War On Terrorism Revealed digs the dirt of Washington.

Aquarian Weekly 12/26/01 REALITY CHECK

A GEORGETOWN CHRISTMAS

Editor’s Note:

Having only heard from the infamous GOP snitch once since the events of 9/11/01, which was described by Mr. Campion as a disjointed message rendered mainly through indecipherable code, the insider known as Georgetown contacted jc the week before Christmas from an undisclosed location via the walkie-talkie feature of his Nextel phone. The following is the most coherent portions of that conversation.

jc: It’s been a long time. I put several calls into your office, and no one is willing to go on record regarding your whereabouts. You were assumed dead until I saw your picture on the CNN web site in the background of the Ashcroft deposition on treason.

GT: Hey, everyone on the payroll is a little busy right now. Plus, after reading those irresponsible columns you were cranking out for weeks on the war, I couldn’t lend credibility to any of it. You know the only reason you have any clout down here is because I keep calling you a cancer. That’s a popular term right now.

jc: Irresponsible?

GT: What is this bullshit about bin Laden being dead? He’s not dead. I know four major Saudi diplomats who had dinner with him last week. That legless fuck, what’s his name, the guy in that video with him, called the embassy in Pakistan and leaked his travel arrangements to the secretary. Christ, he’s using an American jeep to pick up broads at the border. Where do you get your info?

jc: I need to see a body. No one can to produce it, because it’s chopped up and buried in caves all over the desert. This allows his disciples to claim he ascended to heaven on some big rock in Tora Bora where he sits at the right hand of Mohammad laughing at the Western Satan.

What is this bullshit about bin Laden being dead? He’s not dead. I know four major Saudi diplomats who had dinner with him last week. That legless fuck, what’s his name, the guy in that video with him, called the embassy in Pakistan and leaked his travel arrangements to the secretary. Christ, he’s using an American jeep to pick up broads at the border.

GT: This is why it is impossible to talk to you now. You think this is all a big joke

jc: I’m not joking. He’s dead.

GT: He’s not dead. We have tapes dated 12/13 that have him ordering mescaline from his connection out of a hotel in Riyadh. He’s changed his name to Shlomo, and often passes himself off as an Israeli diamond merchant.

jc: That sounds like a blatant rumor. What did he need mescaline for? He was sitting on a mountain of smack.

GT: The man’s a junky whore.

jc: Anyone in this government have any balls to call the Saudis out for this?

GT: King George is not going there. Not with a 90% approval rating and gas prices plummeting.

jc: Iraq?

GT: There are already CIA agents planting Wall Street Journal press credentials on Iraqi military officers. American press affiliation is now punishable by hanging. Except for the NY Times, which is considered an ally of the Hussein regime.

jc: So, this will bring the grand total to three American presidents defeated by Saddam the Terrible.

GT: Not so fast. There will be weapons inspectors in there by Valentine’s Day. You can count on that. We have Hussein’s brother-in-law handcuffed to a shower nozzle in an Atlantic City hotel room. He’s standing in about a foot of water with his testicles connected to a car battery.

jc: Old-fashioned CIA stuff.

GT: You were right about one thing in those ridiculous columns: The real spy-ring is back, baby.

jc: I need to see more assassinations.

GT: They’re coming.

jc: Since you’re being brutally honest, can you comment on the 60 Minutes report last Sunday that Republican congressmen were sending death threats to Jim Jeffords’ house.

GT: So? That fucking, scum sucking, traitor humped the system, screwed his constituents, the party and the whole goddamn country. He should be standing next to that John Walker kid when they send him to the firing squad.

jc: Are you confirming that story?

GT: Wish I could, but CBS hasn’t gotten anything right since Uncle Walty walked.

jc: You think that kid’s a traitor?

GT: Jeffords is no kid.

jc: I mean the American kid who fought with the Taliban.

GT: I’ll eat monkey shit if he’s convicted of anything.

jc: I didn’t ask you that.

GT: Traitor.

jc: Back to the Jefford’s factor. Are you guys concerned about the budget vote?

GT: I’m concerned about the fact that the people of Vermont voted for a Republican and ended up with an Independent that is holding up the GOP agenda, backed by one of the most popular presidents in forty years. Now this bastard is holding court to the highest bidder. It’s fucking criminal and should be exposed for what it is: self-aggrandizement.

jc: See if you agree with this: Junior runs this War on Terrorism up the flag poll for four years, brilliantly masking the inevitable bankruptcy of the US economy.

GT: How about this one? Seventy percent of all Americans under the age of 25 join the military, leaving more money for their parents to spend now that they don’t have to bail them out, pay for drug rehab or support college in perpetuity.

jc: Do you expect the government to start investigating all these celebrity charity events?

GT: Let’s call that whole thing what it is: a PR farce. They’ve spent thirty years trying to figure out where the Concert For Bangladesh money went and now George Harrison’s dropped dead. Christ, you can’t expect dolts like George Clooney to know what’s going on. And it’s painful watching that O’Reilly guy sucking up free press by calling him names. It’s like watching Madonna at a Hollywood premier. Creeps the hell out of me.

jc: I’m not even that cynical.

GT: Didn’t I just hear you do a radio spot recently where you swore college football is fixed?

jc: I’ve started a petition to hold the next BCS poll meeting in Cleveland so their brutish drunken Browns fans can pelt them with garbage.

GT: You can put a bonnet on a whore, but that doesn’t make her queen of the Easter parade.

jc: Ouch.

GT: I was talking about football.

jc: Last one. I’ve been dying to know how badly you think we fucked up on 9/11.

GT: (long pause) Have kids, then tell them to have children, and hopefully by then they will know what happened.

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james campion.com

Aquarian Weekly 12/12/01 REALITY CHECK

ISRAEL UNDER SIEGE

The state of Israel is under attack. This is not a particularly new revelation. It has been under attack since its inception, which has long surpassed any record for civilized conflict harkening back thousands of years. But this latest atrocity is apparently not going to easily slide into the pages of “here we go again” or “let’s get to the bargaining table for some whiz bang peace talks”. This one will change the face of Israel, its borders and its history, once again.

Didn’t you know? There have been a wide variety of peace talks and treaties signed. Yes, several presidents and ambassadors, dignitaries and heads of state have stood smiling for the cameras, heralding their new and improved peace accords. The faces and dates change, and there is celebrating and political posturing, and then there are dead babies on the cross down bus and slaughtered civilians in inadvertent crossfire.

Israel is defending itself.

And it’s about time.

What has happened over this past week is long past due. The hour has arrived for this nation to fight back in earnest. It is time it chooses survival over compromise. Anyone arguing against this has not stood next to wounded protestors on the streets of Jerusalem. I invite them to the experience. It is well worth the trip if you are going to debate peace processes and diplomatic posturing.

