TBR News August 7, 2010

Aug 07 2010

The Voice of the White House

Washington, D.C., August 7, 2010: “I read, stunned, that the floods in Pakistan have been caused by….HAARP! My, yes! And the very same HAARP caused the Haiti earthquake as well. And the Indonesia tsunami/earthquake, too! I always thought it was the Illuminati using Tesla death rays, just like they did on the WTC buildings.

I must say, the Internet is an incredible source for anyone not jabbering on their cell phone while stuffing their face on the other side with fresh, candied hog fat. There is an enormous fund of real knowledge there if only people were interested in searching for it. Instead, they gorge, gabble and stare with vacant eyes at the television set, drooling with glee when ‘American Idol’ or ‘Dancing with the Stars’ comes on.

The unions pushed the wages up so high in this country that the manufacturers had to find cheaper sources of labor outside the country. BP is huge, cuts corners, screwed up in the Gulf and finally fixed their mess. BP did not do this on purpose to give the left something to wail about but predictable, the wailing will go on for another month or so.

There is a difference between greedy carelessness and malice.

The so-called Julian Papers are a joke here. We know who ordered them to be released and anyone out there who believes the official lies that it was a 20 year old soldier who stole and released to the Divine Julian almost 100 k pages of moderately classified papers (all of which reflect the Evil Bush and all of which will help Obama’s plans no end) should be watching FOX News or the Disney channel (which in content are the same thing. (And the hysterically funny Glen Beck looks like an ad for Prozac.)”

The Coming War between India and Pakistan

August 2, 2020

by R. Mohan Srivastava

Historical Background and Present Situation

Background to the nuclear capabilities of India and Pakistan: In 1962 India and China fought a war over disputed territory in the Himalayas. India was generally acknowledged to have been humiliated and to have definitively lost this war. China tested its first atomic device in 1964, launched its first long-range missile in 1966, and tested a hydrogen bomb in 1967. Alarmed, India instituted an emergency nuclear weapons programme, and tested its first device in 1974. China, to counter the new Indian nuclear capability, shared nuclear technology with India’s enemy Pakistan (see Indo-Pakistani wars timeline below). Pakistan, while having developed the capability to test a weapon, refrained from doing so under pressure from the USA, but detonated its first nuclear devices in May 1998 in response to several Indian tests the same month. See Federation of American Scientists’ timeline of Pakistan’s nuclear programme here: http://www.fas.org/nuke/guide/pakistan/nuke/chron.htm

  • At present, Pakistan is estimated to have about 50 atomic fission nuclear devices, and India is estimated to have about 100 atomic fission and nuclear fusion (hydrogen bomb) devices.
  • India has 1.2 billion people, of whom 200 million are Muslim, more Muslim citizens than in all of Pakistan (170 million.)
  • The Indian government is extremely concerned about religious animosities in its population. It is terrified of a religious civil war or of religiously inspired civil unrest. It is desperate to keep its 200 million Muslims happy and feeling undiscriminated against. It can easily fight and defeat its external enemy Pakistan, but not an internal enemy among its own population.
  • The world’s most populous countries are: China (1.3 billion), India (1.2 billion), USA (310 million), Indonesia (234 million), Brazil (193 million), Pakistan (170 million), and Bangladesh (164 million).
  • India is intensely interested in better relations with the USA. The two countries possess the world’s second and third largest populations, a common language (English), the world’s two largest parliamentary democracies, both offspring of British colonialism, and both having Magna Carta and the constitutional rule of law as their heritage. This makes them natural allies.
  • Pakistan is extremely corrupt, has a history of oscillating between military dictatorships and corruptly elected governments, is steadily becoming more Muslim fundamentalist, (financed and instigated by Saudi Arabia,) and is a thorn in the side of the USA, which is rapidly developing warmer and warmer relations with India.
  • The USA has maintained cordial relations with Pakistan only because of needing Pakistan in the 1980s to funnel arms to the CIA-created Mujahedeen in Afghanistan to inconvenience the USSR, and as revenge for the USSR’s support for North Vietnam during the Vietnam War from 1964 to 1975.
  • After the fall of the USSR, the USA lost interest in Pakistan & Afghanistan. Also Pakistan’s explosion of six nuclear devices in May 1998 in retaliation for India’s five nuclear tests earlier that month caused suspension of military cooperation between the USA and Pakistan, the end of Pakistani officer training in the USA, and the breakdown of former military cooperation between the USA and Pakistan. By 9/11/2001, personal military friendships between higher echelons of US military and Pakistani military had lapsed. Pakistan’s military had turned instead towards former Mujahedeen, now ruling Afganistan as the Taliban. By 2001, the Pakistani military and ISI had become infiltrated by fundamentalist Muslims.
  • Following 9/11/2001, the USA accused Pakistan privately of complicity by the Pakistani ISI in the planning and foreknowledge of the 9/11 attack, and threatened Pakistan in the most severe terms of extremely dire consequences if Pakistan did not sever ties with the Taliban, and cooperate by allowing the USA to use its port facilities, its airspace, and its territory to launch a war against the Taliban in landlocked Afghanistan.
  • The USA now in 2010 desperately wants to declare victory and withdraw from Afghanistan under whatever pretext will allow it to save face and not be seen to have lost the war, which is wasting immense amounts of US treasure and costing too many lives, all to no avail.
  • The Pakistani military also wants the USA to leave Afghanistan so it can exert its influence unhindered in Southern Afghanistan (Sunni Muslim Pashtuns,) stronghold of the Taliban with which it has such warm relations.
  • India is also only waiting for the Americans to leave Afghanistan so it can counter Pakistan and exert its influence in Northern Afghanistan (Tadjiks, Uzbeks, Turkmens, and Shiites allied with Iran,) without danger of harming American personnel, military or civilian, caught in the crossfire.
  • Pakistan has been foolish and reckless in relentlessly provoking its vastly larger and more powerful neighbor India. They have fought the following wars, most of them over the disputed and partitioned territory of Kashmir, and all instigated by Pakistan:
  • Indo-Pakistan War of 1947: This is also called the First Kashmir War. The war started in October 1947 when the Maharajah of the princely state of Jammu and Kashmir was pressured to accede to either of the newly independent states of Pakistan or India. Tribal forces prompted by Pakistan attacked and occupied the princely state, forcing the Maharajah to sign the “Agreement to the accession of the princely state to India”. The United Nations was then invited by India to mediate the quarrel. The UN mission insisted that the opinion of the Kashmiris must be ascertained. The UN Security Council passed Resolution 47 on 21 April 1948. The war ended in December 1948 with the Line of Control dividing Kashmir into territories administered by Pakistan (northern and western areas) and India (southern, central and northeastern areas).
  • Indo-Pakistan War of 1965: This war started following Pakistan’s Operation Gibraltar, which was designed to infiltrate forces into Jammu and Kashmir to precipitate an insurgency against rule by India. India retaliated by launching an attack on Pakistan. The five-week war caused thousands of casualties on both sides and was witness to the largest tank battle in military history since World War II. It ended in a United Nations (UN) mandated ceasefire and the subsequent issuance of the Tashkent Declaration.
  • Indo-Pakistan War of 1971: This war was unique in that it did not involve the issue of Kashmir, but was rather precipitated by the crisis brewing in erstwhile East Pakistan. About 10 million Bengalis in East Pakistan took refuge in neighboring India. Because of the impending humanitarian crisis and its own interest in dismembering Pakistan, India intervened in the ongoing Bangladesh liberation movement. After a failed pre-emptive strike by Pakistan, full-scale hostilities between the two countries commenced. Within two weeks of intense fighting, Pakistani forces surrendered to India, following which Bangladesh was created. This war saw the highest number of casualties in any of the India-Pakistan conflicts, as well as the largest number of prisoners of war since the Second World War, after the surrender to India of nearly 90,000 Pakistani police and civilians.
  • Indo-Pakistani War of 1999: Commonly known as Kargil War, this conflict between the two countries was mostly limited. Pakistani troops along with Kashmiri insurgents infiltrated across the Line of Control (LoC) and occupied Indian territory mostly in the Kargil district. The Pakistani government believed that its nuclear weapons would deter a full-scale escalation in the conflict but India launched a major military campaign to flush out the infiltrators. Due to Indian military advances and increasing foreign diplomatic pressure, particularly from the United States, which warned Pakistan in the strongest terms that a nuclear war would be inevitable if the conflict continued, Pakistan was forced to withdraw its forces back across the LoC.
  • In addition, there have been many skirmishes and exchanges of artillery fire across the Line of Control in Kashmir between the forces of both countries.
  • In addition, there have been innumerable terrorist attacks inside India over the years, costing hundreds of lives, including a brazen attack on the Indian Parliament in New Delhi in December 2001 even as the US war in Afghanistan was ongoing. The latest incident was the 2008 attack in Mumbai in which 182 were killed, recently (July 2010) blamed by the Indian Interior Minister on Pakistan’s ISI as the instigator and controller of that operation.
  • In every instance of Pakistani terrorism against India, or where the CIA has received prior information of a planned attack by the ISI or one of the Pakistani terrorist organizations, the United States has instigated a flurry of State Department and high-level military interventions between the two countries in order to avert another armed conflict, which would inevitably spill over into Afghanistan and involve US military forces in a crossfire situation between two powers supposedly both allied with the USA.
  • There are between 40 and 50 terrorist and/or extremist organizations operating in Pakistan with the implicit approval of the Pakistani powers: See http://www.satp.org/satporgtp/countries/pakistan/terroristoutfits/group_list.htm
  • There are three sources of power in Pakistan: (1) The well-educated, wealthy, western-oriented, terminally corrupt, and secularly inclined financial elite,which includes the intelligentsia in law and academia, who regard the rest of their national compatriots with distaste and contempt, and (2) The Pakistani Army, whose lower ranks are poorly educated but whose uppper ranks are well educated and related by blood to the financial elites, and which is pragmatically inclined to treat with the masses of fundamentalist Muslims, and (3) The poorly educated and financially exploited masses of Islamic fundamentalists, who have received their minimal education at one of Pakistan’s 40,000 madrassas (religious schools, almost all funded by Wahhabist Saudi Arabia). Worth noting: In 1947 there were only 189 madrassas in Pakistan. The expansion of fundamentalism and building of madrassas began and accelerated during the dictatorship of supposed US ally General Zia al-Huq from 1977 to 1988.
  • The US Army War College on several occasions has war-gamed  a conflict between India and Pakistan, and in every case it culminates in an all-out nuclear war between the two opponents. The scenario generally goes as follows: India retaliates for a terrorist attack with a bombing campaign inside Pakistan, which then retaliates in kind and also mobilizes its army along the border, prompting India to do the same. Alternatively, India does not retaliate initially, but mobilizes its army and moves it to the border, and Pakistan does the same. Live fire then ensues across the border between the armies, and one side or the other advances into hostile territory. India then begins to push the Pakistani Army back some distance into Pakistani territory, as it has done in every conflict to date, and Pakistan, rather than accept another defeat, uses nuclear weapons against Indian Army forces on its own territory. India then retaliates in kind, using nuclear weapons against Pakistani Army forces inside Pakistan, and Pakistan then retaliates by using nuclear weapons against Indian forces inside Indian territory. The exchange of bombs then progresses from military targets to railway termini and military camps within or next to civilian cities, and an all-out nuclear war against civilian cities results.


