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Nexus 1404 - new times magazine

  1. 1. NEXUS NEW TIMES MAGAZINE Volume 14, Number 4 JUNE – JULY 2007 UK/Europe edition Website: http://www.nexusmagazine.comLETTERS TO THE EDITOR.............................................4 SCIENCE NEWS..........................................................49 Comments from readers on topics including We reprint Julian Kanes theory on an undiscovered mycoplasma detection and the nucler power push. planet at the edge of the solar system, plus Michael Prescotts retort to years of misinformation onGLOBAL NEWS.............................................................6 "Project Alpha" psychic research in the early 1980s. We report on Monsantos revoked GM s o y b e a n FORGED ORIGINS OF THE NEW TESTAMENT..........53 patent, bee colony collapse disorder linked to By Tony Bushby. In the fourth century, the Roman mobile phone radiation, ocean circulation as a Emperor Constantine created a composite god, factor in global warming, and the next generation and commissioned the writing and compilation of of video games that interact with brain waves. the Gospels and Epistles of the New Testament.THE BUSH GOVERNMENTS SHADOW ARMY..........11 THE TWILIGHT ZONE................................................61 By Jeremy Scahill. Blackwater is one among many Our "out there" news features an extract from Genesis for the New Space Age, an unpublished private military contractors that are part of the Bush 1980 book in which author John B. Leith speaks of administrations "Total Force" in the USA and secret government programs to construct "round- foreign war zones but operate with impunity. wing" craft and communicate with aliens.CHICKENPOX VACCINE: A CYCLE OF DISEASE.......19 REVIEWS—Books........................................................67 By Gary S. Goldman, PhD. The Universal Varicella "The Templar Pirates" by Ernesto Frers "The Lords of Avaris" by David Rohl Vaccination Program in the USA has caused "Parallel Universes of Self" by Frederick E. Dodson secondary chickenpox and shingles outbreaks, but "Courageous Souls" by Robert Schwartz health authorities have covered up the risks. "How to Swap Asthma for Life" by Michael Clark "The Intention Experiment" by Lynne McTaggartTHE POWER OF THE PLACEBO EFFECT.....................27 "The Ark, The Shroud, and Mary" by Philip Gardiner By Peter Arguriou. Placebos are often more "Crusade Against the Grail" by Otto Rahn "In Search of Quetzalcoatl" by Pierre Honoré efficacious than the drugs tested in clinical trials, "Genesis of Man" by June Austin and science now suggests a biochemical substrate "A Game as Old as Empire" edited by Steven Hiatt as well as a psychological component to the effect. "The Chilling Stars" by Henrik Svensmark & Nigel Calder "How to Start Your Own Secret Society" by Nick HardingSEXUAL ENERGY IN HEALTH—Part 2........................33 "Ghost Plane" by Stephen Grey By Walter Last. Ancient spiritual traditions and REVIEWS—CDs & DVDs.............................................74 modern modes of relating sexually with our "Thunderbolts – Part 1" produced by D. Talbott and B. G. Low partners can assist in overcoming health problems, "The Truth About Childhood Obesity" produced by HEP "Space Story" by Mayan Animations improving vitality and increasing longevity. REVIEWS—Music........................................................75MELTING THE MYSTERY OF THE GREAT ICE AGE....41 "Gypsy Groove" by various artists By Edward F. Malkowski. Research into glaciation "Lion of Africa" by Manu Dibango "The Shape of Light" by Jeff Ball cycles began in the 19th century, but scientists still "Vieux Farka Touré" by Vieux Farka Touré cant agree on why ice ages occur. Now theres "Rahwanas Cry" by SambaSunda new evidence that a cold epoch is in the wings. NEXUS BOOKS, VIDEOS, ADS, SUBS...................83–88JUNE – JULY 2007 NEXUS • 1
  2. 2. EditorialNEXUS MAGAZINE Volume 14, Number 4 JUNE – JULY 2007 W years! elcome to another information-packed edition of NEXUS Magazine. For those who like to keep track of milestones, NEXUS has now been publishing for over 20 PUBLISHED BY First up is an article on the growing role of private military contractors. Private armies NEXUS Magazine UK are on the rise, and one is growing bigger than the rest. But how accountable are they to EDITOR democratic governments, and how accountable are they to the families of their Duncan M. Roads employees? Heck, who knows what they are doing, or where! CO-EDITOR A few weeks ago, I got an email from the local head of the sceptics movement. (I Catherine Simons really dont know why they even call themselves sceptics: I am far more sceptical than ASSISTANT EDITOR/SUB-EDITOR Ruth Parnell they are about things in society.) He told me that most sceptics agree with a lot of things OFFICE ADMIN/EDITORS ASSISTANTS that I put in NEXUS (Im sceptical about that claim as well!), but that all sceptics hate me Jenny Hawke; Susie Foster for my stance in opposing vaccinations. They still live in the dark ages where it is safe to UK OFFICE ADMIN believe that vaccines are safe and effective. Just for the record: vaccines are not safe, Marcus Allen; Alex Allen have never been proven to be safe anywhere or at any time, and dont work. They are a CONTRIBUTORS THIS ISSUE huge con, with so much momentum that even when insiders uncover the horrible truth Jeremy Scahill; Gary S. Goldman, PhD; they can do nothing. Read our article about yet another insider who tried to blow thePeter Arguriou; Walter Last; Edward F. Malkowski; Julian Kane; Michael Prescott; Tony Bushby; whistle on just a small (but important) aspect of the chickenpox vaccine. John B. Leith Interestingly, many sceptics blithely cite the placebo effect as being the reason why CARTOONS alternative medicines appear to work. It is a pity that sceptics dont bother to investigate Phil Somerville properly, because this sword cuts both ways, as you will see in our article about the COVER GRAPHIC placebo effect. It could well be that the reason any modern pharmaceuticals work is also Jeff Edis, due to the placebo effect. The mystery deepens. PRINTING And while I am dishing it out to so-called sceptics, you will definitely want to read Goodhed Print Group, Bicester, Oxon., UK about how the sceptics lie and distort information, which they then regurgitate ad DISTRIBUTION nauseam as fact. Yes, that famous Project Alpha that sceptics still use as evidence that Seymours, London, UK psychic research is bunk, actually shows that sceptics are more prone to lying andNEXUS UK OFFICE - 55 Queens Rd, E. Grinstead, distorting the facts than even the neocons surrounding George W. Bush! West Sussex, RH19 1BG. Ph: 01342 322854; Fax: 01342 324574 One has to wonder why sceptics persist in harassing astrologers, psychics and anti- e-mail address: vaccination experts when there are so many bigger fish to fry. I mean, what about that Website: global cult that believes in a virgin birth, psychic healing, talking to God, raising the EUROPE OFFICE - Postbus 10681, 1001 ER dead, etc.; that knowingly falsifies its own historical records; that is responsible for the Amsterdam, The Netherlands. wholesale slaughter of hundreds of millions of innocent people (whose only crime was to Ph: +31 (0)228 324076; Fax: +31 (0)228 312081 not want to join this cult); that has thousands of paedophile cases currently under various e-mail address: stages of investigation around the world; etc., etc.? Do the sceptics go after Christianity HEAD OFFICE - Articles, Reviews, etc. at all? Nope! Maybe they should look up the words "hypocrite" and "coward". PO Box 30, Mapleton, Qld 4560, Australia. Ph: +61 7 5442 9280; Fax: +61 7 5442 9381 Some time last year I received an email with a portion of a manuscript. When I finally e-mail address: got to reading it, I was stunned. I circulated it to a few other researchers, and no one had ITALY OFFICE - c/- Avalon Edizioni, Piazza heard of it or seen any of its contents. Given that it was written in 1980, it is an amazing Mazzini 52, 35137 Padova, Italy document about: human technical discoveries before WWII; contact with friendly USA OFFICE – humanoid aliens; geopolitical scrambles regarding UFO technology around WWII and PO Box 1248, Walterboro, SC 29488 after; exploration of the solar system; expeditions into a hollow Earth cavity via both Tel: +1 843 549 5985; Fax: +1 