We had a server outage, and we're rebuilding the site. Most of the site features won't work. Thank you for your patience.
imc indymedia

Los Angeles Indymedia : Activist News

white themeblack themered themetheme help
About Us Contact Us Calendar Publish RSS
latest news
best of news




A-Infos Radio

Indymedia On Air

Dope-X-Resistance-LA List


IMC Network:

Original Cities

www.indymedia.org africa: ambazonia canarias estrecho / madiaq kenya nigeria south africa canada: hamilton london, ontario maritimes montreal ontario ottawa quebec thunder bay vancouver victoria windsor winnipeg east asia: burma jakarta japan korea manila qc europe: abruzzo alacant andorra antwerpen armenia athens austria barcelona belarus belgium belgrade bristol brussels bulgaria calabria croatia cyprus emilia-romagna estrecho / madiaq euskal herria galiza germany grenoble hungary ireland istanbul italy la plana liege liguria lille linksunten lombardia london madrid malta marseille nantes napoli netherlands nice northern england norway oost-vlaanderen paris/Île-de-france patras piemonte poland portugal roma romania russia saint-petersburg scotland sverige switzerland thessaloniki torun toscana toulouse ukraine united kingdom valencia latin america: argentina bolivia chiapas chile chile sur cmi brasil colombia ecuador mexico peru puerto rico qollasuyu rosario santiago tijuana uruguay valparaiso venezuela venezuela oceania: adelaide aotearoa brisbane burma darwin jakarta manila melbourne perth qc sydney south asia: india mumbai united states: arizona arkansas asheville atlanta austin baltimore big muddy binghamton boston buffalo charlottesville chicago cleveland colorado columbus dc hawaii houston hudson mohawk kansas city la madison maine miami michigan milwaukee minneapolis/st. paul new hampshire new jersey new mexico new orleans north carolina north texas nyc oklahoma philadelphia pittsburgh portland richmond rochester rogue valley saint louis san diego san francisco san francisco bay area santa barbara santa cruz, ca sarasota seattle tampa bay tennessee urbana-champaign vermont western mass worcester west asia: armenia beirut israel palestine process: fbi/legal updates mailing lists process & imc docs tech volunteer projects: print radio satellite tv video regions: oceania united states topics: biotech

Surviving Cities

www.indymedia.org africa: canada: quebec east asia: japan europe: athens barcelona belgium bristol brussels cyprus germany grenoble ireland istanbul lille linksunten nantes netherlands norway portugal united kingdom latin america: argentina cmi brasil rosario oceania: aotearoa united states: austin big muddy binghamton boston chicago columbus la michigan nyc portland rochester saint louis san diego san francisco bay area santa cruz, ca tennessee urbana-champaign worcester west asia: palestine process: fbi/legal updates process & imc docs projects: radio satellite tv
printable version - js reader version - view hidden posts - tags and related articles

The Witchhunt For The "Terrorists" Begins

by Rick Giombetti Tuesday, Sep. 25, 2001 at 11:24 PM
rickjgio@speakeasy.org Seattle

Are you or have you ever been a member of an organization affiliated with Osama bin Laden's terror network?

If there are any lingering doubts about the witchhunt nature of the recently christened "War On Terrorism," then an October 1 U.S. News & World Report special report on the "bin Laden Terror Network" is one example that should put them to rest. A brief article and graphic appearing on pgs. 20 and 21 further elaborates the official U.S. government position in more detail. Published immediately following President Bush's speech to Congress on September 20, in which he repeated the line that Saudi millionaire in exile in Afghanistan Osama bin Laden is the ring leader of a terrorist network with members in more than 60 nations, this is but one example of the McCarthyesque nature of the crusade against terrorism.

The article is titled, "How a terror network funds attacks - and hides its tracks." Although the article by line is attributed to David E. Kaplan and Joshua Kurlantzick, it is can be seen as little more than a U.S. State Department press release. Said article uses only unnamed sources, except for a quote by a former State Department official named Jonathan Winer. The graphic is of a map of the world showing where "al-Qaeda cells" and "terrorist groups affiliated with al-Qaeda" are located "in more than 60 nations" (I counted about 65 nations on the graphic). The graphic describes the "al-Qaeda cells" as "Cells from hell." The sources for the graphic are attributed to Jane's Intelligence Review, Congressional Research Service and the U.S. State Department.

