The Use of Pliable and Reliable Assets to Advance a Narrative

By Jeff Gates

Many of America’s most prominent political leaders were induced to comment on “International Burn A Koran Day”—a high profile provocation proposed by a Christian-Zionist preacher with a small congregation in a small town in Florida.

When U.S. General David Petraeus spoke out against the proposal, the issue immediately gained an international profile as did Pastor Terry Jones who quickly became an international celebrity.

One need not dig deep to identify who may have advised General Petraeus to grant a global profile to a provocation consistent with Israeli goals for the region.

In March, as head of Central Command, Petraeus offered testimony to the Senate Armed Services Committee confirming facts that have long been obvious but are seldom mentioned: our “special relationship” with Israel and its oppressive occupation of Palestine undermine U.S. interests in the Middle East and endanger American personnel. Read it for yourself:

“The enduring hostilities between Israel and some of its neighbors present distinct challenges to our ability to advance our interests… Israeli-Palestinian tensions often flare into violence and large-scale armed confrontations. The conflict foments anti-American sentiment due to a perception of U.S. favoritism for Israel. Arab anger over the Palestinian question limits the strength and depth of U.S. partnerships with governments and peoples in the [region] and weakens the legitimacy of moderate regimes in the Arab world. Meanwhile, al-Qaeda and other militant groups exploit that anger to mobilize support. The conflict also gives Iran influence in the Arab world through its clients, Lebanese Hizballah and Hamas….”

Petraeus is often spoken of as a potential Republican presidential candidate. Thus the chagrin among some in Washington when this high profile military leader appeared to curry favor with Max Boot, a former Wall Street Journal op-ed editor and outspoken Zionist. In an apparent attempt to soften the candor of his written testimony before the Senate, he wrote to Boot:

“Does it help if folks know that I hosted Elie Wiesel and his wife at our quarters last Sun night?!  And that I will be the speaker at?the 65th anniversary of the liberation of the concentration camps in mid-Apr at the Capitol Dome…”

Boot wrote back to assure him that those comments were not necessary as Petraeus had not been described as anti-Semitic. Boot then posted a pro-Petraeus piece on the website for Commentary, a neoconservative publication, assuring readers that the general is not anti-Israel and dismissing his anti-Israel comments as inserted by staff in his statement—that Petraeus reviewed.

The Supporting Cast

After General Petraeus, now senior commander in Afghanistan, created a high profile for the Burn-A-Koran controversy, comments were offered by Attorney General Eric Holder, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and President Barack Obama. With that, the provocation went viral.

These fuel-the-fire comments were followed by a personal appeal to Pastor Jones in a phone call from Defense Secretary Robert Gates that also went viral.

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As any game theorist could predict, even the possibility of such a psy-ops (a Koran book burning) was guaranteed to galvanize anti-American sentiments and catalyze anti-American demonstrations. As the book burning gained steadily more profile, this provocation increased the probability of catalyzing long-lasting anti-American sentiments.

This stunt bears a remarkable resemblance to a Newsweek story alleging that a U.S. soldier flushed a Koran down the toilet. Though that May 2005 account by Michael Isikoff was later withdrawn in substantial part, its publication provoked an earlier well-timed response by setting off anti-American demonstrations in Muslim countries worldwide.

At first, the story gained only scant attention. That muted response changed dramatically when Pakistani cricket star Imran Khan gave Isikoff’s story an international profile by announcing from Islamabad that American military personnel had desecrated a holy Islamic text.

That’s when this Clash of Civilizations-catalyzing, U.S.-discrediting account went viral. In practical effect, Khan’s celebrity was appropriated to associate the U.S. military with conduct similar in its psy-ops effect to the profile given an American proposing to burn a Koran.

Newsweek was recently acquired by Sidney Harman, the husband of California Congresswoman Jane Harman, the Jewish Zionist chair of the Intelligence Subcommittee of the House Committee on Homeland Security. At the time of this provocation, Newsweek was a magazine affiliate of The Washington Post newspaper, an influential opinion-shaping newspaper based in the nation’s capital.

In the annals of “field-based warfare,” the Koran-flushing story will go down in history as a classic psy-ops for its success in targeting the minds of a built-in audience outside the U.S.—cricket fans—as a vulnerable and receptive shared field of consciousness.

When the high-profile Imran Khan described the alleged incident as factual, this operation transcended the literacy barrier as it provoked Muslims who did not even need to read in order to be reached—and provoked.

And because the story targeted cricket fans, its impact was disastrous to Americans while also remaining invisible to America where cricket is neither a well known activity nor a widely played sport.

In what passes for mainstream American media, the Isikoff story was called news. In national security parlance, the well-timed launch of that provocative storyline is called tactical psy-ops. So far, the Koran-burning story is being attributed solely to the whims of a southern preacher.

Stay tuned. It may be only a coincidence that Jones was a high school classmate of Rush Limbaugh, America’s most provocative radio talk show host.

Information Age Warfare

If this sounds familiar, it should. You may recall when the wartime role played by global media became apparent in the Clash-catalyzing “cartoon riots” that swept the world in February 2006. That reaction followed the publication in France, Germany, Italy and Spain of graphic images of the prophet Muhammad that first appeared in a Danish newspaper in September 2005.

Citing free speech as the rationale, cultural editor Flemming Rose published a compilation of cartoons certain to be seen by Muslims as blasphemous, including one featuring Muhammad with a bomb in place of a turban.

