Thursday, September 03, 2009

NPR Do Love It Some CIA

NPR achieved quite a feat Thursday morning: without even mentioning the CIA, NPR aired two CIA-friendly stories. First, NPR featured rehabbed heroin addict, author, filmmaker, and macho-schmaltz purveyor Richard Farrell imagining that his son's going to Afghanistan as a soldier is directly related to his own heroin addiction in the 80's:
"I'm deeply troubled, wondering if my son will be trying to wipe out the crop that nearly killed me 22 years ago. Back then, I was an involuntary customer who helped create a demand for the drug. I was the last link in a system that produced and distributed heroin, the very system my son William will be trying to break."
What! is the US military leading a campaign against the CIA and its mujahadeen chums from the 80's? Though the Taliban is now profiting from the heroin trade, poor Farrell is very mixed up indeed, demonstrating a complete lack of awareness that heroin production was virtually zero under the Taliban, and only spiked dramatically under US occupation. As Alfred McCoy has documented, the CIA has been at the nexus of the Heroin trade for a long time. Farrell's ignorance may be genuine, but NPR's spotlighting of this mangled history is inexcusable.

For its second non-CIA, CIA story, NPR turned to "Vahid FBI instructor at West Point's Combating Terrorism Center" who is on to "educate" us about the Haqqani Network and its relation to the Taliban. He describes how the Haqqani network extremely brutal, even more violent than the regular Taliban. He explains that what sets the Haqqani Network apart is its "willingness to use foreigners and to cooperate with international jihadists organizations in Afghanistan." What Brown and NPR purposely fail to mention is that the proud father of the Haqqani Network is the CIA. Anand Gopal of the Christian Science Monitor has reported on this sordid lineage. Brown also conveniently omits that fact that the CIA strategy in the 80s, like Haqqani's, was to issue an open invite to the most violent and ruthless international jihadists it could find.

Not bad for a non-CIA infiltrated (hee, hee!) news organization - not one, but two phony history features that cover-up CIA criminality in one morning news show.

The Haqqani story also had a real laugher embedded in it. Brown, explaining the Taliban's reluctance to accept foreigners states, "Mullah Omar and the Taliban are very careful to portray their movement as an Afghan nationalist movement." To which Montagne chimes in, "Because in fact Afghans in general don't like what they call foreigners, as in al-Qaeda foreigners." Hmmm, I wonder what other foreigners Afghans aren't so crazy about?


WarOnWarOff said...

Air America (good ol' CIA) tried to recruit my father serving in Nam to fly "sticky white packages" out of the Golden Triangle for thousands of dollars a year.

He decided there was something wrong with that, and refused.

But all that sordid business is down the memory hole at NPR!

BTW, I don't listen to their crap at all anymore, but was wondering if they've even *mentioned* that "contractors gone wild" story that Mother Jones covered? Hmmmmm?

larry, dfh said...

And people think you're crazy if you talk about poppies in Afghanistan. Not to mention all the Hasheesh. Hey, it's really the only explanation that makes sense to me.
But I think it's more involved than just the poppies in Afghanistan, because they need to be processed. That traditionally used to be done in Marseilles. Hey, now who helped overthrow Aristide in Haiti, besides colin powell? Why, the French, of course. Some freedom that.

Porter Melmoth said...

We are grateful, Myt, for your enlightening expose on this subject.

These are perfect examples of NPR absolutism where propaganda is concerned. Strike the right emotional chords with someone like Farrell, and add the 'even worse than the Taliban' factor, and you've got one really sexy strike-the-fear-in-'em package that isn't flawed like a fake WMD specter.

You have to hand it to NPR though, their sneakiness and subversion, whether CIA-directed or home-cooked, is reaching new levels of sophistication. At least Fox News is pretty obvious with their Murdochian imperatives, while NPR's tactics are constantly unforgivable.

Porter Melmoth said...

Indeed, the poppy industry, from Afghan field to syringe into vein is one of the great examples of global corporate-ism. A truly international cooperative effort, it takes big money to get product to consumer. It's a well-oiled machine that knows what it's doing, and everybody who is anybody is involved.

It's all in 'The Godfather', when Michael decides to go into the drug biz. Experts got to work, profits soared. Nothing else matters.

PS: the pipeline deal via Afghanistan is a fringe benefit - certainly a really big deal, but poppy is perpetual and always reliable, with bargain-basement overhead.

gopey said...

Maybe they're thinking that two wrongs make a right? But then, each wrong is jam-packed with so many multiple wrongs that you end up feeling the whiplash of shock treatment. Yuck!

bgi!pnki!fzzyu!bnnyu! said...

To chime in with our congenial Mr. Melmoth - nice work, Myt. If bloggers are ever someday deemed worthy of Pulitzers...

Turn Off the NoPR & Turn On the Check!

(and happy Laborious Day too)

Porter Melmoth said...

And a bit of a motto for NPR Check (with no apologies to the source):


biggerbox said...

Also left unexplained in this piece was the curiously contradictory assertions that the reason we've "never heard" about the Haqqani network is that the Taliban takes credit for their misdeeds, and that the Haqqani are so nasty and cruel that the Taliban reject their methods.

gopey said...

In another case of CIA blowback, we learn (Asia Times) that the IED's the USG were blaming on Iran were from somewhere closer to home: