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-        Belgian Court Ruling Saying Sharon Can Be Tried as War Criminal is the Biggest Blow Ever to the "New World Order" - Israeli Gov't Reaction Reveals Global Power Play Over Iraq

-         Global Coalition Shatters, Resistance Mounts

-         Fangs, Rage and Fury of Administration Signal Deepening Danger

The Fig Leaf Comes Off

by Michael C. Ruppert

Copyright 2003, From The Wilderness Publications, www.fromthewilderness.com. All Rights Reserved. This story may NOT be posted on any Internet web site without express written permission. Contact admin@copvcia.com. May be circulated, distributed or transmitted for non-profit purposes only

Feb. 13, 2003, 2330 PST, (FTW) - The clearest signal, among many, of a major fragmentation of the global economic power bloc that had until recently supported the Bush Administration came today when a Belgian court ruled that, after he leaves office, Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon may be prosecuted for war crimes. The charges stem from his role as Israeli Defense Minister in facilitating a bloody 1982 massacre of hundreds of Palestinian refugees by the Lebanese Christian Phalange militia at the Sabra and Shatilla camps in Israeli-occupied territory. Other recent signals of a massive global break up include efforts by three NATO members to block NATO support for Turkey once the invasion of Iraq begins, a lawsuit filed today by members of the U.S. Congress seeking an injunction to prevent military action against Iraq, a resolution introduced in the House of Representatives seeking to revoke the war powers given to President Bush after 9-11, the refusal of some British military reservists to be called up for deployment to the Middle East, growing international refusals by first responders and military personnel to receive controversial vaccinations, and even open opposition from British and American intelligence agencies.

 In response, the administration has bared it fangs, revealed its rage and - as described in some press stories - expressed its "fury" at former allies. All of these signs taken together are ominous because they reveal an administration that is out of control, groping, and fundamentally lacking in the operational skills to behave as a world manager. Each new sign of resistance produces only more muscle flexing as the world inches closer to a replay of 1914, but with a different cast. The bottom line is that Europe is quietly demonstrating power with increasing success every time the Bush Empire screws up. In response, the Empire inches closer to simultaneous overt military aggression on two or more fronts. This is the only skill which it really possesses.

ARIEL SHARON

A flurry of stories released today by the Associated Press, The New York Times,  in Europe and in Israel disclosed that a Belgian court had ruled that Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon, previously exempted from prosecution under Belgian law for war crimes, could be tried as a war criminal after he left office. The ruling came after a court decision last year dropped a lawsuit against Sharon by Palestinian survivors on the grounds that he was a sitting head of state and not in Belgium at the time.

The instant response from Israeli Foreign Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was explosive. Quoted in stories by the Times Netanyahu described the Belgian decision as, "an affront to truth, justice, and the right of the state of Israel to defend itself against terrorism."

"We in Israel and the Jewish people as a whole have had enough of blood libels on the soil of Europe, and we are going to fight this one with everything we have."

He also directly linked the ruling to resistance by several European nations, including Belgium, to the U.S. plans for an invasion of Iraq. He called the decision deeply immoral and deeply distorted.

Netanyahu seems to have forgotten that Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) under Sharon's command launched illumination flares from a distance so that the Phalangist militia could see to commit the massacres and that - as reported by Reuters today - two groups of Israelis have used the same Belgian law to file suits against Yasser Arafat. Sharon was disciplined and forced to resign after the incident. America is not the only country that likes to put acknowledged criminals back in power.

But Netanyahu was absolutely correct about the fact that the ruling, coming when it did, signaled that a major realignment was forming to counter the Empire's military strategy and heavy-handed conduct of foreign policy.

NATO

Three members of the 19-nation North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) moved on February 10th to exercise veto power to prevent NATO resources from being used to defend NATO member Turkey when the Iraqi invasion begins. France, Germany and Belgium were joined by Russia, which is not a member of the alliance, in endorsing the veto and supporting more time for inspections. NATO headquarters is located in Brussels.

One key impact of the veto would be to prevent the U.S. from sending key equipment like Patriot anti-missile systems, AWACS surveillance aircraft and biological and chemical units into Turkey.

