The Homeland Security Command
The Northern Command, the Pentagon's new Homeland Defense Command, was first commanded by the general who was in charge of defending New York and Washington airspace on 9/11
General Ralph Eberhart, who was in charge of NORAD (air defense) on 9/11, was made the first commander of the "Northern Command," the domestic unified military command established in October 2002. If the domestic use of the U.S. military escalates into full-scale martial law, the Northern Command would essentially manage it. If 9/11 had been an "intelligence failure," it is likely that General Eberhart would have been court-martialed instead of promoted.
The creation of NORTHCOM in April 2002, constitutes a blatant violation of both Canadian and Mexican territorial sovereignty. Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld announced unilaterally that US Northern Command would have jurisdiction over the entire North American region. Canada and Mexico were presented with a fait accompli. US Northern Command's jurisdiction as outlined by the US DoD includes, in addition to the continental US, all of Canada, Mexico, as well as portions of the Caribbean, contiguous waters in the Atlantic and Pacific oceans up to 500 miles off the Mexican, US and Canadian coastlines as well as the Canadian Arctic.
The map of the US military empire
Pacific Command (Pacific and east Asia)
Southern Command (Latin America and the Carribean)
Forces Command (Atlantic)
European Command (NATO, most of Africa)
Central Command (middle east)
The Northern Command was established in 2002 to fill in the gap.
official military map of the whole world, showing zones of responsibility
Deployed in the USA: The Militarization of the Home Front
The phrase posse comitatus refers to the sheriff’s common law power to call upon the male population of a county for assistance in enforcing the laws. Enacted by Congress in 1878, the Posse Comitatus Act forbids law enforcement officials to employ the U.S. military for that purpose. 16The act consists of a single sentence: Whoever, except in cases and under circumstances expressly authorized by the Constitution or Act of Congress, willfully uses any part of the Army as a posse comitatus or otherwise to execute the laws shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than two years, or both.
... even though the act has clearly been violated any number of times since its passage, the Department of Justice has never prosecuted anyone for violating the act.
The views expressed by Gen. Eberhart, the newly appointed commander
of all U.S. armed forces within North America, are particularly troubling.
In October 2002 Eberhart became head of the new Northern Command, responsible
for homeland defense--the first time since America’s founding that
the command of all military personnel in North America has been centralized
under a single officer. 32 So long as the military confines itself to
its traditional role, the new homeland command is, in itself, no cause
for concern. But Gen. Eberhart has repeatedly contemplated a broader role
for the military. In September 2002, for example, Eberhart said, “My
view has been that Posse Comitatus will constantly be under review as
we mature this command.” 33 He did not elaborate on what that “maturation”
process will entail. ...
a powerful data-mining system called Total Information Awareness. 44 Such a system could potentially allow the government to track the routine activities of Americans, from travel plans to credit card transactions to medical records. In response to public outcry, Congress shut down the Office of Information .... Though some DARPA officials envisioned turning the system over to civilian law enforcement, it’s clear that military officials were keenly interested in the technology. In November 2002 Maj. Gen. Dale Meyerrose, chief information technology officer for NORTHCOM, said: “I’ve been to [visit] Admiral Poindexter. He and I are talking about TIA.”
In the middle of the sniper ordeal, Maryland governor Parris Glendening announced that he was considering using the National Guard to provide security at polling places on Election Day. 72 Consider the ominous image of armed soldiers surrounding American polling places. That is an image one would normally associate with a banana republic, not a free, democratic one. In the heightened threat environment of the post–September 11 world, there is a real danger that the military will be called in for any high-profile
Is the Annexation of Canada part of Bush's Military Agenda?
by Michel Chossudovsky
www.globalresearch.ca 23 November 2004
The URL of this article is: http://globalresearch.ca/articles/CHO411C.html
"Homeland Defense" and the Militarisation of America
by Frank Morales
Project Censored Update, September 2003
www.globalresearch.ca 15 September 2003
"[Nearly 70% of the military budget] is to provide men and weapons to fight in foreign countries in support of our allies and friends and for offensive operations in Third World countries .. Another big chunk of the defense budget is the 20% allocated for our offensive nuclear force of bombers, missles, and submarines whose job it is to carry nuclear weapons to the Soviet Union... Actual defense of the United States costs about 10% of the military budget and is the least expensive function performed by the Pentagon... "
Rear Admiral Gene LaRoque, U.S. Navy retired
Military Practices Procedures for Shooting Down Airliners Each Week,
By Matt Kelley Associated Press Writer
Published: Oct 2, 2003WASHINGTON (AP) - The U.S. military practices at least twice each week for the nightmare scenario of having to shoot down a civilian airliner hijacked by terrorists, the commander of forces in North America said Thursday.
Gen. Ralph E. Eberhart, head of U.S. Northern Command, said a strong set of safeguards are in place to prevent an accidental or unwarranted shootdown of a commercial airplane. Commanders, pilots and air defense crews are drilled on those procedures as many as four times each week, Eberhart said.
The rules allow for an order to shoot down a civilian plane only if there is no other option to prevent a Sept. 11-style attack on the ground, the general said. There are authentication procedures for such orders to make sure "someone can't just get on the radio and say, 'This is the president, I order you to shoot down that plane,'" Eberhart said.
Military jets were in the air during the 2001 attacks but were too far away to shoot down the planes before they struck the World Trade Center and Pentagon.
Airline passengers can be confident that their planes will not be accidentally shot down, Eberhart said.
"I would take issue with anyone who would say the men and women in our armed forces are trigger happy," Eberhart said at a breakfast meeting with reporters. "I'm more worried that they would be trigger hesitant than trigger happy. We have long discussions with people to see if they're ready to do this."
Eberhart said he has never heard of a case where a pilot or missile battery operator was hesitant to shoot down a hijacked airliner. Those involved have repeated psychological screening and testing on the procedures to make sure they will follow those rules, Eberhart said.
The Pentagon created Northern Command in the wake of the 2001 terrorist attacks to coordinate military defense of the United States and response to attacks or natural disasters.
