Monday, November 03, 2008

Spies, lies, Barry and his mom

The election is very near, and I see little reason to attempt to persuade anyone to vote for John McCain -- or, more properly, against Barack Obama -- since every reader has by now surely made a decision. In all likelihood, Obama will win. Even so, the closeness of the race remains risible, given the disaster of the Bush years.

I can live with the results, whatever those results may be. True, I had planned to compose an An die Schadenfreude in the event of a McCain win, but an Obama presidency will eventually grant us Puma-folk some lovely told ya so opportunities. Besides, Barack Obama has such a fascinating history that I now would prefer to keep him in the spotlight.

What I call "The 1981 mystery" (discussed here) seems the most promising area of research. Although the proposition that American intelligence recruited a young Barack Obama may seem absurd at first, this theory explains quite a few things.

(I don't see why Obama supporters should be afraid to track these clues. Who knows? The truth may work to his credit.)

For quite some time, this blog has asked questions about Barack Obama's charmed college years. Occidental College, Columbia University, and Harvard are all very expensive schools. How did he pay for his education, relocation, and living expenses? Loans could explain much of the story, though not all of it. Scholarships? He was, by all accounts, a less-than-diligent student, at least until Columbia.

His grandmother earned a decent living but was not wealthy. After Columbia, he took a $12,000 a year job as a community organizer, which indicates that he felt unpressured to repay loans.

How did he become President of the Harvard Law Review? Via a "writing contest," or so we are told, although Obama refuses to allow us a glance at the winning opus. He never wrote anything for publication during his Harvard period, although any truly ambitious law student would have done so. Obama defenders have argued that other Presidents also had a phobia for writing, but this is not true.

And how did this little-known, utterly unpublished "author" score a massive advance for the autobiographical Dreams From My Father? Nothing about the project indicated high sales -- in fact, Obama had only a hazy idea of what he wanted to write about, even after he cashed the check for his advance. Most tyro authors are very lucky to sell 5000 copies of a first book, and the writer gets maybe a buck a copy. Obama received enough money to maintain an office, to keep his family in comfort, and to finance a trip to Bali. And even under those luxurious circumstances, he missed the deadline by a wide mark. (Some believe that he used a ghostwriter; see also here.)

"The 1981 mystery" refers to Obama's earlier mystery trip to Pakistan and India. He went on this very expensive sojourn during the summer between Oxy and Columbia, at a time when he reportedly wore thrift store clothing. During his days at Occidental, Barack Obama apparently came to know a Political Science professor who was also a key CIA consultant on Soviet matters. He had also made the acquaintance of two Pakistanis from influential families.

At first, one might suppose that his rich friends paid for the journey, at least for the Pakistani portion. (He also went to visit his mother in Indonesia.) But other factors appear to have been in play. Forgive the self-quotation (and skim ahead if this stuff is familiar), but some of you may have missed the weekend postings:
1. In 1981, Pakistan was under martial law, and U.S. travel was discouraged or forbidden. At the very least, we can say that a trip to a strife-torn forbidden zone would have constituted quite an adventure for any young man. So why does Obama refuse to mention this adventure in his books?

Think about it: If you were writing an autobiographical work, wouldn't you want to fill it with dramatic incident?

2. At the time, the CIA was offering clandestine support to the anti-Soviet "freedom fighters" in Afghanistan, who counted Osama Bin Laden among their numbers. Much of this support effort was run through Pakistan, using cut-outs.

3. Obama may have held an Indonesian passport, due to his Indonesian stepfather. This factoid is of unhealthy interest to those rightwingers pushing the "Obama as Muslim" smear. I'm not interested in that nonsense. I am interested, however, in the suggestion that a student holding such a passport could get into places where most Americans could not easily go.

A CIA-linked professor would have immediately understood that such a passport offers very interesting possibilities. For obvious reasons, the Agency likes to recruit people who hold multiple passports.
All of which may seem like insufficient grounds for suspicion of an intelligence link. Recently, however, the current de facto Prime Minister of Pakistan, Muhammadmian Soomro, made a startling revelation:
While in Karachi, Obama had stayed at the residence of his college friend, Hassan Chandio. In Jacobabad, he was the guest of Soomro family. Muhammadmian Soomro confirmed this information and said it was his first meeting with Obama.

