidable walls. And while the Tro- al Anatoly Trofimov — to name but a few matching Mr. Golitsyn’s accurate analy- jans were engaged in celebrating — well, — are sending an unmistakable message sis and prescient predictions concerning we know the rest of the story. to everyone with eyes to see and ears to the Soviet bloc and its current incarna- According to Golitsyn, in 1960 the hear that the KGB (though not under that tion as Russia and the Commonwealth Communist Party Central Committee of name) is firmly in control of the Kremlin. of Independent States (CIS). Golitsyn’s the Soviet Union, with implementing help astounding track record, which stretches from the KGB, secretly set in motion a Defector Exposes Deception back more than 40 years, fundamentally long-range plan that is still playing out The media-anointed Russian experts challenges every major assumption under- today. A key feature of this plan would have proven time and again to be spec- pinning U.S. policies concerning Russia, be a whole series of controlled “splits” tacularly, dangerously wrong. We, at THE the CIS, China, and the global communist within the communist movement and be- NEW AMERICAN, have chosen instead to system. tween communist countries that the Krem- lin strategists would use to manipulate Western policies. This was initiated at the 1960 Moscow Congress of 81 com- munist parties from around the world. All genuine factions, splits, and power struggles within the communist bloc were completely ended at that meeting. From that point forward, any such infighting between communists, or any popular resistance against communism, would be artifi- cial and under the full control of the extensive secret-police networks permeating societies under communist rule. The “Sino-Soviet Split,” the alleged splits between the USSR and Romania, Yugo- slavia, and Czechoslovakia, and Moscow’s “break” with so-called “Eurocommunist” moderates in Western Europe were all elaborate deceptions managed by the Kremlin and AP Images its KGB strategists. An equal- ly elaborate deception is the Mikhail Gorbachev, seen here with Putin at the 2004 German-Russian Summit in Germany. Gorbachev, who KGB-created “Russian Mafia,” pretended to abolish the KGB, remains a key Kremlin operative, helping Putin sell the “new, reformed” image which is blamed for the cor- of Russia to the West. ruption, violence, chaos, and 14 THE NEW AMERICAN • JANUARY 22, 2007
  • 15. Sounding the Warning mayhem that have plagued Rus- sia and the CIS since they “went capitalist.” In truth, all of the leading Russian crime bosses, the “oligarchs,” — Loutchansky, I Gusinsky, Berezovsky, Khordo- n 1984, ex-KGB officer Anatoliy Golitsyn’s James Angleton, kovsky, Mogilevich — are vet- important book New Lies for Old appeared, former chief of erans of the KGB-FSB and/or warning of a coming spectacular disinfor- counterintelligence the Komsomol, the Communist mation offensive by the communists. This stra- at the CIA Youth, and were “set up” in tegic long-range offensive, he said, would be business by the KGB, follow- aimed at convincing the West that communism ing a refined version of Lenin’s had disappeared, in order that the West might New Economic Program of the accept gradual convergence with the “former” 1920s. Besides providing the communist states. Here are some of his (then) fictitious appearance of a genu- startling predictions: ine free market to attract West- • “The ‘liberalization’ [in the Soviet Union] ern capital and technology, the would be spectacular and impressive. Formal KGB-Mafia also provides an pronouncements might be made about a reduc- efficient means for dealing with tion in the communist party’s role; its monopoly AP Images political undesirables: when a would be apparently curtailed. An ostensible foreign or domestic “trouble- separation of powers between the legislative, maker” needs to be liquidated, the executive, and the judiciary might be in- it can be done with the blame troduced. The Supreme Soviet would be given resentation from the Soviet Union and East- falling on unidentified criminal greater apparent power and the president and ern Europe. ‘Europe from the Atlantic to the elements, rather than the State, deputies greater apparent independence.” Urals’ would turn out to be a neutral, socialist or communist officials. • “The communist strategists are equipped, Europe.” in pursuing their policy, to engage in maneu- In 1995, Golitsyn published The Perestroika Amazingly Accurate vers and strategems beyond the imagination Deception, a 250-page book updating the un- Predictions of Marx or the practical reach of Lenin and paralleled insights of his earlier analysis in New With his intimate knowledge of unthinkable to Stalin. Among such previously Lies for Old. the KGB strategy, Golitsyn ac- unthinkable strategems are the introduction • “The [Soviet] strategists are concealing the curately foresaw, years ahead of false liberalization in Eastern Europe and, secret coordination that exists and will continue of actual events, many specific probably, in the Soviet Union and the exhibi- between Moscow and the ‘nationalist’ leaders developments that have now oc- tion of spurious independence on the part of of [the] ‘independent’ republics.... This is not curred. He correctly predicted the regimes in Romania, Czechoslovakia, and true self-determination but the use of ‘national’ that Soviet dictator Yuri An- Poland.” forms in the execution of a common Communist dropov would be succeeded by • “If [liberalization] should be extended to strategy.” “a younger leader with a more East Germany, demolition of the Berlin Wall • “The power of the KGB remains as great liberal image,” perfectly describ- might even be contemplated.” as ever.... Talk of cosmetic changes in the KGB ing Mikhail Gorbachev and the • “The first communist strategy of strength- and its supervision is deliberately publicized to political restructuring process ening and stabilizing the bloc politically and support the myth of ‘democratization’ of the So- that would be carried out under economically has been assisted by Western eco- viet political system.” the name “perestroika.” nomic aid and by the acceptance of détente and • “Scratch these new, instant Soviet ‘demo- In his 1984 blockbuster book, cooperation with communist governments.... By crats,’ ‘anti-Communists,’ and ‘nationalists’ New Lies for Old, Golitsyn cor- accepting Sino-Soviet rivalry as genuine … the who have sprouted out of nowhere, and under- rectly predicted that Solidarity West is creating opportunities for the construc- neath will be found secret Party members or would be legalized in Poland tion of new alignments that will rebound, in the KGB agents.” and allowed to form a coali- long run, to its own detriment.... By providing • “After the Second World War the victori- tion government with the com- advanced technology first to the Soviet Union, ous allies correctly applied a de-nazification munists after sham multiparty then to China, the West has helped to shift the program to eliminate former Nazis and their elections. He also foresaw, with balance of military power against itself.... Tak- influence from the institutions and political life astonishing precision, democra- ing détente at its face value, the West has been of the new Germany. No equivalent de-commu- tization in Czechoslovakia, with ready to accept the notion of a long-term evo- nization program has been applied in the USSR a revival of former communist lution of communism and its ultimate conver- or Eastern Europe. The Soviet Party, the KGB, dictator Dubcek and close al- gence with the democratic system.” and the armed forces with their political com- lies; the opening of the Berlin • “The European Parliament might become missars remain intact.” ■ Wall and the reunification of an all-European socialist parliament with rep- — WILLIAM F. JASPER TNA • JANUARY 22, 2007 15
  • 16. RUSSIA will, drew up what they termed a “grand bargain” which recommended granting the Soviets $15 to $30 billion per year for several years. A few days later, on May 24, the New York Times went even further with an editorial (“A Western Spur to So- viet Reform”) urging a Soviet bailout package of $150 billion. This was followed with an article by Allison and Blackwill in the CFR’s prestigious journal Foreign Affairs calling for aid of “$15 billion to $20 billion per year for each of the next three years.” At a 47-nation Soviet aid conference convened AP Images in Washington in January 1992, President George Bush (the elder) pledged Controlled opposition: Opponents of Putin’s policies demonstrate in Moscow on December 16, 2006. Virtually all more than $5 billion. But opposition groups in Russia have either been started by the KGB or infiltrated and taken over by it. that was just to prime the pump; untold billions Germany as the core for a United Europe; de Marenches, who headed French intel- have followed since. the implementation of “democracy” in ligence, both saw Golitsyn as an invalu- As costly as our Russian foreign policy such countries as Romania and Hungary; able ally and an indispensable asset in has been financially, the cost to our nation- the end of the Warsaw Pact; and the efforts our efforts to understand the Soviets’ geo- al security has been immeasurably greater. of Eastern European governments to join political chess game. Unfortunately, both For more than two decades, America’s the European Community as a prelude to of these men were opposed by powerful leaders have marched our nation headlong unification with the West. Golitsyn even forces in their governments who wanted into the deadly perestroika trap, ignoring stated that these changes would begin dur- to believe in and embrace the perestroika the warnings of Anatoliy Golitsyn and the ing the five years following his 1984 book deception. Angleton and de Marenches overwhelming evidence that vindicates — which actually happened, from Gor- were fired, while Golitsyn and his warn- those warnings. They have embraced the bachev’s appointment in 1985 to the re- ings were ignored — when they weren’t Russian and CIS leaders as our “allies” newal in Eastern Europe since early 1989. scorned and ridiculed. and intertwined our military, police, and Mark Riebling, author of the important intelligence agencies as “partners” in 1994 book Wedge: The Secret War Be- A Not-so-grand Bargain global security. tween the FBI and CIA, says of Golitsyn’s On May 20, 1991, Russia’s economic Now, with Putin’s FSB Chekists coming predictions in New Lies for Old: “139 out adviser Grigory A. Yavlinsky met with brazenly into the open, it is long past time of 148 were fulfilled by the end of 1993 a group of cognoscenti from the Council to repudiate this deception and reverse — an accuracy rate of nearly 94 percent.” on Foreign Relations (CFR), the private course — before the trap door is shut and That record is even more astonishing when U.S. organization that has dominated bolted behind us. ■ one considers that Mr. Riebling’s assess- both Republican ment includes only the more prominent of and Democratic ad- Golitsyn’s projections; it does not include ministrations since many of his more subtle analyses and fore- at least FDR’s time. EXTRA COPIES AVAILABLE casts. No other foreign policy analyst even The group, which ➧ Additional copies of this issue of comes close to Golitsyn’s level of accu- included Stephen THE NEW AMERICAN are available at racy and depth of analysis. Sachs, Graham Alli- quantity-discount prices. To order, visit James J. Angleton, the CIA’s chief of son, Stanley Fischer, www.thenewamerican.com/marketplace/ counterintelligence, and Alexander Count and Robert Black- or see the card between pages 38-39. 16 THE NEW AMERICAN • JANUARY 22, 2007
  • 17. RUSSIA Putin, Poison, and Murder The recent murder-by-poison of Russian KGB/FSB defector Alexander Litvinenko is a potent warning about the dangers of our new security “partnership” with Putin’s Russia. AP Images Alexander Litvinenko, (right) who was killed by polonium poisoning, is shown here at a 1998 press conference in which he accused Putin’s FSB of kidnappings, extortion, and contract murders. The man in the ski mask is a fellow FSB officer. by William F. Jasper tion, the Kremlin’s heavy-handed tactics KGB. Litvinenko was sure that he had to thwart the efforts of British police de- been poisoned later that evening, when he A s Alexander Litvinenko lay tectives sent to Russia to investigate the was seized with violent vomiting. After dying under tight police pro- poisoning do little for the credibility of three weeks of agonizing deterioration, in tection at London’s University Putin’s protestations of innocence and his which the fit 43-year-old Litvinenko lost College hospital, he pointed an accusing pledges to do everything possible to help his hair and shrunk to a shell of his former finger at the man he believed responsible solve the crime. self, he died on November 23. for ordering his assassination: Russian Mr. Litvinenko had become ill on No- Even as his life was ebbing away, Alex- President Vladimir Putin. The dying man vember 1, after a meeting at London’s ander and his wife, Marina, had been hop- had good cause for suspecting Putin. Mayfair Millennium Hotel with three ing for a recovery. “I did not lose hope,” Abundant evidence, including a radioac- Russian “businessmen”: Andrei Lugovoi, she told the Sunday Times of London. tive trail of polonium-210, the substance Dmitry Kovtun, and Vyacheslav Soko- “He was a very handsome man, but each used to poison him, leads right back to lenko. Lugovoi acknowledges that he is day for him was like 10 years, he became Putin’s operatives in Moscow. In addi- a former agent of the FSB, the renamed older in how he looked.” Mrs. Litvinenko THE NEW AMERICAN • JANUARY 22, 2007 17
