December 15, 2014 - The Constantine Report    
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March 5th 2020 12

Are you using the best credit card when ordering food for delivery?

The key to more success is to have a lot of pillows. Always remember in the jungle there’s a lot of they in there, after you will make it to paradise. Egg whites, turkey sausage, wheat toast, water.

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March 5th 2020 12

Are you using the best credit card when ordering food for delivery?

The key to more success is to have a lot of pillows. Always remember in the jungle there’s a lot of they in there, after you will make it to paradise. Egg whites, turkey sausage, wheat toast, water.

Continue reading
Image
March 5th 2020 12

Are you using the best credit card when ordering food for delivery?

The key to more success is to have a lot of pillows. Always remember in the jungle there’s a lot of they in there, after you will make it to paradise. Egg whites, turkey sausage, wheat toast, water.

Continue reading
Image
March 5th 2020 12

Are you using the best credit card when ordering food for delivery?

The key to more success is to have a lot of pillows. Always remember in the jungle there’s a lot of they in there, after you will make it to paradise. Egg whites, turkey sausage, wheat toast, water.

Continue reading
Image
March 5th 2020 12

Are you using the best credit card when ordering food for delivery?

The key to more success is to have a lot of pillows. Always remember in the jungle there’s a lot of they in there, after you will make it to paradise. Egg whites, turkey sausage, wheat toast, water.

Continue reading
Image
March 5th 2020 12

Are you using the best credit card when ordering food for delivery?

The key to more success is to have a lot of pillows. Always remember in the jungle there’s a lot of they in there, after you will make it to paradise. Egg whites, turkey sausage, wheat toast, water.

Continue reading

Torture is a Terrorist Act -- Not an "Interrogation Technique" -- Effective Only if it isn't Secret

This is a modified py-6 that occupies the entire horizontal space of its parent.

” … Torture is a terrorist act. … Torture isn’t about secretly collecting information. It never has been. Torture only works when it isn’t secret. …”

Guess Who Else Tortured People Like the CIA Did — Soviets and Nazis

The Soviet Union was good at torture.

But the Soviets excelled at torture because they understood its usefulness. “Our task is not only to destroy you physically,” a Stalinist interrogator explained to a prisoner in 1948. “But also to smash you morally before the eyes of the society.”

History’s great agents of pain knew what the CIA pretends not to.

Torture is a terrorist act

degradingOn Dec. 9, the U.S. Senate Select Committee on Intelligence released a 525-page report documenting the CIA’s torture of alleged terrorists.

The Senate report admits that torture was not an effective way of gathering intelligence. “At no time did the CIA’s coercive interrogation techniques lead to the collection of imminent threat intelligence,” stated committee chair Sen. Dianne Feinstein, a California Democrat.

The CIA and its allies say the opposite. “The documents will demonstrate that the program was effective in saving American and allied lives and in preventing another mass casualty attack on American soil,” former CIA director George J. Tenet shot back.

Both miss the point. Torture isn’t about secretly collecting information. It never has been. Torture only works when it isn’t secret. Fear is only effective when it spreads. Terrorism only works when it happens in public.

The Nazis and Soviets understood this. The world’s most brutal dictators—to whom the CIA outsourced some of its torture—also understand it.

Dialectics of pain

The Soviet army chased the Nazis into Poland in 1945—and stayed there when World War II ended. The Polish resistance movement switched from fighting Nazis to battling communists. They were heroes to everyday Poles. Moscow sent secret police to help deal with them.

A decade of torture, mock trials and public confessions followed. Polish historian Marek Jan Chodakiewicz documented that dark period in The Dialectics of Pain.

The Soviets in Poland captured thousands of insurgents. Often, they didn’t bother charging them with a crime.

“Instead, the secret policemen simply forced them to reveal the infrastructure of their organization, to divulge the whereabouts of their confederates and to confess to general charges like ‘killing Jews’ or ‘killing communists,’” Chodakiewicz wrote.

The confessions—even though they weren’t true—soured the public on the resistance.

