bank robbery analogy
written Spring & Summer, 2004
Imagine a hypothetical situation where a team of vicious thieves plots an exceptionally violent bank robbery in the downtown financial district of a major city. Numerous anomalies are noticed during the commission of this crime.
The bank tellers are not able to send out an alarm to the police even though banks have numerous hidden silent alarms for foiling robbery. The guards at the bank somehow take much longer to call the police for assistance than they have done on previous occasions, raising questions among bank customers whether orders were given to the the guards to "stand down" and not interfere.
The police take an extraordinarily long amount of time to show up on the scene, despite an unblemished record of fast response to prior robberies.
The cops who do eventually respond are not dispatched from the nearest police station, but from a suburban police force many miles away that travels far below emergency speeds to intercept the robbers. Some of the responding officers travel the exact opposite direction from the bank when they do leave the station, and arrive on the scene too late to catch the criminals.
The criminals are business partners of the chief of police and the Mayor, the Mayor's youngest brother is a director of the company providing security to the bank, and the City's comptroller (in charge of the money) came from a company in charge of remotely accessing the bank's electronics (which could explain the lack of transmission of an alarm at the start of the robbery).
The City Council passes new laws immediately after the robbery to crack down on the financial freedoms of the town's citizens, using the pretext that the police had an "intelligence failure" caused by inadequate budgets and inability of different departments to properly communicate with each other.
The police do not act surprised when notified the robbery is underway. The commander of the nearest police station continues working at his desk despite the robbery across the street. The Mayor is holding a photo opportunity at a nearby elementary school, and continues reading to second graders even after his assistant whispers in his ear that bank robbers had just committed the largest mass murder in the city's history.
The police forces of the city and nearby cities were following the robbers before their assault on the bank, and the identity of the robbers (as declared by police spokespersons after the fact) is disputed by press accounts that several of the robbers have good alibis for being in other cities at the time.
Long after the fact, information surfaces that the police were conducting practice exercises simulating official response to bank robbers. Some of the responding officers were away at this "war game" at the police training academy and therefore were unable to apprehend the perpetrators. The honest cops who were in the station were confused by other drills simulating robberies at the other banks in the city, drills that were scheduled by the top political and police leadership of the city at the same time as the real robberies, which made it difficult for the honest cops to determine which bank to protect until after the crimes were completed.
The newspapers report that nearby towns warned the police that the robbery was about to happen, but never collect all of these warnings into one report to show the overwhelming evidence that a faction of the City's elite deliberately allowed the robbers to act unhindered.
A few parts of this story are later described in a popular film made by one of the city's most notorious dissident film makers. This film shows how the Mayor had no response when informed of the robbery, yet declines repeated offers to depict the refusal of the police to follow standard operating procedures or the fact that top police officials simultaneously scheduled simulations that paralyzed the police reactions. The mayor's opponents refuse to consider any suggestions that the bank robbery was an "inside job" despite a considerable amount of evidence, and decline repeated opportunities to mention these events during the mayor's re-election campaign.
The media avoid the story because of
- foundation grants from philanthropic organizations tied to the city's business elite,
- fear of reprisal by the robbers' backers, and
- the ridicule factor encountered by citizens who find it difficult to believe in official complicity.
This last factor is exacerbated by the plotters' tactic of leaking most of the true facts of the conspiracy to anti-Semitic websites, bad TV shows and obviously unreliable writers who are not considered credible. Even the region's liberal, "alternative" newspaper that had previously published accurate reports about the Mayor's corruption scandals attacks independent journalists who dare to describe these anomalies. In addition, the Mayor's political assistants create their own websites and several documentary films that pretend to expose the Mayor's complicity in the events, yet weave accurate information with bogus material in a desperate attempt to muddy the waters that make it difficult for the citizens to figure out the truth.
On Election Day, political supporters of the incumbent Mayor install questionable voting machines in key electoral districts to ensure his re-election. The results are quickly endorsed as legitimate by the political elite, the TV stations and the newspaper, yet poll watchers and independent reporters note that numerous opponents of the Mayor were harassed at the polls or forced to wait all day in the cold rain to vote, which reduced turnout. Some complained that their touch screen voting machines indicated they had voted for the Mayor's re-election when they had really selected the challenger -- and no citizens reported the reverse (no votes for the Mayor were transformed into votes for the challenger). Exit polls taken on Election Day showed the Mayor losing narrowly, but after the election was over, the exit polls were changed to reflect the Mayor's alleged win.
