23 June 2015 by Published in: Uncategorized 18 comments

Not much preamble is required to appreciate this list, especially given the official narrative about Russia having imperialist expansion plans that are only now unfolding in the Ukraine. 99% of all Americans that read this list will shrug, even though there are only 220 countries in the world – 55 of them which have been either overthrown by the U.S., or that the U.S. has attempted to overthrow, since WW2.

I’d suggest that anyone who thinks that the Ukraine is all about Russia trying to crush the free will of the people think long and hard about the excuses the U.S. has used to topple democratically elected governments all around the world, to install brutal dictatorships in many cases, or to leave in absolute misery and unending chaos.

Here’s the list:¬†http://williamblum.org/essays/read/overthrowing-other-peoples-governments-the-master-list

And here’s a clip of the Undersecretary of State speaking on a cell phone with the U.S. Ambassador to the Ukraine, conspiring to overthrow the democratically elected government of the Ukraine, which then happened. Also self-explanatory.

This is simple. Your government, and your media, are lying through their teeth to you, trying to restart the Cold War – a time during which I grew up, when everyone on the planet lived in constant fear of nuclear annihilation. This is not good. And it’s not right. It takes your active participation to continue. If everyone simply trumpeted these true facts/links via their blogs and emails, the public might wake up. Alternatively, you can do nothing, and your children can live in a world where nuclear annihilation is again a constant threat, and a rogue U.S. government abuses the people of the planet while assuring everyone it’s the good guys. I totally get that it’s way simpler to do nothing, or hope others do it for you. That’s by design – you’ve been inculcated with the belief that apathy is the only or the most intelligent response – because resistance is futile. Just as many in totalitarian regimes allowed their governments to perform atrocities in their name, figuring there was no point in resisting. Which isn’t true. Black people would still be riding on the back of the bus and women wouldn’t be voting if that were true. It’s another lie.

If you participate in that lie knowing these things about the Ukraine and unbridled¬†imperialism, you’re complicit in your government’s actions.

It’s not a partisan issue. It’s not the democrats or the republicans. Read the list, and consider that all of this happened regardless of which party was in office.

I’m now stepping off the soapbox. Your call what you do about it from here. I don’t live there, but I do live on Earth, and a return to the Cold War brought about by the U.S. deliberately trying to cause conflict on Russia’s border can’t be misconstrued.

For those who wonder why, there are several reasons. First, the military/security complex that sucks a trillion or so a year from the taxpayer, wants it, because only if there’s constant fear will you continue paying it whatever it likes. Second, Russia and China and twenty-something other countries have formed something called the BRICS nations, which don’t use the dollar to settle trades. That endangers the U.S.’ stranglehold on the global economy, which directly benefits a handful of elite bankers and corporations at the direct expense of everyone else, including you. So Russia must be dragged into financial ruin if U.S. corporate and banking interests are to continue making more money for doing nothing but manipulating the world.¬†Third, Russia blocked the U.S. from overthrowing Syria predicated on the falsehood that its government was using Sarin gas on its civilians. When that was exposed as a lie (remember the WMDs in Iraq? These people aren’t particularly inventive and stick with the tried and true), the U.S. got pissy, and decided to overthrow the democratically elected government of the Ukraine and start a civil war on Russia’s border.

Don’t believe me? The cell call above is the ranking U.S. officials in charge of the region discussing exactly how they’re going to do it.

Figure it out, and stop tolerating being lied to as though it was okay and reasonable. It’s not okay. You need to understand things if you’re going to live useful, enlightened lives.

This, and the Trans Pacific Partnership trade agreement, are two of the most important issues of our time. For why the TPP, which comes up for fast track vote again tomorrow after having been defeated a week or so ago, and is danger of passing this time, listen to this short interview with one of the most senior members of Congress. Anyone who thinks this isn’t criminally bad didn’t listen to it. Again, you won’t hear much about it, also by design.

I know these posts are unpopular because they’re incorrectly viewed as political (they’re actually apolitical, as I pointed out above in my observation that it didn’t matter who ran the country – the strategy remained the same), because most don’t want to hear about what’s actually happening, preferring their view of the world to the truth. But please, step out of that mind frame for just a few minutes, and consider what’s happening on your watch.

