Filed Under * First Responders, 9-11 truth, 911 victims, CIA, Censorship, Controlled Demolition, David Ray Griffin, Firefighters for 911 Truth, Global Awakening, Independent Media, Mainstream Media, Mossad, New World Order, Operation Mockingbird | Comments Off
Kevin Barrett is a renowned American journalist, writer and former university lecturer. He has taught English, French, Arabic, American Civilization, Humanities, African Literature, Folklore, and Islam at colleges and universities in the San Francisco Bay area, Paris, and Madison, Wisconsin. Being a Muslim convert, Dr. Barrett is a founding member of the Muslim-Jewish-Christian Alliance (MUJCA) and member of the Scientific Panel for the Investigation of 9/11 (SPINE).
According to Salem News, In July 2004 he rashly rejected a plum post-doc at the University of California because it was funded by the 9/11-disinformation-sponsoring CIA-linked Ford Foundation. “In the summer of 2006, Republican state legislators and Fox newscasters demanded that Barrett be fired from his job teaching an introductory Islam class at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, but the University refused to buckle, and Barrett got high marks from his students.”In fall 2006 Barrett began hosting an Internet talk show weekly on Republic Broadcasting Network titled “Truth Jihad Radio.” Twice a week he had another Internet talk show on the Genesis Communications Network called “The Dynamic Duo.”
Dr. Barrett is internationally renowned for his well-substantiated researches on the 9/11 which he describes as a false-flag operation and inside job that took place with the foreknowledge of the high-ranking personalities inside the U.S. executive structure.
He wrote three articles for the Madison’s Capital Times newspaper in which he tried to reveal the truth behind the 9/11 attacks; however, the newspaper was shortly closed after running his articles.
Kevin Barrett kindly accepted my interview request and joined me in an in-depth conversation, answering my questions regarding the 9/11 attacks and the influence of Israeli lobby over the U.S. policymakers. What follows is the complete text of my interview with Dr. Kevin Barrett, journalist, writer and university lecturer.
Kourosh Ziabari: You have selected the title “Truth Jihad” for your personal website. Although being functionally and semantically a sublime and precious concept in Islamic thought, Jihad has been constantly vilified and denigrated by the extremist neo-cons and Zionists who want to portray a distorted and black image of Islam. They claim that Jihad is tantamount to terrorism and Muslims who follow the principle of Jihad are terrorists as well; however, the reality is that Jihad is a mobilized, logically sustained and concerted confrontation with those who want to plunder your values and treasures and violate your rights. Although you’re a Muslim convert, you are a Western citizen; however, you have selected an Islamic name for your website. Would you please explain about this selection for me and my readers?
Kevin Barrett: Being a Western citizen and a convert does not make me any less of a Muslim. Islam, after all is a deen, a religion and a way of life, not a race or ethnicity.
In any case, jihad is a noble religious concept. As you know, the word means “effort” or “striving.” In one sense, jihad is the complement of “Islam” whose root meaning is “surrender” to God. So jihad means to exert effort in the cause of God.
One very intense form of effort, exertion or striving in the cause of God is armed struggle in defense of the community. Those who wage this form of jihad risk everything in an all-out struggle in service to the community and to God.
Today, Islam as a deen, and the world Muslim community, is under attack. 9/11 was a mass human sacrifice designed to ritually inaugurate a New World Order of global government by satanists and atheists. With Christianity and the other big religions co-opted or neutered, only Islam stands between the perpetrators of 9/11 and their goal of a New World Order. Under these circumstances, is incumbent upon Muslims to wage effective jihad in self-defense and in defense of our religion, and in defense of all of our fellow human beings and our planet, fi sabili llah [in the way of God].
After thinking things through, I have concluded that the most effective way that I can wage jihad is by wielding the weapon of truth — especially the truth about 9/11. The 9/11 perpetrators seem to have made several big mistakes and left unmistakable evidence incriminating themselves. Their single biggest mistake, apparently, was failing to demolish World Trade Center Building 7 on the morning of 9/11; presumably due to some logistical problem, they had to wait to demolish it until late that afternoon. Anyone who spends a few minutes informing themselves about WTC-7 must either choose intellectual dishonesty, or admit that 9/11 was an inside job. See: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MxmdYOorqs0
When Americans and Westerners face the fact that 9/11 was an inside job, their attitude toward Islam, and the New World Order’s war on Islam, changes radically. They realize that they, and Muslims, share a common enemy. They become deserters from the war on Islam, and join the oppressed peoples of the world, and the bearers of the scriptures, in a common struggle for justice.
