That Democratic 'Land of the Free' (?)

January 29, 2005 10:23 | by Alfred Mendes

Author's foreword: as implied by the query-symbol affixed to the title above, I hold strong doubts as to said title's veracity - the origin of which doubts I can trace to events which occurred when, as a student at Hofstra College (NYU) from 1937 to 1940, I lived with my father in Long Beach, Long Island.

The first event was when, as an usher at the local Laurel cinema during a summer vacation, I ushered three well-dressed men into our first-grade seats in the loge - overlooking the stalls. The obsequious manner in which our manager had greeted one of the three aroused my curiosity, and I was soon to learn that he was the infamous Jimmy Hines, ex-boss of the New York Democratic Party (known as Tammany Hall, which had its roots in the fraternal/ masonic cabals of 1789) - now serving time in a nearby prison on counts of corruption. The other two men had been prison warders!

A second, more dramatic event occurred when, early one morning, the local well-known speed-cop, (Wilbur?) Dooley, pulled up on his Harley-Davidson at the gate of the home of the newly-elected Mayor, Lou Edwards (who was on his way to work), and shot the latter at point-blank range - killing him. It transpired that Edwards had 'horned-in' on the local police widows pension fund - ousting Dooley in the process. Dooley was later convicted of murder and imprisoned.

These two events were now imprinted on my memory as the embodiment of American politics - so much so, that when years later, in Libya, I learnt of JFK's assassination, I, like many of my American associates in the oil drilling industry, was not surprised. Indeed, a number of them were celebrating with raised glasses!

My reason for imposing the above brief autobiographical details on the reader is in the hope that said reader will thus be in a better position to assess the following article...



World War 2 marked a turning point in America's role on the global scene, inasmuch as she was now not only the wealthiest country in the world - but also the strongest militarily. In short, she would now, once again, be able to concentrate more aggressively than before on ridding the world of that thorn in her capitalist side: communism (Marxism, socialism - call it what you will).

On September 6th 1945, in the immediate aftermath of the Japanese surrender, the Koreans In Seoul formed the left-wing controlled Peoples Republic Government (covering all of Korea). This caused America to hurriedly send in its 'occupation forces' two days later, and on the 10th of October 1945 install the US military government of South Korea (known as USAMIGIK), "of whom not a single member spoke Korean" to quote AlfredCrofts, who had been one such member. This openly undemocratic action wouldsoon be rectified when, on February 14th 1946, the Americans installed Syngman Rhee (who had spent 37 years in America) as head of the Representative Democratic Council in Seoul with a number of Koreans on the council who had been collaborators under the Japanese.This finally - and inevitably - culminated in the Korean War of '50 to '53. [1]

Concurrently, in the aftermath of the Japanese surrender in Vietnam, the communist Ho Chi Minh declared independence from its French colonizers on the 2nd of September 1945, leading to infighting between the two. The French now relied heavily on American financial and military aid, which had reached $785 million by the time of the French defeat at Dienbienphu. This, in turn, led to the signing of the Geneva peace agreement on July 21st 1954 which stipulated that the reunification of Vietnam - with elections - would be achieved within two years. However, one month before the agreement, John Dulles had decided that the catholic Ngo Dinh Diem (who had lived in America from '50 to '53) would be installed as leader of the mainly Buddhist South Vietnam. That America was now in control of the situation can be shown by the fact that, in the fiscal year of '57-'58, she bore the whole cost of the South Vietnamese army, and 80% of all other government expenditure. Understandably, reunification would not be achieved. This finally - and inevitably - culminated in the Vietnam War which ended in 1975. [2]

The very similar tactics adopted by America in these two events in the immediate post-WW2 period made it self-evident that such tactics were formative stages of a wider plan of global strategy - which would subsequently be known as their Counterinsurgency Strategy (covered in comprehensive detail by Michael McClintock in his "Instruments of Statecraft: U.S. Guerilla Warfare, Counterinsurgency, and Counterterrorism,

