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On threat and threat-source: Real and imagined PDF Print E-mail

In October 1983, the United States of America invaded a Caribbean island nation. Grenada was at the time governed by the New Jewel Movement, led by Maurice Bishop. Bishop was assassinated on October 19, 1983 by troops loyal to his own Deputy Prime Minister, Bernard Coard. Bishop was no friend of the USA.

The USA determined after the fact of assassination that Coard was a threat to US interests. On October 25, 1993, the US invaded Grenada. It was called ‘Operation Urgent Fury. The New Jewel Movement was overthrown and a puppet duly installed. Reason: threat to security.

The ‘threat’ came in the form of an airstrip which Ronald Reagan thought would be used by Soviet war planes. Grenada is 133 square miles in size. It had at the time a population less than 100,000 people. Some 10,000 pigs, someone said, I remember. Possibly less than 1,000 dogs. Some cats. Maybe several thousand mosquitoes and a similar number of flies. A threat to the United States of America, we were told.

‘Threat’ is an often used reference for invasion and it’s been used so many times that it has got boring and funny. Not so for the invaded, let me add. The United States is probably the most shit-scared nation on earth, considering how frequently and how violently that country has invaded by and large peaceful nations over the past 100 years.

Grenada was a threat. Oh dear!

Then we had the ‘threat’ of Iraq harbouring ‘Weapons of Mass Destruction’ (WMD). More than half a million people have perished in the unsuccessful efforts to discover a single such device.

Let’s put it all down to ‘cultural preference’. Maybe the US has a cultural fascination with threats. They are wont, by cultural gene, to see threats where there are none and to kill thousands and thousands of people while swishing sword and spraying bullets on phantoms.

The latest ‘funny’ to hit the political headlines is the somber pronouncement from Washington that Wikileaks is a ‘global threat’. I don’t know when Hillary Clinton assumed the role of global spokesperson, but I haven’t really heard the ‘globe’ expressing displeasure about Wikileaks. She is upset that those exposed will be targeted by the bogeyman or some such creature. Wikileaks ‘risks lives’, Washington screams. Whose lives? Where? When? Wikileaks has been around for four years and Clinton cannot name one person who has suffered a pinprick of harm outside of embarrassment they ought to have been ready to suffer when they did the down-and-dirty.

As Wikileaks founder, Julian Assange points out, Washington has been two-tongued about the truth of abuses published by his outfit. The US pooh-poohs Wikileaks, saying ‘there is nothing of importance’ even as they scream ‘You’ll risk lives, compromise national security and endanger troops’. Can’t be both. Assange therefore asks, ‘which is it?’ What’s really funny is the fact that the Obamas, Clintons and others who appear to be wetting their pants thanks to Wikileaks, are themselves even-as-we-speak endangering the lives of hundreds of thousands of people in various parts of the world and actually killing hundreds.
Here’s a choice quote from Assange which no one in the Evil Empire led by the US and UK have refuted:

‘US Secretary of Defence Robert Gates admitted in a letter to the US congress that no sensitive intelligence sources or methods had been compromised by the Afghan war logs disclosure. The Pentagon stated there was no evidence the WikiLeaks reports had led to anyone being harmed in Afghanistan. NATO in Kabul told CNN it couldn’t find a single person who needed protecting. The Australian Department of Defence said the same. No Australian troops or sources have been hurt by anything we have published.’

They have not refuted and probably cannot counter the following startling facts revealed by US diplomatic cables: 1. The US asked its diplomats to steal personal human material and information from UN officials and human rights groups, including DNA, fingerprints, iris scans, credit card numbers, internet passwords and ID photos, in violation of international treaties. 2. King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia asked the US to attack Iran. 3. Officials in Jordan and Bahrain want Iran’s nuclear programme stopped by any means available. 4. Britain’s Iraq inquiry was fixed to protect “US interests” (ref the ongoing Chilcott Inquiry). 5. Sweden is a covert member of NATO and US intelligence sharing is kept from parliament. 6. The US is playing hardball to get other countries to take freed detainees from Guantanamo Bay. 7. Barack Obama agreed to meet the Slovenian President only if Slovenia took a prisoner. 8. Australia’s Pacific neighbour Kiribati was offered millions of dollars to accept detainees.

A bunch of rogue nations that declare war on whim and disguise real intent (securing access to resources and taking control of markets) as response to (imagined, nay constructed) threat, will naturally earn the wrath of those they wrong.

If the Clintons of this world were worried about lives being risked and national security being compromised and need to identify source of threat asap, all they need to do is rush to the loo.

I am sure most washrooms in the offices they inhabit come equipped with a mirror.

Curtsey The Nation. 12.12.2010

Malinda Seneviratne is a freelance writer who can be reached at This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it

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