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("Quid coniuratio est?")
NEWS ROUND-UP -- 03/24/96
This Editor-in-Chief job ("I couldn't find a real job, so I made myself Editor-in-Chief!") has its own rhythms. Some days the news is flying in and I'm swamped with work, other days things are slow. For the moment, things are slow so I thought I'd do a "news round-up", a summary of various items. I wish I could guarantee this as a regular feature, but like I say, this job has its own rhythms.
BOSNIA? WHAT'S THAT?
There used to be a country called Yugoslavia, made up of smaller countries called "Republics". Not sure why, maybe the death of their BIG LEADER TITO, maybe the re-unification of Germany and subsequent German expansionist impulses into Croatia (one of the "Republics" of the former Yugoslavia), but now Yugoslavia is split up and the various peoples, Republics, and religions therein are having a bloody feud, like there used to be with the Hatfields and the McCoys here in the U.S.
So about last November, Bill Clinton (maybe he was high on cocaine at the time) suddenly has a BIG push that we must send U.S. troops to the former Yugoslavia NOW! NOW! NOW! Hurry up! Do it right away! Like a whirlwind suitor, Clinton dragged the leaders of the various Yugoslav factions to Dayton, Ohio and "lit a fire under their pants" that made them hurry up and sign the damn agreement -- pronto. Clinton was in a big hurry all of a sudden to put our troops on the ground over there. It was like someone had "lit a fire" under his pants. He got the factions to sign an agreement, mobilized the troops, and then basically said "Congress can rubber stamp this or not, but I'm King Clinton and I'll do as I please!"
In the first rush of events, before the press had been coached into how to cover the story, it was being reported that the 1-year limit on U.S. involvement in the region was "just for public consumption" -- in other words, it was a lie! The press, caught off-guard, actually let some truth slip out at first. Estimates (apparently not for "public consumption") were for a 5-year U.S. involvement in the former Yugoslavia.
Now, in an article in the London Telegraph (03/22/96, electronic version), we learn that, according to the Pentagon, "Bosnia is likely to revert to the chaos and bloodshed of civil war once the 55,000 soldiers of Ifor [mostly U.S. soldiers], the NATO-led peace-keeping force, are withdrawn at the end of the year."
The article points to the "Muslim-Croat Federation", controllers now of part of Bosnia (one of the Republics), and says that "diplomats in Sarajevo already admit that the federation is a sham."
Two of the pistol-packing antagonists are entities known as BOSNIAN CROATS and BOSNIAN SERBS. One wonders how it was that the late BIG LEADER TITO managed to keep them peaceable in the past -- maybe that's why they used to call him "Marshall" Tito.
Says the London Telegraph: "The Pentagon assessment concludes, 'the prospects for the existence of a viable, unitary Bosnia beyond the life of Ifor are dim.'"
And, according to the Telegraph, "This is tantamount to saying that the Dayton accords, which committed all parties to preserving the integrity of Bosnia as a multi-ethnic nation, are meaningless."
STRATEGIC DEFENSE INITIATIVE (SDI) -- THE SEQUEL
Remember how, after the break-up of the Soviet Union, some floated the concept of a "peace dividend"? The idea was that, since the Soviet Union was gone, we didn't have to worry so much about the Soviet threat of a missile attack. This meant that we ourselves wouldn't need to spend so much of our tax dollars on anti-missile defense systems meant to defend us against such an attack. So, because we wouldn't be spending so much on these anti-missile defenses, that would free up money that could be spent, say, for improvements in our own infrastructure. Or, the freed-up money could be used to decrease our national debt. Or it could be used to cut taxes.
Remember how the "peace dividend" never materialized? The freed-up money must have went somewhere! But we, the people, never saw it! Maybe it went south, down sunny Mexico way, to help bail them out so they wouldn't default on their debt to Wall Street. Maybe it got stolen by corrupt politicians and now sits, hidden, in secret offshore bank accounts.