  • 18. RUSSIA “This is not a tool chosen by informed by Russia’s chief prosecutor Yuri a group of amateurs. These Chaika that, in the words of a Reuters re- The Kremlin’s heavy-handed tactics people had some serious re- port, they would be “virtually relegated to to thwart the efforts of British police sources behind them.” the role of observers,” as Russian police Polonium-210 leaves a ra- carried out the interviews. Mr. Chaika, a detectives sent to Russia to investigate dioactive trail and, as many Putin flunky, further made it clear that no the Litvinenko poisoning do little for the news stories have noted, that suspects would be extradited to England. credibility of Putin’s protestations of trail has turned up wherever He has kept the British detectives on a Lugovoi and Kovtun went very short leash. innocence and his pledges to do everything in London, Germany, and Spokesmen for Putin have denounced possible to help solve the crime. Russia: a hotel restaurant, suspicions of Putin’s involvement as “ab- airplanes, an apartment, a surd” and part of a frame-up and conspir- soccer stadium. One of the acy to discredit Putin and Russia at home added: “Even until the last day, and the more important polonium traces is on a and abroad. As to be expected, the Russian day before when he became unconscious, passport photo of Kovtun, which he left at press, reflecting Putin’s control, points the I thought that he would be OK. We were the Hamburg City Hall in Germany, where accusing finger at Putin’s enemies, most both completely sure he would recover. he had applied for a residency permit two frequently citing Boris Berezovsky, a for- We had been talking about bone-marrow days before meeting with Litvinenko. mer Putin ally now in exile in London, as transplants and looking to the future.” When British police detectives from the likely culprit. Not surprisingly, many The poison, initially thought to be thalli- Scotland Yard went to Russia to interview journalists in the West have picked up and um, turned out to be polonium-210, which a number of witnesses and suspects, in- parroted this theme as well. Dr. Andrea Sella, lecturer in chemistry at cluding the three men who had met with However, in addition to considerable University College London, told reporters Litvinenko, they were told that two of the evidence tying Putin to the murder through was “one of the rarest substances on the main objects of interest, Lugovoi and Kov- his secret-service minions, it is clear that planet” and few could obtain it. “This is tun, were in hospital quarantine for radia- he — not Berezovsky — qualifies as the not some random killing,” Dr. Sella said. tion poisoning. The detectives were also top candidate possessing the classical cri- teria for a crime suspect: mo- tive, opportunity, and means. Beslan massacre: Parents mourn the loss of their children, killed at a school in Beslan, Russia, on September 3, 2004. Was Putin’s FSB behind the event attributed to Chechen terrorists? Alexander Litvinenko — and much evidence — says yes. What Litvinenko Knew Mr. Litvinenko, an ex-agent of the Soviet KGB (and its successor, the Russian FSB), was a fierce critic of Putin even before fleeing to Britain with his family in 2000. He had first come to the atten- tion of the Western media in 1998 while still a lieutenant- colonel in the FSB, creating a stir with his public revela- tion that he had been ordered to assassinate Berezovsky, one of Russia’s richest new oligarchs. It was an order he refused to carry out. The head of the FSB at the time: Vladi- mir Putin. After obtaining asylum in England, Mr. Litvinenko be- came an even bigger thorn in Putin’s side. His power- ful 2002 book, Blowing Up Russia: Terror From Within, with Yuri Felshtinsky, pres- AP Images ents convincing evidence which supports the charges 18 THE NEW AMERICAN • JANUARY 22, 2007
  • 19. of investigative journalists and Russian analysts that the infamous series of apartment bombings in Mos- cow and Volgodonsk in 1999 were provocations by Putin’s FSB, not the work of Chechen terrorists. The September 1999 bombings killed over 300 people and wounded hundreds of others. Putin, who was named prime minister under President Boris Yeltsin just three weeks before the bombings began, expertly played up the incidents to stir public outrage in favor of retalia- tion against Chechnya. Yeltsin resigned under mysterious circumstances on December 31, 1999, naming Putin to succeed him as acting president. Putin then surprised other presidential candidates and gave himself an advantage by holding the presidential election in March 2000, rather than in the fall, as previously scheduled. Playing up his popular hard-line-against-terrorism image, Putin easily rode to victory. The bombings in Russia that were blamed on the Chechens couldn’t have come at a more opportune Anna Politkovskaya, Russia’s best-known journalist and a relentless foe of Putin and his terror war on Chechnya, AP Images was gunned down in October 2006, after an earlier poison attempt failed to kill her. Prodi’s Retinue I n the mid 1970s, the French, Italian, and Spanish communist Young Communists in the 1970s, then a top member of the Italian parties feigned a break with Moscow and launched their own Communist Party, and now head of the Democrats of the Left, an “independent” form of liberal “Eurocommunism.” While re- offshoot of the Communist Party; Minister of Social Solidarity Paolo maining faithful Soviet lackeys, Eurocommunist leaders like George Ferrero, a leader of the Communist Refoundation Party; and Eco- Marchais, Enrico Berlinguer, and Santiago Carillo publicly criticized nomic Minister Pier Luigi Bersani and Labor Minister Livia Turco, the Kremlin over human rights issues and denounced communist both former members of the Italian Communist Party, now with the terrorist groups — but only as a ploy to gain legitimacy and extend Democrats of the Left. Not to mention radical Marxists in the Prodi communist influence through democratic means. It has worked mag- cabinet such as Emma Bonino, Giuliano Amato, Fabio Mussi, Fran- nificently, allowing open “moderate” communists to gain political cesco Rutelli, and Alessandro Bianchi. power throughout Italy. Then there is Italy’s current president, Giorgio Napolitano, Prodi’s Many of these Italian politicians have had close relations with the partner in power. Napolitano became a member of the hard-core Soviet Union and Eastern bloc intelligence inner circle of the Italian Communist Party services for decades and have long been sus- after World War II. He even went so far as to pected as KGB/FSB assets. This is no small march in lockstep with Moscow’s Party line thing, since Italy is a member of NATO and when the Soviet Army marched into Hungary these officials have access to much secret and in 1956. Napolitano defended the brutal in- classified military and security information. vasion and denounced the heroic Hungarian And, like Prodi, many of them have also served freedom fighters as “thugs” and “despicable in high positions in the European Union and agents provocateur.” He would later claim have played key roles in the EU’s development that this “mistake” on his part had caused him toward a Soviet-style Marxist collective. “grievous self-critical torment.” But appar- Prodi’s left-wing Olive Tree coalition gov- ently not grievous enough torment to convert ernment boasts current and “former” com- from his Marxist ways; he is a member of one munists, such as Deputy Prime Minister and of the branches of the “reformed” Communist AP Images Foreign Minister Massimo D’Alema, who Romano Prodi Party, the Democrats of the Left. ■ was secretary of the Italian Federation of — WILLIAM F. JASPER THE NEW AMERICAN • JANUARY 22, 2007 19
  • 20. RUSSIA poisoning attempt in 2004, but in October 2006, just three weeks before the Lit- vinenko poisoning, she was gunned down in the eleva- tor of her Moscow apart- ment building. • The Ryazan Incident. On the night of September 22, 1999, an alert resident of an apartment complex in the Russian city of Ry- azan reported suspicious activities to local police. Responding, the police found a large quantity of hexogene explosive, timed to detonate at 5:30 the next morning. They evacuated the building and captured some of the bombers, who turned out to be (sur- prise!) FSB agents. Caught red-handed, the FSB then claimed that this had been AP Images merely an “exercise” and the substance was not re- ally hexogene, but sugar. KGB jihadists: Osama bin Laden with his second-in-command, Ayman al-Zawahiri, in a 2001 photo. Litvinenko said Litvinenko, in his book and al-Zawahiri, who made mysterious trips to Russia, China, and Bulgaria, was trained and directed by the KGB-FSB. in interviews, showed that the planned Ryazan bomb- time for Putin — or at a worse time for the most potent critics outside of Russia. As a ing was to be the culminating incident jus- Chechens, because they already had most former KGB/FSB insider, Litvinenko had tifying the invasion of Chechnya. of the concessions they were likely to get specific knowledge about Putin’s FSB op- • The 2004 Beslan Massacre. On from the Russians and any violence would erations and brought a level of credibil- September 1, 2004, terrorists took 1,200 mean a loss of these concessions. ity to many of the most serious charges children, parents, and teachers hostage at As Russia’s FSB chief, then as prime against Putin. Besides the ordered assas- an elementary school in Beslan, a town minister, and finally as president, Vladi- sination of Berezovsky and 1999 terror in the Russian republic of North Ossetia. mir Putin has been the driving force be- bombings, those charges include: The Russian military attacked the school hind Russia’s brutal terror occupation • The murder of Anna Politkovskaya, with flamethrowers, grenades, and ma- of Chechnya. Under his reign, Russian Russia’s bravest and most famous inves- chine guns. The death toll of 365 included bombers have pounded Chechnya’s cities tigative reporter. Best known for her re- 186 children, not to mention the hundreds and villages into rubble, while Russian peated dangerous travels inside Chechnya wounded. In addition to outrage over the ground forces have systematically en- and her unflinching reporting on Russian carnage caused by the Russian military at- gaged in massacres of civilians, as well as atrocities there, she was also the author tack on the school, there ensued demands widespread torture, rape, and looting. At of three books — The Dirty War, A Small for information about the “terrorists.” Why the same time, Putin has invoked the threat Corner of Hell, and Putin’s Russia — all had they been recently released from an of Chechen terrorism in Russia to justify of which severely indict Putin and his FSB prison and allowed into the Beslan more and more police-state controls in regime. Litvinenko was close to Polit- area? Litvinenko explained why, showing Russia and greater centralization of power kovskaya, and in a presentation to inter- that the only explanation that fit the evi- in his hands. national journalists at London’s Frontline dence was that the Beslan Massacre was Putin’s brutal foreign and domestic pol- Club, an independent media group, he an FSB provocation. icies have earned him many critics, both outlined the evidence for his charge that • The FSB/al-Qaeda Connection. In a at home and abroad. Many of his harshest Putin was directly responsible for her as- 2005 interview with the Polish newspaper critics inside Russia have already been si- sassination. (You can watch that presen- Rzeczpospolita, Litvinenko revealed that lenced — by murder, prison, or intimida- tation in streaming video at www.front- Ayman al-Zawahiri, the reputed Number 2 tion. Litvinenko was, arguably, one of his lineclub.com.) Politkovskaya survived a chief in al-Qaeda and the man second only 20 THE NEW AMERICAN • JANUARY 22, 2007
  • 21. to Osama bin Laden on the FBI’s “Most Litvinenko Must Die Wanted Terrorists” list, was trained by the The revelation that most Russian FSB. According to Litvinenko, likely sealed Alexander Since 9/11, al-Qaeda has become the new “Ayman al-Zawahiri trained at a Federal Litvinenko’s death warrant global menace, supposedly even more Security Service (FSB) base in Dagestan was his charge that Italy’s dangerous than the Soviet Union ever in 1998,” before being “transferred to Af- current prime minister, Ro- ghanistan, where he became Osama bin mano Prodi, was known as was. It certainly wouldn’t do to have it Laden’s deputy.” And, charged Litvinen- the KGB’s top man in Italy. widely known that our “partner” against ko, al-Zawahiri was not the only al-Qaeda If true, that would also make operative trained by the FSB. him one of Russia’s top as- terror, Putin, and his FSB, are joined at In the grim Stalinist world of the KGB/ sets in all of Europe, since the hip with the perpetrators of 9/11. FSB, revealing any one of these state se- Prodi served as president of crets would be more than sufficient cause the European Commission for relentless pursuit and execution. Ar- from September 1999 through November According to Alexander Litvinenko, guably the most damaging disclosure for 2004, one of the most critical periods of when he was planning to flee from Rus- Putin is Litvinenko’s charge concerning the European Union, which included the sia in 2000, he consulted his former KGB the FSB/al-Qaeda connection. All of launching of the euro currency, expansion boss and trusted friend, General Anatoly the other above-mentioned revelations of the EU to include former communist Trofimov, who advised him not to seek deal with Russia’s “internal affairs” and countries, and drafting of the proposed EU refuge in Italy, since it was loaded with Chechnya. And while world leaders and constitution. And if true, it would make KGB agents. “Don’t go to Italy,” General the world press have occasionally ex- Litvinenko a bomb that could, potentially, Trofimov said, “there are many KGB pressed outrage over the Kremlin’s ongo- topple governments, end high-level ca- agents among the politicians: Romano ing barbarities there, it is by now pretty reers, send government officials to prison, Prodi is our man there.” At the time, Si- clear to Putin & Company that they have and destroy a vast intelligence network gnor Prodi was Italy’s prime minister. little to fear from “world opinion” over that has taken more than a generation to That was immediately before his stint as their Chechen operations. But al-Qaeda? put in place. EU Commission president, which was Since 9/11, it has become the new global menace, supposedly even more dangerous than the old “Evil Empire,” the Soviet Union, ever was. It cer- tainly wouldn’t do to have it widely known that our “partner” against terror, Putin, and his FSB, are joined at the hip with the perpetrators of the 9/11 terrorist attacks. However, as explosive as Litvinenko’s FSB/al- Qaeda charge is, it never caused Putin to suffer any political blowback because the Western press, in gen- eral, never bothered even to report it, let alone inves- tigate it. So, is there pos- sibly another even more compelling reason for Mr. Putin to take the risk of killing a British citizen AP Images (Litvinenko had just re- ceived British citizenship shortly before his death) Another poison victim: Ukrainian President Victor Yushchenko, shown in July and December 2004, before and on British soil? Indeed, it after he was poisoned. Evidence and motive point to the FSB, whose agents met with Yushchenko before he seems there is. became ill and nearly died. THE NEW AMERICAN • JANUARY 22, 2007 21