"Yes, he had been our guest and spent three days in Jacobabad," he told The News. Soomro, presently in the US, his second home, said an American friend had told his father, Ahmadmian Soomro, about Obama's arrival in Pakistan and asked him to look after the American. Soomro's father was the deputy speaker of West Pakistan Assembly and had also later served in the Senate.

Ahmadmian Soomro had also served in banking industry and was considered a pioneer in cooperative banking. By the time Soomro's father had hosted Obama, he was only a college student who went to Pakistan on his way from Indonesia where his mother was working with the Ford Foundation's micro credit finance project. Also Obama's mother was a frequent traveller to Pakistan and according to Time Magazine, she had a little bit proficiency in speaking Urdu.

When Soomro was asked about the person who referred Obama to his father, he said he nowadays lived in some country in South America. He was, however, reluctant to disclose his identity, saying he will have to seek permission from that man before giving his profile.

Although, Obama has not disclosed his link with Soomro, he mentioned it during his canvassing campaign while talking to a Pakistani American, Shahid Ahmad Khan, member of Board of Trustees Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee.
I cannot think of a reason for Soomro to lie about such a thing. Can you?

If we dismiss the idea that Obama was working on behalf of American intelligence, then why else would Soomro's mysterious American friend make sure that the young student came under the protection of one of Pakistan's most powerful families? Obama had met no member of the Soomro clan during his Oxy period.

In my previous piece, I suggested that the mystery American must have been CIA. On reflection, I must admit that he might have worked for the diplomatic corps. For all practical purposes, the end result would be the same. Roughly half the people in any given embassy are working for their home country's intelligence service.

In my opinon, the fact that Soomro considers America his "second home" tells us much.

Some of my readers have suggested that we should trace the "fingerprints of intelligence" to an earlier period. Perhaps this is a family affair. Perhaps Obama's mother, Stanley Ann Dunham, also worked for the Agency.

Her proclivity for foreign adventures and her talent for foreign languages certainly made her the sort of person the CIA loves to recruit. Some would argue that her left-wing political views mitigate against such employment. Her outward political stance may have been a cover -- at any rate, the Agency has managed to recruit some rather unlikely "helpers" over the years. (Timothy Leary once claimed that he was aided by a "liberal" faction of the CIA, which he considered "the best mafia" in the world.)

All of which leads me to ask: What was Ann Dunham doing in Pakistan prior to 1981? Why would she learn so obscure a language (to Americans) as Urdu?

Ann spent most of her time in Indonesia, where she was married to an executive with the American Mobil corporation. The CIA had, of course, played a key role in Indonesia's history. At least one Agency veteran of the time has said that "the CIA took it upon themselves to make, not just to enact, policy in this area." (Also see here and here.)

To make a long and very gruesome story far too short: Back in the 1960s, two oil companies linked with the Rockefeller dynasty -- Stanvac and Caltex -- felt that their investments in Indonesia were threatened by President Sukarno, who was considered soft on Communism. Stanvac, for our purposes, is simply another name for Mobil.

To protect American business interests, the CIA engineered a coup in Indonesia in the 1965-67 period, which led to one of the most appalling episodes of mass murder in history. Over 500,000 people died in the resultant bloodbath, which ended with the installation of a CIA puppet named Suharto.

Lolo Sotero, Barack Obama's stepfather, was the key liaison between Mobil/Stanvac and the Suharto regime.

These events may now seem "long ago and far away" to many modern Democratic voters. But the situation was quite different in 1967, when Ann Dunham married Lolo Soetoro. An active leftist -- which Ann Dunham supposedly was -- with an interest in international affairs would have known all about the bloodbath. It was in the newspapers. Any true student radical would have refused to eat lunch with a Suharto/Mobil functionary.

And yet she married the man.

Does that seem likely to you?

Here's a question for those of you who dwell on the left: Can you recall any "socialist" of your acquaintance making such a match? If you are old enough to recall the student radicalism of that era, ask yourself: If a fellow activist had married a key functionary of a murderous, right-wing regime (Suharto has been rightly compared to Chile's Pinochet), would you not have felt just a little suspicious of that person's lefty bona fides? Wouldn't Ann's choice have set off your paranoia alarms?

There is reason to suspect that the Agency contacted (or at least kept an eye on) Ann during her marriage, if marriage it was, to Barack Obama Sr. See my earlier piece here.

Incidentally, one of the above links on Indonesia goes to a fine work by Lisa Pease -- who is now, I am sorry to say, a strong Obama supporter. (I met Lisa long ago, although she would not remember me.) Lisa, if you happen to read these words, let me ask this: What would you say about someone with Stanley Ann Dunham's history if her son had become the Republican presidential frontrunner? What conclusions would you reach? Be ruthlessly honest. How quick would you then be to rationalize away the connection between this "leftist" lady and the Suharto government?
Comments:
What occurs to me is that if your suspicions are correct, it would explain a lot of the treatment that Obama has gotten from the Village, and would begin to make sense out of the war chest he began the primary with.

My husband was just talking about Mailor's brilliant Harlot's Ghost. Now, I don't have the discipline to get through that opus. I contented myself with my husband reading some of the finest passages to me. But what Mailor makes clear is that the moneyed class is really into national defense and international intelligence.

I could explain a lot of the luck that has come his way.
 
It makes sense, it fits with the known facts, and as lori pointed out it explains a lot.

For those who are ignorant of history, the CIA has done way more bizarre things than this.
 
You can live with the result either way. You can live with triggered nuclear weapons always ready to launch. You can live with biological or chemical agents that can snuff you out wherever you happen to be. Somebody else's shit on your spinach. Joe Biden: "Who gives a shit?" And Barney Frank wouldn't look like that if he laid off the high-fructose corn syrup.

Not everyone has felt an earthquake. Almost no one in America thought of CIA - or any intelligence agency - as being up to no good back then. But in this day and age of trite cliches, anyone who believes the official version of the 9/11 Commission Report needs to have his head examined. Actually, I'm trying to make an analogy about Bacon's Idols and transverse logic, and two other parts, without being censored, and only out of fairness won't even leave a nick or alias; no, not fairness. Chivalry.
 
so what does all this mean? I am no fan of obama, does this mean the he is really being controlled by the CIA? and this is a coup of sorts?
 
Whatchoo talkin' about, Joe? Obama IS the "Republican presidential frontrunner," as you yourself pointed out (sorta) a week or two ago.

And now I'm off to rent a copy of The Year of Living Dangerously for my election eve viewing. Seems appropos, somehow...

--LandOLincoln
 
I too thought that the marriage to Lola was very odd when I first became aware of his background (few Americans know about the horror of the Suharto massacres of the Indonesian Left).
One aspect of Ann Dunham's attraction to (and marriage to) Lolo that does make sense - she was recapitulating certain aspects of her family of origin.
It was said that her own father was quite narcissistic and could "charm the legs off a couch", and it appears that he drank heavily (Obama even published an early poem about him with the line "Pop switches channels, takes another Shot of Seagrams, neat...").
Obama's father seems to have been a clearcut narcissist, and ended up an alcoholic (essentially this led to his death).
Lolo also appears to have been a narcissistic womanizer, and ultimately died of alcoholism (through liver failure).
Much has been written about how people tend to replay their childhoods in their choice of romantic partners. Some of the best discussion of this can be found in the work of Dr. Jeffrey Young (originator of Schema therapy).
 
Clayton: I honestly don't know what it means. Must mean something.

Look at it this way: You walk into a newly-erected office building, into a room without furniture or fixtures. On the ground you find a gun with one empty chamber. There's also a subtle bloody footprint, indicating an unshod foot.

What does it mean? Impossible to say. You don't have enough data to form a precise theory.

But does the lack of a theory mean that you should IGNORE the gun, the blood and the footprint?
 
What it means is that there is a hell of a lot we don't know about Barack Obama.
 
"But does the lack of a theory mean that you should IGNORE the gun, the blood and the footprint?"

----

Interesting question. And yet, yes, they always require you to have a theory. Apparently, it's not enough to point out that some things need more investigation.

But thanks for this line of thought.
 
I'd like to point out one more weird thing about Obama's mamma, probably irrelevant to above discussion but interesting in that it appears to have been generated by a blog swarm. A bunch of random blogs all popped up with the identicle seemingly- personal blog entry regarding nude pictures--three in all--purported to be those of Obama's mamma, chin and all.
An example of one of several would be here:

http://astuteblogger.blogspot.com/2008/10/naughty-obama-mamma.html

I'm not sure who salted the internet with the same blog entry and the photos--which sure look pretty damn authentic to my amateur eyes--but it would be interesting if someone looked into their photoshop tags, as was done with the birth certificate, and see what trails where left behind.
 
Another few thoughts.
For most Americans, traveling to Pakistan would require exceptional antecedent circumstances. But in Obama's case (in 1981) - he'd already lived in an 'exotic' Muslim country (Indonesia) and had Pakistani friends in New York. Also, narcissists have a need for new experiences (which help fill the internal void, along with acquisition of adulation and power) - they're more likely to travel to exotic or dangerous or romantic locations (and they're more forward about soliciting the assistance of powerful individuals when doing so). So from that perspective, a trip to Pakistan doesn't seem that odd.

He didn't mention the trip in Dreams, but that book was mostly about his paternal roots (focused on his African heritage), so omission of the Pakistan trip in this book isn't too surprising. Meanwhile, Audacity was published in 2006, after 9/11 - so, politically (given anti-Muslim, anti-Middle East sentiment), it would make sense for an ambitious politician (desiring the Presidency) to omit mention of traveling to Pakistan.

When word of his Pakistan trip first came out I was immediately suspicious because it hadn't previously been mentioned - but at this point, I'm not sure how much is there (at least along these lines). However, the fact that such a thing never came to light until recently says something about how little we know about Obama's past (both his lack of transparency, and the relative dearth of investigative journalism).
 
G~

You appear to make an assuption that Lolo "ultimately died of alcoholism (through liver failure)."

He is said to have "died of a liver ailment". Hepatitis B and C, Malaria and amoebic infections have been widespread and a problem in Indonesia. I don't assume he died of alcoholism.

Why do you assume Obama's poem, "Pop" was written about his grandfather? BO refered to Stanley and called him "Gramps".

Frank Marshall Davis smoked cigarettes until he died, drank "whiskey" and wore glasses.

The poem tells of "Pop" reciting a poem he wrote "before his mother died". Stanley's mother committed suicide when he was 8. Stanley was not noted for writing or reciting poetry (who recites poems they wrote when they were 7?), but Frank Davis certainly WAS reputed to recite his poems all the time... he was a noted poet.

Weird, huh?
 
Hmm... very interesting post Joseph.

I did have a thought about possible financing of schools that I don't have the time to research right now: If Obama's family (step or otherwise) were connected with the CIA, do they have a scholarship type of program for the children of CIA members, or some other form of financial support?

Kyre
 
"1. In 1981, Pakistan was under martial law, and U.S. travel was discouraged or forbidden."

I question the source of this, as a New York Times travel article was published in 1981 on travel to Pakistan. I have not been able to find any back up to the often posted "only Muslims or those on official business could go there"... including searching US State Dept. warnings & advisories.

NYT article:
_______________

LAHORE, A SURVIVOR WITH A BITTERSWEET HISTORY

By Barbara Crossette, Assistant News Editor of the New York Times

Published: June 14, 1981

(She writes:)

"...aimless, freelance wandering around the city's bazaars", mosques, museums, an 80 acre classical Mogul style garden with 450 fountains...

"Though Lahore has several hotels in a variety of price ranges, three are most frequently recommended to foreign visitors: the Lahore InterContinental, the Lahore Hilton and Faletti's."

"...alcohol is no longer served in public places (you can get it in your hotel room if you are a non-Muslim foreigner)"

If you go: Lahore, the capital of Pakistan's Punjab province, has an international airport served by Pakistan International Airlines and (from New Delhi) by Indian Airlines, India's domestic carrier. Connections with other international airlines can be made through Karachi.... Tourists can obtain a free, 30-day visa (necessary for Americans) at border crossings and airports. ... Because Pakistan is an Islamic nation, most tourist attractions and all mosques are closed to visitors on Fridays. The Pakistan Tourism Development Corporation (with an office in the Faletti's Hotel complex and information publications available at major hotels) maintains up-to-date lists on museum opening hours, as well as on city tours.

http://query.nytimes.com/gst/fullpage.html?res=9F0DE2DA1338F937A25755C0A967948260&sec=travel&spon=&pagewanted=1
____________________

Reading the article, I don't get the impression that travel was "discouraged", let alone "forbidden", but rather encouraged by the Pakistan Tourism Development Corporation & free 30 day visas.
 
