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Viewpoint: Power and propaganda

July 1, 1993

Viewpoint: Power and propaganda

By Joe Baker

Power and propaganda

By Joe Baker

Senior Editor

“I want to own nothing and control everything.”—John D. Rockefeller I

That desire hasn’t waned since it was first expressed by John D. There are people in the world today who still lust for that power. Sometimes called the shadow government, the oligarchy, globalists, or by other labels, it was George Bush, Sr. who first referred to this secretive cabal as the New World Order.

“We are on the verge of a global transformation. All we need is the right major crisis and the nations will accept the New World Order.”—David Rockefeller.

What is this so-called new order, and what does it seek? It is made up mostly of wealthy and powerful men in this country and abroad. There are few women involved in this group. Their objective is to eliminate individual nations and to weld all peoples into a single entity, governed by a single government. That government, of course, would consist of these same wealthy individuals.

Their effectiveness is contained in this question: “Why is the concept of U.S. nationalism and sovereignty suddenly evil?” Why are those who wish to preserve our national independence called “conspiracy nuts”? Before Sept. 11, “patriot” was becoming a dirty world, only associated with right-wing militias. Outrageously, “‘defenders’ of the U.S. Constitution against federal government and the UN (Super Patriots),” was a warning point under “Right-Wing Extremist” in a 1999 FBI Joint Terrorism Task Force brochure distributed in Phoenix, Arizona.

“Today Americans would be outraged if U.N. troops entered Los Angeles to restore order; tomorrow they will be grateful! This is especially true if they were told there was an outside threat from beyond, whether real or promulgated, that threatened our very existence.

“It is then that all peoples of the world will plead with world leaders to deliver them from this evil. The one thing every man fears is the unknown. When presented with this scenario, individual rights will be willingly relinquished for the guarantee of their well-being granted to them by their world government.”

Henry Kissinger said that on May 21, 1992 in a city in France, in a speech to the Bildeberg Society. The Bildebergers are one of the groups purportedly dedicated to creating the New World Order. Kissinger is a member. So is George Bush, Sr.

This rapacious group exerts great influence on American media. Most networks are

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owned by defense contractors like General Electric and Westinghouse. Too many news anchors, major commentators and national journalists are members of the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR). Remember how Ronald Reagan railed against the CFR/globalist influence on George Bush, Sr., in the primaries of 1980, and then included many CFR members in his staff and Cabinet when the deal was made for Bush as vice president?

A recent survey showed more than 87 percent of the adult American public gets its news about the “war on terrorism” from television. While there is a good deal of commentary and reportage on that subject, the incessant, insistent drumbeat of commercialism has returned with a vengeance. Television is almost back to what was considered “normal” before the attacks of 9/11.

Norman Solomon is a syndicated columnist who comments on the media and politics. Recently he wrote: “To credulously watch TV is to submit to a numbing process. What television offers today, perhaps more than ever, is anesthesia in the face of apprehension. As a stunned spectator, the body politic is incessantly coached as to the implicit limits of sensitivity—the innocent lives at home are clearly precious, the innocent lives in Afghanistan nearly worthless. With impressive high-tech visuals, the TV set offers us expansive zones of unreality, swaddled in the comforts of commerce, hermetic entertainment and propaganda. If we must watch, it’s essential that we recognize what we’re seeing.”

Comedian George Carlin termed all this robotic flag waving “patriotism for the symbol minded.”

Propaganda has been defined as what the other guy says. If our side says it, it is God’s honest truth. The Nazis of more than half a century ago understood and utilized the power of propaganda.

Adolf Hitler discussed the subject in his book Mein Kampf (My Struggle). “The German [American?] people have no idea of the extent to which they have to be gulled in order to be led,” he said. Yes, the majority of the American public is as gullible in this regard as the Germans were then.

“The size of the lie is a definite factor in causing it to be believed,” Hitler wrote, “for the vast masses of the nation are in the depths of their hearts more easily deceived than they are consciously and intentionally bad. The primitive simplicity of their minds renders them a more easy prey to a big lie than a small one, for they themselves often tell little lies, but would be ashamed to tell a big one.”

Hitler went on to say that propaganda must be so popular and so simple that even the dullest of its listeners will easily understand it and that the more people it is to influence, the lower the intellectual level must be.