Eberhart, a four-star general from the Air Force, said the al-Qaida terrorist network responsible for the attacks two years ago has been seriously damaged.
"Most of the varsity players are gone. In most cases we're dealing with the junior varsity team or the freshman team," Eberhart said.
"But we can't rest on our laurels. We've got to keep the throttle up ... If anything, I think we've bought ourselves some time."
The arrests of three workers at the Guantanamo Bay prison camp for terrorist suspects have illustrated a concern about terrorists trying to penetrate the U.S. military, Eberhart said. The general said he had no indications of any coordinated terrorist effort to recruit American troops but said he had no doubt such efforts were happening.
"There's no doubt that there are people out there trying to turn our people," Eberhart said. "I'm sure there are people right now being worked on as we speak, and it's not working, and they're reporting it." ^---
On the Net:
From: Mark Robinowitz
Sent: Friday, August 15, 2003 2:23 AM
Subject: [911truthalliance] f-16s scrambled in minutes after power crash
no stand down orders THIS week ...
6 Jets Launched to Patrol in the East as a Precaution
By Bradley Graham and John Mintz
Washington Post Staff Writers
Friday, August 15, 2003; Page A11
In the first minutes after yesterday's power blackout, the Pentagon
launched two Air Force F-16 fighter jets to patrol skies between New
York and Washington, and put other military aircraft on alert at
eastern U.S. bases, defense officials said.
But federal and regional authorities quickly determined that the
electrical shutdown was not caused by a terrorist act and did not
reflect a national security threat, the officials said.
The sudden paralyzing blow to a large section of the country provided
the first test of the emergency response network set up after the
Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks. Initial accounts by some of the
officials involved suggest that communications were quickly
established among key military and intelligence centers, regional
crisis centers and electric power industry executives.
Plugging into an elaborate conference call network were authorities
at the White House, the Pentagon, the CIA, the FBI, the Department of
Homeland Security and the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, in addition
to other agencies.
U.S. intelligence officials, urgently scanning the latest information
available from around the world, found no reports of heightened
threat warnings overseas.
"It was pretty clear pretty quickly that the blackout was a power
plant problem," said one military official who was in the Pentagon's
operations center during the initial phase of the power outage.
While terrorism was ruled out, the Pentagon bolstered the country's
air defenses as a precaution. The scrambling of the fighter jets
recalled the constant combat air patrol missions that were initiated
over major U.S. cities after the Sept. 11 attacks. Those flights gave
way last year to occasional, random patrols, but with contingency
plans by the North American Aerospace Defense command (NORAD) to
resume more intense coverage if necessary.
"NORAD has no reason to believe there's an imminent airborne threat,"
a defense official said. But, he added, the decision was made to send
the extra fighters aloft and put others on alert "as a precautionary
measure." The planes took off from Andrews Air Force Base.
Said another military official: "We could have had more fighters
airborne in five minutes."
Defense officials braced for the possibility that New York and other
major cities left without power might request federal troops to
maintain order and back up local police. Officials also prepared for
possible appeals for generators, cots, medical equipment or other
emergency assistance. But by last night, no such requests had come.
"We're closely monitoring the situation," said Michael Perini,
spokesman for Northern Command, another post-9/11 creation, this one
established to coordinate the military's response to domestic
emergencies. "We're anticipating where we feel the military can help,
from communications to medical services to setting up places where
people could sleep."
"This is the first major incident to affect a part of the nation's
critical infrastructure since the launch [in March] of the Department
of Homeland Security, and we are responding," said Brian Roehrkasse,
a department spokesman. "We're communicating with and working closely
with the industry sector involved, which is how things are supposed
Within moments of the start of the blackout, the department's command
center at its headquarters in Northwest Washington contacted
Consolidated Edison Inc. and other key electrical grid industry
officials, using prearranged communications plans. "We immediately
started receiving information from them in real time," he said.
Within minutes, Homeland Security officials were notifying other
government agencies that the problem likely stemmed from an
electrical overload rather than an act of sabotage.
Homeland Security -- which now incorporates the Federal Emergency
Management Agency -- also stood by with crisis teams, medical units
and aircraft. But "no states have asked for any federal assistance,"
Roehrkasse said. "Backup generators are working, and states and
localities are dealing with it."
Staff writer Dana Priest contributed to this report.
(c) 2003 The Washington Post Company
March 22, 2002
Pentagon juggles politics of creating North American command
By Sydney J. Freedberg Jr., National Journal
As it knits together a new command for the defense of North America, the Pentagon
is having to unravel a tangle of special interests, ranging from Canada and
Congress to the Coast Guard and the Governors. No wonder it's taking so long.
For 50 years, the Pentagon has divided the world among a handful of four-star officers: the regional commanders in chief, whose influence in their areas of the globe has grown so great that The Washington Post, in a series of articles a year before Sept. 11, likened them to the proconsuls of the Roman Empire. But throughout those 50 years, no "CINC"--as they are always called in the Pentagon--has had authority over Canada, Mexico, or the continental United States itself.
That is about to change. On September 11, the United States itself became the battleground. So, although recent leaks show that the details are still being worked out, the Defense Department has resolved to establish a new "Northern Command."
The secret to the success of the existing U.S. regional CINCs has been as much about adapting to local conditions as about imposing a common model. Even Rome's theoretically autocratic proconsuls had to tread carefully around local sensibilities, and their U.S. heirs are little different. ....
History is littered with defeated forces that never quite cleared up who was in charge. On December 7, 1941, Japanese raiders caught U.S. forces off guard in large part because the separate commanders for the Army and Navy in Hawaii failed to coordinate their activities.
[actually, President Roosevelt knew the attacks were coming and kept the commanders in Hawaii out of the loop of the intercepts of Japanese radio traffic, since FDR needed the attacks in order to galvanize a divided nation to support entry into the war]
After the war, the Pentagon established "unified commands" precisely
to end such confusion. Under that system, one officer controls all forces in
a given geographic region, such as the Pacific, or in a given functional area,
such as long-range transportation. But 60 years after Pearl Harbor, the defense
of the continental United States is divided among no fewer than five different
four-star officers and six organizations.