Local media outlets claim that the re-election was the result of the voters thinking the Mayor had been the hero of the City during the bank robbery, and ignore the business connections between the Mayor's family and the robbers.
Given the fact that the Mayor's political backers were behind the notorious bank robbery, the Mayor was unable to allow a free and fair election that risked a "regime change" followed by his prosecution for his enabling of the crime.
Citizens who want the Mayor removed from office for his scandals will need to talk about the core issues surrounding the bank robbery. The Mayor's rigged re-election was partly the result of the opponents allowing the Mayor's allies to run the election and their silence about the notorious bank robbery, which was used as the excuse for the Mayor's neo-fascist policies.
Will the Mayor's opponents use the stealing of the election as an opportunity to rethink their strategy for "regime change" at the City Hall? Or will they continue to avoid serious discussion of the bank robbery scandal, which is denounced as "conspiracy theory" by the Mayor's allies? The future of the City's democracy depends on overcoming their fear to speak the truth about these crimes.
|Michael Ruppert reworks the "parable"|
from his book
"Crossing the Rubicon: The Decline of the American Empire at the End of the Age of Oil"
As I close this book and end my arguments to you I want to thank a dedicated and meticulous 9/11 researcher named Mark Robinowitz for giving me an analogy about bank robbers that I will leave you with before you begin your deliberations. I have taken his idea and reworked it for you.
I want you to imagine a city with a lot of major banks. Big banks. A city with a well-funded and competent police department. In fact it is the best-funded police department in the state. Imagine that the city has been aware of a large number of bank robberies being committed by some very vicious robbers who have no hesitation to kill. In fact, their intent is to kill as they conduct their crimes. The bank robbers have even said that this particular city is their primary target and number one enemy. Imagine also that some members of this gang had once worked for, and been trained by, that same city and were known by name. Most of their phones are tapped. Imagine that their records are available to the authorities and that the city knows where some of them live.
Imagine that the city actually has them under close surveillance and is fully aware of the gang's plans to hit several banks in the city all at once: fully aware, because the city had captured the plans years ago. The city's largest bank has even been hit by the gang once before. It was bloody, but the gang didn't get away with the loot. The city knows of new plans to take the bank from the inside by tunneling, yet does nothing to look for tunnels and places no seismic detectors to warn of digging.
The banks are not warned. Neither is the city's Department of Water and Power.
Now the city, wanting to show its concern, makes a big show of preparing to protect the increasingly alarmed citizenry, stages drills, and makes known its plans to be prepared. The city is aware of all the damage done by the gang throughout the state and has declared the gang to be its most wanted enemy. The Deputy Mayor is placed in charge of all bank robbery prevention planning. He is given command of the police force, the City Attorney's office, the utility companies and every city agency. He is charged with making sure no bank robberies occur.
Now imagine the city also scheduling a series of drills, practicing for bank robbery scenarios, that effectively take almost all available police cars off the streets and out to the city limits just as the bank robbers begin their daily raid. The drills are slated to occur during the very week when warnings of the planned bank robberies have reached their fever pitch. Imagine a series of false alarms going off at the precise moment the rampage begins -- false alarms that the gang could never have engineered.
Imagine that the city (at the direction of the Deputy Mayor) actually schedules fake bank robberies on the same day, which then lead some of the few police cars available in the wrong direction. Other police cars just stop because they don't know where to go. The Deputy Mayor then orders the last remaining police cars to drive in the wrong directions.
The bank robberies are brutal. People are shot and lying about everywhere in crumpled, violated heaps.
Supposedly all of the bank robbers are killed, but it is widely understood that they could not have acted alone. They planned these heists for years, and large numbers of the gang are still on the loose. Imagine that for three years afterwards, no one who helped the bank robbers, no one who bought them their guns, their transportation, the false IDs necessary to get access to dig their tunnels, nobody -- is brought to trial and convicted.
If you lived in that city, how long would you wait to remove the Mayor and Deputy Mayor?