The enemy of order is the Palestinian Liberation Organization, its leader, Yasser Arafat and its offshoot freedom fighters, Hamas.

It is time for the United States government to get onboard with this view of Arafat, and what has been wrongfully perceived as an underdog Arab nation being denied strips of sand promised by God.

These are dangerous days for freedom fighters. They are now officially dubbed “terrorists”. This is what happens when the USA is yanked into the proceedings. Of course, with billions upon billions of annual dollars poured into Israel’s military and political aid, the USA has been more than involved since WWII.

But it’s different now. That kind of “involved” was before the big buildings disintegrated into the streets of lower Manhattan. Now it is a direct involvement, the type that tends to change semantics.

So, this incredible charade Arafat has perpetuated for decades as some kind of fatigues-wearing, hate-mongering guerilla wild man turned dignified world leader, is now finished. He is exposed, finally, as a thug instigator, murderer and inciter of violence and destruction. He can no longer hide behind this mask of suffering minority leader. He is the villain we pain to paint in Osama bin Laden, although bin Laden’s resume has to take a back seat to the disingenuous spin machine keeping this psycho windbag in a seat of authority.

It is time for the United States government to get onboard with this view of Arafat, and what has been wrongfully perceived as an underdog Arab nation being denied strips of sand promised by God. Hundreds of thousands of Palestinians presently being charred by angry Israeli Defense Forces see it this way. They are abused, imprisoned and killed for the actions of a rogue military organization, acting under the ridiculous guise of a government asking for rightful sovereignty.

It needs to be eradicated. And those who have harbored, bankrolled and/or defended its actions must be silenced.

This is no different than what the United States is conducting thousands of miles from its borders, except for the fact that the enemies of Israel are its citizens. At any moment, a countryman could slink into a grocery store, hotel or city bus and detonate a bomb strapped to his torso. This happened last week, and the week before that, and the one before that.

There is a fine line between compassionate diplomacy and self-preservation, and this last devastating blow in Jerusalem, which left 25 more innocents dead, has crossed that line, again.

The PLO has been kicked out of nearly every bordering Arab country from Jordan to Lebanon and settled onto Israel soil to cause deadly mayhem. It exists only to terrorize. Whatever lied behind its original purpose is buried beneath all this hate.

For years, clear-thinking people have been screaming about these atrocities in several languages from several ports. Only now, in a world-turned-war-zone, with the American spirit wounded, can the rest take heed.

If Israel is going to be an ally of the United States, then it must be allowed to defend itself from this madness. It will not be pretty. It will be war. It has been war, just called “unrest” for decades. Now it has a proper term, because America has unleashed it on the world: The War On Terrorism.

Well, Israel is the birthplace of terrorism, the home office for killing innocents. This is where it all began in religious order on holy land, and has been raging for centuries.

The United States present raping of Afghanistan and its eventual revisit of the “Saddam Hussein Problem” puts Israel squarely on the firing line. If there were ever a place that would constitute the use of the term “Ground Zero”, it would be there.

Arafat, and the present Palestinian government, has had their chances, and they’ll probably have a few more, although it should end right here. His “police” will make a few grandiose gestures and symbolic arrests, but the track record is long, and none of it approaches positive.

This is not about religion or politics. This is about the preservation of life.

But if history teaches us anything, sadly, the smart money is always on religion and politics.

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Chris Uhl, Patriot ‘s loving tribute to a managing editor.

Aquarian Weekly 12/5/01 REALITY CHECK

SWANSONG FOR THE DEPUTY

There is growing evidence that Britney Spears is a cyborg, Taliban leader, Mullah Omar is a cross dresser and Bobby Knight has a flesh-eating brain tumor. The entire planet is inches from cinder and there is a pending court case in northern California between two cretins who claim ownership of Barry Bonds 73rd home run ball. There have been six Jesus and Elvis sightings at the Texas/ Arkansas border since 11/1, and the word I’m getting is that my cat has made it across the Hudson and is slinking up route 287 into Westchester as I write this.

But I’m going to waste this week’s precious news space heralding the escape of this magazine’s managing editor, Chris Uhl.

I have no fucking idea who this man really is. I only met him in person once, at a Bennigan’s Restaurant in Ramsey, or some godforsaken hamlet of this maniacal state, and he seemed like a nice enough fellow. I secretly taped the entire conversation, but it revealed nothing except his love for The Simpsons and the Yankees and that I would sooner receive a champagne enema from Jerry Falwell’s agent than get another dime out of the Aquarian for my weekly grind.

It was always comforting to know that Chris Uhl could be reached at the office, for free tickets or credentials or to promise Pat Buchanan the cover for the privilege of having him slobber cocktail weenies all over me for fifteen minutes.

But there in lies the beauty of Chris Uhl. Before he even shook my hand he penned a preface for my second book, and claimed to understand most of what was in it, which was largely the ungodly pus I sent to press nearly every week for three years. And he was glad to do it. He said he liked my work, even cherished my place on the staff. Then he sent me what can only be described as a scathing attack on my person and race, something the FBI could use to derail chimp molesters and gunrunners.

Of course, I loved it, and sent it to the publisher. And why not? Uhl (I liked to call him Uhl to make sure some other Christopher wasn’t jiving me on company policy) was a patriot. He saw the danger in my eyes without peering into them. That is the talent I will miss, even if it will be easy for the rest of the staff to usher him off to Pennsylvania.

Yes, Pennsylvania, the birthplace of rotten whiskey and the lap dance. Somewhere in its borders they make chocolate and harbor freaks that pay good money for the right to attend sporting events and throw beer at icons and midgets.

Jesus, I’m running off the subject.

And that reminds me of another reason why I loved working with Uhl.

He once requested I take over this sidebar mess he was throwing together every week, which commented on current events and pop culture. I had done that gig in my weaker moments when I started humping words for this publication five years ago. But on the occasion of my filling in, I used the space to accuse him of every crime realized by modern man, including a few I made up for embarrassment purposes. And in a telling admonishment of his personality, the girls in the editorial department let it fly.

I never officially apologized for it.

And I never will.

Because Chris Uhl didn’t need apologies or money or drugs, he craved the action. And only a supreme being with a descent resume could begin to understand what kind of action he was seeing in this gig. Oh, there were rumors, but I didn’t believe them, or I did believe them, I can’t remember. They seemed likely, but what do you really know about managing editors?

The guy who hired me to work for this periodical years ago once told me that killing stable rats at Freehold Raceway was more rewarding than editing stories about New Jersey club bands. He couldn’t fathom my interest in writing a book about it. Told me to save up for a cat scan. Then a week or so before he quit to work for a national men’s magazine I called him in the middle of the night demanding expense money to chase a woman journalist who’d been kidnapped by Republican party officials in Washington. He laughed, hung up, and dumped me on Chris Uhl.

The rest is boring, and most of it was covered above.