While I am very serious about waging this “truth jihad,” I realize that Western culture fears and loathes the word “jihad.” So I use a technique common in certain forms of comic literature — for example, the novel Don Quixote — of being simultaneously serious and humorous. I make fun of myself by using hyperbole (exaggeration) in order to play the role of the “crazy radical jihadi for truth.” What is most hilarious, and most deeply serious, is that this “crazy radical jihadi” character I’m playing, like King Lear’s fool, is the only sane character in the play, the only one who understands and tells the whole, painful truth. The humor makes my uncompromisingly honest message palatable for Western audiences. As the saying goes, “If you tell the truth, make it funny or they’ll kill you.”
By accepting this role, which Allah’s qadr seems to have prepared for me, I am straddling the boundary between Islamic and Western culture, between seriousness and humor, between reality and imagination, in a unique way. As an American Muslim literary scholar with an odd Irish sense of humor, and a whole lot of outrage about 9/11 and the 9/11 wars, this is my way of waging jihad fi sabili llah.
KZ: What’s your precise stance on the 9/11 attacks? Do you believe that the U.S. officials had foreknowledge of the incident? Do you think that it was an inside job or a false flag operation? Have you traced any sign of the Israel’s involvement in the attacks?
KB: To know means to believe based on sufficient evidence. So I know, not just believe, that 9/11 was a false-flag attack, that many individuals at or near the top of the US Executive Branch, military, and intelligence apparatus were complicit in the attack, and that the state of Israel and its American agents were heavily involved. This is the inescapable conclusion of anyone who reads David Ray Griffin’s books on the subject, alongside Bollyn’s Solving 9/11, with an open mind.
KZ: Your publication “Bin Laden’s Dead, the Tape is Phony” is considered to be the first pro-9/110-truth op-ed ever written and published in a mainstream media outlet. You have written three such op-eds in “Capital Times” of Madison. Why don’t the mainstream media publish op-eds and articles revealing the truth of 9/11 attack? Why do they shun the publication of materials which are critical of the mainstream interpretation of the attacks?
KB: The American mainstream media are owned by just a few huge corporations, and thoroughly penetrated by the CIA. Google “Operation Mockingbird”. The owners and key decision-makers of these outlets are disproportionately Jewish and pro-Zionist (see Philip Weiss’s “Do Jews Dominate in American Media? And So What if We Do?”). Deep down inside, a great many of these Zionists suspect the truth about 9/11, and are terrified that if revealed it could trigger an anti-Jewish pogram and/or the destruction of Israel. Additionally, many Americans, Jewish and otherwise, who are not Zionists, feel threatened by the possibility that the truth about 9/11 would reveal them as fools, and perhaps even annihilate their whole world-view. It is difficult for journalists who are trained to believe that America is an exceptional nation, and that America’s leaders always have good intentions, to believe that their own leaders would conspire in the ritual slaughter of thousands of their own people. The few who are cynical enough to realize how evil their leaders are, are also cynical enough to know on which side their bread is buttered. Everyone in the media knows that breathing a word of truth about 9/11 will kill your career. It may not be coincidental that shortly after publishing my three 9/11 truth op-eds, the Capital Times was closed down by the company that owned it, leaving Madison with only one newspaper: The lying, corrupt Wisconsin State Journal.
KZ: In October 2004, the 9/11 hero William Rodriguez filed a lawsuit against the then President George W. Bush and 155 other parties and accused them of complicity in the 9/11 attacks. He claimed that the Twin Towers were devastated by means of “controlled demolitions” which the members of New York fire department were ordered on instructions of the CIA. Is it true that FDNY conspired with Larry Silverstein under the patronage of CIA to deliberately destroy the Twin Towers?
KB: The short answer is “yes.” But it should be noted that the NY Fire Department was not complicit as a whole department. Rather, its leadership is penetrated by the CIA and perhaps Mossad, in the same way that state governments, state and local police departments, the FBI and other agencies are penetrated by the CIA and other intelligence agencies. According to Jesse Ventura, upon his inauguration as Governor of Minnesota, a group of state government officials who were also undercover CIA officers summoned him to a briefing in which it was made clear who was really running the State of Minnesota. The FDNY is undoubtedly infiltrated as well. Larry Silverstein’s hesitation in mentioning the “er…Fire Department Commander” who decided to “pull” WTC-7 suggests that this “FDNY Commander” was actually a high level intelligence operative whose job may have included a cover position in FDNY.
