-Operation Gladio, Rockefeller, Bush, the Ford-Reagan Assassinations-
“A coalition of multinational corporate executives, big-city bankers, and hungry power brokers… want to give you George Bush… their purpose is to control the American government.” -Ronald Reagan, 1980.
The resignation of Richard Nixon set off a scramble for the Vice-Presidency. The place guard that surrounded President Ford were divided, with Kissinger pushing for the appointment of his former boss (1), Nelson Rockefeller. Ford’s chief of staff, Donald Rumsfeld (2) and his aid, Dick Cheney, were instead suggesting Rumsfeld as a possible candidate for the job. Bush, too, was actively seeking the vice-presidency, as was Rockefeller (2,3).
As George H.W. Bush had only won one election in his life, serving as a one term congressman, to name him vice-President did not seem to be a logical choice.
But there were considerations that had nothing to do with the Vice-Presidency, and everything to do with putting a stop to the Senate’s intention to begin hearings into the illegal activities, assassinations, and other crimes committed by the CIA—investigations that had been stimulated by Watergate.
William Colby, the new CIA director, as he was responsible for spilling the beans, would soon be shown the door. A replacement, a cover-up artist, would be needed to fill his leaky shoes.
Bush, as he had been in the CIA since at least 1960 or 1961, seemed the logical choice to become the director of the CIA, for a number of reasons, including those related to his having “turned into assholes and shit himself to death” (3) when it appeared that certain of his past CIA indiscretions might come to light (see chapter 4). For Bush, to become CIA director would almost be like a home coming, like a family and class reunion. Indeed, the agency was already overrun with Bush cousins from the Walker side of the family—Walkers who were also Skull and Bones alumni (4). Indeed, there was so many Yale’s Skull and Bonesmen in the CIA, it was joked that meetings involving top CIA officials could be likened to a Yale class reunion (5).
Bush, having been with the agency since at least 1960 (6), also had personal, political, and business-related reasons to take command and to prevent the Senate’s prying eyes from ever getting a detailed look inside the American version of the Gestapo. But then, so did the Rockefeller clan.
Nelson Rockefeller had been associated with the CIA—the Brotherhood of Death— since the Eisenhower and Nixon administrations, when he served on panels which oversaw the highly secret agency (7). Rockefeller also frequently made speeches in which he referred to “the brotherhood”—which may have been a veiled reference to Yale’s Skull and Bones or Hitler’s SS (the Brotherhood of Death). In fact, he so often repeated the phrase, “the brotherhood of man under the fatherhood of God,” that reporters shortened it to create the acronym BOMFOG.
Rockefeller liked to pretend he was a man of the people. However, once when his aids proposed a plan that would increase worker’s take-home pay, Rockefeller asked (8), “What is take-home
Rockefeller also held a controlling interest in a Standard Oil subsidiary (Creole Petroleum Company) in Venezuela (8)—a country that housed CIA-bases for the training of special assassination teams that could be sent anywhere in the world, even America (9).
More importantly, at least in regard to a choice for vice president, whereas Bush had been a one term congressman, Rockefeller had been elected governor of New York four times.
President Ford faced two difficult choices, and one of his main concerns was covering up CIA malfeasance and its involvement in terrorist plots and political assassinations (10). It was not so much a matter of which man to pick for which job. Rather, Bush and Rockefeller would require Senate confirmation, and both men were distrusted by various Senate factions. Some senators, such as Frank Church, were already grumbling about Bush, accusing him of being a fascist bent on installing a totalitarian government pay.’
Finally, Ford chose Rockefeller to be his vice-president. George Bush got the nod for the CIA post, in November, after the firing of CIA director William Colby because of his failure to contain the Senate and House investigations. Bush was confirmed in December. However, whereas the choice of Rockefeller triggered applause from man)? quarters, especially the media, the choice of Bush provoked outrage (11).
As summed up by nationally syndicated Washington Post columnists: “the Bush nomination is regarded by some intelligence experts as another grave morale deflator [and] would aggravate the CIA’s credibility gap.”
Senator Frank Church accused Bush of being involved in past coverups, and warned that Bush would abuse his power and engage in future coverups if he got the post (12): “There is no question in my mind but that concealment is the new order of the day.”
Church even accused Bush of being a fascist who hid his evil acts behind the secrecy of government. Church said of Bush (12), “Hiding evil is the trademark of a totalitarian government.”
