Former FBI agent and whistleblower-extraordinaire, Coleen Rowley, and I briefly discuss: "Secret Assault on [supposed] Terrorism Widens on Two Continents" -

Tom Usher wrote or added | Coleen Rowley [
ki/Coleen_Rowley] wrote the following lead-in to this NYT article:

"This article is worth reading but note how many anonymous Pentagon and CIA sources are "leaking" secret, classified information throughout this NY Times story! In fact there would be no news stories on the wars without massive and officially sanctioned leaking that is theoretically just as illegal as what PFC Bradley Manning is alleged to have done.

"And yet no Pentagon spokesman freaks out, threatening the New York Times with prosecution and worse.

"Why is Bradley Manning facing a 50 year sentence while Scooter Libby was pardoned when they did the same thing, leaked classified information? (Actually Libby violated an even more serious and explicit law protecting the identities of American CIA operatives than any laws that it is alleged that PFC Manning broke.)

"The main difference as to these two types of "leaking" lies only in the power equation of those taking orders from the top, like Scooter Libby, whose mission is to shape the propaganda in order to keep war momentum going and those at the bottom of the power equation who are often motivated just to get the truth out and/or to call public attention to waste, fraud, abuse, illegality or serious risk to public safety."
Wow, Coleen nailed it there!

Tom Usher

Let me add that this whole piece is clearly designed to speak to swing voters in America who have leaned toward falling for the line that the Republicans are somehow better at protecting the US when, in fact, it's been the Democrats who've taken the US to war the most and done the most damage worldwide. (That's not the kind of credit I want.)

Tom Usher

"Yemen is a testing ground for the "scalpel" approach Mr. Brennan endorses. Administration officials warn of the growing strength of Al Qaeda's affiliate there, citing as evidence its attempt on Dec. 25 to blow up a trans-Atlantic jetliner using a young Nigerian operative."

Oh, well, do you really believe there were no false-flag aspects to that whole "Dec. 25 ... trans-Atlantic jetliner" affair? Try reading or listening to what the eye-witnesses had to say, none of which has been shot down by the government – just hushed up in the mainstream media is all.

Tom Usher

"The initial American strike in Yemen came on Dec. 17, hitting what was believed to be a Qaeda training camp in Abyan Province, in the southern part of the country."

Note that it doesn't say "hitting a Qaeda training camp" but rather "hitting what was believed to be a Qaeda training camp." In other words, they could have killed a whole bunch of innocent people. If you go along with that, you're sick and headed for Hell. Really!

Tom Usher

As it turned out, they were mostly innocents. So, why do we have this system when we know it kills innocents? Who's not standing up against it?

Tom Usher

"... a senior [White House] counterterrorism official .... [said] comparing the nascent Yemen campaign with American drone strikes in Pakistan was unfair, since the United States has had a decade to build an intelligence network in Pakistan that feeds the drone program."

Unfair? It's unfair to complain about killing more innocents where the US hasn't had as much time to create "cover"? Besides, we don't believe that there haven't been huge numbers of unreported innocents killed in Pakistan. In fact, we've heard about hundreds of innocent Pashtuns being killed in Pakistan and Afghanistan.

Tom Usher

"It is still not clear why Mr. Shabwani, the Marib deputy governor, was killed. The day he died, he was planning to meet members of Al Qaeda's Yemeni branch in Wadi Abeeda, a remote, lawless plain dotted with orange groves east of Yemen's capital."

Uh, if he had been successful in his talks, the US wouldn't have been in such a great position for taking over the Yemeni government as planned.

Tom Usher

"As a test case, the strikes have raised the classic trade-off of the post-Sept. 11 era: Do the selective hits make the United States safer by eliminating terrorists? Or do they help the terrorist network frame its violence as a heroic religious struggle against American aggression, recruiting new operatives for the enemy?"

Oh please, 9/11 was an inside job to some degree. Everyone knows that even though a whole bunch of American lefties refuse to admit it (because they hate Islam because Islam hates them). Just make sure that if you're pro-Palestinian you don't focus on all the things the vast majority of Palestinians hate about libertinism. Hush-hush.

Regardless, the Military-Industrial Complex, banksters, corporatists, plutocrats, etc., make billions off all the trafficking in whatever: arms, drugs, slaves, you name it. Everyone has known all along that the US has created enemies so it can fight to take territory to control everything. It's Empire. Nothing's change in that regard since before the Sumerians.

Tom Usher

"Al Qaeda has worked tirelessly to exploit the strikes, and in Anwar al-Awlaki, the American-born cleric now hiding in Yemen, the group has perhaps the most sophisticated ideological opponent the United States has faced since 2001."

Wow, could the most die-hard twisting Zionists neocon have written that better? Did a die-hard twisting Zionists neocon write it?

