Wednesday, December 4, 2019

Ford Foundation's Ex-Prez McGeorge Bundy: Pushed For 1960's Vietnam War Escalation

Former Ford Foundation President McGeorge Bundy and LBJ
During the 1960's most New Left Movement people in the United States protested against the Democratic Johnson administration's policy of escalating U.S. military intervention in Vietnam, following the November 22, 1963 elimination of JFK in Dallas, Texas. Yet between 1966 and 1979, the president of the U.S. power elite's multi-billion dollar corporate tax-exempted Ford Foundation (that has funded many tax-exempt liberal-left NGOs in 21st-century with "charitable grants"), the now-deceased McGeorge Bundy, was one of the Democratic Johnson administration officials responsible for the 1965 escalation of U.S. military intervention in Vietnam. As University of Kentucky Alumni Professor of History George C. Herring noted in his 1994 University of Texas Press book, LBJ and Vietnam: A Different Kind of War:

"...LBJ inherited...McGeorge Bundy special assistant for national security affairs with an office in the White House basement...Bundy had carved out a position in the Kennedy White House...He was usually the first to see Johnson on an issue and the last one to see him before a decision was made. During the months when the commitment in Vietnam was steadily escalating, Bundy and [then-Secretary of Defense Robert] McNamara were the key figures. The national security adviser was in Vietnam...on February 7, 1965 and he came back a firm advocate of escalation...Through the end of 1965...he was at the center of Vietnam policy making...

"Known around Washington as the `awesome foursome.' [Democratic U.S. President Lyndon] Johnson, Bundy, McNamara, and [former Rockefeller Foundation President and then-Secretary of State Dean] Rusk...began to meet informally for lunch at the White House in 1964, usually on Tuesday. The `Tuesday Lunch'...evolved into the primary instrument for management of the Vietnam War...At the top, the `awesome foursome' continued  throughout 1965 to run the war...The Tuesday lunch continued to be the primary means for making major wartime decisions. It stayed small, although Press Secretary [and Schumann Media Center foundation president and Democracy Now! show funder] Bill Moyers and Director of Central Intelligence Adm. William Raborn were added. Over lunch in the White House the president and his top advisers approved bombing targets, discussed force increases...."

The 1999 HarperCollins book by Richard H. Shultz Jr., titled The Secret War Against Hanoi, also contains a reference to the historical role that former Ford Foundation president Bundy played in pushing for an escalation of U.S. military intervention in the 1960's:

"McGeorge Bundy was Kennedy's special assistant for national security affairs. Bundy would chair the 303 Committee,whose jurisdiction came to include all U.S. covert operations, including those directed against North Vietnam by the CIA and the military...The 303 Committee was assigned responsibility for White House control of covert action, including paramilitary operations. Its jurisdiction came to include all important covert operations worldwide. The 303 Committee had responsibility for the CIA's 1961-1963 operations against North Vietnam. In 1964, military-directed covert action against North Vietnam would become one of its principal accounts. Members of the committee included McGeorge Bundy, the national security adviser...Bundy chaired the committee...OPLAN 34A was to begin--as a one-year program of operations, divided into three escalating, 4-month phases...In mid-January of 1964, Lyndon Johnson approved the...Bundy recommendations...MacBundy...wanted the squeeze put on Hanoi..."
Yet in his 2002 book, titled Secrets: A Memoir of Vietnam and the Pentagon Papers, Daniel Ellsberg recalled:

"[In May 1971] I took the shuttle to go to a lecture at the Council on Foreign Relations by McGeorge Bundy...Someone said it was his bid to be considered for secretary of state in the next Democratic administration, after he left the Ford Foundation...I listened to Bundy iin New York, saying there had been `no intent to mislead Congress' in connection with the passage of the Tonkin Gulf Resolution; the resolution `was not meant to be (in Nicholas Katzenbach's phrase in 1967) a `functional equivalent of a declaration of war.'..."
"It was a surreal be sitting in a room surrounded by my fellow war criminals, listening to Johnson's assistant for national security [and then-Ford Foundation president] tell lies about the war...On January 27 [1965] though I didn't know it at the time, McNamara and [later Ford Foundation president] McGeorge Bundy argued forcefully to the president that the time had come `to use our military power in the Far East and to force a change of Communist policy.'...ON January 28 [1965] De Soto patrols, with the mission of provoking an attack, were ordered back into the Tonkin Gulf for the first time in five months. Naval retaliatory forces were to be in position before the patrols commenced on February 3 [1965]..."

