No Negotiating With Terrorists

“No negotiating with terrorists!”

Now that’s something I can get behind.

A terrorist not only doesn’t share the same goals as you and I, they also don’t play by the same rules.  Terrorists are the ultimate bullies.  They will lie, cheat, steal, even murder, in order to get their way.  The ends justify the means.  They’re right, we’re wrong.  Terrorists can’t fathom compromise, so what is the point of negotiating?

We face terrorism on many fronts and at many levels because sociopathy and barbarism are not subtle or selective.  Perhaps they represent bad wiring in some small but wickedly destructive sub-class of humans, or maybe we all carry the defect, but it only rises up to preempt the better instincts among a minority of us.

In either case, if we don’t want to be “terrorized” into submission, we must decisively stand our ground and entertain no compromise.

“No negotiating with terrorists!”

The United States has become a terrorist nation.

Not you and I as such . . . because regular folks like us are generally peaceful and sane.

Unfortunately, we no longer have any say in the decisions and direction of the country.

But there is a national agenda, driven on many fronts at many different levels, promoted in our names as citizens of the country, which has transformed the U.S. into the greatest scourge in the history of the planet.  We have unbridled power coupled with no coherent political philosophy, fueled by unchecked imperial ambition and delusions of world rule, unimpeded by considerations of morality or sensitivity to the value of human life.

U.S. terrorism expresses itself internationally as wars, regime changes, special operations missions, economic manipulation and interference, cyber and propaganda warfare, and is implemented with the forward-basing of troops, NGOs, embedded intelligence agents, foreign mercenaries, and often outright military occupation of over 140 countries.

All of this is conceived, planned, and coordinated from within our own borders.  Often it reflects official, if not always publicly-known, foreign policy.  Sometimes it grows out of legacy policies and practices, the product of a group-think world view which has a life of its own established over decades, one which embraces the unquestioned, and until recently, unchallenged role of the U.S. as the world’s policeman and sole superpower.

While we can find fault in the workings of the loose collective of institutions which make up what is now called the Deep State, much direct blame for our terrorism can be assigned to the CIA.  This 70-year-old agency has become the main engine for projecting U.S power, providing the foot soldiers, technology and weaponry, for a vast majority of catastrophes we have precipitated over the past sixty years.  The list of sovereign nations the U.S. has illegally meddled and decisively interfered with — compiled by the brilliant and highly-acclaimed historian and geopolitical analyst William Blum — is as formidable as it is disgraceful (please note: *indicates the successful overthrow of a government):

  • China 1949 to early 1960s
  • Albania 1949-53
  • East Germany 1950s
  • Iran 1953 *
  • Guatemala 1954 *
  • Costa Rica mid-1950s
  • Syria 1956-7
  • Egypt 1957
  • Indonesia 1957-8
  • British Guiana 1953-64 *
  • Iraq 1963 *
  • North Vietnam 1945-73
  • Cambodia 1955-70 *
  • Laos 1958 *, 1959 *, 1960 *
  • Ecuador 1960-63 *
  • Congo 1960 *
  • France 1965
  • Brazil 1962-64 *
  • Dominican Republic 1963 *
  • Cuba 1959 to present
  • Bolivia 1964 *
  • Indonesia 1965 *
  • Ghana 1966 *
  • Chile 1964-73 *
  • Greece 1967 *
  • Costa Rica 1970-71
  • Bolivia 1971 *
  • Australia 1973-75 *
  • Angola 1975, 1980s
  • Zaire 1975
  • Portugal 1974-76 *
  • Jamaica 1976-80 *
  • Seychelles 1979-81
  • Chad 1981-82 *
  • Grenada 1983 *
  • South Yemen 1982-84
  • Suriname 1982-84
  • Fiji 1987 *
  • Libya 1980s
  • Nicaragua 1981-90 *
  • Panama 1989 *
  • Bulgaria 1990 *
  • Albania 1991 *
  • Iraq 1991
  • Afghanistan 1980s *
  • Somalia 1993
  • Yugoslavia 1999-2000 *
  • Ecuador 2000 *
  • Afghanistan 2001 *
  • Venezuela 2002 *
  • Iraq 2003 *
  • Haiti 2004 *
  • Somalia 2007 to present
  • Honduras 2009
  • Libya 2011 *
  • Syria 2012
  • Ukraine 2014 *

Among these, at the urging and with the active partnering of the CIA, are 35 countries ruled by horrifyingly oppressive dictators, fascist regimes, drug lords, and jihadists.