  • 22. RUSSIA communists, “former com- The Mitrokhin/Guzzanti Commission munists,” socialists, Greens, was interested in what Litvinenko had to Litvinenko’s former KGB boss and trusted and other assorted leftists, say about Prodi and had dispatched one friend, General Anatoly Trofimov, advised has not put an inquiry into of its investigators, Mario Scaramella, to the Prodi-KGB connections meet with him. Litvinenko and Scaramella him not to seek refuge in Italy, since it at the top of its priority list. met on several occasions and Litvinenko was loaded with KGB agents. “Don’t go to It presumably has more im- went to Italy in 2004 to provide testimony Italy,” General Trofimov said, “there are portant business to consider, to the commission. In fact, Mr. Scara- such as regulating the orange mella met with Litvinenko in London on many KGB agents among the politicians: and sugar content of mar- November 1, shortly before Litvinenko’s Romano Prodi is our man there.” malade, and outlawing ho- meeting with the Russians. He reportedly mophobia and xenophobia. had arranged the meeting to bring warning However, in Italy, appar- about, and details of, an assassination plot followed by his return as Italy’s prime ently, the Mitrokhin Commission did take against Litvinenko and Senator Guzzanti. minister in May 2006. the Litvinenko charge seriously. Named Early press reports on the case stated that Litvinenko’s charge regarding Prodi was for ex-KGB archivist Vasili Mitrokhin, Scaramella had been poisoned also, but brought into the open on April 3, 2006, the commission (also referred to as the he was released from University College when Gerard Batten, a British Member of Guzzanti Commission, after its chairman, Hospital apparently unharmed. the European Parliament (MEP), brought Senator Paolo Guzzanti) was launched in There has been speculation in political the matter before the European Parlia- 2002 by the Italian Parliament to investi- and intelligence circles that a particular ment and requested an investigation. Bat- gate Soviet penetration of Italian institu- Italian professor/politician revealed by ten noted that Litvinenko was one of his tions since World War II. This was long Mitrokhin, but referred to only by the constituents and recounted the Litvinenko- overdue, since Italy, which had the larg- KGB code name UCHITEL (“the Teach- Trofimov conversation. General Trofimov est Communist Party of any country in er”), pointed to Prodi, a former professor and his wife were both shot dead in their Western Europe, has included open com- and longtime insider in Italy’s top busi- automobile near their Moscow apartment munists and ex-communists in many of its ness and political echelons. This would in April 2005. top government posts. The current Prodi help explain why Prodi, during his earlier Not surprisingly, the European Parlia- regime is no exception. (See the sidebar stint as prime minister, failed to take any ment, which is loaded with MEPs who are on page 19.) action when British intelligence provid- ed his government with information in 1996 about 261 Italians who had AP Images been operating for decades as agents for the KGB. When British sources publicly released this information in 1999, Prodi claimed not to have been informed about it earlier. However, his defense minister confirmed that he had given the British information to Prodi. Subsequently, when the Mitrokhin Commission began delving into the matter, Prodi and his influential media and political backers went into hyper- drive to stop publication of the report. It was due out in March 2006, but still remains unpublished. More recently, on November 20, just three days be- fore Litvinenko’s death, Prodi fired the chiefs of three of Italy’s intelligence agencies, all of whom would have been important to any investigation of the Mitrokhin information. If Prodi is Moscow’s man, as General Trofimov is alleged to have said, then Russia’s intelligence structures would stop at Prodi: Top Russian agent? Romano Prodi (right), formerly president of the European nothing to protect such a valuable, Commission and now prime minister of Italy, is shown here with Russia’s President Putin long-term investment. ■ at a 2004 EU-Russia conference in Moscow. 22 THE NEW AMERICAN • JANUARY 22, 2007
  • 23. RUSSIA Putin’s New Soviet Economy After a decade of “market reform,” the Russian economy under the presidency of ex-KGB chief Vladimir Putin appears to be returning to its Soviet roots. AP Images Communist influence: Russian president Vladimir Putin (left) meets with oligarch Vladimir Potanin, the “former” communist bureaucrat credited with the now notorious loans-for-shares program that kept Yeltsin in power and created the wealth of the oligarchs. by Dennis Behreandt beauty of the region, and for the smoked is literally and figuratively worlds apart fish. Smoked omul, a fish caught only in from the world of business in Moscow and I t’s not exactly a tourist Mecca on Baikal’s deep, cold waters, is regarded by at the Kremlin. There, the big business that par with the likes of Vail, Colorado, many to be the best smoked fish in the grew in the wake of perestroika and the or California’s wine country or the world. Writing about his trip to Lake Bai- “liberalization” of the Yeltsin years was Grand Canyon, but nevertheless, word is kal for the New Zealand Herald, journalist not the entrepreneurship that marks the getting out about the little Siberian village Jim Eagles admitted to finding omul to be small businessmen of the Siberian frontier, of Listvyan. The tiny village sits on the a tasty treat indeed. “I don’t know about but a predatory corporatism. shores of mighty Lake Baikal, the world’s the best in the world,” he wrote, “but it Russia’s market reforms were supposed deepest freshwater lake and home to 20 sure is delicious, midway between smoked to privatize the majority of the old Soviet percent of the world’s fresh water. There, salmon and snapper, and it goes extremely state-run operations, with all Russians hav- the deep, primeval waters are now bring- well with cold Siberian vodka.” ing the opportunity to buy in. What really ing tourists to Baikal, and hence, to List- It may seem trivial that tourists, and trav- happened was the concentration of owner- vyan. The beauty of the area is not lost on el writers, are now eating smoked omul in ship in the hands of a few wealthy, schem- those who make their homes in the Sibe- Listvyan on the shores of Lake Baikal. In ing, and well-connected insiders who, it rian wilderness. “There are the Alps, the actuality, though, the growth of a tourism now seems, were conveniently placed to Caucasus, the Black Sea … but there’s industry around Lake Baikal reveals that hold Soviet-era enterprises intact until the nothing like Baikal,” Lyudmila Sigayev, a the Russian economy has become mark- day when they could again be nationalized local Baikal resident, told CNN. edly more open to free enterprise than outright or brought under central control. Tourists from around the world are be- was the case under the old Soviet planned Under the regime of Russian president ginning to visit the remote area, both for the economy. Business in Listvyan, however, Vladimir Putin, that day is here. THE NEW AMERICAN • JANUARY 22, 2007 23
  • 24. RUSSIA mer state-run companies. It under Gaidar was Anatoliy Chubais, an- would seem like luck, for other former member of the Soviet Com- The Russian government has not stopped Abramovich and the other munist Party. its efforts to nationalize important oligarchs, of the sort that oc- Under Gaidar and Chubais, the Russian curs when one just happens government began a program of privatiza- industries. Most recently, the Putin to be in the right place at the tion by distributing shares of state-owned government, according to London’s right time — except for the property to ordinary Russian citizens. Guardian newspaper, has forced oil major fact that the creation of the One-time Wall Street Journal correspon- oligarchs took place in Rus- dent Matthew Brzezinski — the nephew Shell “to hand over its controlling stake in sia, where planning has been of Carter administration internationalist the world’s biggest liquefied gas project.” a central part of life since Zbigniew Brzezinski — described the Lenin. In fact, the oligarchs scheme in his book Casino Moscow. Ac- may owe their wealth, in a cording to Brzezinski, under the program Creating the Oligarchs sense, to Lenin, the godfather of commu- “every Russian citizen received a voucher With close-cropped stubble on his chin, nism, who once opened the windows of that could be traded for shares in various marked by hints of gray, a twinkle in his Soviet Communism with his “New Eco- State enterprises.... There were a lot of blue eyes, and a baseball cap on his head, nomic Policy” to allow a semblance of a dogs, but a savvy voucher-holder could Roman Abramovich wouldn’t look out of market economy to fill communist coffers pick up shares in some real jewels — oil place in suburban America. His collection with capitalist cash. companies, aluminum smelters, airlines of mega-yachts and his private Boeing In that sense it is intriguing that the fi- — all valued at ridiculously low prices.” 767, however, might make him stand out nancial schemes of more recent vintage The problem was, most Russians had no just a bit. He can certainly afford the ex- that created the massive wealth of today’s experience with such arrangements and travagance: according to Forbes, only 10 oligarchs were planned and executed by were happy to give them up for small, other people in the world can claim for- former members of the Communist Party. short-term gains. “Most Russians, espe- tunes larger than Abramovich’s. The “reforms” were begun under Yegor cially outside of Moscow,” wrote Brzez- Abramovich, considered to be the 11th Gaidar, who served as finance minister inski, “had little use for the voucher scrip, richest man in the world, did not come and, briefly, as prime minister under Yelt- which to their inexperienced eyes was just to his money through old-fashioned en- sin. Gaidar was a longtime member of the a piece of paper, and they were only too trepreneurship. Like the other so-called Soviet Communist Party and was editor happy to part with their vouchers for a few oligarchs of the Russian economy, his of the party’s journal Communist, before dollars or a bottle of vodka.” money came as the result of the acquisi- becoming a so-called “liberal” under Yelt- Instead of a broad base of stock hold- tion, at incredible bargain prices, of for- sin. Working on the liberalization project ers among the entire Russian population, Captain of industry: Roman Abramovich (left) is one of the richest men in the world and owns a fleet of super yachts like Pelorus (right). Abramovich made his money through the so-called privatization of Soviet-era businesses. AP Images AP Images 24 THE NEW AMERICAN • JANUARY 22, 2007
  • 25. the program instead led to a of repaying the debt.” concentration of ownership Among the oligarchs in the hands of a few “inves- thus enriched were Boris tors.” This privatization effort Berezovsky and his protégé became the first step in the Roman Abramovich, both creation of what at the time of whom wound up with appeared to be Russia’s new controlling stakes in such ruling class. former state-run enterprises The second, and crucial, as Soviet airline Aeroflot step in the privatization pro- and several oil properties cess came a couple of years that were reorganized as later. In 1995 and continuing the energy company Sib- into 1996, the Yeltsin govern- neft. Another of the power- ment was on the ropes, and it ful oligarchs was Mikhail looked like it might be swept Khodorkovsky, a veteran out of office in the upcoming of the Young Communist elections. Yeltsin’s trouble League, who emerged from with voters was also a prom- the loans-for-shares deal ising opportunity for former with Yukos, Russia’s largest communists who were still oil company. Another win- running the economic show ner in the selective priva- in Moscow. One of these was tization of former state- Vladimir Potanin, the bil- run enterprises was Vagit lionaire head of Oneximbank. Alekperov, the former first And Potanin, a former com- deputy of the Soviet Oil & missar, had a plan. Gas Ministry, who used his Potanin had been born into position to create the giant a high-ranking party family energy firm LUKoil. and, after coming of age, duly AP Images took his place in the Kremlin Profits, Purges, and bureaucracy beside his father Privatization’s End in the Soviet Department of Crackdown: Once the richest man in Russia, Mikhail Khodorkovsky was Freed from the stifling ef- Trade, where, trading on his imprisoned for fraud and tax evasion. His company, the oil firm Yukos, was fects of direct state control, family’s standing in the party, subsequently brought back under state control. the newly privatized enti- he grew ever more powerful ties quickly moved to adopt himself. According to Brzezinski, during Potanin who thought up the next scheme Western business practices that attracted the last years of the Soviet state, Potanin for transferring the remaining major