The Spiral of Despair 189

If somebody wishes to be a ghazi, I should much prefer them to do it in Tikrit rather than in Peterborough or Penicuik. To that extent I agree with Bob Quick. The periodic media scares about Sunni families going to Syria to “join ISIS” are very peculiar. We appear, with no public debate, to have adopted a de facto system of exit visas. Ronald Reagan famously said to Mikhail Gorbachev that we never had to lock our people in. It seems that now in the UK we do.

We have companies that recruit and control active armies of mercenaries, which are responsible for thousands of deaths overseas. I detest the violence of “ISIS” but it is not morally different from Executive Outcomes machine gunning villages from helicopters in Angola or from Aegis killing random vehicle occupants in Iraq who happened to be near their convoys. Yet Tony Buckingham and Tim Spicer became extremely rich after founding their careers on the latter killings, and now are respected figures in the London establishment. Apparently killing for money is good; only killing for religion is bad.

Nor is there any official objection to the young Britons who go to Israel to fight with the IDF, and were involved in the war crimes that last year killed hundreds upon hundreds of little Palestinian children.

Terrorism is appalling. The desire by some of the inhabitants of the Middle East to establish a Caliphate run on what they interpret as theological lines is a legitimate desire, if that is the kind of society people want. We devastated Iraq: we bombed Iraq into a failed state. We we were part of the nexus of interests that conspired to arm and facilitate armed insurrection in Syria. In the Blairite creed, we apparently believed that unleashing death, devastation and destruction of physical infrastructure and social institutions, would result in an embrace of democracy and western values by the people.

You would have to be mad to believe that, but it appears to remain the guiding principle of western foreign policy.

Even the remotest claim to wisdom would lead to the embrace of two principles. The first is that we cannot dictate how societies very different to our own ought to organise themselves. We can try to encourage a dialogue leading to respect of universal human rights, and hope for gradual improvement in that direction. But the second lesson is stop bombing. It is plainly counter-productive.

Today the BBC is wall to wall 7/7 commemoration. The coverage keeps focusing on military uniforms, even though the military were in no capacity whatsoever involved in 7/7. It is inappropriate militarism, just as we saw with the return of the bodies of the Tunisian victims.

There is an elephant in the room. Nobody is mentioning the starkly obvious truth. If we had not invaded Iraq, 7/7 would never have happened. Let me say it again, because it is not sayable within the corporate media and establishment consensus. If we had not invaded Iraq, 7/7 would never have happened.

Our response to “Isis” illustrates that we have become no more sophisticated than the Victorian portrayal of the “Mad Mahdi”. The difference is that, due to globalisation, we cannot just pound foreign lands into submission without provoking the blowback of terrorism elsewhere. I detest terrorism and do not believe random killing of civilians can ever be justified. But it is not an inexplicable manifestation of evil. We are causing it.

It is a fact that ISIS was never implicated in any terrorist activity in the UK before we started bombing ISIS in Iraq. We created the appalling mess in Iraq and Syria. By bombing we continually make it worse. It will take some time for the Middle East to recover from the profound effects of the Western wars against Muslim countries at the beginning of the 21st Century. Our response to the provocation of Bin Laden has been so stupid as to attain most of his goals for him. We have of course also attained most of the goals of the armaments and security state industries, which have sucked wealth from the rest of us. A spiral of despair for us has made billions for them. When a policy is as obviously counter-productive as our continual Middle Eastern wars, then ask cui bono?

I am not claiming that if we stop bombing then terrorism will stop instantly. There will be a lag effect. And in even the most benign scenario, Iraq and Syria will take decades to normalise. That is our fault, but we can best now help by staying well away.

189 thoughts on “The Spiral of Despair

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  • Becky Cohen

    I’ve never really understood why instead of sending whole armies to carpet bomb huge swathes of territory, mostly missing actual terrorists and killing mostly innocent civilians in the process, governments don’t simply contract the task out to a ‘business’ organisation like the mafia who will bump off the ringleaders without creating martyrs simply because they made the deaths look like an accident?

  • lysias

    governments don’t simply contract the task out to a ‘business’ organisation like the mafia who will bump off the ringleaders without creating martyrs simply because they made the deaths look like an accident?

    The CIA and other security services have long been in the business of doing precisely that.

  • ------------·´`·.¸¸.¸¸.··.¸¸Node


    Here’s how Wikipedia describes “friendly fire” …..

    “Friendly fire is an attack by a military force on friendly forces while attempting to attack the enemy, either by misidentifying the target as hostile, or due to errors or inaccuracy.”