But the reason why I still crank out this meaningless tripe every week is because the Aquarian welcomes it with open arms, and rarely questions it. And for that, I can only be eternally grateful. Having to deal with so many editors and publications and creative outlets in an infinite freelance dirge, it was always comforting to know that Chris Uhl could be reached at the office, for free tickets or credentials or to promise Pat Buchanan the cover for the privilege of having him slobber cocktail weenies all over me for fifteen minutes.

Now Chris Uhl is off to do what he recently told me was his passion in the first place, writing.

So I offer him this advice: Writing sucks. It is painful and demeaning, lonely and desperate, and feeds paranoia like no other profession. And that’s when you can earn or publish anything. When you can’t get it together, it causes pain and anguish. And the irony begins when you realize that you are better off in that state. None of your friends like you when you’re on, when you’re rolling, losing sleep and sure that what is coming out of you is the best, no, strike that, the worst garbage ever put to paper. What in the hell could I have been thinking? I am shit. I should be tortured and spat on and kicked to the gutter.

But Chris Uhl already knows he should be kicked to the gutter. He can write. I’ve seen the results. He’ll be fine.

It’s that girlfriend he keeps referring to that I worry about. What will become of her? Trapped in Pennsylvania with an ex-editor, strung out on over-the-counter amphetamines and trying to string together coherent sentences at 3:00 am for a noon deadline.

Pray for her soul.

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Ken Kesey : 1935 – 2001 ‘s tribute.

Aquarian Weekly 11/28/01 REALITY CHECK

KEN KESEY: 1935 – 2001

“These things don’t happen,” Harding said to the girl solemnly. “These things are fantasies you lie awake at night dreaming up and then afraid to tell your analyst. You’re not really here. That wine isn’t real; none of this exists. Now, let’s go on from there.”– Ken Kesey from One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest

I carried around a dog-eared copy of One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest my entire sophomore year of high school. It is hard to admit now, in print, but it’s true. I’d already read the damn thing twice, but hoped, in some strange way, that the spirit of it would somehow work its way into me. I tried a similar move with The Great Gatsby, but that didn’t take. Not that Cuckoo’s Nest took in any conventional or tangible way, it’s just that it spoke to me in modes that I needed to be spoken to.

It is hard to fully impart that experience now, some 25 years later, but needless to say, it was influential in all that word denotes. It was training of the first degree, a lesson in language and metaphor as bazooka, and for that I will forever be grateful.

You see, young writers love Cuckoo’s Nest, because there is a freedom there, a real sense of creative liberty. And with liberty there is the wonderful feeling of danger and confusion, and all the elements of great art, the kind of stuff that makes a young man feel alive and worthy of wasting his time in front of a typewriter or with a musical instrument or any form of creative expression. It’s like when the Jazz guys talk about Coltrane or Monk or Miles Davis or the paint crowd creams over Jackson Pollock’s colorful mess.

There is a load of that same stuff in Jack Kerouac’s On The Road and Hunter S. Thompson’s Fear And Loathing In Las Vegas. These are books that scorch the eyes and twist the brain, but, for me, they came later. Cuckoo’s Nest, and soon after, Kurt Vonnegut’s Slaughter House Five were first for me. And firsts; first kiss, first sunrise, first time behind the wheel, first drink, first night on the beach, first ballgame, first published work, first true love; these are the memories that stick and jab and keep coming back to remind us that we feel, that we live.

Ken Kesey was one of those wonderful confused danger addicts who could create something of this kind because he felt life to the core. And Cuckoo’s Nest was his manifesto.

Critically, his second novel, Sometimes A Great Notion received more noise, but Cuckoo’s Nest was immortalized in film and theater, and has an edge to it that is eminently American in its reach. It is free and wild and has an open air of possibility that reflects what is truly great about the American literary spirit; check that, the American spirit, period.

If Kesey had merely written Cuckoo’s Nest – he compiled the notes for the book while volunteering for LSD experiments and then working as a psychiatric aide at Menlo Park Veterans Administration Hospital – there would have been sufficient enough evidence that he was comfortable teetering on high wires.

But Kesey lived his art in the same fashion, by being the honest troubadour of lunacy and mayhem, the quintessential Californian jester, the clown prince of whimsical release. His gift was harboring energy, not letting it go. He could let it engulf him, channel it, and make it into a book, make it into Cuckoo’s Nest.

Kesey was one of those nine lives types, a genetic mutation of Baby Boomer angst and good old-fashioned Great Depression bravado. Sadly, many of those lives were spent jerking off around Mexico in a drug haze, or sitting as the Grand Poobah of a lost gaggle of hippies in the California Mountains. But even then, Kesey used the foul nature of the beast as performance art – the precursor to Andy Kaufman – in what he called the Merry Pranksters.

You see, young writers love Cuckoo’s Nest, because there is a freedom there, a real sense of creative liberty. And with liberty there is the wonderful feeling of danger and confusion, and all the elements of great art, the kind of stuff that makes a young man feel alive and worthy of wasting his time in front of a typewriter or with a musical instrument or any form of creative expression.

Ah, the Pranksters. Never has a more meaningless endeavor culled the imagination, while demonstrating how a warped cross-country bus ride could capture the pointless rebellion of youth with hallucinogenic stupidity. It was less fun, than militant madness, a stretch of mind-swelling, spiteful counter culture hyperbole. And it was fueled by Kesey’s formulaic mania, sometimes satirical, sometimes emboldened farce.

But a mere prank was never really Kesey’s style. He was what a very good friend of mine calls the “balls to the wall” mentality.

Kesey rode the sucker to the bitter end, or in this case, New York’s World Fair. Filmed the whole thing. Naked, painted hippies, bikers and the human match stick, Neal Cassidy behind the wheel, it was the true movable feast, a happening, a ruckus. Tom Wolfe came along for the ride. He wrote a book and called it The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test. The high brows called it the new journalism; Wolfe became a famous novelist, Kesey became an infamous one.

Kesey once said that a writer couldn’t be famous because it was “hard to observe when every one is observing you.”

Kesey said a great deal of smart and insightful things about spirituality and politics and art and literature, but that was buried beneath years of drug busts and insurrections of varied kinds. The jester routine wore thin. The maverick became the caricature, and then some kind of Buddha for the sixties generation of aging optimists.

And Kesey welcomed all monikers. He didn’t have a name for any of it. To Ken Kesey, it was just life worth living until the end.

The end always comes too soon for the hearts of fire. I have another copy of Cuckoo’s Nest somewhere. Maybe I’ll give it to my godchild, Nicole when she’s fifteen.

The world needs more wonderfully dangerous, confused lunatics.

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How Michael Bloomberg Took New York City investigates 2001 mayoral run.

