No spin zone: Wrestling with conspiracy theories - Anjum Niaz - Sunday 24th April 2011

I thought I was done with conspiracy theories in Pakistan: What with what’s-his-name – the American gunslinger responsible for three deaths in Lahore and subsequently his Houdini stunt as a skilled escape artist, followed by the locking of horns by two spy chiefs – General Pasha of ISI and Leon Panetta of CIA, I now land in New York and hear America’s top gun rolling in stories of the weirdest kind!
Professional wrestler turned politician Jesse Ventura was venting in an interview with CNN. His host Piers Morgan introduced the former governor of Minnesota as “Hollywood action hero, a visiting fellow at Harvard, and a noted conspiracy theorist.”
Oh boy! What a load of information I picked up in that one hour, making me sit up from my ‘couch potato’ jetlagged position, and open my eyes to every detail the big, muscle man, more like an aging Viking, rattled off. He is a truckload of trouble for the American establishment. He snitches classified information for his TV show called Conspiracy Theories.
So, if you think conspiracy theories consume our living moments in Pakistan, then think again. If we have the likes of Ventura and a free media, by now many so called “hidden hands”, shady politicians, unnamed intelligence spooks and double agents involved in high profile assassinations, financial frauds and corruption would have been exposed.
But the establishments in Third World have a foolproof watertight system that no WikiLeaker can ever penetrate nor can a whistleblower like Julian Assange emerge. Even if someone dared to cross the line in Pakistan, he or she would be eliminated.
But the Freedom of Information (FOIA) law allows citizens in America to have access to the full or partial disclosure of previously unreleased information and documents controlled by the US government. “To sit back like a zombie and accept everything you’re told,” needs to be challenged. Ventura is doing exactly that. From HARP in Alaska which can knock planes out of the air and can control cloud movements, the American government, he says, acts as the policeman of the world by controlling 248 bases it has set up in various countries. “We can get anywhere. We have nuclear missiles.”
He calls USA the FSA (Fascist States of America). “Because if you look at the simple definition of fascism, it’s when corporations team up with organised religion to run a government. I think we’re there.”
Colonise and rule the world is America’s aim. It’s behaving like a modern day Roman Empire. The reason the US is interested in interfering in the Middle East, as it did in Iraq, is oil. “We don’t like Hugo Chavez very much because he nationalised oil. He kicked corporations out of the Venezuela. That’s why we don’t like him.”
America says it wants to give democracy to the world. That’s a lie. “Look at the bad guys we support. Simply because they’re our puppets.” Ventura was in the Philippines the day Ferdinand Marcos declared martial law. He didn’t do it without America’s permission. “We gave him permission to become a dictator because he was our boy, he was our pawn. As long as they answer to our corporations, we’re good with them.”
Going into Afghanistan for “democracy” is not the real reason. The real reason is to lay hands on the huge mines of lithium that have been discovered there. They are worth one trillion dollars. “Lithium is used in every cell phone, every computer and soon to be electric cars.”
All the above conspiracy theories are perhaps old hat. But to hear a former mayor, a former governor, and someone who served in the US Navy for six years accuse former vice president Dick Cheney as the mastermind behind the 9/11 bombing of the World Trade Center is perhaps going too far. Ventura, who claims that he spent three and a half years examining the collapse declares, “When I look at the buildings and how they fall and the way they fell, they couldn’t have come down without being assisted in some manner… it’s my expert opinion as a demolition expert. I was trained by the best the US government has.
I served three years on underwater demolition team.”
Two weeks after 9/11 the diggers found “pockets of molten liquid metal” underneath. “Now if everything took place, 150 floors up, why was there molten metal underneath? It requires 1,000 degrees to melt metal.”
How can 19 “Islamic radicals armed with box cutters taking orders from a guy in a cave in Afghanistan” defeat the US multibillion dollar security system? He also questions how these guys could have maneuvered two planes through the maze of skyscrapers to hit their target.
Similarly, he alleges that William Harvey, who was the head of the CIA’s assassination unit, planned President Kennedy’s killing in 1963. He’s the man who “killed Che Guevara down in Bolivia in ‘67 where they put him up against the firing wall, shot and killed him.” The deathbed confession of Lee Howard Hunt, the man who actually shot Kennedy is already known. Ventura is only reinforcing this fact.
CIA continues as an enterprise of death. So it should not come as a surprise if our top spy master tells his American counterpart where he takes off. But the newspapers in America continue to paint the ISI as a rogue agency. Why don’t we have Pakistani journalists do what the American journalists do best: act as the spokespeople of their government? The Wall Street Journal’s most recent editorial points to that fact. Titled The Pakistan Ultimatum, Much as after 9/11, Islamabad has to choose whose side it is on.
“So Pakistan now demands that the United States withdraw hundreds of American intelligence operatives and special-ops trainers from its soil and stop the CIA drone strikes on Al-Qaeda, Taliban and affiliated terrorists.
Maybe the Obama Administration can inform its friends in Islamabad that, when it comes to this particular fight, the US will continue to pursue its enemies wherever they may be, with or without Pakistan’s cooperation,” is the opening salvo of the editorial.
It concludes by saying, “The Pakistani army was also happy to cooperate with the US when the targets of the strikes were members of the Pakistani Taliban who had their sights set on Islamabad. But the army has been less cooperative when the targets were the Afghan Taliban based in Pakistan or the ISI’s terrorist partners.”
Gen Kayani is defined as a person trying to “burnish his own public image by way of an anti-American tantrum that will pass in time.”
Pakistanis watch out!

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