877 349 1928 Email: poles; etc., etc. It has so much detail of names, dates, times and places. Anyway, I have put an extract from the introduction and one chapter into the Twilight Zone section of STATEMENT OF PURPOSE this issue—but you must go and get the full document from the website thats listed. IfNEXUS recognises that humanity is undergoing a anyone can shed more light on this amazing manuscript, I want to know about it.massive transformation. With this in mind, NEXUSseeks to provide hard-to-get information so as to I am pleased to announce that there will be a NEXUS Conference this year. It will beassist people through these changes. NEXUS is not held in Australia (at the Novotel Twin Waters Resort, Sunshine Coast, Queensland) onlinked to any religious, philosophical or political Saturday 20, Sunday 21 and Monday 22 October. We have some fantastic speakers withideology or organisation. mind-blowing information already confirmed. The venue is right beside the beach, and PERMISSION-TO-REPRODUCE POLICY the weather should be warm. Seriously, if you have been waiting for the right moment toWhile reproduction and dissemination of the infor-mation in NEXUS is actively encouraged, anyone visit Australia, this is it! Check out more information at our (soon to be revamped)caught making a buck out of it, without our express website. Till next time,permission, will be in trouble when we catch them! Duncan WARRANTY AND INDEMNITYAdvertisers upon and by lodging material with the Publisher for publication or authorising or approving of the publication of any material INDEMNIFY thePublisher and its servants and agents against all liability claims or proceedings whatsoever arising from the publication and without limiting the generality of theforegoing to indemnify each of them in relation to defamation, slander of title, breach of copyright, infringement of trademarks or names of publication titles, unfaircompetition or trade practices, royalties or violation of rights or privacy AND WARRANT that the material complies with all relevant laws and regulations and thatits publication will not give rise to any rights against or liabilities in the Publisher, its servants or agents and in particular that nothing therein is capable of beingmisleading or deceptive or otherwise in breach of the Part V of the Trade Practices Act 1974. All expressions of opinion are published on the basis that they arenot to be regarded as expressing the opinion of the Publisher or its servants or agents. Editorial advice is not specific and readers are advised to seek professionalhelp for individual problems. The publisher reserves the right to refuse any advertising material for any reason. © NEXUS New Times 20072 • NEXUS JUNE – JULY 2007
  3. 3. JUNE – JULY 2007 NEXUS • 3
  4. 4. Letters to the Editor ...Mycoplasma Detection I contacted Englands primary [Dear Ian: We hope to make presses, the militaries, the Dear Sir: I have read with homoeopathic nosode all our past articles and issues lawyers, the judges and notmuch interest the article pharmacopoeia, the Malcolm available as text-searchable forgetting the electromagnetic"Mycoplasma: The Linking Rae people in England, who PDF files, both on DVD and weapons, clubs and guns, youPathogen in Neurosystemic knew about this already and had from our newly revamped can do anything you like toDiseases" by Donald Scott, MA, made a nosode from it. I website at http://www. anybody you like, whenever andMSc, published in NEXUS [vol. immediately began testing many Ed.] wherever you like...and if you8, no. 5, 2001]. I am an holistic sick animals, my family, myself think for one minute that theveterinary practitioner and (I suffer from chronic EM Weapons and No Rights media or judiciary will step inresearcher in California, USA, fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue Dear Duncan: Wonderful and prevail, then I suggest we allwho studied and trained in syndrome ) and my own animals article on "Electromagnetic start believing in the tooth fairyGermany with Reinhold Voll in in 2002 and discovered we all Weapons and Human Rights" again.his EAV [Electro-acupuncture tested positive. [NEXUS, vol. 14, no. 3], except I will gladly debate withby Voll] technique using a Were you aware that this for one very important but very- anyone on this planet the issuessophisticated electronic machine, infective crystalline mycoplasma little-known fact of life: nobody concerning language and thethe Dermatron, to evaluate the is still circling planet Earth and on planet Earth has any rights! writing of laws, contracts,health of a human patient via its still infecting people and animals That is to say, until each and constitutions, treaties, trusts and,energetic value registered from today in 2007? It is! every citizen of the world has most importantly, declarations.specific organ acupuncture I am looking for proof of corrected the deliberate and Bluey Morgan, PO Boxpoints. In this same circuitry, Dr current information on the 419W, Westcourt Qld 4870, entrapping mistakes on theirVoll was able to test specific American government or any birth certificates, there is no Australia, bluey@musician.orgdisease causative agents made other countrys government that comeback with any laws, nointo homoeopathic form (Voll is continuing this covert, rights can ever be claimed, and Hope against Type 2 Diabetescoined the word "nosodes" for nightmarish program of certainly no speaking out on any Dear Editor: I have type 2these) to see what normalised the infection. Are there any animal subject matter to do with a n y diabetes, and your article, "Ourabnormal reading. This then told researchers anywhere in the government official or office or, Deadly Diabetes Deception"him two things: what was world who are investigating and for that matter, any military unit [NEXUS, vol. 11, no 4, 2004], iscausing the disease in his human corroborating what I have anywhere on this planet, can be the first one I have read on thispatient; and what he had to give found? I wish to gather as much allowed without some form of disease that has given me any(the detox nosode) to make his documentation as possible to reprisal taking place. hope. For too many years, Ipatient well. enter into a class action lawsuit The Universal Declaration of have been on a steady diet of To make a long story short, I against the American Human Rights, the US Glynase™ and metformin,pioneered its use in animal government and military. Declaration of Independence, the without a hint that there was anymedicine in my private clinical Sincerely, US Constitution and also the way to effect a cure, and justpractice, published my two years Gloria Dodd, DVM, Holistic Australian Constitution are happened to migrate to your webof research in EAV in animal Veterinary Medicine, PO Box exactly as George Bush address while attempting tomedicine and for five years 1242, Gualala CA 95445, USA, described: "Just a goddamn obtain some data re Dr Linustaught other veterinarians how to email, website piece of paper". Pauling. And a very fortuitoususe the technique. Over these 31 When George Bush witnessed web migration it turned out toyears, I have been able to utilise the dismissal of Bill Clintons be.this and other holistic therapies NEXUS Articles as PDF Files impeachment trial and subse- My compliments to you and toand vibrational medical Dear Duncan: May I add my quent congressional hearing, he the writer of the article, Mrdiagnoses to produce true plea for your project of making actually acquired the knowledge Thomas Smith.miracles of recovery in cases that all NEXUS articles available as to implement the same proce- James D., Kawaguchi, Japanwere determined "untreatable" pdf files? Thank you for taking dures to save himself from anyby orthodox medicine. this on. future misappropriations or mis- Urine, Your Perfect Medicine! In 2002 I read the above- I, for one, would love to have demeanours, but what was worse Hi Duncan: How are youreferenced article in Dr all the past issues available (my for the people of the world was these days? Long time no see!Mercolas medical newsletter, to copies only go back to vol. 4, no. that this knowledge also allowed Good to see youre still putting itwhich I subscribe. I was 6). Theres so much that I often him to bring forth any executive "out there". I see yourhorrified that our government wish to re-read/refer to that I order or law, entirely at his own publication everywhere.and military would use often spend hours sifting through discretion and without the accep- The oppression of Newunsuspecting human beings in my past copies (cursing when I tance of Congress, forever! Zealands natural health industrythe US and Canada as guinea find I must have lent one out and To cut a very-drawn-out story is well underway. This nefariouspigs for their "Frankenstein" its now gone—I dont do that short, a l l languages on planet takeover treaty by Australian andpatented product, and that they any more!) for info. A Earth have been modified and New Zealand governmenthad genetically engineered computerised search would be a bastardised to the point that they officials amounts to criminality"crystalline mycoplasma" to see boon. Thanks again for all that actually say nothing, and with against all New Zealanders whowhat health effects this you and your team do. that knowledge anybody can do believed that they lived in amilitarised weapon would have Kind regards, anything to anybody. If your democracy. The day, not faron people. Ian body or group owns the printing away, that compulsory4 • NEXUS JUNE – JULY 2007
