Mind and Destiny

“I make no pretension to patriotism. So long as my voice can be heard ... I will hold up America to the lightning scorn of moral indignation. In doing this, I shall feel myself discharging the duty of a true patriot; for he is a lover of his country who rebukes and does not excuse its sins. It is righteousness that exalteth a nation while sin is a reproach to any people.”- Frederick Douglass

Location: Delhi, N.Y., United States

The author and his webmaster, summer of 1965.

Wednesday, January 19, 2005

Kill the Messenger

Robert Baer's "See No Evil": "I knew enough about the way Washington worked to know that when it didn't like some piece of information it did everything in its power to discredit the messenger" Baer was a CIA on-the-ground field officers in the Middle East. Bush's surrogates sought to discredit the integrity of any professional with the courage to disagree with his decision to invade Iraq.

John Dean's "Worst than Watergate: "Their look how tough we are posture on everything actually entices terrorists to up the ante towards a worst-case scenario. Indeed, this administration is surely bin Laden’s dream team."

Richard Clarke's "Against All Enemies": "We invaded and occupied an oil rich Arab country that posted no threat to us...We delivered to al Qaeda the greatest recruitment propaganda imaginable." Clarke served under four presidents beginning as an analyst on nuclear weapons under Reagan.

Marine General Anthony Zinni quoted in "Battle Ready": "In the lead-up to the Iraq war and its later conduct, I saw false rationals presented as justification; the underestimation of the task; the unnecessary distraction from real threats". Zinni's credentials include nearly forty years of military service and served as Colin Powell's special envoy to the Middle East before resigning over the invasion of Iraq.

Michael Scheuer's "Imperial Hubris": "The reality is that many of the worlds 1.3 Billion Muslims hate us for our actions not our values. Bin Laden has been precise in telling Americans the reason he is waging war on us. He could not enjoy his increasing level of success if Muslims did not believe their faith; brethren; resources and land were under attack by the U.S." Michael Scheuer wrote "Imperial Hubris" under the pseudonym Anonymous. He was a senior member of the intelligence community with two decades of experience in national security issues.

President Bush: "God told me to strike al Qaeda and I struck them, and then he instructed me to strike Saddam..."

Thomas Jefferson: "He who permits himself to tell a lie often finds it much easier to do it a second and third time, til at length it becomes habitual; he tells lies without attending to it, and truths without the world 's believing him. This falsehood of the tongue leads to the heart and in time depraves all its good dispositions" It has become apparent that Bush and some of his close associates have become afflicted by the " falsehood of the tongue" syndrome.

Saturday, January 08, 2005

Imperial Hubris

Sen. Robert Byrd quotes an Iraqi exile: "Getting rid of Saddam Hussein is one thing...But you won't find any self-respecting Iraqi prepared to cooperate with an American puppet regime."

Anthony Cordesman is a former intelligence analyst with the State and Defense Department, who specialized in Middle East issues. He believes Bush will refuse to give up on his effort to turn Iraq into a docile client state. Cordesman's "Inexcusable Failure"cautions: "all the training in the world will be for naught, if the Iraqi National Guard and Police are corrupt,or view their government as a puppet regime of American imperialist ".

Former senior member of the U. S. intelligence community, Michael Scheuer has two decades of experience in national security issues. While with the CIA, he wrote "Imperial Hubris" under the pseudonym Anonymous.

Scheuer warns: "One of the greatest dangers for Americans in deciding how to confront the threat from al Qaeda lies in continuing to believe... Muslims hate us for what we think, rather than for what we do. We repeatedly hear: ( because they hate freedom ) from senior U.S. leaders. Such a conclusion is potentially fatal nonsense".

"Imperial Hubris" explores why they hate us and why our policies and actions are bin Laden's only indispensable allies. Scheuer quotes terrorist leader al Zawahiri: " Americans are facing a delicate situation in Iraq and Afghanistan. If they withdraw they will lose everything and if they stay, they will continue to bleed to death."

Scheuer emphasizes:" We must recognize that our invasion of Iraq was not preemptive; it was an avarice, premeditated, unprovoked war against a foe who posed no immediate threat but whose defeat did offer economic advantages." He wrote "Imperial Hubris" with certainty that: " al Qaeda will attack the continental U. S. again, that its next strike will be more damaging than 9/11."

Saturday, January 01, 2005

Left Behind

David Gates' article in Newsweek, reports on the new prophets of revelation, and why their biblical "Left Behind" novels have sold 62 million copies. Tim LaHaye and Jerry Jenkins have become America's best selling writers. Seventy one percent of the readers are from the South and Midwest. The "Left Behind" volume, which came out after 9/11 became the best selling novel of the year.

Gates reports: "many critics of the series see a resonance between its apocalyptic scenario and the born-again President Bush's apocalyptic rhetoric and confrontational Mideast policies."

The "Armageddon" volume begins with an enemies list which includes the Antichrist a former Secretary General of the U.N. and the Pope as the Anitchrist's assistant. The "Left Behind" novels show a the common evangelical sympathy for Jews, and claim they exist to be converted and to fulfill Christian prophecy.

N.Y.Times columnist Nicholas Kristof writes :"Left Behind" depicts Jesus returning to heave everyone who is not a born-again Christian into everlasting fire...howling and screeching.

Predicting the apocalypse has been difficult. In 1844, William Miller and tens of thousands of his followers waited for Jesus to appear. Some of these Millerites had given away all of there belongings. The no show was called the Great Disappointment.

The best selling non-fiction book of the 1970's was Hal Lindsey's "The Late Great Planet Earth"; selling 18 million copies. One of the best sellers of 1988 was a booklet called "88 Reasons Why the Rapture Will Be in 1988." Being wrong has never been so lucrative.

Tina Pippin, a professor of religious studies states: "Left Behind" novels" encourage people to see the world in terms of black and white, good and evil, with us or against us." Our nation has been deeply divided by this commercial and political exploitation of religion.