Saturday, July 14, 2012

NPR Propaganda Watch. Faux Debate on U.S. Role in Syria.

John Walsh, March 15, 2012
Print This | Share This | Comment   

Yesterday (3/14) NPR’s “All Things Considered” ran a “discussion” about Syria and the U.S. All options were not on the table – at least not the anti-interventionist option.

Melissa Block hosted three guests seriatim: the aptly named Anne-Marie Slaughter, former “director of planning” at the State Department. Paul Wolfowitz, architect of the criminal war on Iraq and Daniel Serwer, a former U.S. “special envoy” and “coordinator” for the Bosnian Federation. How is that for a broad spectrum of views?

Going first, Slaughter suggested that “no-kill” zones be established but that plan quickly morphed into the need for a supporting air campaign by the U.S. and NATO and “defensive” arms to the pro-Western forces in Syria. When Melissa Block inquired about the nature of a “defensive” arms, Slaughter conceded that there was no way to prevent the arms from being used in other ways, “revenge attacks” and “offensive actions” in Block’s terms.

For Slaughter time is of the essence, because there is “brutality on an extraordinary scale” in Syria (There are indeed 7000 dead in Syria – thousands on each side of the civil war there.) Enter the second guest Paul Wolfowitz whose Iraq war has resulted in the deaths of 1.4 million Iraqis and the displacement of 4 million. That, however, is not to be considered “brutality on an extraordinary scale.” Of course the U.S. was not killing its own people in Iraq but other people – which seems to make it OK. Block and her editors apparently were clueless about the irony of this juxtaposition of Slaughter’s claim and Wolfowitz’s appearance.

What was Wolfowitz’s prescription for Syria? “Defensive weapons.” Where had I heard that before? But Wolfowitz wants more US control over the weapons saying: “Hamas, which used to be in bed with Assad, has now distanced itself from the Assad regime. I’m sure the bad guys are figuring out how they can help the opposition so that they can have a position later.” Hamas the democratically elected government of all Palestinians and still in control of Gaza, daily under an assault by Israel (backed by the U.S.) is of course one of the “bad guys,” the infantile designation for official enemies, at least weak ones. Block concluded by raising what lessons Iraq holds for the present situation in Syria. And Wolfowitz had the answer. The problem was that the US did not invade earlier, in 1991, rather than 2003. No challenge from Block on that one.

So far two guests – one opinion. Surely the third guest, Mr. Serwer must be an anti-interventionist. Early on he made his position quite clear: “I don’t believe that there is a military solution in Syria without a massive U.S. effort to defeat the air defenses, the artillery, the tanks of the Syrian army and I see no will in Washington to do that kind of thing at the moment.”

Serwer simply says he opposes military action because it must be big and costly and there is no will “at the moment” in Washington to do so. That lack of will is due to the fact that the average American is fed up with the endless wars in the Middle East. Serwer continues: “You know, if you take military action, I think you have to think about taking serious military action. And serious military action would be aimed at decapitating this regime. The problem is you don’t know what comes after because there is no really consolidated opposition political structure.” Like Wolfowitz Serwer is concerned about “the bad guys.” Again no opposition to intervention but there is concern that once the dogs of war are unleashed, the new rulers may be one of “the bad guys.”

Serwer tells us that regime change could be effected if only Russia and China would go along. But Russia and China saw what happened in Libya, with “humanitarian” cover used to plunge Libya into an orgy of death and destruction; they are unlikely to be fooled again. So Serwer advises the “opposition” to bang on pans in the middle of the night.

Three interventionists, with one, Serwer, opining that intervention is impractical now so that we have to hope we can effect regime change through diplomatic means. The idea that we have no right to intervene in Syria is not even discussed. The anti-interventionist view is not even considered. Humanitarian Imperialism holds sway in the corridors of NPR.

NPR is one of the main opinion shapers for the intelligentsia in the US, and hence a very valuable asset for the Empire. What is an anti-interventionist to do?   This writer has stopped contributing.  If I want to listen to the occasional decent show (Car Talk is the only thing that comes to mind.), then I take heart in the fact that my tax dollars more than cover that one hour a week.

John V. Walsh can be reached at

Sadly NPRcheck is going silent.

As journalism it is worthless: nothing more than an echo chamber for the views of the powerful interests and forces that control this country - large US and multinational corporations, departments and agencies of US military and foreign policy, and the national Republican and Democratic parties, etc.  As an organization, NPR never challenges or confronts the myth of US goodness in foreign policy, the belief in US exceptionalism, the supposed benefits of capitalism and market ideologies.


Amnesty's Shilling for US Wars

By Ann Wright, Coleen Rowley, Consortium News

20 June 12

he new Executive Director of Amnesty International USA – Suzanne Nossel – is a recent U.S. government insider. So it’s a safe bet that AI’s decision to seize upon a topic that dovetailed with American foreign policy interests, "women’s rights in Afghanistan," at the NATO Conference last month in Chicago came directly from her.

Nossel was hired by AI in January 2012. In her early career, Nossel worked for Ambassador Richard Holbrooke under the Clinton Administration at the United Nations. Most recently, she served as Deputy Assistant Secretary for International Organizations at the U.S. Department of State, where she was responsible for multilateral human rights, humanitarian affairs, women’s issues, public diplomacy, press and congressional relations.

Amnesty International's "NATO: Keep the Progress Going" poster at a Chicago bus stop.

She also played a leading role in U.S. engagement at the U.N. Human Rights Council (where her views about the original Goldstone Report on behalf of Palestinian women did not quite rise to the same level of concerns for the women in countries that U.S.-NATO has attacked militarily).

Nossel would have worked for and with Hillary Clinton, Madeleine Albright, Samantha Power and Susan Rice, and undoubtedly helped them successfully implement their "Right to Protect (R2P)" – otherwise known as "humanitarian intervention” – as well as the newly created "Atrocity Prevention Board."

This cornerstone of President Barack Obama’s foreign policy (which has served mainly to rationalize the launching of war on Libya) is now being hauled out to call for U.S.-NATO military intervention in Syria.

"Smart Power" = smart wars?

In fact, Nossel is herself credited as having coined the term “Smart Power,” which embraces the United States ’ use of military power as well as other forms of “soft power,” an approach which Secretary of State Hillary Clinton announced at her confirmation as the new basis of State Department policy.

An excerpt from Nossel’s 2004 paper on “Smart Power” published in the Council on Foreign Relations’ Foreign Affairs magazine sounds a lot like Samantha Power’s (and also traces back to Madeleine Albright’s) theories:

"To advance from a nuanced dissent to a compelling vision, progressive policymakers should turn to the great mainstay of twentieth-century U.S. foreign policy: liberal internationalism, which posits that a global system of stable liberal democracies would be less prone to war.

"Washington, the theory goes, should thus offer assertive leadership — diplomatic, economic, and not least, military [our emphasis] — to advance a broad array of goals: self-determination, human rights, free trade, the rule of law, economic development, and the quarantine and elimination of dictators and weapons of mass destruction (WMD)."

Perhaps the AI’s hiring of a State Department shill as executive director of its U.S. affiliate was merely coincidental to how/why its "NATO Shadow Summit " so closely mimicked the CIA’s latest propaganda assault, but….

The "CIA Red Cell," a group of analysts assigned to think "outside the box" to anticipate emerging challenges, was right to worry in March 2010 when the State Department’s Bureau of Intelligence and Research (INR) found that 80 percent of French and German citizens were opposed to continued deployment of their countries’ militaries in the U.S.-NATO war in Afghanistan.

Even though public apathy had, up to that point, enabled French and German politicians to "ignore their voters" and steadily increase their governments’ troop contributions to Afghanistan, the CIA’s newly-created think tank was concerned that a forecasted increase in NATO casualties in the upcoming "bloody summer … could become a tipping point in converting passive opposition into active calls for immediate withdrawal."

In a "confidential" memo, the "Red Cell" wrote: "The Afghanistan mission’s low public salience has allowed French and German leaders to disregard popular opposition and steadily increase their troop contributions to the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF). Berlin and Paris currently maintain the third and fourth highest ISAF troop levels, despite the opposition of 80 percent of German and French respondents to increased ISAF deployments, according to INR polling in fall 2009.

"Public Apathy Enables Leaders To Ignore Voters …

"Only a fraction (0.1-1.3 percent) of French and German respondents identified ‘Afghanistan’ as the most urgent issue facing their nation in an open-ended question, according to the same polling. These publics ranked ‘stabilizing Afghanistan’ as among the lowest priorities for US and European leaders, according to polls by the German Marshall Fund (GMF) over the past two years.

"According to INR polling in the fall of 2009, the view that the Afghanistan mission is a waste of resources and ‘not our problem’ was cited as the most common reason for opposing ISAF by German respondents and was the second most common reason by French respondents. But the ‘not our problem’ sentiment also suggests that, so for, sending troops to Afghanistan is not yet on most voters’ radar.

"But Casualties Could Precipitate Backlash

"If some forecasts of a bloody summer in Afghanistan come to pass, passive French and German dislike of their troop presence could turn into active and politically potent hostility. The tone of previous debate suggests that a spike in French or German casualties or in Afghan civilian casualties could become a tipping point in converting passive opposition into active calls for immediate withdrawal."

The CIA "Special Memorandum" went a step further, inviting "a CIA expert on strategic communication and analysts following public opinion" to suggest "information campaigns" that State Department polls showed likely to sway Western Europeans.