“The objective of the … endeavor,” Chodakiewicz explained, “was to break the spirit of the individual under interrogation and then to destroy his image in the eyes of the public.”

Soviet methods of extraction were brutal. Polish resistance fighter Kazimierz Moczarski went into great detail about the “49 types of torture and battery” his tormentors used.

They beat him all over his body, ripped hair from his beard and crotch and forced him to sit naked on a bolt. The secret police also subjected Moczarski to several punishments the CIA employed decades later.

The Stalinists stripped Moczarski naked and left him in solitary confinement for days. They deprived him of sleep for more than a week, forcing him to stand up in his cell and slapping him awake when he dozed. He recalled powerful and terrifying hallucinations.

They denied Moczarski medical care and threatened his family with harm. They claimed his wife was a whore.

Sound familiar? According to the Senate report, the CIA kept its captives awake for upwards of 180 hours. The prisoners hallucinated. The spooks forced captives to stand for hours on broken limbs.

Abu Zubaydah—one of the CIA’s first prisoners—got shot during his capture. The Americans let the wound fester.

They threatened to rape the mother of another captive. One interrogator played Russian roulette with a detainee. That’s a deadly game where two people take turns aiming a loaded pistol at their own heads. The winner gets to live.

The CIA did all this—it said—to gain intelligence. It claimed these prisonersknew things about ongoing terror plots.

In truth, the Agency extracted next to no actual intelligence. Seven of the 39 victims gave no information at all. The other 32 made up stories about terrorist plots in order to end their torment.

The KGB would have spun that information into propaganda. If the CIA did the same, it isn’t owning up to it.

The Senate report reveals that the CIA figured out early on that torture wasn’t resulting in useful intel. After all, the Agency derived its torture tactics on reports from American airmen who had been captured in North Vietnam. The Vietnamese had designed these techniques to extract false confessions for propaganda purposes.

The North Vietnamese—learning from their Soviet backers—understood torture. The CIA did not. They wanted to change the old Soviet model. They wanted intelligence, not confessions.

The CIA “need[ed] a different working model for interrogating terrorists,” an Agency torturer explains in the Senate report. “Where confessions are not the ultimate goal.”

‘Verschärfte Vernehmung’

Like the CIA, the Nazis carefully explained that torture was only for extracting intelligence. They called it verschärfte Vernehmung, or “sharpened interrogation.”

“The sharpened interrogation may not be applied in order to induce confessions,” according to a June 1942 directive from S.S. Gruppenführer and Gestapo chief Heinrich Müller.

“[The techniques] may only be applied if … it has been ascertained that the prisoner can give information about important facts, connections or plans hostile to the state.”

“The sharpening can consist of the following,” the memo continued. “Hard bed, dark cell, sleep deprivation [and] exhaustive exercise.” Nazis were also allowed to beat the prisoners with a stick.

“In a case of more than 20 blows,” Müller wrote. “A doctor must be present.”

But the Gestapo in the field didn’t abide by the memo. Nazi officer Richard Bruns tortured citizens of occupied Norway. After the war, that country’s supreme court tried him for war crimes.

The descriptions of Bruns’ sharpened interrogation techniques will sound familiar to anyone who’s been reading the Senate report.

“Leg screws were fastened to his legs and he was beaten with various implements,” one witness testified, describing the Nazis’ torture of a comrade. “Later he was thrown unconscious into a cellar, where he remained for four days before receiving medical attention.”

“Multiple CIA detainees were subjected to the CIA’s enhanced interrogation techniques despite their medical conditions,” the Senate report states.

“Between 1942 and 1945, Bruns used the method of verschärfte Vernehmung on 11 Norwegian citizens,” noted the trial record. “This method involved the use of various implements of torture, cold baths and blows and kicks in the face and all over the body.”

“Abu Hudhaifa was subjected to ice water baths and 66 hours of standing sleep deprivation,” according to the Senate report. “He was released because the CIA discovered he was likely not the person he was believed to be.”

Officially, the Third Reich only tortured to gain information. In practice, torture served as a warning to civilians who might cause problems.