  5. 5. ... more Letters to the Editor NB: Please keep letters to approx. 150 to 250 words in length. Ed.vaccinations fall upon the healthiness. Imagine having to future, and whoever colonises time reader and supporter.population may be the day when buy all those things! the Moon could control it—one Extremely disillusioned,Mr and Mrs "everythings okay" Urine is your own to do with it of the worrying notions in a film Dean V.wake up to whats really going what you like. You can rub it that features several former [Hi, Dean: I suspect youron. But I wont hold my breath, into troubled skin where it will astronauts and a man who used letter reflects the views of moreas New Zealanders continue to not smell on account of massage- to be an undercover cop for than one reader, and I canallow water fluoridation, accept induced absorption. You can NASA." certainly see and appreciatemercury as a dental filling and gargle, douche, poultice, make Is this guy (its signed "David your point of view. It seems oneallow ongoing wholesale homoeopathic drops of and bathe Butcher") confusing fission with happy Elanra customers letterdestruction of our beautiful in your own urine to your hearts fusion? However, it does answer to us triggered off others. Thesenatural forests, waterways and content, knowing fully well that a lot of interesting questions ads have nothing to do with theseacoasts. you are using the most ancient about why theres the push to product placement you cite. We The good news is that there and therapeutic medicine God reintroduce nuclear power and have been running those ads inremains one medicine that no has ever provided for the well- create panic about global those positions for quite a fewgovernmental agency can touch being of mankind. warming. years now. There was noand no one can take away from Kind regards, Best wishes, financial inducement; the adsyou or your loved ones; a perfect Malcolm K. Harker, MHD, Beth F. would have run with or withoutmedicine specially made to suit Harker & Ryan Herbal Products the letters. If people get goodyour body. You dont have to go Ltd, 31 The Centre, Waipu 0510,see your doctor for a Product Placement Concerns results from things advertised in Northland, New Zealand, Dear Duncan: As a long-time NEXUS, then I am going toprescription, nor does it cost you cent. Its a medicine you carry reader and recent subscriber, I continue telling readers about itwithin your own body: your was horrified to read a couple of for the short time we will be ableurine! It is the perfect, Nuclear Power Push this months letters to the editor to do so. Testimonials for ANYcustomised, natural medicine Dear Duncan: As both a [vol. 13, no. 3]. health product or service willand universal cure prepared reader of NEXUS and a listener I would first like to soon be banned from appearingespecially by you. to Radio NEXUS, I follow the acknowledge the good that in anything, under new With over 3,000 natural course of events closely. Until NEXUS has done over the years; regulations coming soon. Ed.]health-promoting ingredients, it now, I have been at a loss to however, I believe that you mayis wasteful to flush it all away. explain the insane but sudden have just gone off the rails Help for Arachnoiditis SufferersThe healing principles of urine rush back to nuclear power. slightly. I was compelled to Dear Duncan: I have readare recorded in over 5,000 years Simply covering the write this letter after reading with interest Gil Mays article onof human culture, but most development costs, as you letters headed "Persecuted by arachnoiditis [NEXUS, vol. 13,especially Indian and Germanic suggested on Radio NEXUS 36, Health Alliance" and "Far- does not seem strong enough, Infrared Sauna Success". Both no. 5], and am so pleased thatcultures. Few people realise that this article on the subject that nothey spread human urine on their but today I think I found another of these letters in my opinion piece of the puzzle. It comes were blatant testimonials for one in the medical professionface every time they apply likes to speak of was actuallycertain cosmetics containing the from the Radio Times, the UKs products advertised in your original TV listings magazine. magazine, prefaced with good published.common ingredient urea, which I have also read comments byis obtained from human female Its produced by the BBC and arguments about the state of the these days is not known for the established health industry. Peter Groves of the Queenslandurine. Association and then the follow- For home use, take 10 to 20 intellectual ability of its Not just any advertisements, contributors. So there is still a but ads that featured on the most up by Derek Morrison.drops of midstream, first- query in my mind, as I will expensive ad positions, being the I would just like to mentionmorning pee and hold it under explain. However, the relevant inside front cover and outside that there is also an associationthe tongue until it naturallytrickles down the throat. Using text from the listing " Horizon, back cover. for sufferers of arachnoiditis inan eyedropper and placing under BBC2, Tuesday 10 April" reads: You have severely New South Wales.the tongue as said, there is no "Yes, Moon science is big underestimated your readership Some of our members havetaste because the tastebuds are again. Not only is NASA if you think you can introduce decided to go through withon top of the tongue. Just a few planning more missions, but "product placement" and not litigation and others just wantseconds is all it takes to ingest it. China, Russia, Japan, India and have it blow up in your face. For the comfort of knowing they are Urine therapy gives back to Europe all have lunar a magazine such as NEXUS, not alone with their pain andthe body lost trace elements, programmes. So why the which I personally hold in very there is always someone they canminerals, vitamins, enzymes and scramble? The answer lies in a high regard and is one which call and talk to.hormones conducive to cellular substance called helium-3, which often questions journalistic Members have made friendshealth. Urine contains is as common as muck on the integrity (read the bottom of the with each other at our meetingsantibodies specific to ones needs Moon and could fuel nuclear NEXUS home page), I fear that and swap information when thein sickness and good health. fission—the fancy kind of your integrity has been morally meeting is over and stay behindProvided diet is healthful, ones nuclear power reaction that compromised. I do not believe to chat.own urine is a homoeopathic scientists are struggling to make in coincidence, and without a Maureen McLean, JP,remedy containing over 3,000 viable. Hence helium-3 might sufficient rebuttal to the above President/Secretary, AASANSWingredients necessary to your just be the wonder fuel of the allegations you have lost a long- Inc., – JULY 2007 NEXUS • 5