The "Red Cell" memo was quickly leaked, however, furnishing a remarkable window into how U.S. government propaganda is designed to work upon NATO citizenry to maintain public support for the euphemistically titled "International Security Assistance Force" (ISAF) waging war on Afghans. Here are some of the CIA propaganda expert’s suggestions:

"Messaging that dramatizes the potential adverse consequences of an ISAF defeat for Afghan civilians could leverage French (and other European) guilt for abandoning them. The prospect of the Taliban rolling back hard-won progress on girls’ education could provoke French indignation, become a rallying point for France’s largely secular public, and give voters a reason to support a good and necessary cause despite casualties. …

"Outreach initiatives that create media opportunities for Afghan women to share their stories with French, German, and other European women could help to overcome pervasive skepticism among women in Western Europe toward the ISAF mission. … Media events that feature testimonials by Afghan women would probably be most effective if broadcast on programs that have large and disproportionately female audiences."

‘NATO: Keep the Progress Going!’

Amnesty International struck similar themes in announcements posted online as well as billboard advertisements on Chicago bus stops, telling "NATO: Keep the Progress Going!" beckoned us to find out more on Sunday, May 20, 2012, the day thousands of activists marched in Chicago in protest of NATO’s wars.

The billboard seemed to answer a recent Huffington Post article, "Afghanistan: The First Feminist War?"

"The feminist victory may be complete in America, but on the international stage it’s not doing so well with three quarters of the world’s women still under often-severe male domination. Afghanistan is an extreme case in point in what might be termed the first feminist war … a war that now may not be won even if Hillary Clinton dons a flack jacket and shoulders an M16 on the front lines. Still, since the Bush Administration to the present America ‘s top foreign policy office has been held by women … women who have promised not to desert their Afghan sisters."

Our curiosity was further piqued because we consider ourselves to be women’s rights and human rights proponents and also due to our own prior federal careers in intelligence and military. (Colonel Wright is retired from the State Department/US military and Rowley is from the FBI.)

So along with a few other anti-war activists, we packed into a taxi to head to the Chicago hotel where Amnesty International’s "Shadow Summit" featuring former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright and other female foreign relations officials was being held. We happened to carry our "NATO bombs are not humanitarian"; "NATO Kills Girls" and anti-drone bombing posters that we had with us for the march later that day.

As we arrived, an official-looking black car dropped off Melanne Verveer, U.S. Ambassador-at-Large for Global Women’s Issues, who was to be a main speaker (on the first panel, along with former Secretary Albright; U.S. Rep. Jan Schakowsky, D-Illinois; and Afifa Azim, General Director and Co-Founder, Afghan Women’s Network; along with Moderator Gayle Tzemach Lemmon, Deputy Director of the Council on Foreign Relations’ Women and Foreign Policy Program).

Verveer cast a cold glance at us and would not answer Ann Wright’s questions as she scurried into the hotel with her aides surrounding her and us following behind. At first the hotel security guards tried to turn us away but we reminded the registration desk the Summit was advertised as "Free Admissions" and that some of us were members of Amnesty International.

So they let us register and attend as long as we promised to leave our signs outside and not disrupt the speakers. The hotel conference room was about half full. We stayed long enough to hear the opening remarks and the moderator’s first questions of Albright and the other speakers on the first panel.

All generally linked the protection and participation of Afghan women in government as well as the progress made in educating Afghan women to the eventual peace and security of the country as envisioned by the new strategic "partnership" agreement that Obama had just signed with Afghan President Hamid Karzai.

Ms. Verveer said Afghan women do not want to be seen as "victims" but are now rightfully nervous about their future. When we saw that audience participation was going to be limited to questions selected from the small note cards being collected, we departed, missing the second panel as well as kite-flying for women’s rights.

We noted, even in that short time, however, how easy it was for these U.S. government officials to use the "good and necessary cause" of women’s rights to get the audience into the palm of their collective hand — just as the CIA’s "strategic communication" expert predicted!

Secretary Albright?

Not everyone was hoodwinked however. Even before the "Summit" was held, Amnesty realized it had a PR problem as a result of its billboard advertisement touting progress in Afghanistan. An Amnesty official tried to put forth a rather lame defense blaming an accidental poor choice of wording.

But many readers (and AI members) posted critical comments and questions, including concerns about Albright’s involvement given her infamous defense of Iraqi sanctions in the 1990s, which were estimated to have caused the deaths of a half million Iraqi children, with the comment "we think the price is worth it."

Under the blogger’s explanation: "We Get It / Human Rights Now," there were comments like these:

"Could someone from AI please explain why Madeleine Albright was invited to participate in this event? We (and especially those of us who are familiar with AI) should all be able to understand that the wording on the poster was a genuine, albeit damaging, mistake. But why Ms. Albright?"

"The posters are pro-NATO and play into prevailing tropes about so called ‘humanitarian intervention’ via ‘think of the women & children’ imagery. The posters & the forum that includes Albright are neither slight slips nor without context. AI is coping heat because they have miss-stepped dramatically. There is NOTHING subtle about either the imagery nor the message!

"It is not a case of ‘oh sorry we didn’t realize it it could be interpreted that way!’ They used pro Nato imagery & slogans ahead of & during a controversial summit that has thousands protesting in the streets. Tell me again how that is not taking sides?

“They asked a notorious apologist for mass murder of children to speak on the right of women and children…tell me again: how is that not taking sides. So it is absolutely reasonable for past supporters (and board members like myself) to be asking how it is that Amnesty USA so lost its bearings they could make a critical SERIES of errors like this?"

Of course the defensive AI blog author never answered the numerous questions asking why Amnesty had chosen Madeleine Albright as their main speaker. So we will venture an answer that probably lies in the fact that all of the powerful feminist-war hawks who have risen to become Secretary of State (or are waiting in the wings) are now taking their lead from the ruthless Grand Dame who paved the way for them, Madeleine Albright — (see Coleen Rowley’s recent articles: "Obama’s New ‘Atrocity Prevention Board’: Reasons for Skepticism" and "Militarization of the Mothers: You’ve Come a Long Way, Baby, from Mother’s Day for Peace").

It’s also possible the highest ranks of the feminist wing of military interventionism (i.e. Madeleine Albright, Condi Rice, Hillary Clinton, Susan Rice, Samantha Power, et al) are so passionate and hubristic about the nobility of their goal and "Amercan exceptionalism" that some have simply succumbed to a kind of almost religious (blind faith) type fervor.

The Road to Hell

Nossel’s and Albright’s theories are flawed in many ways but suffice it to say that democracies are actually not less prone to war. A long list of "democracies" – including Nazi Germany, the Roman Empire, the United Kingdom, France and the United States itself – disprove this assertion.

In any event, the U.S. has been terribly hypocritical in its support of "democracies" in foreign countries, often toppling or attempting to topple them (i.e. Iran’s Mossadeqh, Guatemala’s Arbenz, Chile’s Allende) in order to gain easier control of a foreign country through an allied dictatorship.

No one is going to argue that the goals of humanitarianism, preventing atrocities and furthering women’s rights around the world are not "good and necessary" (in the words of the CIA strategic communications expert). We would go so far as to say these ARE truly noble causes!

Testimonials about human rights’ abuse are often true and fundamentalist regimes’ treatment of women seems to vary only in degrees of horrible. But while it’s true that many women lack rights in Afghanistan, some would argue that it’s conveniently true. And that the best lies are always based on a certain amount of truth.

The devil, however, lies in the details of promoting equality and accomplishing humanitarianism. Most importantly the ends, even noble ends, never justify wrongful means. In fact, when people such as Samantha Power decide to bomb the village Libya , to save it, it will backfire on a pragmatic level.

It must be realized that it is the nobility of the U.S.-NATO’s motivation that – as CIA propaganda department has advised – should be relied upon to convince otherwise good-hearted people (especially women) to support (or at least tolerate) war and military occupation (now known to encompass the worst of war crimes, massacres of women and children, torture, cutting off body parts of those killed, as well as increasing mental illness, self-destructive behavior and suicides among U.S. soldiers and the corresponding cover-ups of all such horrible means).

In the decades after Vietnam, a number of military scholars identified declining American public support for that war as the main factor responsible for the U.S. "losing" Vietnam. One lesson learned and quickly implemented was to get rid of the military draft and put the wars on a credit card so fewer citizens would pay attention.

Some control also had to be gained over the type of free media (that led to trusted TV anchor Walter Cronkite broadcasting his public souring on the Vietnam War). A whole series of war propaganda systems, from planting retired generals as "talking heads" on TV to the assistant to Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld deciding to "embed the media," have worked pretty well to maintain the necessary level of war momentum in mainstream media and amongst public opinion.

But now, with American polls approaching the same problematic levels as those in Europe cited by the "CIA Red Cell," we suddenly see major human rights organizations like Amnesty International (as well as others) applauding Obama’s (and the feminist war-hawks’) "Atrocity Prevention Board."

Such sleight of hand seems to work to work even better amongst political partisans. By the way, it should be noted that Congress may allow these Pentagon propagandists to target American citizens through the National Defense Authorization Act of 2013. Should we connect the dots?

There are some clear lines where the laudable need to further human rights should not be twisted into justifying harsh economic sanctions that kill hundreds of thousands of children or, even worse, "shock and awe" aerial bombing that takes the lives of the women and children the "humanitarian" propagandists say they want to help.

Madeleine Albright’s response about the deaths of a half million children on 60 Minutes, that "the price was worth it," illustrates the quintessential falsity of what ethicists call "act utilitarianism" or concocting fictional happy outcomes to justify the terrible wrongful means.

It also seems that a human rights NGO, in this case Amnesty International, which had gained a solid reputation and hence the trust of those it has helped through the years, will be jeopardized in aligning itself with the U.S. Secretary of State and NATO.

This is exactly how the Nobel Peace Prize got corrupted, aligning itself with the U.S. Secretary of State and NATO, which is why Nobel laureate Mairead Maguire withdrew from the Nobel Peace forum held in Chicago during NATO.