A totalitarian government, however, is the Hegelian/Hitler ideal—the same ideal worshipped by the Yale Bonesmen—the Brotherhood of Death. As detailed in previous chapters, the Bush family made its fortune doing business with Nazis, and continued supporting the totalitarian Hitler regime even after Hitler declared war on the United States (13).
The CIA, too, was a manifestation of the Hegelian/Hitler ideal. Thousands of murderers who had been Nazi SS Gestapo officers, were recruited into the CIA (14). As detailed by the Church Committee (15) and others (16) terror, torture, mass murder, and the assassination of democratically elected leaders was official CIA policy.
Frank Church intended to lead the Senate investigation into past CIA-abuses. Even before the appointment of Bush and the firing of CIA director, William Colby, he had described the CIA as a rogue operation, “a self-serving bureaucracy which feeds on itself. Those involved are constantly sitting around thinking up schemes for [foreign] intervention which will win them promotions and justify further additions to the staff… It self-generates interventions that otherwise never would be thought of, let alone authorized.”
Given that Bush-Walker family tentacles had spread throughout the CIA, like a cancer, Senator Church and others were convinced that if George W. Bush became the next director of the CIA, it would be bad for country.
“The wrong kind of guy at the wrong place at the worst possible time” —Nationally syndicated columnist, George Will.
Despite these objections, and with the help of powerful business and banking interests, George Bush got the job in December of 1975.
Nelson Rockefeller—after extensive hearings into his wealth, and despite the fact that he had been discovered paying bribes to government officials, including Henry Kissinger (8)—was sworn in as the 41 st vice president of the United States on Dec. 19,1974.
Rockefeller envisioned taking charge of domestic policies. Much to his chagrin, Rockefeller was immediately challenged and blocked at every turn by a formidable clique headed by Ford chief of staff Donald Rumsfeld and his aid, Dick Cheney (17).
Instead, Rockefeller (as well as Kissinger, Rumsfeld, and Cheney) would be used to head off the Senate investigation of the CIA—an investigation triggered by Watergate and a December 1974, article in the New York Times in which Seymour Hersh published an expose of the CIA and its violation of the CIA’s charter.
Master Hypnotist Derren Brown Tests Plausibility of Claims Sirhan Sirhan was Programmed Assassin
The results are surprising, to say the least.
As later reported by the Church Committee, in addition to murder, assassination, torture, and terrorism, the CIA had been engaging in Nazi-like experiments, often on unwitting human subjects, exposing them to diseases and mind altering drugs, such as LSD. The objectives of CIA projects, such as “BLUEBIRD,” “ARTICHOKE,” and “MKULTRA” included using drugs, hypnosis, and terror, to create alternate “split” personalities. One objective was to create artificial personalities which could be programmed to assassinate specified targets, such as labor leaders or politicians, and which could be used to engage in other high risk assignments that might normally be avoided. Related to this was the goal of defeating interrogation. That is, once the altered, secondary personality carried out its mission, the main personality would return to the forefront of consciousness, but would have no memory of being programmed as those memories would be locked away in the split-off portion of the alternate personality.
It is unknown if the CIA was successful in creating programmed assassins, as CIA director Helms destroyed most (but not all) the records. Nevertheless, some have wondered if Sirhan Sirhan (the assassin of Robert Kennedy), Artur Bremer (the 1972 attempted assassin of presidential candidate George Wallace), Squeaky Fromm and Sarah Jane Moore (the attempted assassins of Ford) and Hinckley (the attempted assassin of Reagan) may have been programmed by “MKULTRA.”
Following Nixon’s resignation there were other embarrassments as well—not only for the CIA, but for the nation’s media. According to William Colby, former Director of the CIA: “The Central Intelligence Agency owns everyone of any significance in the major media.”
CIA Admits Using News to Manipulate Americans
Indeed, the Church committee verified this revelation, and determined that the CIA had co-opted several hundred journalists, including some of the biggest names in the business. Big name reporters and some of the “Talking Heads” that were featured on network news, were being paid big bucks by the CIA to lie, to distort, and to spread propaganda.
For example, Lesley Gelb, of the New York Times, was accused of having been on the payroll of the CIA. It has been alleged that one of Gelb’s duties was to recruit journalists in Europe, who would write stories that would create public acceptance for the use of the neutron bomb.