  6. 6. MONSANTOS GM ARE MOBILE PHONESSOYBEAN PATENT NIXED WIPING OUT OUR BEES?T he European Patent Office today put the brakes onMonsantos over-the-top S cientists are putting forward the theory that radiation given off by mobile phones and othercorporate greed by revoking its high-tech gadgets is a possiblespecies-wide patent on all answer to one of the more bizarregenetically modified (GM) mysteries ever to happen in thesoybeans (EP0301749)—a patent natural world: the abruptunprecedented in its broad scope. disappearance of bees. ETC Group, an international In mid-April, some bee-keeperscivil society organisation based in in Britain reported that theCanada, won its 13-year legal phenomenon—which started inchallenge against Monsantos the USA, then spread tospecies-wide soybean patent continental Europe—was hittingwhen an EPO appeal board ruled them as well.that the patent was not new or The theory is that radiationsufficient (i.e., the invention from mobile phones interferesclaimed was not sufficiently with bees navigation systems,described for a skilled person to preventing the bees from findingrepeat it). their way back to their hives. The patent was vigorously and Improbable as it may seem, thereformally opposed by Monsanto itself until demonstrates just how broken the patent is now evidence to back this up.the company purchased the original patent system is. The patent had barely a year to What is referred to as Colony Collapseassignee (Agracetus) in 1996. The go before expiring!" said Hope Shand, Disorder (CCD) occurs when a hivestechnology related to the now-revoked who represented ETC Group in Munich. inhabitants suddenly disappear, leaving onlypatent has been used, along with other "It was particularly satisfying," said the queen, eggs and a few immaturepatents in the companys portfolio, to Shand, "that Monsantos own blistering workers. The vanished bees are nevercorner 90 per cent of the worlds GM 1994 arguments against the patent were found. Parasites, wildlife and other bees,soybean market. ultimately key in defeating it." which normally raid the honey and pollen "Its shameful that it took the European One of Monsantos top scientists left behind when a colony dies, refuse to goPatent office 13 years to kill Monsantos testified in 1994 that the genetic anywhere near the abandoned hives.immoral patent, which was ultimately engineering process described in the patent The alarm was first sounded in the USArevoked on technical grounds. Though was insufficient to allow a skilled scientist last autumn, and CCD has now hit half ofwere relieved that the species-wide patent to replicate the procedure—a necessary all American states. The West Coast ison all genetically modified soybeans— criterion for patentability. thought to have lost 60 per cent of itsboth seeds and plants—was not allowed to (Source: ETC Group news release, 3 May commercial bee population, with 70 perstand, the delay of more than a decade 2007, cent missing on the East Coast. CCD has since spread to Germany, Switzerland, Spain, Portugal, Italy and Greece. The implications of the spread are alarming. Most of the worlds crops depend on pollination by bees. Albert Einstein once said that if the bees disappeared, "man would have only four years of life left". No one knows why it is happening. Theories involving mites, pesticides, global warming and GM crops have been proposed, but all have drawbacks. German research has long shown that bees behaviour changes near power lines. Now a limited study at Landau University has found that bees refuse to return to their hive when mobile phones are placed nearby. Dr Jochen Kuhn, who carried it out, said this could provide a "hint" to a possible cause. (Source: The Independent , UK, 15 April 2007, • NEXUS JUNE – JULY 2007
  7. 7. ... GL BAL NEWS ... DO OCEAN CURRENTS CAUSE AUSTRALIAS MEDIA UNITE ON COURT ACQUITS GLOBAL WARMING? FREE SPEECH PAN PHARMACEUTICALS BOSSH urricane forecaster William Gray claims that global ocean currents, nothuman-produced carbon dioxide A ustralias largest newspaper, television and radio companies have set aside their traditional rivalries to unite behind a T he Australian Democrats have called for the Howard government to apologise following the acquittal of Panemissions, are responsible for global new public campaign, "Australias Right to Pharmaceuticals boss Jim Selim in thewarming, and that the Earth may begin to Know", designed to protect free speech. New South Wales Supreme Court on 18cool on its own in five to 10 years time. Fairfax Media (publisher of the Age and April. The company, Australias largest Gray, a Colorado State University the Sydney Morning Herald), News Ltd natural health manufacturing base, wasresearcher best known for his annual (the A u s t r a l i a n), FreeTV ( r e p r e s e n t i n g forced into administration in May 2003forecasts of hurricanes along the US free-to-air television networks, the ABC following the largest pharmaceutical recallAtlantic coast, also said that increasing and SBS) and commercial radio in Australias history.levels of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere broadcasters will argue that free speech is "It was a pointless exercise targetingwont produce more or stronger hurricanes. being eroded through more than 500 complementary medicines and it sent He said that during the past 40 years, the Federal and State laws and regulations. hundreds of small businesses broke," saidnumber of major hurricanes making The media organisations believe some Democrats leader and health spokespersonlandfall on the US Atlantic coast has restrictions interfere with journalists Senator Lyn Allison. "The Howarddeclined compared with the previous 40 abilities to report issues and events government turned its back on the messyears, even though carbon dioxide levels accurately. and just walked away."have risen. A landmark Freedom of Information Over 1,500 products were recalled, not Gray complained that politics and (FoI) case, brought to the High Court by because they caused adverse reactions butresearch into global warming have created the A u s t r a l i a n newspaper, was lost in because of speculation about "inconsistent"almost an industry" that has unfairly 2006, prompting calls for a significant quality".frightened the public and overwhelmed overhaul of FoI laws to better protect the Mr Selim was accused of a litany ofdissenting voices. public interest. charges, including breaching his He said research arguing that humans Media outlets are concerned that manufacturing licence. In the end, onlyare causing global warming is based on whistleblowers and others prepared to two counts made it to court and these wereunreliable computer models that cannot reveal sensitive government material in the thrown out.possibly take into account the hundreds of public interest are not adequately "The unprecedented recall had afactors that influence the weather. protected, nor are the journalists who devastating effect on small businesses and Gray said ocean circulation patterns are report the material. shook public confidence in complementarybehind a decades-long warming cycle. He Legal academics have been critical of health," Senator Allison said. "The veryhas argued previously that the strength of the FoI laws, and international studies least those who have suffered deserve is anthese patterns can affect how much cold have shown that Australia ranks poorly on apology."water rises to the surface, which in turn press freedom compared with other (Source: Australian Democrats pressaffects how warm or cold the atmosphere is. developed countries. release, 18 April 2007, http://www.(Source: by Dan Elliott, Associated Press, (Source: The Age , Melbourne, 10 May; Alliance for Health28 April 2007) 2007, Freedom Australia, WHERE HAVE ALL THE TV VIEWERS GONE?A startling number of Americans drifted away from television over the few twomonths. More than 2.5 million fewerpeople were watching ABC, CBS, NBCand Fox than at the same time last year,statistics show. Everyone has a theory to explain theplummeting ratings: early daylightsavings time, more re-runs, bad shows,more shows being recorded or downloadedor streamed. The networks argue that viewership ischanging, not necessarily declining. The viewer plunge couldnt have comeat a worse time for the networks: nextweek they will showcase their fallschedules to advertisers in the annual "upfront" presentations.(Source: AP, 9 May 2007)JUNE – JULY 2007 NEXUS • 7