Good NGOS and non-profits that want to maintain the trust in their humanitarian work tend to be very careful to maintain their independence from any government, let alone any war-making government. When NGOs, even good ones, become entwined with the U.S./NATO war machine, don’t they risk losing their independent credibility?

Ann Wright is a 29-year U.S. Army/Army Reserve Colonel and a 16-year U.S. diplomat who served in Nicaragua, Grenada, Somalia, Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan, Sierra Leone, Micronesia, Afghanistan and Mongolia. She resigned in 2003 in opposition to the Iraq war. She returned to Afghanistan in 2007 and 2010 on fact-finding missions.

Coleen Rowley, a FBI special agent for almost 24 years, was legal counsel to the FBI Field Office in Minneapolis from 1990 to 2003. She wrote a "whistleblower" memo in May 2002 and testified to the Senate Judiciary on some of the FBI’s pre-9/11 failures. She retired at the end of 2004, and now writes and speaks on ethical decision-making and balancing civil liberties with the need for effective investigation.



Posted on July 12, 2012 

Finian Cunningham
The major Western mainstream media outlets have been running a “shock and awe” propaganda offensive against the Syrian government of President Bashar Al Assad for nearly 16 months. The misinformation has been unrelenting, monolithic, unverified, one-sided and, frankly, increasingly preposterous.

With the suppression of mounting facts that Western governments are waging a covert war of aggression in Syria, the Western public is right to treat the conventional media sources with skepticism and outright contempt. Such media are seen as “politicized” and “unreliable”, serving a naked imperialist agenda for Western regime change. In a word, they are damaged goods.
This is where a segment of the so-called alternative media can play a valuable propaganda function for Western powers. Because such media are supposed to be independent, critical, non-corporate, the public tends to consider their reports as objective and unbiased.  One such “alternative” news service is “Democracy Now” hosted by Amy Goodman. Goodman is seen as something of a campaigning critical journalist shedding the light of truth on the depredations of the US government, corporations and the Pentagon. But a closer look at what Goodman’s “Democracy Now” is reporting on Syria shows that the purported critical broadcaster has become a purveyor of Western government propaganda. While the mainstream media’s propaganda function is obvious to the informed public, Goodman’s Democracy plays a more subtle role. Camouflaged with the trappings of critical, independent journalism, “Democracy Now” serves to sow powerful seeds of misinformation in a way that the “compromised” mainstream media cannot.

This misinformation from “Democracy Now” is valuable to the ruling elite because to many of its readers it is not seen as misinformation.

Rather, the “news” on “Democracy Now” is viewed as reliable and representing the views of the anti-war, anti-imperialist constituency. In this way, Goodman is a valuable asset to Washington and Wall Street because her broadcasts can serve to disorient and undermine a constituency that is normally opposed to Western warmongering and imperialism. Many of the subscribers to “Democracy Now” may see through the misinformation. Many, though, may not, and therefore will become embedded with the imperialist agenda. The fact that Democracy Now ratings appear to be holding up would indicate that a lot of its followers are oblivious to the insidious effect of such misinformation. As such, Democracy Now is more valuable to the powers-that-be than, say, the New York Times or the Financial Times. “Democracy Now” ensures that the agenda of the powerful becomes infiltrated in a constituency that would otherwise be opposed to that agenda.

First, let’s recap on the mainstream propaganda offensive against Syria.

Since mid-March 2011, when violence was initially reported in that country, the Western mainstream television, radio and press studiously ignored the evidence of covert foreign-backed subversion and terrorism. Instead these outlets have sought to portray the protests as part of the pro-democracy Arab Spring popular movements that were seen in Egypt, Tunisia, Yemen and Bahrain. The mainstream media have run saturation coverage to demonise the government in Damascus as a “brutal, authoritarian regime” that is cracking down mercilessly on its civilian population demanding democratic reforms. The narrative is monolithic in the major media outlets on both sides of the Atlantic. Whether the New York Times, Washington Post, CNN, or the Financial Times, Guardian, Independent, Le Monde, BBC, ITN, the Irish national broadcaster RTE or the Middle East’s much-vaunted Al Jazeera – the “story” on Syria is uncannily uniform. A noble, civilian mass-based movement is being savagely crushed by a tin-eared dictator, so the story goes.

Every possible smear campaign against the Assad government has been indulged in and indeed fabricated. From the alleged killing of innocent civilians by the national armed forces, to the perpetration of massacres by pro-government militias, to self-inflicted car bombs in urban centres by Assad secret services, to the feckless shopping habits of the president’s wife. Russia Today, Press TV, Der Spiegel and Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, the Vatican News Service (Agenzia Fides), to name a few, have been honorable exceptions in mainstream media journalism for conveying a more accurate picture of what is really happening inside Syria – showing that “protesters” are far from peaceful civilians, and much of the violence is actually stemming from Western, Turkish and Arab-backed mercenaries that have infiltrated the country. As the facts of US and NATO-backed violence in Syria become more transparent and harder to conceal owing to the sheer volume of covert involvement, the Western public has rightly become more skeptical about what the mainstream media outlets are telling them. Indeed, the blatant misinformation and lies that are being sold as journalism is increasingly seen as contemptible.

The Houla massacre on the 24 May is a case in point. The BBC and other mainstream media outlets have been shown to be outrageously wrong in their initial rush to blame the atrocity on Syrian government forces when the evidence has slowly emerged that it was most likely the grisly work of Western-backed mercenaries.

It is all the more disquieting when a supposedly informed, alternative news service, Democracy Now, peddles such blatant misinformation – more than six weeks after the massacre occurred and after evidence has been reported that points convincingly to Western-backed perpetrators. On 9 July, Goodman broadcast an interview with Rafif Jouejati, a spokesperson for a Syrian opposition group called the Syrian Local Coordination Committees, based in Washington DC. Despite the mounting evidence of Western, Turkish and Saudi/Qatari covert operations, Goodman gave her guest a free rein to regurgitate the litany of mainstream media calumnies on Syria. Without a hint of scepticism from Goodman, her guest said:

“The bottom line is that the majority of the country is engaged in a popular revolution for freedom, for democracy, for dignity… We have mountains of evidence indicating that [Assad’s] armed forces have been engaged in systematic torture, rampant detentions, massacres across the country.” 

Really? The majority of the country engaged in a popular revolution for freedom, democracy and dignity? That sounds more like the fanciful imagination of someone safely based in Washington DC. By contrast, sources in Syria have confirmed that people are terrified by Western-armed gangs running amok in their communities, kidnapping, murdering, evicting families from their homes and burning down business premises. According to the leaked Arab League Observer Mission Report, which had initially been commissioned by the Arab League at Washington’s request:

In Homs, Idlib and Hama, the Observer Mission witnessed acts of violence being committed against Government forces and civilians that resulted in several deaths and injuries. Examples of those acts include the bombing of a civilian bus, killing eight persons and injuring others, including women and children, and the bombing of a train carrying diesel oil. In another incident in Homs, a police bus was blown up, killing two police officers. A fuel pipeline and some small bridges were also bombed. “

“Such incidents include the bombing of buildings, trains carrying fuel, vehicles carrying diesel oil and explosions targeting the police, members of the media and fuel pipelines. Some of those attacks have been carried out by the Free Syrian Army and some by other armed opposition groups.” (League of Arab States Observer Mission to Syria, Report of the Head of the League of Arab States Observer Mission to Syria for the period from 24 December 2011 to 18 January 2012, 

Ironically, these fact-finding observations of the AL Observer Mission , went against the interests of its Western sponsors. It was barely reported by the mainstream media)

According to the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung (FAZ):

“Those killed were almost exclusively from families belonging to Houla’s Alawi and Shia minorities. Over 90% of Houla’s population are Sunnis. Several dozen members of a family were slaughtered, which had converted from Sunni to Shia Islam. Members of the Shomaliya, an Alawi family, were also killed, as was the family of a Sunni member of the Syrian parliament who is regarded as a collaborator. Immediately following the massacre, the perpetrators are supposed to have filmed their victims and then presented them as Sunni victims in videos posted on the internet.”

(Neue Erkenntnisse zu Getöteten von Hula.Abermals Massaker in Syrien, Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, June 7, 2012 translated from the German,

The FAZ report quoted above echoes eyewitness accounts collected from refugees from the Houla region by members of the Monastery of St. James in Qara, Syria. According to monastery sources cited by the Dutch Middle East expert Martin Janssen, armed rebels murdered “entire Alawi families” in the village of Taldo in the Houla region.

Also of significance is the report of Der Spiegel (March 29, 2012) entitled “An Executioner for Syria’s Rebels Tells His Story”. A system of “burial brigades” for those executed confirms an organized process of mass-murder and extra-judicial killings. This single “burial brigade”, according  to the executioner’s testimony, was responsible for the arbitrary execution of 350-400 people including “prisoners” and “traitors”.  The “traitors” are Sunni civilians within the occupied urban and rural areas, who express their opposition to the rule of terror of the Free Syrian Army (FSA):

“Since last summer, we have executed slightly fewer than 150 men, which represents about 20 percent of our prisoners,”
says Abu Rami. … But the executioners of Homs have been busier with traitors within their own ranks than with prisoners of war. “If we catch a Sunni spying, or if a citizen betrays the revolution, we make it quick,” says the fighter. According to Abu Rami, Hussein’s burial brigade has put between 200 and 250 traitors to death since the beginning of the uprising.” (Der Spiegel, March 29, 2012)

The Vatican News Service Agenzia Fides largely confirms that the Western backed  “opposition forces” rather than the Al Assad government were responsible for countless atrocities:
In Homs, called the “martyred city”, “opposition forces have occupied two areas, Diwan Al Bustan and Hamidieh, where there are all the churches and bishoprics,” the Archimandrite told Fides. “The picture for us – he continues – is utter desolation: the church of Mar Elian is half destroyed and that of Our Lady of Peace is still occupied by the rebels. Christian homes are severely damaged due to the fighting and completely emptied of their inhabitants, who fled without taking anything. The area of Hamidieh is still shelter to armed groups independent of each other, heavily armed and bankrolled by Qatar and Saudi Arabia. All Christians (138,000) have fled to Damascus and Lebanon, while others took refuge in the surrounding countryside.

