Regime-Change Specialists, One Way or Another

by Mike Booth

But this secrecy . . . has become a god in this country, and those people who have secrets travel in a kind of fraternity . . . and they will not speak to anyone else. Its friends are many in the areas of important public influence-the academic world and the communications media. The cult of intelligence is a secret fraternity of the American political aristocracy.

Senator J William Fulbright, Chairman. Senate Foreign Relations Committee, November, 1971

The Marketing of Deception, Death and Destruction

Everybody acknowledges that the Americans are the world’s greatest marketers. They can sell you anything. They made the McDonald’s hamburger the largest selling restaurant food in the world. Anyone who can do that is a force to be reckoned with. But what would happen if that that prodigious force were to go beyond hamburgers, cars and laundry detergents, if it were to pass into the realm of dark geopolitics? We don’t have to wonder, as the Americans have been there for decades.

Marketing has been a key ingredient in their ongoing crusade to take over the world. This may sound like science fiction to some people reading this, but it is rigorously true. Even the most recent of the world’s existential crises—the war in Ukraine—conforms in every respect to the American dark-marketing playbook, as conceived and executed by the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) and their presumably more presentable offshoot, the National Endowment for Democracy (NED). This new agency was spun off the CIA in 1983 and quickly became a big success. Even its name smacked of marketing genius: “the National Endowment for Democracy.”

Who can imagine an organization with a name like that dedicating itself to supporting armed groups fighting for regime change in strategically- positioned, non-aligned countries worldwide? Most of NED’s activities are carried out in the light of day in order to distinguish them from their rougher, clandestine big brother (who is never far behind if NED needs him). And their main job is handing out money. Who could object?

Say One Thing, Do the Opposite

When one starts to dig into the long list of operations of the National Endowment for Democracy (NED) it becomes clear that the mission of this august-sounding organization is the creation, indoctrination and support of opposition groups in in foreign countries that are not yet on the American bandwagon. This includes countries which declare no specific preference for American-style liberal democracy as well as those which are self-confesssed adversaries–such as Cuba, Iran, and Venezuela, and many more.

That “liberal democracy” moniker that NED bandies about so freely when promoting American values abroad refers to the United States’s corrupt, free-market, militaristic, white-supremacist and non-igualitarian society . That sounds like a negative calling card, but the Americans are, after all, the world’s consummate salesmen. Nor is it clear just who and how many people in each objective country have to be convinced of the beneficence of this proposed atypical “democracy.” If it’s not a significant sector of the candidate country’s society at large, perhaps sufficient American running dogs in high places can be cajoled, bribed or threatened into the American fold. We may never know. It’s secret. NED is a two-headed benefactor; its other head belongs to the CIA.

NED took over the CIA’s apparently-less-sordid activities, such as providing financing and organization skills for opposition groups in countries requiring regime change. Who decides which countries needed their current governments booting out and new, America-friendly regimes installed? Why NED and the CIA, of course.

What if the objective country lacks a well-organized, armed right-wing opposition? Not to worry. NED will create one for them and help them to run it. Those operations must be expensive. Who will pay for them? Not a problem. There is no shortage of American money to undermine leftist governments around the world, and it’s NED’s primary mission to distribute it. Some of NED’s activities around the world could be characterized as the creation and maintenance of proxy armies, whether of demonstrators or soldiers. That takes a lot of the heat–and risk–off NED who, as you can understand, is just an innocent bystander.

Just as important as NED’s control of the streets is the CIA’s work on the world’s news media. How did they get so many reporters and news services on board, and so quickly? The answer is not a secret.

According to the New Zealand news service, Scoop,

Nowadays the CIA collaboration happens right out in the open, and people are too propagandized to even recognize this as scandalous. Immensely influential outlets like The New York Times uncritically pass on CIA disinfo which is then spun as fact by cable news pundits. The sole owner of The Washington Post is a CIA contractor, and WaPo has never once disclosed this conflict of interest when reporting on US intelligence agencies per standard journalistic protocol. Mass media outlets now openly employ intelligence agency veterans like John Brennan, James Clapper, Chuck Rosenberg, Michael Hayden, Frank Figliuzzi, Fran Townsend, Stephen Hall, Samantha Vinograd, Andrew McCabe, Josh Campbell, Asha Rangappa, Phil Mudd, James Gagliano, Jeremy Bash, Susan Hennessey, Ned Price and Rick Francona, as are known CIA assets like NBC’s Ken Dilanian, as are CIA applicants like Tucker Carlson.