Now, according to the London Telegraph (03/22/96, electronic edition), Bob "I'm from Kansas" Dole wants to "require the Pentagon to develop a multi-billion-dollar missile defence system to counter the nuclear threat from rogue nations."
So gone (apparently) is the big bad ENEMY, Soviet communism, and here is a new big bad ENEMY, "rogue nations." (We've also had an internal big bad ENEMY, the "drug menace", since at least 1969.) The faces change, but the (expensive) danger from the big bad ENEMY remains the same.
Says the Telegraph, "Mr. Dole and Newt Gingrich... yesterday jointly endorsed a Bill that would commit the government to building a system capable of defending all 50 American states from a limited missile attack by the year 2003." But what are we supposed to do between now and then? Should we go to Oz, just like another Kansan, named Dorothy?
I WON'T TELL IF YOU WON'T
Back before the Republican landslide in the November 1994 elections, the then-Democratic Congress stonewalled attempts to dig into, for example, the strange death of Vincent Foster, Jr., and the Mena dope and money-laundering corruption.
Then, when the Republicans gained control of the Congress after the November 1994 elections, many of us were hoping that "Now, with a Republican majority, we'll get an honest investigation." In fact, that was probably part of why the Republicans did so well in November of '94: many of us naive folks thought an honest investigation would ensue.
But we found out, thanks to sources such as Strategic Investment newsletter and Sherman Skolnick of the Citizens' Committee to Clean Up the Courts that -- surprise, surprise -- the Republicans are also crooked. See, for example, CN 4.15 where we learned that
Skolnick's sources had previously indicated to him that there was a stalemate in efforts to bring this story out; that the Democrats and Republicans, both being "dirty" in the Iran- Contra/Mena imbroglio, had come to an impasse where an "I won't tell if you won't tell" situation was in effect.
We now find that the big deal Washington Times seems to have discovered this also -- but over a year later. In an article posted to Internet bearing the heading "The smoking guns" (Washington Times, March 18, 1996, by Paul Craig Roberts), the Washington Times wonders, "if the Republicans also have something to hide."
The Times informs us that (shock, gasp), "What Whitewater seems to come home to is the laundering of drug money." True, notes the tame, "conservative" newspaper, the Senate Democrats have used the filibuster to block a continuation of the Whitewater hearings. "Yet, there is nothing to stop Republicans from going ahead with Whitewatergate hearings but their own wimpishness. The Banking Committee, the Judiciary Committee [Orrin Hatch], and a number of other committees and subcommittees could easily claim oversight and investigatory jurisdiction. One can't help but wonder why the Republicans don't just get down to work."
So are you then thus saying, Washington Times, that the Republicans maybe themselves have "dirty laundry"?
Here's a scoop for Washington Times: When Mr. Whipple tells his customers, "Don't squeeze the Charmin," if you'll look and notice very carefully -- he himself is squeezing the Charmin! Even whilst he is admonishing his customers not to squeeze the Charmin! (I just thought you might not have noticed that.)
Don Imus, a popular radio personality, hosted the Radio and TV Correspondents Dinner recently. Our own beloved Prez Billy Jeff of Arkansas and his wife Hillary were in attendance.
Imus, it is said, told "off-color" jokes that were embarrassing to the royal President and wife. "The White House," notes the Drudge Report, "was so hurt and bruised by Imus that a call was placed by [White House press secretary Mike] McCurry to the C-SPAN cable-tv network." McCurry reportedly "requested" C- SPAN not re-broadcast the dinner. (Maybe with the Communications Decency Act, McCurry could have just said Imus was "indecent" and then ordered C-SPAN not to re-broadcast.)
Anyway, I would love to know what jokes the Clintons didn't like to hear. If anybody knows some/all of them, and can send same to firstname.lastname@example.org, my thanks.
Maybe one of the jokes went something like this: Q: How many Branch Davidian children does it take to screw in a light bulb?
I encourage distribution of "Conspiracy Nation."
See also: http://www.europa.com/~johnlf/cn.html
See also: ftp ftp.shout.net pub/users/bigred