Most prominent of the organizations is the Joint Forces Command. For two years, it has operated the military's standing Joint Task Force for Civil Support--beefed up since 9/11--that assists civilian authorities in the event of a terrorist attack. Its Norfolk, Va., headquarters is close enough to Washington to make it easy for its commander and staff to come to the Pentagon for policy meetings, yet is far enough out of the potential blast zone to ensure its safety if the worst were to occur in the capital. Location and capabilities make "JFCOM" the likely core of a future Northern Command. But other nodes of Pentagon power would also have to be pulled into the new command.
The U.S. Space Command in Colorado, for instance, would have to be in the mix. Its chief is responsible for protecting stateside computer systems. That same officer defends U.S. and Canadian airspace, in his other role as commander in chief of the North American Aerospace Defense Command, or NORAD. But it's the CINC of Joint Forces Command who is responsible for defending land and sea. Except where he isn't: The commander in chief for the Pacific, who protects Hawaii and Alaska, also hunts drug smugglers off the West Coast; the Southern Command CINC in Florida does the same along the Gulf Coast and in the Caribbean; and both of those commanders share their responsibility with the U.S. Coast Guard, which is not even part of the Defense Department, and whose commandant sits in Washington, D.C.
... on the morning of September 11, when the alarms went off in the Cheyenne Mountain, Colo., command post of NORAD, the senior officer on duty was not the U.S. chief, but his executive officer, Maj. Gen. Eric Findley--a Canadian. .... since Sept. 11, the Canadians have invited the United States even deeper into their country.
The centerpiece of this continental collaboration is NORAD. Deep under Cheyenne
Mountain, U.S. and Canadian officers literally sit side by side in North America's
most secure command post. Their screens display data from U.S. and Canadian
radars, and their radios dispatch U.S. and Canadian fighter aircraft, all but
interchangeably. By treaty, NORAD's commander is always a U.S. officer reporting
directly to the President, and the deputy commander is always a Canadian officer
reporting directly to the prime minister.
But NORAD also shows the limits of collaboration. It actually originated as a form of "defense against help." In the 1950s, it became clear that U.S. forces would need to intercept any incoming Soviet bombers as far from the United States as possible--sovereign airspace be damned. Canadians decided that only a joint headquarters would guarantee them a say in the air war that might rage over their heads.
For the past few years, Canadian nervousness about a proposed U.S. national missile defense, which would probably have its nerve center at the Cheyenne Mountain command post, has prompted speculation that Ottawa would pull out altogether. Fortunately, NORAD is still standing. But throughout its history, noted Joseph Jockel, director of Canadian studies at St. Lawrence University, the binational command has had "emergency procedures for the United States to act alone and for Canada to stand down." In the event of a disagreement, all of those Canadians in Cheyenne Mountain can be replaced with U.S. personnel.
Mission Creep Hits Home
By William M. Arkin
Los Angeles Times
Sunday 23 November 2003
American armed forces are assuming major new domestic policing and surveillance
Preoccupied with the war in Iraq and still traumatized by Sept. 11, 2001, the American public has paid little attention to some of what is being done inside the United States in the name of anti-terrorism. Under the banner of "homeland security," the military and intelligence communities are implementing far-reaching changes that blur the lines between terrorism and other kinds of crises and will break down long-established barriers to military action and surveillance within the U.S.
"We must start thinking differently," says Air Force Gen. Ralph E. "Ed" Eberhart, the newly installed commander of Northern Command, the military's homeland security arm. Before 9/11, he says, the military and intelligence systems were focused on "the away game" and not properly focused on "the home game." "Home," of course, is the United States.
Eberhart's Colorado-based command is charged with enhancing homeland security in two ways: by improving the military's capability to defend the country's borders, coasts and airspace -- unquestionably within the military's long-established mission -- and by providing "military assistance to civil authorities" when authorized by the secretary of Defense or the president.
That too may sound unexceptionable: The military has long had mechanisms to respond to a request for help from state governors. New after 9/11 are more aggressive preparations and the presumption that local government will not be able to carry the new homeland security load. Being the military, moreover, contingency planners approach preparing by assuming the worst. All of this is a major -- and potentially dangerous -- departure from past policy.
The U.S. military operates under the 1878 Posse Comitatus Act, which prohibits the direct use of federal troops "to execute the laws" of the United States. The courts have interpreted this to mean that the military is prohibited from any active role in direct civilian law enforcement, such as search, seizure or arrest of civilians.
"There are abundant reasons for rejecting the further expansion of the military's domestic role," says Mackubin T. Owens, a professor of strategy and force planning at the Naval War College. Looking at the issue historically, Owens wrote in an August 2002 essay in the National Review's online edition that "the use of soldiers as a posse [places] them in the uncomfortable position of taking orders from local authorities who had an interest in the disputes that provoked the unrest in the first place." Moreover, Owens said, becoming more involved in domestic policing can be "subtle and subversive … like a lymphoma or termite infestation." Though we are far from having "tanks rumbling through the streets," he said, the potential long-term effect of an increasing military role in police and law enforcement activities is "a military contemptuous of American society and unresponsive to civilian authorities."
Eberhart says his Northern Command operates scrupulously within the bounds of the law. "We believe the [Posse Comitatus] Act, as amended, provides the authority we need to do our job, and no modification is needed at this time," he told the House Armed Services Committee in March.
Of course, what he knows is that amendments approved by Congress in 1996 for that earlier civilian war, the war on drugs, have already expanded the military's domestic powers so that Washington can act unilaterally in dispatching the military without waiting for a state's request for help. Long before 9/11, Congress authorized the military to assist local law enforcement officials in domestic "drug interdiction" and during terrorist incidents involving weapons of mass destruction. Furthermore, the president, after proclaiming a state of emergency, can authorize additional actions.
