Archive for the ‘Conspiracies’ Category

Dick Cheney

December 2, 2010

Dick CheneyFormer US Vice President, Dick Cheney, is supposed to be charged in connections with bribery from his days as Halliburton‘s CEO.  A Nigerian anti-corruption campaign uncovered scandalous details surrounding the construction of a liquefied natural gas (LNG) plant.  Halliburton, Saipem and Technip are being investigated for illegally paying $180 million to Nigerian officials to win a $6 billion contract for the LNG plant.

Dick Cheney created KBR, Inc., a military contracting company.  Halliburton and KBR have split, so Halliburton is trying to use that to distance itself from the case against KBR…not going to work.  In 2009, KBR and Halliburton pleaded guilty to paying the bribes prior to 2007 in a US case, paying a $579 million fine to the US.

Every time I hear of Dick Cheney, I think of the movie, W. (pronounced “dub-ya”).  It is a great movie offering an interesting spin on the George W. Bush story.  Playing the role of Dick Cheney (great performance) is the great Richard Dreyfuss.  Not only is he quite amusing in the role, but he also bore a striking resemblance to Cheney.  Cheney is pictured above, and Dreyfuss is pictured below, playing the role of Cheney.  If you get the chance to watch W., take it.Richard Dreyfuss as Dick Cheney

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Iran Being Kept in Check?

December 2, 2010

Iran NuclearSo Iran is set to go nuclear in a couple months…for energy purposes.  Through the Wikileaks document dump, evidence of Iran’s long term plans has come to light.  According to this source, certain documents indicate Iran can produce a missile capable of reaching the US by 2015, given outside assistance.  The documents also indicate Arab states have secretly encouraged the US to strike by force, though the US has chosen to communicate concerns with Iran through diplomatic channels.

F-35Nations possibly in Iran’s crosshairs are not without defense.  We entered a $60 billion arms deal with Saudi Arabia, including up to 85 F-15 fighter jets.  The Gulf is covered.  Israel is sitting tight, as well, with 20 F-35 Lightning II stealth bombers for $2.75 billion.  That is diplomacy.  At least Arab states will be armed to advance on Iran, themselves.  Iraq has also been armed to the tune of $13 billion, but that was bound to happen to ensure its own security.  Eventually, this is going to come back to bite us.  It happened when the US sold weapons to Iraq decades ago, and it happened when the US assisted Iran with the beginning of its nuclear program.  Iran goes nuclear, and the US seals deals for about $75 billion in a matter of months—nice chunk of change.

In case diplomacy fails, someone has undertaken other missions to slow down Iran’s nuclear development.  A very sophisticated worm, called “Stuxnet,” moved through computers until it arrived at computers within the nuclear facility.  “Shall we play a game?”  The worm did not take the facility offline; it merely slowed production to a crawl, as the worm produced inexplicable data inconsistencies through equipment malfunction for a period of months.  The software clearly targeted Iran nuclear facilities, leaving to question “whodunnit?”  It is believed a consortium of private interests from the west (a.k.a. here) carried it out, considering the many different angles the worm covered, such as apparent familiarity with the different hardware encountered in the facility.

Mossad BriefcaseOther methods include attempting to take out the scientists, themselves.  Assailants on motorcycles attached bombs to cars belonging to two scientists as they commuted to work separately.  One was killed, and the other was injured.  This resulted in Iran beefing up security for its nuclear staff.  Iran openly blamed western and Israeli forces of carrying out the attack.  Lately, a British newspaper (the Independent) ran a story indicating obvious involvement by the Mossad (Israel), MI6 (UK) and the CIA (US).  The CIA is fully capable of terrorism (Khaled al-Masri), and Israeli forces are certainly forces to be reckoned with, being no strangers to assassination.  My first thought is Ziva David from NCIS.  The Mossad’s tactics, combined with Britain’s admission of using “intelligence-led approaches,” and Arab states’ encouraging involvement of the US do make for interesting discussions.

North KoreaWith its nuclear facility fueled by Russia (and missiles supplied by North Korea using Russian technology), Iran has overcome tremendous obstacles in pursuing its nuclear goals.  This indicates halting the program will require drastic action.  Use of crippling cyber worms and the picking off of staff one-by-one or two-by-two will do nothing more than make Iran more determined to accomplish its goal, extending its hitlist in the process.