state- investment and led to marked improve- “specialized in the procuring of jealously owned businesses in their entirety to a se- ments in performance. This has been par- guarded export licenses.” This was during lect group of bankers. ticularly true regarding the energy sector, the time, according to the private intelli- In 1995, when the shaky and cash- where Sibneft, Yukos, and LUKoil grew to gence firm Stratfor, when the KGB was strapped Yeltsin regime looked like it might become major players, both in Russia and directed to hide Soviet assets abroad. “The lose in the upcoming elections, Potanin met internationally. scale of the KGB project was impressive,” with then-Prime Minister (and longtime But once grown strong, these businesses the Stratfor intelligence report says. “From Communist Party member) Viktor Cher- attracted the attention once again of the 1989 to 1991, the KGB first chief director- nomyrdin and Chubais to convince them Russian state, now under the presidency ate funneled at least 60 metric tons of gold, of the necessity of a bold plan. According of Vladimir Putin. The new president was 150 metric tons of silver, 8 metric tons of to Brzezinski, “Potanin proposed forming eager to reassert the old prerogatives of the platinum, and from $15 to $50 billion in a consortium of Russia’s biggest private state. In 1999, Putin published his Millen- hard currency abroad, according to Rus- banks to lend the Treasury the money that nium Manifesto, wherein he expounded sian investigators.” the Yeltsin machine required to get itself on Russian greatness and pointed to the There’s no direct proof that Potanin reelected. In return, the Kremlin would put importance of state power in Russian was involved, but he was well placed to up as collateral shares in Russia’s biggest life. “For Russians a strong state is not an have had a hand in that scheme. Shortly and best State enterprises. These shares, it anomaly which should be got rid of,” Putin after, in 1992, he founded his Onexim- was agreed, would be worth far more — as insisted in his Manifesto. “Quite the con- bank, largely on the ashes of the Ministry much as a hundred times more — than the trary, they see it as a source and guaran- of Trade. Interestingly enough, then, it value of the loans, and the Kremlin could tor of order and initiator and main driving was the well-connected Kremlin insider simply turn them over to the banks instead force of any change.” This insistence is the THE NEW AMERICAN • JANUARY 22, 2007 25
  • 26. RUSSIA exile, his protégé Abramovich have hit home with another oligarch, stepped in to take full control Roman Abramovich. Though he retains The centralization of the Russian of Sibneft and other firms. The control of other prominent Russian firms economy under Putin should not come as removal of the mercurial Ber- like steel maker Evraz, currently in a bid ezovsky would prove to make to take over the American firm Oregon a surprise. The “liberalization” efforts it much easier for control of Steel, Abramovich padded his personal were never intended to be permanent. the important companies he bottom line by selling Sibneft to the Rus- formerly owned to be trans- sian government-owned Gazprom. The They were instead outgrowths of ferred back to the Kremlin at Sydney Morning Herald, in its report on Gorbachev’s ruse known as perestroika. a later date. the 2005 sale valued at more than $13 bil- The next oligarch to fall lion, observed: “The deal … effectively was Mikhail Khodorkovsky, nationalises Sibneft at a time when global “essence of Putin’s neo-Sovietism,” ac- the billionaire owner of oil firm Yukos. supply remains tight.” cording to Gavin Slade, a political science At its height, Khodorkovsky’s Yukos was This wasn’t the first time that Abramo- scholar affiliated with the School of Rus- producing one out of every five barrels of vich played a prominent role in helping sian and Asian Studies at Moscow State Russian oil and the company was valued the Kremlin regain control of ostensibly University. Under Putin’s neo-Sovietism, at some $27 billion. For a time, this made private businesses. He was also instru- the new Russian government began work- Khodorkovsky the richest man in Russia. mental in helping Putin recover ORT, the ing to bring privatized companies back But, charged with tax evasion and fraud, television station owned originally by Ber- under government control. the FSB (the renamed KGB) arrested ezovsky. According to a 2001 CNN report, According to Prospect, a British maga- Khodorkovsky in 2003 in a spectacular Russian “business dailies Kommersant and zine, Berezovsky was the kingmaker that paramilitary assault, and he remains im- Vedomosti said Abramovich acted as the put Putin on the throne. In 1999, “Ber- prisoned. His arrest led to the transfer Kremlin’s middleman, buying the [ORT] ezovsky steered the sick, drunken, Yeltsin of Yukos back to the Kremlin in 2004. stock so the government could control it.” into appointing FSB chief Vladimir Putin as “Yukos, once a leader of the move towards The nationalization of ORT has been part prime minister,” Prospect reported. Inter- privatization in Russia, has now been rena- of the Kremlin’s remarkably successful estingly enough, Berezovsky then became tionalized,” correspondent Jeffrey Brown program of consolidating its control of the first oligarch to be purged by Putin. reported on NewsHour with Jim Lehrer on Russian media organs. According to Har- Accused of a variety of crimes, the oli- December 23, 2004. vard International Review senior editor garch fled to England. After Berezovsky’s The renationalization of Yukos must Alex Captain, the Putin government now Newscom Tourism takes off: In post-Soviet Russia, tourism has taken off, with visitors from around the world traveling to Russian destinations, including Lake Baikal. 26 THE NEW AMERICAN • JANUARY 22, 2007
  • 27. “controls over 75 percent of all media and this was indeed the strategy put in As in the forced removal of Shell from companies in Russia.” place by Soviet planners decades ago, then control of the Sakhalin-2 project, this will The Russian government has not stopped this objective was achieved with spectacu- have consequences for both Europe and its efforts to nationalize important indus- lar success in the 1990s, when it became America. The Kremlin already supplies tries. Most recently, the Putin government, common knowledge that the Soviet Union about 40 percent of Europe’s natural gas according to London’s Guardian newspa- had fallen. Acting on that “knowledge,” needs and has just cemented exclusive dis- per, has forced oil major Shell “to hand over Western businesses and governments tribution deals with France and Italy, fur- its controlling stake in the world’s biggest flocked to the opportunities presented by ther strengthening its position in Europe liquefied gas project,” the so-called Sakha- the “new” Russia. Now the KGB, having where it is likely to use its new-found en- lin-2 project that is scheduled to go online played, according to Golitsyn, a central ergy clout for political purposes. in 2008. Shell appears to have been black- role in preparing for and implementing It has, in fact, done this before. Last mailed into relinquishing its controlling in- perestroika, has regained almost complete winter the Kremlin cut natural gas ship- terest to state-run Gazprom. The Guardian control in Russia. According to a study ments to Ukraine and demanded a steep reported on December 20 that Shell “needs by Olga Kryshtanovskaya of the Russian increase in the price Ukrainians paid for a deal to end a long-running campaign by Academy of Sciences, as reported by the gas. According to the BBC, the Ukraini- local ministries over alleged environmen- German magazine Der Spiegel, an incred- ans believed the Russian disruption of gas tal violations which have threatened to halt ible 78 percent of the leaders in Russian supplies was punishment for Ukraine’s the scheme and led to demands for fines government and business have a KGB/ “attempts to become more independent of up to $30bn.” Apparently, the Kremlin FSB background. Consequently, it seems from Moscow and develop stronger ties believes that since Western investors have a foregone conclusion that, under such cir- with the West.” already shelled out $20 billion dollars to cumstances, further nationalization of the There may come a time when the make Sakhalin-2 a reality, they are no lon- Russian economy is imminent. Kremlin can put similar pressure on the ger needed and the whole United States. Already operation can revert to Coming to America: The Russian oil firm LUKoil now owns thousands of gas LUKoil owns over 2,000 state ownership. stations in the United States. gas and service stations in the Northeastern states, AP Images Consequences most of which it acquired The centralization of the after its takeover of Getty Russian economy under Petroleum Marketing in Putin should not come 2000. According to the as a surprise. The “lib- company, those stations eralization” efforts that “generate over two billion culminated in the work of gallons of gasoline sales communist officials Yegor annually.” LUKoil has Gaidar and Anatoliy Chu- not yet been nationalized, bais were never intended and perhaps it won’t be. to be permanent. They But that doesn’t mean the were instead outgrowths of company won’t become Gorbachev’s ruse known an instrument of Krem- as perestroika. According lin policy. According to to high-ranking Soviet de- Forbes, Vagit Alekperov, fector Anatoliy Golitsyn, the former Soviet energy whose predictions about minister who is the chief perestroika, the break- shareholder in LUKoil, up of the Warsaw Pact, “is a noted Putin loyalist and the fall of the Soviet at a time when much of Union have been eerily Russia’s oil and gas indus- accurate, as early as the try is being renationalized late 1950s, “the KGB was under state energy giant assigned a key role in the Gazprom.” It doesn’t take execution of the strategy” much imagination to see that would become known Alekperov as a state asset as perestroika. The objec- in a Russian government tive was “the neutralisa- that presides over an econ- tion and dissolution of omy that is looking more genuine opposition.” and more like the Soviet If Golitsyn is correct, economy of old. ■ TNA • JANUARY 22, 2007 27
  • 28. RUSSIA Silent Suffering in Russia As Russian companies were privatized, usually given to “former communists” who stripped them of valuables, the bulk of Russians received merely empty promises. by Kurt Williamsen ‘‘P eople in Russia were condi- tioned to worry about family problems and the global situation, particularly the struggle for peace, but not about crime, accidents, or the struggle to make a liv- ing,” reported David Sat- ter, a correspondent who covered Russia, in his book Darkness at Dawn. “When these problems began to intrude on them, the reaction was often fear and hysteria. Many people wanted to commit suicide because they were overcome with fear.” According to Satter, AP Images Russians as a people do not handle change very well; they have been Fending for themselves: When the Soviet welfare state imploded in the late ’80s and early ’90s and essentially trained all their lives to ceased to exist, many people, especially pensioners, were forced to become street vendors, selling produce they serve the Soviet State, to grew in their yards. be used as raw material in the building of the state. Service to the state Yaroslavl Heating Equipment Factory, as The delays in paying salaries soon was where they derived both their worth related by Satter, were endemic throughout reached two months, and the factories and well-being. Then in January 1992 Russia. With the fall of the Soviet Union, began to give workers part of their pay post-Soviet reforms thrust them almost Satter wrote, in the form of meals in the factory buf- overnight from a lifestyle of being treated fet. The food was of prison quality, but like valued government mules — given orders and supplies declined sharply, the workers accepted it eagerly, often adequate shelter, guided constantly in their causing production to fall by more bringing it home for their children daily lives, and made reliant on govern- than half. At the same time, hyper- without eating anything themselves. ment as master to care for their daily needs inflation destroyed the life savings After the factory was privatized, — to utter abandonment. They now had to of the workers, causing mass demor- conditions became worse. Part of the fend for themselves in business conditions alization. In some cases the savings production as well as truckloads of that could be likened to a drought. Gov- were as much as 15,000 rubles, which spare parts disappeared. Metal cut- ernment contracts, the lifeblood of many had previously been enough to buy a ting machines were removed and companies, dried up; then predators in the three-room apartment. Within a few sold on the side. Materials were taken form of gangsters or former Soviet officials months, it sufficed to pay for a pair from the construction site of a future moved in and took charge of any remaining of boots.... sports complex and used to build fertile property. Meanwhile, the population As delays in paying salaries three- and four-story dachas for the as a whole lived in the margins in a con- reached one month and began to be factory management. stant daily struggle to subsist and live. regular, many workers started to raise By mid-1994, malnutrition and fi- The problems faced by the workers at the their own food.... nancial uncertainty had led to deep 28 THE NEW AMERICAN • JANUARY 22, 2007