Survivors of the Ohrdruf concentration camp demonstrate Nazi torture methods. Photo via Wikimediacommons
 
“The purpose of the camps was twofold,” Nikita Kusnezov wrote in her memoir Reeds in the Wind.“The spreading of terror and organized liquidation of individuals.”

Kusnezov grew up in Eastern Europe and survived both Hitler and Stalin. “To enforce blind obedience of the multitudes,” she wrote, “the concentration camps were established.”

“No attempt was made to hide what was happening in the camps. These camps were there to terrorize the population and one could not do so in secret.”

In The Dialectics of Pain, Chodakiewicz explained that by 1948, many of the anti-Soviet Polish insurgents were so terrified of capture and torture that they would rather die on the battlefield.

“Some even committed suicide,” he wrote. “Or upon request dispatched their seriously wounded comrades to spare them from being captured. At least on one occasion the underground press praised the suicide of a disabled insurgent as ‘heroic.’”

Torture is a terrible method of interrogation but it’s a great way of spreading terror.

Iran knows this. Tehran sends dissidents to the Evin House of Detention for torture and abuse. The prison is well-known. It’s located on the northern outskirts of Tehran across the street from Shahid Beheshti University.

North Koreans know that rebels often end up in the infamous Camp 22. Syrians are well aware of the methods of torture the regime employs at Tadmor prison.

U.S. Sen. John McCain knows. The Arizona Republican was a prisoner of war in North Vietnam for more than five years.

“I know from personal experience that the abuse of prisoners will produce more bad than good intelligence,” McCain said on Dec. 9 while defending the Senate’s torture report.

“I know that victims of torture will offer intentionally misleading information if they think their captors will believe it,” he continued. “I know they will say whatever they think their torturers want them to say if they believe it will stop their suffering.”

Torture doesn’t save lives. The CIA either didn’t know this or isn’t admitting to it. The Agency’s attempts to cover its tracks by burning evidence and stonewalling investigators reveals it for what it’s been all along.

A group of sadists flogging prisoners in the dark while no one watched.

https://medium.com/war-is-boring/guess-who-else-tortured-people-like-the-cia-did-soviets-and-nazis-e65357a309b9

It says a lot about former secretary of state and presumed presidential aspirant Hillary Clinton that she’s a member of the Henry Kissinger Fan Club. Progressives who despised George W. Bush might want to examine any warm, fuzzy feelings they harbor for Clinton.

She has made no effort to hide her admiration for Kissinger and his geopolitical views. Now she lays it all out clearly in a Washington Post review of his latest book, World Order.

Clinton acknowledges differences with Kissinger, but apparently these do not keep her from saying that “his analysis … largely fits with the broad strategy behind the Obama administration’s effort over the past six years to build a global architecture of security and cooperation for the 21st century.”

Beware of politicians and courtiers who issue solemn declarations about building global architectures. To them the rest of us are mere “pieces upon a chess-board.” Security and cooperation are always the announced ends, yet the ostensible beneficiaries usually come to grief. Look where such poseurs have been most active: the Middle East, North Africa, Ukraine. As they say about lawyers, if we didn’t have so-called statesmen, we wouldn’t need them.

If I didn’t know better, I’d suspect some pseudonymous writer of having fun with irony in this review. Behold:

President Obama explained the overarching challenge we faced in his Nobel lecture in December 2009. After World War II, he said, “America led the world in constructing an architecture to keep the peace.…”

Keep the peace — if you don’t count the mass atrocity that was the Vietnam War, the U.S.-sponsored Israeli oppression of Palestinians, and various massacres carried out by U.S.-backed “leaders” in such places as Bangladesh (formerly East Pakistan), East Timor, Chile, and elsewhere.

One Henry Kissinger had a hand in all these crimes, by the way. Strangely, Clinton doesn’t mention them.

America, at its best, is a problem-​solving nation. Iraq, Syria, Afghanistan, and Libya are only the latest examples of problems America solved during Madam Secretary’s tenure, building on the glorious successes of George W. Bush’s team. Henry the K is no doubt flattered by the homage.

