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War on Drugs: Wasted Resources

Wednesday, July 21, 2004

Saudi America? The Bush family sure thinks so

George W. Bush's campaign song for this fall should be "All About the Benjamins," because greed has always been the driving force behind him and his associates, not to mention that it would be really cool for a president to play a rap song at an official gathering. In his worship of the almighty dollar, Bush has found himself entangled in a complex web of illicit money, beginning with a friend from the National Guard and continuing through the current war in Iraq, with references to Saudis, oil, Enron, and Dick Cheney in between. Get ready to pull the wool off of your eyes and discover one of the largest conspiracies to ever infiltrate American politics.

The year is 1972. George W. Bush and James R. Bath go AWOL during their service in the National Guard.

Fast-forward to 2004. To dispel rumors about his military service record, George W. Bush releases it to the press. Instead, we are left with more questions than answers. White House press secretary Scott McClellan dismissed a reporter's question regarding the record as a "trashy rumor," but I beg to differ. We have been given the key to unlock a vast business connection linking W. to James R. Bath, James Baker, George H. W. Bush, a number of oil companies, an alleged criminal, and the bin Laden family. Our journey begins with the release of George W. Bush's military record. Two different versions of this record reached the public, but only one of them was censored. The censored version was determined to have left out the name James R. Bath, who was reprimanded for the same offense as W. at the same time. Why? Thanks to the current Bush administration's careful image control and contempt for the press, the answer is left to research.

Back to 1968. W. joins the National Guard to evade the draft. While serving, he befriends fellow serviceman James Bath. In 1976, George H. W. Bush (W.'s father) takes over the CIA and privatizes it. Bath, being an aircraft broker, is a beneficiary of this measure. James Bath then becomes the financial representative to Saudis Salem bin Laden, Osama bin Laden's half-brother, and Kahlid bin Mahfouz, who ran the Saudi royal family's bank at the time. Bin Mahfouz went on to run the Bank of Credit and Commerce International, which would later become the center of attention for scandal involving criminal funding and investor fraud.

Are you sensing a recurring theme yet? The Bushes, upon realizing that they have been used as a funnel for terrorism, decide to...quit? No. That would be too honest and make too much sense. Instead, they quickly censor future reports. However, they forgot to cover their tracks, and I am finding them via a cable internet connection.

We now find ourselves in 1976. George H. W. Bush, W.'s father, becomes director of the CIA. While serving at this position, he begins to privatize operations, and Bath is a beneficiary of this measure.

Advance forward to 1978. A man named Bill White graduates from Harvard Business School and is introduced to James Bath. White becomes Bath's business associate, managing his real estate company. The bin Laden and bin Mahfouz families both invest in this company. In return, they are granted gifts, including apartments, offices, and investments in Texas banks. Salem bin Laden and Kahlid bin Mahfouz end up buying a mansion in Houston. Meanwhile, Bush the younger starts up an oil company called Arbusto 78, with the help of bin Laden and bin Mahfouz. They contributed something to the tune of $1 million. A series of limited partnerships continue into the mid-1980's.

Is this the way to treat powerful foreigners? Never before have I heard of international business associates relocating to do business. To me, this looks like a plot to gain control has been hatched. I smell a rat already.

Move ahead into the year 1979. Under the direction of the elder Bush, the CIA funds the Mujadeen of Afghanistan to prevent the Soviets from invading. George H. W. Bush becomes vice-president in 1980, ensuring that they will be treated well. A year later, Osama bin Laden relocates to Afghanistan to support the Mujadeen. At this point, the U.S. is on the same side as Osama bin Laden.

It is now 1983. Enter Bandar bin Sultan, who is appointed Saudi ambassador to the U.S. He builds a close relationship with the Bush family, even being nicknamed "Bandar Bush." Even as al-Qaeda turns up in Saudi Arabia, Bandar Bush continues to be close to the Bush family. This is unheard of, and it will hamper investigations before, during, and after 9/11.

In 1986, White and Bath go broke. Bath ruins White's business career with 28 different lawsuits. Bill White rejected a pay-off involving silence on James Bath's involvement in the Bush family's ties to the Saudis. Bill White is now out of the picture financially, but he goes to the media to expose these secrets. You can find an interview with White here.

A year later, George W. Bush rolls all of his failed oil ventures into one company, called Harken Energy. This new company is funded by members of the BCCI, who contributed $25 million. Beginning in 1988, the public would discover that the BCCI catered to criminals. The Senate report on the BCCI Affair was edited, but here is the uncensored draft of that report.

Guess whose name appears on that report -- none other than George W. Bush's rival for this fall, Senator John F. Kerry! Some accuse him of being too rude toward his opponent, but I think it is more than justified. Kerry has witnessed and investigated a piece of this scandal for himself! Perhaps he sees the connection as well.