    …. in other words “accidental”.

    The attack on USS Liberty was not a friendly fire incident – it was not accidental.

    In 2003, an independent commission of highly regarded experts was created to look into the matter. The Commission consisted of Admiral Thomas H. Moorer, United States Navy (Ret.), Former Chairman, Joint Chiefs of Staff; General Raymond G. Davis, United States Marine Corps, (MOH), Former Assistant Commandant of The Marine Corps; Rear Admiral Merlin Staring, United States Navy (Ret.), Former Judge Advocate General Of The Navy; and Ambassador James Akins (Ret.), Former United States Ambassador to Saudi Arabia.

    Here are 4 of the 12 points conclusions arrived at by The “Moorer Commission”

    “1. That on June 8, 1967, after eight hours of aerial surveillance, Israel launched a two-hour air and naval attack against USS Liberty, the world’s most sophisticated intelligence ship, inflicting 34 dead and 173 wounded American servicemen (a casualty rate of seventy percent, in a crew of 294);”

    “4. That there is compelling evidence that Israel’s attack was a deliberate attempt to destroy an American ship and kill her entire crew; evidence of such intent is supported by statements from Secretary of State Dean Rusk, Undersecretary of State George Ball, former CIA director Richard Helms, former NSA directors Lieutenant General William Odom, USA (Ret.), Admiral Bobby Ray Inman, USN (Ret.), and Marshal Carter; former NSA deputy directors Oliver Kirby and Major General John Morrison, USAF (Ret.); and former Ambassador Dwight Porter, U.S. Ambassador to Lebanon in 1967;”

    “5. That in attacking USS Liberty, Israel committed acts of murder against American servicemen and an act of war against the United States;”

    “8. That due to the influence of Israel’s powerful supporters in the United States, the White House deliberately covered up the facts of this attack from the American people;”

    [ Mod: This had been caught in the spam-filter ]

  • Resident Dissident


    I’m afraid having seen a little bit of politicians and the civil service I tend towards the “cock up” rather than the conspiracy theory of government.

  • Resident Dissident

    “The CIA and other security services have long been in the business of doing precisely that.”

    Put weren’t they rather incompetent if Castro was anything to go by – the real experts at regime change were of course the KGB.

  • ------------·´`·.¸¸.¸¸.··.¸¸Node


    My reply to you has disappeared without trace. No doubt it will re-appear from the spam filter in due course.

  • Mary

    7 July London attacks

    Seeing isn’t believing
    A year on from 7/7, wild rumours are circulating about who planted the bombs and why. Some people even claim this picture of the four bombers was faked. Mark Honigsbaum, who accidentally triggered at least one of the conspiracy theories, investigates
    27 June 2006


    I had forgotten a lot of this detail including Bush’s visit to London on the following day after the G8 finished but remembered the London Olympics bid was chosen on the day before. A series of important events all colliding!

  • Becky Cohen

    I don’t think “we” invaded Iraq. After all, Tony Blair made the unilateral decision to go to war without asking the permission of the electorate.

  • RobG

    Lysias, talking of Greenwald and the Intercept, I’d like to share this story with other readers because it is quite remarkable…

    Do you lot read about any of this in the British media?

    Bernie Sanders may well become the first crowd-funded President of the United States.

    Hilary and all the rest of them are so corrupt that Bernie should walk this.

    If it weren’t for the massive propaganda machine known as the MSM.

  • Mary

    And we never got a public inquiry.

    A public enquiry for 7/7: One year on the need is still as great
    July 7, 2006

    To: The British Government

    We, the British Public, call for a fully comprehensive Public Inquiry into the July 7th 2005 London Bombings.

    Only this can provide us with the information we need as to what actually happened, how it happened and why it happened so that we will be better prepared to prevent such a tragedy happening again.

    We, the Public were attacked. We, the Public have questions. We, the Public want our questions answered, independently, transparently and honestly.


    To sign the petition go here

    To read more from one of the survivors go here

  • John Goss

    “I don’t think “we” invaded Iraq. After all, Tony Blair made the unilateral decision to go to war without asking the permission of the electorate.”

    Quite right Becky. Thanks. He was a dictator. Clare Short talked about his diktats in cabinet meetings. Pity she went along with his war. He offered her I think some kind of role in determining the ‘roadmap’ to the Middle East. What as bullshitter Tony Blair was and is!

  • Mary

    Welcome back John. I was wondering if you were OK or whether you were on your travels. Did you hear about the Elbit protests?

    Did you mean the link to the petition? Petition site kaput.