Indeed, the military is presently operating under just such an emergency declaration. Eberhart's command has defined three levels of operations, each of which triggers a larger set of authorized activities. The levels are "extraordinary," "emergency" and "temporary." At the "temporary" level, which covers such things as the Olympic Games or the Super Bowl, limited assistance can be provided to law enforcement agencies when a governor requests it, primarily in such areas as logistics, transportation and communications. During "emergencies," the military can provide similar support, mostly in response to specific events such as the attacks on the World Trade Center.
It is only in the case of "extraordinary" domestic operations that the unique capabilities of the Defense Department are deployed. These include not just such things as air patrols to shoot down hijacked planes or the defusing of bombs and other explosives, , but also bringing in intelligence collectors, special operators and even full combat troops.
Given the absence of terrorist attacks inside the United States since 9/11, it may seem surprising that Northern Command is already working under the far-reaching authority that goes with "extraordinary operations." But it is.
"We are not going to be out there spying on people," Eberhart told PBS' NewsHour in September. But, he said, "We get information from people who do." Some of that information increasingly comes not from the FBI or those charged with civilian law enforcement but from a Pentagon organization established last year, the Counterintelligence Field Activity (CIFA). The seemingly innocuous CIFA was originally given the mission of protecting the Defense Department and its personnel, as well as "critical infrastructure," against espionage conducted by terrorists and foreign intelligence services.
But in August, Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld expanded CIFA's mission, charging it with maintaining "a domestic law enforcement database that includes information related to potential terrorist threats directed against the Department of Defense." The group's Assessments and Technology Directorate, which shares offices with the Justice Department's Foreign Terrorist Tracking Task Force, has already identified 200 foreign terrorist suspects in the U.S., according to a Defense Department report to Congress.
This year, the Pentagon inspector general authorized assigning military special agents to 56 FBI Joint Terrorism Task Force operations at FBI field offices. These military agents will pursue leads in local communities of potential threats to the military. Eberhart also plans to have his own cadre of agents working with local law enforcement. Next year, he plans to transform Joint Task Force Six, a drug interdiction unit of 160 military personnel at Ft. Bliss, Texas, into Joint Interagency Task Force North. The new task force will be given nationwide responsibility for working with law enforcement agencies.
CIFA, moreover, has been given a domestic "data mining" mission: figuring out a way to process massive sets of public records, intercepted communications, credit card accounts, etc., to find "actionable intelligence." "Homeland defense relies on the sharing of actionable intelligence among the appropriate federal, state, and local agencies," says Lt. Gen. Edward G. Anderson III, Eberhart's deputy.
Another ambitious domestic project is being undertaken by the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency, which is gathering "geospatial information" about 133 cities, the borders and seaports. This "urban data inventory" combines unclassified and classified data (including such things as the location of emergency services, communications, transportation and food supplies) with a high-resolution satellite map of the United States. When the mapping efforts are completed, a national "spatial data infrastructure" will be created down to the house level. Intelligence analysts speak of one day being able to identify individual occupants, as well as their national background and political affiliations. Though the military is just getting its systems in place, there can be no other conclusion: Domestic surveillance is back.
It's not that we're heading toward martial law. We're not. But outside the view of most of the public, the government is daily expanding military operations into areas of local government and law enforcement that historically have been off-limits. And it doesn't seem far-fetched to imagine that those charged with assembling "actionable intelligence" will slowly start combining databases of known terrorists with seemingly innocuous lists of contributors to charities or causes, that membership lists for activist organizations will be folded in, that names and personal data of anti-globalization protesters will be run through the "data mine." After all, the mission of Northern Command and other Pentagon agencies is to identify groups and individuals who could potentially pose threats to Defense Department and civilian installations.
Given all this, it might be a good time for state and local governments to ask themselves whether the federal government, through the military, is slowly eroding their power to manage what -- for very good reasons -- have always been considered local responsibilities.
William M. Arkin is a military affairs analyst who writes regularly for The Los Angeles Times Opinion.
November 21, 2003
It's really scary listening to Bush's invasion general and war criminal, Tommy Franks, predict the future. According to Franks, the Constitution is doomed and a military dictatorship is all but inevitable in the United States. In the December  issue of Cigar Aficionado (!), Franks says if terrorists use WMD in America, "the Western world, the free world, loses what it cherishes most, and that is freedom and liberty we've seen for a couple of hundred years in this grand experiment that we call democracy."
According to Franks, the people themselves would demand the Constitution be revoked after such an event. "It means the potential of a weapon of mass destruction and a terrorist, massive, casualty-producing event somewhere in the Western world -- it may be in the United States of America -- that causes our population to question our own Constitution and to begin to militarize our country in order to avoid a repeat of another mass, casualty-producing event. Which in fact, then begins to unravel the fabric of our Constitution. Two steps, very, very important."
The way the rightwing nut jobs over at NewsMax phrased it, trashing the Constitution and the Bill of Rights is not so much a matter of IF, but WHEN. "Franks didn't speculate about how soon such an event might take place," NewsMax wrote. "Already, critics of the U.S. Patriot Act, rushed through Congress in the wake of the Sept. 11 attacks, have argued that the law aims to curtail civil liberties and sets a dangerous precedent... But Franks' scenario goes much further. He is the first high-ranking official to openly speculate that the Constitution could be scrapped in favor of a military form of government."
Well, maybe not the first, since Dubya himself has used the "D" word on several occasions. "You don't get everything you want," Bush told Governing Magazine back in 1998 when he was gov of Texas. "A dictatorship would be a lot easier."
"If this were a dictatorship, it would be a heck of a lot easier, just so long as I'm the dictator," Bush told CNN in December, 2000.
"A dictatorship would be a heck of a lot easier, there's no question about it, " the appointed one told Business Week on July 30, 2001.
I know, he was just kidding... or was he?
Centre for Research on Globalisation
Centre de recherche sur la mondialisation
"Franks’ scenario goes much further. He is the first high-ranking official to openly speculate that the Constitution could be scrapped in favor of a military form of government."