Friday, November 29, 2019

Are U.S. Universities Helping DARPA Develop Weapons For Pentagon?--Conclusion

After the name of the Pentagon's Advanced Research Projects Agency [ARPA] was changed to "Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency" [DARPA] in 1973, DARPA continued to develop new weapons and new weapons technology for the U.S. permanent war machine to utilize in its post-1973 overt military actions and interventions in foreign countries like Lebanon, Grenada, Panama, Iraq, Sudan, Yugoslavia, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Libya, Yemen and Syria. As Annie Jacobsen observed in her 2015 book, The Pentagon's Brain: An Uncensored History of DARPA, America's Top Secret Military Research Agency:

"...In 1979 DARPA's Tactical Technology Office began work on a highly classified program to build `high-stealth aircraft.'...DARPA's early efforts with mini-drones...played a major role in advancing laser-guided weapons technology--a fact largely underreported in military history books...

"...DARPA initiated a new weapons program called Assault Breaker...Assault Breaker would one day allow commanders to precisely strike targets--even moving targets--deeply behind enemy lines...In 1977...DARPA's budget was doubled...DARPA's highly classified...program, including stealth, advanced sensors, laser-guided munitions, and drones were being pursued. Soon Assault Breaker technology would be battle ready...

"...On January 16, 1991...CNN war correspondents were reporting from Baghdad, Iraq...Tomahawk land attack missiles, the engines of which were created by DARPA, and F-117A stealth fighter aircraft, also a DARPA-born program, were on their way to destroy parts of the city...The F-117A was invisible to radar. DARPA's stealth technology program had created a revolution in warfare.

'Ten additional F-117As were on their way to drop bombs on targets in downtown Baghdad...There were other DARPA systems flying over Iraq...Drones played a prominent role...Remotely piloted vehicles, small and large, collected mapping information that helped steer Tomahawks to their targets. Some 522 drone sorties were flown.., many of them based on DARPA technology...The drones relayed back the information, which was then used to take-out the targets...

"In the second year [2004] of the Iraq war, DARPA launched its Urban Operations Program, the largest and most expensive of the 21st century as of 2014...DARPA partnered with the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (NGA), a dual combat suupport and intelligence agency...The majority of its [the NGA's] operations are born classified...The mapping efforts...folded into a DARPA program called Heterogeneous Urban Reconnaissance, Surveillance and Target Acquisition, or HURT. Entire foreign civilian populations and their living spaces would be surveyed, observed, and scrutinized by the U.S. military.., so that individual people--insurgents--could be targeted, then captured or killed.

"...Many details of the program remain classified...The Nexus 7 program, whose 2015 budget was classified, monitors social media networks. How Nexus 7 is used in the United States is classified, and DARPA declined to answer general questions...

"DARPA's vast weapon systems of the future will involve an entire army of drones...By March 1999, with help from MIT's Lincoln Laboratory, DARPA finally had its first-generation micro air vehicle to fly reconnaissance missions...

"Starting in 2013, DARPA teamed up with the White House on the BRAIN (Brain Research through Advancing Innovative Neurotechnologies) initiative...What is DARPA's primary goal in researching the brain?...DARPA prepares vast weapons systems of the future. So what are the classified brain programs really for?...The technologies DARPA is pursuing in its brain and prosthetics programs have dual use in DARPA's efforts to engineer hunter-killer robots. Coupled with the quest for artificial intelligence, all this might explain why DARPA is so focused on looking inside people's brains...DARPA's...programs remain secret until they are unveiled on the battlefield..."

Tuesday, November 26, 2019

Are U.S. Universities Helping DARPA Develop Weapons For Pentagon?--Part 3

In her 2015 book, The Pentagon's Brain: An Uncensored History of DARPA, America's Top Secret Military Research Agency, Annie Jacobsen described some of the weapons development work that the DARPA organization, for which some U.S. professors continue to do contract  research work for in the 21st century, did when the organization was still called "ARPA," prior to 1973:

"At Fort Detrick, in Maryland, ARPA ran a toxicology branch where it worked on chemical weapons-related programs with Dr. James W. Brown, deputy chief of the crops division of the Army Chemical Corps Biological Laboratories. ARPA had Dr. Brown working on a wide variety of defoliants...The classified program would be called `anticrop warfare research.'...In the field, operational activities were to be referred to as `CDTC Task Number 20,' or `Task 20' for short...ARPA's R&D field units would be dispatched to burn down all the resulting dead trees...On November 30, 1961, President Kennedy approved the chemical defoliation program in Vietnam...Between 2.1 million and 4.8 million Vietnamese were directly exposed to Agent Orange...

