by Grady Hawkins

 Alt Press national affairs editor

 Ever feel like you’re living in some sort of politically twisted Alice-type Wonderland? Does it seem like a diseased madman occupies the Oval Office; his henchmen lurking in the shadows, pulling the strings? Do you feel that the media is not telling the truth, or even trying to find out whatever that might be? Is there a group of people who operate at their own pace and agenda, cutting you out of the system? Does it seem that there is little you can do, that there is no difference in the candidates and the political parties? Is your vote worthless?

 The answer to all these questions is yes.

 Welcome to Wyoming Territory in the 1880’s. There may as well be a small group of cattle barons calling all the shots. All you can do is tend to your sheep in silence. That’s right, I said sheep. They don’t even let you run cattle-just sheep. And if you complain they have a small army of Tom Horn types who will shut you up.

Think I’m some sort of conspiracy wing nut? It’s no conspiracy, its business as usual.

 Here are some of the suspects.

 In my last column I discussed what the Bush/Cheney cabal got right in their pursuit of the war in and occupation of Iraq. It seems that the only thing they got right was the location of the country. But just who else might be a part of this cabal, this junta? This is a very exclusive club. The membership roll is small, rarely changes, and no, none of us are allowed in the clubhouse. One of the oldest and more lethal members of the club is Henry Kissinger. Former national security adviser and Secretary of State, this former Harvard History professor will not go away. Here now, are Henry and some of his playmates.

 After a career in government service that resulted in the deaths of untold millions, coups, wire taps on his own staff and the devastation of Cambodia, Laos, and Viet Nam, Henry Kissinger needed a job. But mass murder was no longer in vogue in the west, and the Eastern Bloc countries could handle their own internal killings. So Henry decided to go into business for himself. Henry Kissinger Associates, Inc. was formed in 1982 in New York City. It is an ‘international consulting firm…assisting clients in identifying strategic partners and investment opportunities’. Its client list is, as a matter of course, kept secret, and its clients are also required by contract not to let on that they are indeed clients. If you suspect that some (or most) of these folks are part of the club you might be right.

Henry needed help to run things, so he hired some staff. Some of them you may have heard of: Brent Scowcroft; former national security advisor, Lawrence Eagleburger; former Deputy Secretary of State, and the most curious name of all, L Paul Bremer. Paul Bremer, you may recall was the Director of Reconstruction and Pro-Counsel of the Coalition Provisional Authority. He was the guy who ran the occupation of Iraq after the fall of Baghdad back in 2003. You also may recall that Bremer replaced Jay Garner. The first thing Paul did when he arrived in country was to undo all the good that Garner had done. His first act was fire the Iraqi army, the second was to purge all former B’aath party members from the Iraqi civil service and finally he decided to privatize the entire country.

 Paul Bremer showed the world what a tough guy he was. Just like Henry Kissinger was a tough guy.

 Henry had to have a Board of Directors for his company, so he put an ad in the local newspaper. Here are few of the fellows who got the jobs. 

 Lord Carrington; former Secretary-General of NATO, William Rogers; former Undersecretary of State for Economic Affairs, William Simon; former Secretary of the Treasury are a few of this heavy duty line-up, but the names continue. William Rogers name is interesting, because in the book “The Final Days” by Carl Bernstein and Bob Woodward, inside the Nixon administration Kissinger and Rogers were bitter enemies. Now it seems that multi-national corporate business trumps political ideology.

Saburo Okita, the former Japanese Foreign Minister and Etienne Davignon, the former European Commissioner round out the list of Board members.

These folks are indeed a formidable line-up.  But Henry wanted to expand his franchise.

In 1999, Thomas F. McLarty joined the company.  He opened an affiliate known as Kissinger- McLarty Associates on eighteenth and K Streets in Washington, DC. Mr. McLarty was White House Chief Of Staff for president William Jefferson Clinton.

 Kissinger- McLarty is a member of the New York based business organization the Council of the Americas. None other than David Rockefeller organized the Council of the Americas back in 1965.

 Henry Kissinger’s first important patron was Nelson Rockefeller, the governor of New York and Vice-President of the United States, and also David’s brother.

 What’s a multi-national worldwide global business consultant without clients worthy of all this talent? As we mentioned above, the client list is top-secret eyes only. But business guys at parties drink too much and talk too much. What’s the point of having all this action, influence and money but no one to appreciate how well connected and powerful you are? So naturally you let all this slip to the DC Madam’s call girl as she gives you a ‘massage’.

And she talks to the press, and the list gets out.

These are indeed some of the usual corporate suspects: American Express, Atlantic Richfield, Coca-Cola, Heinz, Merck, Volvo and Chase Manhattan Bank.

There are at least fifteen or so companies that remain confidential.

 Lately, Henry Kissinger has returned to the center of power. In his last book entitled ‘State of Denial” Bob Woodward revealed that during the course of the United States invasion and occupation of Iraq, Mr. Kissinger has been a regular visitor to the Bush white house. Vice –President Dick Cheney was the one who told Woodward of Henry’s visits. Cheney revealed this fact with a great deal of satisfaction. When Woodward broke the story in the book it has been revealed that Dick was not happy with Bob.

But it raises some disturbing questions. What did Kissinger have to say to Bush the Younger? We have noted that Kissinger staffer Paul Bremer changed the course of the Iraq occupation. Was this done on Kissinger’s recommendation? As Secretary of State, Kissinger believed the war in Viet Nam was winnable if and only if the United States showed considerable resolve, and its leaders stayed the course, whatever the polls and press and the people thought or wanted. This train of thought sounds all too familiar.

 Or is Mr. Kissinger suggesting way for the Bush administration to escape from their manufactured nightmare and neatly place the blame on someone else?

The loss of the Viet Nam war was blamed on the treason of a liberal press, a spineless congress and a gutless military.

Kissinger and Nixon got the credit for getting the United Sates out of Viet Nam with “peace with honor’, whatever the hell that means.

Fifty thousand American dead and thousands of wounded might disagree. 

Members of the club receive terrific benefits. The government of the United States is their source of power and wealth. It’s a revolving door to fame and fortune.

But it can have drawbacks. Mr. Kissinger may have multi-national contacts, but he is not exactly free to globe trot.

Wielding depraved realpolitik and raw power can blowback bite you on the butt. The countries of France, Brazil, Chile, Spain, Germany and Argentina want to see Henry for “questioning” about alleged war crimes.

Better stay inside the Beltway, Henry.