The Syrian soldiers in fact, continue to face foreign fighters, mercenaries Libyans, Lebanese militants from the Gulf, Afghans, Turks. “The Sunni Salafist militants – says the Bishop – continue to commit crimes against civilians, or to recruit fighters with force. The fanatical Sunni extremists are fighting a holy war proudly, especially against the Alawites. When terrorists seek to control the religious identity of a suspect, they ask him to cite the genealogies dating back to Moses. And they ask to recite a prayer that the Alawites removed. The Alawites have no chance to get out alive.” (Agenzia Fides, Vatican News Service, 4 June 2012)

Overblown Casualty Figures, Blamed on the Government
Goodman indulged in the overblown casualty figures from dubious Syrian opposition sources as if they were verifiable accurate data. She even sounded like Hillary Clinton in talking up the “defection” of the hapless former Syrian Brigadier General Manaf Tlass as “significant” when informed sources discount that news as a minor irrelevance.

In the interview between Goodman and her guest (whom sources describe as belonging to a family formerly aligned with the Syrian government), Bashar Al Assad was portrayed as an unhinged leader who is in denial over massacres – massacres, as we have noted, that have most likely been carried out by Western-backed death squads as confirmed by numerous reports.

Preposterously, Assad was described as guilty of much worse crimes than former Egyptian and Libyan rulers Hosni Mubarak and Muammar Gaddafi. Then the “alternative” Democracy Now broadcast this statement from the supposed opposition spokesperson as if it were normal discourse:

“I would like to think that we will proceed with full prosecution in the International Criminal Court. I think the longer this issue goes on and the more violence he [Assad] commits, the more likely he will wish to have a fate such as Gaddafi’s.” 

Recall that the Libyan leader was lynched on a roadside by a NATO-directed mob, and sodomised with a knife before being shot dead. It may also be recalled that “Democracy Now” gave prominent broadcasts supporting NATO’s intervention in Libya and justifying the criminal subversion of that country. Going by the latest coverage on Syria, Democracy Now is acting once again under a “progressive” cloak as a propaganda tool for US-led imperialist intervention. Given the misplaced respect among many of the public seeking independent, alternative, accurate news and analysis, this insidious role of Democracy Now is reprehensible. May it be suggested, in the name of media transparency, that the programme be aptly renamed “Imperialism Now”.

Democracy Now, Libya, Syria and its continued pro-intervention stance.

from Edifying Debate

Imperialism is desperately trying to expand itself by making Americans more poor, so Goodman’s support of imperialism in Libya must be checked. I am writing this not at all to embarrass Amy Goodman but to reach a greater understanding of how the American state can and will influence “independent” media to become no longer “independent” but polluted and eventually meaningless.
I sincerely hope Amy Goodman can respond to my query about her coverage of Libya and not sink any further in to the polluted mainstream of Americanism. –RF

From BAR

Is the independent media movement's flagship radio-TV show Democracy Now! pushing the State Department and Pentagon line on Libya instead of “going where the silence is” and telling the truth without fear or favor? Are its Libyan correspondents embedded with the US-backed Libyan rebels to such an extent that they have minimized and failed to follow up persistent reports of ethnic cleansing in Libya or investigate whether alleged “mercenaries” ever existed or Khadaffi's “massacres” ever took place?  - Are Democracy Now!'s Libyan Correspondents Feeding Us the State Department and Pentagon Line on Libya?

I've been a devout listener for about 10 years and I've urged others to listen/watch Democracy Now. But DN's blatant, outrageous, pro-US Libya propaganda in today's edition has finally put me over the top. I'm finally coming to terms with the sad fact that I'd better not trust Democracy Now any more for basic honesty or integrity.

All those maudlin voices in Tripoli, supposedly celebrating their new US-brand "freedom"! Were they hired by a PR agency or have they just been badly fooled? Do any of them know the real story behind this occupation and bombing campaign, for whose benefit it's being waged, or for that matter the actual state of the campaign? Do any of them know what is being stolen from them?

No names, no background checks, no questioning, no investigation! Just fluffy celebration! What has befallen my beloved Democracy Now? Ruppert Murdoch must be laughing his head off.

For me, this is a grave occasion. Unless there's a drastic change in the right direction very, very soon, I feel obligated to advise our WZBC listeners specifically to be wary of the honesty or integrity of anything they see or hear on Democracy Now. I will also need to make this adjustment on our website and on our handouts, all of which have been promoting Democracy Now.

Stan Robinson, co-producer Truth and Justice Radio, WZBC 90.3FM Newton MA (see more here)

Saturday, May 26, 2012

Charles Taylor a CIA Informant

The Need to Retool Liberia's Relationship With the U.S.

By Robtel Neajai Pailey, 

20 January 2012

Liberian Observer

Two very significant and interconnected events happened this week in Liberia - President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf was inaugurated for a second term with a subdued opposition attending the ceremonies, and former Liberian President Charles Taylor was implicated in a Boston Globe article for serving as a CIA informant beginning in the early 1980s and spanning many decades.

Taylor, Taylor, How Did Your Garden Grow?

America's facilitation of Taylor's escape from a maximum security prison in Boston in 1985 - while he was facing extradition to Liberia for allegedly stealing US$1 million from the General Services Agency, which he headed during President Samuel Kanyon Doe's regime - was always rumored but never corroborated. I remember covering the first day of Taylor's trial in the Hague for Pambazuka News, and interviewing Stephen Rapp, the then chief prosecutor, about whether or not his investigations into Taylor's exploits in Libya and Sierra Leone ever unearthed the real causes of his 'escape' from the maximum security prison in Massachusetts.

Rapp was tight-lipped, yet appeared confounded by this mystery as well. When Taylor eventually confessed during the Hague trial that he strolled out of prison after a guard conveniently opened his cell one night, we all knew that something was awry: "I am calling it my release because I didn't break out," Taylor testified. "I did not pay any money. I did not know the guys who picked me up. I was not hiding [afterwards]."

The Taylor-CIA connection has re-inscribed for Liberians an age-old dilemma, what to do with our so-called historical relationship with the United States, which has been fraught with betrayal after betrayal. Liberians who have been commenting on various notice boards are justifiably angry, upset and disappointed, but not surprised. This is the validation we've been wanting for years, and it comes on the heels of the inauguration for a second term of our head of state, who was ironically pictured dedicating the new U.S. Embassy in Liberia this week, with a smiling Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in the foreground.

Some Liberians, under anonymity, are arguing that U.S. authorities who courted Taylor for intelligence be brought to justice for crimes against humanity in the Liberian civil war, that the International Criminal Court - now headed by a female Gambian national - should exhibit blind justice, that instead of hauling African and non-Western leaders to the international body for prosecution, they too should face the full weight of the law. I tend to agree with these arguments, however radical and farfetched they may seem.

Inquiring Liberian Minds Deserve to Know

The Globe article recounts that the CIA has said releasing further information could be a national security threat. A threat to whom, might I ask? Liberians deserve to know the nature, duration, scale, and scope of the CIA-Taylor relationship, it is a part of our national history, and must be recounted in the history books for our children, and our children's children to remember that a relationship with the U.S. must be monitored at all times.

Liberians are not gullible, nor are we unsophisticated in realizing that one plus one equals two. We've always known that the dubiousness surrounding Taylor's escape from the Massachusetts maximum-security prison was the beginning of the end for us. And if the implications of the Globe article are true, then the CIA could provide more answers.

It's no wonder that the U.S. didn't intervene in the Liberian civil war, though Liberians begged and pleaded for its "father/mother" to stop us from killing each other. One U.S. diplomat at the time even said that "Liberia is of no strategic interest to the United States." It begs the question, if Liberia was of "no strategic interest" during the war, when we were killing ourselves and each other in the name of liberation, what is Liberia's strategic interest to the U.S. now, when U.S. NGOs and development workers abound, and the Peace Corps has reinserted itself?

This should send a strong signal to Liberians and Liberia once and for all that America cannot be trusted. From Noriega, to Osama, to Saddam, to Samuel Doe, authoritarian leaders who end up in the U.S.'s good graces are never there for long.

Limits of Reciprocity

What Liberians and the Liberian government should be doing is strategizing, devising our own "Liberia Policy for the U.S." which factors in seriously our checkered history with unsentimental bias.

We should also rely on a corpus of intellectual and creative work that has already investigated our 'limits of reciprocity' with the United States. Liberian filmmaker Nancee Oku Bright's film, Liberia: America's Stepchild, explores the torturous relationship between Liberia and the United States, with her thesis being that the U.S. sees Liberia as an 'outside' child, one who is illegitimate upon conception and can be used and abused at will without consequence. And Liberian academic Dr. D. Elwood Dunn also interrogates this relationship in his book, Liberia and the United States During the Cold War: Limits of Reciprocity, showing that the Cold War placed Liberia in a very strategic position to exploit its relationship with the United States, yet with unintended consequences.

In this new political dispensation, it should be clear that Liberia should hold the U.S. at arm's length, that hosting AFRICOM or any U.S. satellite post is out of the question, that we have to use them just as strategically as they have used us. With the geopolitics of China and other emerging nations, Liberia needs to develop a "Look South Policy," not because we have become alienated, as in the case of Zimbabwe, but because we have made a conscious decision to explore other options, remembering that the U.S. will act only in its interest and leave those caught in the crossfire to fend for themselves.