"...In December 1965, the Joint Chiefs of Staff and the Secretary of Defense authorized ARPA to research and develop `forest fire as a military weapon' in Vietnam.

"The secret program, called Project EMOTE, was developed by ARPA, ostensibly to study the use of `environmental modification techniques.'...The central premise of the program was to determine how to destroy large areas of jungle growth by firestorm...Project EMOTE called for millions of gallons of Agent Orange to be sprayed in the forests as one element of the `weather modification campaign.'...ARPA's final 170-page report, originally classified secret, is kept in the Special Collections of the U.S. Department of Agriculture in Maryland...

"By the winter of keepng with the Mansfield Amendment, which required the Pentagon to research and develop programs only with a `specific military function,' the word `defense' was added to ARPA's name. From now on it would be called the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, or DARPA..."

Saturday, November 23, 2019

Are U.S. Universities Helping DARPA Develop Weapons For Pentagon?--Part 2

The DARPA organization, for which some U.S. professors continue to do contract work in the 21st-century, used to be called the ARPA [Advanced Research Projects Agency] in the late 1950's, 1960's and early 1970's. And in her 2015 book, The Pentagon's Brain: An Uncensored History of DARPA, America's Top Secret Military Research Agency, Annie Jacobsen recalled the kind of weapons that some U.S. university professors helped ARPA develop for the Pentagon during this historical period:

"...Directed energy weapons were well worth researching and developing...and ARPA moved forward with Project Seesaw--its first directed energy weapons program...ARPA's mission was and remains getting programs up and running, then transferring them over to the military service or other government agencies for field use. Project Seesaw remained in development at ARPA for 15 long years...Over the next 55 years, ARPA's directed energy weapons programs would develop and grow. The majority of them remain highly classified.

"`Directed energy is the weapon of the future,' said retired four-star General Paul F. Gorman in a 2014 interview for this book. `But that is a sensitive area and we can't get into that.'...

"In February 1958, William Godel was hired on in a key position at the newly formed Advanced Research Projects Agency...On April 12, 1961, in a memo to the president, Walt Rostow suggested `Nine Proposals for Action' in Vietnam...`Action Proposal/Number Five,' written by William Godel suggested `the sending to Vietnam of a research and development and military hardware team which would explore with General McGarr which of the various techniques and `gadgets' now available or being explored that might be relevant and useful in the Viet-nam operation.'...

"President Kennedy liked Godel's proposal...Deputy Secretary of Defense Roswell Gilpatric submitted to the president a memorandum that elaborated on `Action Proposal/Number Five.'...He proposed that ARPA establish its own research and development center in Saigon, a physical location where an ARPA field unit could develop new weapons specifically tailored to jungle-fighting needs. There would be other projects, too...These would involve sociological research programs and psychological warfare campaigns...The ARPA program would be called Project Agile...

"...On June 8, 1961, William Godel traveled to Vietnam with Project Agile's first research and development team to set up ARPA's Combat Development and Test Center [CDTC]...By August [1961], ARPA's Combat Development and Test Center was up and running with a staff of 25 Americans...ARPA's first staffers included military officers, civilian scientists, engineers, and academics...Agile's budget for its first year was $11.3 million [equivalent to around $95 million in 2019 dollars]...By the following year, Project Agile's budget would double...

"The first Project Agile aircraft introduced into the war theater was a power glider...ARPA's power glider would pave the way for...drones...The most significant weapon to emerge from the early days of Project Agile was the AR-15 semi-automatic rifle...In 1966 it was adapted for fully automatic fire and redesignated the M16 assault rifle...`The development of the M-16 would almost certainly not have come about without the existence of ARPA,' noted an unpublished internal ARPA review, written in 1974.

"...There was one weapons program--highly classified--that commanded more of Godel's attention than the others...The weapon would become known to the world as Agent Orange...Agent Orange was a hideous toxin...William Godel was in charge of running the program for ARPA..."

Thursday, November 21, 2019

Are U.S. Universities Helping DARPA Develop Weapons For Pentagon?--Part 1

Most anti-imperialist and anti-war students on U.S. university campuses, like Columbia University's campus, don't think U.S. university administrators should allow their professors to help the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency [DARPA] develop weapons for the Pentagon on their campuses in the 21st-century. Yet most U.S. university administrators still apparently allow their professors to perform research work for DARPA on their campuses in 2019.

