Attorney General John Ashcroft , a la Sheriff John Wayne, rode out to Chicago, on Oct. 9, 2002, to show everybody he is the nation’s top lawman. Although he left his white horse, badge and cowboy hat at home, he nevertheless put on a good show. He announced a seven count federal indictment against a Syrian-born Muslim, Enaam Arnaout. It carries penalties, upon conviction, of up to 90 years in the slammer, without any chance of parole. However, proving the government’s case against the defendant beyond any reasonable doubt will be an entirely different story.
Arnaout is charged with giving “material support” to terrorists by allegedly diverting millions of dollars of assets from a charity, the Benevolence International Foundation, to finance Osama bin Laden’s al Qaeda network and other militant groups.
Sounding like Joe McCarthy, Ashcroft claimed that he has evidence of a world wide terrorist conspiracy dating back to the 1980s, which originated in the camps of the Mujahideen fighters, in the then Soviet-occupied Afghanistan. Now, this aspect of the highly complicated case could prove to be a little embarrassing for the Feds, especially to former U.S. presidents, and to the boy-ohs at the CIA.
On July 3, 1979, President Jimmy Carter authorized the first covert aid, via the CIA, to the Mujahideens. And, it was old Ronald Reagan himself, who gave them the label, “Freedom Fighters.” Up until 1992, billions of U.S. dollars were spent, to train, arm and recruit tens of thousands of Muslim guerrillas, including Osama bin Laden. The rebels came from 43 Islamic countries to do our government’s bidding. The Jihad against the USSR-occupiers was born in Langley, Virginia, the headquarters of the CIA. The UK’s Guardian Unlimited, 01/17/99, called the massive covert operation, “The Frankenstein the CIA Created.”
Part of the difficulty for the prosecutor in this case will be explaining how the Mujahideens, and others, funded by U.S. taxpayers, were subsequently added to our government’s group terrorist profiles. How did the so-called “good guys” become the “bad guys?” This could mean all those dirty CIA held secrets could become public at the trial. And, don’t forget that from 1989-1993, the man sitting in the White House was none other than George W. Bush, Sr (a/k/a “Big Bush”). It will be interesting to hear his testimony, if the defense decides to call him as a witness.
In fact, it was “Big Bush” who sanctioned the original “Terrorist Group Profiles” document, that was issued in Nov. 1988. He was then serving as the Gipper’s Vice-President. One of the supposed terrorists on the very politically inspired list was Nelson Mandela! A motive for the “Terrorist Profile” gimmick, in Mandela’s case, was that it gave ammunition to pro-apartheid forces to unfairly denounce advocates for Mandela and the African National Congress as “supporters of terrorism.” Two others, who made the “Terrorist Profile’s” final cut were Irish Republicans, Gerry Adams and Martin McGuinness. They both can presently be reached at the British Parliament, where they are elected members representing the beleaguered Catholics from the six counties of northeastern Ireland.
There was no mention in the original “Terrorist Group Profile” document of the Mujahideens, or of Afghanistan, or of any secret CIA funding of guerrilla Muslim groups. Somehow, in that same document, “Big Bush” also left the Nicaraguan Contras off his “Central American” terrorist roll call. This might have had something to do with the fact the CIA was then beginning to work with dozens of drug dealers and their companies to secretly fund right-wing Latin American thugs (Garry Webb’s expose, “Dark Alliance: The CIA, the Contras, and the Crack Cocaine Explosion”).
In their book, “The Terrorism Industry,” Ed Herman and Gerry O’Sullian, reveled how the U.S. government supported repressive political movements around the world, as long as they were anti-communist, but invariably castigated liberation organizations as “terrorist movements.”
Meanwhile, today, in the Old Bailey’s court room in London, another major scandal is trying to surface. David Shayler, a former MI 5 operative is claiming that “British Secret Service agents paid up to 100,000 pounds to al Qaeda terrorists for an assassination attempt on Libyan leader Colonel Gadaffy in 1996.” (London Evening Standard, 10/08/02). Shayler is being prosecuted for breaching the Official Secrets Act. The trial judge has barred both the public and press from most of the proceedings (See, the UK’s well researched “Scoop” web site for more details.)
John Duffy, Arnaout’s defense attorney, said the Feds’ indictment of his client “makes a mockery of the war on terrorism.” He added, “The war on terrorism had degenerated into paranoia, where any Arab can be arrested and charged.” Keep in mind that a Grand Jury is capable of indicting a ham sandwich, if that is what the prosecutor wants.
Ashcroft’s staged televised episode also had a surreal atmosphere to it. When he, in an injured voice, declared, it was wrong for any entity to engage in the the “works of evil,” I thought for a fleeting moment, that he was going to announce the indictment of Israel’s Ariel “The Butcher” Sharon for his war crimes against the Palestinian people! But alas, that was only wishful thinking on my part. Sharon’s day will have to wait for God’s justice, since it appears, like that notorious international crook and Zionoid, Marc Rich, he is beyond the reach of man’s.
Nevertheless, the Arnaout’s trial will test the defendant’s guilt or innocence. It may also put on public display the role of nefarious agencies, like the CIA, and others, in creating monsters that have come back to harm America. None of this, however, will reveal the hidden agenda of the wire pullers to propel a reactionary U.S. into additional foreign intrigues, that may eventually destabilize and threaten the ultimate security of the Republic. That truth will show itself only to an awakened America.
© William Hughes 2002
William Hughes is the author of “Andrew Jackson vs. New World Order” (Authors Choice Press) and “Baltimore Iconoclast” (Writer’s Showcase), which are availabel online. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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