  • 29. ior, such as a national love of alcohol — namely vodka — rampant drug use, and in- volvement in the sex trades. Suicides climbed dramati- cally, “from 26,796 in 1988 to 46,016 in 1993.” The death rate among working- age adults was also exacer- bated by other causes: “In 1992-1996 there were three million work-related acci- dents, 63,500 of them fatal.” Adding to the death toll were those deaths caused by alco- Decrepit infrastructure: Housing in Russia, like so holism. In her book Betrayal much else, is often run-down and overburdened. Many Russians still live in communal apartments, of Trust, Laurie Garrett, a where entire families occupy one room, sharing a journalist covering medically kitchen, toilet, and bath with as many as 20 or 30 related issues, states: “After AP Images other people. the fall of the USSR per cap- ita consumption jumped by 600 percent and incidences social crisis. Families broke up as over their apartments, and then killed of alcohol-related deaths followed suit. men found it impossible to support them,” Satter reported. Government figures from 1995 showed a their children. Workers who became “In 1993 there were 45,060 murders rate approaching 500 per 100,000, in con- ill could not afford medical care and in Russia compared with 26,254 in the trast to an American alcohol-associated died prematurely. These were the first United States [Russia’s population is just death rate in 1995 of just 77.” suicides. under half of that of the United States at She elaborated: “It’s not just that con- about 142 million], and the Russian figure sumption is high, although it is … ; it’s the In factories throughout the country, work- did not include an estimated 22,000 per- way they consume. It’s chug-a-lug vodka ers went for months without pay as ruth- sons who disappeared or the many Rus- drinking that starts at the office during the less plant managers skimmed every avail- sian murder victims whose deaths were morning coffee break and goes right into able dollar and exploited every means of disguised as accidents.” the nighttime.” Individually, they drink putting as much money as possible in their Russians, by and large, cannot count on massive amounts: “In the fall of 1998 own pockets. The workers usually didn’t police to come to their aid. Satter explains Russia’s President Yeltsin announced that quit their jobs because they did occasion- that the police still have the Soviet mental- Russia’s population-wide average had ally get some pay, and something was bet- ity that it is their job to work against citi- reached more than 25 liters of pure ethanol ter than nothing. Although, technically, zens, not to protect and serve them. Police equivalent a year. Adjusting for age, that boards of directors controlled the newly routinely arrest people on bogus charges implied that Russian adults were — on av- privatized business entities, the boards had with the intention of letting them go in re- erage — consuming an astonishing three no way to enforce their will, and besides, turn for a bribe. Dereliction of duty is so bottles of high-proof vodka a week.” anyone who caused too much trouble rampant that even murders often go large- Going hand in hand with mass alco- could simply be killed. ly uninvestigated. The problem is made holism was rampant drug use, as people For a joke, a reporter put an ad in a worse, according to Satter, because most tried to blot out the reality of their lives. newspaper offering himself as a contract of the competent investigators in post-So- A survey of Moscow’s colleges indicated killer; he received a steady stream of calls viet Russia resigned from the police and that “a startling 100 percent of the stu- to enlist his services. Killing was common- started their own security companies. dents have tried drugs; all drank hard li- place, and might come about for almost At the same time, people any reason — but usually avarice. Accord- wishing to open businesses in ing to Satter “in the years 1992-1997 in Russia find that they are usu- According to Satter, Russians as a people Moscow alone, 20,000 people sold their ally obligated to purchase a do not handle change very well; they have housing and then disappeared.... A signifi- “roof” — gang “protection.” cant percentage, if not the vast majority, of By and large, the people been trained all their lives to serve the these people were believed to have been are helpless, and their help- Soviet State, to be used as raw material murdered for their apartments.... Apart- lessness fueled, and in return ment gangs formed in cities all over the was fueled by, suicide and in the building of the state. country.” They forced residents “to sign other self-destructive behav- THE NEW AMERICAN • JANUARY 22, 2007 29
  • 30. RUSSIA quor, and half of them said that they use source, transit, and destination country for from The World Factbook showed that the heroin, other narcotics, or amphetamines men, women, and children trafficked for population rate of Russia (which includes regularly.... The young Muscovites said various purposes; it remains a significant deaths, births, and migration) is now de- they saw no other alternative — no other source of women trafficked to over 50 clining by 0.37 percent a year — or by way to face each day — except inebriated countries for commercial sexual exploita- about a half million a year. This despite or stoned.” Throughout Russia “drug use tion.” Women trafficked from Russia fol- the fact that Russia is experiencing a net estimates from the [Russian] Ministry of low the promise of jobs. When they reach migration gain as Russians return from Interior say there are about two million a destination country, traffickers take their former Soviet satellite countries and Chi- IV drug users.” passports and money and then gang rape nese move into Siberia to escape China’s The consequences of the breakdown in or beat them to force the traffickers’ will restrictive one-child law. societal norms and the absence of personal on them. “Internal trafficking remains a Life in Russia has been grim for much responsibility led parents to “child abuse problem in Russia with women trafficked of the citizenry. In April of 2005, accord- and abandonment” and women and chil- from rural areas to urban centers for com- ing to Pravda.Ru, average monthly earn- dren to become involved, voluntarily and mercial sexual exploitation … ; debt bond- ings reached an all-time high of $303 per involuntarily, in the sex trade. “In 1997 the age is common among trafficking victims, month — a wage that is above the offi- Moscow Human Rights Research Center and child sex tourism remains a concern.” cial poverty line, but “is very close to a estimated there were a million homeless Rampant sex and drug use have led subsistence wage.” Yet, even with this low children in Russia; the government said to widespread disease. “As of the end of poverty line, a 2004 estimate in The World 700,000. No one knew how many more December 1997, 7 percent of the Russian Factbook placed 17.8 percent of the popu- children had parents in homes but were left military tested positive for HIV infection. lation below the poverty line. largely to survive on their own because of That was roughly 105,000 men,” accord- The relative poverty of the populace of their parents’ alcoholism,” Garrett related. ing to Garrett. Making problems worse are Russia leaves the people, who have been Women and girls often turned to pros- large numbers of cases of hepatitis and trained to believe newspapers and other titution to support themselves. According drug-resistant tuberculosis (the latter from public media, susceptible to the get-rich- to Garrett, prostitution for girls is such improper use of medications society-wide, quick schemes and bank fraud that are a widely considered option that “some and cramped conditions and poor health- commonplace. And the constant difficul- seven- and eight-year-olds even worked care in prisons). ties faced by the masses aren’t likely to during school recesses doing what they All told, “in the period 1992-1995, abate soon. Russia’s infrastructure is di- called ‘hot sex’ — quickies performed deaths exceeded births by 2 million, a lapidated, inflation remains high, and, as with adult men behind food kiosks for demographic catastrophe not experienced The World Factbook says, “Most funda- about two dollars.” Other women were in peacetime except during the famine of mentally, Russia has made little progress forced into sex-slave operations. Accord- 1932-33 and the Stalinist terror of 1937- in building the rule of law, the bedrock of ing to The World Factbook: “Russia is a 38,” asserted Satter. A 2006 estimate a modern market economy.” ■ AP Images Banks that bilk: Because Russia’s inflation has been so high and Russians have been desperate not to lose their savings, they have been easily conned into fraudulent investments and pyramid schemes. Here Russian special forces troops push aside protestors in a tent city in Moscow in 2006, who are there to protest countrywide scams that have left as many as 50,000 people completely destitute. 30
  • 31. BOOK REVIEW Business vs. Government In his book The Big Ripoff, Timothy Carney blows away the deception that Big Business and the government are adversaries and that the government defends the average citizen. by Brian Farmer Washington Times, American Spectator, and numerous other The Big Ripoff: How Big Business and newspapers, magazines, and Big Government Steal Your Money, by websites. Timothy P. Carney, Hoboken, New Jersey: Veteran political reporter John Wiley & Sons, Inc., 2006, 285 pages, Bob Novak described Mr. hardcover, $24.95. (For ordering informa- Carney as “the best political tion, see the ad on the inside back cover.) reporter among the outstand- ing young men and women I t is probably safe to say that the ma- who worked for me” over the jority of Americans accept the notion past 25 years. So impressed that ours is a free-enterprise economy, is Bob Novak by the revela- based on free-market capitalism. Probably tions in The Big Ripoff that all of us learned in U.S. history class that he feels that Tim Carney President Theodore Roosevelt led the pro- should be put in the same gressive campaign against the so-called category as Upton Sinclair, “robber barons” of Big Business and pro- whose book The Jungle al- moted the passage of federal anti-trust leg- legedly revealed the scan- islation during the early years of the 20th dalous goings-on within the century. We were told that this legislation meatpacking industry more was necessary in order to prevent the de- than a century ago. velopment and perpetuation of monopoly However, unlike Upton capitalism and all of the evils that would Sinclair, Tim Carney is no grow from it. As a result, the average socialist muckraker, for this American leaves school generally believ- book is not a novel, but an ing that laissez-faire capitalism needs to investigative report that re- be restrained and that a benevolent govern- veals a dirty secret of Amer- ment is working to ensure that consumers, ican politics, namely, how Big Business corporate documents, and personal inter- taxpayers, and small entrepreneurs are not works with both Republican and Demo- views, what Tim Carney reports are the so- being exploited by Big Business. cratic politicians to erode the freedom bering facts that politicians and large cor- In his book The Big Ripoff, Timothy and economic well-being of consumers, porations would prefer to keep from public Carney makes a very convincing argument taxpayers, and small businesses. While view. He begins by demonstrating how the that nothing could be further from the some critics may charge Mr. Carney with conventional wisdom that the Republicans truth. As the subtitle suggests, the author bias, given his background working for the are the party of the rich and the Democrats blows away the deception that Big Busi- Competitive Enterprise Institute, a non- are the party of the little guy is a myth. ness and the government are in opposition profit, anti-regulation group, the author Carney’s research reveals that the rich- and that the government is on the side of correctly asserts at the outset, “My argu- est Americans, people such as billionaire the average citizen. He accomplishes this ments and reporting deserve to be consid- George Soros, are the core of the Demo- by way of extensive documentation and ered on their own merits, even if you have cratic Party. The top four contributors to persuasive examples. some skepticism about the organizations the 2004 election, all giving more that $10 Although this is Tim Carney’s first book, that have funded my research.” million, gave exclusively to Democrats. he possesses an impressive background as Also, in that same election year, the rich- a freelance investigative reporter, having What You Aren’t Supposed to Know est counties in the United States voted for worked as a reporter at Human Events Because the information presented in The Democratic Party candidate John Kerry; and written for the Wall Street Journal, Big Ripoff came from government sources, and Senator Kerry, along with Senators 31