Frank Snepp, a CIA field officer, had also revealed how the CIA and British intelligence was “using journalists as field operatives.”
A 1968 memorandum from CIA headquarters to CIA director Richard Helms described how the CIA had coopted a commercial news agency, Forum World Features, which sold weekly packets of news stories to newspapers all over the world. “Forum… has provided the United States with a significant means to counter propaganda, and it has become a respected feature service well on the way to a position of prestige in the journalism world.”
“One journalist is worth twenty agents.” —anonymous CIA agent.
Carl Bernstein, writing in the October 1977 issue of Rolling Stone magazine, reported that more than 400 American journalists worked for the CIA, and that the New York Times was one of the CIA’s closest media collaborators. Yet other CIA assets included Philip Graham, publisher of the Washington Post, as well as Newsweek and Time magazine and CBS news. In December of 1977, the New York Times reported that “more than eight hundred news and public information organizations and individuals,” had been on the CIA’s payroll.
As summed up by Bernstein: “America’s leading publishers allowed themselves and their news services to become handmaidens to the intelligence services.”
Nor has the practice of using the media to lie to the American people gone away. A classified CIA report which was accidentally released in 1992, revealed the CIA “has relationships with reporters from ever}? major wire service, newspaper, news weekly, and television network in the nation.”
Since 1996, the task of the CIA to coopt the mass media has been made much simpler. Less than two dozen corporations now control or own over 90% of the nearly 10,000 newspapers, magazines, and radio and TV stations in America (18).
Should we be surprised, therefore, that whereas the mass media put President Clinton’s minor sex scandal under the microscope for nearly two years, that this same corporate-controlled media has avoided examining CIA, FBI and Bush administration complicity in the 9/11 terrorist attacks?
Controlling the media is a classic Nazi tactic. “Propaganda” Hitler once said, “is the most effective form of terrorism.”
In 1974, there were only the grossest hints as to the CIA’s involvement in assassinations, torture, mind-control experiments, and the manipulation of the media. It was to be the job of Rockefeller, as well as Rumsfeld and Cheney, to cover all tracks and to stop any House or Senate investigation, or at least throw it off the track (19).
Despite the efforts of the Ford-Rockefeller White House, the Senate and House each established their own Select Committee on Intelligence Activities, chaired by Frank Church and Otis Pike (respectively). Rockefeller, with the assistance of Kissinger, Rumsfeld, and Dick Cheney, began obstructing Senate and House inquiries, particularly those which in any way concerned the training and employment of CIA assassination teams (10,15,19) or terrorist attack squads, such as Operation Gladio.
The Pike Committee finally issued a contempt of Congress citation against Henry Kissinger for his refusal to provide documentation of covert operations. Kissinger, Rockefeller et al., thumbed their noses at Pike.
The coverup effort was a partial success. For example, there is only a brief mention of “Operation Stay Behind” within the Church reports (Pike’s report being suppressed). Operation Stay Behind was a CIA terrorist operation aimed at the citizens and politicians of European countries and their democratically elected leaders (20).
According to the 1976 Senate report on the CIA by the Church Committee, this program was first conceived by the US Joint Chiefs of Staff was staffed and funded by the CIA, and put into operation in 1948 by the National Security Council.
Essentially, the CIA was using Nazis, Neo-Nazis, SS-offic-ers, and CIA-trained terrorists to indiscriminately murder European men, women and children, and to assassinate or otherwise remove or eliminate communist, socialist, and left-wing politicians.
In Italy, this program was referred to as “Operation Gladio (which means “sword”). In Austria it was named “Schwert” (“sword”). In France it was called “Glaive” (“sword”). It was called “Operation Sheepskin” in Greece. “Sveaborg” in Sweden. In Belgium, Operation Stay Behind had the name: “SDR-8.” Likewise, in Switzerland it was given an alpha-numerical name: “P26.”
Regardless of country, Operation Stay Behind was run by the CIA and British Intelligence under the umbrella of NATO, and involved the use of snipers, police officers, and para-military units to kill people at random and to conduct brutal raids on supermarkets, theaters, and other public places (21–28). In one series of attacks, in Brussels in the mid 1980’s, 28 people were murdered while shopping at local supermarkets. Again, the purpose of these attacks was to strengthen the hand of right-wing governments and to prevent left-wing governments or politicians from coming to power.