Another minor point.
I can't say that I looked completely exhaustively - but when I did look into it a while back, I could find no references confirming that Ann Dunham had traveled to Pakistan as early as 1981.
She did do a stint there, apparently consulting for the Asian Development Bank, starting in 1986 or 1987. It seems that she also probably did travel extensively throughout South Asia. It's not clear when she first might have visited Pakistan. Some refs:
http://iaoj.wordpress.com/2008/09/01/obamas-mother-stayed-in-pakistan-for-5-years/
http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601087&sid=aOOwMgWY_VIA&refer=home
http://www.midweek.com/content/columns/mostlypolitics_article/obamas_sister_goes_campaigning/
 
"Perhaps Obama's mother, Stanley Ann Dunham, also worked for the Agency."
"Roughly half the people in any given embassy are working for their home country's intelligence service." ~ Joseph Cannon


Stanley Ann worked at the US embassy in Jakarta.

Stanley Ann worked for USAID, widely regarded as a CIA front.

Stanley Ann worked for The Ford Foundation, widely regarded as a CIA front.

Muhammadmian Soomro was CEO and Director of Pakistan Agricultural Development Bank. Stanley Ann worked as a "consultant" in Pakistan for PADB 1985-86.

"If Stanley Ann Dunham was working NOC for the CIA then socialist/communist ties would be be a definite plus.

Her connections to that world (assuming they existed) would provide her son with the same access.

The CIA recruited young and built NOC identities. They still do." ~myiq2xu

"Occidental College, Columbia University, and Harvard are all very expensive schools." ~Joseph Cannon


Punahou, where BO attended from 5th through 12th grade, was also a very expensive elite private academy. Supposedly Barack was admitted to Punahou with the help of "Gramps" (the furniture salesman) Stanley's alumnus employer. Perhaps Ann had "connections" that helped.

Also I wonder about the claim that the Dunhams moved to Hawaii at the very moment that it became a state because "Stanley found out about a new furniture store".

My grandparents moved to HI in 1961. They had to leave pretty much everything behind except family memento stuff & some books, as shipping was extremely expensive, and he had a very exceptional advanced job lined up. The idea of moving to Hawaii at that time for a furniture salesman job makes zero sense to me. Seems one would not make such a move on a lark.

Madelyn had a higher banking position in Seattle, and climbed very quickly to VP at Bank of Hawaii, in the ony major HI city, at a time that tons of money was flowing into the new state from Asia. She seems to have struck it big, after Stanley chasing a furniture store job.

I wonder if perhaps Madelyn was placed to keep an eye out for money coming into the largest HI bank in the pre-computer age. I note that she had attended University of Washington and UC Berkeley.

Just speculatin' & wonderin'!
 
Hi elliewyatt,

On the topic of Obama's grandfather - there are other allusion to his drinking. E.g.
An article in the Occidental Weekly notes:
"The scene described in that poem, in which Pop is 'Sitting in his seat, a seat broad and broken / In, sprinkled with ashes,' is remarkably similar to the first description of Obama's grandfather Stanley in the memoir [Dream from My Father]: 'I can still picture Gramps leaning back in his old stuffed chair after dinner, sipping whiskey and cleaning his teeth with the cellophane from his cigarette pack.'"
[A slightly longer quote from the "Pop" poem: Sitting in his seat, a seat broad and broken/ In, sprinkled with ashes,/ Pop switches channels, takes another/ Shot of Seagrams, neat]
The poem is generally taken to be about Stanley (his grandfather). I agree that the lines "recites/ an old poem/ He wrote before his mother died" can appear to conflict, but Obama's recollections can sometimes meld different elements together (and then there's "poetic license").

On the Lolo point - you're correct, I'm jumping to a conclusion. Obama Sr.'s alcoholism is well documented, but there's been relatively little written about Lolo. I would guess that my conclusion is correct - but it is a jump. There's been considerable speculation that alcohol consumption led to the liver failure - and Corsi even states that this is true (as though he investigated it) - but I wouldn't take Corsi as being a reliable source. One comment on Lolo's drinking is from an article in the Chicago Tribune: "Soetoro, who died in 1987, was hardly the image of a pious Muslim, friends and family members say. His nephew, Sonny Trisulo, 49, said Soetoro always liked women and alcohol. One of his health problems was a failing liver. 'He loved drinking, was a smart and warm person, the naughtiest one in the family,' Trisulo recalled. "(I should note that Trisulo later tried to back away from this statement - I think because of the damage to family reputation).