KZ: Physicist Dr. Crockett Grabbe has pointed out in a 2007 article that the NIST account of the 9/11 attacks has been thoroughly erroneous, unrealistic and fallacious. He has pointed out that “the rapidly expanding huge concrete dust clouds from the towers, the very-quick appearance of multiple squibs on all 3 collapsing buildings, and the destruction of hundreds of autos for several blocks around the World Trade Center from these squibs” indicate that the Twin Towers did not simply collapse as a result of the planes crashing into the towers, but due to explosive materials. Jim Hoffman’s article also attests to the same fact and admits the presence of unignited aluminothermic explosives in dust samples from the Twin Towers, whose chemical signature matches previously documented aluminothermic residues found in the same dust samples. What does this fact signify? Who should be held accountable if we admit that the explosive materials brought down the Twin Towers?
KB: Everyone who is lying about it and who should know better — meaning the entire GW Bush Administration, the top levels of the military and intelligence command, all of the NIST people responsible for the scientific fraud represented by NIST’s reports on the WTC, and a great many others (see www.whodidit.org/) should be immediately arrested and aggressively interrogated, with relatively leniency offered in exchange for the whole truth delivered in a timely manner. If our judicial system cannot do this, citizens, including honest police and military, should arm themselves in preparation to make citizens arrests in what will amount to a second American revolution. Likewise, foreign nations ought to demand the truth about 9/11, and to cut off all relations with the USA until war crimes prosecutions reveal the full truth about 9/11 and the 9/11 wars.
KZ: You are a founding member of the Muslim-Jewish-Christina Alliance which is aimed at improving interfaith dialogue, coexistence and understanding in light of the 9/11 events. It’s a very fantastic goal to bring together the followers of divine religion and improve mutual understanding and peaceful coexistence between them; however, there are people who don’t tolerate this religious convergence and want to sow the seeds of incompatibility, dissention and strife between the Muslims, Jews and Christians. They are extremist and radical conservatives who follow the Marx’s viewpoint that religion is the “opium of masses”, hence downgrading interfaith dialogue and undermining it. How is it possible to realize an all-out, all-encompassing interfaith dialogue while the media moguls, hawkish statesmen and warmongering politicians want to bring about conflict and disagreement between the followers of divine religions?
KB: That is a very good question! I am disappointed at the slow progress of 9/11 truth in the Jewish and Christian communities, and by the failure of the global Muslim community to offer its full support to the 9/11 truth movement. The New World Order atheists and satanists have cleverly pitted the revealed religions against each other, while fostering an atmosphere of hopelessness and despondency that prevents many from taking action. Since Muslims by and large are better acquainted with the facts, both about 9/11, and about the brother- and sisterhood between good Read more
The attack on the USS Liberty by Israeli warplanes and torpedo boats on June 8, 1967 has almost faded from memory, but new evidence suggests that the White House might actually have had prior knowledge that the ship would be struck by Israel’s armed forces. In the worst attack ever carried out on a U.S. Naval vessel in peacetime, 34 American sailors and civilian personnel were killed and 171 more wounded in the two hour assault, which was clearly intended to sink the intelligence-gathering vessel operating in international waters collecting information on the ongoing Six-Day War between Israel and its Arab neighbors.
The Israelis and their supporters in the United States have always claimed the attack was a tragic mistake while many of the surviving Liberty crew believe that it was anything but: They assert that the vessel was flying an oversized American flag and was clearly identifiable as a U.S. Navy vessel. The ship’s commanding officer, Captain William McGonagle, was awarded a Congressional Medal of Honor for his role in keeping the ship afloat, though President Lyndon Baines Johnson broke with tradition by refusing to hold the medal ceremony in the White House, or to award it personally, delegating that task to the Secretary of the Navy in an unpublicized presentation at the Washington Navy Yard.
The Liberty crew was sworn to secrecy over the incident and a hastily-convened court of inquiry headed by Admiral John McCain acted under orders from Washington to declare the attack a case of mistaken identity. The inquiry’s senior legal counsel Captain Ward Boston, who subsequently declared the attack to be a “deliberate effort to sink an American ship and murder its entire crew,” also described how “President Lyndon Johnson and Secretary of Defense Robert McNamara ordered him to conclude that the attack was a case of ‘mistaken identity’ despite overwhelming evidence to the contrary.” The court’s findings were rewritten and sections relating to possible war crimes, such as the machine-gunning of life rafts, were excised. Following in his father’s footsteps, Senator John McCain of Arizona has used his position on the Senate Armed Services Committee to effectively block any reconvening of a board of inquiry to reexamine the evidence. Most of the documents relating to the Liberty incident have never been released to the public.