Aquarian Weekly 11/14/01 REALITY CHECK

HOW THE BRUISED APPLE WAS WON

This is a tough time to write about politics. What with a smoking crater on the lower west side of Manhattan and half the tri-state area crazy with fear over terrorist activities, real and imaged. Not to mention this reporter’s late-summer exodus into the Garden State via the Bear Mountain run, making this the first campaign season that I spent away from all the cronies at Gracie Mansion in nearly fifteen years.

It was hard to follow anything in Jersey after the first week of September. There were some e-mail invites to Bret Shundler events down in Wayne, but one of them fell on the night the Counting Crows were over at William Paterson University, and my sister-in-law and her husband were visiting from Syracuse. It was a timing thing.

It was also a reverse vengeance move on my part. This was something I learned in Journalism 101 over at Trenton State in the early 80s’. “Reverse Vengeance” is when someone attacks the validity of a story you write, then asks you to cover another. That’s a no-go in the reporting world.

Bloomberg will be the next mayor of the Big Apple because it was bruised on 9/11 and Uncle Rudy rose from the political grave to do what he does best: “clean the streets and kick the ass.” And all those people who’d forgotten “the scary years” remembered what kind of Wild West show New York had been under Dinkens and feared Green like the plague.

I was able to actually practice this “theory” during a spring internship program in which students were asked to pen a query letter to an editorial department head critiquing the periodical’s material and direction, and then offering their “unique” services to correct it. Most of my fellow classmates chose Esquire or The National Review or Sports Illustrated. My choice was TV Guide.

My only mistake, apparently, was trashing the whole concept of television in the thing. This was curious to my professor, seeing how I was a radio/television major. None-the-less, my query letter was laced with expletives and references to the entire medium “resembling the pasty substance spewed from a coke-head on a whiskey binge.” It was good writing though, just not something a big-time editor wanted to read from a snot-nosed college kid.

I received a one-sentence response a month later on TV Guide letterhead from a mister Gerald Eisen that read: “You think its amusing to compare the entire television industry to a drug addict’s puke?”

I still have the damn thing.

But I think I was just writing about Bret Shundler.

Seems someone in the Friends For Shundler group denied a story I wrote in the 7/4 issue of this paper about the candidate spinning doughnuts up on Route 59 in Rockland County during the primaries. This was a spurious argument on all ends. The Bergen Record broke the story. I just commented on something a friend of mine from Haverstraw described as “pretty out there behavior for someone running for governor.”

So Jim McGreevy won. And from all accounts Jersey Dems are thrilled. Many of them remember the mess Jim Florio made of the taxes here, threatening to use the National Guard on the Garden State Parkway against “any motorist making hand gestures at the coin baskets and then blowing their horns in an attempt to travel for free.”

Florio was a madman, but he was right. There are no free rides on the parkway, not then, not now, not ever.

Which brings me to the NYC mayoral race, that wasn’t much of race at all four days before the polls opened. By Saturday afternoon before 11/6, Democrat Mark Green had a solid 16% lead over Michael Bloomberg. And that was after a furious comeback which took him from a nearly 30% quagmire last summer.

Of course, last summer his Republican meal ticket, Rudy Giuliani was mired in divorce proceedings, his wife threatening to kick him out of the mansion downtown. The mayor of NYC was reduced to shacking up with an assistant in a one-room walk-up on the lower East side. He was in no shape to stump for anyone.

It was a bitter denouement to 18 months of cop beatings and the slaughtering of innocents by the NYPD. Moreover, there was a sense that New Yorkers had somehow traded their civil rights for safety and truckloads of Disney money.

People were starting to forget Uncle Rudy’s amazing reconstruction of the cesspool of hate and disorder David Dinkens had left him. I could not blame them. They weren’t sitting next to me at Giuliani’s campaign hub in Bay Ridge, Brooklyn on the night Uncle Rudy was elected 107th mayor of New York. He was one of their own, come home to clean the streets and kick the ass, and if I close my eyes right now I can see his grinning face up on that twenty foot screen telling his people not to fear anymore.

Driving home on the BQE that night, it was hard to decipher just who “his people” were exactly. White people? Cops? Italians? Yankees fans?

Either way, it was only a few months into Uncle Rudy’s reign that the Third Avenue bridge exit off the Major Deegan, once crawling with stoned and violent squeegie guys, turned into a police state. This was good news for everyone, even the squeegie guys, who were given three-squares a day with the homeless in prison camps up in Ossining.

Now where was I going with this? Oh yes, Bloomberg’s comeback.

The press loves to talk about things like miracles. But there are no miracles in politics or sports. The Mets won in 1969 because they had better pitching and clutch hitting than the Orioles. The ’78 Yankees made up a 14 game deficit in six weeks to the Bosox because they had a guy named Ron Guidry who took the ball every fifth day and rammed it down the throat of anyone holding wood. And they had Thurman Munson, who once told Maury Allen of the NY Post that he would “gladly pistol whip anyone with a ‘B’ on their cap for five minutes of peace.”

Bloomberg will be the next mayor of the Big Apple because it was bruised on 9/11 and Uncle Rudy rose from the political grave to do what he does best: “clean the streets and kick the ass.” And all those people who’d forgotten “the scary years” remembered what kind of Wild West show New York had been under Dinkens and feared Green like the plague.

Not to mention Green, a liberal democrat, was pummeled in the all-important Hispanic vote due to his shameless dismantling of Bronx Borough President Fernando Ferrar two months ago.

Green tried the same crap with Bloomberg, playing up court records and minor league race bating, but he is grass, and Mikey is the toast of the town because his buddy, Uncle Rudy said so. The Big Apple will miss him. You know, the apple with the smoking crater downtown.

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james campion.com

Aquarian Weekly 11/7/01 REALITY CHECK

CASUALTIES OF WAR

“Be a scribe! Your body will be sleek, your hand will be soft. You are one who sits grandly in your house; your servants answer speedily; beer is poured copiously; all who see you rejoice in good cheer. Happy is the heart of him who writes; he is young each day.” — Ptahotpe, c. 2350 B.C.

Someone recently sent me that gibberish. I was glad to get it. It caused my drained constitution to fill with gaiety and laughter. Servants? Rejoicing in good cheer? Imagine a writer described as sleek and soft, especially a journalist. Most of the journalists I know are chubby and rankled. The only thing soft is their underbelly when times get tough. And times were tough these past two months for journalists. Many of whom were confronted with all these innuendos of mailbox death and the latest fairy tales coming out of Afghanistan. Information is a touchy subject in times of war, especially bad information, and there has been plenty of that.

Most news organizations have not handled bad news well lately. It is usually a bell-wringing dance party at the network level whenever misery comes calling, but most of these people are frightened now. You have to wear rubber gloves just to deliver pizza at the New York Times, and everyone at the GE building are issued gasmasks and need four kinds of ID to get on the main floor of the NBC Nightly News.