Kissinger is a friend, and I relied on his counsel when I served as secretary of state. He checked in with me regularly, sharing astute observations about foreign leaders and sending me written reports on his travels.

Now things make sense. That Hillary Clinton thought Kissinger — Henry Kissinger — a worthy advisor is something we should all know as 2016 looms.

What comes through clearly in this new book is a conviction that we, and President Obama, share a belief in the indispensability of continued American leadership in service of a just and liberal order.

There really is no viable alternative. No other nation can bring together the necessary coalitions and provide the necessary capabilities to meet today’s complex global threats. But this leadership is not a birthright; it is a responsibility that must be assumed with determination and humility by each generation.

It takes chutzpah to write humility even remotely in connection with Kissinger. And if the U.S. empire is indispensable to justice and liberalism — and where are these, exactly? — we are in trouble. The record is not encouraging. Kissingerian “realism” creates global threats.

The things that make us who we are as a nation — our diverse and open society, our devotion to human rights and democratic values — give us a singular advantage in building a future in which the forces of freedom and cooperation prevail over those of division, dictatorship and destruction.

Devotion to human rights and democratic values — as shown in Egypt, where Clinton stuck by another friend, Hosni Mubarak, against a popular uprising. The woman has some friends!

“Any system of world order, to be sustainable, must be accepted as just — not only by leaders, but also by citizens,” he writes. The suggestion that Kissinger cares what ordinary citizens anywhere think is ridiculous. What he cares about is states, which he puts in one of two categories: those that buckle under to the Indispensable Empire and those that do not.

Henry, er, Hillary in 2016? You might want to rethink that.

Sheldon Richman is vice president editor at The Future of Freedom Foundation in Fairfax, Va. (www.fff.org).

http://northdenvernews.com/hillary-kissinger-progressives-beware/

“… It is possible that Rome’s municipal authority may be dissolved because of Mafia connections, and put under the administration of an external commissioner. The political consequences of doing this, though, would probably be too much: internationally, it would certainly put the Italian government’s reputation in serious trouble. For this reason, and to save Mayor Marino’s seat, Renzi is trying to make the mayor appear ‘clean’ and heroic in a city of corruption….”

An excellent in-depth analysis on recent revelations in Italy about the connections in Rome between the Mafia, the far-right and local politicians, both left and right-wing.

There are many ways to begin the story of the 37 people arrested and the related police seizures which took place in Rome on 2 December.

You can begin from the right, from the left, from the extreme poverty of the refugees seeking shelter from the wars and other humanitarian crises in Africa and the Middle East, or from the incredible wealth of the entrepreneurial class in Rome.

You can start from the recent attacks instigated by the far-right against the centres for asylum seekers, or from the demonstrations by a larger grouping of the Roman right wing which have descended on the city’s squares to protest the degradation of the suburbs, or you can even begin from a novel, Romanzo Criminale by Giancarlo De Cataldo, in which one of the protagonists of these events is appropriately called the “Black”.

Perhaps more simply, you can begin with the main characters.

massimo-carminati-206213Massimo Carminati (left), the “Black” of De Cataldo’s novel, former militant of far-right Avanguardia Nazionale, and in the 1970s and 80s the connecting link between the NAR terrorist group and the Banda della Magliana, implicated in several murders, including those of left-wing activists Fausto and Iaio, killed in 1978, and the journalist Mino Pecorelli, and also in the investigation into the massacre of Bologna in 1980. His name appears, too, in the investigations into match-fixing that have rocked Italian football in recent years.

Having fled to Japan after being given a 10-year sentence for the crimes of the Banda della Magliana, Carminati returned to Rome soon afterwards to resume his place among the entrepreneurs, mafiosi, politicians and members of the secret service. His position in the Roman underworld may help to explain why the numerous investigations and trials have never had any serious consequences for him.

According to findings emerging from the recent arrests, Carminati is at the very top of the pile in the very powerful Roman Mafia network from which goods worth more than €200m were seized, just in the 2 December raid. When Gianni Alemanno was mayor, this Mafia was part of the institutional furniture, according to the investigations. Alemanno was already in the headlines for placing several prominent Roman individuals from the far-right in the public administration’s higher echelons, and for favouring cronies when letting contracts and running public businesses in the city.