The CIA succeeds in one of its largest covert operations in 1989, forcing the Soviets out of Afghanistan with a $3 million campaign in Afghanistan. However, the U.S. would then abandon the country. An angered Osama returns to Saudi Arabia. I am no military strategist, but if you are going to do back-stabbing, I do not think it should involve someone with clout who can get revenge. Turning on a bin Laden effectively pitted the Bush family against itself -- a supportive business interest juxtaposed with a political opposition. This should spell disaster, right? Let the betrayal begin.

Enter Saddam Hussein, president/dictator of Iraq. When he invades Kuwait in 1991, Osama suggests raising a Saudi army to fight the invaders. However, against his wishes, the rest of the bin Laden family asks the U.S. for help. The U.S., with George H. W. Bush as president, responds and leaves 20,000 troops in Saudi Arabia afterward. Osama is now disenfranchised from the bin Laden family.

When 1992 rolls around, voters are upset with the recent failings of the Republican party. They elect Democrat Bill Clinton into office. George H. W. Bush moves on, taking on roles as an advisor to the Carlyle Group and serving on the board of directors for one of its subsidiaries. This group invests in a company that trains the Saudi military. By '93, Osama bin Laden has distanced himself from his family. He leads al-Qaeda when it attacks the World Trade Center for the first time. Osama evades capture.

In 1994, Bush the younger becomes governor of Texas. The Bush line of succession in politics has been re-established.

The year is now 1995. A car bomb strikes a U.S.-leased office in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, killing five Americans and wounding 30 others. Clinton "vows to track down those responsible." However, the Saudi government arrested and beheaded four suspects in 1996 without permitting a U.S. investigation. Trying to hide government-sponsored attacks, perhaps?

In 1996, the Taliban rises to power in Afghanistan. Around the same time, Osama bin Laden (now in Sudan) is pressured by the Clinton administration to relocate to Afghanistan. Bin Laden was not arrested despite offers from the Sudanese government allowing the U.S. to pursue him. Clinton would later state that this was his biggest regret. He had no idea that this man would commit one of the worst terrorist attacks in American history five years later. Bin Laden is now situated in Afghanistan, still the leader of al-Qaeda, now supported by the Taliban. Why was Osama not arrested, after claiming responsibility for the first WTC bombing? He committed crimes against the U.S., yet he did not pose an immediate threat? I will never understand this move, but I suspect that the Bush family had some influence in this decision.

Al-Qaeda strikes again in 1998, bombing two U.S. embassies -- Kenya and Tanzania. Nobody is arrested, once again. In October 2000, the U.S.S. cole is bombed. No suspects are found, and no search is initiated. Officials wait until mounting pressure forces them to solve the case -- four years later!

In one of the most controversial elections in U.S. history, George W. Bush defeats Al Gore to become president in 2000. His victory was determined by a 5-4 Supreme Court vote not to recount the votes. The innaguration is protested, highlighted by the throwing of eggs at the president's limo. Bush is the first president in U.S. history unable to complete the traditional walk due to the mounting protests. The next day, members of Congress have objections that eligible voters were refused at the ballot box, but not a single senator will sign them. By law, the objections are discarded.

The election was by far corrupted. Florida, the state that gave W. the determining votes, fell under Bush control. The fact that Katherine Harris, his campaign manager and Florida governor Jeb Bush, his brother, controlled the election sure helps. Why did these people not recuse themselves due to a conflict of interest? All of the ballot design, list purging, and flawed e-voting aside, should people directly involved with the Bush campaign have been lawfully permitted to remain in charge of the "impartial" election? Justice will never truly be served in the courts or in the polls until conflict-of-interest cases are clearly defined and determined by outside observers. Of course someone who has a conflict of interest will stay on -- they'll get their way!

Further complicating government is the miscommunication between the CIA and FBI. Why they both exist is beyond me. Both agencies do the same work. Further emphasizing intelligence (or lack thereof) blunders, Ziad Jarrah, soon-to-be 9/11 hijacker, is interrogated by the CIA in 2001. They find no evidence of criminal activity, but they miss one key fact -- two 'Ziad Jarrahs' were inside U.S. borders at the same time! Many more mistakes will follow, most of them being because workers were not permitted to inspect Saudis coming into the country. Also in 2001, Bush's lawyer, James Baker, engages in negotiations with the Taliban over plans to run an oil pipeline through Afghanistan. This is yet another classic example of chasing the dollar -- at any cost, including our security.