General Tommy Franks calls for Repeal of US Constitution
www.globalresearch.ca 23 November 2003
The URL of this article is: http://globalresearch.ca/articles/EDW311A.html
Commentary on General Franks' Statement
The Criminalization of the State
by Michel Chossudovsky
23 November 2003
In the wake of the Iraq war, 18 Iraqis and 2 Jordanians introduced a class action law suit in a Brussels Court against General Franks, Commander of the US Armed Forces in Iraq.
Based on the law of “universal jurisdiction”, characteristic of Belgian law concerning genocide and war crimes, General Franks was identified:
"for ordering war crimes and for not preventing others from committing them or for providing protection to the perpetrators."
The law suit does not solely implicate General Franks, who was obeying orders from higher up: Under the war agenda, high ranking officials of the Bush administration, members of the military, the US Congress and the Judiciary have been granted the authority not only to commit criminal acts, but also to designate those opposed to these criminal acts as "enemies of the State."
In other words, the "Criminalization of the State", is when war criminals legitimately occupy positions of authority, which enable them to decide "who are the criminals", when in fact they are criminals.
Franks' statement no doubt reflects a consensus within the Military as to how events ought to unfold. It is clear in his mind that the "war on terrorism" provides a justification for repealing the Rule of Law, ultimately with a view to preserving civil liberties.
Franks' interview suggests that an Al Qaeda sponsored terrorist attack will be used as a "trigger mechanism" for a military coup d'état in America. Franks is alluding to a so-called "Pearl Harbor type event" which would be used as a justification for declaring a State of emergency, leading to the establishment of a military government.
In many regards, the militarisation of civilian State institutions is already functional under the facade of a bogus democracy.
General Franks has nonetheless identified with cynical accuracy the precise scenario whereby military rule will be established:
"a terrorist, massive, casualty-producing event [will occur] somewhere in the Western world – it may be in the United States of America – that causes our population to question our own Constitution and to begin to militarize our country in order to avoid a repeat of another mass, casualty-producing event."
This statement from an individual who was actively involved in military and intelligence planning at the highest levels, suggests that the "militarisation of our country" is an ongoing operational assumption. It is part of the broader "Washington consensus". It identifies the Bush administration's "roadmap" of war and Homeland Defense. Needless to say, it is also an integral part of the neoliberal agenda.
The "terrorist massive casualty-producing event" is presented by General Franks as a crucial political turning point. The resulting crisis and social turmoil are intended to facilitate a major shift in US political, social and institutional structures.
In the words of David Rockefeller:
"We are on the verge of global transformation. All we need is the right major crisis and the nations will accept the New World Order."
A similar statement was made by Zbigniew Brzezinski in the Grand Chessboard:
"As America becomes an increasingly multicultural society, it may find it more difficult to fashion a consensus on foreign policy issues, except in the circumstances of a truly massive and widely perceived direct external threat."
The NeoCons' Project for the New American Century (PNAC), published in September 2000, barely two months before the presidential elections, called for:
"some catastrophic and catalyzing event, like a new Pearl Harbor." (See http://www.globalresearch.ca/articles/NAC304A.html )
What is terrifying in General Franks' statement is that it accurately reflects official US foreign policy. It comes from a man who obeys orders emanating from the military command structure.
In other words, his statement accurately reveals the Pentagon's frame of mind. Moreover, it comes from a military man who speaks with a profound sense of conviction, who firmly believes in the righteousness of war as a means to safeguarding democratic values.
In other words, the military actors and politicians are totally blinded by the "war on terrorism" dogma. Truth is falsehood and falsehood is truth. Realities are turned upside down. Acts of war are heralded as "humanitarian interventions" geared towards upholding democracy. Military occupation and the killing of civilians are presented as "peace-keeping operations." The repeal of democracy is portrayed by General Franks as a means to providing "domestic security" and upholding civil liberties.
Needless to say: any attempt by antiwar critics to reveal these "inconsistencies" or "unanswered questions" would --under General Frank's scenario-- be defined as a "criminal act". In other words, those who are investigating "the war on terrorism" and the military, political and economic actors behind the New World Order, with a view to establishing the truth, are categorized as "enemies of the State", and consequently as criminals:
"The 'war on terrorism' is the cover for the war on dissent."
("Homeland Defense" and the Militarisation of America by Frank Morales,http://www.globalresearch.ca/articles/MOR309A.html , September 2003)
For further details on the war crimes law suit against General Frank, see:
Court case against General Franks in Brussels: No impunity for war crimes committed by U.S. troops in Iraq:
The Genocide and War Crimes Case against General Tommy Franks in Brussels:
The Centre for Research on Globalization (CRG) at www.globalresearch.ca grants
permission to post the above mentioned article in its entirety, or any portions
thereof, so long as the URL and source are indicated, a copyright note is displayed.
Michel Chossudovsky is the author of War and Globalization, the Truth behind
September 11 , Global Outlook, Shanty Bay, Ont., 2003. For details click: http://globalresearch.ca/globaloutlook/truth911.html
Kindly help to circulate the following article to as many interested people as possible.
Gen. Franks Doubts Constitution Will Survive WMD Attack
by John O. Edwards
NewsMax.com 21 November 2003
www.globalresearch.ca 23 November 2003
Gen. Tommy Franks says that if the United States is hit with a weapon of mass destruction that inflicts large casualties, the Constitution will likely be discarded in favor of a military form of government. Franks, who successfully led the U.S. military operation to liberate Iraq, expressed his worries in an extensive interview he gave to the men’s lifestyle magazine Cigar Aficionado.
In the magazine’s December edition, the former commander of the military’s Central Command warned that if terrorists succeeded in using a weapon of mass destruction (WMD) against the U.S. or one of our allies, it would likely have catastrophic consequences for our cherished republican form of government.
Discussing the hypothetical dangers posed to the U.S. in the wake of Sept. 11, Franks said that “the worst thing that could happen” is if terrorists acquire and then use a biological, chemical or nuclear weapon that inflicts heavy casualties.