It was the duty of Bush, Kissinger, Rockefeller, Cheney, and Rumsfeld, to try to cover up these crimes. Indeed Rumsfeld (the Secretary of Defense when the U.S. was attacked on 9/11) had served as U.S. Ambassador to NATO in Brussels, Belgium in 1973 and 1974—when some of the worst atrocities were taking place— and thus had a special personal interest in preventing any damaging disclosures.
OPERATION GLADIO: CIA TERRORIST ATTACKS ON EUROPE
Operation Sword (“Gladio/Schwert/Glaive, etc.”) was an outgrowth of Dulles’ “Operation Stay Behind.” Initially, this program served to recruit high ranking Nazis and SS Gestapo agents into the OSS and the CIA after the close of WWII. By 1952, Dulles and his CIA had created a secret guerrilla terrorist army whose primary mission was terrorism and assassination—often of random targets who might be murdered by snipers, as they shopped or walked down the street. Dulles believed that through random acts of terror, left-wing governments could be overthrown, or prevented from ever coming to power if the blame for those terrorist acts could be placed on leftists (20). Right wing governments are always the beneficiaries of terrorism.
Operation Sword was first put into operation in Italy, in 1947. Italian citizens were gunned down by snipers, trains were derailed, and buildings and planes were blown up by CIA-Nazi agents, and then blamed on “communists.” The purpose of this terrorist campaign was to prevent a communist electoral victory in the 1947 Italian elections. This CIA orchestrated terrorist campaign was a success (21).
These and other acts of random terror (Operation Stay Behind), although directed by the CIA (in conjunction with British Intelligence) were administered under the protective umbrella of the Clandestine Co-ordinating Committee at the Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe “SHAPE” (22). SHAPE would later became the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO).
Although these CIA-terrorist cells were spread all over Europe, the training bases were located in Germany, Italy and France. Likewise, these terrorist operations were directed and funded by CIA agents working in the US Embassies in Rome, Paris, and Berlin. These same CIA agents not only controlled these terrorists cells, but had infiltrated and often directed the Intelligence services of these and other countries (23).
In Italy, project “Stay Behind” was known as Operation Gladio.
As detailed by Charles Richards and Simon Jones (24), the purpose of Operation Gladio was “to engage in clandestine, non-conventional” acts of terrorism. Over 600 “people were recruited and trained by American and British intelligence at the Capo Marrargui base on the northern tip of Sardinia. They were organized in 40 independent cells. Six were responsible for intelligence-gathering, 10 for sabotage, 6 for codes and radio communications, 6 for running escape routes and 12 for guerrilla warfare. Five of the guerrilla units were named after flowers such as azalea, rhododendron and broom. Gladio established 139 arms caches [which] were used by right-wing terrorists.”
Ed Vulliamy, of the Guardian (25) uncovered “a briefing minute of June 1,1959” which revealed that Gladio was built around “internal subversion.” It was to play “a determining role” in national politics, by employing “non-orthodox” warfare at the “national level” in “close cooperation between the Italian and American secret services.”
The purpose of Operation Gladio, in Italy, was to preserve the legitimate authority of the right wing government put in place by the US, and to combat any threats against its integrity, such as, the election of socialist or communist leaders. According to the briefing minute (25) Gladio should be ready “to adopt, with timely readiness, preemptive action to assure the state’s prestige, capacity for action and for government”.
In other words, the purpose of Operation Gladio was to use terror and murder not to combat any external threat, but to combat internal threats by using terrorism. However, the targets of these terrorist acts would not be opposition politicians per se, but rather, the citizens of the state. Through terrorism directed at citizens, and if that terrorism could be blamed on political parties or groups striving, through democratic means, to gain elective office, then the population would turn against those groups and vote instead to maintain the status quo; i.e. a government that would act according to the best interests of Britain, the United States and Wall Street.
Immediately prior to and after the 1963 Italian elections which gave the premiership to Christian Democrat Aldo Moro and 25% of the vote to the Communists, CIA-trained terrorists, which included a number of Nazis, began a campaign of terror which included indiscriminate bombings and murder. The purpose was to blame the “communists” so as to justify the overthrow of Moro and the installation of a right-wing military dictatorship.