Be afraid Americans. Be terribly afraid of Anwar al-Awlaki. He's the new Osama bin Laden, as if Osama bin Laden wasn't the creation of the CIA – a controlled agent. He most certainly was.

There are many people who believe that Anwar al-Awlaki is totally a double agent and that what gets out about him is completely controlled for the propaganda impact it has upon gullible, naive, uneducated, uninformed, disinterested Americans — could be, right?

Frankly, it's way beyond the wink-wink stage. Any Americans who are for the Empire are out of the closet imperialists whether they want to be or not. How can it be otherwise?

You are citizens of Rome, Babylon, the Beast. Wake up.

Tom Usher

Let me just wrap up here by pointing out how disastrous the US policy was in Central America, yet here we are with Obama being a complete idiot bringing in the worst of the worst to exercise the "El Salvador Option" globally.

Obama is already well into being a clear war criminal.

George W. Bush brought the Central American tactic to Iraq. That's what the Surge was, in case you didn't know. It was paying groups to go against their own – talk about evil! — Death Squads, disappearing people, torture, etc.

This is why the "Ugly American" is difficult for the rest of us to live down.

Anti-Zionist Jews are worried about being lumped in with Zionists when the world turns in wrath upon the Zionist Project. Well, I've seen people calling for death to all Americans no matter how anti-imperial those Americans may be.

The sooner the American people wake up and put a stop to all of this evil-empire building the better. Build an empire of good instead. That one I could support.

Coleen Rowley

The complicity of we ugly Americans who have gone along with the killings of civilians, torture and other war atrocities is going to require a lot of explaining. I don't think there's a way to flee the problem and I constantly question if I'm doing enough to educate more people about this wrongdoing that we are complicit in. I constantly wonder if there's something else I'm missing that can be done. We just got back from one of our weekly peace vigils, standing on the busiest intersection in Burnsville, MN with peace signs next to our Congressman's office and near the Marine and Army recruiting centers. In a bid to get people to think, our newest banner says "How's the WAR ECONOMY working for you?" I know the mothers of three soldiers who have died in IraqAfPakisNam and I know 3 or 4 more young men who have been sent to fight and to kill and/or be destroyed in some way or killed themselves.

The simple fact is if more people cared, it would come to an end, it would have to end.

Tom Usher

There is power in truth. That's why the liars like to cover it up and snuff it out.

There you were, Coleen, an FBI agent who, I believe, was idealistically (a good thing) wanting to preserve, protect, and defend the Constitution, with its Bill of Rights, against those who would, and do, harm to others, which others mean no harm but just want to get on and to survive in some semblance of peace and harmony. Yet, when you tried to do your job, likely by the book, others who thwarted you ended up with promotions, etc.

Your story alone should have been enough to stimulate the whole people to action — changing hearts and minds enough to put out the criminal cabal. Why didn't it? As you say, the people's lack of care at this point is their complicity.

I hate to curse people. I don't think I'm doing that by saying this. Their lack of care truly is a form of ignorance, but it isn't very excusable.

You mentioned on the thread on your wall that you've put your foot in your mouth before. I've done the same. I don't think there's a soul who hasn't. However, whatever mistakes you're making now, you're making them while deeply and compassionately caring about the people of the whole world. That's of huge significance. That separates you from other mistake-makers – the lack-of-caring crowd, the complicit crowd. In my book, you are not complicit. You are not an Ugly American. You are trying to be one standing in the gap for the land and people.

The FBI and CIA and the rest have had in them others such as you. Unfortunately, those agencies have never been headed by people such as you. I don't think they can be because they were conceived and designed with Empire in mind, unbeknownst at the time to the likes of us.

I had always thought that one of the great things about the US was that it was anti-Empire at heart and only occasionally screwed up. My reading of alternative/revisionist histories has disabused me of that position. I believe there were huge closet-imperialists of a sort all along and that they've gotten their way mostly, albeit under the wicked-banking model that is the private Federal Reserve so closely linked by oligarchical families to the European-banking centers.

The most important thing we can do is to not stop speaking out. We have our different approaches, but speaking out is in general always better than not.

Have you seen Bill Still's latest video: "The Secret of Oz":

I'm actually for a moneyless society and believe humanity will get there; however, Bill's video goes a long way in peacefully stripping the banksters of their control and hence corporatist war-powers. I recommend you watch it and share it and such. I learned a great deal from his first couple of videos on the subject – more on economics and banking history in a nutshell than from any other source. He deserves credit for his yeoman-like effort.

Peace to you, Coleen,


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  • Tom Usher

    About Tom Usher

    Employment: 2008 - present, website developer and writer. 2015 - present, insurance broker. Education: Arizona State University, Bachelor of Science in Political Science. City University of Seattle, graduate studies in Public Administration. Volunteerism: 2007 - present, president of the Real Liberal Christian Church and Christian Commons Project.
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