  8. 8. ... GL BAL NEWS ... SPYCHIPS: COMBINING EAS Dr Albrecht says: "This will be a The Atlanta conviction follows two other TAGS WITH RFID consumer privacy nightmare—and no one cases of vegan parents found guilty of theT o Dr Katherine Albrecht, founder of CASPIAN Consumer Privacy and co-author of S p y c h i p s, our worst consumer will even know its happening. Thats because industry lobbyists have prevented RFID labeling legislation from passing deaths of their babies. Previously, a New York couple was convicted of murder and a Florida couple of manslaughter. Manyprivacy nightmare is for anti-theft tags anywhere in the nation. There is no more babies, however, have been(known in the industry as "EAS" tags) requirement that retailers or manufacturers malnourished on soy milk because of theirsome day to be combined with individually tell us when theyre hiding RFID tags in our parents vegan ideology.trackable RFID chips and slipped into clothes, shoes, books, or anything else." "The myth that soy is a health food hasconsumer products. Well, those tags are (Source: CASPIAN news release, 29 April led many parents—particularly vegans,now here. 2007,; R F I D who use no animal products—to believe Checkpoint Systems has unveiled the J o u r n a l, 27 April 2007, http://www.rfid that soy milk is a complete and nourishingEvolve product family of labels, which food not only for adults but for babies andmarries RFID technology with Checkpoints children. It is not, and severe vitamin,electronic article surveillance (EAS) SOY MILK IS DANGEROUS mineral, fatty acid and amino amino acidtechnology. Checkpoint developed the dual- FOR BABIES deficiencies will occur. Thats whypurpose labels to offer its retail customers ameans of leveraging RFID tools for in-storeinventory visibility while continuing to use T he murder conviction in Atlanta, USA, of vegan parents whose six-week-old baby died of starvation underscores the supplements are required by law to be added to soy infant formula." In 2003, the deaths of three Israelithe EAS tags as a theft deterrent. dangers of vegan ideology to infants. To infants from improperly manufactured soy The Evolve labels contain a Checkpoint supplement the mothers inadequate supply formula led the Israeli Health Ministry to8.2 MHz radio frequency (RF) EAS inlay, of breastmilk, the parents had fed their son form a 13-member committee ofwhich does not contain a microprocessor or soy milk and apple juice. The baby was paediatricians, oncologists, toxicologistscarry a unique ID. The inlay is designed to only 3.5 pounds when he died of starvation and other health experts to investigate soytrigger an alarm if passed through an EAS in April 2004. formula and soy foods.reader stationed around store exits, unless "Soy milk should never be given to In July 2005, the Ministry issued a healthfirst deactivated at the point of purchase. infants in place of formula," says Kaayla T. advisory in which it warned that babiesThe labels also contain an 850–950 MHz Daniel, PhD, author of The Whole Soy should not receive soy formula (except as aEPC Gen 2 RFID inlay, to which an EPC Story: The Dark Side of Americas last resort) and that children up to age 18can be encoded to identify and track Favorite Health Food. should not eat soy foods or drink soy milkindividual products. "In 1990, the FDA issued a warning more than once per day to a maximum of The initial Evolve tag design, the Evolve about the use of soy milk for infants, three times per week.410, involves the placement of an EAS stating that it is grossly lacking in the The Ministry was concerned about manyantenna around the RFID inlay, containing nutrients needed for infants, and asked all health issues, including adverse effects onan Impinj Monza chip on an adhesive paper manufacturers to put warning labels on soy fertility and increased cancer risk. Thesubstrate. The labels are slightly less than milks so that they would not be used as governments of the UK, Switzerland andtwo inches (5.1 cm) square, enabling it to formula substitutes." Yet most makers of New Zealand have also warned that soybe attached to most hang-tags for apparel soy milk put warning labels on the package infant formula should only be used as a lastand footwear products. in very tiny print, if at all. resort. And soy milk should never be used at all. (Source: Kaayla T. Daniel, 11 May 2007, "BIG BROTHER" MICROPHONES MAY BE LINKED WITH CCTV H idden mini-cameras and microphones that can eavesdrop on conversations in the street are the next step in the march towards a "Big Brother" society, British MPs were warned on1 May. Richard Thomas, the UK I n f o r m a t i o n Commissioner, said a debate had begun about whether listening devices should be set up alongside Britains 4.5 million CCTV cameras. In evidence to the Commons Home Affairs Committee, he said he would be hostile to such an idea. He was also alarmed by the prospect of tiny cameras, hidden in lamp posts, replacing more obvious monitors.8 • NEXUS JUNE – JULY 2007
  9. 9. ... GL BAL NEWS ... Mr Thomas even considered that so- IMF AND WORLD BANK FACE DECLINING AUTHORITY AScalled "talking CCTV", which is to be VENEZUELA ANNOUNCES WITHDRAWALtrialled in 20 areas across the country,might be a "bridge too far". This systemallows operators to bellow orders at thosedeemed to be behaving badly. V enezuelas decision to pull out of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the World Bank will be seen in the United States as just another example of the ongoing feud between Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez and the Bush Administration. But it is He said it was arguable that surveillance likely to be viewed differently in the rest of the world, and could have an impact on bothin Britain—which is greater than in any institutions, whose power and legitimacy in developing countries have been waningother democratic nation—may already steadily in recent years.have gone too far. Other countries may follow. President Rafael Correa of Ecuador announced last But MPs told Mr Thomas that their week that it was kicking the World Banks representative out of the country. It was anconstituents were keen on CCTV, which unprecedented action, which President Correa punctuated by stating that "we will notthey found reassuring. stand for extortion by this international bureaucracy". In 2005, the World Bank(Source: Daily Telegraph, UK, 2 May 2007, withheld a previously approved US$100 million loan to Ecuador to try to force the government to use windfall oil revenues for debt repayment, rather than the governments choice of social spending. NEXT-GENERATION VIDEO This is the way these two institutions have operated for decades. With the IMF as GAMES READ BRAIN WAVES leader and the US Treasury department holding veto power, they have run a "creditorsE ngineers at NeuroSky Inc. have big plans for brain-wave-reading toys andvideo games, to make them more mentally cartel" that has been able to exert enormous pressure on governments over a wide variety of economic issues. This pressure has not only generated widespread resentment, but has also often led to economic failure in the countries and regions where the IMF andstimulating and realistic. The technology World Bank have had the most influence. Over the last 25 years, Latin America has hadcould even enable players to control video its worst long-term economic growth performance in more than a characters or avatars in virtual worlds Venezuela also has specific grievances against the IMF, which are likely to generatewith nothing but their thoughts. sympathy in other developing countries with democratic, left-of-centre governments. Adding biofeedback to Tiger Woods On 12 April 2002, just hours after Venezuelas democratically elected government wasPGA Tour, for instance, could mean that overthrown in a military coup, the IMF stated publicly that it was "ready to assist theonly those players who muster Zen-like new administration [of Pedro Carmona] in whatever manner they find suitable".concentration could nail a putt. In the This instantaneous show of financial support for a newly installed dictatorship—onepopular first-person shooter Grand Theft which immediately dissolved the countrys Constitution, General Assembly andA u t o, players who become nervous or Supreme Court—was unprecedented in the IMFs history. Typically the IMF does notfrightened will have worse aim than those react so quickly, even to an elected government. It is no wonder that this move waswho remain relaxed and focused. seen in Venezuela and elsewhere as an attempt by the IMF to support the coup itself. NeuroSkys prototype measures a Washington, which