Monday, November 17, 2008

the blog cabala and a wall of fire

This is fascinating; Laura Rozen has details of the Italian inquiry into the Abu Omar rendition case. You know the one - when the CIA agents foolishly brought their own roaming mobile phones and spent a fortune staying in Bondesque hotels. The really interesting thing is that the inquiry is throwing up more and more cross-links with the Italian branch of the Niger uranium story.

It seems, if I understand the document correctly, that the same semi-official skunkworks inside Italian military intelligence that was responsible for the Abu Omar case was also the point of contact for the effort to gin-up the WMD story - and the various other weird things going on with Michael Ledeen, Larry Franklin and pals. And it was also the handler of a journalist who the SISMI used to a) smear various journalists, and b) blame the French for the forgery.

Here is a sample of this material; it's no accident, surely, that it ended up on in September, 2004. That joint must have been thick with dark actors playing games back then. Note also that the smear campaigners tailored the material to its use very carefully. The entire thrust of it is intended to flip the story on its head - rather than the reality, in which people very close to the US and Italian governments conspired to fake the WMD story for their own ends, the fake explains how the French conspired with a secret Democratic Party group, Laura Rozen, Josh Marshall, and Kevin Drum(!) to fake the fake documents, in order to attack "3B - Bush, Blair and Berlusconi". It's hella Stiftung.

It's also wonderfully wingnut, especially the bit in comments where some of them start arguing that Niger should be spelt properly, with two Gs, and others explain patiently that, no, it rhymes with "tiger".

But what I want to know about this is...what was in it for the Italians?


Anonymous said...

What if sections of the Italian secret state had been, since about 1944, working closely with the CIA to keep out the baddies? Some of them might have secrets (like, 'I was with you in Bologna that day.') which they won't want broadcasting. Others might be so Atlanticised as to see their true loyalty elsewhere. After all, it worked for the KGB, for a time.

Dave Weeden said...

You've already mentioned Ledeen's ties with Manucher Ghorbanifar. (Wikipedia: The CIA issued a burn notice (or "Fabricator Notice") on Ghorbanifar in 1984, meaning he was regarded as an unreliable source of intelligence, and a 1987 congressional report on Iran-Contra cites the CIA warning that Ghorbanifar "should be regarded as an intelligence fabricator and a nuisance".)

But did you know that 'the left fear' Sarah Palin in Ledeen's opinion the most qualified and by far the most exciting candidate of the four [Presidential and vice-Presidential candidates]. Why is Ledeen still at large and employed?

Alex said...

From Ledeen's post: a man with no executive experience, who invents 'facts' many times a day

The degree of projection here is truly phenomenal.

Alex said...

Also, CW, I think you're probably onto something there. It's sorta reminiscent of people like Markus Wolf.

Anonymous said...

In the case of Berscolini (sp?) and the mid/higher levels of the Italian industrial/security complex, it could well have been simply payoff. Bush and the GOP were clearly in the catbird seat at that stage, and being owed favors could be very *personally* lucrative.


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