CIA: Making the World Safe for US Oil for 73 Years

 

The Crash of Flight 3804: A Lost Spy, a Daughter’s Quest, and the Deadly Politics of the Great Game for Oil

by Charlotte Dennett

Chelsea Green Press (2020)

Book Review

In my view, this books makes a fairly compelling case that US Cold War strategy was more about protecting US oil interests (specifically pipelines) than fighting Communism. In The Crash of Flight 3804, Dennett describes her decades long battle to declassify intelligence records related to the plane crash that killed her father in Ethiopia on March 24, 1947. Daniel Dennett, previously employed by the Office of Strategic Services (OSS), was working for the immediate CIA predecessor the Defense Intelligence Group (DIG) at the time of his death. Although his cover was Beirut State Department Cultural Attache, declassified records indicate he performed a vital counterintelligence role in protecting US strategic oil interests from, not only Russia, but also France and Britain.

Beginning in 1945, Emperor Haile Selassie signed oil deals with Sinclair Oil and TWA to break the British stranglehold* over Ethiopia. Charlotte believes he was flying from Saudi Arabia to Ethiopia to further cement the US oil foothold in that country.

As she describes it, the post World War II years witnessed a mad scramble by the US, France, Britain and Russia to stake claims to key oil resources as Asian, Middle East and African countries declared their independence from European colonizers. Prior to the development of oil supertankers in the 1970s, overland pipelines were the most efficient method of transporting Middle East oil to European and Asian markets.

Within weeks of her father’s death, Truman signed the 1947 National Security Act that created the CIA. The latter would undertake their first-ever coup in 1949 again Syrian President Shukri al-Quwatli, who refused to allow the Trans-Arabian Pipeline (TAPLINE) to transit his country. He was replaced by an army officer who approved the pipeline, and TAPLINE construction began immediately.

Dennett then traces, country by country, how all US military bases and interventions in the Middle East and Mediterranean follow existing and proposed oil pipelines routes.

I especially enjoyed her detailed analysis of the so-called civil war in Syria, starting with Robert F Kennedy’s revelations in 2014 about his grandfather Joseph P Kennedy’s role in a secret committee to investigate CIA coup plots in Jordan, Syria, Iraq and Iran. Although the 1956 Bruce Lovett report has since be declassified, its contents remain unknown to the US public.

Kennedy’s assertions about US backing for militant anti-Assad jihadists were subsequently validated by State Department emails leaked by Wikileaks. Likewise Dennett cites Hillary Clinton emails leaked (by Wikileaks) in 2016 revealing that Saudi Arabia and Qatar were funding ISIS militants in Syria and Iraq with State Department knowledge.

Her analysis of the current war in Yemen (whose oil reserves are believed to exceed those of the entire Persian Gulf) is spellbinding.


*British occupation of Ethiopia began in 1941, following their ouster of Italian troops.

 

 

Operation Gladio: The Secret CIA Program to Control Europe

Operation Gladio

BBC (1992)

Film Review

This 1992 documentary is based on rare archival interviews of former Gladio operatives. Gladio was a secret US/UK intelligence-run program run across Europe between 1945 and its public exposure in 1990. It’s main purpose was to crush strikes and public protests and to prevent groups unfriendly to US/UK interests from coming to power. The main strategies employed were false flag terrorist attacks (mainly bombings and assassinations) that were officially blamed on left wing groups

The Office of Strategic Services or OSS (which became the CIA in 1947) and MI6 (the British secret service) divided up spheres of influence. The Brits ran Gladio in Portugal, Spain, the Netherlands and Belgium and the US France, Germany, Denmark, Norway, Italy, Turkey and Greece. In each of these countries, UK/US intelligence recruited police and secret services, fascist groups and Nazi spies “left behind” when Hitler’s army withdrew from occupied Europe.

Although elected parliaments (and many prime ministers) were never informed of Gladio’s existence, all NATO countries were forced to join as a condition of NATO membership. Moreover the French continued to participate in Gladio after President Charles DeGaulle withdrew France from NATO in 1966.**

In this film, former Gladio operatives from Italy and Belgium discuss their motivation for participating, their role in infiltrating targeted left wing groups,*** the role of local CIA operatives in providing funding, training and other support, and their eventual disillusionment with illegal terrorist actions that deliberately targeted civilians. There are also interviews with CIA officials involved in funding, arming and training Gladio operatives and with Italian Investigating judges, whistleblowers and journalists who helped bring Gladio to public attention.


*In a false flag operation, deliberate deception creates the appearance of responsibility of a particular group or nation for a given atrocity, disguising the actual source of responsibility.

**DeGaulle made the 1966 decision to withdraw French troops from NATO after learning a secret assassination team operating out of NATO headquarters in Belgium was responsible for four assassination attempts against him. French intelligence would provide details about this group to New Orleans District Attorney James Garrison in his prosecution of Kennedy assassination co-conspirator Clay Shaw (see New Evidence in JFK Assassination). French troops would rejoin NATO under President Nicholas Sarkozy in 2009.

***Germany’s Red Army Faction (aka Beider-Meinhoff gang), Italy’s Red Brigades and France’s Action Directe are the best known so-called leftist groups infiltrated (and likely run) by Gladio.

