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Links With Your Coffee - Tuesday




Oh great. Now Norm's the spoiler. ;-D

I'm really curious what people here think about this:

"Down stream we will owe it to ourselves and to the world to speak up against the excesses of American hegemony, dominance, imperialism, or whatever you want to call it."

Most folks from my midwestern home state have never been out of the U.S. and don't understand how our foreign policy is rarely the giving, benign creation we wish it was. It is frought with treatchery, assassination, invasion and lawful extortion (read: embargo).

We 'wrongfoot' nations, invade them or make them states (looking at you Hawaii), and take thier national resources.

When a democratically elected leader wants to nationalize his nations natural resources or otherwise oppose our national interests, the CIA kills/deposes that leader (they call it 'regime change').

For reference, see: Iran 1953, Guatemala 1954, Cuba (attempted with exploding cigars among other things) 1959-, Congo 1960, Iraq 1963, Iraq 1968, Chile 1973, Afghanistan 1973-74 & 1978-81, Iran 1980, Nicaragua 1981-90 (Contras anyone?), Iraq (Gulf I), Guatamala 1993, Zimbabwe 2001-3, Serbia 2000, Venzuela 2002 (LOTS of oil), Georgia 2003, Ukraine 2004, Lebanon 2005.. etc... etc...

But try to bing this up in casual conversation and you are branded a nut. Ex-CIA guys will speak on C-SPAN for hours about this stuff (just search for John Stockwell), but people don't want to hear it.

What do you guys-n-gals think about our foreign policy, both above board and the black bag, wet jobs?

Are you sure all those leaders were democratically elected/re-elected?

I think it would be impossible for the United States to not be involved in some way with other countries. Do you really think we would be better off if we isolated ourselves? Would the rest of the world be better off?

We're one of the biggest members of the world community. Involvement in world events is inevitable. Sometimes we help, sometimes we don't, but I don't think we're intentionally trying to keep the rest of the world from being prosperous (unless their definition of prosperity is hurting us).

That's interesting, Robinson - I think Americans don't want to talk about it because deep down inside we all think of ourselves as the good guy. There are aberrations and mistakes, of course but that's what they are - otherwise, we are certainly doing things for the greater good. This is still a John Wayne America and as Digby said in the Salon interview that's EXACTLY what Republicans play to...the archetypes buried in the American psyche.

So - Americans don't want to know the bad stuff (something else Republicans play to). I'm not surprised you can't get conversational traction...

I did just want to thank Norm for the Digby interview. I am a big fan and have found her media analyses very calming over the years (just when you're flipping out over some Republican marketing lies - you realize someone else sees it and is handling it maturely and it takes the frantic out of it...)

Hi Syngas,

Iran was a democracy. The CIA overthrew it and placed a deposed 'king' back in power, with the assurance the U.S. would get lots of oil. The king was not good to his people (torture, murder, etc.) and eventually a religious leader caused him to flee to the U.S. Later we had the Iran Hostage Crisis, led by students unhappy that the U.S. has overthrown their gov't, and wanting the Shaw back in Iran for prosecution.

We also helped Saddam gain power, through money, weapons and intel. He did 'bad things'.

But we don't overthrow these gov'ts because we don't like their domestic policy. We do it because they get in the way of our interests and western companies who own that country's national resources.

I like that the U.S. is involved in the world. I like having bases all over the world and a strong military. I like that we feed the world too.

But what I do mind is when we poison the milk in 3rd world countries to cause civil unrest (see Nicaragua and Cuba). Destroy bridges so that people don't have food and foreign companies don't invest. Or train soldiers at the University of the Americas (in Florida) to do very very bad things to political prisoners in foreign countries.

These acts are not for the 'greater good'. they are not to raise intelligence on enemies, or to oppose any enemy who poses any military threat. In fact we specifically do not do these things to countries that could oppose us. (See John Stockwell).

But, we all wish we did, don't we? I know mistakes happen, and I'm not talking about mistakes. I'm talking about premeditated evil for the sake of profit.

So, Syngas, do you personally approve of CIA agents overthrowing a democratically elected government?

Please, don't trust me. look for yourself. Don't trust those sources until you look at their sources.

