the jig is up: the New York Daily News has
got my number, and I might as well confess. According
to the News:
sent spies from Canada to New York and Washington this
month to snoop and stir up anti-war demonstrations,
according to a government report obtained by the Daily
We're busted! We're forced to admit that all those demonstrators
in San Francisco alone – were really foreign
agents, spies sent in from Canada to "stir up"
the American people. I confess! My real name is Uday
Raimondo, and you only thought I was Italian.
According to this "classified document":
"A source identified as a member
of the Iraqi opposition told U.S. agents that Iraqis
in Canada were ordered to recruit Arabs and other foreigners
for espionage missions in the U.S., the report said.
The Iraqi Embassy in Ottawa sent operatives to New York
and Washington with instructions to 'intensify spying
activities and to carry out anti-U.S. demonstrations
to stop a war against Iraq,' the report said. The report
said the Iraqis were willing to spend 'large sums' to
back the effort."
So where's my share of these
"large sums"? If those skinflint Iraqis think
they're going to get away with not giving me the "large
sums" I deserve, they have another thing coming!
It's pathetic, really, to contemplate
the sheer stupidity of the U.S. propaganda effort: the
War Party is so inept. Here they've had all these
months – nay, years! – and who knows how many billions
in tax dollars to come up with a set of lies that makes
some minimal amount of sense. And what happens? Do they
really expect us to believe this crap?
Aside from the obvious point that the
American people hardly need Iraqi spies to be "stirred
up" over Bush's headlong rush to catastrophe, the
dead giveaway is the "source" of this alleged
story, an anonymous "member of the Iraqi opposition."
These are the same folks whose fearless leader, Ahmed
Chalabi, a former banker, is a convicted embezzler who
ran off with suitcases full of his depositors' cash.
Now that's what I call a reliable "source."
Chalabi, by the way, is now suckling at the breast of
the U.S. taxpayers.
anyone who stands up to oppose them is the one and only
tactic of the War Party, but it's somewhat heartening
to note how bad they are at it. Susan Sarandon an Iraqi
agent? Good luck trying to pull off that one.
they can always fall back on the old red-baiting gambit,
a tried-and-true technique that worked well in the cold
war era. As the antiwar movement started to take off,
a veritable torrent of articles appeared in venues as
various as National
Weekly, detailing the role of the formerly
obscure Workers World Party in organizing recent
demonstrations. Glenn Reynolds, a law professor whose
"warblog" has been relentlessly promoted by
has been relentlessly
flogging this dead horse:
doesn't get it, so I'll try to speak very slowly: Antiwar
protesters aren't Communists by definition. But A.N.S.W.E.R.
and the WWP basically are. (And of the extra-nasty Stalinist
variety.) Communists are, in my opinion, as bad as Nazis:
mass murder, totalitarianism, etc. (And calling them
'Marxists' instead doesn't fool anyone.)
"Going to a march organized
by Communists doesn't make you a Communist, any more
than going to a march organized by Nazis makes you a
Nazi. But knowingly going to either one makes you icky.
And calling it McCarthyism when people point that out,
or point out that the Communists really are Communists,
makes you either dishonest, or stupid.
"Clear enough? … It's not okay
to be in bed with Stalinists or Hitlerites."
Unless you happen to be for the
war, in which case we're not supposed to notice that
put out by pro-war European heads of state contains
the name of one prominent Stalinist, and at least one
fellow-traveler. The Stalinist is Leszek Miller, Poland's
Prime Minister, formerly a Politburo member of the Polish
United Workers Party (PUWP), the Moscow-loyal Quislings
kept in power by the Red Army. And we aren't talking
about one of those "reform"-minded Gorbachev-style
"soft" Stalinists. Anne
Applebaum's profile of the neo-Stalinist who signed
his name to a statement entitled "Europe and America
Must Stand United" is instructive:
"These days he smiles a lot,
and has studiously learnt to speak passable English.
In a previous incarnation (I first met him about 12
years ago) he smiled less. At that time he was a member
of the Politburo of the Polish Communist party, and
was best known as a member of the party's 'beton' wing – concrete
blockheads, for lack of a better translation – who stood
solidly in opposition to democratic reforms. As late
as March 1990 a year after Miller and the Polish Communist
party were both defeated in elections he stated that
'the withdrawal of Soviet troops from Poland will do
no one any good.'"
To read the ringing phrases of the unity
statement and recall the career of comrade Miller is
to induce a dizzying cognitive dissonance:
"The real bond between the United
States and Europe is the values we share: democracy,
individual freedom, human rights and the Rule of Law.
These values crossed the Atlantic with those who sailed
from Europe to help create the U.S.A. Today they are under
greater threat than ever."
Comrade Miller fought off the rising
tide of freedom as long as he could. In 1991, he spent
his summer vacation in the Crimea, where, as Applebaum
"He just happened to share a
hotel with Boris Pugo and Gennady Yanayev, two of the
leaders of the Moscow putsch against Gorbachev. The
putsch took place a few days after that holiday ended.