Of the diseases you mention, chronic Hepatitis B would be the likeliest alternative, since it's endemic in Indonesia. Also, comments such as "when my mother helped him travel to Los Angeles to treat a liver ailment that would kill him at the age of fifty one" seem relatively inconsistent with fulminant disease (which would tend to rule out certain of the disease options). Though mortality from chronic HepB in Indonesians is not inconsiderable, it appears somewhat lower than I expected. One paper I just looked up gave HepB mortality in one Indonesian population as 0.15%, rising to 0.9% if you throw in all cases of liver cancer, some of which would be HepB related (but these numbers seem perhaps a bit too low to me). Also, the effects of chronic HepB infection can be compounded by alcohol consumption, with both contributing to cirrhosis, so it's not necessarily an either-or. So the liver-failure-from-alcohol conclusion is a jump, and could be wrong - but I suspect it's right.

On the topic of USAID and the Ford Foundation - both were certainly used/manipulated by the CIA - but from what I've read, most people working in them were not CIA.
 
Yes OK. Agency. Got it written all over his CV (or do you say 'resumé' in America?) What does this mean? I think above all it means that he is felt to be absolutely 'safe', and won't even dream of doing anything that might challenge anything. The interests around Bush/Cheney/Halliburton can sleep soundly.

Not that Obama could rock anything, of course. He'd be offed in a few days if he started having conversations out of range of the bugs. But someone who's worked on assignments for case officers as a 'good boy' since his teenage years is even less capable than the others - if that comparison means anything nowadays. An ideal occupant of the presidential office after 8 years of W.

Now what about the financial turmoil and what's around the corner... One thing it isn't is a result of 'bad management'.

b
 
So Jack Cashill has recently been claiming that Ayers wrote Obama's memoir Dreams from My Father, and this claim has been referenced in this post (the ghostwriter comment).

Authorship attribution analysis is something I became really familiar with (much too much familiar with) while we were working on debunking and exposing Techdude.

I've run some analyses.
I can pretty much flatly say - Cashill's claim is FALSE.

First - here's a link to a stylometry analyst who looked at this question last week:
http://www.philocomp.net/humanities/dreams

Secondly, I've run my own analyses. Predominantly I used Jgaap, since I'd previously found this to be the best single tool currently available. I also tried punctuation analysis using the software Signature (the latter is a relatively simple approach with less discriminatory power).

Punctuation results - the punctuation pattern in Dreams matches the pattern in Audacity, and not the pattern in a large sample of Ayers writing.

Far more importantly - the Jgaap analysis consistently matched the author of Dreams to the author of Audacity (i.e. they were apparently written by the same person, which would equal Obama) and did not match the author of Dreams to Ayers, or to a large set of other random authors (I gathered the large set of random authors as a control set while trying to track down Techdude). There's various options in Jgaap using different features of the writing, and different approaches of matching author to text, and they all gave the same answer.

One thing I will mention. Cashill in part makes the claim based on some similar phrases he spotted (in Dreams and in Ayers' writing). Personally, I was misled by the same type of approach (but with an even large set of apparent similarities) during the initial Techdude analysis. Specifically, this led me in the direction of thinking that the author of the COLB hoax (calling himself Techdude - his actual name was Adam Fink) and someone posting under the name Techdude on a neonazi site were the same person. Later, more sophisticated analyses (some of which I've just deployed here) made very clear that the author of the COLB hoax was indeed Adam Fink (which was confirmed by independent information) and that this was not the same person as the neonazi Techdude.

A side note - I've noticed that Obama can be a bit of a textual magpie - picking up nice phrases and lines from other sources. E.g. see here:
http://www.democraticunderground.com/discuss/duboard.php?az=show_mesg&forum=132&topic_id=5148677&mesg_id=5169121
 
The vast majority of intelligence work bears no resemblance to James Bond films. Covert Ops personnel are usually ex-military.

Most CIA agents work at gathering information and/or transmitting it to Langley for analysis. Most of what they gather is mundane data on agriculture, industry, etc. They also try to get information outside official sources to verify the "official" data.

NOC agents typically have full-time jobs as part of their cover identities. Their status as agents remains classified even after they retire or die to avoid exposing others.

Valerie Plame Wilson is a perfect example. She worked NOC for Brewster-Jennings under her real name. Her specialty was in NPT violations, which is part of the reason why her husband Joe was tapped to go to Niger to check on the uranium "yellowcake" allegations.

After she was outed, Brewster-Jennings was out of the spy biz, and anyone working for or closely with them is marked as a possible agent or source.

That's why the CIA was so pissed.