    Interesting going back through the archives and to see what Craig was having to deal with. For instance resisting the FCO demands to remove material etc.

  • John Goss

    Mary, yes the pettion.

    “To sign the petition go here

    To read more from one of the survivors go here”

    I’ve not been away. I try to keep up but busy with family issues at the moment, in a positive way.

  • Ben

    “Bernie Sanders may well become the first crowd-funded President of the United States.”

    Let us not get too excited. I remember similar jubilation around 2007. If he should win the WH he is part of the problem. If he’s for real the best he can do is the elections of 1956 and 1972. McGovern and Stevenson were real so they had no chance.

  • Ben

    Oh? JFK? Well his was a compromised position largely due to his father’s depression era business interests. They probably thought the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree and we DO have some leverage, so let it go. We can control him. They were largely wrong on that assessment and we know what becomes of loose cannons….overboard !

  • Mark Golding

    7 Jul, 2015 – 1:19 pm – Thank-you. Mohammed Sidique Khan visited Israel for an intelligence briefing. A reliable source admits he is still alive today.

  • glenn

    @Ruth: “Making videos could well have been part of the package. I believe there are many documented links of the ‘terrorists’ to the intelligence services. Or the videos have been edited and may well be fakes. How many of Bin Laden were faked?

    We all ought to know how little our local copper, let alone the State Security, should be trusted. If some SS officer came along and asked you to record a video confessing in advance, say, to bank robbery, murder, sedition or whatever – wouldn’t you be just a bit hesitant? The term “Patsy” must never have occurred.

    False Flag enthusiasts for the 7/7 bombings haven’t convinced me, FWIW (and I did look into this for some time). Either the Iraq invasion invited “blowback”, in the form of terrorism, or our bombing of the third world is inconsequential to us – requiring neither justification or guarding against. The FF’ers can’t have it all ways.

    Sometimes, terrorism actually is terrorism. I didn’t hear too many “False flag!” calls while the IRA was in full flight. Often, their actions were not given “the oxygen of publicity”, almost encouraging them to do something outrageous enough to justify a mention.

    Choose your FF calls very carefully, and don’t rush with the crowd. (Particularly not with scum and riff-raff like that Spivey moron and his acolytes.)

  • Hugh Mayle

    Isis is in fact being supported by Western governments via Saudi Arabia and Turkey. It’s a classic case of “create the problem and then sell the solution”.

  • giyane


    “I’d like to add that we – USA/UK – helped to create Islamism/Jihadism as a military/political force”

    I am in Kurdistan and we all know that what you say is correct. The Muslim Brotherhood was created by UKIS. Saudi Takfirism by the same.

    You cannot control a powerful country like Kurdistan in WW1 with a couple of bi-planes, you need the ambitious and devious people in that region to do your dirty work for you.

    Here are the world’s most ambitious and devious people doing the dirty work of the USUKIS in Syria. Every body knows that, even though the political class as an entity signed for IS to attack Mosul in Jordan, and they provide safe passage to Mosul through Kurdistan for UK freaks with huge black beards on their way to ISIS, who marrived on the same plane as us from Birmingham.

    In terms of international terrorism, it s not just an elephant, but a vast sea of elephant poo overflowing the room.

    Hugh Mayle:

    “Isis is in fact being supported by Western governments via Saudi Arabia and Turkey. It’s a classic case of “create the problem and then sell the solution”.”

    Yes that’s all politicians know how to do: create crises so that they can wade in and solve the problems of their own creation. Without politicians the world would very soon rectify itself.

  • giyane

    Anon1 is correct. It is our political class consisting of nominal Christians and the Middle-Eastern political class consisting of nominal Muslims, working for their own benefit against the actual Christians and Muslims.


    Saudi jets piloted by Israeli pilots bombing Yemen.

  • giyane

    Craig Murray, a Nabisco Employee

    “Craig is full of Bull Biscuit. 911 or 7-7 attacks were designed to be happened so they could have legit covers/pretext for their barbarous bombings against Iraqis, Afghanis, and anywhere else.

    Could someone tell me whom I should have believed into the 7-7 attackers or this Craig Murrary who “Had” believed into Toni bLIAR’s fairy tales (of 7-7 London Tube attacks)?

    Mr. Murray, would you please drop your mask and entertain us who’s been paying you?”


    The deviosity required to become a UK Ambassador = the deviosity to speak truth against power = the deviosity to slander the whistleblowers. And in equal measure I have the deviosity to say to you that if you have deviously obtained evidence about Mr Murray you should be able to cite your evidence and means of obtaining it before anyone will listen to you.