  • The Obama Administration in the USA wants desperately  to get out of Afghanistan, but is concerned that this would lead to a takeover of Pakistan by the overwhelming numbers of Islamic fundamentalists in that country. The concern is not for the likely grisly fate of the financial elites at the hands of the fundamentalists, but for the fate of Pakistan’s atomic weapons.
  • There are nightmares in Washington about the possibility of an Islamic Republic of Pakistan doling out atomic bombs to terrorist organizations, and to other Islamic countries surrounding longtime US ally Israel. A nuclear detonation in an American city, with the possibility of more to come, would cause complete chaos and the shutdown of the entire US economy, and in consequence the economy of the entire world. It would cause the shutdown of the domestic banking system in major cities, as well as the international banking system which funnels through New York. Food shortages, power failures, panic, terror, anarchy, and a complete breakdown of civilization are not unlikely outcomes.
  • The financial and governmental elites of Pakistan at present are treated with much dignity and respect by the American government, military, and intelligence community, but in reality they are regarded as corrupt petty oligarchs richly deserving of their ultimate fate of violent extermination by the unwashed masses. A very few of the most powerful among them, who have taken the precaution to liberally grease important palms and make important acquaintances in America, will be given asylum, but the vast majority are expected to eventually perish in highly unpleasant ways. Not a single tear will be shed for them in Washington.
  • Afghanistan is acknowledged as a lost cause, notwithstanding the recent dismissal of General McChrystal for saying so in public. The recent risible announcement of several trillion dollars of mineral deposits being discovered in Afghanistan is a ploy to make withdrawal easier, supposedly leaving the Afghans to enjoy their golden future of marble mansions, swimming pools, and Mercedes-Benz motor-cars.
  • The United States confronts a long-term problem in the disposal of its unneeded stockpile of many thousands of tons of plutonium, at present stored with other high-level nuclear waste at 121 sites around the nation. Treaties with the former USSR and its successor Russia have led to the decommissioning of thousands of ICBM warheads and the stockpiling of their fissile material, together with spent fuel rods from many decades of nuclear power station operation. Proposals to accumulate and bury this waste, which will remain deadly dangerous for tens of thousands of years, under Yucca Mountain in Nevada, have been hotly disputed since the administration of President Ronald Reagan, and appear no closer to resolution.
  • A proposal is allegedly being quietly discussed at the highest levels of the White House, CIA, and Joint Chiefs of Staff, to solve two problems with one stroke, by secretly passing several tons of plutonium to India when the USA pulls its last troops out of Afghanistan and Pakistan. Depending on the isotope of plutonium and the number of neutrons in the nucleus thereof (238 to 242) a transfer of a mere ten tons would be sufficient for India to build an additional 100 warheads (Pu-142) to 1,000 warheads (Pu-238 or Pu-239).
  • The allegedly proposed transfer of fissile material is envisioned to be effected from a commercial vessel operated by the CIA, using as cover the nuclear reactors at the Bhabha Atomic Research Centre in Trombay on the Indian Ocean. After the handover the material would be funneled to secret reprocessing facilities elsewhere within India.
  • It is expected that without the moderating presence of US forces, and if the customary pre-emptive US diplomatic mediation between Pakistan and India is suspended, Pakistan will be unable to resist the temptation to once again provoke India with another massive terrorist attack on the Indian people, military, or government. The timeline for such an event is seen as three years or less from the time when the USA withdraws its last troops and suspends its preventive intervention.
  • As predicted by the US Army War College, if allowed to run its course this will inevitably culminate in a nuclear war between the two nations, in which Pakistan would exhaust all its weapons in bombing Indian cities, and India, with its present stockpile of warheads, plus its gift of fissile material from the USA, would be easily able to utterly and permanently destroy the nation of Pakistan, relieving India of the endless provocations and irritations from its reckless neighbour, and relieving the world of the prospect of an Islamic International Bazaar trading in ready-to-use nuclear devices.
  • Estimated final casualties are 250 million in India and 140 million in Pakistan. Survivors would number 30 million dispersed in rural villages in Pakistan and thereby escaping the nuclear firestorm, and 950 million people throughout India. Generally prevailing winds would be expected to deposit much of the fallout from Pakistan over northern India. Most of the casualties in India might be expected to be in the northern and western tier of the country, along a line from Mumbai through Gwalior then north to Uttarakhand province.
  • The immense cloud of radioactive fallout that could be expected to drift over southern China is seen in Washington as a just reward for Chinese assistance to Pakistan in developing its nuclear programme, and a lesson to others not to distribute nuclear know-how willy-nilly to friends of the moment, or to casually poke chopsticks into the eyes of one’s neighbours.
  • Moreover, due to the fact that all merchandise subsequently arriving in the USA from China would be more or less radioactive for many years thereafter, the US-Chinese balance of trade would improve to a remarkable degree. Given the American people’s desire to live utterly safe lives, the sight of their made-in-China household goods glowing in the dark when the lights were turned off would not be tolerated. Manufacturing jobs would return to America from China, and the US economy would boom.
  • It must also be mentioned that it is sincerely hoped in Washington that the fallout would disperse somewhat before reaching Japan, which would be seen as a tragic occurrence, given that nation’s history.
  • The fallout cloud, moving eastwards, would be expected to largely settle into the Pacific before reaching North America, and even more so before arriving in Europe. Fine particulates would be expected to persist in the upper atmosphere for several years, circling the globe, but in light of the minimal rise in background radiation following atmospheric testing from 1945 through 1963, it is not anticipated that the effects on the vast majority of the world’s peoples would be significant. It is felt that any such deleterious effect would be vastly outweighed by the removal of the threat of Pakistani “loose nukes” being traded here and there, and passed from hand to hand, across the Islamic world from Morocco to Indonesia.
  • While India has never subscribed to the 1970 Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, (at the time, as noted, it was building a bomb to counter Chinese capabilities,) the USA did so, and this provides the problem currently under discussion in Washington. The CIA and Joint Chiefs have a long history of cold pragmatism, in defiance of international law and treaty obligations, while the Obama administration is more idealistically disposed to observe the niceties of morality and legal constraint. The outcome for the world at large, and particularly the inhabitants of the Asian subcontinent, remains to be seen.