Most news organizations have not handled bad news well lately. It is usually a bell-wringing dance party at the network level whenever misery comes calling, but most of these people are frightened now. You have to wear rubber gloves just to deliver pizza at the New York Times, and everyone at the GE building are issued gasmasks and need four kinds of ID to get on the main floor of the NBC Nightly News.

Then there was the nasty business of who would be allowed to wear red, white and blue ribbons on the air. The American people apparently need to know what messenger is on board with the home team. This is getting harder in Atlanta where Ted Turner is now offering seven figures for fifteen minutes of airtime to anyone claiming to be a terrorist, know a terrorist, or can spell terrorist.

“The first casualty of War is always Truth.”

Winston Churchill coined that one, in between Nazi air raids, and those excruciatingly long love letters he penned for FDR in weaker moments. And not only is it a damn sight more on the money than that silly garbage about “the happy heart of he who writes’, but it is truer than anything your apt to see or hear or read in the way of real news for a very long time.

Now at least the media is in the same rocking boat as their consumers. The last couple of weeks most claims of patriotism went the way of fear mongering and slanted racial profiling, like all the gas stations battling to see which has the largest American flag to avoid misguided retribution. Up in my neck of the woods the poor bastard peddling petroleum has to display posters differentiating him from potential terrorists.

The media has also had a hard time explaining things like religion lately. Television people are so petrified of painting Islam as some kind of vitriolic freak domain; they preface all statements regarding it with a lecture on peace and love. Then to make things ever more difficult for the commentator, the director runs the obligatory video of Palestinians burning American flags in an angered frenzy.

“What’s wrong with these people, Bob?”

“The thing is Ted, they don’t get it. They’re abusing a beautiful and lovely religion.”

“You mean like every religion, Bob?”

“Jesus Christ, go to commercial! Go to commercial!”

What passes for news these days is dime-store charlatans posing as “experts” and “pundits” peddling innuendo and rumor, or vapid talk show dipshits like Sean Hannity painting peace protestors as infidels in the most specious ape-like scenarios known to modern reason.

Why even the crap spewed weekly in this space is hardly worth forwarding to anyone wanting to witness anything resembling The Truth.

However, there was an intriguing report last week that McDonald’s food, or the results of it, has killed more Americans in the past six weeks than Anthrax.

The number of Anthrax-related deaths has now reached a whopping four. There were more casualties at Dan Davis’ Halloween Party, although that is hardly a fair comparison. Managing editors have been known to throw dangerous soirees. The death toll at Chris Uhl’s last dinner party is still to be determined.

Other news that has slipped through the cracks:

Key sources swear that no one in al Qaeda, or anyone funding it, would be caught dead sending hand-written warning letters to Tom Brokaw’s assistant from Trenton, New Jersey. Especially since half the limo drivers on the NBC payroll are illegal aliens who would kill Brokaw without outside motivation.

Also:

Anyone attempting to drive in reverse on 161st street outside Yankee Stadium during the World Series rush, (an annual autumnal tradition) were pulled out of the car by NYPD, beaten and sent to an undisclosed area of the Bronx Correctional Facility down the block.

These stories are all true, or at least part of them, or the main parts of them. But the chances they will make headlines when doped-up college kids are leaving badly typed bomb threats on transcontinental flights are nil.

The main story, mostly disseminated from the Reality Check News & Information Desk, and not disqualified in any form of media, is that Osama bin Laden is dead, and has been dead for more than a month. Killed by his own people, close advisors, who use the Bible and the Koran as foreign relation guides.

They cannot allow the Big Gun to be dragged from the bunker caves in shackles and plastic prison booties to be exposed as a lame hack and reduced to Western culture’s new Rubin “Hurricane” Carter.

Instead, they’ll keep telling the American Scum that he is alive and doing well, leaking two-month old videos of the “new Jesus” wagging his tongue at the Evil Western Empire. Stay tuned for more casualties.

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World Trade Center Heroism ‘s report on 9/11/01.

Aquarian Weekly 10/31/01 REALITY CHECK

9/11/01 Part V HUMANITY LOST One Man’s Heroism in the Face of Historic Tragedy

Glenn Russo, a 41 year-old Lodi resident, settled into his desk on the 49th floor of the World Trade Center’s tower two around 8:30 on the morning of 9/11/01. He expected to make a phone call he’d made countless times over the four plus years he’d acted as client manager for an insurance brokerage firm. Maybe he expected the call would last two minutes, or even twenty. He certainly did not expect that within an hour he would be contemplating his own death in a sea of debris, smoke and billowing fire.

“I heard what I initially believed was an explosion,” he remembers. “I told the person on the phone to hang on a minute, walked to the window, and saw desks and metal and glass falling out of black smoke.”

Tower one was on fire some twenty stories above his head, so Glenn Russo thought it might be a good idea to round up his fellow employees for a leisurely stroll down and out of the building. He did not expect it to be a panic-sprint straight out of a B-grade disaster flick.

“People didn’t understand at first,” he sighs. “They were actually arguing with me, saying they needed to get their keys or a laptop. There were announcements that our tower was safe, but I knew what I saw out my window, and it wasn’t good.”

“I could clearly visualize my son. I thought to myself ‘I will never see him again’. I was preparing for the end.”

The image of office furniture plummeting toward the street in a swirl of black soot and flames was enough to convince many of his fellow employees that an orderly exit was necessary. And upon the rhythmic decent down the stairs toward the elevators on the 44th floor, Glenn Russo found a woman named Christal Putkowski, gripping a cane, and hobbling toward the security guard who would not allow even women needing replacement surgery on both knees to use the elevator.

Glenn Russo did not expect to see his late father standing there. “

As soon as I saw her I thought of my dad,” he says.

His father had suffered from diabetes, was a double-amputee, and lived his remaining years in a wheel chair. “I knew very well how to respond to someone who needed assistance,” he continues. “All that time with my dad, I knew how to speak and how to act. It was natural to me, so I just told her, ‘I’ll protect you.’

In a letter of gratitude written to Russo’s company, Marsh & McLennan dated 9/17, Mrs. Putkowski recalls: “Imagine a stranger saying “I will protect you’, a statement he made more than once.” It is a letter she filled with words like “gallant” and “courageous” to describe Glenn Russo’s ensuing actions.

“I had this running conversation with her,” Russo recounts. “We talked about our children, her teenage daughters and my five year-old son. We talked about our jobs, offices, anything to make the growing chaos around us seem normal.”

With a frightened woman in his arms, and people bellowing from behind to move aside or hurry up — and the anxiety of hundreds of people, now convinced that danger was imminent, careening down — Glenn Russo took each step, one at a time, for nearly fifteen excruciatingly long minutes.

He did not expect a commercial airliner to suddenly slam into the building he was carefully trying to flee.

“The stairwell shook,” he remembers. “I thought it was still just debris from the other tower.”