Following the major breakdowns between the CIA and the FBI, 9/11 happens. There should have been no surprises, but the news comes as a shock. Immediately, conspiracy theorists go to work, claiming everything from this Bush-Saudi connection to the date being symbolism for 9-1-1 to the U.S. planning the attacks. Rumors of Palestinians celebrating the attacks circulate through the news. No suspects are identified. We later discover that 15/19 of the hijackers who escaped security checks are Saudis. The weapon of choice: box-cutters. Airport bans become ridiculous in order to prevent this from happening again.

The suspicion continues as the bin Laden family is permitted to leave the U.S. without questioning, even though standard procedure for any criminal investigation is to interrogate relatives. Besides that, all U.S. flights have been grounded -- except for the Saudis. "Saudi privilege" ruins the investigation. Further supporting the "Saudi privilege" is James A. Baker, who defends Saudis in a massive 9/11 lawsuit.

Congress then passes the Patriot Act, which basically signs away Congress' right to approve war, and relinquishes our rights whenever terrorism is suspected. The government is permitted to do as it pleases so long as it is in the name of security. Almost immediately, the military establishes a prison in Guatanamo Bay, Cuba and begins holding suspects prisoner there. People continue to be held there today, and the feds still cannot explain why.

Meanwhile, Osama bin Laden communicated with the U.S. via video releases. In one of the releases, he claims responsibility for 9/11. When this one comes out weeks later, Bush initiates an attack on the Taliban, the Afghani government that was harboring al-Qaeda. Still no investigation occurs, and we are out of luck, maybe time. Osama escapes.

We now find ourselves in 2002 with no rights, no clear information, and a mess in Afghanistan. Since we invaded, there had no longer been a Taliban-imposed ban on opium. Afghanis return to drug dealing, and the Taliban just keeps coming back for more. They will not be totally eradicated until a year later. Afghanistan finally has a democratic government, but U.S. troops remain. The tape releases cease, and the U.S. government assumes that he is out of the picture.

Then, unexplicably, White House officials try to convince us of a connection between Iraq and al-Qaeda. Bush opponents are quick to point out that Iraq could have come from W.'s father. The proof: satellite spy photos. The Bush administration believed that Saddam Hussein was developing weapons of mass destruction and supporting bin Laden's terror organization.

When Bush states his case to invade Iraq to the U.N., he is outright rejected, and weapons inspectors find nothing. Instead, W. builds a "coalition of the willing," mainly consisting of countries that could contribute nothing. With maybe two or three other countries, the U.S. invades Iraq in March 2003. George W. Bush claims that the war will last 5 months.
Following the invasion, Osama returns with the last video release to date stating that he does not care whether Saddam lives, and no WMD are found. There goes the entire premise for war.

It is now July 2004, troops are still in Iraq, and the government has not been fully established. Furthermore, Saddam Hussein was ousted and lost. He went missing for quite some time before being captured last spring. Now, without U.N. approval, the course of action remains undetermined. Saddam is being held prisoner still. Insurgents continue to assault U.S. troops. Troops also remain in Afghanistan despite claims of victory. U.S. troops now stay in Iraq past the June 30 deadline as well.

Time out! I sense another theme -- invading and leaving troops everywhere to monitor the situation. Is this not what is commonly referred to as "policing the world?" I thought Bush the candidate was strongly opposed to this. Also suspicious is Dick Cheney's own Haliburton winning Iraq contracts unopposed. It just does not make sense for every other business in America to be uninterested.

On the home front, the Department of Homeland Security forms in 2002 with Tom Ridge at its head in order to coordinate communications between the CIA and the FBI. It fails miserably on Iraq evidence, as more claims of miscommunication abound. The department establishes the Bush administration's scare-mongering by developing a terror alert system that never dips below "elevated." The colors mean nothing. For some strange reason, the feds can never provide evidence when they raise the alert level. Apparently, the terrorists like to "chatter" quite a bit, and it always increases around holidays. John Ashcroft frequently discusses the "war on terror," a war with no enemy and constant threat. The Homeland Security team spreads the word all over the place to stock up on duct tape and plastic to protect the home from bioterror hazards following the mail crisis. Nothing comes of this, but they continue. All the while, Bush and co. try to assure us that no threats are imminent.

Actions following 9/11 follow perfect form for a manipulator. U.S. Rep. Jim McDermott should know. As a psychiatrist, he points out that the Bush administration is playing mind games so he can have his way. This is why nobody will stand up to the president and outright state that he is wrong. Do not let yourself fall into this trap.

So far, the Bush presidency has been marked by deception, greed, terror, war, invasion, and regime change for bad leadership. This entire mess formed because the Bush family made oil deals with the Saudis back in the '70s and just could not let go. I put the question to you: if the Bush administration has nearly run this country into the dirt, and the Senate agrees, is it not time for a regime change at home?

[At no point in this piece do I intend to accuse President Bush of committing any crimes. Feedback is welcome.]