 

What You Never Learned in School About the Vietnam War

 

vietnam war

The Vietnam War

Part 1 “Deja Vu”

Directed by Ken Burns and Lyn Novick (2017)

Film Review

Last night Maori TV started a ten-part series on the Vietnam War. The first episode covers the brutal French occupation of Vietnam (1858-1961) and the rise of Ho Chi Minh and General Giap, considered one of greatest military strategists of the 20th century. It was quite alarming to realize that so much I’ve been taught about Vietnam is pure disinformation.

Among other shocking facts I learned about this shameful chapter in US history:

  • The OSS (Office of Strategic Services – precursor to the CIA) dropped a secret team into Vietnam in 1941 to meet with Ho Chi Minh (who was fighting for independence from the French) and provide his men with arms and military equipment.
  • Immediately after the atomic bombing of Hiroshima, Ho Chi Minh and his followers overpowered French officials to declare independence, with the support of the OSS.
  • As a senator John F Kennedy unconditionally supported Vietnamese independence and self-determination. He later reverse himself as president.
  • Ho Chi Minh repeatedly wrote to Truman requesting US support after French troops re-invaded Vietnam in 1946. The CIA intercepted the letters and never gave them to the President.
  • The line dividing North and South Vietnam, drawn at a 1954 Geneva peace conference, was purely arbitrary. The Vietcong American troops were fighting was actually a South Vietnamese resistance movement against South Vietnamese dictator Ngo Dinh Diem.

This first episode is aptly named “Deja Vu” – this wouldn’t be the last time OSS/CIA- backed “freedom fighters” would go on to bite the US government in the butt.

Did the CIA Create the Hippie Movement?

george-morrison

Admiral George Stephen Morrison

Inside the LC: The Strange But Mostly True Story of Laurel Canyon and the Birth of the Hippie Generation

By Dave McGowan (2008)

Free PDF: Inside the LC

Book Review

Inside the LC is a collection of blog posts Dave McGowan published in 2008 about the close relationship between the US military intelligence complex and the rock stars who created the hippy rock culture that emerged from the Laurel Canyon neighborhood of Los Angeles. As he relates the detailed family histories of various rock stars, it’s uncanny how many of them originated from Washington DC and families with military intelligence backgrounds. A few of them had personal intelligence backgrounds.

Examples include

  • Jim Morrison – son of George Stephen Morrison, the admiral piloting the warship involved in the phony Gulf of Tonkin incident used to justify the introduction of ground troops into Vietnam.
  • Frank Zappa – son of chemical warfare specialist at facility implicated in MKUltra.*
  • John Phillips (The Mamas and the Papas) – son of military intelligence officer. By strange coincidence, Philips himself was in Cuba “fighting for Castro” at the time of the Cuban revolution.
  • Stephen Stills (The Byrds/Crosby, Stills and Nash) – product of career military family. Stills himself served in Vietnam (presumably either as CIA or Special Operations) prior to the introduction of ground troops.
  • David Crosby (The Byrds/Crosby, Stills and Nash) – son of military intelligence officer.
  • Jackson Browne – son of OSS** officer.
  • Joan Baez – daughter of CIA officer who worked at MIT
  • John Denver (aka Henry John Deutschendorft) – son of career Air Force officer stationed at Roswell.
  • Emilylou Harris – daughter of career military officer stationed in Washington DC
  • Phil Ochs – openly talked about working for CIA. Also happened to be in Chile in 1973 during CIA coup.

McGowan also explores the intelligence links of the movie stars and Rand Corporation*** employees and supporters who lived in Laurel Canyon. Various movie stars worked clandestinely at the CIA’s secret movie studio the Lookout Mountain Laboratory (in Laurel Canyon). McGowan believes it’s no coincidence that the start of the anti-Vietnam War movement in 1965 was quickly followed by a flood of rock stars moving from Washington DC to Laurel Canyon – to rub shoulders with Hollywood actors who worked for the CIA in their spare time. In fact, he makes a strong case that the whole hippy/drug/sex/music scene was engineered by the CIA (and heavily promoted by CIA-controlled corporate media outlets) to lure young people away from the antiwar movement.

About half the book is devoted to the absurd number of freak uninvestigated deaths (including those committed by singer/songwriter Charles Manson and his followers) in Laurel Canyon. Among the suspicious deaths McGowan covers are those of Jimi Hendrix, Mama Cass Elliot, James Dean, Sal Mineo, Natalie Wood, Brian Jones (Rolling Stones), Ricky Nelson, John Belushi, John Denver, Phil Hartman, Dennis Wilson (Beach Boys) and Jim Morrison.

McGowan also finds it quite strange that a number of these bands came out of nowhere despite having virtually no talent. Jim Morrison, for example, was incarnated virtually overnight as a Sunset Strip rock star with a backing band (which had no prior band experience) and a full repertoire of songs he allegedly wrote before the Doors was even formed. Exactly how he wrote these songs is even more mysterious given that he couldn’t play an instrument or read music, especially given his sudden transformation from a clean cut collegiate conservative to a brooding sex symbol.


*MKUltra – a CIA mind control project that engaged in illegal experimentation on human subjects.

**The Office of Strategic Service (OSS) – the US intelligence agency that morphed into the CIA following World War II

***Rand Corporation – a nonprofit research corporation with close links to the US military-intelligence complex