1940-1990". Ref: http://www.statecraft.org/chapter7.html) This title, which, intriguingly, was frequently referred to as the 'Counterterrorism Strategy', was a title of 'convenience'- as it involved the use of military 'Special Forces' working in conjunction with Intelligence Services and trained in the skills of psychological warfare, assassination and torture - who, in turn, would then teach these same skills to their counterparts of targeted (mostly third-world) countries - who, in turn, would be in position to create a state of insurgency if America so desired (as occurred in numerous Latin American countries - such as Chile, Nicaragua, etc.). But, of course, America had another option (which it has used a number of times): enter a country on some specious excuse, thereby creating a state of 'insurgency', which they would then 'counter' militarily - usually under the belated aegis of a suborned United Nations. It is important to note that this said Strategy is inherently non-democratic, inasmuch as it resulted in tactics of a fascist nature, such as (a) the setting up in Vietnam of the 11,246 fenced Strategic Hamlets, into which thousands of South Vietnamese peasants were herded to live therein, under military control; (b) the CIA-inspired Phoenix Program which had resulted in the 'programmed' assassination of thousands of Vietnamese; [3] and (c) the setting up of the so-called Afghan POW camp' at Guantanamo in Cuba, with its concomitant Military Tribunals (which have just been ruled illegal by the US District Judge James Robertson in Washington!). After all, in Germany under Hitler, such camps had been known as concentration camps, and when it is recalled that in the period between WW 1 and WW 2 the American corporate establishment in the form of Walker, Harriman, the Dulles brothers and Prescott Bush snr. had fostered/funded the Nazis through a number of mergers with German companies, [4] then it is surely justifiable to describe said American camps as fascistic.

For proof that this Strategy is still very much alive, one has only to refer to the recent forays by America into Afghanistan and Iraq, ostensibly to 'counter terrorism' - a claim that was effectively exposed as false by the recent BBC 2 programme "The Power of Nightmares" broadcast on November 3rd 2004 - in which it was shown that the Bush administration had 'jumped on the bandwagon' of a deliberately enhanced 'al Quaieda terrorist group' - much of it being a figment of imagination. Simply put: this was but an example of the 'psychological warfare' noted above.

Supplementary to this Strategy were the forming of other bodies equally crucial to the implementation of said strategy - such as the Marshall Plan, NATO with its sibling Western European Union (they were both children of the Brussels Treaty of 1948) - and the frequently-revised Mutual Security Act funding organisation which eventually evolved into the Foreign Assistance Act (FAA) passed on September 4, 1961 by Congress. As a result of this, the US Agency for International Development (USAID), was established by J.F.Kennedy on November 3rd 1961,. As its title implies, USAID was essentially a funding organisation, and as such would thenceforth play a crucial role (see below). In its own words: "The 1961 reorganization of America's foreign aid programs resulted from an increasing dissatisfaction with the foreign assistance structures that had evolved from the days of the Marshall Plan, to which USAID and U.S. foreign assistance policy traces its roots" - adding - "In Asia, USAID's first emphases were on countering the spread of communism".... "a later outcome of the FAA was the Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC) to provide protection assuring United States business against certain risks of doing business overseas" [5] (OPIC funds were under the control of George Soros' Private Fund Management!).

That America is not a democracy is confirmed by the now well-documented fact that for decades now its elections - that essential component of a democracy - have been rigged. This article will now concern itself with the lesser-known fact that the Direct Recording Electronic voting system (DRE), that most easily-manipulated vote-rigging system, is now much more widely used: India, Brazil, Holland et al. (keeping in mind that it all started in America).

There are two main international agencies overseeing e-voting elections worldwide:

(a) The American-based International Foundation for Election Systems (IFES), an "agency for 64 companies offering electronic services worldwide... 80% of its funding from U.S. gov't sources including USAID & the National Endowment for Democracy (NED - formed by Reagan)....Since 1987 IFES has supplied world

governments with election observation and analysis and has developed into one of the world's leading centers of election information and resources.."...Its chairman is William J. Hybl who is also the Chairman and Chief Executive Office of the extreme right-wing group, the.El Pomar Foundation.



And (b) The Swedish-based International Institute for Democracy & Electoral Assistance (IDEA).... "Created in 1995, the International Institute for Democracy and Electoral Assistance (IDEA), is an inter-governmental organization with member states from all continents..... IDEA is financed through contributions from Member States and through complementary funds obtained from a variety of other sources...."



These two agencies, IFES and IDEA, run the Administrative And Cost Elections (ACE), known as the ACE Project. [6]

The Information Technology Association of America (ITAA) is a Californian lobbying firm whose purpose is - in their words - to "create confidence and trust in the elections industry and promote the adoption of technology-based solutions for the elections industry. Repair short-term damage done by negative reports and media coverage of electronic voting. Over the mid- to long-term, implement strategy that educates key constituencies about the benefits of public investments in electronic voting, voter registration and related applications." As exposed, in detail, by Bev Harris and David Allen in their Pay No Attention to the Men Behind the Curtain, this is a case of 'double-speak'. ITAA is, in fact, "a lobbying firm that specializes in getting special treatment for technology companies. This involves the usual influencing of lawmakers to enact tax credits, labor exemptions, and other laws designed to shield these companies from paying their fair share. In this proposal, the ITAA is trying to get hired to provide assistance to Diebold, Sequoia, ES&S, and other voting machine vendors to get the public to accept their products. According to the ITAA, you should never use the word 'lobby,' since it has negative connotations in the mind of the public. Instead you should 'educate key constituencies.'" [7]