So what nations are counted among the "more than 60 nations" harboring "al-Qaeda cells"? The usual suspects, of course, including Palestinian Authority areas in the Occupied Territories, Lebanon, Iraq, Iran, Libya, Egypt, Israel and every other country in the Middle East except for Oman. The list also includes the names of some countries that are eye opening to say the least. Countries like South Africa, Ecuador, Brazil, Paraguay,Uruguay, Argentina and Ecuador.

I would like to know what connections the above named six countries could have to the "bin Laden Network." Most likely none but that doesn't matter in the new "War On Terrorism." This should be cause for concern given that all of the above named countries have vibrant social movements opposed to U.S. policies in the Third World. Could the State Department name political parties like the Worker's Party of Brazil, or groups of individuals opposed to IMF backed austerity measures, like recently laid off workers in Argentina known as "piqueros," as member cells of the "bin Laden Network"? Why not? I couldn't think of a better way for the Argentine government to silence the current groundswell of protest over the latest fleecing of the country by Argentine elites and New York bankers than to finger protesters as members of the "bin Laden Network."

Could the reason why South Africa is on this shit list of more than 60 nations harboring "al-Qaeda cells" be because of its hosting of the recent U.N. sponsored conference on racism? It could be given the well merited criticisms of Israeli and U.S. government policies that came out of that conference. Implicit in this de facto blacklisting of South Africa as a harbor for bin Laden backed terrorists is a warning from the U.S. to other nations that might want to host future U.N. conferences on racism: Don't you dare discuss issues of racism in both Israel and the U.S. or we'll blacklist your nation as a harbor for bin Laden backed terrorists as well.

Two Latin American countries not on the current terrorist shit list include Colombia and Mexico, both of which have strong guerilla movements. This should not be surprising since Washington can send counter-insurgency military aid to these countries under the guise of the "War On Drugs." What better way to increase the military aid to other Latin American countries than under the guise of fighting the "War On Terrorism."

Another incendiary claim made in the article is how bin Laden's associates purportedly help raise money. One sentence states that "Bin Laden's followers also bring in extra money doing everything from fishing to driving taxis." Given that this sentence is located in a section of the article titled "Drug Money," it comes across as an implicit suggestion for local, state and national law enforcement agencies to target Arabs and/or Muslims or people who "look" Arab and/or Muslim for surveillance and harassment. The ugly stereotypes in the sentence invokes images of brown men with beards wearing turbans, driving taxi cabs or working behind the counter at gas stations. This is incredibly irresponsible since hundreds of attacks against people, whether or not they are Arab and/or Muslim, have happened nationwide since S11. It is precisely these kinds of racist media stereotypes that lynch mobs of Patriot Pinheads attacking mosques, cab drivers, gas station attendants and anybody who "looks" like they are Arab

and/or Muslim, including non-Arab and non-Muslim Sikhs, are responding to.

Perhaps the most chilling claim is made in a side bar to the article titled, "Sources of financing for al Qaeda." Under "Islamic Charities" the side bar states "Al Qaeda siphons off money from selected charities, mosques and relief agencies." This should be seen as an implicit green light for law enforcement agencies to start seizing the assets of mosques and/or charitable organizations with any link to the Middle East or the "bin Laden Network," no matter how real or imagined. There is no reason to believe that the new "War On Terrorism" won't inspire unconstitutional asset forfeitures without due process, similar to those justified in the name of fighting the "War On Drugs."

Nobody with a rudimentary knowledge of world affairs can take an "article" and graphic like the one cited above seriously. Unfortunately, a majority of the public consumes this kind of nonsense without ever hearing or seeing anybody correctly debunking it as little more than government propaganda. It all gives the impression of a global army headed by bin Laden that simply doesn't exist. There is no doubt that bin Laden and his organization has some wealth and support in the Arab and greater Muslim worlds but this nonsense about "a network of terrorists in more than 60 nations" being bandied about by government officials and terrorism pundits should be getting mercilessly ridiculed in the media. It's reminiscent of past exaggerations of the military capabilities of official U.S. enemies. The exaggerated claims of Soviet military might during the Cold War by the CIA come to mind. The joke that was the Iraqi Army being made out as a formidable military force 11 years ago during the build up that lead up to the Gulf War is another example.