R. Mohan Srivastava, formerly with the Department of Applied Earth Sciences, Stanford University, is currently at FSS International, Vancouver, British Columbia

(Reprinted by permission from the Slaughterhouse Informer)

Pakistan issues flooding ‘red alert’ for Sindh province

August 6, 2010

BBC News

Pakistan issued a red alert as floods that have devastated the north-west swept south into the agricultural heartland of Sindh province.

Authorities have evacuated hundreds of thousands of people living near the Indus River as hundreds of villages have been inundated by the flooding.

Prime Minister Raza Yousuf Gilani has appealed for international aid.

The worst floods in the region for 80 years have killed at least 1,600 people and affected about 14 million.

Officials say 650,000 homes have been destroyed, 1.4m acres (557,000 hectares) of crop land has been flooded across the country and more than 10,000 cows have perished.

Helicopters grounded

Pakistan’s meteorological department has predicted further downpours for badly-hit Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa province in the north-west. It is only half-way through the region’s monsoon season.

All the helicopters working in the north-west to deliver aid and rescue stranded survivors have been grounded because of the bad weather, said Amal Masud from the National Disaster Management Authority.

Prime Minister Gilani called the flooding the worst in Pakistan’s 63-year history.

In an appearance on national television he appealed for international help.

“I would ask the international community to support and help Pakistan alleviate the sufferings of its flood-affected people.”

A UN official, Manuel Bessler, told the BBC that with crops swept away by floodwaters, some Pakistanis could be forced to rely on food aid to get through the winter.

He said the immediate priorities for survivors were clean drinking water and medical assistance.

BBC’s Adam Mynott: ‘It’s a catastrophe… and that’s no overstatement’

Some of those affected by the flooding have been critical of the government’s response.

“Floods killed our people, they have ruined our homes and even washed away the graves of our loved ones,” said Mai Sahat, near Sukkur in Sindh.

“Yet we are here without help from the government,” she was quoted as saying by Associated Press news agency.

Anger is growing at the absence of President Asif Ali Zardari, who left the country to visit Britain for talks with Prime Minister David Cameron.

With flood victims bitterly accusing the authorities of failing to come to their aid, the disaster has piled yet more pressure on an administration struggling to contain Taliban violence and an economic crisis.

Pakistan floods affect 12 million
August 6, 2010


The floods first affected the country’s northwestern regions and then spread to the south

About 12 million people have now been affected by Pakistan’s worst floods in 80 years, disaster officials have said, raising previous estimates by three times.

Nadeem Ahmed, chairman of the National Disaster Management Authority, said that the figure only applied to the northwestern Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and central Punjab provinces, with figures from the southern Sindh province not yet available.

Previous estimates had said that four million Pakistanis have been affected, a reflection of the rapidly growing scale of the disaster.

The new figures come as Pakistan braces for yet more rains in areas already badly hit by torrential monsoon downpours that have caused devastation, washing away villages and destroying swathes of agricultural land.

“We’re forecasting widespread rains in the country, especially in flood-affected areas,” Qamar-uz-Zaman Chaudhry, director general of Pakistan’s meteorological department, said.

More than 1,600 people been killed by the floods, which started last week when torrential monsoon downpours hit the north-west of the country.

Swollen rivers are carrying a huge volume of water south, raising fears that further destruction lies ahead. Sindh fears

In Sindh province, half a million people have been evacuated in anticipation of the arrival of the torrent of floodwater.

“We are seeing a number of preparations being made across Sindh province,” Al Jazeera’s Imran Khan reported from the southern coastal city Karachi.

“So far 500,000 people have been evacuated. Nearly 250,000 homes have been destroyed across the provinces bordering Sindh.

“The floods are coming further south. Nobody knows whether the floodwaters will reach Karachi, but severe flood warnings have been issued.”

The poor weather forecasts have grounded helicopters flying rescue missions to affected areas.

US military personnel were forced to abandon flights to stranded communities in the upper reaches of the hard-hit Swat Valley, as storm began to dump more rain on the stricken region, where many thousands are living in tents or crammed into public buildings.

About 85 US military personnel are taking part in the relief activities, along with six helicopters that have been flown over from Afghanistan, where some 100,000 American troops are based battling the Taliban.

Meanwhile 30,000 Pakistani soldiers are rebuilding bridges, delivering food and setting up relief camps in the northwest, which is the main battleground in the fight against al-Qaeda and the Taliban.

