Sunday, 24 February 2008

Understanding Politics:

The CIA and the Cult of Intelligence.,

by Victor Marchetti & John D. Marks, New York: Dell Publishing, 1975.
This is one of perhaps ten books from prior to 1985 that I decided to include because of their continuing value. I believe that both history and historians will credit these two individuals with having made a difference by articulating so ably both the clandestine mentality and the problems extant in the lack of oversight regarding proprietary organizations, propaganda and disinformation, and intrusive not-so-clandestine operations. Victor Marchetti spent 14 years in the CIA, where he became an executive assistant to the deputy director, and John Marks spent five years in the State Department, where he worked as an analyst and as staff assistant to the intelligence director. Currently Marchetti lives in Vienna, Virginia while Marks lives in Washington, D.C.

NATO's Secret Armies: Operation Gladio and Terrorism in Western Europe.,
by Daniele Ganser, publ. Routledge 2005
The CIA and the British secret service MI6, in collaboration with the military alliance NATO and European military secret services set up a network of clandestine anticommunist armies in Western Europe after World War II. The secret soldiers were trained on remote islands in the Mediterranean and in unorthodox warfare centers in England and in the United States by the Green Berets and SAS Special Forces. The network was armed with explosives, machine guns and high-tech communication equipment hidden in underground bunkers and secret arms caches in forests and mountain meadows. In some countries, the secret army linked up with right-wing terrorists who in a secret war engaged in political manipulation, harassment of left wing parties, massacres, coup d'etats and torture. Codenamed "Gladio" ('the sword'), the Italian secret army was exposed in 1990 by Italian Prime Minister Giulio Andreotti to the Italian Senate, whereupon the press spoke of the "the best kept, and most damaging, political-military secret since World War II" (Observer, 18. November 1990) and observed that "The story seems straight from the pages of a political thriller." (The Times, November 19, 1990). Ever since, so-called 'stay-behind' armies of NATO have also been discovered in France, Spain, Portugal, Germany, Belgium, the Netherlands, Luxemburg, Denmark, Norway, Sweden, Finland, Switzerland, Austria, Greece and Turkey. They were internationally coordinated by the Pentagon and NATO and had their last known meeting in the NATO-linked Allied Clandestine Committee (ACC) in Brussels in October 1990.

The Shock Doctrine: The Rise of Disaster Capitalism.,

by Naomi Klein,
Publ. Metropolitan Books Sept. 18, 2007, ISBN-10: 0805079831
Naomi Klein's The Shock Doctrine advances a truly unnerving argument: historically, while people were reeling from natural disasters, wars and economic upheavals, savvy politicians and industry leaders nefariously implemented policies that would never have passed during less muddled times. As Klein demonstrates, this reprehensible game of bait-and-switch isn't just some relic from the bad old days. It's alive and well in contemporary society, and coming soon to a disaster area near you.

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