Rome is no longer run by Alemanno and the right but by Ignazio Marino, from the centre-left. This change, though, did not worry Carminati and his organisation at all as a second character has come on stage.

That person is Salvatore Buzzi, boss of the 29 June “red” cooperative. Found guilty of murder during the 80s, he turned to study in prison and is the first prisoner to have gained a degree whilst inside Rebibbia jail. He lobbies for prison reform and is applauded by the left for this. After serving his sentence, he founded a cooperative which employs ex-prisoners and which quickly started to win public contracts. The 29 June coop declared revenues of €59m in 2013. It has some powerful friends.

Money for the 29 June cooperative comes from restoration work and refuse collection but also from managing Roma camps and centres for political refugees. These contracts were awarded thanks to bi-partisan political connections, through Carminati.

Among these connections is Luca Odevaine, head of the administrative office of another former mayor of Rome (and also first secretary of the Democratic Party), Walter Veltroni. Today, Odevaine is the national manager for the reception of asylum seekers by the Ministry of the Interior. He is also directly involved in the management of CARA, a very large centre in Mineo (Sicily )where asylum seekers arriving in Lampedusa are temporarily “housed” before being sent elsewhere. Thanks to this position, Odevaine was able, in his own words, “to guide flows” of refugees towards centres managed by friendly cooperatives, in exchange for large amounts of money. In a wiretapped conversation, Buzzi remarks that he pays Odevaine a salary of €5,000 a month for this “service”.

This service, however, is highly profitable. In assisting people from Libya and Tunisia (the so-called “North African Emergency”), the Italian state has currently spent €1.3bn. In Rome, this incredibly rich cake is shared between Buzzi’s “red” cooperative and the Catholic network Arciconfraternita (linked to Comunione e Liberazione), already well-known for exploiting asylum seekers. One of Arciconfraternita’s cooperatives was accused by Save the Children of taking large numbers of adults into its centres for minors, without any concern for overcrowding or security, in order to inflate proceeds. In one of these centres, groups of 10 refugees were forced to live in apartments of 35 square meters, each apartment producing profits of €12,000 a month for the cooperative.

This business is more profitable when minors are exploited. The cooperatives receive about €50 a day for every asylum seeker under 18, and €35 for every adult. The inquiry indicates that minors were the most profitable for Buzzi and company, together with the management of Roma camps. In Rome 5,000 Roma people live in institutional camps, towards which tens of millions of euro flow every year.

Given the precedents, it is hard to imagine that any of the names involved in this investigation will pay a high price for their crimes. Rome is the richest city in Italy, where almost half of Italian millionaires live. What is emerging from the investigations, if nothing else, does help to understand the sources of some of the river of money that flows through the Italian capital. It also raises questions about the recent assaults by Rome’s far-right political forces against a centre for child asylum seekers in the suburb of Tor Sapienza.

On December 3, the leadership of Rome’s Democratic Party was reset by Prime Minister Renzi. Many high profile members of the party, in addition to Odevaine, appear to be involved in this case: both Tommaso Michea (president of the Democratic Party in Rome) and Lionello Cosentino (party secretary in Rome) have received votes thanks to their friendship with Buzzi, according to what Buzzi himself said in a wiretapped conversation.

It is possible that Rome’s municipal authority may be dissolved because of Mafia connections, and put under the administration of an external commissioner. The political consequences of doing this, though, would probably be too much: internationally, it would certainly put the Italian government’s reputation in serious trouble. For this reason, and to save Mayor Marino’s seat, Renzi is trying to make the mayor appear “clean” and heroic in a city of corruption.

Lazio’s regional president, Nicola Zingaretti (Democratic Party), has suspended all subcontracts that could have been influenced by the Mafia. It appears that Buzzi and Carminati’s “man of trust” in the regional council was Luca Gramazio, from Berlusconi’s party Forza Italia. It seems that the next step of the investigations will be directly towards the regional administration.

For more information and sources, click here.