We deserve to know the details of Taylor's relationship with the CIA. It is crucial to our development planning, historical remembrance, healing and nation-building.

Born in Monrovia, Liberia, Robtel Neajai Pailey is currently pursuing a doctorate in Development Studies at the University of London's School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS), as a Mo Ibrahim Foundation Ph.D. Scholar.

Liberia: Taylor's CIA Link - Boston Globe retracts story

By Othello B. Garblah,
26 January 2012

The New Dawn (Liberia)

The Boston Globe, a New York Times Company newspaper, has admitted that its report quoting US Defense officials as confirming that ex-President Charles Taylor worked as a hired US spy agent lacks evidence.

"The article was not based on adequate reporting and drew unsupported conclusion...the agency offered no such confirmation," Mr. David McCraw, Vice President and Assistant General Counsel of the New York Times Company said in a letter to Mr. Taylor's lawyer Wednesday.

"The Globe had no adequate basis for asserting otherwise and the story should not have run in this form," an editor's note published Wednesday along with the letter addressed to Courtenay Griffiths said.

When this paper contacted The Globe's Editor Martin Baron via email Wednesday to confirmed whether his paper had retracted the story, directed this writer to the link where the said editor's note was published, saying "It was published here..."

The Globe in its Tuesday January 17, 2012 edition under the caption ("Former Liberian Dictator Charles Taylor Had US Spy Agency Ties") reported that US Defense Department officials had confirmed "what has long been rumored" that Taylor worked with US spy agencies during his rise as one of the world's most notorious dictators.
Relevant Links

In his letter to Courtenay Griffiths QC, on Wednesday January 25, McCraw said the paper arrived at this conclusion after a careful review of the article by its editors and concluded that the said article was not based on adequate reporting.

In an editor's note published on its website with the letter addressed to Mr. Taylor's lawyer, The Globe admitted that the said article on the Taylor's CIA link drew unsupported conclusions and significantly overstepped available evidence when it described Mr. Taylor as having worked with US spy agencies as a "sought-after source."

"The story, based on a response by the US Defense Intelligence Agency to a long-pending records request from the Globe, described the agency's response as having "confirmed its agents and CIA agents worked with Taylor beginning in the early 1980s."

But the agency offered no such confirmation; rather, it said only that it possessed 48 documents running to 153 pages that fall in the category of what the Globe asked for - records relating to Taylor and to his relationship, if any, with American intelligence going back to 1982. The agency, however, refused to release the documents and gave no indication of what was in them," paper said in its retraction published Wednesday.

The paper adds that "one of the grounds for that refusal was suggestive, citing the need to protect "intelligence sources and methods," but that, by itself, fell well short of a sufficient basis for the published account.

There has long been speculation that Taylor had such a role, speculation fueled in part by Taylor's own suggestion in trial testimony that his 1985 escape from prison in Plymouth, Mass., may have been facilitated by CIA operatives. But Taylor, now standing trial before a UN special court on charges of rape, murder, and other offenses, denies he was ever a source for, or worked for, US intelligence."

The Full Text of the Editor's note below:

For the record: Story overreached in calling Taylor intelligence source
Editor's note: A front-page story on Jan. 17 drew unsupported conclusions and significantly overstepped available evidence when it described former Liberia president Charles Taylor as having worked with US spy agencies as a "sought-after source." The story, based on a response by the US Defense Intelligence Agency to a long-pending records request from the Globe, described the agency's response as having "confirmed its agents and CIA agents worked with Taylor beginning in the early 1980s."

But the agency offered no such confirmation; rather, it said only that it possessed 48 documents running to 153 pages that fall in the category of what the Globe asked for - records relating to Taylor and to his relationship, if any, with American intelligence going back to 1982. The agency, however, refused to release the documents and gave no indication of what was in them.

One of the grounds for that refusal was suggestive, citing the need to protect "intelligence sources and methods," but that, by itself, fell well short of a sufficient basis for the published account. There has long been speculation that Taylor had such a role, speculation fueled in part by Taylor's own suggestion in trial testimony that his 1985 escape from prison in Plymouth, Mass., may have been facilitated by CIA operatives. But Taylor, now standing trial before a UN special court on charges of rape, murder, and other offenses, denies he was ever a source for, or worked for, US intelligence.

The Globe had no adequate basis for asserting otherwise and the story should not have run in this form.

Original Story

Former Liberian dictator Charles Taylor had US spy agency ties

Boston Globe
January 17, 2012
By Bryan Bender

WASHINGTON - When Charles G. Taylor tied bed sheets together to escape from a second-floor window at the Plymouth House of Correction on Sept. 15, 1985, he was more than a fugitive trying to avoid extradition. He was a sought-after source for American intelligence.

After a quarter-century of silence, the US government has confirmed what has long been rumored: Taylor, who would become president of Liberia and the first African leader tried for war crimes, worked with US spy agencies during his rise as one of the world’s most notorious dictators.

The disclosure on the former president comes in response to a request filed by the Globe six years ago under the Freedom of Information Act. The Defense Intelligence Agency, the Pentagon’s spy arm, confirmed its agents and CIA agents worked with Taylor beginning in the early 1980s.

“They may have stuck with him longer than they should have but maybe he was providing something useful,’’ said Douglas Farah, a senior fellow at the International Assessment and Strategy Center in Washington and an authority on Taylor’s reign and the guns-for-diamonds trade that was a base of his power.The Defense Intelligence Agency refused to reveal any details about the relationship, saying doing so would harm national security.

Taylor, 63, pleaded innocent in 2009 to multiple counts of murder, rape, attacking civilians, and deploying child soldiers during a civil war in neighboring Sierra Leone while he was president of Liberia from 1997 to 2003. After a proceeding that lasted several years, the three-judge panel of the UN Special Court for Sierra Leone is now reviewing tens of thousands of pages of evidence, including the testimony of about 100 victims, former rebels, and Taylor himself, whose testimony lasted seven months.

“We hope the verdict will come in the first quarter of this year,’’ said Solomon Moriba, a spokesman for the court in The Hague.

Moriba said any relationship Taylor had with American intelligence was not related to his case before the court, but those who investigated the atrocities said it might explain why some US officials seemed reluctant to use their influence to bring Taylor to justice sooner.

After Taylor stepped down as Liberian president in 2003 following his indictment, he lived virtually in the open for three years in exile in Nigeria, a US ally. The Bush administration came under intense criticism from members of Congress for not intervening with the Nigerian government until Taylor was finally handed over to the court in 2006.

Allan White, a former Defense Department investigator who helped build the case against Taylor on behalf of the United Nations, said the news reinforced suspicions he had for years.

“I think the intelligence community’s past relationship with Taylor made some in the US government squeamish about a trial, despite knowing what a bad actor he was,’’ White said in an interview.

Taylor’s lawyer in the war crimes trial, Courtenay Griffiths, did not respond to several calls or e-mails seeking comment.

The Pentagon’s response to the Globe states that the details of Taylor’s role on behalf of the spy agencies are contained in dozens of secret reports - at least 48 separate documents - covering several decades. However, the exact duration and scope of the relationship remains hidden. The Defense Intelligence Agency said the details are exempt from public disclosure because of the need to protect “sources and methods,’’ safeguard the inner workings of American spycraft, and shield the identities of government personnel.

Former intelligence officials, who agreed to discuss the covert ties only on the condition of anonymity, and specialists including Farah believe Taylor probably was considered useful for gathering intelligence about the activities of Moammar Khadafy. During the 1980s, the ruler of Libya was blamed for sponsoring such terrorist acts as the Pan Am Flight 103 bombing over Lockerbie, Scotland and for fomenting guerrilla wars across Africa.

Taylor testified that after fleeing Boston he recruited 168 men and women for the National Patriotic Front for Liberia and trained them in Libya.

Over time, the former officials said, Taylor may have also been seen as a source for information on broader issues in Africa, from the illegal arms trade to the activities of the Soviet Union, which, like the United States, was seeking allies on the continent as part of the broader struggle of the Cold War.

Liberia, too, was of special interest to Washington. The country was founded in 1847 by freed American slaves who named its capital, Monrovia, after President James Monroe. The American embassy was among the largest in the world, covering two full city blocks, and US companies had significant investments in the country, including a Firestone tire factory and a Coca-Cola bottling plant.

A former ally of Taylor’s, Prince Johnson, told a government commission in Liberia in 2008 that he believed US intelligence had encouraged Taylor to overthrow the government in Liberia, which had fallen out of favor with Washington for banning all political opposition.

Taylor’s ties to Boston reach back four decades.

He arrived in 1972 and attended Chamberlayne Junior College in Newton and studied economics at Bentley College in Waltham. While in Boston, he emerged as a political force as national chairman of the Union of Liberian Associations. In 1977 he returned to Liberia and joined Samuel Doe’s government after a coup in 1980.

Taylor served as chief of government procurement in the Doe regime but fled Liberia for Boston in 1983 after being accused of embezzling $1 million from the government. He was arrested in Somerville in 1984 and jailed in Plymouth pending extradition.

The acknowledgment now that Taylor worked with US intelligence agencies at the time raises new questions about whether elements within the government orchestrated the Plymouth prison break in 1985 - as Taylor claimed during his trial - or at least helped him flee the United States.

Four other inmates who also escaped that night were soon recaptured.

“Why would someone walk out of a prison that’s never been breached in a 100 years?’’ said David M. Crane, who was the chief prosecutor for the Sierra Leone war crimes court from 2002 to 2005 and now teaches at Syracuse University College of Law. “It begs the question: How do you walk out of a prison? It seems someone looked the other way.’’