If that happens, Franks said, “... the Western world, the free world, loses what it cherishes most, and that is freedom and liberty we’ve seen for a couple of hundred years in this grand experiment that we call democracy.”
Franks then offered “in a practical sense” what he thinks would happen in the aftermath of such an attack.
“It means the potential of a weapon of mass destruction and a terrorist, massive, casualty-producing event somewhere in the Western world – it may be in the United States of America – that causes our population to question our own Constitution and to begin to militarize our country in order to avoid a repeat of another mass, casualty-producing event. Which in fact, then begins to unravel the fabric of our Constitution. Two steps, very, very important.”
Franks didn’t speculate about how soon such an event might take place.
Already, critics of the U.S. Patriot Act, rushed through Congress in the wake of the Sept. 11 attacks, have argued that the law aims to curtail civil liberties and sets a dangerous precedent.
But Franks’ scenario goes much further. He is the first high-ranking official to openly speculate that the Constitution could be scrapped in favor of a military form of government.
The usually camera-shy Franks retired from U.S. Central Command, known in Pentagon lingo as CentCom, in August 2003, after serving nearly four decades in the Army.
Franks earned three Purple Hearts for combat wounds and three Bronze Stars for valor. Known as a “soldier’s general,” Franks made his mark as a top commander during the U.S.’s successful Operation Desert Storm, which liberated Kuwait in 1991. He was in charge of CentCom when Osama bin Laden’s al-Qaeda attacked the United States on Sept. 11.
Franks said that within hours of the attacks, he was given orders to prepare to root out the Taliban in Afghanistan and to capture bin Laden.
Franks offered his assessment on a number of topics to Cigar Aficionado, including:
President Bush: “As I look at President Bush, I think he will ultimately be judged as a man of extremely high character. A very thoughtful man, not having been appraised properly by those who would say he’s not very smart. I find the contrary. I think he’s very, very bright. And I suspect that he’ll be judged as a man who led this country through a crease in history effectively. Probably we’ll think of him in years to come as an American hero.”
On the motivation for the Iraq war: Contrary to claims that top Pentagon brass opposed the invasion of Iraq, Franks said he wholeheartedly agreed with the president’s decision to invade Iraq and oust Saddam Hussein.
“I, for one, begin with intent. ... There is no question that Saddam Hussein had intent to do harm to the Western alliance and to the United States of America. That intent is confirmed in a great many of his speeches, his commentary, the words that have come out of the Iraqi regime over the last dozen or so years. So we have intent.
“If we know for sure ... that a regime has intent to do harm to this country, and if we have something beyond a reasonable doubt that this particular regime may have the wherewithal with which to execute the intent, what are our actions and orders as leaders in this country?”
The Pentagon’s deck of cards: Asked how the Pentagon decided to put its most-wanted Iraqis on a set of playing cards, Franks explained its genesis. He recalled that when his staff identified the most notorious Iraqis the U.S. wanted to capture, “it just turned out that the number happened to be about the same as a deck of cards. And so somebody said, ‘Aha, this will be the ace of spades.’”
Capturing Saddam: Franks said he was not surprised that Saddam has not been captured or killed. But he says he will eventually be found, perhaps sooner than Osama bin laden.
“The capture or killing of Saddam Hussein will be a near term thing. And I won’t say that’ll be within 19 or 43 days. ... I believe it is inevitable.”
Franks ended his interview with a less-than-optimistic note.
“It’s not in the history of civilization for peace ever to reign. Never has in the history of man. ... I doubt that we’ll ever have a time when the world will actually be at peace.”
© Copyright NewsMax 2003 For fair use only/ pour usage équitable seulement.
The war on terror and American democracy
some ominous warnings
By Patrick Martin
27 November 2003
Three commentaries published recently in the US media, all by
well-connected observers of the US military, have suggested that a major new
terrorist attack within the United States could disrupt the 2004 elections and
even result in military intervention on the streets of America as well as the
suspension of the Constitution.
On Friday, November 21, the right-wing web news service Newsmax.com published an account of the interview given by General Tommy Franks to the lifestyle magazine Cigar Aficionado.
Franks said that a terrorist attack employing a weapon of mass destruction and causing mass casualties, either in the United States or against an ally, would likely result in replacing the American Constitution with a military government.
As the commander of CentCom, Franks led US forces in the conquest of Afghanistan in 2001 and the invasion of Iraq earlier this year, before retiring during the summer. In his magazine interview, he outlined this scenario:
It means the potential of a weapon of mass destruction and a terrorist, massive, casualty-producing event somewhere in the Western world - it may be in the United States of America - that causes our population to question our own Constitution and to begin to militarize our country in order to avoid a repeat of another mass, casualty-producing event. Which in fact, then begins to unravel the fabric of our Constitution. Two steps, very, very important.
Franks remains a fervent supporter of the Bush administration,
describing Bush as a very thoughtful man, and declaring, Probably well think
of him in years to come as an American hero.
But according to Franks, it may be under the administration of this hero that the Western world, the free world, loses what it cherishes most, and that is freedom and liberty weve seen for a couple of hundred years in this grand experiment that we call democracy.
The retired general placed the responsibility for this possible turn to dictatorship on our population, and was silent on what role the military leadership or the Bush administration would play in its establishment. The American media has apparently failed to ask him anything about it since.
Terrorism and the 2004 election
The same theme was touched on in the Outlook section of the Washington
Post, the main daily newspaper in the US capital, in a column published Sunday,
November 23, under the headlineTerrorist Logic: Disrupt the 2004 Election.
The author was David J. Rothkopf, a former Clinton administration official now at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, a major Washington think tank.
Rothkopf outlines the possibility of a terrorist campaign of suicide bombings during next falls election campaign that leads to a full-scale military mobilization. History suggests that striking during major elections is an effective tool for terrorist groups, he writes.
As a representative of the Democratic wing of the ruling elite, Rothkopf is clearly concerned that such an event would profit the Bush administration. He cites examples such as the Israeli elections in 1996, when suicide bombings contributed to the victory of right-wing Likud candidate Binyamin Netanyahu, and the 2000 Russian elections, won by Vladimir Putin after a series of bombings in Moscow and other cities attributed to Chechen terrorists but widely believed to have been carried out or at least permitted by Putin's KGB.