This isn't some internet rumor but the findings of the Church Commitee (congress). The writings of Bob Woodward. The testimony of former agents:

Nice movie Rob, I like how he says none of it was done to oppose the Soviet Union because it didn't happen in the Soviet Union.

You do know Iran has a 1000 mile border with the former Soviet Union right? Could it be Mosoddeq was getting a little too friendly with the Soviets? I don't know your opinion of Joseph Stalin, but I'm pretty sure Eisenhower didn't want him to have a warm water port.

Sure British oil played a part, but it's not like the US needed oil from half way around the world at the time. We were still exporting oil in the 50's. Iran and the Brits were competitors in the oil market.


So you agree with the policy of overthrowing a democracy and installing a king to fight communism? On the -assumption- that the democratically elected leader was fond of a communist leader?

I am familiar with history and the utter lack of Soviet warm water ports, the invasion of Afghanistan to achieve same, etc. but the wars we are talking about are not related to the Soviet threat, they are related to money & power for specific western businesses.

Here, found this.. not a bad list, but some inconsistancies with other things I've found:

Read the individual action per country. See if you approve of them. See if you can relate them to the Soviet threat.


"So you agree with the policy of overthrowing a democracy and installing a king to fight communism? On the -assumption- that the democratically elected leader was fond of a communist leader?"

Not so much to fight communism, but to stop Soviet expansion, yes. Of course I don't know what the consequences of a warm water port for Stalin would have been, or how many more people would have been killed world wide if he did, but I'm sure you don't either.

You can tell me it had nothing to do with the Soviets all you want, but knowing what was going on in the world at that time, I find that hard to believe.

You can "find it hard to believe", but look at the information found by the Church Commitee.

It does seem thier efforts to manipulate the U.S. population's opinion of the action worked on you though:

++++ "In 1953, the CIA worked with the United Kingdom to overthrow the democratically-elected government of Iran lead by Prime Minister Mohammad Mossadegh who had attempted to nationalize Iran's oil, threatening the interests of the Anglo-Iranian Oil Company. Declassified CIA documents show that Britain was fearful of Iran's plans to nationalize its oil industry and pressed the U.S. to mount a joint operation to remove the prime minister.[3] In 1951 the Iranian parliament voted to nationalize the oil fields of the country.

[nationalize means that foriegn countries no longer own mineral rights]


" The U.K. and U.S. boycott and other political pressures by both governments, together with a massive covert propaganda campaign in the months leading up to the coup created the environment necessary for success. The CIA hoped to plant articles in American newspapers saying that Shah Mohammed Reza Pahlevi's return to govern Iran resulted from a homegrown revolt against a Communist-leaning government. This attempt to manipulate the U.S. media largely failed, although the CIA successfully used its contacts at the Associated Press to put on the news wire a statement from Tehran about royal decrees that the C.I.A. itself had written.[3] The CIA hired Iranian assets who posed as Communists, harassed religious leaders and staged the bombing of one cleric's home to turn the Islamic religious community against the government.[3] See false flag operation. "

But yeah, there was a 'concern' about the growing Communist party there. So I'll give ya that. 1953. Hell actors were blacklisted as 'card carrying' members. Remember?

I am with Patton though, with a war looming vs the USSR, we should have taken the war to them right after WWII in a hot war. We wouldn't have beaten them, but we would have beaten them out of Europe.

Cheers and thanks for your excellent posts!

Syngas: I know this book has been mentioned quite a bit over the last little while, but if you want an analysis of CIA backed overthrows of democratically elected leaders for american friendly dictators (pinochet, etc.) You really should read the first 100 or so pages of "the Shock Doctrine" by Naomi Klein.

Hell, Chilean nationals under Pinochet came into america, Killed Orlando Letelier who spoke out against Pinochet and milton friedman in a 1976 The Nation article, and was killed in a car bomb a week later. The CIA knew of the forged passports the Assasins used at the time.

Also, for an inside look at Iran and the collapse due to CIA influence can be seen in a graphic Novel-turned movie "Persepolis." It's the story of a girl being raised in Iran, mostly true (as far as I know).


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