ITAA does not confine its activities to America only. Like all the other e-voting organisations/companies noted in the preceding paragraph, it is becoming active on the international scene. One intriguing instance of this was an ITAA-sponsored conference held in Fairfax, Virginia in 1998, at which there were 1686 attendees (of whom, 429 were not American) - including such 'noted speakers' as Margaret Thatcher and Mikhail Gorbachev. [8]

Furthermore, on August 2nd 2004, their President, Harris Miller stated: "Multinational members of our industry must do more than rent office space in Beijing or Shanghai and translate their collateral into Mandarin if they are to earn a share of the $46 billion in Chinese IT spending projected for 2007. Issues such as unique technology standards and restrictions on non-Chinese participation in the public sector market mean U.S. Industry needs to engage China through the U.S. government and other means."..(in plain English, ITAA is telling the US Administration to pressurize China)..."In the case of China, the alternative to engagement is simply concession. Should we fail to ensure our interests vis-à-vis the Chinese market are accurately and vigorously represented, we will have conceded billions of dollars in market opportunity to a handful of growing, government-subsidized domestic competitors".... "This month, I had the pleasure of being present for the beginning of a new ITAA China Committee to help ensure that does not happen. "...." Consider the case of India: A nation that clearly reaps the benefits of international trade, India is just now rolling back key tariffs aimed at protecting domestic firms from foreign competition. But India did not do that in a vacuum. Rather, our industry has been actively engaged with Indian officials on that and similar issues. While much credit goes to other quarters, too, I will reserve a fair share for our members." And on November 11, 2004: "The Information Technology Association of America (ITAA) today praised government officials from the United States and India for their pledges of partnership over two days of bilateral meetings on information security collaboration, hosted by the Department of State November 9-10 in Washington, D.C. The meetings followed an October cyber security summit held in Dehli, India, by ITAA and its sister IT association in India, NASSCOM". [9] No more need be said on this matter!

Following is a list of e-voting funding organisations:

USAID (see above)

DFID Department for International Development (British Commonwealth)

http://www.cpsu.org.uk/downloads/MPD%20Final%20Report.pdf.

SIDA Swedish International Agency

http://www.electionaccess.org/rs/Discussion_Paper.htm




The foregoing is by no means comprehensive coverage of the title's subject matter, but is surely enough confirmation of the fact that America is by no means a democratically-run state - thanks in no small measure to the fascistic nature of its corporate-controlled Administration. And the sooner the bamboozled electorate realises this - the better for the world.

In conclusion: to quote that discerning Fabian politician Beatrice Webb in her booklet covering the Soviet Union, The New Civilisation (written in 1942, a year before her death): "Neither the Prime Minister of the British Cabinet nor the presiding member of the Sovnarkom has anything like the autocratic power of the President of the USA, who not only selects the members of his cabinet subject to the formal control of the Senate, but is also Commander-in-Chief of the American armed forces....By declaring, in May this year, a state of unlimited national emergency, President Roosevelt legally assumes a virtual dictatorship of the United States." This is as true today as it was then.

Post-script: It is of further pertinence to note that ITAA currently acts as the Secretariat for the World Information Technology & Services Alliance (WITSA), which is a consortium of 65 IT associations around the world (from Argentina to Zimbabwe - or 90% of the world's IT market!). Founded in 1978 under its original title, the World Computing Services Industry, "WITSA has a real impact on the global IT environment" (to quote its own somewhat understated words). And the clonal relationship between these twoorganisations is confirmed by the fact that (a) Harris N. Miller is President of both; and (b) ITAA Director, Robert B. Laurence, is Chairman Emeritus of WITSA. [10]

ENDNOTES:

[1] The Free World Colossus by David Horowitz (Hill & Wang 1965)

[2] ibid.

[3] A Bright Shining Lie by Neil Sheehan (Picador 1990)

[4] "Bush Law in the Land of Mammon" by A.J.Mendes, www.bilderberg.org/boneswar.htm

[5] http://www.usaid.gov/about_usaid/usaidhist.html

[6] http://www.cpsu.org.uk/downloads/MPD%20Final%20Report.pdf

[7] http://timbuk3.com/evote14.pdf.

[8] http://www.webcrayon.com/about.asp

[9] http://www.itaa.org

[10] http://www.witsa.org/about