dominates the Fund, had advance knowledge of the coup, supportedpersons baseline brain-wave activity, it and funded some of its leaders, according to US government documents.including signals that relate to In addition, Venezuela has not been happy with the IMFs consistently under-concentration, relaxation and anxiety. projecting its economic growth in recent years, as the Fund has also done with The technology ranks performance in Argentina. The IMFs forecasts are widely used and can therefore influence investors.each category on a scale of one to 100, and But the resentment against the IMF and the World Bank and demands for change arethe numbers change as a person thinks worldwide. The scandal over Paul Wolfowitzs leadership at the World Bank, which isabout relaxing images, focuses intently or about to topple the Banks most unwanted president ever, is just the tip of the iceberg.gets kicked, interrupted or otherwise Last month, the IMFs Independent Evaluation Office stated that since 1999 nearly three-distracted. quarters of aid money given to the poor countries of Sub-Saharan Africa is not being The technology is similar to more spent. Rather, at the IMFs request, it is being used to pay off debt and accumulatesensitive, expensive equipment that reserves. This is a terrible thing to do to some of the poorest countries in the world, whichathletes use to achieve peak performance. desperately need to spend this money on such pressing needs as the HIV/AIDS pandemic.Koo Hyoung Lee, a NeuroSky co-founder Venezuelas decision is likely to strengthen the hand of developing nations within thefrom South Korea, used biofeedback to IMF and the World Bank which are demanding serious reforms. Right now the Unitedimprove concentration and relaxation States, with less than five per cent of the worlds population, has more votes in the IMFtechniques for members of his countrys than countries representing the majority of the planet. The worlds developingOlympic archery team. countries, which bear the brunt of these institutions mistakes, have little or no voice in Toys with even the most basic brain- their decision-making. Venezuelas move—and any other countries that follow—willwave-reading technology—scheduled for show the IMF and the World Bank that the option of quitting these institutionsdebut later this year—could boost mental altogether is a real one.focus and help kids with attention deficit Whether this will spur reform that can actually change the colonial relationship thathyperactivity disorder, autism and mood these institutions maintain with their borrowers remains to be seen. More likely, theydisorders. will simply continue to become less relevant to the developing world, as has happened(Source: Associated Press, 30 April 2007, drastically over the last decade. (Source: by Mark Weisbrot, McClatchy Tribune Information Services, 1 May 2007,/04/30/ – JULY 2007 NEXUS • 9
  10. 10. 10 • NEXUS JUNE – JULY 2007
  11. 11. O n September 10, 2001, before most Americans had heard of Al-Qaeda or imagined the possibility of a "war on terror", Donald Rumsfeld stepped to the podium at the Pentagon to deliver one of his first major addresses as Defense Secretary under President George W. Bush. Standing before the former corporate executives he had tapped as his top deputies overseeing the high-stakes business of military contracting—many of them from firms like Enron, General Dynamics and The Aerospace Corporation—Rumsfeld issued a declaration of war. Private military "The topic today is an adversary that poses a threat, a serious threat, to the security of the United States of America...," Rumsfeld thundered. "It disrupts the defense of the contractors like United States and places the lives of men and women in uniform at risk." He told his new staff: "You may think Im describing one of the last decrepit dictators of the world... The Blackwater are now adversarys closer to home. Its the Pentagon bureaucracy." Rumsfeld called for a wholesale shift in the running of the Pentagon, supplanting the old DoD [Department of part of the Bush Defense] bureaucracy with a new model—one based on the private sector. Announcing this major overhaul, Rumsfeld told his audience: "I have no desire to attack the Pentagon; Administrations I want to liberate it. We need to save it from itself." transformed "Total The next morning, the Pentagon would be attacked, literally, as a Boeing 757— American Airlines Flight 77—smashed into its western wall. Rumsfeld would famously Force" in the USA assist rescue workers in pulling bodies from the rubble. But it didnt take long for Rumsfeld to seize the almost unthinkable opportunity presented by 9/11 to put his and abroad, but are personal war—laid out just a day before—on the fast track. The new Pentagon policy would emphasise covert actions, sophisticated weapons systems and greater reliance on operating with private contractors. It became known as the Rumsfeld Doctrine. "We must promote a more entrepreneurial approach—one that encourages people to be proactive, not reactive, virtually no and to behave less like bureaucrats and more like venture capitalists," Rumsfeld wrote in the summer of 2002 in an article for Foreign Affairs titled "Transforming the Military". oversight by the Although Rumsfeld was later thrown overboard by the Administration in an attempt to US Congress. placate critics of the Iraq War, his military revolution was here to stay. Bidding farewell to Rumsfeld in November 2006, Bush credited him with overseeing "the most sweeping transformation of Americas global defense posture" since the end of World War II. Indeed, Rumsfelds trademark "small footprint" approach ushered in one of the most significant developments in modern warfare: the widespread use of private contractors in every aspect of war, including in combat. The often overlooked subplot of the wars of the post-9/11 period is their unprecedented scale of outsourcing and privatisation. From the moment the US troop build-up began in advance of the invasion of Iraq, the Pentagon made private contractors an integral part of the operations. Even as the government gave the public appearance of attempting diplomacy, Halliburton was prepping for a massive operation. When US tanks rolled into by Jeremy Scahill © 2007 Baghdad in March 2003, they brought with them the largest army of private contractors ever deployed in modern war. By the end of Rumsfelds tenure in late 2006, there were an First published in The Nation, estimated 100,000 private contractors on the ground in Iraq—an almost one-to-one ratio 2 April 2007 with active-duty American soldiers. Web page: To the great satisfaction of the war industry, before Rumsfeld resigned he took the extraordinary step of classifying private contractors as an official part of the US war 20070402/scahill_vid machine. In the Pentagons 2006 Quadrennial Defence Review report, Rumsfeld outlined what he called a "roadmap for change" at the DoD, which he said had begun to be implemented in 2001. It defined the "Departments Total Force" as "...its active andJUNE – JULY 2007 NEXUS • 11
  12. 12. reserve military components, its civil servants, and its Casey defended the contracting system but said armed contractorscontractors—constitut[ing] its warfighting capability and "are the ones that we have to watch very carefully". Senator Joecapacity. Members of the Total Force serve in thousands of Biden, chair of the Foreign Relations Committee, has alsolocations around the world, performing a vast array of duties to indicated he will hold hearings on contractors. Parallel to theaccomplish critical missions." This formal designation ongoing investigations, there are several bills gaining steam inrepresented a major triumph for war contractors—conferring on Congress aimed at contractor oversight.them a legitimacy they had never before enjoyed. Occupying the hot seat through these deliberations is the Contractors have provided the Bush Administration with shadowy mercenary company, Blackwater USA. Unbeknownst topolitical cover, allowing the government to deploy private forces many Americans and largely off the congressional radar,in a war zone free from public Blackwater has secured a position ofscrutiny, with the deaths, injuries and remarkable power and protectioncrimes of those forces shrouded in Contractors allow a within the US war apparatus. Thissecrecy. The Administration and the