The Wiki has Leaked Again

November 30, 2010

Wikileaks LogoWikileaks has released its latest batch of files. However, these files are unlike those previously released. These files were gained from leaked internal communications regarding diplomatic relations with other countries. This means the files contain what leaders of Country A really think of Country B.  Some of these files are recent, but they are supposed to date all the way back to 1966, in some cases.  US Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton, has been running around frantic trying to sweet-talk countries whose integrity may be compromised.  Prior to the release, Wikileaks was hacked, resulting in users losing access to part of the Web site.  As a fail-safe, copies of the files were sent to several major newspapers, including the UK’s Guardian.  The New York Times was supposed to receive the files in advance, but Wikileaks founder, Julian Assange, did not send the NYT copies…it had to request the files from the Guardian.

The files are out, and the collection (so far) is available for your viewing pleasure at this location.  The number of files available is, supposedly, to reach 251,287.  If the page does not appear, refresh the page until it does.

I have cruised some files to see how bad they are…how can anyone interested in conspiracy theories resist such a temptation?  And who does not want to know such priceless tidbits as the reason behind Iran’s denying the US women’s badminton team visitor visas in 2009?  By the by, Iran denied the visas because the US announced the arrival before Iran wanted them to.  Iran wanted to control the media coverage because officials did not want Iranians to show up, en masse, and display American flags and such in support of the American team…not very surprising.

Dubai Knowledge VillageAnother interesting bit is the University of Connecticut almost established a campus in Dubai in 2007.  However, plans were halted when it came about that United Arab Emirates (UAE) regulations would have prohibited entry into Dubai by citizens of Israel.  Though the University of Connecticut did not make it, the US does have representation in the Dubai Knowledge Village.

More communications from 2007 bring Israel into the mix.  Mainly, their interests in changing the regime presiding over Iran.  They planned to do this through their “Five Pillar System.”  One of these pillars is “Sanctioning.”  Israel said sanctioning was the most effective method, at the time, bringing three Iranian banks to their fiscal knees…sounds like a vaguely familiar strategy where banks are concerned.  The current President of Iran (both now and at the time of document creation) is Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.  He could have been voted out of office in 2009, but he won amidst claims of fixed votes.  Protests have continued, and some have ended violently thanks to the Basij, a volunteer Iranian militia.  One such case is that of Neda Agha-Soltan (NSFW, depending whether you watch the video or not).

Julian AssangeThere are supposed to be files revealing how US officials feel about other world officials, so I am going to wait until the entire collection is online before searching for those documents.  Apparently, the US says India is a “self-appointed frontrunner” for a UNSC seat…but India self-appoints itself as a lot of things, including being congruent to China on many levels (this occurred during Copenhagen Agreement talks).  US officials say they are currently looking into possible criminal charges for Wikileaks founder, Julian Assange.  However, the search for a basis on which to arrest him does not look hopeful.

The Wikileak Follow-up

November 9, 2010

Wikileaks has released the collection of secret documents from the War in Iraq.  You can browse the collection here.  The first link leads to a page linked to a Youtube video.  It is an interesting watch, featuring commentary by Daniel Ellsberg, the Vietnam whistleblower.  US Defense Secretary, Robert Gates, said the information released “may well damage our relationships and reputation in that key part of the world.”

I have browsed a bit, and I have determined it is a terrible way to waste time…unless you are extremely vigilant in researching those matters.  I figure if anything of conspiracy-related interest is in the files, someone else can log the hours and get the glory for pointing it out.  There are gaps of information, which make it difficult to understand at times.  The gaps do not render descriptions illegible, but they come close in some reports.  It is interesting to read the reports of confiscated weapons and such—routine traffic stops were a bit different over there than on the latest “Cops” rerun.

Wikileaks…Double-Edged Sword

October 18, 2010

Wikileaks LogoSo wikileaks.org is about to blow the whistle on US activity overseas, once again.  The last thing I heard out of Wikileaks was the Afghan document dump.  By the by, the documents can be found here…when Wikileaks finishes its “scheduled maintenance”…or when the founder finishes his court obligations and retires.  Wikileaks was put on the map, so to speak, when the community released a leaked video from an apache helicopter showing Reuters photojournalists being gunned down.  Needless to say, the video cast unfavorable light on certain US rules of engagement.  The video is labeled, Collateral Murder.  I wrote a more detailed blog about it last semester—it can be found here.  The soldier believed to be responsible was supposedly arrested, but (as of June, 2010) has not been charged.

Pentagon Wall PlaqueThis month, Wikileaks is about to release 400,000 documents pertaining to the US involvement in Iraq.  Naturally, the Pentagon is a little edgy about the situation.  I enjoy a whistleblower as much as the next guy, but there are certain details, contained within those documents, Wikileaks should opt to leave out—such as names of informants, as the article points out.

Hopefully, the leak will serve to expose unacceptable, immoral practices (should they exist) without rendering current acceptable procedures obsolete.  Just in case, a 120-member committee has been assembled by the US military to deal with whatever may come.  I guess we will just have to see what surfaces.