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An Ashkenazi native of Ukraine, Rose worked as a reporter for five years in Moscow during the oligarchi-zation of Russia. As his contribution to that nationwide fraud, he translated into Danish a fawning 1990 autobiography (Against the Stream) of presidential candidate Boris Yeltsin whose administration enabled the wildly successful financial pillaging of Russia.

Six of the top seven Russian oligarchs were Ashkenazim who qualified for Israeli citizenship.

Rose’s career tracks the trajectory of a typical media asset. After Russia, he relocated to Washington, D.C. Again employed as a journalist, he traveled to China with Bill Clinton before returning to Moscow to work for Jyllands-Posten, a rightwing Danish publication known for its anti-immigrant news fare.

Before catalyzing the cartoon crisis, Rose published a flattering interview with the Islam-bashing Daniel Pipes who heads Campus Watch. This organization monitors, disrupts and seeks to intimidate pro-Palestinian speakers when they accept invitations to speak at U.S. colleges.

Pipes is the neoconservative, Jewish-Zionist son of “Team B” leader Richard Pipes a Polish emigre. Team B was a 1976 alternative intelligence assessment whose success with phony intelligence during the presidency of Gerald Ford (when G.H.W. Bush was C.I.A. Director) informed those who fixed the intelligence that enabled the U.S. to segue seamlessly from the Cold War to the War on Terrorism during the presidency of G.W. Bush.

After the promotion of Rose to cultural editor and publication of the provocative cartoons, CNN anchor Wolf Blitzer featured Pipes on The Situation Room. By showcasing Pipes, Blitzer ensured the airwaves would carry his anti-Islam interpretation of the Rose-catalyzed, media-fueled crisis.

Blitzer elected not to inform the viewers of CNN (“the most trusted name in news”) that he (Blitzer) served as an editor of Near East Report, the Israel lobby’s in-house journal, or that he spent 17 years with The Jerusalem Post, or that he published a sympathetic book on Israeli super-spy Jonathan Pollard who did more than anyone in history to damage U.S. national security.

The ensuing crisis cost many lives while the reaction to that provocation consumed the public’s attention and polarized public opinion internationally. Appearing on television, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice used the crisis to criticize Iran and Syria, adding American credibility and military authority to stoke The Clash of Civilizations as the post-Cold War narrative.

Overall, the response heightened tensions and made an attack on Iran appear more reasonable as scenes of widespread outrage by Muslims fueled Islamo-phobia in the West. To escape the media scrutiny, Rose fled to the U.S. where he vacationed in Miami.

Timing is Everything

The usual suspects stepped into the fray in support of Pastor Terry Jones’ First Amendment right to further outrage an already outraged Muslim population for whom the Koran is a sacred text.

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Supporting cast for the Jones stunt included New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg who chose an annual Iftar dinner at Gracie Mansion to cite the U.S. Constitution in support of this provocation. Likewise for New York Times columnist Charles Blow whose prominently placed op-ed on September 11th urged that “great American debates” should not be “tempered for terrorists.”

National security may (at long last) be catching on to how those complicit in these psy-ops use our guaranteed freedoms (of speech, press, religion, etc.) to undermine our freedom. It’s no coincidence that those most concerned about domestic eavesdropping by national security are drawn from the same ranks as those complicit in this ongoing manipulation of public opinion.

The high profile nature of this latest 911 anniversary ensured that agent provocateurs would use the event to keep hate alive. The day prior, President Obama urged that Israel extend its “temporary partial freeze” on settlements for the sake of sustaining the peace talks.

Meanwhile Jewish Zionist Pamela Zeller sponsored a speech at Ground Zero by Dutch politician Geert Wilders who likens the Koran to Mein Kampf. A staunch supporter of Israel, Wilders is known for his incendiary speeches with a strong anti-Islam theme.

Geller, a disciple of Russian philosopher Ayn Rand (Alisa Rosenbaum), advocates measures to “Stop Islamization of America.” She emphasizes the role of Barack Obama in doing the bidding of “Islamic overlords” in what she calls “The Obama Administration’s War on America.”

An outspoken Jewish Zionist, Geller urges that Israel “give up nothing.” A regular commentator on Zionist-dominated media outlets (CNN, Fox News, The Washington Post, The New York Times), she insists that Israel should “take back Gaza” and “secure Judea and Samaria”—better known as the West Bank, the key area of contention on expansion of the settlements.

Geller is also a driving force behind anti-Islam hate groups working to scuttle plans for an Islamic  Cultural Center two blocks from the 911 site. Allied with others in the hate campaign, she was among the first in November 2009 to describe the shootings on Fort Hood, Texas as a “Muslim terror attack.”

A Vietnam veteran,   is a widely acclaimed author, attorney, investment banker, educator and consultant to government, corporate and union leaders worldwide. He served for seven years as counsel to the U.S. Senate Committee on Finance. He is widely published in the trade, popular and academic press. His latest book is Guilt by Association: How Deception and Self-Deceit Took America to War. His previous books include Democracy at Risk: Rescuing Main Street From Wall Street and The Ownership Solution: Toward a Shared Capitalism for the 21st Century. Topical commentaries appear on the Criminal State website. Jeff is a regular contributor to Opinion Maker.

Next: Staying on message to advance the narrative.

First in a 4-part series Part I

Signs of a Rift with Israel? Part II