    Craig toes various totally untrue lines. I was with the sister of one of those who were injured at the time of 7/7. The injuries were genuine in this totally fabricated false flag event. Then we get into the Assange dilemma of why 9/11 didn’t feature in wikileaks.

    We are talking about a vast conspiracy of the corporate/military/political classes against us the people. Lifting one veil only exposes another veil. I listened to a Radio 4 program about Egypt recently about Egyptian factories, all owned by military individuals, and international shipping going through the canal, are dumping huge quantities of chemicals , including phosphates and other toxic components into Egyptian fresh and salt waters

    We are not talking about one guy stroking a Persian cat aka James Bond. we are talking about huge capitalist conspiracy. All those years of sacrifice to get power into the hands of working people were dumped by Mrs Thatcher, after she climbed the slippery pole of power. the same is being repeated the world over all the time. Who gets to the top likes to keep the pole slippy underneath them.

    but in the next life, they are going to get burning steam ad infinitum and twisted grins from roasted skins.

  • Suhayl Saadi

    Giyane at 6:51am today, that’s really interesting, both that you’re in Kurdistan and also what you say re. ISIS et al. Thanks.

  • giyane

    Mark Golding

    The lesson is that if you know anything you’re not supposed to know, you’re far safer blogging it like Craig does close to the beach in shallow water, rather than getting in leaky dingy with MI5. Too many people have got into leaky boats with unscupulous criminal gangsters like MI5/6. Power is a fatal attraction not unlike bright lights to flies.

  • giyane


    My wife is Kurdish. IS is another USUK push, like Israel itself, into the heart of the Middle-East. Daish are fed high daily doses of Israeli amphetamines in order to fight. The possy of Daish at Sulaimaniyah airport would look like normal inner city druggies to you or I. A camaraderie of addicts living side by side with normal life. Obviously there is hard core of Saddam-trained military and Muslims brain-washed by the chance to raise their self-esteem over other Muslims.

  • Mary

    Jonathan Cook. State broadcaster ordered to call Islamic State Daesh.

    If Daesh, why not Zionist Occupation Forces?
    July 8, 2015

    There’s something truly disturbing about the fact that British prime minister David Cameron’s efforts to decide how the media refer to Islamic State are being taken seriously. So seriously, in fact, that 120 MPs have backed the idea that the BBC should not use the name Islamic State and refer to the group by the Arabic acronym “Daesh” instead. Cameron’s argument is that Islamic State is neither Islamic nor a state.

    The coverage has implied that the BBC is taking a brave editorial stand and refusing to kowtow to Cameron’s diktat. But there are already signs that the BBC may capitulate. In a statement, the BBC said: “We call the group by the name it uses itself, and regularly review our approach. We also use additional descriptions to help make it clear we are referring to the group as they refer to themselves, such as ‘so-called Islamic State’.”

    Let’s put this debate in a little perspective. The Israeli army calls itself the “Israel Defence Forces”, or “IDF” for short. And yet it is not “Israeli” in the sense that it does not represent all Israelis, especially the fifth of the population who are Palestinian, and it is not a defence force because its primary role is to enforce a belligerent occupation of Palestinians. So according to Cameron’s logic, he and the media should be referring to it as the “Zionist Occupation Forces”. I wonder if he can get a 120 MPs to sign up to that idea.


    He suggests the Tories could be referred to as the Revolutionary Neoliberal Party.

  • YouKnowMyName (snow in summer!)

    sorry, although shocking, that was the wrong link – it should’ve been
    The UK information commissioner has actually asked a UK police force to supply some information about which journalists they were snooping on. . .

    More digital spiral of despair the US EFF (Electronic Freedom Foundation) is wading in to the controversy over the 415 gigabyte leak of attack-malware-Wassenaar-weapons from a famous developer of RATs (Remote Access Trojans), for the next week or so – that means that criminals have access to state level malware, Patch your Adobe Flash now! or dump-it

    more on this last story here in fact everywhere seems to have been ‘attacked’ by RATs except UK as this story confirms

    or a scientific point of view

  • Mark Golding

    True Giyane, the face of MI5 is that of a gentleman albeit quite content to plant fake press reports perfected long ago when efforts were made to ‘force entry’ the Roosevelt administration in the Second World War; and by all means possible, in defence of the realm of course while cutting a deal consistent with the establishments policy of ‘neither confirm nor deny(NCND).

    With luck a few small number of officers with military back-grounds are prepared to swim with the tide as unsung proponents of principal.

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