People rushed and pushed and crammed past their polite conversation and the step-by-step escape that must have seemed like a slow motioned crawl to everyone else.

“We made it to the special-handicap elevators on the 40th floor,” Russo recalls.

Once outside, any thoughts he’d harbored of a clear, welcomed freedom were smashed by the utter devastation, panic and death between them and any kind of safety.

Glenn Russo did not expect the building he was just sitting in minutes ago to be tumbling down around him.

“The two of us walked slowly under a canapé on Cortlandt Street,” Russo recounts. “The whole place was being deluged with debris.”

“He instructed me to keep my eyes closed and my head down,” Mrs. Putkowski writes.

The sound of blaring sirens, screeching tires and pitched screams were everywhere, the smoke was thick and burned his eyes, but through his wincing glare Glenn Russo could see people being hit by falling metal and brick, dying instantly, others sheltering their heads, some standing shell-shocked and crying.

He didn’t expect to see what happened next.

“These amazingly brave cops, rescue workers and firefighters were appearing out of nowhere, running toward the chaos,” he said. “I could not believe it.”

It was then that Glenn Russo didn’t expect to live. “I thought right then we were going to die at any moment,” he remembers.

“I could clearly visualize my son. I thought to myself ‘I will never see him again’. I was preparing for the end.”

After two or three minutes of this, Glenn Russo told Mrs. Putkowski, trembling beside him, and three women looking on stunned, that they should simply, “Make a run for it.”

So, with a deep breath and a little prayer, and the tallest building in the world’s largest city literally falling from the sky, Glenn Russo, locked arm and arm with a woman he’d met less than fifteen minutes earlier, and walked toward Broadway.

It was a walk he’d taken everyday; clear sunny days, blustery snow days, brisk autumn afternoons. He didn’t expect his next walk would be through a war zone.

“We made it alright,” he remembers. “Chrissy said to me, ‘You saved my life. I owe you lunch.'” And with a breath of tenuous relief, Glenn Russo sent Mrs. Putkowski in the direction of her home; Staten Island, away from the death and the sirens, and set about securing his own life.

“I made it down to City Hall just in time to watch my tower come down,” he says, hesitating over the horrific reality of that image. “And my heart ripped out.”

Glenn Russo, only moments before, chatting on the phone in his chair at his desk in that huge building a few blocks away, did not expect to see it disappear.

So he staggered toward a curb, nearly blinded and teetering on the brink of utter shock, and watched humanity take hold. “I saw New York City responding everywhere I looked,” he remembers. “People of every race and ethnicity caring, hugging and carrying each other; offering water, shelter, anything they could. I was so moved by it.”

And Glenn Russo could no longer contain the calm and bravado he’d mustered from somewhere. Sitting on a curb near Union Square Park, he broke down.

A man asked him if he needed water. More caring. It touched him deeply.

There were 1,700 employees of Marsh & McLennan and its subdivisions, Marsh USA Inc. Guy Carpenter, Mercer and Seabury & Smith on the morning of 9/11/01. Today nearly 300 are gone. There would be more, if not for Glenn Russo, who picked up his phone to make a call on a Tuesday morning, not unlike any other Tuesday morning, in a building he truly loved for its view and immensity.

He didn’t expect that it could be no more.

He didn’t expect to face death long before lunchtime.

He didn’t expect to be a hero.

Mrs. Christal Putkowski still has to buy him that lunch. But there will be time for that.

“We’re friends now,” Russo says. “We talk everyday. There is a bond there. It will always be there.”

“In the wake of horror,” Mrs. Putkowski wrote in her letter. “Good always surfaces.”

Amidst the loss of humanity, there is humanity found, perhaps a humanity that is never noticed, or even expected. Glenn Russo expects it now.

Something Christal Putkowski cannot deny.

 

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Counting Crows – 2001 College Tour Review

 

Aquarian Weekly

10/31/01

INTIMATE WHISPERS
Counting Crows / William Paterson University 10/19/01

Wayne, New Jersey

The Counting Crows mini-college tour swung by Wayne New Jersey’s William Paterson University Recreation Center last Friday, where a few thousand kids braved the steaming heat and brutal acoustics for nearly two hours of inspired music and whispered musings.

Counting Crows, more specifically, its singer/songwriter and poet laureate, Adam Duritz, was made for such nights: A receptive, angst-ridden audience ready for a serenade of lost love and disillusioned melancholia.

Duritz meandered on stage with his charges to announce that his voice was ravaged and proposed “a mellow night” of intimate performance. But this was a set of variant intensity, highlighted by new songs from a current project still in its creative incubation period and rousing versions of old favorites.

And by evening’s end, the youthful and fervent audience realized, more completely, the layers that lie behind not only the band’s live performance, but its meticulous song structuring as well.

The new stuff included “Black and Blue”, an infectious 70s’ style tune with a pop sensibility more reminiscent of the Crows debut work, “Richard Manuel is Dead”, a fine tribute to the sound and personality of Manuel’s 60s’ group, The Band, “Carriage”, a lilting torch song recalling the pain of parting, and “Miami”, the strongest of the bunch, displaying the rhythmic chug of the band’s more recent offerings.

Although Duritz is the obvious focal point, emotionally and physically – now a more burly, imposing figure than in previous appearances — the band has a personality best described as camaraderie. To watch the six musical pieces interact sonically and personally on stage is to witness a true mesh of distinction. As a unit, the Counting Crows are less performing songs, as they are working parts of them.

The evening’s catalog material was peppered by Duritz’s inspired rants of longing and loneliness, taking time out to periodically berate and cajole the hooting throng, punctuated by chilling versions of “Anna Begins”, “High Life” and full audience sing-alongs of “Omaha” and “Rain King”, the latter infused with a melodic reading of Springsteen’s “Thunder Road” during the bridge.

The best part of this, and any Counting Crows show, is the immediacy of the event. No two are alike, and as an observer you feel as though you may be seeing the band in its debut or swansong, and not some knock-off public relations appearance. Something the genre’s stalwarts used to be all about.

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America’s Covert War on Terrorism goes down and dirty with the CIA.

Aquarian Weekly 10/10/01 REALITY CHECK

9/11/01 Part IV KASBAH ROCKING Cooking the Great American Ass Whup

Right now a Columbian refugee is having dinner with an overtly effeminate Taliban gunrunner in a quaint bistro on the outskirts of Jalalabad, Afghanistan. They’re discussing the coming ski season and desert fall fashions. Drinks are flowing and names are innocently exchanged. Every witty aside by the young gunrunner is met with hearty laughter, as a hidden tape recorder hums inside the Columbian’s left breast pocket.

By morning the gunrunner will be missing. Word will spread through the sequestered Taliban offices, memos will be sent, and maybe a few more soldiers will defect to the Northern Alliance. But after a few days, there will be no mention of him. When his family comes calling, they will be sent to a briefing, and perhaps, also turn up missing.