  • 32. BOOK REVIEW new roads would make any fu- ceptive tax (monetary inflation) that went ture housing developments more unrecognized by voters, and the banking Because the information presented in easily accessible and thereby system was given the privilege of creat- The Big Ripoff came from government drive up the prospective values ing money from nothing (by being able to of property and new housing. legally loan more money than they had in sources, corporate documents, and The big businesses that finan- cash reserves) and then charging interest on personal interviews, what Tim Carney cially promoted the tax increase it. (The full story is related in The Creature reports are the sobering facts that knew that they were going to get From Jekyll Island, by G. Edward Griffin, their money back. Sure enough, which, like The Big Ripoff, is also available politicians and large corporations after the tax hike went through, from American Opinion Book Services.) would prefer to keep from public view. big construction companies got A more significant flaw in the book lucrative government contracts is that, after painstakingly presenting his for road building, big real estate case, Tim Carney offers the reader no con- Graham, Kohl, Kennedy, and Rockefeller developers got the roads that made their crete plan to address the problem. In fact, (all Democrats) are among the wealthiest housing tracts more profitable, and mort- in an interview with The American Specta- members of that legislative body. In the gage brokers were able to get higher fees tor, Mr. Carney glibly stated, “The chance 2000 election, 56 percent of voters identi- on the sales of higher-priced houses. The of changing things for the better? It’s pret- fied as upper class voted for Democratic end result was that all Virginia residents ty low. I wrote this book and articulated Party candidate Al Gore. were forced to subsidize what amounted to the problem, but you’ll notice I don’t too The Big Ripoff goes on to provide a corporate welfare for a few big businesses much [go into] prescribing solutions. As brief but sweeping history of Big Busi- in a small area of northern Virginia. a conservative, I am wary of ‘solutions.’ ” ness in America, and shows how it is also Apparently, Mr. Carney believes that he a history of Big Government, particularly A Few Flaws has done his part by bringing the problem over the past 100 years. That is followed The various examples the author chose to the attention of the American public by chapter after chapter of specific exam- to support his thesis are from fairly re- and that, if enough people read his book, ples showing how government subsidies, cent history, apparently so that the reader voters will stop believing that government regulation, and eminent domain are used can more easily relate to them. Unfortu- can solve our problems, push to limit the to support uncompetitive industries, stifle nately, by not going back further in time, scope of the government, and then bring competition, and take private land, not for Mr. Carney overlooks arguably the most political pressure to bear for change. public use, but for private development. significant example of collusion between Nevertheless, the book is worth a read by One such chapter, entitled “You Get Taxed, Big Business and Big Government in our anyone who wants to know how the system They Get Rich,” examines how former country’s history: the creation of the Fed- really works. The power of Tim Carney’s Virginia Governor Mark Warner pushed eral Reserve System. presentation far outweighs any weaknesses through the largest sales tax increase in The plan to create the Fed, the outcome that The Big Ripoff may have. ■ his state’s history during 2004. Warner’s of a secret meeting be- effort was helped by the state’s largest tween Wall Street bank- real estate developers, mortgage brokers, ers and federal govern- and construction companies, who actually ment officials in 1910, spent seven million dollars lobbying for was enacted into law higher taxes! This seems counterintuitive, in 1913. The bottom until one looks a little deeper. line of the plan was Because the expanding federal govern- that the politicians ment drew hordes of government employ- and the big banks ees to the District of Columbia over the entered into a past few decades, housing costs skyrock- partnership in eted within the District, making housing which Con- increasingly unaffordable for many new- gress received comers. As a result, outlying areas were access to growing, which caused increasing traffic u n l i m i t e d congestion in the area of Virginia around funding and Washington, D.C. Real estate developers could initi- desperately wanted new roads because ate a de- 32 THE NEW AMERICAN • JANUARY 22, 2007
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  • 35. THE GOODNESS OF AMERICA The True Spirit of Giving Another generous individual in this ing contractors, and individuals. Like many others, Nathan Burditt, a se- story is Memorial junior Samantha Allard, The Capps are moved by the generosity nior at Memorial High School in Man- who works at a store called Candy King- the community has shown to their family. chester, New Hampshire, got swept up in dom. Samantha met Stephanie when the “The outpouring of human kindness just the shopping frenzy last November. He girl came in as a customer. Learning about renewed our spirit,” Kerry’s mother-in-law waited 34 hours outside a Target store in her illness, Samantha volunteered to take told reporters. suburban Hooksett to be among the first to charge of publicity for the fundraiser and buy a Sony PlayStation 3 electronic game to help obtain prizes to raffle off. machine. But his persistence paid off, it School for Home-schoolers seemed, as he actually was able to pur- It may sound like an oxymoron to have a chase two of the $600 PlayStations. Community Helps Victim school for home-schoolers, but an Elders- After giving one of the devices to his On a night in December 2005, Kerry burg, Maryland, home-schooling mother mother to pay off a debt, Nathan returned Capps was driving to her grandparents’ has started just such an institution. Cath- to school on the Monday after his shop- house in Fernley, Nevada, when her truck erine Milstead, a mother of five, enrolled ping spree and told his civics and history rolled over. The accident broke her neck her oldest daughter in an ecumenical teacher, Christine Monahan, about his suc- and left her a paraplegic. Mrs. Capps spent Christian home-school program when her cess. When his teacher learned that he had nine months in hospitals recovering from youngest daughter was a baby. When the acquired two PlayStation 3s, she jokingly her accident, much of that time in Craig school went out of business in 2001, Mrs. suggested that he donate one to a fundrais- Hospital in Englewood, Colorado, which Milstead began a new ecumenical school ing raffle she was organizing to benefit a specializes in spinal cord injuries. Perhaps called Christiana Homeschool Academy. local family named Hudon. The Hudons the hardest part of her ordeal was being The school started with 10 families who had two teenagers with serious illnesses: away from her husband, Harley. met at Emmanuel Baptist Church in Finks- 15-year-old Stephanie was recovering from “I missed my buddy,” she told the Fal- burg. “I wanted them to live in an atmo- bone cancer in her right arm, and her 18- lon, Nevada, Lahontan Valley News. sphere of respect and one that loves and year-old brother Kevin had recently been The Capps’ ordeal was made much eas- honors God as the creator,” Milstead told diagnosed with Hodgkin’s lymphoma. ier by the generosity of others, however. the Carroll County Times. “I was just floored,” Monahan told the Both Harley and Kerry received sick-leave As more families learned about the Manchester Union Leader about her reac- time donated by their co-workers. Kerry school via e-mails, ads posted at church- tion when she learned about the Hudons’ had worked for the Farm Service Agency es, an open house, and word of mouth, misfortunes. “I couldn’t believe this fam- for less than a year before her accident, the school grew, and in 2004, it moved to ily had to go through this again. These are but she received a paycheck the entire time Westminster Church of God. The school’s the nicest kids. She and her brother — you she was hospitalized thanks to the gener- two-day-a-week program provides struc- wouldn’t even want them to have a bad osity of FSA employees across the coun- ture for and supplements the at-home day, let alone cancer.” try. Harley’s co-workers were also gener- teaching of 140 home-school students. Though the challenge had been thrown ous in donating their sick-leave time, so The parents are encouraged to take part out in jest, Nathan told his teacher he that he could frequently visit Kerry in the in their children’s education. “The moms would consider it. Not long afterwards hospital. have so much more input than moms in a Monahan introduced him to Stephanie. Harley’s co-workers also discovered a public school,” said Mrs. Milstead. “I didn’t say anything about her situa- community service project sponsored by Christiana Homeschool Academy pro- tion,” said the teacher. “I just let him know the Churchill County High School con- vides a classical curriculum, revolving who she was. He came back two classes struction class, and provided him with an around the study of logic and the Great later and said, ‘You can have it.’ ” application for it. Harley turned in the ap- Books. Nathan’s PlayStation will be added to plication two days before the deadline, and “It teaches [the students] to think,” many other articles donated to the raffle not long afterwards received a phone call the school’s assistant administrator, Tina to benefit the Hudon family. from instructor Louie Mori, telling him Dubyoski, a mother of eight, told the The young man’s generosity was very the application was approved. The class Times. “They’re learning to ask ques- likely prompted by his own brush with remodeled the Capps’ home to make it tions and to get to the bottom of the issues serious illness. “I’ve been through tough wheelchair accessible. they’re studying.” While the school does times,” he told the Union Leader. “I’ve Mori’s high-school class provided the not have a religion class, the day begins seen what cancer can do to families.” His labor for the Capps’ home renovation proj- with devotions, and God is woven into the teacher told the newspaper that Nathan had ect, and the townspeople responded gener- Christ-centered curriculum. heart surgery last summer, observing: “I ously to Mori’s requests for donations of “We all share the same values,” Dubyo- think he had one of those moments where materials or time. The Capps received do- ski said. ■ he questioned what’s important in life.” nations from local hardware stores, build- — WARREN MASS THE NEW AMERICAN • JANUARY 22, 2007 35
  • 36. HISTORY— PAST AND PERSPECTIVE AP Images U.S.S.R. founder and former commander of the Soviet Army Leon Trotsky, a Bolshevik revolutionary and Marxist intellectual Neoconservatism’s Deadly Influence A look at the roots of neoconservatism and the reasons why this deadly movement must be rejected in favor of the true conservatism as envisioned by our Founders. by John F. McManus respects from the conservatism of the didly presented the movement’s attitude Republican party. We … accepted the in a 1989 article appearing in Kristol’s A neoconservative is a liberal who New Deal in principle, and had little journal, The National Interest. Boldly has been mugged by reality. affection for the kind of isolation- calling for the integration of the United — Irving Kristol ism that then permeated American States, Europe, and Japan, he yearned for a conservatism. “super-sovereign” state that would be “ec- T he above definition has joyfully and onomically, culturally, and politically he- repeatedly been cited by many de- There you have it: neoconservatism’s most gemonic in the world.” Not satisfied with fenders of neoconservatism. They prominent adherent wants it to be linked such a novel creation, he further urged a consider their branch of political thought to Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s New Deal “new universalism [which] would require a benign movement even though its clout socialism and, because of its rejection of the conscious depreciation not only of has been recognized as dominant over the “isolationism,” to be further identified as American sovereignty but of the notion Bush administration. Kristol likely hopes a champion of meddling in the affairs of of sovereignty in general.” And he added: that everyone who learns of his quip will other nations. The opposite of isolation- “This is not as outrageous as it sounds.” emit a slight chuckle and remain con- ism, of course, is interventionism, a tactic Maybe not to a neoconservative, but a real vinced that neoconservatism is no threat favored by all neoconservatives. Earlier, conservative and especially a constitution- to the nation. in 1983, Kristol claimed that “a conser- alist wouldn’t hesitate for a moment in la- But Irving Kristol, who has willingly vative welfare state is perfectly consistent beling such ideas “outrageous.” accepted the title of “Godfather of Neo- with the neoconservative perspective.” conservatism,” earlier produced a more Old-line conservatives would justly label Neoconservatism’s Roots incisive definition of the movement he the phrase “conservative welfare state” a During the 1960s and into the 1970s, the helped to create. In his 1995 book Neo- classic oxymoron. By 1993, in a piece he “small but talented and articulate group” conservatism: the Autobiography of an authored for the Wall Street Journal, the Kristol haughtily described sought a new Idea, he wrote: Godfather lauded Social Security, Medi- home for its ideology. Leftists to the core, care, food stamps, and Medicaid, even a most were followers of Leon Trotsky, the It describes the erosion of liberal faith cash allowance for the children of unwed revolutionary communist leader who was among a relatively small but talented mothers. Virtually any socialist program expelled from Russia following a power and articulate group … (which grad- can count on support from the neoconser- struggle with Stalin in the 1920s. They ually gained more recruits) toward vative camp. didn’t like Stalin, but they did like the style a more conservative point of view: As for interventionist meddling, neo- of communism advocated by Trotsky. In conservative but different in certain conservative Charles Krauthammer can- his 1995 book Neoconservatism, Kristol 36 THE NEW AMERICAN • JANUARY 22, 2007