Rothkopf notes the politically symbiotic relationship between the terrorists and the hard-liners: Hard-liners strike back more broadly, making it easier for terrorists as they attempt to justify their causes and their methods. He could have added that the terrorists are a godsend for the hard-liners, providing a pretext for dictatorial methods.
More important than his argumentessentially restating the Democratic appeal for a more coordinated international approach to terrorism is what Rothkopf reveals about the expectations in official Washington and corporate America. At one point he notes:
Recently, I co-chaired a meeting hosted by CNBC of more than 200 senior business and government executives, many of whom are specialists in security and terrorism related issues. Almost three-quarters of them said it was likely the United States would see a major terrorist strike before the end of 2004. A similar number predicted that the assault would be greater than those of 9/11 and might well involve weapons of mass destruction. It was the sense of the group that such an attack was likely to generate additional support for President Bush.
This is a remarkable assertion. Rothkopf describes this elite audience as serious people, not prone to hysteria or panicmilitary officers, policymakers, scientists, researchers and others who have studied such issues for a long time. The vast majority of them, he says, believe that a terrorist attack worse than September 11that is, killing thousands or even tens of thousands of Americanswill take place in the course of the 2004 election campaign, and that this attack will benefit the political fortunes of George W. Bush.
Military action inside the US
The role of the military in domestic policing was the subject
of a column published November 23, written by William Arkin, a well-connected
military analyst for the Los Angeles Times.
It was Arkin who last year revealed the Bush administrations decision to revise US military strategy to target seven countries - Iraq, Iran, North Korea, Libya, Syria, China and Russia - for possible nuclear attack.
The column was headlined, Mission Creep Hits Home, American armed forces are assuming major new domestic policing and surveillance roles. It examines the role of the Pentagons Northern Command, the newly established center for controlling all US armed forces within the continental US, Canada and Alaska, and includes an interview with its commander, Air Force General Ralph E. Eberhart.
According to Arkin, the Northern Command has defined three categories of operations, with increasing levels of activity: temporary, emergency and extraordinary. He writes: It is only in the case of extraordinary domestic operations that the unique capabilities of the Defense Department are deployed. These include not just such things as air patrols to shoot down hijacked planes or the defusing of bombs and other explosives, but also bringing in intelligence collectors, special operators and even full combat troops.
Arkin reveals that the Northern Command is already working under the far-reaching authority that goes with extraordinary operations. This includes the activation of a series of intelligence-gathering operations directed against the American people. These include:
* A decision by Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld to expand the mission of the Counterintelligence Field Activity (CIFA), established last year to protect critical infrastructure, authorizing it to maintain a domestic law enforcement database that includes information related to potential terrorist threats directed against the Department of Defense.
* The assigning of military special agents to 56 FBI Joint Terrorism Task Force operations at FBI field offices, investigating potential threats to the military in local communities inside the United States.
* The decision by Eberhart to transform Joint Task Force Six, a drug-enforcement unit of 160 soldiers at Ft. Bliss, Texas, into a counterterrorism force called Interagency Task Force North. Congress originally authorized joint Task Force Six in 1996, in the first exception to the Posse Comitatus Law, which bars the US military from assuming domestic police functions.
* The National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency, another little-known body, is gathering an urban data inventory combining unclassified and classified data on 133 cities, as well as US border crossings and seaports, to create a national spatial data infrastructure. This information, which Arkin describes as down to the house level, could be used either for surveillance or military targeting.
According to Arkin, the CIFA has been given a domestic data mining mission as well: figuring out a way to process massive sets of public records, intercepted communications, credit card accounts, etc., to find actionable intelligence. This amounts to reviving in another form the Total Information Awareness program, headed by Admiral John Poindexter of Iran-Contra fame, which was supposedly shut down earlier this year by Congress after a public outcry.
Arkin concludes: Outside the view of most of the public, the government is daily expanding military operations into areas of local government and law enforcement that historically have been off-limits. And it doesnt seem far-fetched to imagine that those charged with assembling actionable intelligence will slowly start combining databases of known terrorists with seemingly innocuous lists of contributors to charities or causes, that membership lists for activist organizations will be folded in, that names and personal data of anti-globalization protesters will be run through the data mine. After all, the mission of Northern Command and other Pentagon agencies is to identify groups and individuals who could potentially pose threats to Defense Department and civilian installations.
Here, then, is a glimpse of the real state of affairs in the United States on the eve of the 2004 election year. Ruling circles widely anticipate a massive terrorist strike that would boost the flagging political standing of the Bush administration or even lead to a suspension of the elections and the establishment of military rule. The US military is actively preparing for this possibility by readying troops for use in domestic policing and by assembling a database of likely political opponents.
The obvious question is: given the expected consequences, is it not in the political interests of the Bush administration or sections of the military/intelligence apparatus to engineer such a terrorist attack? Or at least to insure that it takes place, by looking the other way, on the model of September 11?
January 23, 2005 - New York Times
Commandos Get Duty on U.S. Soil
By ERIC SCHMITT
WASHINGTON, Jan. 22 - Somewhere in the shadows of the White House and the Capitol this week, a small group of super-secret commandos stood ready with state-of-the-art weaponry to swing into action to protect the presidency, a task that has never been fully revealed before.
As part of the extraordinary army of 13,000 troops, police officers and federal agents marshaled to secure the inauguration, these elite forces were poised to act under a 1997 program that was updated and enhanced after the Sept. 11 attacks, but nonetheless departs from how the military has historically been used on American soil.
These commandos, operating under a secret counterterrorism program code-named Power Geyser, were mentioned publicly for the first time this week on a Web site for a new book, "Code Names: Deciphering U.S. Military Plans, Programs and Operation in the 9/11 World," (Steerforth Press). The book was written by William M. Arkin, a former intelligence analyst for the Army.