But, as Annie Jacobsen noted in her 2015 book, The Pentagon's Brain: An Uncensored History of DARPA, America's Top Secret Military Research Agency:

"The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, or DARPA, as it is known, is the most powerful and most productive military science agency in the world. It is also one of the most secretive and, until this book, the least investigated...With an annual budget of roughly $3 billion...DARPA as an agency does not conduct scientific research. Its program managers and directors hire defense contractors, academics, and other government organizations to do the work. DARPA then facilitates the transition of its successful results to the military for use...Once ready for fielding, the resulting weapons and weapons-related systems are turned over to the Army, Navy, Air Force, and Marines, and to intelligence agencies including the CIA, NSA (National Security Agency), DIA (Defense Intelligence Agency)...

"DARPA carefully controls its public persona...The bulk of DARPA's more consequential and sometimes Orwellian programs go largely unreported...In fact DARPA's stated mission is to create weapons systems...Admirers call DARPA the Pentagon's brain. Critics call it the heart of the military-industrial complex...

"...Darpa, by its mandate, secret...In the early 1960's, during the Vietnam War, DARPA began developing unmanned aerial vehicles, or drones...The first drone...appeared on the battlefield in Afghanistan in October 2001..."

Monday, November 11, 2019

Time To Rollback U.S. Corporate Media CEO Salaries?

Discovery Inc. CEO David Zaslav: Paid $129.4 Million In 2018
Most U.S. corporate media firms generally fail to allow most anti-war and anti-imperialist U.S. working-class people the same amount of daily U.S. mass media news department coverage that they generally provide to millionaire, multi-millionaire, billionaire and multi-billionaire "entertainment" celebrities, politicians, plutocrats, jocks and upper-middle-class journalists/propagandists.  One reason might be that, under the current U.S. economic and political system, the corporate folks who are CEO's of most U.S. corporate media firms are apparently allowed by the U.S. congress to pay themselves a lot more in annual salaries each year than the annual wages that most U.S. workers are paid in the 21st-century.

In 2018, for example, the CEO of Discovery (which owns U.S. corporate television networks like the Discovery Channel, HGTV and Food Network), David Zaslav, was allowed to take home a total annual pay compensation of $129.4 million. And that same year, Walt Disney/ABC CEO Robert Iger was allowed to take home a total annual pay compensation of $65.6 million.

The CEO's of Netflix, Comcast, Activision Blizard, ATT & T, Omnicom, Facebook Inc., Viacom and Interpublic Group were also allowed by the U.S. congress to pay themselves a lot more than what you were probably able to earn in 2018. Netflix CEO Reed Hasting's total annual pay in 2018 was $36.1 million; while Comcast CEO Brian Roberts' total annual pay was $35.8 million during that same year. 

Activision Blizzard CEO Robert Kotick's 2018 total annual pay was $30.8 million; while AT & T CEO Randall Stephenson was paid $29.1 million during that same year. In addition, Omnicom CEO John Wren was paid $23.9 million in 2018 and Facebook Inc. CEO Mark Zuckerberg was paid $22.6 million during that same year.

And, finally, Viacom CEO Robert Bakish was allowed by the U.S. Congress to pay himself a total annual salary of $20 million in 2018; while Interpublic Group CEO Michael Roth was allowed to take home an annual salary of $17 million during that same year.

Thursday, October 31, 2019

Did Boston's Rich White Folks Profit From Slave Trade?

In the 21st-century some of the rich white families that still pretty much control what happens economically and politically in the City of Boston may claim that their families' wealth was not obtained, historically, by profiting from the African slave trade and the enslavement of people of African descent in the USA and elsewhere. But as Russell B. Adams Jr. recalled in his 1977 book, The Boston Money Tree:

"...Peter Faneuil, like most early Bostonians saw nothing amiss in what was later to be termed the `peculiar institution' of the South...Among the effects in Peter's estate at his death were 5 slaves...Peter Faneuil...tried his hand at the slave trade more than once...Not long before his death Faneuil sent a slaving ship, owned half by himself and one quarter each by a neighbor and the captain on an expedition to the coast of Guinea...Ship and slaves were sold at auction, a portion of the proceeds going to the estate of Peter Faneuil."

The Boston Money Tree book also observed that although "it was primarily as slave traders, not slave owners, that Bostonians were to make their mark in the history of human bondage in America," a French visitor to Boston in 1687 "had reported that scarcely any Boston household of consequences didn't have at least one slave..."

According to the same book:

"...Boston's enterprising merchants, always on the lookout for commodities to serve their markets, trading slaves...It took little imagination for these...traders to sail off to Guinea with cargoes of rum to be exchanged for Negroes who were then exchanged for more sugar cane to be turned into more rum...Thomas Amory, one Boston merchant...was big in the slave trade and...succeeded in helping to found one of the city's latter-day first families."