Foreign countries and the United Nations have pledged millions of dollars to help reconstruction efforts.

Response criticised

Yusuf Raza Gilani, Pakistan’s prime minister, appealed for international aid during a televised address to the nation after visiting flooded areas.

“Pakistan has been hit by worst floods of its history,” he said. “At this time of crisis I would like to appeal to the international community to support Pakistan to help alleviate the suffering of the flood affected people.”

Criticism of Pakistan’s government has intensified in recent days, with particular ire directed at Asif Ali Zardari, the president, who went ahead with state visits to Europe at the height of the disaster.

The worst affected areas are in red; moderately affected areas are in yellow. Evacuations are under way in the striped area of Southern Sindh province

Zardari’s absence has provoked angry reaction from many of those affected, and the row has intensified debate over his leadership of the country, where the security situation has been deteriorating and corruption is rampant.

“”Our president prefers to go abroad rather than supervising the whole relief operation in such a crisis,” Ghulam Rasool, a resident of the town of Sukkur, said.

“They don’t care about us. They have their own agendas and interests.”

Aid organisations are struggling to cope with scale of the disaster.

Food supplies are running low in some areas and health experts warn that the conditions are ripe for the spread of disease.

Many ordinary Pakistanis have simply been left to fend for themselves in the aftermath of the flooding.

“We don’t have anything, no one has given us even a single penny,” Khair Mohammad, a cattle-breeder who has been displaced by the disaster, said.


Russia struggles to halt lethal wildfires

August 7, 2010

by Rose Griffin in Moscow

The Irish Times –

Russian government troops and volunteers are struggling to contain blazes that have already destroyed large swathes of the country to the south and east of Moscow. A number of strategic sites remained under threat from the fires yesterday, including a nuclear research centre near the city of Sarov in the Nizhny Novgorod region.

Fifty-two people have already died in the fires, the Russian ministry of health and social affairs reported, with hundreds more requiring medical attention. The number of people estimated to have lost their houses has already run into the thousands.

Russian president Dmitry Medvedev began his response to the growing crisis by cutting short his summer holiday, returning to Moscow midweek. He has declared a state of emergency in seven of the most badly affected regions in Russia, namely the republics of Mari El and Mordovia, and the regions of Vladimir, Voronezh, Moscow, Nizhny Novgorod, and Ryazan.

A number of naval officials have also been sacked for failing to respond appropriately to a wildfire which destroyed a naval base in Kolomna, near Moscow. Mr Medvedev has threatened further dismissals if the situation continues to spiral out of control, with both military officials and representatives of local governments potentially in the firing line.

For some of those whose homes and summer houses are threatened by the blazes, though, the government’s response has not been effective enough. Many local residents are fighting the fires themselves, appealing for donations of fire-fighting equipment and volunteers to help try and stop the fires from spreading.

Russian prime minister Vladimir Putin responded personally to an angry blogger who criticised government priorities earlier this week.

“Give me back my bloody firebell and take your phone to hell,” the blogger railed, referring to the replacement of a fire warning system with a telephone, which had not even been connected.

Mr Putin responded to the expletive-laden text by coolly praising the blogger’s literary talents and reinstalling the fire bell in the village in question.

Russia has begun to accept foreign help to deal with the crisis. Italian staff and equipment landed in Russia yesterday, with a number of other EU countries pledging further assistance.

Help was also forthcoming from former Soviet republics; Belarus, Ukraine, Armenia, Kazakhstan and Azerbaijan had all sent equipment by the end of the working week.

The Russian emergencies ministry, the main government body in charge of fighting the fires, reported on Thursday that 24,413 wildfires had broken out already this year, covering at least 712,412 hectares.

While most of these have swept through Russia’s forests, nearly 1,000 have struck peat bogs.

The fires are the latest consequence of a summer of record-breaking temperatures in parts of Russia, which have also decimated crop yields.

The Russian drought has already had a devastating impact on the country’s agriculture, particularly this year’s grain harvest. Mr Putin introduced a temporary ban on grain exports earlier this week and issued orders to dip into reserves, amid fears of significant increases in domestic food prices.

Russia’s heatwave shows no sign of abating, meanwhile, with yesterday the hottest August 6th on record and meteorologists predicting that high temperatures would continue for the foreseeable future.

Snow in Brazil, below zero Celsius in the River Plate and tropical fish frozen

August 6, 2010


For a second day running it snowed Wednesday in Southern Brazil and in twelve of  Argentina’s 24 provinces including parts of Buenos Aires as a consequence of the polar front covering most of the continent’s southern cone with zero and below zero temperatures.

Light snow storms in Brazil were concentrated in areas of Rio Grande do Sul and Santa Catarina. O Globo network aired snow flakes falling in early morning, cars covered with a thin white coating and some roads dangerously slippery because of ice.

In Argentina the phenomenon extended to Northern provinces, geographically sub-tropical while in the Patagonia and along the Andes snow reached over a metre deep, isolating villages and causing yet undisclosed losses to crops and livestock.

The extreme cold weather is expected to peak Thursday dawn with below zero temperatures and even lower with the wind chill factor.

After a harsh weekend, Argentina’s National Weather Forecast Service announced the cold weather is expected to stay until Thursday although it could again reach a freezing peak over the coming week-end.

On Wednesday a northbound cold front hit the Patagonia and central Argentine regions. In Patagonia, minimum temperatures went as low as minus 10 Celsius with even lower numbers in snowy regions, while maximum temps were in the range of zero to 7 Celsius.

Because of the freezing temperatures power consumption set new records both in Argentina and Uruguay. According to Argentina’s Planning ministry, electricity demand reached 20.669 MW at 20:15 hours when most Argentine families are home back from work. Although residential demand was satisfied, hundreds of industries suffered an anticipated blackout.

In Uruguay the power record consumption was reached on Wednesday at 20:45. The lowest temperatures were registered in the north and west of the country: minus 7 Celsius.

In related news, reports from landlocked Bolivia indicate that to the east of the country in tropical areas temperatures plummeted to zero causing “millions of dead fish” in rivers that normally flow in an environment of 20 Celsius.

Santa Cruz governor Ruben Costas said the province was suffering a “major environmental catastrophe” and warned the population not to make use of water from rivers (because of the dead fauna and flora) promising to send drinking water in municipal trucks.

“The last time something of this magnitude happened was 47 years ago”, said governor Costas.


Jobs Picture Worsens With 131,000 Losses; 9.5% Rate

August 6, 2010


U.S. employment fell for a second straight month in July as more temporary census jobs ended while private hiring rose less than expected, pointing to an anemic economic recovery.

Non-farm payrolls fell 131,000, the Labor Department said on Friday as temporary jobs to conduct the decennial census dropped by 143,000. Private employment, considered a better gauge of labor market health, rose 71,000 after increasing 31,000 in June.

In addition, the government revised payrolls for May and June to show 97,000 fewer jobs than previously reported.

Analysts polled by Reuters had forecast overall employment falling 65,000 and private-sector hiring increasing 90,000.

“We’re seeing an economy that’s moving ahead slowly but not creating net on balance a lot of new jobs, and it points to continued expectations the economic slowdown we’ve seen will probably extend another two to three months, if not longer,” said Fred Dickson, chief market strategist at The Davidson Cos. in Lake Oswego, Ore.