“Through clever and constant application of propaganda, people can be made to see paradise as hell, and also the other way around, to consider the most wretched sort of life as paradise.

“The best political weapon is the weapon of terror. Cruelty commands respect. Men may hate us, but we don’t ask for their love; only for their fear. The broad masses of a population are more amenable to the appeal of rhetoric than to any other force. What luck for rulers, that men do not think!” Those are the words of Adolf Hitler.

Repeatedly, we have seen the administration label claims by the Taliban as propaganda. When the foreign press reports comments from the Afghan people and the Taliban, indicating our relentless bombing is killing a great number of innocent civilians, we’re told not to believe it, it’s all propaganda.

When the U.N. claims 1.5 million Iraqis have died because of our government’s bombings, sanctions and related causes, what does the White House say? Iraqi propaganda. How about the thousands who died in the 78 days of air war against Yugoslavia in 1999? You guessed it. Propaganda.

NATO missiles wiped out the Serbs’ broadcast center, killing everyone inside. It was claimed the attack was necessary to shut down Slobodan Milosevic’s “propaganda machine.” What were the Serbs showing on their TV? It was pictures of the devastation NATO bombs were causing on people and infrastructure. These were old ladies, children and people much like us.

Recently, one of our missiles slammed into the broadcast center of Al Jazeera, the independent Arab broadcasting station. Why? It was airing statements by Osama bin Laden and showing the results of non-stop bombing of Afghan cities and villages. It was interviewing ordinary non-Taliban residents of that badly mauled country.

These kinds of attacks are in the category of war crimes, but they are never mentioned on this side of the Atlantic and there is never any prosecution. Any moves in that direction in the U.N. Security Council are vetoed by our representative. The government also steadfastly refuses to participate in and approve of an International Criminal Court that could impartially pursue and prosecute such offenses. We say we’ll take part and vote yes if you grant us blanket immunity from prosecution.

It’s all just propaganda, right? The United States always pursues noble aims and always fights fair. That’s the American way, isn’t it? Well, maybe we did nuke Hiroshima and Nagasaki and lied about them being military targets chosen to minimize civilian casualties. Maybe we did firebomb Dresden and Tokyo in WWII, And perhaps we carpet bombed North Korea, killing untold civilians. Didn’t we do the same in North Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia?

We wiped out another 200,000 in the Gulf War and a couple of thousand in Panama to bag Manuel Noriega, and there was that 78-day bombing spree in Yugoslavia, but this is different. This is a war against terrorists who attacked our country.

Then why has the Pentagon bought up exclusive rights to all photos of Afghanistan taken by a commercial satellite and is not letting anyone outside the military see them? The Pentagon has better satellites and much better photos of its own. And why did the White House prevail on the networks not to broadcast bin Laden’s statements without editing? Propaganda is what the other guy says.

Why did CNN’s head of standards and practices tell its anchors to put scenes of ordinary Afghans’ suffering “into context”? He told anchors it would be good to say something like: “The Pentagon has repeatedly stressed that it is trying to minimize civilian casualties in Afghanistan, even as the Taliban regime continues to harbor terrorists who are connected to the Sept. 11 attacks that claimed thousands of innocent lives in the U.S. We must keep in mind that these US military actions are in response to a terrorist attack that killed close to 4,000 innocent people in the U.S.”

Not long ago U.S. planes bombed the small village of Chowkar-Karez, killing dozens of civilians. A Pentagon official said: “The people there are dead because we wanted them dead.” The reason? They were sympathetic to the Taliban and al-Qaeda. So much for the Pentagon’s concern about civilians.

And Hollywood has eagerly promised to turn out movies to keep the public on the side of the administration and in support of the war. Isn’t that propaganda?

One of the Bush administration’s greatest fears is that the public will begin asking questions as they did in the Vietnam era and “go soft” on the war. That would upset their applecart for sure. But we are peace-loving people at heart, aren’t we?

In 1945, at the Nuremburg war crimes trials, the number two Nazi, Hermann Goering, told the tribunal: “Why, of course the people don’t want war. That is understood. But after all, it is the leaders of the country who determine the policy, and it is always a simple matter to drag the people along. All you have to do is to tell them they are being attacked, and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger.”

Have you noticed anything like that lately? It raises another question: Why is there so much Washington doesn’t want you to know? Maybe the danger isn’t outside.

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