One of the more intriguing allegations surrounding the Liberty incident is the claim that a United States Navy submarine was in the area when the attack took place. A number of submarine crewmen have surfaced anonymously to say that they were on one of several subs reported to be in the area on intelligence-gathering missions. Some stated their belief that photos were taken of the attack itself, but, fearing reprisals from the government, none would go public with their claims.
More recently, a crewman on the USS Amberjack, a diesel-powered intelligence-gathering sub, has provided an account of his ship’s activities on that day in June to two Liberty survivors. The sailor, Larry Bryant, agreed to go on radio with survivors Phil Tourney and Ron Kukal to discuss his experiences but inexplicably got cold feet and broke off contact. However, several extended phone conversations had already provided some intriguing insights into what had taken place.
Several Liberty crewmen reported seeing a periscope during the attack and it has generally been assumed that it was Israeli, but according to Bryant, it was actually the USS Amberjack. The submarine was near enough to the incident to clearly hear throughout the ship the reverberations of every round fired into the Liberty’s hull. The sub’s crew knew that a U.S. Navy vessel was under attack, but the Amberjack was only lightly armed and in no position to intervene. The sub remained immobile between the Liberty and some of its attackers and the sub’s crewmen feared that they themselves might be hit by the the Israeli warships’ torpedos.
As Larry Bryant was a crewman, he had no idea why the submarine was in that spot on that day, but he did note how the sub had raised its periscope and was observing the attack as it unfolded. More interestingly, the submarine had been equipped with a platform for the mounting of a video camera, which operated through the periscope and the Amberjack both filmed and photographed the entire incident. Some crewmen noted that the Liberty’s large American flag was clearly visible through the periscope during the attack, disputing the subsequent Israeli contention that the ship was not flying any flag.
The Amberjack’s Captain August Hubal, now retired and living in Virginia, has denied that his ship was anywhere near the Liberty on June 8th, but his account is contradicted by the ship’s log which confirms that it was indeed in the area. Hubal, who was described by Bryant as an obsessive, “by the rules” officer who would go to his stateroom and blow his brains out if so ordered, later warned his crew to forget about their role in the Liberty attack or face the consequences. The photos and videos of the incident made by the Amberjack were subsequently couriered to Washington by a ship’s officer, where they were turned over to the Pentagon.
Part of Hubal’s reluctance to discuss what he was doing on that day might be traced to the fact that his Read more
Filed Under Al Qaeda, Big Brother, CIA, Evidence, FBI, False Flag, Global Awakening, Independent Media, Iran, Iraq, Israel, Military Industrial Complex, Mossad, Police State, Propaganda | Comments Off
The Intel Hub
By Alex Thomas
February 16th, 2011
Just days after Al Hallor, San Diego assistant port director and an officer with Customs and Border Protection, admitted that weapons of “mass effect” had entered a port somewhere in the San Diego area, Dr. Vahid Majidi, the FBI’s assistant director in charge of the FBI’s Weapons of Mass Destruction Directorate has stated that there is a 100% chance of a WMD attack in America.
Speaking to Newsmax, Dr. Majidi seemed eerily sure of an imminent attack in America.
“The notion of probability of a WMD attack being low or high is a moot point because we know the probability is 100 percent,” Majidi says. “We’ve seen this in the past, and we will see it in the future. There is going to be an attack using chemical, biological or radiological material.”
With documented evidence that Al Qaeda was created by western intelligence and that the FBI has literally given lone wolf terrorists multiple bombs, the idea that the assistant director in charge of the FBI’s Weapons of Mass Destruction Directorate is openly declaring a WMD attack will happen should raise alarms throughout America.
While Majidi did say terrorists would most likely employ chemical, biological, or radiological weapons rather than a nuclear device, the idea that a major nuke could go off in an American city is nothing new.
On February 9th, ABC 10News in San Diego interviewed Al Hallor about security issues at a San Diego Port. Hallor then went on to drop a bombshell, admitting that an unamed government agency had recovered a weapon of mass effect in the last year.
Since the first report and our story, “San Diego Port Officer Says Nukes Have Been Found In An American Port,” Fox News and multiple other major outlets have ran a watered down verison of the original story.
The rumors of missing nukes, illegally transported on a B-52 from Minot AFB to Barksdale AFB in Louisiana, have lent credibilty to the fact that rogue elements within our government and the Israeli government are planning some sort of nuclear “false flag.”