A few days later maps and phone records will mysteriously disappear. There will be internal arguments and stepped-up security. Rankles officials will call for strip searches, and someone might be shot for treason. Word will spread that two or three training camp security personnel didn’t show up for work that morning, and relative innocents will be tortured. The air of paranoia will thicken and the stench will spread quickly.

And what of the friendly Columbian gentlemen?

Nothing says victory quite like a drunken Marine with a hard-on puking all over a holy relic.

He will be enjoying a weekend in Paris by Halloween, and several other well-versed, highly cash-motivated ex-cons will take his place long before he boards the airplane.

This is just one of hundreds of stories that have transpired since the dark hours of 9/11/01. And it continues like clockwork, while we wave flags and watch the World Series.

There are speeches and confirmations by smokescreen politicians and tenuous international alliances bonded and broken. The media leaks info regarding “special forces” deployment. Ships are whisking their way to the Persian Gulf in teary ceremonies.

Soon there will be raids and bombings, and sad pictures of charred babies on CNN; but that is showbiz.

For this “new war” will be fought at card tables and brothels, airport bathrooms and opium dens, back-alleys and sand dunes, one-room apartments and railway stations.

It is happening while you read this.

Right now, as Arab officials and foreign diplomats chat with Tim Russert and Paula Zahn, and the president of the United States says all the right things about Islam and a cushy Palestinian State, there are militants being purchased, toilets being bugged and well-connected Syrian drug dealers being fed hot lead through tubes inserted into their colon.

It isn’t pretty, but safety and freedom are two dangerous possessions. Both need protection by viable front men with Harvard degrees, power ties and sharp vocabularies, and those invisible others, who would think nothing of gouging the eyes out of a Pakistani student with a pair of pliers and rubbing alcohol.

That’s how the good old OSS got things done in a bygone age of racial profiling and poison dispersion.

The days before all the fuck-ups in Cuba, and that sloppy JFK mess down in Dallas. Long before head-butts with the Pentagon in Korean and Viet Nam, miscommunication in Honduras and Grenada, the historically bad “plumbers” faus pax that ended in the Watergate fiasco, and a few miscalculated phone calls to the oval office during hostage brokering in Iran.

That was the era referred to at the FBI during the 90s’ as “The Slump”. Even victories seemed like hollow rewards during it.

But there was a time, not too long after WWII, and before Dwight Eisenhower took his part-time golf gig on Pennsylvania Avenue to a fulltime one in Gettysburg, that the U.S. intelligence community was all over it. Not one foreign government conducted business without the aid of the United States, surreptitiously or otherwise. Regimes crumbled and people got hurt, and the business of freedom thrived.

And none of it was accomplished overnight.

As early as 1944, months before the effects of D-Day had taken shape in Europe, American bankers were loading up imposter real estate firms and forging military documents at the Kremlin. Men in tailored gray flannel business attire were planting deadly bacteria into Tokyo’s water supply. And French tourists, armed with hypodermic needles and a Swiss Bank account, were settling into condos on the coasts of South Vietnam.

The Mafia, using untraceable Native Americans, Cubans and displaced teamsters to export countless crimes on every continent, funded them. They were random and reprehensible, but they were our boys, and without them there would have been no A-bomb or Elvis or Cadillac.

And the sudden nostalgia for these feats of heroism was running strong in the State Department before the sun went down on 9/11/01. It became more and more obvious with each passing day when those paid to speak for all of it were silly with glee over the unfolding developments.

They were using phrases like “undesirable agents returning to the fold” and “removing the kid gloves in this operation.” And they meant it.

And they are getting things done.

There are solid odds, dropping by the hour, that Osama bin Laden is already dead. They get smaller with every conflicting report of his whereabouts. Tank, our friend at State, sent an E-mail to The Desk last week explaining the heavy betting on his demise.

“Makes no sense why these people keep telling us he’s there, then he’s not; unless they have no fucking idea where he is,” he wrote. “They keep saying they have him safely sequestered because they know we don’t want to make him a martyr, and would rather see him get an eye-opening trial, so we won’t bomb the shit out of them while he’s there. But the word is that he’s camel chum.”

The White House confirmed last week that Special Forces had been in country for a few weeks, proving that operatives preceded them by at least a week. No way the military is risking an undermanned Special Forces unit unless ways were paved and locations were confirmed. Those were mistakes made in South East Asia a long time ago.

And the Attorney General knows all too well that key terrorist rings are already being gutted. This is why John Ashcroft goes on national television and warns about chemical warfare and hits on the Sears Tower and Disneyland.

What the attacks on 9/11/01 have done is unlock the morality box. All the sins of the CIA fathers have been forgiven. Even now they are erecting a bronze statue of Allen Welch Dulles and kissing its base in reverence.

America is back in the nasty business, and the result will be cultural and financial ruin for nations all over the place. It will be a lucky day if there is anything resembling a solvent economy in the Philippines by Christmas, and long before the Saudis can defect from the proceedings, members of OPEC will be armed with Sicarri swords and stun guns.

And by the Fourth of July, what was once something of sovereignty in Iraq will be landfill for the brand spanking new U.S. military base, crawling with strippers and stocked with finally aged scotch.

Nothing says victory quite like a drunken Marine with a hard-on puking all over a holy relic.

NEXT WEEK: Part V – HUMANITY LOST

Part I – 9/11/01 Part II – Enemies of Reason or The God Bullshit Must Cease

Part III – The Folly of Negotiating with Maniacs

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The Roots of Terrorism ‘s special report.

Aquarian Weekly 10/3/01 REALITY CHECK

9/11/01 PART III THE FOLLY OF NEGOTIATING WITH MANIACSA Qualified Study of Middle Eastern Traditions

“What troubles me the most about the United States current standing in the Middle East in regards to Arab countries is the delicate balance between our alliance with Israel set against the tenuous financial dealings with OPEC. And right now no one knows how the fallout of the Gulf War will effect those invisible, radical factions who fall through the cracks of that balance.” – Henry Kissenger May, 1997

The above quote is merely a paraphrase, scribbled hurriedly on complimentary Best Western paper sometime in the early hours of a rainy morning in downtown Boston.

I had taken the trip up to Beantown with the band, DogVoices to promote my first book and drink for free. I didn’t expect to find anything worth watching at near dawn, sipping tepid beer and chomping soggy French fries, unable to sleep.

Henry Kissenger was suddenly flickering on the television, blathering on about fractured foreign relations with what was left of Russia and the “Chinese problem” when he turned to the Middle East.

Kissenger knew a thing or two about the Middle East, after years of a failed “shuttle diplomacy” between Arab leaders and the Israeli government as Secretary of State for the Nixon Administration.

The region was of special interest to me, for I’d visited Israel the previous year, spending several hours in the company of the Israeli Defense Force.