U.S. Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld responded by stating that France is not an American ally and throughout the administration a number of undiplomatically harsh criticisms were leveled at France. An AP story published on February 12th quoted Republican Congressman Peter King of New York as calling France, "A second rate country" that should be left out of any future defense coalitions. King's statements gave breath to the deeper sentiments that administration officials had been suggesting since the veto was announced. "We may have to restructure the alliance, form a new alliance which the French will not be a part of. We cannot allow a second rate country to have a veto power or obstructionist power over American foreign policy."

Criticism of German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder was significantly more muted than that directed at France. Since the end of World War II Germany has been the rock upon which every aspect of U.S.-European policy has been based. Since taking office Schroeder has steadfastly opposed U.S. invasion plans for Iraq, reflecting the opinion of an overwhelming majority of the German people. The German economy is too powerful for the administration to ignore.

And in all this, Russian President Vladimir Putin remains the consummate chess player and judo master who recognizes that the U.S. cannot effectively function without Russian acquiescence or Russian oil. Additional signs of strain have been suggested by an indictment in Britain and the U.S. of Russia's Alfa Group for tax evasion just three days after British Petroleum (BP) and Alfa agreed to a $6.7 billion merger. BP's future has been as fragile as exploitable oil reserves are few and dwindling oil supplies remain the dominant theme music to all of the current instability.

It seems clear that NATO's future is uncertain and that a possibly epochal realignment of global alliances is in the making.

RESISTANCE FROM THE GROUND UP

Britain's The Independent reported this Monday that one in five British reservists being called up for service in the Middle East was either requesting a deferral or actually ignoring their orders to report for duty.

All over the world, many who are being asked to receive highly controversial and dangerous anthrax and smallpox vaccinations are refusing. As reported in The Sydney Morning Herald today, 11 Australian navy personnel, already en route to the Persian Gulf have flatly refused to receive their injections. They are now facing disciplinary actions and being transported back to Australia. FTW has previously reported on widespread vaccination refusals by Israeli first responders and throughout the U.S. Journalist Jon Rappoport has also documented vaccination refusals by members of the U.S. Army stationed at Fort Hood, Texas.

Rappoport's revelations come even as this writer is investigating widespread illnesses being caused by anthrax and smallpox vaccines recently given to member of the 1st Air Cavalry and 4th Infantry Divisions. In an unconfirmed report received today I was advised of massive absences of elementary school children from schools servicing that base who may have been infected by their recently vaccinated parents. A number of press stories and medical reports have confirmed that those receiving the vaccinations might be contagious for as long as three weeks afterward. FTW's investigation of this incident is continuing and we expect to produce a report within a week.

What will happen if Bush sends sick soldiers into battle who know that they have left sick children at home who they themselves have infected?

A CRUMBLING HOME FRONT

A spreading contagion of domestic opposition on a number of fronts is also backing the administration into a corner.

On February 10th Representatives Pete De Fazio D-Oregon and Ron Paul R-Texas introduced a bill (HJ Res 20) that would repeal the war powers given to President Bush immediately after 9-11. This was the measure passed days after the attacks with only one opposing vote, that of California Representative Barbara Lee of Oakland.

On February 11th, New York City Comptroller William C. Thompson called for a review of General Electric, Conoco and Halliburton for their financial dealings with "terrorist-linked" companies doing business in Iran and Syria. The move was made on behalf of New York City Police and Fire pension funds which also lost billions as a result of their investments in Enron.

On February 12th a coalition of members of the House of Representatives and military personnel headed by Michigan Democrat John Conyers filed suit in U.S. District Court in Massachusetts seeking an immediate injunction preventing the administration from going to war in Iraq. Quoted by the AP Conyers referred to the U.S. Constitution which says, "Congress shall have power... to declare war."

"Get it? Only Congress," said Conyers at a Washington news conference.

The other members of the Congress joining in that suit were Dennis Kucinich, D-Ohio; Jesse Jackson Jr., D-Ill.; Jim McDermott, D-Wash.; Jose Serrano, D-N.Y.; and Sheila Jackson Lee, D-Texas. The military members, on active duty and facing service in the invasion, were not identified to protect their identities.

THE CIA, THE FBI AND MI6??!!