companys success represents theRepublican-controlled Congress in government to deploy realisation of the lifes work of theturn shielded the contractors from private forces in a war zone conservative officials who formed theaccountability, oversight and legal core of the Bush Administrations warconstraints. Despite the presence of free from public scrutiny, team, for whom radical privatisationmore than 100,000 private contractors with the deaths, injuries and has long been a cherished ideologicalon the ground in Iraq, only one mission. Blackwater has repeatedlycontractor has been indicted for crimes crimes of those forces cited Rumsfelds statement thator violations. "We have over 200,000troops in Iraq and half of them arent shrouded in secrecy. contractors are part of the "Total Force" as evidence that it is abeing counted, and the danger is that legitimate part of the nationstheres zero accountability," said "warfighting capability and capacity".Democrat Dennis Kucinich, one of the leading congressional Invoking Rumsfelds designation, the company has in effectcritics of war contracting. declared its forces above the law—entitled to the immunity from While the past years of Republican monopoly on government civilian lawsuits enjoyed by the military, but also not bound byhave marked a golden era for the industry, those days appear to be the militarys court martial system. While the initial inquiries intoending. Just a month into the new congressional term, leading Blackwater have focused on the complex labyrinth of secretiveDemocrats were announcing investigations of runaway war subcontracts under which it operates in Iraq, a thoroughcontractors. Representative John Murtha, chair of the investigation into the company reveals a frightening picture of aAppropriations Committees Subcommittee on Defense, after politically connected private army that has become the Bushreturning from a trip to Iraq in late January, said: "Were going to Administrations Praetorian Guard.have extensive hearings to find out exactly whats going on withcontractors. They dont have a clear mission and theyre falling all Blackwater Risingover each other." Two days later, during confirmation hearings for Blackwater was founded in 1996 by conservative ChristianGen. George Casey as Army Chief of Staff, Senator Jim Webb multimillionaire and ex-Navy SEAL Erik Prince, the scion of adeclared: "This is a rent-an-army out ther." Webb asked Casey: wealthy Michigan family whose generous political donations"Wouldnt it be better for this country if those tasks, particularly helped fuel the rise of the religious right and the Republicanthe quasi-military gunfighting tasks, were being performed by revolution of 1994. At its founding, the company largelyactive-duty military soldiers in terms of cost and accountability?" consisted of Princes private fortune and a vast 5,000-acre plot of land located near the Great Dismal Swamp in Moyock, North Carolina. Its vision was "to fulfill the anticipated demand for government outsourcing of firearms and related security training". In the following years, Prince, his family and his political allies poured money into Republican campaign coffers, supporting the partys takeover of Congress and the ascension of George W. Bush to the presidency. While Blackwater won government contracts during the Clinton era, which was friendly to privatisation, it was not until the "war on terror" that the companys glory moment arrived. Almost overnight, following September 11, 2001, the company became a central player in a global war. "Ive been operating in the training business now for four years and was starting to get a little cynical on how seriously people took security," Prince told Fox News host Bill OReilly shortly after 9/11. "The phone is ringing off the hook now."12 • NEXUS JUNE – JULY 2007
  13. 13. Among those calls was one from the CIA, which contracted officials. Under bipartisan fire, Schmitz resigned [in SeptemberBlackwater to work in Afghanistan in the early stages of US 2005] and signed up with Blackwater.operations there. In the ensuing years the company has become Despite its central role, Blackwater had largely operated in theone of the greatest beneficiaries of the "war on terror", winning shadows until March 31, 2004, when four of its private soldiers innearly US$1 billion in noncovert government contracts, many of Iraq were ambushed and killed in Fallujah. A mob then burned thethem no-bid arrangements. In just a decade Prince has expanded bodies and dragged them through the streets, stringing up two fromthe Moyock headquarters to 7,000 acres, making it the worlds a bridge over the Euphrates. In many ways, it was the moment thelargest private military base. Blackwater currently has 2,300 Iraq War turned. US forces laid siege to Fallujah days later, killingpersonnel deployed in nine countries, with 20,000 other hundreds of people and displacing thousands, inflaming the fiercecontractors at the ready. It has a fleet of more than 20 aircraft, Iraqi resistance that haunts occupation forces to this day. For mostincluding helicopter gunships and a private intelligence division, Americans, it was the first they had heard of private soldiers.and is manufacturing surveillance blimps and target systems. "People began to figure out this is quite a phenomenon," said In 2005 after hurricane Katrina, Blackwater deployed its forces Representative David Price, a North Carolina Democrat, who saidin New Orleans, where it billed the federal government $950 per he began monitoring the use of private contractors after per day—at one point, raking in more than $240,000 a day. "Im probably like most Congress members in kind of coming toAt its peak, the company had about 600 contractors deployed this awareness and developing an interest in it" after the incident.from Texas to Mississippi. Since Katrina, it What is not so well-known is that inhas aggressively pursued domestic Washington after the Fallujah incident,contracting, opening a new domestic Blackwater executives kicked into high gear,operations division. Blackwater is marketing capitalising on the companys newfoundits products and services to the Department of recognition. The day after the ambush, itHomeland Security, and its representatives hired the Alexander Strategy Group, a Khave met with California Governor Arnold Blackwater, with Street lobbying firm run by former seniorSchwarzenegger. The company has applied 20,000 other staffers of then majority leader Tom DeLayfor operating licences in all US coastal states. before the firms meltdown in the wake of theBlackwater is also expanding its physical contractors at the Jack Abramoff scandal. A week to the daypresence inside US borders, opening facilities ready, has a fleet of after the ambush, Erik Prince was sittingin Illinois and California. down with at least four senior members of Its largest obtainable government contract is more than 20 aircraft, the Senate Armed Services Committee,with the State Department, for providing including helicopter including its chair, John Warner. Senatorsecurity to US diplomats and facilities in Rick Santorum arranged the meeting,Iraq. That contract began in 2003 with gunships and a private which included Warner and two otherthe companys $21 million no-bid deal toprotect Iraq proconsul Paul Bremer. intelligence division, key Republican senators— Appropriations Committee chair TedBlackwater has guarded the two and is manufacturing Stevens of Alaska and George Allen ofsubsequent US ambassadors, JohnNegroponte and Zalmay Khalilzad, as surveillance blimps Virginia. This meeting followed an earlier series of face-to-faces Prince hadwell as other diplomats and occupation and target systems. had with powerful House Republicansoffices. Its forces have protected more who oversaw military contracts; amongthan 90 congressional delegations in Iraq, them: DeLay; Porter Goss, chair of theincluding that of House Speaker Nancy House Intelligence Committee (andPelosi. According to the latest future CIA director); Duncan Hunter,government contract records, since June chair of the House Armed Services2004 Blackwater has been awarded $750 Committee; and Representative Billmillion in State Department contracts Young, chair of the Housealone. It is currently engaged in an intensive lobbying campaign to Appropriations Committee. What was discussed at thesebe sent into Darfur as a privatised