Taylor recounted the episode during his trial testimony, insisting that a guard opened his cell for him.

“I am calling it my release because I didn’t break out,’’ Taylor testified. “I did not pay any money. I did not know the guys who picked me up. I was not hiding [afterwards].’’

He said two men - he assumed they were American agents - were waiting for him outside the prison and drove him to New York to meet his wife. Using his own passport, he said, he traveled to Mexico before returning to Africa.

Brian Gillen, the superintendent of the maximum security jail in Plymouth who was director of security at the time of Taylor’s escape, declined to comment when reached last week by the Globe.

Taylor reemerged in Liberia in 1989 as head of a rebel army.

“I assigned an officer to maintain a watch on the Taylor people,’’ recalled James Keough Bishop, US ambassador in Liberia from 1981 to 1989.

Bishop said he was not aware of ties between American intelligence and Taylor.

After a series of bloody civil wars that lasted much of the 1990s, Taylor eventually assumed power. He was elected president in 1997.

Several former officials and specialists believe US intelligence had probably cut ties with Taylor by the time he became president, but Farah said he believes that even in the early years of their associations with Taylor, US intelligence agencies knew what kind of character he was.

“Even at the time, there were atrocities going on,’’ he said. “He wasn’t clean when they hooked up with him. We had a high tolerance for people who were willing to inform on Khadafy. The question is whether he actually provided anything useful.’’

 See also:

Charles Taylor 'worked' for CIA in Liberia

US authorities say former Liberian leader Charles Taylor worked for its intelligence agencies, including the CIA, the Boston Globe reports.

The revelation comes in response to a Freedom of Information request by the newspaper.

A Globe reporter told the BBC this is the first official confirmation of long-held reports of a relationship between US intelligence and Mr Taylor.

Mr Taylor is awaiting a verdict on his trial for alleged war crimes.

Rumours of CIA ties were fuelled in July 2009 when Mr Taylor himself told his trial, at the UN-backed Special Court for Sierra Leone in the Hague, that US agents had helped him escape from a maximum security prison in Boston in 1985.

The CIA at the time denied such claims as "completely absurd".

But now the Defence Intelligence Agency, the Pentagon's spy arm, has disclosed that its agents - and those of the CIA - did later use Mr Taylor as an informant, the Globe reports.

Globe reporter Bryan Bender told the BBC's Network Africa programme that Pentagon officials refused to give details on exactly what role Mr Taylor played, citing national security.

But they did confirm that Mr Taylor first started working with US intelligence in the 1980s, the period when he rose to become one of the world's most notorious warlords, Mr Bender says.
Mr Taylor was later elected Liberia's president.

He has been accused of arming and controlling the RUF rebels in neighbouring Sierra Leone during a 10-year campaign of terror conducted largely against civilians.

If convicted, Mr Taylor would serve a prison sentence in the UK.

He denies charges of murder, rape and using child soldiers.


Boston Globe: We 'overreached' on Charles Taylor-CIA story

Posted By Joshua Keating 
Foreign Policy
January 25, 2012 - 3:17 PM

Last week, I wrote a post linking to a front-page story from the Boston Globe on links between former Liberian President, now-war crimes defendant Charles Taylor and the CIA. The piece reported that, in response to a Freedom of Information Act request by the Globe, the U.S. government had confirmed that Taylor had worked with U.S. spy agencies while he was a rebel leader fighting to overthrow the Liberian government.

Today, the Globe has issued a near-retraction of the story:

A front-page story on Jan. 17 drew unsupported conclusions and significantly overstepped available evidence when it described former Liberia president Charles Taylor as having worked with US spy agencies as a “sought-after source.’’ The story, based on a response by the US Defense Intelligence Agency to a long-pending records request from the Globe, described the agency’s response as having “confirmed its agents and CIA agents worked with Taylor beginning in the early 1980s.’’

But the agency offered no such confirmation; rather, it said only that it possessed 48 documents running to 153 pages that fall in the category of what the Globe asked for - records relating to Taylor and to his relationship, if any, with American intelligence going back to 1982. The agency, however, refused to release the documents and gave no indication of what was in them.

One of the grounds for that refusal was suggestive, citing the need to protect “intelligence sources and methods,’’ but that, by itself, fell well short of a sufficient basis for the published account. There has long been speculation that Taylor had such a role, speculation fueled in part by Taylor’s own suggestion in trial testimony that his 1985 escape from prison in Plymouth, Mass., may have been facilitated by CIA operatives. But Taylor, now standing trial before a UN special court on charges of rape, murder, and other offenses, denies he was ever a source for, or worked for, US intelligence.

The Globe had no adequate basis for asserting otherwise and the story should not have run in this form.

The fact that these "records relating to Taylor and to his relationship, if any, with American intelligence" exist but the CIA won't release them is only going to increase the curiosity about what they contain. The correction is unlikely to stop the rumor mills in Monrovia, Washington, or The Hague.

Welcoming the Liberia-Is-a-Christian-Nation Campaign

Because of the Kind of Liberia We Will Have – Part I
The New Dawn (Liberia)
Monday, 27 February 2012
By Paul Y. Harry

It has been reported that a group of very faithful and we-will-do-anything-for-Jesus Christians, Christians who believe both in the Christian principles and faithfully and sincerely applying those principles in their words and deeds – that is, in the entire lives – have begun a campaign aimed at changing Article 14 of the current Liberian Constitution, which states that “no religious denomination or sect shall have any exclusive privilege or preference over any other, but all shall be treated alike … Consistent with the principle of separation of religion and state, the state shall establish no state religion,” to something like “Liberia is a Christian nation, although other religions will be accommodated and tolerated,” because, according to them, Liberia was founded on Christian principles, interpreted to mean that Liberia is a Christian nation.

Welcoming the Liberia-Is-a-Christian-Nation Campaign - Because of the Kind of Liberia We Will Have – Part I

As indicated earlier, a campaign to arrive at this state has already begun and, to make their drive gain traction or be weightier, those true-Christian-principles believers are seeking at least one million signatures from like-minded Christians.

Like ex-President Charles Taylor and his “Liberia for Jesus” crusade in 2002, when he prostrated at the SKD Sports Complex, saying, “Jesus, you are the President of Liberia; I am not,” these true Bible and we-really-believe-in-and-live-the-Christian-principles believers say they want to return Liberia back to the Christian principles upon which it was built.

Seriously, this is welcome news and development for our country and its people. But who would oppose the idea of making Liberia and its citizens speak and live the Christian principles set out in the Bible? We welcome it, for we know the kind of Liberia we will have.

We await the day on which that declaration will be made. Oh, God, let Liberia be declared a Christian nation sooner than later. We have longed for such a Liberia for years. Let the one million signatures be obtained in the twinkling of an eye.

But who would kick against declaring Liberia a Christian nation, when Liberia and Liberians would no longer be the same, when a complete transformation would take place?

But isn’t declaring Liberia a Christian nation about making the nation and its people practice in their national and individual lives, their public and private lives, the Christian principles set out and promulgated by Jesus and His apostles?

Who would kick against it, when declaring Liberia a Christian nation would make Liberia different from what it is now, in terms of its citizens’ desire to shun evil and live a godly life?

But who would reject it, when declaring Liberia a Christian nation would cause all politicians and government officials, including the President, to no longer mention the word “zoes” in the expression: “Our chiefs, elders and zoes”? In other words, who would kick against it, when “zoes” would be no more?

Who would oppose it, fellow Liberians, when declaring Liberia a Christian nation would make a top female government official who was recently honored by the chiefs, elders and zoes of Bong County, giving her a zoe-related traditional title, would return to the zoes and elders and say, “Liberia is now a Christian nation. Take back the title you gave me; I don’t want it”?

Who would kick against it, when declaring Liberia a Christian nation would cause prostitution and prostitutes to disappear from our Christian nation? Isn’t it good news?

Frankly, this is not an idea to oppose, because when Liberia is declared a Christian nation, men and women, boys and girls, will no longer go to motels, hotels or places of that nature for the purpose of having sex secretly, for it would be a new Liberia.

Who would oppose it, when declaring Liberia a Christian nation would cause all pieces of worldly music to disappear from the Christian nation that we would have? Let it be declared today, not tomorrow.

But who would frown on such a development, when declaring Liberia a Christian state would stop the operation of night clubs in our new Christian nation?

Would anyone really go against it, when declaring the country a Christian state would cause all men and women, boys and girls, to stop engaging in oral sex, when everyone would realize that no woman is to suck a man and no man is to suck a woman, as the declaration would force them to know instantly that God never made their mouths for their private sex organs? Let Liberia be declared a Christian nation now, not later.

But who would be irritated by it, when the declaration would stop the commission of fornication and adultery in our society, the Christian nation of our day?

Would anybody step on the idea? We don’t think so, as declaring Liberia a Christian country would cause pastors, deacons, bishops and other church leaders to refrain from eating church money or secretly having sex with the members of their church.

But why kick against the idea, when declaring Liberia a Christian state would cause women not to think about or have abortion, a practice that has caused the deaths of thousands of innocent, unborn kids? And why reject the declaration, when it will cause doctors, physician assistants and nurses to stop performing abortion?

But who would want to reject such a campaign, when declaring Liberia a Christian nation would cause all politicians and public officers to stop practicing corruption and anything resembling it in our new Christian nation? Who would reject the idea, when in the new Christian Liberia all business deals, including concessions agreements, would be transparently done? Wouldn’t this the kind of Liberia that any citizen would like to have?

Would anyone be that audacious to reject the new Liberia, when the declaration would cause criminal activities to cease, for a Christian Liberia would be a completely different Liberia?