BTW - Not everyone working in a CIA front company is a CIA agent, and not all agents work in CIA front companies.
 
b:

"What does this mean? I think above all it means that he is felt to be absolutely 'safe', and won't even dream of doing anything that might challenge anything."

Something more than that is going on. It may not be apparent on your side of the pond, but it is here. Obama has been groomed for a long time -- hell, they were talking about this guy running for president back in early 2004, while he was still a state senator who had not done much. He has survived and thrived when other candidates would have gone down in flames.

I mean, look at the plagiarism thing. It killed Biden back in the day, but Obama sailed right past the issue, even though what he did was far worse. Why is that? How do such things happen?

The control of the media was uncanny. I've never seen anything quite like it -- certainly not where a Democrat was concerned. The progressive media ceased all internal debate and went into Messianic mode.

This whole election was a covert op.

g:

I probably should not have linked to the Cashill piece, since I never really cottoned to the notion that Ayers did the writing. The chronology speaks against the idea.
 
Just because Ayers didn't write it doesn't mean it wasn't ghostwritten. There is something fishy about the whole thing.

Has any other President of the Harvard Law Review been offered a book deal for his memoirs before he even passed the bar?

Job offers at prestigious law firms, sure, but book deals with big cash advances?

What accomplishments does Obama have to merit the rewards he has received? He gets lots of accolades, but what has he done to earn them?

To use a sports analogy, Obama is like a college benchwarmer with no stats who gets drafted in the first round and is given a huge signing bonus.
 
Hey, wanna play a game of Kevin Bacon??

Business International- SDS, CIA, Bernadine Dohrn, Barack Omama

::

Jim Lindgren, Professor of Law, Northwestern Univ. posts:

"Obama’s first fulltime employer, Business International, had substantial SDS ties in the 1960s.

I learned this yesterday when, for a project I’m doing, I had occasion to read Carl Oglesby’s memoir of his days as a leader of the SDS in the 1960s, Ravens in the Storm: A Personal History of the 1960s Anti-War Movement. Oglesby, who was President of SDS in 1966 and 1967, led the largely nonviolent wing of the group in its battles with the violent revolutionary wing (which became the Weathermen). SDS at the time had three national secretaries, two of which were Bernardine Dohrn and Mike Klonsky. Dohrn and Klonsky led the attack on Oglesby and his radical (yet liberal) vision. Although the broad difference in philosophy was the overarching reason for the split, the chief bone of contention at the time was Oglesby’s development of SDS contacts with Business International, a business information and consulting service led by Eldredge Haynes. Indeed, Haynes or Business International are discussed on over 25 pages of Oglesby’s memoir, and they are part of the subtext of many more pages.According to Oglesby, the Dohrn/Klonsky wing was highly suspicious of SDS’s joining in any programs with Business International. Oglesby’s memoir recounts long discussions and interrogations of Oglesby — led by Dohrn, Klonsky, and Arlene Bergman — over Oglesby’s development of SDS links with Business International.
Of all the firms in all the world, Obama had to walk into the one that years before had closer ties to SDS than any other mainstream business in the world. What luck!


http://volokh.com/posts/1225663950.shtml

::

Excerpt from Carl Ogleby's (SDS leader) autobiographical book, Ravens in the Storm: A Personal History of the 1960s Anti-War Movement :

Bernardine said, "Arlene, we're running really short on time. You still have the floor."

Arlene looked up from her papers. "Even more questionable" she said, "is Carl's insistence on encouraging an SDS relationship with a man named Eldridge Haynes of a group called Business International. It has been pointed out to Carl that this is very likely a front for the CIA. Yet he has persisted in organizing meetings between it and SDS groups."

Rules of procedure be damned, I couldn't help myself. "Arlene, I'm trying to get our message out to anyone who will hear it. Do you want to know why?"

"Actually, no."

"If these Business International guys are CIA, I say all the better! Let them hear directly what we're trying to say! Let them all spread out out and tell their brothers!"