peacekeeping force. Last meetings remains a secret. But Blackwater was clearlyOctober, President Bush lifted some sanctions on Christian positioning itself to make the most of its new fame. Indeed, twosouthern Sudan, paving the way for a potential Blackwater training months later, Blackwater was handed one of the governmentsmission there. In January, the Washington, DC, representative for most valuable international security contracts, worth more thansouthern Sudans regional government said he expected Blackwater $300 begin training the souths security forces soon. The firm was also eager to stake out a role in crafting the rules Since 9/11, Blackwater has hired some well-connected officials that would govern mercenaries under US contract. "Because ofclose to the Bush Administration as senior executives. Among the public events of March 31, [Blackwaters] visibility and needthem are J. Cofer Black, former head of counterterrorism at the to communicate a consistent message has elevated here inCIA and the man who led the hunt for Osama bin Laden after Washington," said Blackwaters new lobbyist, Chris Bertelli.9/11, and Joseph Schmitz, former Pentagon Inspector General, "There are now several federal regulations that apply to theirwho was responsible for policing contractors like Blackwater activities, but they are generally broad in nature. One thing thatsduring much of the "war on terror"—something he stood accused lacking is an industry standard. Thats something we definitelyof not doing effectively. By the end of Schmitzs tenure, powerful want to be engaged in." By May, Blackwater was leading aRepublican Senator Charles Grassley launched a congressional lobbying effort by the private military industry to try to blockprobe into whether Schmitz had "quashed or redirected two congressional or Pentagon efforts to place their forces under theongoing criminal investigations" of senior Bush Administration military court martial system.JUNE – JULY 2007 NEXUS • 13
  14. 14. Blackwater Families Fight Back accountability from the US government," Katy Helvenston, whose But while Blackwater enjoyed its new status as a hero in the son Scott was one of the Blackwater contractors killed, told the"war on terror" within the Administration and the Republican- committee. "Therefore, Blackwater can continue acceptingcontrolled Congress, the families of the four men killed at hundreds of millions of dollars in taxpayer money from theFallujah say they were being stonewalled by Blackwater as they government without having to answer a single question about itsattempted to understand the circumstances of how their loved security operators."ones were killed. After what they allege was months of effort to Citing the pending litigation, Blackwaters general counsel,get straight answers from the company, the families filed a Andrew Howell, declined to respond to many of the chargesgroundbreaking wrongful death lawsuit against Blackwater in levied against his company by the families and asked severalJanuary 2005, accusing the company of not providing the men times for the committee to go into closed session. "The men whowith what they say were contractually guaranteed safeguards. went on the mission on March 31, each had their weapons andAmong the allegations: the company sent them on the Fallujah they had sufficient ammunition," Howell told the committee,mission that day short by two men, with less powerful weapons adding that the men were in "appropriate" vehicles. That wasthan they should have had and in Pajero jeeps instead of armoured sharply disputed by the mens families, who allege that in order tovehicles. This case could have far-reaching reverberations and is save $1.5 million Blackwater did not provide the four withbeing monitored closely by the war- armoured vehicles. "Once the men signed oncontractor industry. Former Halliburton with Blackwater and were flown to the Middlesubsidiary KBR [previously Kellogg, Brown East, Blackwater treated them as fungibleand Root] has even filed an amicus [amicus commodities," Helvenston told lawmakers incuriae] brief supporting Blackwater. If the her emotional testimony, delivered on behalflawsuit is successful, it could pave the way of all four families.for a tobacco litigation–type scenario, where "Private contractors The issue that put this case on Waxmanswar contractors find themselves besieged by radar was the labyrinth of subcontractslegal claims of workers killed or injured in like Blackwater work underpinning the Fallujah mission. Sincewar zones. outside the scope of November 2004, Waxman had been trying to As the case has made its way through the pin down for whom the Blackwater men werecourt system, Blackwater has enlisted the militarys chain of ultimately working on the day of the ambush.powerhouse Republican lawyers to defendit: among them Fred Fielding, who was command and can "For over eighteen months, the Defense Department wouldnt even respond to myrecently named by Bush as White literally do whatever inquiry," said Waxman. "When it finallyHouse counsel, replacing HarrietMiers; and Kenneth Starr, former they please without replied last July, it didnt even supply the breakdown I requested. In fact, it deniedWhitewater prosecutor investigating any liability or that private security contractors did anyPresident Clinton and the companys work at all under the [Pentagonscurrent counsel of record. Blackwater accountability from contracting program]. We now know thathas not formally debated the specific the US government." isnt true." Waxmans struggle to followallegations in the suit, but what has the money on this one contract involvingemerged in its court filings is a series powerful war contractors like KBRof legal arguments intended to bolster provides a graphic illustration of theBlackwaters contention that it is secretive nature of the whole waressentially above the law. Blackwater contracting that if US courts allow the What is not in dispute regarding thecompany to be sued for wrongful Fallujah incident is that Blackwater wasdeath, that could threaten the nations working with a Kuwaiti business calledwar-fighting capacity: "Nothing could be more destructive of the Regency under a contract with the worlds largest food servicesall-volunteer, Total Force concept underlying US military company, Eurest Support Services. ESS is a subcontractor formanpower doctrine than to expose the private components to the KBR and another giant war contractor, Fluor, in Iraq under thetort liability systems of fifty states, transported overseas to foreign Pentagons LOGCAP contracting program. One contract coveringbattlefields," the company argued in legal papers. In February Blackwaters Fallujah mission indicated the mission was[2007], Blackwater suffered a major defeat when the Supreme ultimately a subcontract with KBR. Last summer, KBR deniedCourt declined its appeal to hear the Fallujah case, paving the way this. Then ESS wrote to Waxman to say the mission wasfor the state trial—where there would be no cap on damages that a conducted under Fluors contract with ESS. Fluor denied that, andjury could award—to proceed. the Pentagon told Waxman it didnt know to which company the Congress is beginning to take an interest in this potentially mission was ultimately linked. Waxman alleged that Blackwatergroundbreaking case. On February 7, Representative Henry and the other subcontractors were "adding significant markups" toWaxman chaired hearings of the Oversight and Government their subcontracts for the same security services that WaxmanReform Committee. While the hearings were billed as looking at believes were then charged to US taxpayers. "Its remarkable thatUS reliance on military contractors, they largely focused on the world of contractors and subcontractors is so murky that weBlackwater and the Fallujah incident. For the first time, cant even get to the bottom of this, let alone calculate how manyBlackwater was forced to share a venue with the families of the millions of dollars taxpayers lose in each step of themen killed at Fallujah. "Private contractors like Blackwater work subcontracting process," said Waxman.outside the scope of the militarys chain of command and can While it appeared for much of the February 7 hearing that theliterally do whatever they please without any liability or contracts provenance would remain obscure, that changed when,14 • NEXUS JUNE – JULY 2007