But who would really oppose the declaration, when Liberia would now be a country where no one would sue another person, since the Christian principles talked about also involve loving your enemy, praying for those who hate and ill-treat you and forgiving seventy times seven those who wrong you?

Seriously, my people, it is in the interest of the country and its people for Liberia to be declared a Christian nation, and we pray that the God-fearing Christians, the we-live-only-for-Christ believers that are behind this campaign should not rest their case until they achieve their dream, for we know that they and those affixing their signatures to the one-million-signature petition are sure that the declaration will spiritually transform Liberia and its people.

But, seriously, folks, if declaring Liberia a Christian nation would have no impact on the spiritual lives and attitudes and behavior of the people of this land, especially those calling themselves Christians and supporting this Liberia-should-be-declared-a-Christian nation campaign, then why waste resources on the campaign, and why start such a campaign, in the first place? Is it because some pastors want to sit in studio at a radio station for callers to say to them, “Men of God, we support you for what you are doing; may God bless you and your families for standing up for Jesus”?

Because of the Kind of Liberia We Will Have – Part 2
The New Dawn
Tuesday, 06 March 2012
By Paul Y. Harry

It is now well-known that a group of very faithful and we-will-do-anything-for-Jesus Christians, Christian who are faithfully and sincerely applying in their words and deeds the Christian principles set out in the Bible, has begun a campaign aimed at changing Article 14 of the current Liberian Constitution, which states that “no religious denomination or sect shall have any exclusive privilege or preference over any other, but all shall be treated alike … Consistent with the principle of separation of religion and state, the state shall establish no state religion,” to something like “Liberia is a Christian nation, although other religions will be accommodated and tolerated,” because, according to them, Liberia was founded on Christian principles, interpreted to mean that Liberia is a Christian nation.

Like ex-President Charles Taylor and his “Liberia for Jesus” crusade in 2002, when he prostrated at the SKD Sports Complex, saying, “Jesus, you are the President of Liberia; I am not,” these we-really-believe-in-and-live-the-Christian-principles believers say they want to return Liberia back to the Christian principles upon which it was built.

Let it be borne in mind that whether Liberia was founded on Christian principles or not, we all, I suppose, welcome the idea of making the people of Liberia live their lives based on the Christian principles as we know it to be recorded in the Bible. We all welcome the idea and the campaign.

Seriously, fellow Liberians, who would oppose this we-want-Liberians-to-live-according-to-Christian-principles campaign, when declaring Liberia a Christian nation would cause our government officials to stop misusing gas slips?

We welcome the idea because declaring Liberia a Christ-like nation means that people will stop committing sins and the land will be a God-fearing place. The declaration is welcome because it will cause our government to stop dealing in secrecy and operating diabolically.

But who would oppose it, when declaring Liberia a Christian state would make the revenue to be generated from the oil that has been discovered not to be marred in corruption? We will now have a new nation – a Christian nation.

Could the declaration be made today? We want for Liberians to live their lives based on the Christian principles. For instance, if Liberia is declared a Christian nation, it will be hard, if not impossible, for anyone to use profane language, as the Bible says that our words should be seasoned with salt. The declaration will cause all to refrain from using bad language. Isn’t this good news?

But who would be brave to kick against a campaign aimed at making Liberians love their neighbors as they love themselves? Declaring Liberia a Christ-like nation will ensure this, as those behind the campaign are sure that the “Liberia is a Christian nation” declaration will not only be on paper, but will be manifested in the lives of the people? Who wouldn’t be happy about this?

Who would really kick against it, when declaring Liberia a Christian nation would not only cause all to believe in Jesus Christ, but to also go to church every Sunday?

There is no way that anyone would be brave to oppose making Liberia and its people operate on Christian principles because when Liberia is declared a Christian state, all Christians will instantly follow I Corinthians 1:10, which tells Christians: “Now, I beg you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you all speak the same thing, and that there be no divisions among you: but that you be perfectly joined together in the same mind and in the same judgment.” There will no longer be Catholics, Lutherans, Baptists, Independent Baptists, Presbyterians, Methodists, Jehovah’s Witnesses, Later Day’s Saints, Pentecostals, and so forth, for the desire to follow he Christian principles will cause all to shun division and be of the same mind and of the same judgment. Isn’t this great news for the land and its people? Let Liberia be declared a Christian nation today!

But who would oppose the campaign, when living by the Christian principles would cause unfaithfulness or cheating in relationships or marriages to stop completely?

But who would refuse to let Liberia become a Christian nation, when declaring it a Christian state would cause all of our politicians and political leaders to be honest people, when politicians will no longer make empty and vague promises during any political season?

Look! Let Liberia follow the Christian principles that those behind the we-want-Liberia-to-be-declared-a-Christian-nation campaign want Liberians to live by. It is a great endeavor because declaring Liberia a Christian state will cause all the chiefs, elders, zoes and others practicing polygamy in the interior and other places in our land to stop immediately. The practice of polygamy is not part of the Christian principles we’re talking about, so there will no longer be polygamy in the new Liberia.

Making Liberians live by Christian principles is a good thing, as it will make our country the talk of the world in terms of moral uprightness, as we will be completely different from all other nations with declared state religions because unlike theirs, which is only paper-oriented, Liberians, especially the Christians that are behind the campaign, will show it in their daily lives.

We can only welcome the campaign to declare Liberia a Christian state with open arms because the declaration will cause teachers to stop accepting bribes and for students to stop offering bribes for grades. It will also cause teachers to stop having sex with students for grades. We are talking about the new Liberia, which will be based on Christian principles. We can’t wait to have that new Liberia.

We don’t see why anybody would oppose the campaign, when it is clear that returning Liberia to the Christian principles upon which it was built would cause us to live like the people who established Liberia on the principles talked about? For example, part of the Christian principles introduced by those who established the country on Christian principles was to exclude the natives they met here from the citizenry. Indeed, there is a need for us to return to such a Christian principle. Es, Liberia was built on Christian principles.

Let Liberia be declared a Christina nation. Let the one-million signatures make us return to those Christian principles upon which the country was founded. We need that because we, especially those behind this campaign, are convinced that Liberia will be spiritually and morally resuscitated, and Liberia and its citizens will experience a new era of moral uprightness. We can’t wait to see the arrival of that new Liberia, a Liberia whose people will speak and act based on the Christian principles set out in the Bible.

Christian principles-based Liberia, we await you!

Liberia: A Country Founded on Imperialist Principles

The New Dawn (Liberia)
Thursday, 08 March 2012
By Mohamed Dukuly (Sydney)

The present debate about returning Liberia to a Christian state is not only a malicious effort for destabilization but also a sign of how the colonial churches succeeded in their role as facilitators of Americo-black imperialism in the place now called Liberia.

The quest for Christian statehood is based on the misconception that Liberia was founded on Christian principles. This idea has been around for a while and mainly shared and promoted by some uncritical Liberian Christians who are seeking to continue the ideological imperialism in Liberia. The fact is, Liberia was NOT founded on Christian principles. Especially if Christian principles mean the “principles of living that Jesus Christ taught about our general behaviour and relationship with one another as human beings and creations of God”.

This paper is aimed to shed light on the idea that Liberia was founded on colonial imperialist principles to serve as dumping place for former American black slaves, primarily for the interest of those who once enslaved them. It was a situation whereby the imperialists American Government, through the American Colonization Society (ACS) imposed themselves on a foreign land and people for the purpose of enhancing their economy, political and social interest, as well as enforcing their imperialist culture and religion on the native population.

We are all aware that prior to the formation of the private organization that led the colonization of Liberia, the question of what to do with the black population in America was always alive in the minds of the American people. Amongst the various debates and discussions going on then, the popular solution most people leaned towards was the idea to remove free black slaves to some sort of territory beyond the border of the United States of America (see Sherwood, 1916).

Some of the well-known arguments advanced then were that: Politically, the two races could not live in harmony with equal political power because there will be prejudices and recollection of injuries between them. Physically, one race could oppose to the other on the bases of “color, form and beauty”. Morally, it was argued that blacks were inferior to whites in intelligence and moral ideals. The only solution therefore was “to transfer the blacks to another country” (ibid, p.493).

By the late end of the 18th Century, advocates for the deportation of blacks to Africa project had gained higher momentum and well known individuals like Thornton who was ready to sacrifice his entire fortune for the project and Hopkins who introduced the idea of the need to salvage Africa. However, Efforts made then were mainly through individuals but paved the way for the formation of the American Colonization Society (ACS) (ibid, p. 507)

The American Colonization Society (ACS) was formed in1816 as collective effort aimed to facilitate the colonization of free blacks of the United States (Poe, 1970).Key people behind the ACS were both “religious” and secular. There were individuals like Reverend Finley who believed in the idea of divine mission to colonize free blacks into Africa and slave holders from the South who supported the ACS because it meant to remove dangerous elements from their society. There was Paul Cuffe a philanthropist and rich businessman of the Quakers community whose interest was to just do something about the plight of black slaves. The interesting thing was that both religious and socio-political arguments were constantly used for different audience just to gain support for the ACS at all cost (see Sherwood 1970). The ACS later won the support of the American government under the leadership of James Monroe and no need to mention here that this was done purely for the interest of America.

Colonizing Africa was not an idea supported at all quarters of the black leadership. Some blacks truly argued that “colonization was an attempt to mask the ongoing problem of slavery, and in the process provided white colonizationists an opportunity to mollify their consciences without genuinely addressing the larger issues”. On the other hand, others saw it as once in a life time opportunity to obtain a full flesh freedom and sense of dignity in a land they can call theirs. While the religious patrons saw it as a God given opportunity to plan their form of Christianity in Africa in disguise of something else (see Stepp, 2007).