Arlene gave the room a long incredulous glare. "You are either stupid or treacherous, Carl. " she said. "You open the lines to the very groups that most passionately want to destroy us and then you expect us to believe that it is good."


http://books.google.com/books?id=fPvbJNRkm5UC&pg=PA249&lpg=PA249&dq=%22business+international%22+CIA&source=web&ots=-UeJsjpyFd&sig=gL4a8Pa3ZhFmtrAhTEql7j0WL0M&hl=en&sa=X&oi=book_result&resnum=10&ct=result#PPA248,M1
::

"Boasting offices all over the world Business International was described by the New York Times as doing contract work for the CIA." New York Times, Dec. 27, 1977- C.I.A. Established Many Links To Journalists in U.S. and Abroad -

http://209.85.173.104/search?q=cache:gJvbCq2o_FIJ:www.lobster-magazine.co.uk/intro/search.cgi%3Fzoom_query%3Dcia%26zoom_page%3D9%26zoom_per_page%3D10%26zoom_and%3D1%26zoom_sort%3D0+%22business+international%22+CIA&hl=en&ct=clnk&cd=7&gl=us

::

Wiki sez:

The company was persistently and erroneously identified as a front operation for the Central Intelligence Agency. Part of the company lore was that the unusual role of researching politics and economics from abroad during the 1950s and 1960s “proved” that the company was a CIA front, but no firm evidence ever surfaced. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Business_International_Corporation
 
G~

I don't doubt that Lolo was a serious drinker, or that he may have indeed died as a result of it.

I guess I've just become sensitive to someone posting speculation (we've done our share here) as fact, then finding it all over the place as accepted truth.

It's becoming more difficult to separate truth/fact from 'stuff'.

I've probably asked ten times for back up to the statement that non-Muslims/Americans were not welcome to visit Pakistan or that tarvel was banned in 1981. I'm NOT denying it, but I ask for any source. I cannot find anything but the NYT travel article posted above, saying that non-Muslim Americans very much could travel there and drink liquor.

Either way, it doesn't answer the Obama passport question, but asserting no-travel IF it's not true doesn't help get to the truth (doubt we ever will anyway).
 
(opps! Apologies~ I did not mean to indicate that speculation has been posted here as fact, but that we have done some speculating in order to seek out the story behind the bloody footprint)
 
elliewyatt,
I agree strongly with you that we need to be careful about posting speculation as fact (and thanks for flagging my Lolo comment). The distinction is critical - and maintaining an attachment to facts is the most core tool we have (Anna Valerious: "never fight reality because reality always wins. The narcissist is the one always fighting reality.").

myiq2xu,
I agree that the circumstances of the book deal are weird. It speaks to something - but what that is is unclear. There is the phenomenon that David Mendell wrote about: "a trend that would follow Obama throughout his charmed personal life and into his political career - people going out of their way to clear a path for him to succeed."
The analyses I tried with Jgaap went further than disconfirming the Ayers theory. They indicate that the same author probably wrote Dreams and Audacity, and distinguished that author from a large set of random authors. So unless the same theorized ghostwriter wrote Audacity, the hypothesis becomes untenable. That doesn't completely exclude assistance - e.g. that an editor might have helped edit these texts (and with books of this sort, that's customary) - but the fundamental authorship seems to be largely the same in both texts.
 
What ever happened to the Rashid Khalidi theory of at least the conduit if not the source for Obama's college and travel funds. Or have you looked at that already? I'm new here.
 
I probably should not have linked to the Cashill piece, since I never really cottoned to the notion that Ayers did the writing. The chronology speaks against the idea.

Well at least the official chronology. What if they had crossed paths when Obama first went to Columbia? It is supposed that they only lived a few blocks apart.
 
Has the CIA become a rogue agency?

Read, "Sabotage - America's Enemies Within The CIA" by Rowan Scarborough
 
Pakistan for half of it's almopst 60 year history has been ruled under martial law, never has any US citizen been forbidden to travel there. And in 1981 it was certainly NOT a "strife-torn forbidden zone". In fact there are American Schools in most of the major cities, (I atended one), where American children would attend. It had a budding tourism industry, and the majority of the people are very moderate in their beliefs. The media only shows they crazies, same thing here in the US.
 
I had quite independently pulled together the same set of information and concluded the Obama, his mother and father were all at least CIA assets.
The father may have not been happy with this - sad life. Please note that Jared Israel has written on his belief that Ayers and Dohrn were Cointelpro agents, breaking up the SDS and leading radical youth into the Weathermen, a provocateur state controlled organisation. Dohrn and Ayers never served time and Dohrn worked in the solicitor's office where Obama and Michelle met. Dohrn and Ayers appear still to be agents.
Ayers worked in the same Community Organisations as Obama for decades.

These organisations appear to be fronts.
 
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