The unemployment rate was unchanged at 9.5 percent in July, just below market expectations for a rise to 9.6 percent. The steady jobless rate largely reflected a drop in the labor force as discouraged workers gave up the search for jobs.

Job growth has taken a step back after fairly strong gains between February and April, putting in jeopardy the economy’s recovery from its worst downturn since the 1930s.

Growing unease over the health of the economy is weighing on President Barack Obama’s popularity and hurting the Democratic Party’s prospects of keeping control of Congress in November’s mid-term elections.

The state of the labor market is one of the factors that will determine the timing of the Federal Reserve’s first interest rate rise since reducing overnight lending rates to near zero in December 2008.

Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke has said the U.S. central bank could take steps to further ease monetary policy if the recovery were to falter.

The central bank holds its next policy-setting meeting on Tuesday and the employment report is likely to keep debate alive on whether more easing is needed.

Economic growth slowed to a 2.4 percent annual rate in the second quarter after expanding at a 3.7 percent pace in the first three months of this year.

Work Week, Wages Increase

There were some positive elements in the report. The average workweek edged up to 34.2 hours after slipping to 34.1 hours in June. Employers normally increase working hours for existing staff before hiring additional workers.

Average hourly earnings increased by four cents to $22.59 last month.

“Average hourly earnings, our only monthly proxy of wages, rose 0.2 percent after a distressing no gain in June,” said Cary Leahey, economist at Decision Economics in New York.

“Add that together and it suggests that the liftoff point for GDP is not that bad for the third quarter. No one will lower their GDP forecast for the third quarter based on this report.”

Despite the tepid private sector jobs growth, the pace of layoffs has moderated significantly from the first quarter of last year, when employers were culling an average of 752,000 jobs a month.

Last month, the dominant service sector added 38,000 jobs after June’s 34,000 gain. More disturbing, temporary help services, seen as a harbinger of future permanent hiring, fell 5,600 after increasing 11,200. Temporary employment gains had averaged 45,000 per month from October 2009 to May.

State and local governments, struggling with huge budget deficits, purged more workers last month, combining with mass layoffs of temporary federal census workers to push government payrolls down by 202,000 compared to a 252,000 drop in June.

Payrolls in the goods-producing sector unexpectedly rose in July, reversing the prior month’s decline as manufacturing employment was boosted by auto makers who did not shut down their plants in July for retooling. Manufacturing jobs increased 36,000 after gaining 13,000 in June.

The sector is leading the economic recovery, which started in the second half of 2009. However, construction employment fell 11,000. A strike in the sector reduced construction payrolls by 10,000 last month.

Commercial real estate maturities will peak in 2012 – $350 billion in loans coming due and hundreds of additional bank failures. Bank lending in the CRE market collapsing

August 4, 2010


The commercial real estate disaster is sinking banks on a weekly basis.  Talk of a V-shape recovery is now largely a moot point since we are past the point of a quick and strong recovery.  The question now revolves around what we are going to face for the next few years.  Commercial real estate really is a harbinger of what went wrong in the last decade.  Banks and builders hungry for massive profits overestimated the demand for Starbucks and Macys locations around the country.  After all, you actually need money to spend and many average Americans are struggling just to pay their monthly bills.  The only way commercial real estate (CRE) was going to do well is if we had a booming population of young and wealthier professionals with more disposable income.  Yet that did not happen.

Even though the claim of building and bottom talk is now out there in the open, banks that actually lend the money for these projects have different ideas:

Lending for commercial loans has collapsed.  Even though banks would like you to believe that all is healthy and strong they have a front row seat to the carnage in the CRE market.  And with CRE locations you get an actual real feel of the economic problems we are facing.  Many Americans have pulled back on their spending and without spending many places simply cannot move forward.  Banks are also taking scissors to American credit cards and access to other people’s money is slowly going away.  The CRE market at one point was valued at $6.5 trillion.  Today it is closer to $3 to $3.5 trillion.  The loan amount at the peak was roughly $3.5 trillion so you had a nice equity cushion.  Today, the balance is nearly the same but the value of the collateral has collapsed:

Although you see a slight increase, this is largely due to the massive amounts of government stimulus and bailouts.  The increase on the supply side also has to do with many businesses cutting inventories to rock bottom levels during the dark days of the crisis when the stock market seemed to be at a free fall.  Businesses restocked and this provided a nice little short-term boost but that was it.  Now we are burning through that and realize that we have an enormous amount of unused capacity in our economy.  In other words, there is little need for all the CRE out there in the market.

If we are to carefully examine the bank balance sheet of a too big to fail bank, what we find is that banks are now shifting their energy from funding new businesses to actually investing in the stock market casino. Do you remember any U.S. Treasury head saying this was the actual plan?  Of course not but that is exactly what is happening with the trillions of dollars now backstopping the banking system.

The CRE market is a reason for that reduction in loan amount.  Many of the properties are defaulting and have to face the realization that they are worth a lot less than once thought.  Many of the borrowers bought the properties with optimistic cash flow scenarios that would never materialize.  You can buy a property for cash flow or appreciation purposes.  It looks like the vast majority bought for appreciation and we entered a period where prices crashed.  That is what we are now living through from a poorly calculated bet.

And the reality is we are merely entering the first few stages of the CRE bust with CRE loan maturities coming due:

Here They Come Again!

August 6, 2010
Progressive Review –

A black former governor close to the Clinton says publicly that it’s time to ditch Joe Biden and replace him with Hillary Clinton in 2012. Doug Wilder couldn’t even keep the swallowed-the-canary smirk off his face as he discuss his plan with the somewhat dubious Chris Matthews.

Ever since Obama began stumbling badly, the question has arisen: what will the Clintons do now? Now we have a hint.

As Matthews pointed out, having HRC as vice president would almost force Obama into a co-presidency.

To the Clintons and their pals this may seem like nifty scheme, especially now that the Clinton legend has been largely rewritten by a sycophantic media and Democratic enthusiasts. But the truth is that the Clintons did to American ethics what Ronald Reagan did to the American economy: launched it towards the miserable state in which we find it now.

And while Democrats and the media can happily overlook this fact, the Republican Party certainly wouldn’t if Hillary Clinton ran for president. As a reminder, here are a few points that can expected to be raised during a Clinton campaign:

– She was the first First Lady to come under criminal investigation.

– She was the first First Lady to almost be indicted according to one of the special prosecutors

– As least five Hillary Clinton fundraisers have been convicted of, or pleaded no contest to, crimes, the latest being her 2008 finance chair.

– Testifying before Congress on scandal matters, HRC said 250 times that she didn’t remember, didn’t know, or something similar.

– Three of her close business partners ended up in prison.

– Hillary Clinton’s partner and mentor at the Rose law firm, Webster Hubbell, pleaded guilty to federal mail fraud and tax evasion charges, including defrauding former clients and former partners out of more than $480,000. Hillary Clinton was mentioned 35 times in the indictment.

– In the 1980s, Hillary Clinton made a $44,000 profit on a $2,000 investment in a cellular phone franchise deal took advantage of the FCC’s preference for locals, minorities and women. The franchise was almost immediately flipped to the cellular giant, McCaw.