By the mid-90s’ the IDF was the finest fighting machine on the planet, and extremely sensitive to terrorist attacks on a daily basis. I’d encountered teams of two deployed at every buss stop, train station, supermarket and museum. I found their stories intriguing, sad and inspiring.

The U.S. government, the CIA, the FBI, even an aging diplomat croaking out top secret info on CSPAN at four in the morning, knew about these people, but even now we don’t hear anyone in the mainstream media utter their names or their obvious connections to these attacks.

Their faces were fresh in my mind as Kissenger continued with a hint of concern in his voice rarely heard by anyone in the media. It was well known among the reporting set that Kissenger normally horded his true feelings for dignitaries, diplomats or presidents, but now here he was almost whimpering like a school boy on CSPAN to some wetback college students about the flippant way in which the United States juggled the Arab states after the Gulf War.

By 1997, Kissenger was still “connected”. Outside of South East Asia, where he is still considered Genghis Kahn with a perm, Kissenger was often called to advise many smaller nations in the pursuit of some kind of government.

I wrote down many of his key thoughts that night regarding Israel, Pakistan, Lebanon, Syria, Palestine, Iran, Iraq and, most notably, Afghanistan, including alarming buzz terms that he never used in public like “fear” and “trepidation.”

Kissenger was sure that the U.S.’s failure to secure Syrian, Israeli and Lebananese relations, hanging by the thread of ignored treaties, and a slowly crumbling coalition of Arab states, promised protection by the Bush administration against Iraqi retaliation, spelled rancor and doom in the coming years.

Kissenger also blurted out several names of which he cited as “dissidents” roaming around Saudi Arabia, funded with oil and drug money, with a “severe disdain for all things American or European due to the colonization of Arab states following the fall of the Ottoman Empire after WWI.”

That was the first time I’d heard the name, Osama bin Laden, which rang a bell less than two years later when the first of two U.S. embassies located in Africa went up in flames.

Bin Laden had just taken control of a terrorist network called Al-Qaeda, which was a rogue fighting force mutated from the Mujahedeen, a defense militia ironically bankrolled by the Reagan Administration during the Afghani war with the Soviets in the 1980s’.

The former Saudi native later became infamous in varied FBI reports for opium trafficking and weapons’ theft in Lebanon during the dark mess known as “Desert Storm”.

Kissenger mentioned two other names that came to my attention last week when a source recently e-mailed me an article from the radically popular, Jane’s Intelligence Digest, which fingers both men as “leading suspects in the attack on New York and Washington with strong ties to Iraq.”

The first is Ayman Al Zawahiri, a Lebanese freedom fighter and current senior member of the Al-Queda. The other is Egyptian born, Imad Mughniyeh, considered, according to Jane’s, “the world’s foremost terrorist masterminds.”

Things became ever clearer this week, when a close acquaintance of the Reality Check News & Information Desk in Jerusalem hinted that Mughniyeh’s connection to the Iraqi government is “paramount to the origin of any attack on your mainland.”

Twice during our exchange, he went to great lengths to express that while bin Laden has the money and the influence to enact the level of attack perpetrated on 9/11/01, “he neither has the fear of his enemies nor the faith of his allies to mastermind something as complex and devastating.”

Columnist Jamie Dettmer, writing in Business A.M. on 9/24 quoted his own Israeli source’s portrait of bin Laden as “overrated” and “a school boy next to those maniacs.”

Further intelligence reports indicate that Al Zawahiri’s campaign for the Lebanonese liberation of land on the West Bank, originally seized by the IDF backed by U.S weaponry, and Mughniyeh’s revenge for family members allegedly murdered by U.S. soldiers during America’s occupation of Kuwait following the Gulf War, has motivated thousands of radical Muslim factions to action, including the infamous Taliban.

Prior to Mughniyeh machinations, the Taliban had been nothing more than a drug cartel running heroin to Russia through Asian organized crime syndicates. According to our Israeli source, “The idea that the Taliban is harboring bin Laden is missing a key point; it is bin Laden who owns the Taliban, and they have little choice but to back him or face annihilation.”

Both Al Zawahiri and Mughniyeh have had multi-million dollar marks on their heads from several governments, including the U.S., for some time, and were fingered by the Israeli government four weeks before the disastrous events at the World Trade Center and the Pentagon as “possible partners in a massive attack on U.S. soil.”

But what does Kissenger’s dawn revelations and the outing of these militant mutants reveal?

For all intents and purposes, the reasons for the events of 9/11/01 are simple: The continued failure of the U.S. government to allow Israel to defend itself against Palestine, Syria, Jordan and Lebanon with sanctimonious pleas for restraint and pompous political photo-op peace treaties that amount to nothing but buying time for terrorist havens like the PLO to stockpile weapons and take the lives of innocents, and, sadly, the two prior administration’s glaring inability to root Saddam Hussein out of Iraq.

The president’s denouncing of the IDF actions last month against a Palestinian federal building, after the latest of now 80 gutless attacks by Hammas this year alone, is an example of this.

Yasser Arafat’s secret army is run in conjunction with Mughniyeh’s notorious Hizbullah, a significant Arab threat to Israel, and a far more likely source for the attacks on the U.S. Their beef with the U.S. resides in nearly four billion dollars of military aid sent to Israel annually.

But America’s alliance with Israel is only a small part of the puzzle.

In the end, it was George Bush Sr’s “oil police action” ten years ago that failed to eradicate Hussein by acquiescing to an “Arab Coalition” that today harbors and sponsors scores of terrorist organizations worldwide.

“Do not think for one minute that Bush Jr. being the president is a coincidence when it comes to these crimes,” my Jerusalem source concluded.

Meanwhile, dozens of nations, and their ever-changing governments, have been doing business with the U.S., feeding off American financial and military aid, bloated on crude oil money and American business concerns to ostensibly destroy its citizens.

All the while we send in UN special consultants to Iraq to check on weapons pile up and occasionally bomb military instillations, followed by patriotic rhetoric and flag-waving propaganda.

The U.S. government, the CIA, the FBI, even an aging diplomat croaking out top secret info on CSPAN at four in the morning, knew about these people, but even now we don’t hear anyone in the mainstream media utter their names or their obvious connections to these attacks.

After years of trading secrets, weapons and laundered cash, “we the people” were sitting ducks, and the events of 9/11/01, symptoms of a much greater disease.

I remember one more thing about that rainy morning in Boston.

I folded up that paper, put it into my duffel bag, and fell asleep to Kissenger’s monotone ramblings, and hadn’t fully awakened until now.

Next Week: Part IV – Kasbah Rocking or Cooking The Great American Ass Whup

Part I – 9/11/01 Part II – Enemies of Reason or The God Bullshit Must Cease

Part III – The Folly of Negotiating with Maniacs

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