The precise number of these Special Operations forces in Washington this week is highly classified, but military officials say the number is very small. The special-missions units belong to the Joint Special Operations Command, a secretive command based at Fort Bragg, N.C., whose elements include the Army unit Delta Force.
In the past, the command has also provided support to domestic law enforcement agencies during high-risk events like the Olympics and political party conventions, according to the Web site of GlobalSecurity.org, a research organization in Alexandria, Va.
The role of the armed forces in the United States has been a contentious issue for more than a century. The Posse Comitatus Act of 1878, which restricts military forces from performing domestic law enforcement duties, like policing, was enacted after the Civil War in response to the perceived misuse of federal troops who were policing in the South.
Over the years, the law has been amended to allow the military to lend equipment to federal, state and local authorities; assist federal agencies in drug interdiction; protect national parks; and execute quarantine and certain health laws. About 5,000 federal troops supported civilian agencies at the Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City three years ago.
Since Sept. 11, however, military and law enforcement agencies have worked much more closely not only to help detect and defeat any possible attack, including from unconventional weapons, but also to assure the continuity of the federal government in case of cataclysmic disaster.
The commandos here this week were the same type of Special Operations forces who are hunting top insurgents in Iraq and Osama bin Laden in the mountainous wilds of Afghanistan and Pakistan. But under the top-secret military plan, they are also conducting counterterrorism missions in support of civilian agencies in the United States.
"They bring unique military and technical capabilities that often are centered around potential W.M.D. events," said a senior military official who has been briefed on the units' operations.
A civil liberties advocate who was told about the program by a reporter said that he had no objections to the program as described to him because its scope appeared to be limited to supporting the counterterrorism efforts of civilian authorities.
Mr. Arkin, in the online supplement to his book (codenames.org/documents.html), says the contingency plan, called JCS Conplan 0300-97, calls for "special-mission units in extra-legal missions to combat terrorism in the United States" based on top-secret orders that are managed by the military's Joint Staff and coordinated with the military's Special Operations Command and Northern Command, which is the lead military headquarters for domestic defense.
Mr. Arkin provided The New York Times with briefing slides prepared by the Northern Command, detailing the plan and outlining the military's preparations for the inauguration.
Three senior Defense Department and Bush administration officials confirmed the existence of the plan and mission, but disputed Mr. Arkin's characterization of the mission as "extra-legal."
One of the officials said the units operated in the United States under "special authority" from either the president or the secretary of defense.
Civilian and uniformed military lawyers said provisions in several federal statutes, including the Fiscal Year 2000 Defense Department Authorization Act, Public Law 106-65, permits the secretary of defense to authorize military forces to support civilian agencies, including the Federal Bureau of Investigation, in the event of a national emergency, especially any involving nuclear, chemical or biological weapons.
In 1998, the Pentagon's top policy official, Walter B. Slocombe, acknowledged that the military had covert-action teams.
"We have designated special-mission units that are specifically manned, equipped and trained to deal with a wide variety of transnational threats," Mr. Slocombe told the Senate Armed Services Committee. "These units, assigned to or under the operational control of the U.S. Special Operations Command, are focused primarily on those special operations and supporting functions that combat terrorism and actively counter terrorist use of W.M.D. These units are on alert every day of the year and have worked extensively with their interagency counterparts."
Spokesmen for the Northern Command in Colorado Springs and the Special Operations Command in Tampa, Fla., the parent organization of the Joint Special Operations Command, declined to comment on the plan, the units involved and the mission.
"At any given time, there are a number of classified programs across the government that, for national security reasons, it would be inappropriate to discuss," said Bryan Whitman, a Pentagon spokesman. "It would be irresponsible for me to comment on any classified program that may or may not exist."
But the Northern Command document that mentions Power Geyser is marked "unclassified." The document states that the purpose of the Department of Defense's contingency planning for the inauguration is to provide "unity of D.O.D. effort to contribute to a safe and secure environment for the 2005 inauguration."
The Northern Command missions include deterring an attack or mitigating its consequences, and coordinating with the Special Operations Command.
In a telephone interview from his home in Vermont, Mr. Arkin said the military's reaction to the disclosure of the counterterrorism plan and its operating units reflected "the silliness of calling something that's obvious, classified."
"I'm not revealing what they're doing or the methods of their contingency planning," he said. "I don't compromise any sensitive intelligence operations by revealing sources and methods. I don't reveal ongoing operations in specific locales."
Mr. Arkin's book is a glossary of more than 3,000 code names of past and present operations, programs and weapons systems, with brief descriptions of each. Most involved secret activities, and details of many of the programs could not be immediately confirmed.
The book also describes American military operations and assistance programs in scores of countries, from Afghanistan to Zimbabwe. The murky world of "special access programs" and other secret military and intelligence activities is covered in the book, too. Some code names describe highly classified research programs, like Thirsty Saber, a program that in the 1990's tried to develop a sensor to replace human reasoning. Others describe military installations in foreign countries, like Poker Bluff I, an electronic-eavesdropping collection station in Honduras in the 1980's.
Many involve activities related to the survival of the president and constitutional government. The book, for instance, describes Site R, one of the undisclosed locations used by Vice President Dick Cheney since the Sept. 11 attacks.
Site R is a granite mountain shelter just north of Sabillasville, Md., near the Pennsylvania border. It was built in the early 1950's to withstand a Soviet nuclear attack.
The book also describes a program called Treetop, the presidential emergency successor support plan, which provides survivors of a nuclear strike or other attack with war plans, regulations and procedures to establish teams of military and civilian advisers to presidential successors.
A White House spokesman declined to comment on the continuity of government activities cited in the book.
People who advocate that the government declassify more of the nation's official documents said the book would fuel the debate over the balance between the public's right to know and the need to keep more military and intelligence matters secret in the campaign against terror.
"This is part of an ongoing tug of war to define the boundaries of public information," said Steven Aftergood, director of the Federation of American Scientists' Project on Government Secrecy. "There has been a steady withdrawal of information from the public domain in the present administration, and a reluctance to disclose even the most mundane of facts."