– Hillary Clinton and her husband set up a resort land scam known as Whitewater in which the unwitting bought third rate property 50 miles from the nearest grocery store and, thanks to the sleazy financing, about half the purchasers, many of them seniors, lost their property.

– In 1993 HRC and David Watkins moved to oust the White House travel office in favor of World Wide Travel, Clinton’s source of $1 million in fly-now-pay-later campaign trips that essentially financed the last stages of the campaign without the bother of reporting a de facto contribution. The White House fired seven long-term employees for alleged mismanagement and kickbacks. The director, Billy Dale, charged with embezzlement, was acquitted in less than two hours by the jury.

– HRC’S 1994 health care plan, according to one account, included fines of up to $5,000 for refusing to join the government-mandated health plan, $5,000 for failing to pay premiums on time, 15 years to doctors who received “anything of value” in exchange for helping patients short-circuit the bureaucracy, $10,000 a day for faulty physician paperwork, $50,000 for unauthorized patient treatment, and $100,000 a day for drug companies that messed up federal filings.

– Two months after commencing the Whitewater scheme, Hillary Clinton invested $1,000 in cattle futures. Within a few days she had a $5,000 profit. Before bailing out she earned nearly $100,000 on her investment. Many years later, several economists will calculate that the chances of earning such returns legally were one in 250 million.

-In 1996, Hillary Clinton’s Rose law firm billing records, sought for two years by congressional investigators and the special prosecutor were found in the back room of the personal residence at the White House. Clinton said she had no idea how they got there.

-In August 2000, Hillary Clinton held a huge Hollywood fundraiser for her Senate campaign. It was very successful. The only problem was that, by a long shot, she didn’t report all the money contributed: $800K by the US government’s ultimate count in a settlement and $2 million according to the key contributor and convicted con Peter Paul. This is, in election law, the moral equivalent of not reporting a similar amount on your income tax. It is a form of fraud. Hillary Clinton’s defense is that she didn’t know about it.

The last thing the Democrats need is that sort of record to defend.

Married to the Clinton Mob

August 3, 2010

by Robert Scheer


Out of respect for privacy, even concerning famous people, I wasn’t going to write about the marriage of Chelsea Clinton to a Goldman Sachs alum and budding hedge-fund hustler with the resources to buy a $4 million loft so soon after graduating from Stanford. Hopefully Marc Mezvinsky won’t follow in the footsteps of his financier father, “Fast-Talkin’ Eddie,” as they called him back in Iowa, a former Democratic House member who just completed a five-year federal sentence for dozens of fraud felonies.

Anyway, Chelsea also worked at a hedge fund, her mother dabbled in banking shenanigans in her Whitewater days and father Bill’s radical deregulation made it a lot easier for financial plunderers to stay on the right side of the law. So the Clintons and the Mezvinskys have a lot in common. I hope their children will do better, and I was going to simply wish them well until I read Tina Brown’s paean to power, “Why America Needed Chelsea’s Wedding,” in the trend-chasing Daily Beast, which she edits.

It was then that I realized that the revival of the Clinton legacy was on in earnest. Brown, a prominent Brit import, is an expert on refurbishing tarnished royalty, as she demonstrated with her gushing tribute to the Clinton wedding as “a happy throwback to the carefree 1990s.” So carefree that no one of importance, certainly not in the Clinton White House, took serious stock of the collapse of hedge funds like Long-Term Capital Management, a harbinger of disasters to come.

In what I assume was not self-parody, Brown stated that “the Clintons are enjoying political rosy-glow syndrome. In the light of what’s happened since—two grueling wars, the implosion of debt, 14 million unemployed … Chelsea’s wedding allowed us to remember all that prosperity, those continuous Clinton surpluses.” But not, as I the party pooper must add, the Financial Services Modernization Act and the Commodity Futures Modernization Act, which enabled the financial bubble that caused those 14 million to be unemployed.

This all reminds me of the pass given that last attempt at American royalty, when the legacy of John Fitzgerald Kennedy came to be whitewashed so that his reckless decisions to invade Cuba and Vietnam were not to be mentioned. One can hear the “Happy Days Are Here Again” Democratic theme song as Hillary Clinton comes to be nominated after Obama has failed to solve the dire economic problems that his predecessors—Bill Clinton as well as George W. Bush—left him.

But don’t dare tag Hillary with anything her husband brought about or even for what Brown calls the “two grueling wars” which Obama inherited and which Hillary voted for and now pushes as energetically as do the top hawks in the Pentagon. “No sticky wars then,” Brown writes, referring to the good old days of the reign of Bill. “Meanwhile, Hillary, pummeled and reviled during the campaign year of Obama worship, is now the popular member of Bam’s administration.” Hillary is never responsible for past adversity but only steeled by it, as are the newest family member and his mother:

“It clearly is an additional bond between these families that Marc and his mother, Marjorie Margolies-Mezvinsky, know something about the Clinton world they are joining with. Marc had to endure the press onslaughts when his congressman father Ed went to jail for fraud.” His mother, a Democrat from Pennsylvania, lost her seat in the U.S. House of Representatives after voting for Clinton’s first budget, but Brown snatches victory from those defeats and personal travails: “There is character in this new family of Chelsea’s and an understanding of the harsh paybacks of public life.”

OK, so I have gone on too long about a column by one preening society writer, but it is irritating that the Clinton parents are getting off the hook while Obama, who is guilty of relying too heavily on Clintonista alums for policy direction, is somehow scorned. Without President Clinton turning the economy over to Robert Rubin, Alan Greenspan and Lawrence Summers, there would have been no financial meltdown. Obama’s cardinal error was bringing Summers and another Clinton acolyte, Timothy Geithner, back into power.

Apologists like Brown gloss over the fact that it was precisely Bill Clinton’s scandal that brought Bush and the Republicans to power. When Brown writes that “the Lewinsky stain, the impeachment dramas, and the Starr witch hunt of the Clinton years seems like a crazy dream,” does she seriously mean to absolve Papa Bill from having brought such disarray into our politics? Can one forget that without that stained dress, Al Gore would have won the Electoral College as well as the popular vote?

Clinton nostalgia is dangerous nonsense, and for Democrats to go down that road is to avoid serious assessment of their own party’s role in the economic debacle that haunts the nation.

From Tampa Bay to Timbuctu: American Drug Lords In The News

August 4 2010
by Daniel Hopsicker

The American owner of record of the DC9 airliner  from St Petersburg busted in Mexico carrying an astonishing 5.5 tons of cocaine was the subject of a drug trafficking investigation back in 1995, we have learned.

According to a DEA report on the DC9 sent to Venezuela’s National Anti-Drug Office,  Frederic Geffon was investigated by US Customs in Tampa, Florida in 1995, after being identified as an aircraft-broker-dealer working with drug traffickers.

Frederic J. GEFFON DOB: 08.02.1948, home address 10316 Paradise Blvd, Treasure Island, Florida, was the subject of an investigation by US Customs in Tampa, Florida in 1995,” stated a DEA report on the highly-publicized DC9 incident in the Yucatan to Luis Correa, the Director of Venezuela’s National Anti-Drug Office. “GEFFON was identified in 1995 as an aircraft-broker-dealer working with drug traffickers.”

Despite the fact that he was no stranger to Federal law enforcement, Geffon was never charged with any crime.  Similar government action—or inaction—occurred with respect to a second figure in the ill-fated DC9 drug move, this time in Mexico.