Recent stories in The New York Times and The New Zealand Herald have revealed that even intelligence professionals in the U.S. and Great Britain are both privately and publicly expressing anger and concern at the politicization and falsification of their findings. Just days after a hugely embarrassing scandal in which it was disclosed that the Blair government had plagiarized a graduate student's research paper to formulate its "intelligence dossier" on Saddam Hussein, it was disclosed that members of the British Defense Intelligence Staff had leaked a classified intelligence document to the BBC showing that there were no ties between al Qaeda and the Hussein government in Iraq.

This followed on the heels of a highly suspicious tape recording of Osama bin Laden in which U.S. Secretary of State Colin Powell and American major press organizations conveniently overlooked the fact that bin Laden had called for Saddam Hussein's removal from power.

Powell's troubles don't end there.

On February 1st, James Risen and David Johnston of The New York Times disclosed that members of the CIA and the FBI were complaining that "senior administration officials have exaggerated the significance of some intelligence reports about Iraq, particularly about its possible links to terrorism, in order to strengthen their political argument for war."

It is becoming increasingly difficult to hide the growing fragmentation inside the government and Powell should perhaps take a look at two of his own schizophrenic statements. When he testified before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee in October 2001 he said, "We cannot let Usama bin Laden pretend that he is doing it in the name of helping the Iraqi people or the Palestinian people. He doesn't care one whit about them. He has not given a dollar toward them. He has never spoken out for them." Yet on February 11, 2003 Powell testified before the Senate Budget Committee and said, "...Once again he [bin Laden] speaks to the people of Iraq and talks about their struggle and how he is in partnership with Iraq. This nexus between terrorists and states that are developing weapons of mass destruction can no longer be looked away from and ignored."

NOW COMES THE REAL DANGER

FTW has been warning of developments like this since the Bush administration took office. They are not trivial.

This administration has presented itself to the globalized world economy as a business manager that was capable of putting together an acquisition and merger of all of the world's major assets. While the Bush administration has acted as CEO it has still reported to a globalized board of directors which includes the major economic corporations and financial interests of Europe, Russia, China, Israel, Japan and possibly Saudi Arabia. These should be distinguished from the governments or peoples of these nations. What it has demonstrated is that it is incapable of transferring the assets of a significant portion of Europe into the portfolio. It is operationally incompetent to manage its way out of a wet paper bag. The corporate histories of George W. Bush, Dick Cheney and Donald Rumsfeld demonstrate only the ability to acquire other companies, pump the shares prices, commit fraud and reap billions in profits.

The administration's management of world affairs since 9-11 has been laughable and unbelievable on the world stage and increasingly at home. It is losing credibility by the moment. The two most recent developments which indicate a global power realignment are the major shot taken at Israel today by Belgium and North Korea's increasing belligerence which is making a mockery of the U.S.'s hypocritical rhetoric. Netanyahu's statement that there was a link between the Belgian court's ruling and the pending Iraqi invasion was an incredibly revealing admission.

The Sunday edition of The Los Angeles Times on February 9th carried a huge story on how a two-front war in Iraq and Korea was winnable while trying to hide the fact that U.S. casualties would be enormous. This after it was disclosed by Britain's Mirror that the United States had just ordered 100,000 body bags and 6,000 coffins.

Those who would naively look on these developments should remember the lessons of history. When Adolf Hitler's Third Reich began to realize that it would lose the Second World War - after its defeat at Stalingrad in 1943 - it commenced its "Final Solution," the extermination of 6 million Jews and two million other victims. When its management skills and economic power were revealed to be inadequate, Germany's allies fell away and with each new defeat the Reich became more vicious, more vindictive.

Now is the time, especially if dissent further weakens the U.S. position, when people like me, people like you, anyone who is known to be an "Enemy of the State" can be expected to disappear. Now is the time when people in potential combat theaters should begin to feel like cannon fodder and pieces of meat. Now is the time when an administration which stole an election, which encouraged and helped the attacks of 9-11, and which has turned the world inside out is revealing itself for what is. The fig leaf has come off and, naked to the world, fangs exposed, saliva dripping from its lips, the regime of George W. Bush will reveal what energy beats it heart and what its only true ability is.

 What happens from here on out is anybody's guess.

 

Special thanks to: Theo Marcus and Kurt Kosted


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