In less than two weeks the S11 terror attacks have been seized upon by the U.S. government to further its global objectives. The U.S. government now has a potent new weapon to use in trying to silence activists for social justice world wide, whether they engage in armed struggle or not. The potential for serious violations of basic human rights on the grounds that it is being done in the name of fighting the "War On Terrorism" should be obvious enough. Yes, Canada and the U.S. are among the nations harboring "al-Qaeda cells." How much easier it will be in the future to discredit protesters as "terrorists" in the media. Want to hold a Reclaim The Streets block party in your neighborhood or a protest against an upcoming industry gathering coming to your city? What better way to justify a police crack down in the media than by smearing all of the protesters as "terrorists with connections to Osama bin Laden."

The "War On Terrorism" has only just begun but its potential for fomenting reaction and being used as an excuse for massive human rights violations worldwide are becoming more obvious with each passing day. The comparison of the "War On Terrorism" here in the U.S. to the McCarthy inspired purges of the left in government and the film and television industries during the '50s is an apt one. It could become a very effective tool for attacking dissent and left activists should brace themselves for the accusations of being "terrorists linked to Osama bin Laden" that could be thrown their way in the future.

Report this post as:

Local News

Woolsey Fire: Worst News of 2018? J01 12:18AM

Oppose Environmentally-Harmful Development D10 4:03AM

Oppose Environmentally-Harmful Development D10 3:58AM

OUR HOUSE Grief Support Center Presents Night for Hope O30 5:38PM

Marshall Tuck’s racist dog whistle O27 5:01AM

Marshall Tuck’s ethnocentrism contradicts Californian values O27 4:32AM

Contra Costa-Hawkins O25 3:48AM

Debunking Some Anti-Prop 10 Propaganda O12 6:56AM

Why Should California Choose De Leon Over Feinstein? O10 9:55PM

Change Links September 2018 posted S02 10:22PM

More Scandals Rock Southern California Nuke Plant San Onofre A30 11:09PM

Site Outage Friday A30 3:49PM

Change Links August 2018 A14 1:56AM

Setback for Developer of SC Farm Land A12 11:09PM

More problems at Shutdown San Onofre Nuke J29 10:40PM

Change Links 2018 July posted J09 8:27PM

More Pix: "Families Belong Together," Pasadena J02 7:16PM

"Families Belong Together" March, Pasadena J02 7:08PM

Short Report on the Families Belong Together Protest in Los Angeles J30 11:26PM

Summer 2018 National Immigrant Solidarity Network News Alert! J11 6:58AM

More Local News...

Other/Breaking News


Judge Delays Ruling on Puerto Rico Debt Deal White House Opposes Island's Food Assistance J18 6:04PM



Paraphysique de proxémie guerrière J18 7:59AM


FARCELONA 8.17.2017 J17 3:23PM



PR Debt Cancel, Judge Reviews Cofina Debt J16 9:04PM

Réseautage, fragmentation du capital J16 4:20PM

Paraphysique de manipulation mentale et sociale J15 9:51AM

The Global Justice Project and Human Survival: We're Badly Off Track J15 5:08AM

The Global Justice Project and Human Survival: We're Badly Off Track J15 5:08AM

The Global Justice Project and Human Survival: We're Badly Off Track J15 5:08AM

Markets as a Fetish, Globalization, and Dissent Management J14 1:03PM

State Debts - The Primal German Fear J13 5:09PM

Sans liberté, sans égalité, sans fraternité J13 8:09AM

From Progressive Neoliberalism to Trump - and Beyond J12 9:22PM

Copper Cures Cancer J11 1:42PM

Steven Taylor, Investor who Evicts J11 9:24AM

Du sectarisme, des sectes, des clans J11 8:10AM

“Animaniacs in Concert!” Starring Voice Legend Rob Paulsen J10 6:34PM

Patrick Kilpatrick discusses and signs Dying for Living J09 11:51PM

SexActs vs Sexuality USA 2018 Invitations to Power Marriages without Affection J09 8:36PM

Changer de mentalité, changer de société J09 9:17AM

Teacher Strike? Time for Labor Studies J09 6:26AM

December 2018 Honduras Coup Update J08 10:12PM

More Breaking News...
© 2000-2018 Los Angeles Independent Media Center. Unless otherwise stated by the author, all content is free for non-commercial reuse, reprint, and rebroadcast, on the net and elsewhere. Opinions are those of the contributors and are not necessarily endorsed by the Los Angeles Independent Media Center. Running sf-active v0.9.4 Disclaimer | Privacy