After being taken into custody, the pilot of the DC9, Carmelo Vasquez Guerra, was—inexplicably and with no explanation—quietly released by Mexican authorities.

When it comes to this particular drug trafficking organization, DTO for short, both nation’s apparently have an official policy amounting to “Catch and Release.”
Something fishy this way comes

The powerful American-led global cartel exposed when a DC9 from St Petersburg Florida was busted in Mexico in April of 2006 carrying an astonishing 5.5 tons of cocaine has been making news from Tampa to Timbuktu.

Since losing the DC9 and its 5.5-ton cargo, The Organization has been responsible for:

Precipitating, according to UN officials, a violent coup in the West African nation of Guinea Bissau, called Africa’s first narco-state.

A Boeing 727 airliner discovered burning the middle of the Sahara, torched after delivering 10 tons of cocaine onto an improvised runway of dirt and hardened sand.

And an official from the Dept. of Homeland Security in Timbuktu, who raised the alarm earlier this year with a claim that Al Qaeda was behind the recent surge of drug trafficking through Africa.

The drug plane cited as proof (SEE PICTURE ABOVE) that Al Qaeda was moving into African drug trafficking was flown by the same pilot, Carmelo Vasquez Guerra, who flew the DC9 from St Petersburg busted with 5.5 tons of cocaine.

He was caught flying a business jet carrying a half-ton of pure cocaine in the West African nation of Guinea Bissau.

And once again, he was released.
Jeb Bush, Republican “Jihadi”

Vasquez Guerra’s flight into Guinea Bissau in the drug plane pictured above was the “proof” an anonymous U.S. Dept of Homeland Security official told reporters, of Al Qaeda’s drug trafficking progress through West Africa.

However, it is clear that unless Al Qaeda operatives have taken to playing shuffleboard in Florida retirement communities and hanging out with Republican “jihadis” Jeb Bush and Mel Martinez– both of whom backed, and were backed,  by the company which owned the DC9 busted in Mexico, flown by the same pilot who flew the West African drug flight pictured above–that the anonymous DHS official was making claims that were without a shred of truth.

The claims were, in other words, pro-active disinformation.

What they were perhaps designed to conceal is an operation revealed by this recent event (about which we will soon hear more):

An airplane from a secretive USAF Special Forces Command recently crashed in the Sahara, bearing a paint job very like that boasted by the DC9 from St. Petersburg which was busted in Mexico with 5.5. tons of cocaine.

It pays to be friends with Vicente Fox

Owning a plane busted with 5.5 tons of cocaine hasn’t resulted in any criminal sanctions for Geffon.

Corroborating allegations of selective prosecution were DEA affidavits filed in Mexico to support a request for  extradition to the U.S. of key personnel from the Mexican currency exchange, Casa de Cambio Puebla, whose top executive, Pedro Alatorre Damy, has been fingered by American law enforcement as a key financier to the Sinaloa Cartel.

Jose Ramon Gutierrez de Velasco, one of the major partners in the Casa de Cambio Puebla exchanges, is the former mayor of Vera Cruz and a close political associate of former Mexican President Vicente Fox.  His family has been rallying to prevent his extradition to the U.S.

His father, Carlos Augusto Gutierrez de Velasco Oliver, sent a letter to President Felipe Calderón claiming his son is the victim of selective prosecution.  U.S. authorities have avoided investigating the Americans who sold the planes to the Sinaloa Cartel, he wrote.

The U.S. admitted in court documents that the American airplane owners knew they were selling planes to  Mexican drug cartels, said Carlos Gutierrez de Velasco in an interview with Mexico City newspaper Proceso.

The buyers are in trouble with the law. The sellers aren’t

“The Wachovia Brotherhood”

The willing participation of America’s 4th largest bank in laundering billions of dollars of drug money has revived interest in a case with a number of troubling and so-far unanswered questions.

When Wachovia Bank paid a $160 million dollar fine last month in a plea deal with federal authorities who had uncovered the bank’s decade-long history of laundering billions of dollars of drug money for Mexican drug cartels, it shone a spotlight on the enduring presence of what may be the world’s most powerful drug cartel.

Big chunks of the drug money laundered by Wachovia was used to buy a fleet of American planes.

At least nine planes came from two St Petersburg aircraft brokers, including the DC9 from St Petersburg Fl caught in Mexico carrying an astonishing 5.5 tons of cocaine in April of 2006.

That plane was supplied by Frederic Geffon, through his still-murky partnership with family fraudsters Brent and Glen Kovar’s Skyway Aircraft.

Curiously, the other St Pete aircraft broker supplying planes to drug cartels, a man named Larry Peters, operates a company which is also called Skyway Aircraft. Although he disavows any connection between his Skyway and Brent Kovar’s, it is such a bizarre a “coincidence” that it has even raised eyebrows in law enforcement in Florida.

In fact, the St Petersburg group appears to possess an apparent inexhaustible supply of “get out of jail free” cards.

“The Shuffleboard Cartel”

St Petersburg FL is a retirement community on Florida’s Gulf Coast, better-known as the shuffleboard capital of the world than as a haven for the American Drug Lords.

Nonetheless, a haven it is—and has been— since the 1980’s, when notorious Iran Contra cocaine smuggler Barry Seal wheeled drugs through a “secure” airport entry point described by his long-time money man as looking like the opening to a giant tent.

This is a perfect description, we later discovered, for The Raytheon Corporation’s general aviation terminal at Tampa International Airport.

Anyone who believes that there are no American Drug Lords, or an American-led drug cartel, needs to be able to answer a few simple questions. Like:

Why isn’t Frederic Geffon in jail

The Conversations with the Crow

When the CIA discovered that their former Deputy Director of Clandestine Affairs, Robert  T. Crowley, had been talking with author Gregory Douglas, they became fearful (because of what Crowley knew) and outraged (because they knew Douglas would publish eventually) and made many efforts to silence Crowley, mostly by having dozens of FBI agents call or visit him at his Washington home and try to convince him to stop talking to Douglas, whom they considered to be an evil, loose cannon.

Crowley did not listen to them and Douglas made through shorthand notes of each and every one of their many conversation. TBR News published most of these (some of the really vile ones were left out of the book but will be included on this site as a later addendum ) and the entire collection was later produced as an Ebook.

Now, we reliably learn, various Washington alphabet agencies are trying to find a way to block the circulation of this highly negative, entertaining and dangerous work, so to show our solidarity with our beloved leaders and protectors, and our sincere appreciation for their corrupt and coercive actions, we are going to reprint the entire work, chapter by chapter. (The complete book can be obtained by going to:


Here is the twentieth chapter

Conversation No 20

Date: Sunday, June 30, 1996

Commenced: 2:11 PM CST

Concluded: 2:23 PM CST

GD: Good  afternoon, Robert.

RTC: Gregory. How does it go with you?

GD: I got a nasty letter from my wife today. For some reason, she wants me to send her money. I haven’t seen her in eighteen years but she still feels I owe her something.

RTC: Are you divorced?
GD:L No She’s a fanatic Catholic and that is not to be discussed. I couldn’t take her so I left. Sorry about that. Mass three times a day, seven days a week. Her priest told me she was crazy. Her father told me, once he got to know me, that if he had known me better earlier, he would have warned me off.

RTC: He is with us?