Had it succeeded, Miller might well have become prime
minister of Poland a good deal earlier."
Ah, but the timing was just right, from
the War Party's perspective. Comrade Miller came to
power just in time to act as a prop in the new bosses'
One of the big problems with red-baiting
in the post-communist era is that many of the "former"
Communists, especially in Europe, merely switched sides
when the Soviet Empire imploded. Miller, assiduously
courted by British Prime Minister Tony Blair, led his
nation into the NATO alliance. He has also led a crackdown
on the "free" media, recentralized the economy,
rolled back privatization, increased Polish dependence
on Russian energy supplies by canceling a contract with
Norway, and shamelessly feathered his own nest in the
How dare this hypocrite sign a statement
in support of the United States that declares its fealty
to "individual rights" and "the Rule
of Law"! In Comrade Miller's Poland, the lone independent
daily newspaper, Rzeczpospolita, is being harassed
by the police: the paper's chairman and deputy chairman
have been placed under "police observation,"
according to Applebaum. Their passports have been confiscated,
and they are not allowed to leave the country. Just
like in the old days….
Reynolds opines that "it's not okay to be in bed
with Stalinists" – so why isn't he calling for
expunging Comrade Miller's name from the "unity"
declaration? Or isn't he sufficiently "icky"?
Typically behind the curve, Reynolds
and his fellow red-baiters simply ignore the real story
on the antiwar movement: that it is growing, by leaps
and bounds, far beyond the ability of minuscule sects
like WWP to control it. You can read all about that,
however, in my article on the burgeoning opposition
to Bush's war in the upcoming issue of The American
Conservative. For now, let's consider how this seeming
anomaly – a hardcore Stalinist joining Blair and Bush
in a new version of the Warsaw Pact – came to pass.
"Democratic Left" party of Poland, headed
up by Comrade Miller and other veterans of the Soviet
era, enjoys particularly warm fraternal relations with
the British Labor Party. The fall of the Third (Communist)
International, headquartered in the East, left Poland's
reds without a foreign lodestar. But not for long. The
advance of the EU, and, behind it, the Second
(Socialist) International – where the Blairites
and Miller's party come together – has the Polish commies'
gaze fixed on the rising power in the West. Applebaum
"One of the first things Miller
did, on taking office, was to send his foreign minster
off to Brussels to concede every single point under
dispute in the Polish-EU accession agreements. The gnomes
of Brussels will have noted, approvingly, that this
is not a government much interested in saving any aspects
of Polish sovereignty. Whether this fanatical subordinacy
derives from Moscow's desire for access to Western European
markets, via its pliable Polish partners, or whether
it comes out of habit, is a matter for speculation.
'We're so used to taking orders from Moscow, we'll be
good at taking them from Brussels,' one leading member
of Miller's ex-Communist party once quipped."
It should come as no surprise that the
"ex"-Communist leaders of the formerly captive
nations should be so eager for re-imprisonment – and
not only their own. The Soviet system kept them in power,
and provided plenty of perks and material privileges;
their new bosses do the same. The Empire of the West
functions largely in the same manner as the Soviets
once did – and often with the cooperation of the same
Chalmers Johnson points out in his book, Blowback,
South Korea's 1980 Kwangju
rebellion – and its demise – was in no way different
from the bloody crushing of the 1956
Hungarian uprising against the Soviets. In 1980,
a South Korea general blocked democratic elections with
a coup, and imposed martial law; South Korean forces,
withdrawn from the DMZ, bayoneted student protestors.
Johnson shows, quoting recently-released
cables to and from then-U.S. ambassador William J. Gleysteen,
that the U.S. coordinated the crushing of the rebellion
just as surely as Imre
Nagy and his fellow freedom-fighters were rolled
over by the Red Army and its Hungarian accomplices.
In the new world order George W. Bush
and Tony Blair are building for us, as in the bygone
days of the Warsaw Pact, any country that steps out
of line, whether it be Iraq, Korea, or some future victim,
will be made an example of. Iraq's subjugation is meant
as a lesson to any nation that dares take the idea of
its own sovereignty too seriously.
the new boss: same as the old boss.
the 1980s, Hungary’s Prime Minister Peter Medgyessy, another
signer of the pro-war "unity" statement, was finance minister
and also deputy prime minister in the Communist government.
But Medgyessy’s complicity with totalitarianism didn’t end
there: after his election, in May, came the
news that he served as a secret agent for the Soviet
era Hungarian intelligence service – which, like the Stasi secret police
apparatus in East Germany, was under the direct control of
reds, and theirs: the tiny Workers World Party, on the one
hand, and the Prime Ministers of two East European countries,
who head up large left-wing parties, on the other. The difference
is that ours – the marginal group of misfits who uphold the
Leninist legacy in America – have never held state power in
this country, and never will. Theirs, on the other hand, have
the blood of millions on their hands.
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