One year after what some called “dodgy procurement of land” by the ACS in Cape Mesurado of present Liberia; the first colonist ship arrived in March 1822. Despite intense resistance from the indigenous people the colonists occupied the Island, named it as Christopolis and began building dwellings (Holsoe 1971). Historians recorded that from March up till December that year (1822) indigenous people put up series of resistance against the colonists but failed in their efforts to prevent them from settling.

Even the questionable account of King Kamara’s (Sao Boso) intervention at the time did not help to prevent attacks against the colonist. As the indigenous leaders around the coastal areas of the Island who are mostly known by their imperialists imposed names including “Kings Bromley, Todo, Governor, Konko, Jimmy, Gray, Long Peter, George, Willey, and Ben, as well as all of King Peter's and King Bristol's…” (ibid, p .338); put their warriors together and executed a massive attack on the colonist in November of 1822 but failed to get them out.

Few months after the arrival of the first ship, ACS brought in Reverend Jehudi Ashmun, to administer the colony on their behalf. A Reverend that the black colonist led by Reverend Lott Carey revolted against due to what they called “Ashmum’s unfair attitude” towards them. Internal revolts plus perceived threat of encroachment from imperialist Britain and France were too real to be taken for granted. By 1847, the colony was declared Independent from ACS (White control) and named Liberia with its capital as Monrovia.

The story of Christianity on pre-Liberian soil can not be told without mention of Reverend Lott Cary. He and Teague led the first Baptist Mission into West Africa. The key source of the claim that Liberia was founded on Christian principles is principally premised on the works of those two men and later by activity of Reverend Day of the Southern Baptist Mission. Lott Cary established the first church in Liberia and became vice governor of the colony; while Teague became part of the team that drafted the 1847 Liberian Constitution. However, it is important to be aware of the following salient points about early Christianity in pre-Liberia.

Firstly, Lott Carey and Teague were never official delegates of the American Colonization Society (ACS) to Africa. They were sent by the Triennial Convention upon the recommendation of William Crane to spread Christianity in Africa. The two Christian missionaries plus their families first settled in Sierra Leone and later joined the colonist in 1822 for Liberia. In fact it was recorded that Lott Carey had Sierra Leone in mind as destination while his contract was being arranged by the Church group (see Poe 197 p. 51).

Secondly, prior to setting off for Africa, both Lott Carey and Teague were seriously urged to keep away from politics of the colony as much as they could and to “render unto Caesar the things which are Caesar’s...” (See Stoughton to Carey and Teague in Seventh Annual Report of Baptist Board for Foreign Missions, 1821,p. 397) as cited by (Poe19 p. 55).

Thirdly, Lott Carey involvement into politics was not favoured by everyone in the Triennial Convention. This is why the first report sent to the six Triennial General Missionary Convention one year after his death included the remark that “.... could he (Lott Carey) had devoted his whole time to (the work of the church) much good might have been expected to have resulted from his labours....” (See Fisher, 1922, p. 416). This is one of the reasons why some writers argue that Lott Carey and his Christian team had plans different than that of the American Colonization Society. Unfortunately, their Christian work was somehow an encoded imperialism.

In spite all of these; indigenous Liberians will always remember Reverend Lott Carey as the great colonial missionary who died from injury sustained while preparing ammunition to be used for killing our people (Stepp, 2007, p. 51).

It should therefore be noted that reference made to Christianity and God in the 1847 Constitution should not seen as a genuine attempt to seeking goodness for all (indigenous inclusive). The reality then proved that this was not the case. Ironically, every social injustice issues they experienced as mentioned in the preamble of the 1847 constitution were the exact issues native people were to later be faced with from the so-called “Christian country” (see Liberian 1847 constitution). This is why it is important to raise the question of which Christianity were they talking about? Was it a Christianity that suited their understanding of “freedom”- a concept they understood as the acquisition of property, Black control of churches and their own destiny with their own “distinctive political culture”(Denise 2011). Or was it Christianity without Jesus Christ (Burrowes, 2011) that was being used as cover for imperialism and subjugation of the natives?

What is clear among scholars and at least echoed by Dunn (1997, p.712) is that once established in the place now called Liberia, these former slaves, and their descendents proceeded to enslave the ethnicities among whom they settled in the I820S in an exactly similar fashion which characterised European colonial rule over Africans in other parts of Africa .

These black colonists or settlers were filled with combination of anger about their past experience, extreme desperation and desires to get out of the control of their former slave masters. Their sole focus was on themselves and their plight. So they could do anything to get what they wanted. An example of their mindset then is illustrated by Burrowes (2001), when he recorded that once in 1841 when the president of the American Colonization Society (ACS) wrote Teage to complain about an offensive article in the Liberian newspaper against the whites, Teage (one of the Christian leaders then) responded that as in common with all colored men, he had certain sentiment.... and it was his indefeasible rights to hold those opinions against their former slave masters. What sort of Christianity then that the country is said to be founded on when everything that transpired since their presence on our soil were based on injustice, exploitation and unfair sufferings of native people?

Truly, Christianity filled with unfairness and injustice should not be equated with the Christianity connected to Jesus Christ. The latter is true Christianity while the former is imperialism in disguise. Against this background, it can be said that the founding of Liberia is nothing other than an exercise of imperialism.

In the first place the land was taken by treachery and presented to us as normal transaction. Fisher (1922) listed gunpowder; rum tobacco iron pots, looking glasses and other items not more than $ 300 as the exchange articles for the “valuable track of land which was the nucleus of Liberia”. The claim about signing treaty with native chiefs is a bit of mockery. How could they possibly do a fair deal with chiefs that were not literate in English language and did not speak English? No wonder the natives refused to allow them settle and put up fight to the best of their abilities.

Native people who out-numbered the imperialist at almost 100 to one ratio were denied every form of political participation in the so called “Christian country”. The 1847 constitution that is said to have set the Christian principle basis of Liberia did not assign any citizenship to the native people yet still they later introduced and imposed compulsory hut-tax on them. Not only that land was forcefully taken but natives were more or less a defector subjects to those colonial imperialists. A good “imperialist Christianity” – I guess!

They also practiced a very harsh form of assimilation policy in Liberia whereby natives were forced to undergo a “brainwashed education” to become “Christians” for several reasons. One of those reasons was to make religion an antidote to critical consciousness towards any attempt to question their hegemony. Another was to make their form of Christianity as a deliberate attempt to disrupt the cultural and moral value system existed in pre- Liberia (see Akpan, 1973, pp. 226-227). Not surprising that even in this day and age, one still sess the impact of the decade long brainwashed education in Liberia.

When it was clear that the assimilation policy was not working due to resistance from the Poro and Sande societies on one hand and Islam on the other, the colonial imperialists instituted an indirect rule system that subjected the natives to some of the harshest forms of maltreatments and exploitations. Like other colonial imperial powers, Liberia colonial imperialists placed natives against each other. They formed the Liberian Frontier Force, an on record notorious force to implement the indirect rule policy. Through this Frontier force, the Liberian colonial imperialists created the right atmosphere that allowed them to do to the natives what they experienced from their slave masters (see ibid pp. 229-231)

In conclusion, it is save to state that any claim that links the founding of Liberia to “Imperialist Christian principle” is not only demeaning to real Christianity but also an expression of concocted fallacy based on “brainwashed education”. In view of the historical situation explained earlier plus the realities seen on the ground in present day Liberia, the most rational position on the matter is the view that Liberia was founded on imperialist principles- those that advance domination, exploitation, institutional discrimination and social inequality.


    Akpan, M. B. (1973). Black Imperialism: Americo-Liberian Rule over African Peoples of Liberia, 1841-1964. In Canadian Journal of African studies, Vol. 7, No. 2.
    Burrowes, C.P. (2001) Black Christian republicanism: a southern ideology in early Liberia, 1822 to 1847. In the Journal of Negro History. Vol. 86, No. 1.
    Dunn, D. E. (1987). Black Colonialism: The Americo-Liberian Scramble for the Hinterland by Yekutiel Gershoni; African and American Values: Liberia and West Africa by Katherine Harris; Big Powers and Small Nations: A Case Study of United States-Liberian Relations by Hassan B. Sisay. Review work in: The Journal of Modern African Studies, Vol. 25, No. 4. pp. 712-715
    Dennis, D. A. (2011) the Mississippi Colonial Experience in Liberia, 1829-1860 (Doctorate Desertation). Retrieved from ProQuest. UMI 3466928
    Fisher, M. M. (1922). Lott Carey. The Colonizing Missionary. In the Journal of Negro History, Vol.7, No.4
    Flowers, E. H. (2008). “A Man, a Christian... and Gentlemen?” John Day , Southern Baptists, and the Nineteenth Century Mission to Liberia. In Baptist History and Heritage, Vol.43, No.2
    Holsoe, S.V. (1971). A Study of Relation between Settlers and Indigenous People in Western Liberia, 1821-1847. In African Historical studies, Vol. 4, No. 2
    Poe, W. A. (1970). Lott Cary: Man of Purchases Freedom. In Church History: Studies in Christianity and Culture, Vol.39, No. 1 [Peer Reviewed Journal].
    Sherwood, H. N. (1916). Early Negro Deportation Projects .In The Mississippi Valley Historical Review, Vol.2, No. 4
    Sherwood, H. N. (1917). The Formation of American Colonization Society .In The Journal of Negro History, Vol. 2, No.3

About the Author
The Author is a trainer and facilitator with several years of group work experience with families and individuals from CALD background. He holds a BA (ED) History from Bayero University in Nigeria and postgraduate qualifications in Social Science and Family Mediation from Australia. He is presently pursuing his Master degree in Social Work at the Charles Sturt University in Australia.