Manufacturing “Spontaneity”

This CIA-NED, one-two punch explains how the Ukrainians wound up with their “spontaneous” anti-elected-government, anti-Russian demonstrations in Kiev’s Maidan Square in 2013. The CIA-NED tandem had been preparing those mass demonstrations since at least the late 1980s. (“NED was there from the beginning, nurturing the active roots of civil society in the 1980’s.” Carl Gershman, NED’s founding director writing on the NED website, According to one solvent source, the CIA has spent more than a billion (with a B) dollars annually in recent years, buying, renting and tuning up reporters and whole media organizations. Money talks and big money talks big.

They were planting their anti-Russian seeds on fertile ground. While 4.4 million Ukrainians fought on the side of the Russians (along with the Allies) in World War II, a substantial number of their compatriots fought on the side of Hitler’s wehrmact, the nastiest among them in the 14th Waffen Grenadier Division of the SS. The recently-renamed Azov Special Operations Detachment (formerly just the “Asov Batallion”), fighting the Russians in Ukraine today is the direct descendent of those Nazis, though today’s Ukrainian government—which grabbed power after, Viktor Yanukovych, the previous elected president was deposed in 2014 and fled to Russia– prefer this Nazi spawn to be considered loyal anti-Russian patriots. That assures their NED financing, training and armament for the foreseeable future.

In keeping with the American government’s rabid anti-Soviet/Russian policy that dates from the outset of the Truman presidency–if Roosevelt had not died less than three months into his fourth term, on April 12, 1945, the second half of the 20th century would have been very different–the American clandestine services will seize any opportunity to discredit, impoverish and weaken the Russians, economically, politically and militarily. In Ukraine, after baiting the Russians beyond their limits, the American spooks achieved all three objectives. The first to fall was the giant Nordstream 2 gas pipeline project from Russian directly into Germany, in the heart of Europe. Don’t be surprised if, before long, we see the same strategy employed against China, whose response would be measured but perhaps somewhat more rigorous.

Who Has Something to Gain in This Dogfight?

Not the Russians who, due both to their own ineptitude and the rapid reaction of the surrounding NATO countries, also instrumented by the Americans, insofar as NATO is the American Frankenstein’s monster. Incidentally, the birth and rise of NATO was a massive marketing success in its own right. The military commander of NATO has always been, from day one in April of 1949, an American general. With the viral growth of NATO the Americans now pull the strings in roughly half the industrialized world, if a diminishing half, considering the rise of China.

The Ukrainians, with their country reduced to rubble and millions of their citizens being killed and exiled as we speak, are certainly not gaining anything. Who is winning something, then, and how? It’s clear that the Americans not only instigated this war with anti-Russian marketing, financing, training and materiel, but they’re winning it in terms of the prestige gained by great press on the world stage—something they haven’t seen in many decades—and sales of arms and all the rest of the paraphernalia of war, not only in the Ukraine, but around the world. Insecurity begets insecurity—and subsequent arms sales and other lucrative warmongering opportunities.

How Do They Sell That Junk?

Didn’t Australia just buy eight nuclear submarines, presumably for use against their number one trading partner: China. Someone should erect a monument to American marketing prowess in the center of Canberra. How do the Americans pull off those monumental military/commercial deals like those nuclear subs and the ludicrous American F35 Joint Strike Fighter plane. A study by the US government’s FY 2021 Annual Report reveals that half of the F35s in service could not get off the ground due to operating deficiencies. I don’t know precisely how those mega-sales of armament are closed, but my guess is that it has less to do with cost-benefit analysis than the number of American running dogs who can be bribed or threatened in a given government.

There exists in our nation today a powerful and dangerous secret cult-the cult of intelligence. Its holy men are the clandestine professionals of the Central Intelligence Agency. Its patrons and protectors are the highest officials of the federal government. Its membership extending far beyond government circles, reaches into the power centers of industry, commerce , finance , and labor.

Victor Marchetti,The CIA and the Cult of Intelligence, 1974

The Bottom Line on Ukraine

John Mearsheimer is one of my favorite American professors and strategic thinkers. I first ran across him in 2008 when he and co-writer Stephen Walt were casting about for a magazine to run a review of their just-published book, The Israel Lobby and U.S. Foreign Policy. They had no luck in the U.S., but finally managed to get it published in the U.K., in the London Review of Books. From there it bounced back to the States and was quite a hit. Mearsheimer’s definitive comment on the Ukraine mess made three weeks ago on Crux, a Youtube news channel, was brief and to the point.

The Ukraine war has only one winner: China.

John Mearsheimer on Crux

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