  • 37. proudly stated, “I regard myself as lucky to have been a young Trotskyite and I have not a single bitter memory.” As students of the communist movement well know, Trotsky broke with Stalin in 1927 merely over which tactics would best succeed in achieving the world domination each sought. Run out of Russia by his former partner in monstrous crime, Trotsky ended up in Mexico, never renounced his desire to communize or so- cialize the world, and went to his Maker when one of Stalin’s henchmen plunged an axe into his skull in 1940. The Trotsky link provides a key to un- derstanding neoconservatives. Writing in 1995 in the CFR journal Foreign Affairs The countercultural excesses of the New Left during the 1972 Democratic candidacy of Sen. about John Erhman’s The Rise of Neocon- George McGovern (center) encouraged neoconservatism’s godfather and others to move to AP Images servatism, reviewer John Judis confirmed the GOP. Pictured at McGovern’s right during a campaign stop in Little Rock, Arkansas, is a that “the other important influence on neo- youthful campaign worker named Bill Clinton. conservatives was the legacy of Trotsky.... Many of the founders of neoconservatism anti-communist GOP conservatives who controls, and the use of America’s military including The Public Interest founder Irving seemed oblivious to the fact they were under UN auspices to build George H.W. Kristol … were either members of or close welcoming socialists and internationalists Bush’s “new world order.” (Though Bush to the Trotskyite left in the late 1930s and into their midst. never defined the term “new world order,” early 1940s.” Other important early lead- Neocons didn’t exert much influence it has long been known to mean socialism ers of the movement included Commentary during the Ford- and Carter-led 1970s, al- and world government, the cardinal tenets Editor Norman Podhoretz, his wife Midge though many more moved into the GOP. of neoconservatism.) Newly identifiable Decter, Ben Wattenberg, Edward Luttwak, They found they had a good friend in Ron- neocons in the first Bush administration Elliott Abrams, Carl Gershman, Michael ald Reagan when he courted them during included Defense Department leaders Ledeen, and Nathan Glazer. Among later his 1980 campaign and then gave several Dick Cheney, Paul Wolfowitz, and Rich- adherents could be found Michael Novak, of them administration posts when he tri- ard Perle. Delighted to be in charge of the William Bennett, Jeane Kirkpatrick, Daniel umphed. Long on pleasing rhetoric but world’s only remaining superpower, they Moynihan, Wall Street Journal editorialist short on comparable performance, Rea- set out to use America’s armed might to Robert Bartley, and Kristol’s son William, gan named Jeane Kirkpatrick ambassador force their brand of “democracy” on the who currently presides over The Weekly to the UN, and Richard Perle and Elliott world. Standard. Abrams were given posts in the Defense Buckley’s little-known preference for Many of the early neocons were Demo- Department. To a man, neocons joined the neocon agenda, both its foreign and crats. But in 1972, they were repulsed by Kristol in praising Reagan for being “the domestic policy elements, deserves men- the Democratic candidacy of George Mc- first Republican president to pay tribute to tion. In 1952, while he was serving in the Govern because of his isolationism and his Franklin D. Roosevelt.” CIA in what he later termed a “deep cover” embrace of the countercultural excesses assignment in Mexico, the widely accepted of the New Left (drugs, free love, radical More Neocon Successes leader of American conservatism wrote in feminism, homosexuality, etc.). What they No review of the rise of neoconservative Commonweal magazine of the need for saw propelled the early neocons to seek a prominence is complete without noting the “Big Government for the duration,” and for new home in the Republican Party. Irving role played by William F. Buck- Kristol explained that the South Dakota ley in bringing it about. In 1991, senator’s strident opposition to the Viet- Buckley sponsored an invitation- In a 1996 edition of The Essential nam War and willing acceptance of the only, three-day conference for two Neoconservative Reader, editor Mark New Left’s attack on traditional values dozen conservative Republicans. “signified that the Democratic Party was Enthusiastically described by Kris- Gerson jubilantly observed, “The not hospitable to any degree of neoconser- tol, the event saw attendees arrive neoconservatives have so changed vatism.” He wrote that he and a few others as conservatives first, but “by the arrived at the “obvious conclusion that we end of the meeting, a significant re- conservatism that what we now would have to try to find a home in the versal had occurred.... Most were identify as conservatism is largely Republican party.” Find a home they did! Republicans first and conservatives And they were giddily accepted, not only second.” They would now accept what was once neoconservatism.” by liberal Republicans but also by many increased taxation, more federal THE NEW AMERICAN • JANUARY 22, 2007 37
  • 38. HISTORY— PAST AND PERSPECTIVE “large armies and air forces, atomic energy, central intelligence, war production boards and the attendant centralization of power in Washington — even with Truman at the reins of it all.” Even before Irving Kristol, Norman Podhoretz, and other neocon lu- minaries, and even before anyone had even heard the term neoconservative, Buckley was promoting its agenda. More than any other individual, Buckley succeeded dur- ing 50 years of clever duplicity in taking real conservatives away from their roots and into the grasp of the neocons.* In a 1996 edition of The Essential Neo- conservative Reader, editor Mark Gerson jubilantly observed, “The neoconserva- tives have so changed conservatism that what we now identify as conservatism is largely what was once neoconservatism. Pied piper: National Review founder William F. Buckley led conservatives astray to a AP Images And in so doing, they have defined the thinly disguised liberal/internationalist ideology now known as neoconservatism. He is shown here when he ran for mayor of New York City in 1965. way vast numbers of Americans view the economy, their polity, and their society.” In that same year, veteran conservative eign aid, NAFTA, GATT (which became foreign policy. Instead, it represents columnist Sam Francis observed: the WTO), the Mexican bailout, the Ex- big-government welfare at home and port-Import Bank, the use of U.S. mili- a program of using our military might As the Cold War wound down, “ex- tary force to “democratize” the world, the to spread their version of American porting democracy” and opposing United Nations, and whatever else would values throughout the world. “isolationism” became the major take America away from limited govern- neoconservative foreign policy goals, ment and non-intervention. His vaunted In his speech, Paul condemned American reflected in their almost universal “Contract with America” was largely in- Enterprise leader Michael Ledeen’s 1999 support for NAFTA, the World Trade consequential fluff that kept the GOP from characterization of the attack on Pearl Organization, and United Nations relying on the Constitution. Buckley and Harbor as a “lucky” event that led our “peacekeeping” missions. the neoconservatives were delighted, and nation away from neutrality. Ledeen had the proud owner of National Review sa- actually longed for another such event Francis and Gerson, holders of complete- luted Gingrich as a “greatly gifted” leader. that could be used to entangle our nation ly contradictory views about the neocon There was little objection from the Clinton in more overseas adventures. Paul also takeover, were nevertheless in solid agree- White House. pointed to the Project for the New Amer- ment about its success. A steady stream of In 2003, one Republican congress- ican Century’s hope expressed in 2000 neocon policy began flowing from such man who has never been swept into the for “a Pearl Harbor event” that he said Washington-based think tanks as the Com- neoconservative camp addressed his col- “would galvanize the American people mittee on the Present Danger, American leagues in a speech entitled “Neoconned.” to support their ambitious plans to ensure Enterprise Institute, Project for the New Dr. Ron Paul noted that replacing the Clin- political and economic domination of the American Century, the National Endow- ton Democrats with the George W. Bush world.” ment for Democracy, and more. Republicans “has not made a difference.” Paul never accused neocons of support When the 1994 elections produced huge He attributed the lack of change to neo- for or knowledge of the 9/11 event, but he Republican victories, Irving Kristol con- conservatives who had “diligently worked stated very clearly that it has been used “to sidered the stunning GOP success a neo- their way into positions of power and promote an agenda that strict constitution- con triumph. He knew, as many others did influence.” Among the modern-day neo- alists and devotees of the Founders of this not, that GOP leader Newt Gingrich would cons he named were Richard Perle, Elliott nation find appalling.” be his ally. The Georgia Republican who Abrams, William Kristol, Michael Ledeen, After listing 17 neocon beliefs, each of was to become House Speaker had backed James Woolsey, Bill Bennett, Frank Gaff- which he rejects, the Texas congressman federal aid to education, land controls, for- ney, Dick Cheney, and Donald Rumsfeld. urged that those responsible for fastening The redoubtable Texan then summed up neoconservatism on America must be “ex- * See John F. McManus’ book William F. Buckley, the problem facing our nation: posed” and “their philosophy of pervasive Jr.: Pied Piper for the Establishment for the history government intrusion rejected.” Count of why Buckley became the favorite of liberals and Neoconservatism is not the phi- this author and this magazine in solid neocons. losophy of free markets and a wise agreement. ■ 38 THE NEW AMERICAN • JANUARY 22, 2007
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  • 41. “... the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.” EXERCISING THE RIGHT Something Fishy and killed an intruder. In one of the other released, and taken into police custody. “A 71-year-old fish seller about to deposit cases, the intruder also had a long criminal In a bit of odd coincidence, Maples later nearly $30,000 from his business was history. In the other, a schizophrenic man learned that Pruitt is his wife’s second jumped yesterday outside a Prince’s Bay broke into a home. cousin. During questioning, Pruitt identi- bank by ... three bandits, who fled for their fied two accomplices: Steven Hurd, 26, lives with half his cash as he fired several and Kari Breeding, 24. shots at them,” reported the Staten Island Really Wrong House Advance. This December 27 robbery has A Cloverdale, California, couple “were people wondering if the victim was set up, awakened by a man jumping up and down Bird’s-eye View because the robbers must have known who on the hood of their car shortly before 3 An unidentified man was working on the he was, known that he was carrying money a.m.,” reported MercuryNews.com. The air-conditioning system of CiCi’s Pizza in in a deposit bag, and followed him a sub- husband, Gerald Steckmyer, yelled to the Athens, Georgia, on December 19 when he stantial distance — from the Hunts Point man and told him to stop. “The suspect “saw someone trying to break into cars,” Market in the Bronx. then got off the car and walked toward the reported the Athens Banner-Herald. When As the man was walking up to his bank, house.” The seemingly crazed man used a the suspicious individual in the parking lot he was hit from behind and had something five-gallon water bottle to break out a win- tried to open the repairman’s work van, sprayed in his face. Three robbers — men dow and enter the house. Steckmyer shot “the repairman confronted him.” in their twenties — “grabbed between the man just outside his bedroom door. The prospective thief said he thought the $10,000 and $15,000 from the bag” and The Press Democrat reported that this van belonged to his cousin and then asked fled as the victim pulled a licensed pistol December 17 home invasion was obvi- for employment. The repairman pulled a and opened fire. ously meant to be retaliation for a fight the gun, and the scoundrel ran for safety in- It is unknown whether any of the rob- intruder had had at a party earlier in the side a store, where police arrested him. bers were hit. The robbers are still at large. night, but the man had gone to the wrong The victim was treated for an injured fin- house. The house where the intruder had ger at a local hospital and released, appar- been in a fight was nearby. Saving What You Sweat For ently fine. During the incident, the Steckmyers “You have to work too hard out here for dialed 911, and they were still on the somebody to come in off the street and phone with police as the unidentified man try to take what a man’s got,” said Tony Stopped Dead broke in. Draughon, who runs a small store in Fay- There is no question about it; 40-year-old etteville, North Carolina, to WRAL.com. Raymond Gabaldon was a criminal. Ac- When two robbers wearing red banda- cording to the Albuquerque Tribune, he’d Protecting an Investment nas entered Draughon’s store at about previously been arrested for “burglary, On December 27 just after two a.m., Jim two p.m. on December 23, one of them robbery, auto theft, aggravated burglary, Maples woke up to the sound of break- pointed a pistol at Draughon’s head. weapons, drugs,” followed subsequently ing glass in the grocery store he owns. Draughon tried prevent the robber with by jail and probation. He has slept in an apartment in the back the gun from shooting him by telling him Albuquerque, New Mexico, police in- of the store since he bought the place in that he could have the money in the cash dicated there was a warrant out “for his July because, as he told the Bristol Her- drawer — and then he played the robber arrest Dec. 22, for violating his probation ald Courier, he is “not in the best neigh- for a sucker. He dropped the cash from on a previous burglary charge, when … he borhood.” the register on the floor, as if by accident, broke into [a] house on Desert Drive and That night in his Dante, Virginia, grocery and then reached for a pistol behind the got himself shot by the homeowner.” store after hearing the glass break, Maples counter and opened fire. KRQE News 13 reported that Gabal- grabbed a shotgun and investigated. In Draughon hit the gun-toting robber don was “apparently unaware the fright- doing so, he located Jason Pruitt “stand- in the hip, and both young robbers fled. ened homeowner, his wife and two chil- ing over the safe, trying to open it.” Maples They apparently fled through a nearby dren were there.” After Gabaldon was told Pruitt to put his hands where he could woods to a waiting getaway car on the shot, he ran outside and got into a stolen see them, which Pruitt briefly did. other side. When the threesome involved car — likely stolen by Gabaldon back Maples was then forced to fire a warn- went to a local medical center to get aid on December 7, his birthday — and he ing shot as Pruitt turned to face him, and for the wounded robber — later identi- died behind the wheel. As he died, he then he shot Pruitt in the shoulder as Pruitt fied as 17-year-old Mark Tarver — they crashed the car into the victim’s fence came at him. Pruitt “dropped the hammer were arrested. Also in custody were 18- and house. and knife he’d been carrying and fell to year-olds Aaron Carmichael and Lamyer This was the third time in a month that the floor.” Campbell. ■ an Albuquerque homeowner had shot Pruitt was treated at a local hospital, — KURT WILLIAMSEN THE NEW AMERICAN • JANUARY 22, 2007 41
