Last week we heard Peter Dale Scott, former Canadian diplomat and University of California at Berkeley Professor, and author of Drugs, Oil, and War (2005), The Road to 9/11: Wealth, Empire, and the Future of America (2007), The War Conspiracy: JFK, 9/11 and the Deep Politics of War (2008), talk with Paul Jay of The Real News in the first and second parts of a multipart series about the corrupted mindset in Washington that chooses who becomes president, and about the war machine that co-opted Obama into his escalation of a drug-corrupted war in Afghanistan.
Scott also talked about an “iceberg” analogy of US politics in which which “the visible part, the public politics, or, if you like, what goes on in the public state, is only a small percentage of the totality of what’s going on, a lot of this is not subject to the restraints of the Constitution at all”
Here in part 3 of the series Scott again talks with Jay, this time about something much more sinister that permeates American political reality penetrating and corrupting much deeper than the normal military-industrial complex we’ve read about in the past – about the fact that the way to succeed in Washington has become to support the next use of the war machine to attack its next chosen target – about privatized intelligence services creating for profit wars, representing a private business that has become a form of permanent government – and concludes that the only way he can see out of the mire is that “We have to pull back from the two-party system and start a new kind of politics. We have to essentially build a new kind of civil society in America. And this is not easy, and I’m not confident that it will happen. The most likely thing to happen is that America will just go into decline from overextension the way that Britain went into decline from overextension before it“.
To give you an example of how powerful they are, when it was clear that the intelligence about Iraq [had] been skewed and we went in because of weapons of mass destruction that weren’t there. And they commissioned (Science Applications International Corporation) SAIC to investigate what went wrong. And SAIC came up with a report that didn’t mention that some of the key people who had been saying that Saddam had weapons of mass destruction had been saying that it would be necessary to deal with him militarily were people who were in fact working for SAIC. So when you give a private corporation the job of seeing whether we should go to war against a country, and then you give that same private corporation the job of finding out why false information was given, you can see that there has been a very, very deep corruption of the process of gathering and analyzing intelligence in Washington and SAIC.
JAY: Who are some of the individuals you referring to?
SCOTT: If you don’t mind, I’m going to read from an article by Donald Barlett that you already quoted from. This was David Kay, who was on the committee, and this is what he said in 1998 to the Senate Armed Services Committee, that Saddam Hussein, quote, “remains in power with weapons of mass destruction,” and that, quote, “military action is needed.” Wayne Downing, a retired general and proselytized for an invasion of Iraq, stating that the Iraqis, quote, “are ready to take the war … overseas. They would use whatever means they have to attack us.” Both of these men, David Kay and Wayne Downing, worked for SAIC. And so a decent analysis of what went wrong would have pointed to the fact that we were relying on people who had, really, a profit motive. I’m not saying that they did all of this thinking only of profit; I’m saying that they were totally part of this dominance mindset that I’m talking about, and they know that the way to succeed in Washington is to support the next target, the policy for the next use of the war machine.
JAY: Now, Robert Gates, Obama’s secretary of defense, used to be part of SAIC as well. Is that true?
SCOTT: Was on the board of directors of SAIC, yes. And, you know, for that matter, Mike McConnell was with Booz Allen Hamilton.
JAY: So, given the Obama administration, again, promises of a new mindset, has the role of SAIC and these kinds of companies changed in any way?
SCOTT: No. See, this is why I talk about deep politics.
Real News Network – February 04, 2010
Full Transcript here
New mindset for US foreign policy? Pt.3
Scott: The military-industrial-counterterrorism complex is beyond Eisenhower’s worst nightmare