This has not just dramatically, malignantly, affected the international order.  It has also created enormous resentment, and generated enemies where there were none before.  In that sense, it is a self-perpetuating reign of mayhem and chaos, keeping the world in flux and disarray, constantly producing even more threats to our country which then, in the adversarial and combative mindset of the CIA, requires further meddling and mayhem.

We have to be honest with ourselves and judiciously apply the same standards across the board when judging such anti-democratic, autocratic abusers of power.  If we’ve been able thus far to rationalize distressing signs that the CIA was slowly becoming a rogue security agency — dismissing sordid leaks and disturbing discoveries as isolated rare instances of individual acts of overzealousness and insubordination — the recent revelations provided by Wikileaks with the publication of their Vault 7 documents provide concrete proof that the CIA has been completely out-of-control for a very long time, and what should truly disturb us is that such behavior is not the exception but the rule.

With terrorist organizations like the ISIS, al Nusra, al Qaeda, and now our own CIA, it is impossible to integrate them into more tempered and balanced institutions, especially in what is portrayed as the institutional framework of a democracy.  These elements violate national and international law and treaties, arrogantly scoff at diplomatic protocol, are adverse to power-sharing, spurn the time-honored boundaries of common sense and decency, and are ruthlessly callous and amoral.

It’s the way unchecked power evolves, how a parasite will ultimately kill its host.

We now have little choice.  The CIA and all traces of it must be eradicated, except for an archival installation in the Smithsonian Institute as a warning to future generations.

This is now a matter of survival for the U.S. and perhaps the human race.

We have inadvertently created a monster and lost control.  The CIA is incompatible with the survival of a free, open, just, democratic society.  It may prove incompatible with the survival of the human race if left unchecked.

Understandably, the CIA will plead the case for its own institutional survival.

But the case is closed.  There is nothing more to discuss.

“No negotiating with terrorists!”

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  • Roland Jesperson

    Excellent piece John, in both research and analysis. I’m wondering though, what does the likes of Ray McGovern think about this? I don’t question the power of what is loosely referred to as the “Deep State,” but I do wonder about exactly where such power is concentrated. Mostly in the CIA, at this time? What about other potential actors and parties in interest?

    • That’s a very interesting question. I would love to hear what Ray McGovern or any professional security agency person would have to say about my rather extreme condemnation. Of course, Ray worked in a different agency than what it has become. I’m sure there were more internal checks and less of a intra-departmental agenda. The CIA has, of course, always been the brutal cutting edge of U.S. foreign adventurism. And maybe I’m naive, but I’d like to think at one time it was subordinate to the line of command in the Executive Branch.

      • Roland Jesperson

        I doubt you’ve suggested anything with which Ray McGovern would disagree. I was just wondering about relative degrees of influence within and among the various “deep state” entities doing the dirty work of empire.

        Not that it matters. The problem is that these things are being done at all. The consequences for the world can be fatal, whether from nuclear war or from climate catastrophe. And internally, increasingly savage levels of repression become necessary. The whole, mad pursuit of power and dominance needs to stop, or we are all doomed. Unfortunately, I fear that will require far more than curtailing the actions of just the CIA.

        • Absolutely correct. Abolishing the CIA is one piece of the puzzle, and a daunting one at that. The framework allowing this sort of anti-democratic institutional abuse is far-reaching and robust. I have a proposal for taking the entire war machine apart, literally starving it via a bottoms-up soft coup, premised on creating a voter bloc which demands recompense for 24 years of military waste and fraud. It’s too much to explain here. I have written dozens of articles about it, e.g. If you are serious about getting into the thick of a truly outrageous, outside-the-box, highly controversial peace strategy, please look at my book “The Peace Dividend” ( As proof that this is not just a mercenary attempt to extract three bucks from your wallet, if you’re not enriched (not to say completely blown away) by the polemic and proposal itself, I’ll refund every last penny of your investment and throw in a genuine sumo wrestler nail clipper from right here in Japan.

  • George Polley

    We’re definitely a terrorist nation, justifying all our moves, and protecting our interest with military bases around the world, including a number of them in Japan.