In early August, Gordon Duff writing for Veterans Today warned of a possible nuclear attack which involved Israel, Pakistan and Iran.
“The National Research Council, part of the National Academy of Science, heavy on politics and light on science, announced that America was no longer able to track nukes threatening our shores. Their report titled Nuclear Forensics: A Capability at Risk, released last week, outlines the details of a secret study requested by the Departments of Homeland Security, Defense and Energy, specifically the National Nuclear Security Administration.”
Essentially the report highlighted the fact that if a nuclear bomb was detonated we would be unable to tell who made it.
“Another piece of the puzzle involved a federal task force, Defense, Energy, FBI, descending on a warehouse in Greenfield, Indiana under the guise of a “records search.” This “Waco style” assault on a facility storing furniture for college dorm rooms was much more than it seemed. No case, criminal or civil, provided any underlying reason for the search,” wrote Duff.
Listen to our early August interview with Gordon Duff here.
Similar to the months leading up to 9/11, the public is being conditioned to accept the fact that a nuclear or biological weapon of mass destruction WILL go off in an American city in the very near future. This is absolutely unacceptable considering Homeland Security is installing a police state throughout America yet somehow cannot stop cave dwelling ninjas?
The US government is offering private intelligence companies contracts to create software to manage “fake people” on social media sites and create the illusion of consensus on controversial issues.
The contract calls for the development of “Persona Management Software” which would help the user create and manage a variety of distinct fake profiles online. The job listing was discussed in recently leaked emails from the private security firm HBGary after an attack by internet activist last week.
According to the contract, the software would “protect the identity of government agencies” by employing a number of false signals to convince users that the poster is in fact a real person. A single user could manage unique background information and status updates for up to 10 fake people from a single computer.
The software enables the government to shield its identity through a number of different methods including the ability to assign unique IP addresses to each persona and the ability to make it appear as though the user is posting from other locations around the world.
Included in HBGary’s leaked emails was a government proposal for the government contract. The document describes how they would ‘friend’ real people on Facebook as a way to convey government messages. The document reads:
- “Those names can be cross-referenced across Facebook, twitter, MySpace, and other social media services to collect information on each individual. Once enough information is collected this information can be used to gain access to these individuals social circles.
- Even the most restrictive and security conscious of persons can be exploited. Through the targeting and information reconnaissance phase, a person’s hometown and high school will be revealed. An adversary can create a classmates.com account at the same high school and year and find out people you went to high school with that do not have Facebook accounts, then create the account and send a friend request. Under the mutual friend decision, which is where most people can be exploited, an adversary can look at a targets friend list if it is exposed and find a targets most socially promiscuous friends, the ones that have over 300-500 friends, friend them to develop mutual friends before sending a friend request to the target. To that end friend’s accounts can be compromised and used to post malicious material to a targets wall. When choosing to participate in social media an individual is only as protected as his/her weakest friend.”
Other documents in the leaked emails include quotes from HBGary CEO Aaron Barr saying, “There are a variety of social media tricks we can use to add a level of realness to all fictitious personas… Using hashtags and gaming some location based check-in services we can make it appear as if a persona was actually at a conference and introduce himself/herself to key individuals as part of the exercise, as one example.”
Additional emails between HBGary employees, usually originating from Barr, discuss the vulnerability social networking causes.
One employee wrote, “and now social networks are closing the gap between attacker and victim, to the point I just found (via linked-in) 112 females, wives of service men, all stationed at Hurlbert Field FL - in case you don’t know this is where the CIA flies all their “private” airlines out of. What a damn joke - the U.S. is no longer the super power in cyber, and probably won’t be in other areas soon.”
Barr also predicted a steady rise in clandestine or secret government operations to stem the flow of sensitive information. “I would say there is going to be a resurgence of black ops in the coming year as decision makers settle with our inadequacies… Critical infrastructure, finance, defense industrial base, and government have rivers of unauthorized communications flowing from them and there are no real efforts to stop it.”
The creation of internet propaganda software is only one of HBGary’s controversial activities. According to Wikileaks competitor and occasional collaborator Cryptome.org, several other progressive organizations were intended to be targeted including anti-war activist, anti-torture organizations and groups opposed to the US Chamber of Commerce.