GD: My father-in-law? No, the Admiral died seven years ago. I liked him but as pretty as his daughter was, I couldn’t stand the fanatic religious face she finally revealed to me. Wanted to bring the boy up as a priest but I talked him out of it. More reason to hate me. He wanted to be a police detective so I called up the local police commissioner, who was a friend of mine, and got him a job. Now he runs the biggest private law enforcement computer system in Germany. Ah, the stories he could tell. Well, he, at least, likes me. He told me he would have taken off the way I did and does not hold this against me. He told her to shove it and left. My God, the bitch ranted at me for a week about that. I mean I was over here but she got onto the phone and I finally had to change my number. Women, Robert, are either at your feet or at your throat. My first wife was very attractive but she married me for money and when I wouldn’t cut loose any of it for her worthless family, she made my life miserable and took off. I envy you your stable, peaceful domestic life, believe me. Moved her hippo mother in, cats shitting all over the kitchen, screaming, filthy underwear in the bathroom and so on. They were doing some insulation work on the apartment and I stuck a load of angel hair spun glass insulation into her bras and panties. There she was, scratching herself frantically in public. That stuff is wonderful. I put some in my dad’s golf socks once and his feet looked like cured hams after 18 holes in the hot sun. Anyway, after that, and the killing of the pussies, she left and I swore I would never marry again but I did. I thought with the little head and not the big one.

RTC: Yes, my life is placid and comforting, Gregory, but yours must have been something a psychiatrist would have delighted in.

GD: I should have taken her out on the boat and chunked her over somewhere. I didn’t but I should have. The second one was even better looking that the first but she was a religious nut. I have met Protestant nuts but not many Catholic ones. It was my luck to marry one. She hid it, of course, but once we were legally wed, the evil secret emerged. I was going to buy her knee pads to keep her from getting callous pads like a camel. Well, I really think I ought to be nicer to my hand. My latest one is just eighteen and very good looking. I am putting her through law school and she will probably leave me but for the time being, all is relative happiness. Unlike the others, this one is very intelligent  so we can talk. Trying to get her interested in classical music. Not ‘A Weekend With Bach’ or ‘Couperin’s ‘messe des Paroisses’ on the Jews’ Harp’ but the real thing. God knows, I have at least a thousand recordings to assuage me in my old age and she is actually beginning to listen to some of them. Well, one hopes but probably in vain.

RTC: This must be your day to confess your sins, Gregory.

GD: Not my sins but the sins of others. My current one started life in a trailer park but has moved outward and upward. Pretty soon, she’ll realize her potential and she will go on to better things but right now, all is fine.

RTC: Bring her with you back here, why not?

GD: This one could charm the socks off the statue of Lincoln. What a politician she would make. Well, enough domestic tranquility. I sent you the latest manuscript on Mueller so once you and Bill have read it, why not give me your comments. For better or worse. I would send it over to Langley but it would take those stone lawn dwarves a year to get past the second page. Well, the bell just went off on the oven so the roast baby is probably ready for the table.

RTC: I hope you are jesting, Gregory. If they are listening, you might have unexpected visitors.

GD: Oh yes, about a month after they hear this. At any rate, enjoy yourself and I’ll get back to you tomorrow.

(Concluded at 2:23 PM CST)

Dramatis personae:

James Jesus Angleton: Once head of the CIA’s Counterintelligence division, later fired because of his obsessive and illegal behavior, tapping the phones of many important government officials in search of elusive Soviet spies. A good friend of Robert Crowley and a co-conspirator with him in the assassination of President Kennedy

James P. Atwood: (April 16, 1930-April 20, 1997) A CIA employee, located in Berlin, Atwood had a most interesting career. He worked for any other intelligence agency, domestic or foreign, that would pay him, was involved in selling surplus Russian atomic artillery shells to the Pakistan government and was also most successful in the manufacturing of counterfeit German dress daggers. Too talkative, Atwood eventually had a sudden “seizure” while lunching with CIA associates.

William Corson: A Marine Corps Colonel and President Carter’s representative to the CIA. A friend of Crowley and Kimmel, Corson was an intelligent man whose main failing was a frantic desire to be seen as an important person. This led to his making fictional or highly exaggerated claims.

John Costello: A British historian who was popular with revisionist circles. Died of AIDS on a trans-Atlantic flight

James Critchfield: Former U.S. Army Colonel who worked for the CIA and organizaed the Cehlen Org. at Pullach, Germany. This organization was filled to the Plimsoll line with former Gestapo and SD personnel, many of whom were wanted for various purported crimes. He hired Heinrich Müller in 1948 and went on to represent the CIA in the Persian Gulf.

Robert T. Crowley: Once the deputy director of Clandestine Operations and head of the group that interacted with corporate America. A former West Point football player who was one of the founders of the original CIA. Crowley was involved at a very high level with many of the machinations of the CIA.

Gregory Douglas: A retired newspaperman, onetime friend of Heinrich Müller and latterly, of Robert Crowley. Inherited stacks of files from the former (along with many interesting works of art acquired during the war and even more papers from Robert Crowley. Lives comfortably in a nice house overlooking the Mediterranean.

Reinhard Gehlen: A retired German general who had once been in charge of the intelligence for the German high command on Russian military activities. Fired by Hitler for incompetence, he was therefore naturally hired by first the U.S. Army and then, as his level of incompetence rose, with the CIA. His Nazi-stuffed organizaion eventually became the current German Bundes Nachrichten Dienst.

Thomas K. Kimmel, Jr: A grandson of Admiral Husband Kimmel, Naval commander at Pearl Harbor who was scapegoated after the Japanese attack. Kimmel was a senior FBI official who knew both Gregory Douglas and Robert Crowley and made a number of attempts to discourage Crowley from talking with Douglas. He was singularly unsuccessful. Kimmel subsequently retired and lives in retirement in Florida

Willi Krichbaum: A Senior Colonel (Oberführer) in the SS, head of the wartime Secret Field Police of the German Army and Heinrich Müller’s standing deputy in the Gestapo. After the war, Krichbaum went to work for the Critchfield organization and was their chief recruiter and hired many of his former SS friends. Krichbaum put Critchfield in touch with Müller in 1948.

Heinrich Müller: A former military pilot in the Bavarian Army in WWI, Müller  became a political police officer in Munich and was later made the head of the Secret State Police or Gestapo. After the war, Müller escaped to Switzerland where he worked for Swiss intelligence as a specialist on Communist espionage and was hired by James Critchfield, head of the Gehlen Organization, in 1948. Müller subsequently was moved to Washington where he worked for the CIA until he retired.

Joseph Trento: A writer on intelligence subjects, Trento and his wife “assisted” both Crowley and Corson in writing a book on the Russian KGB. Trento believed that he would inherit all of Crowley’s extensive files but after Crowley’s death, he discovered that the files had been gutted and the most important, and sensitive, ones given to Gregory Douglas. Trento was not happy about this. Neither were his employers.

Frank Wisner: A Founding Father of the CIA who promised much to the Hungarian and then failed them. First, a raging lunatic who was removed from Langley, screaming, in a strait jacket and later, blowing off the top of his head with a shotgun.

Robert Wolfe: A retired librarian from the National Archives who worked closely with the CIA on covering up embarrassing historical material in the files of the Archives. A strong supporter of holocaust writers.

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