Thursday, May 11, 2006

Article by David Ray Griffin

(... full article at link above)

1. False Flag Operations

The evidence that 9/11 was a false flag operation is very strong. Many Americans, however, reject this idea on a priori grounds, thereby refusing even to look at the evidence. The main a priori assumption is that America's political and military leaders simply would not commit such a heinous act. This assumption is undermined, however, once we know something about the history of false flag operations.

False Flag Operations by Other Countries

Far from being rare in the history of warfare, false flag operations are very common. They have been especially popular with imperial powers wanting to expand their empires.
In 1931, Japan, which had been exploiting Manchuria for resources, decided to take over the whole province. To have a pretext, the Japanese army blew up the tracks of its own railway near the Chinese military base in Mukden, then blamed the sabotage on Chinese solders. This "Mukden incident" occurred almost exactly 70 years prior to 9/11, on September 18, 1931. It is, in fact, referred to by the Chinese as "9/18."1

A year and a half later, the Nazis, less than a month after taking power, started a fire in the German Reichstag, then blamed it on Communists. Their proof that Communists were responsible was the "discovery" on the site of a feeble-minded left-wing radical, who had been brought there by the Nazis themselves.2 They then used the Reichstag fire as a pretext to arrest thousands of Communists and Social Democrats, shut down unfriendly newspapers, and annul civil rights.3
That was 1933. Six years later, Hitler wanted a pretext to attack Poland. The solution, known as "Operation Himmler," was to have Germans dressed as Poles stage 21 raids on the Polish-German border. In some cases, as in the raid on the Gleiwitz radio station, a dead German convict dressed as a Pole was left at the scene. The next day, Hitler, referring to these 21 "border incidents," presented the attack on Poland as a defensive necessity.4

More germane to the question of 9/11, of course, is whether American leaders would do such things.

U.S. Wars Based on False Charges of Enemy Aggression

In 1846, President James Polk, anxious to expand the American empire, had the U.S. army build a fort on the Rio Grande, some 150 miles south of the commonly accepted border between Texas and Mexico. After 16 US soldiers died in a skirmish, Polk told Congress that Mexico had "shed American blood upon the American soil." This claim was called "the sheerest deception" by a congressman named Abraham Lincoln.5 Nevertheless, the Mexican-American war was on and in 1848, Mexico, being out-gunned, signed a peace treaty ceding away half of its country, including California, for a paltry sum.6
In 1898, the United States falsely accused Spain of blowing up a battleship, the USS Maine, which President McKinley had sent, uninvited, to Havana Harbor. This accusation, which led to the chant "Remember the Maine, to hell with Spain," was used as a pretext to start the Spanish-American war, through which America took control of Cuba, Puerto Rico, and the Philippines. In the latter case, the United States, after helping the Filipinos defeat the Spanish, went to war against the Filipinos, claiming that they had fired on American soldiers. A quarter of a million Filipinos died in the resulting slaughter, which provoked the usually ironic William James to say: "God damn the U.S. for its vile conduct in the Philippine Isles."7 Many years later, General Arthur MacArthur admitted that American troops had fired first to start a pre-arranged battle.8

In 1964, a false account of an incident in the Tonkin Gulf was used to start the full-scale war in Vietnam, which brought about the deaths of over 58,000 Americans and some two million Vietnamese.9

Of course, we might be tempted to reply, although Americans have done such things to enemy nations ("All's fair in love and war"), they would never deliberately kill citizens of friendly countries for political reasons. That assumption, however, is undermined in a recent book, NATO's Secret Armies, by Swiss historian Daniele Ganser. This book demonstrates that during the Cold War, the United States sponsored false flag operations in many countries of Western Europe in order to discredit Communists and other leftists to prevent them from coming to power through elections.10
Italy suffered a wave of deadly terrorist attacks in the 1970s, including a massive explosion at the Bologna railway station that killed 85 people.11 Between 1983 and '85, Belgium suffered a series of attacks, known as the "Brabant massacres," in which hooded men opened fire on people in shopping centers, "reduc[ing] Belgium to a state of panic." At the time, all these attacks in Italy, Belgium, and other countries were blamed on Communists and other leftists, often by virtue of planted evidence.12

In the 1990s, however, it was discovered that the attacks were really carried out by right-wing organizations that were coordinated by a secret unit within NATO, which was guided by the CIA and the Pentagon.13 A former member of the organization that carried out the massacres in Belgium, which was funded by the Pentagon's Defense Intelligence Agency, explained that the plan was to "make the population believe that these terrorist attacks were done by the Left."14 The former head of Italian counter-intelligence, in explaining the motivation behind the attacks in Italy, said: "The CIA wanted to create an Italian nationalism capable of halting what it saw as a slide to the left." To achieve this goal, he added, it seemed that "the Americans would do anything."15
Operation Northwoods

If Americans would do anything to achieve their political goals in Europe, would they do similar things within America itself? Early in 1962, which was shortly after Fidel Castro had overthrown the pro-American dictator Batista, the Joint Chiefs of Staff presented President Kennedy with a plan, called Operation Northwoods. This plan described "pretexts which would provide justification for US military intervention in Cuba," partly "by developing the international image of the Cuban government as rash and irresponsible, and as an alarming and unpredictable threat to the peace of the Western Hemisphere." Possible actions to create this image included a "Communist Cuban terror campaign in the Miami area . . . and . . . Washington" and a "Remember the Maine" incident, in which: "We could blow up a U.S. ship in Guantánamo Bay and blame Cuba." Although President Kennedy did not approve this plan, it had been endorsed by all the Joint Chiefs of Staff in the Pentagon.16