Filed Under Afghanistan, Anti-War, Big Brother, CIA, Censorship, Documentary, Evidence, Global Awakening, Iraq, Israel, Mainstream Media, Media reporting, Military Industrial Complex, Mossad, New World Order, Operation Mockingbird, Pentagon, YouTube, cointelpro | Comments Off
Filed Under 9-11 truth, Afghanistan, Al Qaeda, Anti-War, Big Brother, CIA, Censorship, Constitution, Declaration of Independence, Evidence, False Flag, Federal Reserve, First Amendment, Fourth Amendment, Global Awakening, Global Privatization, ISI, Independent Media, International Bankers, Iran, Iraq, Israel, Mainstream Media, Media reporting, Mercenary armies, Military Industrial Complex, Military policing citizens, Mossad, Obama, Operation Mockingbird, Pakistan, Palestine, Pentagon, Police State, treason | Comments Off
|By Dr. Paul Craig Roberts|
|Global Research, October 16, 2010|
Does anyone remember the “cakewalk war” that would last six weeks, cost $50-$60 billion, and be paid for out of Iraqi oil revenues?
Does anyone remember that White House economist Lawrence Lindsey was fired by Dubya because Lindsey estimated that the Iraq war could cost as much as $200 billion?
Lindsey was fired for over-estimating the cost of a war that, according to Joseph Stiglitz and Linda Bilmes, has cost 15 times more than Lindsey estimated. And the US still has 50,000 troops in Iraq.
Does anyone remember that just prior to the US invasion of Iraq, the US government declared victory over the Taliban in Afghanistan?
Does anyone remember that the reason Dubya gave for invading Iraq was Saddam Hussein’s weapons of mass destruction, weapons that the US government knew did not exist?
Are Americans aware that the same neoconservatives who made these fantastic mistakes, or told these fabulous lies, are still in control of the government in Washington?
The “war on terror” is now in its tenth year. What is it really all about?
The bottom line answer is that the “war on terror” is about creating real terrorists. The US government desperately needs real terrorists in order to justify its expansion of its wars against Muslim countries and to keep the American people sufficiently fearful that they continue to accept the police state that provides “security from terrorists,” but not from the government that has discarded civil liberties.
The US government creates terrorists by invading Muslim countries, wrecking infrastructure and killing vast numbers of civilians. The US also creates terrorists by installing puppet governments to rule over Muslims and by using the puppet governments to murder and persecute citizens as is occurring on a vast scale in Pakistan today.
Neoconservatives used 9/11 to launch their plan for US world hegemony. Their plan fit with the interests of America’s ruling oligarchies. Wars are good for the profits of the military/security complex, about which President Eisenhower warned us in vain a half century ago. American hegemony is good for the oil industry’s control over resources
(updated below - Update II - Update III - Update IV)
Cass Sunstein has long been one of Barack Obama’s closest confidants. Often mentioned as a likely Obama nominee to the Supreme Court, Sunstein is currently Obama’s head of the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs where, among other things, he is responsible for “overseeing policies relating to privacy, information quality, and statistical programs.” In 2008, while at Harvard Law School, Sunstein co-wrote a truly pernicious paper proposing that the U.S. Government employ teams of covert agents and pseudo-”independent” advocates to “cognitively infiltrate” online groups and websites — as well as other activist groups — which advocate views that Sunstein deems “false conspiracy theories” about the Government. This would be designed to increase citizens’ faith in government officials and undermine the credibility of conspiracists. The paper’s abstract can be read, and the full paper downloaded, here.
Sunstein advocates that the Government’s stealth infiltration should be accomplished by sending covert agents into “chat rooms, online social networks, or even real-space groups.” He also proposes that the Government make secret payments to so-called “independent” credible voices to bolster the Government’s messaging (on the ground that those who don’t believe government sources will be more inclined to listen to those who appear independent while secretly acting on behalf of the Government). This program would target those advocating false “conspiracy theories,” which they define to mean: “an attempt to explain an event or practice by reference to the machinations of powerful people, who have also managed to conceal their role.” Sunstein’s 2008 paper was flagged by this blogger, and then amplified in an excellent report by Raw Story’s Daniel Tencer.
There’s no evidence that the Obama administration has actually implemented a program exactly of the type advocated by Sunstein, though in light of this paper and the fact that Sunstein’s position would include exactly such policies, that question certainly ought to be asked. Regardless, Sunstein’s closeness to the President, as well as the highly influential position he occupies, merits an examination of the mentality behind what he wrote. This isn’t an instance where some government official wrote a bizarre paper in college 30 years ago about matters unrelated to his official powers; this was written 18 months ago, at a time when the ascendancy of Sunstein’s close friend to the Presidency looked likely, in exactly the area he now oversees. Additionally, the government-controlled messaging that Read morekeep looking »