  • 42. Global-warming Alarmists account continued, as published in the Knox- Try to Freeze Out Skeptics ville News Sentinel: ITEM: In the Boston Globe for Decem- “ ‘There is a greater ber 21, 2006, U.S. Representative Marty temptation to ignore in- Meehan (D-Mass.) and Paul Epstein, as- convenient truths, to set sociate director of the Center for Health aside knowledge that and the Global Environment at Harvard might challenge prevail- Medical School, wrote a piece called ing policy,’ said Gore, “Making Noise on Global Warming.” The who was greeted with a pair maintained: “There are few matters standing ovation.” of international importance that could CORRECTION: It is truly have more dire consequences than being astonishing that the silent about the dangers of global warm- warmaholics who por- ing. Rising sea levels, shrinking glaciers, tend worldwide catas- an increase in severe weather, from hurri- trophes around the next canes to heat waves — the effects of global bend, and whose every warming are evident all around us.... De- alarmist warning is trum- spite these troubling signs, government peted by the mass media scientists and experts on climate change and echoed by major have been stopped by President Bush and political spokesmen, administration officials from reporting can pretend they are the their scientific findings on the link between victims of a silencing global warming and human activity.” campaign. The authors concluded: “Instead of si- In fact, in the mat- lencing government climate experts, the ter of global warming, AP Images federal government should take a cue from muzzling and ridiculing states like Massachusetts and become an are generally reserved active leader and partner in efforts to to the skeptical analysts Dr. Michael Oppenheimer, shown above warning about the combat global warming.” who won’t fall into lock threat of global warming on the Florida coastline, is a recipient of ITEM: BBC News reported on October 31, step. Remember it was funding from the environmental lobby. Yet the major media ignore 2006: “The world cannot afford to wait Senators Jay Rockefeller such payments while claiming that “global warming skeptics” before tackling climate change, the UK (D-W.Va.) and Olympia should be ignored because of funding from industry. prime minister has warned. A report by Snowe (R-Maine), both economist Sir Nicholas Stern suggests that global-warming acolytes, who not long al warming. They have a responsibility not global warming could shrink the global ago sent a letter to ExxonMobil’s top ex- to report what those scientists say.” economy by 20%. But taking action now ecutive strongly demanding that the com- In a similar vein is ABC News reporter would cost just 1% of global gross do- pany cease funding any group that doesn’t Bill Blakemore, who told a conference of mestic product, the 700-page study says. buy into the latest global-warming theory. journalists in Vermont this past October, “I Tony Blair said the Stern Review showed The letter’s message was, as pointed out by don’t like the word ‘balance’ much at all” that scientific evidence of global warming the Wall Street Journal, “Start toeing the in global-warming coverage. He added was ‘overwhelming’ and its consequences Senators’ line on climate change, or else.” that he felt “deep professional shame” in ‘disastrous.’” Free speech and balance are apparently supposedly being manipulated by those ITEM: Former Vice President Al Gore, re- outmoded concepts for true believers of who were skeptical. Reporting the views ported the Associated Press on December the faith of global warming. Consider one of such disbelievers, he maintained, saved 17, “says there is a ‘temptation’ to sup- such outspoken promoter, Ross Gelbspan, us “from the trouble of having to check press scientific findings that don’t agree an author with a long newspaper career out the fact that these other sides were the with policy and urges scientists to take with the Philadelphia Bulletin, Boston proverbial Flat Earth Society.” a more active role in communicating re- Globe, and Washington Post. It was Gelb- Well, it seems Mr. Blakemore is mighty search with the public. ‘Earth science has span who instructed an audience in the selective in his outrage. An October 30 been singled out’ and ignored by govern- nation’s capital: “Not only do journalists news release issued by the U.S. Senate ment, particularly work dealing with cli- not have a responsibility to report what Committee on Environment and Public mate change, he said.” The wire-service skeptical scientists have to say about glob- Works pointed out: “Blakemore said skep- 42 THE NEW AMERICAN • JANUARY 22, 2007
  • 43. tics of global warming should be ignored The Stern Review, due soon in U.S. because some of them are being funded bookstores and mentioned above by the by industry. But he has failed to note that BBC, was written not by a scientist, but scientists he promotes, such as James Han- by a former economist of the World Bank; sen [and] Michael Oppenheimer, are both it could only reach its wild conclusions recipients of huge sums of money from by grossly overstating even the worst of environmental special-interest groups.” worst-case scenarios. It maintains that, When Blakemore reported on January 29, unless drastic action is taken immediately, 2006, that NASA scientist James Hansen floods could displace 100 million people; was alleging that the Bush Administration melting glaciers may cause water short- was censoring his scientific work, he failed ages for one in six people worldwide; 40 to inform viewers that Hansen had received percent of animal species could become a quarter of a million dollars from Teresa extinct; and up to hundreds of millions of Heinz Kerry’s foundation, the Heinz Foun- people might become “climate refugees.” dation, and subsequently endorsed her hus- However, we are supposed to think those band, Democrat John Kerry, for President who have their doubts about these projec- in 2004.” Moreover, continued the senator, tions are extremists! “Michael Oppenheimer is a paid partisan of Monckton has been properly critical the group Environmental Defense.” of the Stern Review and Al Gore for their This is not to say that Al Gore, for ex- many unwarranted assumptions. Lord ample, is wrong in his global-warming Stern, he points out, went even beyond embellishing simply because he has been the hypotheses of the United Nations in hired by the British government specifical- his visions of impending doom. Yet, writes ly to embellish global warming. But why the viscount, even if the U.K. “were to should he or another paid propagandist be close down completely, and were to cease given a free pass? altogether to use energy, operate indus- Lord Monckton, the Viscount of Brench- tries or drive cars, the reduction in global ley, who was a policy advisor to British temperature by 2035 would amount to Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, made 0.0006C. This negligible temperature sav- just this point to Senators Rockefeller and ing would be more than outweighed by Snowe. Why, he asked, should the Royal just a few years’ further economic growth Society’s complaints about industry fund- in the Kyoto-exempted, Nairobi-excused ing be given particular credence? After all, China, which already has 30,000 coal the Royal Society’s “long-standing fund- mines, opens a new coal mine every week ing by [British] taxpayers does not ensure and will continue to open a new coal-fired any greater purity of motive or rigour of power station every five days until 2012. thought than industrial funding of scien- If global warming is a problem, the West, tists who dare to question whether ‘cli- even acting collectively, can do nothing mate change’ will do any harm.” without the co-operation of China, India, Indeed, he told the lawmakers, these Indonesia, Brazil and other fast-emerging attacks “acknowledge the effectiveness fast-polluting economies.” of the climate skeptics. In so doing, you The leading advocates of global warm- pay a compliment to the courage of those ing know this, but they conveniently ig- free-thinking scientists who continue to nore it because changing the weather isn’t research climate change independently what the global-warming push is about. despite the likelihood of refusal of pub- Their goal is to use the global-warming lication in journals that have taken pre- issue to impose their utopian vision for conceived positions; the hate mail and the world. As French President Jacques vilification from ignorant environmen- Chirac openly boasted at The Hague in talists; and the threat of loss of tenure in November 2000, Kyoto “represents the institutions of learning which no longer first component of an authentic global make any pretense to uphold or cherish governance.” ■ academic freedom.” — WILLIAM P. HOAR THE NEW AMERICAN • JANUARY 22, 2007
  • 44. THE LAST WORD BY WARREN MASS “Normalizing” Premarital Sex A new study who had missed their conducted curfew after falling by Lawrence asleep in a movie Finer, research direc- theater. They lament: tor at the Guttmacher “We fell asleep, our Institute, claims that goose is cooked, our 95 percent of Ameri- reputation is shot.” cans have had pre- Moreover, in the marital sex, and that days before the FDA this rate extends even approved “the pill” to women born in the in 1961, premarital 1940s. sexual activity, if it The report, entitled was as widespread as Trends in Premari- the Finer report sug- tal Sex in the United gests, would have un- States, 1954-2003, questionably resulted has received media at- in a very high rate tention that rivals the of out-of-wedlock publication in 1948 births and/or preg- of Alfred Kinsey’s Sexual Behavior in the Human Male. There nant brides at the altar. Yet, there were relatively few out-of- is, in fact, a common link to both reports. Kinsey’s work was wedlock births or pregnant brides during those days — as any of funded by a grant from the Rockefeller Foundation. And the us, this writer included, old enough to remember the pre-1960s Guttmacher Institute is a special affiliate of the Planned Parent- would recall. In fact, single-parent families were also relatively hood Federation of America, which has been funded lavishly by uncommon. members of the Rockefeller family and the Rockefeller Founda- If high-school and college girls in the days of Father Knows tion since its founding (under its original name, the Birth Con- Best were as promiscuous as those of recent years, why did the trol League of America) in 1916. annual birthrate per 1,000 unmarried girls aged 15-19 triple be- From Planned Parenthood’s point of view, a study helping to tween 1960 and 1994, even as abortion went from being illegal create the public perception, especially among impressionable almost everywhere to being available everywhere? young people, that almost everyone has engaged in premarital Why did the survey extend to age 44, since the median age sex, and that there’s really nothing wrong with doing it, is actu- of a first marriage for women in the United States in both 1950 ally good for business. and 1960 was 20.3? It is likely that these results included many The new Guttmacher report frankly admits that its purpose women born as early as 1939 that married as virgins at around is to discredit sexual abstinence programs (e.g., “Due in part to age 20 in the 1950s, but later became either divorced or wid- government support, private advocacy efforts to promote absti- owed. This pattern is suggested by the statement: “Even among nence until marriage are also gaining prominence and political those who abstained until at least age 20, 81% had had premari- clout.”) and substitute its own agenda in their place (“The results tal sex by age 44.” of the analysis indicate that premarital sex is highly normative The folks at Guttmacher would have us believe that the vir- behavior.”). ginal brides of the era popularized by Doris Day were a myth. Although there is little doubt that the rate of premarital sex But the study’s erroneous view of America prior to the sexual has increased since the onset of the “sexual revolution” in the revolution of the 1960s should cause us to question what the late 1960s, many individuals find the report’s findings incred- study says about America today. I don’t doubt that there’s more ible. Janice Crouse of Concerned Women for America expressed promiscuity than there used to be. But is it really as common- skepticism: “Any time I see numbers that high, I’m a little suspi- place as the study claims? cious. The numbers are too pat.” The Guttmacher report concludes: “Almost all Americans Especially questionable is the report’s statement: “Among have sex before marrying. These findings argue for education those turning 15 between 1954 and 1963, 82% had had pre- and interventions that provide the skills and information people marital sex by age 30, and 88% had done so by age 44.” Anyone need to protect themselves from unintended pregnancy and sex- familiar with American culture of the 1950s and even the first ually transmitted diseases once they become sexually active, half of the 1960s recalls the social ostracism that awaited young regardless of marital status.” ladies who did not wait for marriage. In the 1957 hit song, Which reminds us of the wise old maxim: “There are three “Wake Up Little Susie,” the Everly Brothers sang about a couple kinds of lies: lies, damn lies, and statistics.” ■ 44 THE NEW AMERICAN • JANUARY 22, 2007
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