Dossiers were compiled on over 150,000 Italians, mostly teachers, students, union leaders, priests, and left-wing politicians, all of whom were marked for arrest, imprisonment, and possible torture and death (26).
The bombing and indiscriminate killings continued and even according to CIA handlers, soon became out of control (27). Nevertheless, CIA “decided not to close [Gladio] down because it fostered useful contacts with the Italian security establishment.”
Gladio also served as a useful weapon to keep the Italian electorate under control. Citizens would be shot and killed by snipers, they and their families might be blown up while strolling down the street. No one was safe. Even police were targeted (28).
Vincent Vinciguerra (a neo-Nazi who took part in a 1972 bomb attack that killed three police officers) confessed at trial “that every bombing in Italy after 1969 was linked to one group. “The orders are given by an apparatus belonging to the state, specifically by a secret parallel structure of the Interior Ministry” (29).
And who controlled that “secret parallel structure?” In the 1960s and 1970s, the Nixon White House, the CIA under William Colby and George W Bush, as well as Henry Kissinger and Alexander Haig—a presidential wanna-be (30).
“In an interview the exNATO operative [Vinciguerra] said that Ted Shackley, the CIA’s deputy station chief in Rome, fixed a meeting between Alexander Haig and Gelli [a Nazi terrorist] at the US embassy in Rome in the early 1970s, when Haig was President Nixon’s Chief of Staff. “Money” he said was then filtered to Stay Behind or Gladio with the blessing and knowledge of both Haig and the then head of the US National Security Council, Henry Kissinger”
After Nixon’s resignation, Alexander Haig became NATO Supreme Commander, from 1974 to 1979. And who is “Gelli?”
Licio Gelli was a Nazi who belonged to a secret society, known as “P2” and the “Brotherhood of Death.”
In Italy, the secret Brotherhood “P2” served as “a right-wing shadow government, ready to take over Italy. Among its members: four Cabinet Ministers, all three intelligence chiefs, 48 MPs, 160 military officers, bankers, industrialists, top diplomats and the Army Chief of Staff. After meetings between Gelli, Italian military brass and CIA men in the embassy, Gladio was given renewed blessing -and more money – by Haig and the then head of the National Security Council, Henry Kissinger” (31). Again, the purpose of Gladio was to engage in random as well as targeted acts of terror against civilians.
In 1976, while George Bush served as director of the CIA, Kissinger as Secretary of State, and Haig as commander of NATO, the “Brotherhood” was given orders to kidnap and kill Italian premier, Christian Democrat Aldo Moro, and overthrow his democratically elected government.
After several failed attempts “terrorists” finally kidnapped Aldo Moro in 1978 and held him in a Milan apartment “safe house.” While held captive, Moro was questioned as to exactly how much he and his government knew about the involvement of NATO and the CIA in his abduction and Italy’s secret “parallel” arm)?. Indeed, before he was killed, Moro was forced to provide detailed notes—which later were discovered (and then suppressed) when the safe house was raided by police (32). By then, Italian premier Aldo Moro was already dead.
Although the kidnapping and murder were blamed on terrorists known as the “Red Brigade” it was later discovered that this terrorist organization had been infiltrated and was acting as yet another CIA front (33).
As to Operation Gladio, when the existence of this organization came to light, and when it was then blamed for the numerous murders, terrorists acts and massacres that had been committed against Italian citizens, the new Italian Prime Minister, Guilio Andreotti, was forced to give a speech in the Italian parliament, during which he explained that Gladio “must not drift from its formal NATO military brief (34).
As to the Secret Brotherhood, P2, the existence of this secret society did not come to light until 1981. However, it was not until 1990, that evidence began to surface directly linking P2, not only to the CIA (35), but to George W. Bush (36).
As detailed on Italian television, and by Richard Bassett, of the Times (36), Mark Hosenball, of the Sunday Times (37) and Paddy Agnew of the Irish Times (28): “in the 1976 general election, the huge success of the Communist Part}?…encouraged some to believe that Italy might be close to voting in its first ever Communist government. In order to forestall this possibility, the CIA allegedly sponsored a series of right wing terrorist attacks, via Mr. Gelli’s P2…Bush, then director of the CIA, not only knew about these CIA activities in Italy (during the late 1970s and early 1980s) but was in fact one of the masterminds behind them.”