Sorry to be a big buzz kill.

Now back to writing diverting fictional accounts for my dinner.





  1. Wed 24th Jun 2015 at 8:15 am

    Don’t know if all of this is true, but I’ll bet the royalties on my next book (hey, so it won’t be King’s ransom) that a lot of it is. Putin is no angel, but I think our involvement in the region has been more than provocative and Putin feels genuinely threatened. As to our clandestine activities in the rest of the world, it’s amazing how few Americans are aware of our “secret history” of imperialism.

    • Russell Blake  –  Wed 24th Jun 2015 at 10:57 am

      Well, the call certainly is. And so is the list. I’m more than passingly familiar with the history of the U.S., and can’t find any that aren’t, let me put it that way. How anyone in their right mind can believe the official spin with that call on record is beyond me, but then again, Americans have this history of ignoring what’s in plain sight in favor of fanciful explanations that completely defy logic, not to mention physics and common sense. Shrug. Only reason I care about this is because I see where it’s heading, and a third world war isn’t in my best interests as a human.

      • Fitch  –  Fri 26th Jun 2015 at 7:23 am

        FWIW: This is a link to a transcript of the phone conversation: http://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-26079957


        • Russell Blake  –  Fri 26th Jun 2015 at 9:16 am

          I love the damage control spin from the BBC: “It’s not what it plainly is – the US discussing how their orchestration and support of a coup will topple the democratically elected government of a sovereign nation closely allied with Russia, in fact, on its border. Rather, it’s all very complicated and there are layers of nuance.” No, there aren’t. You have the U.S. pretending that this is a grass roots movement, when in fact it’s plain from the call that it’s carefully coordinated and well thought out chess, with the U.S. playing the dominant role in who becomes the new government.

          Just as in most other cases where the U.S. pretends it’s an observer when it’s actually driving regime change. The U.S. lies early and often about just about everything, and this is nothing different. It’s a passive-aggressive bully that’s trying to provoke Russia into escalating into another Cold War so the powerful special interests in the U.S. government can stave off a new global power (too late – BRICS is already here and China’s debating backing the Yuan with gold, which would effectively flush the U.S. dollar) while curtailing domestic freedom and robbing what’s left of the nation’s prosperity via endless “defense” spending. All about money and control, as always.

          • Fitch  –  Fri 26th Jun 2015 at 12:10 pm

            I wonder if it’s in China’s best interest to flush the US dollar? If I understand correctly, which is in doubt, they are holding a lot (a trillion or two, more?) of US paper that would become effectively worthless since it is unlikely to have an inflation clause. They might think of that as in investment, or sunk cost, but it’s a lot to write off.

          • Russell Blake  –  Fri 26th Jun 2015 at 3:48 pm

            Not if they’ve been steadily buying gold, which they have. Why? Because when the dollar tanks, their gold holdings will rise in value, so if they’ve hedged properly, it’s net neutral. The days of the dollar’s hegemony are rapidly drawing to a close.

  2. Wed 24th Jun 2015 at 12:05 pm

    Yes, that’s where I have the biggest problem. No matter if it’s Iran or Syria or the Ukraine, there are always lots of politicians and their followers ready to start a war. You’d think, after the last 15 years, we would have learned something.

  3. Fitch
    Wed 24th Jun 2015 at 3:20 pm

    I too lived through the cold war, and the bomb shelter craze. I never had a bomb shelter but I knew people that did. Also the aftermath of WW-II and Korea (I’m 73).

    A good friends son, a Marine who fought in Iraq, saw chemical weapon stashes there a number of years ago. He took pictures of them but when he was wounded and flown to Germany, his camera was lost with the pictures on it. At the time there was nothing in the news about them but I believed him. He was correct, as this article indicates: http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2014/10/14/world/middleeast/us-casualties-of-iraq-chemical-weapons.html?_r=0

    I have a story outlined (not for Kindle World) that makes use of that data. Apparently the thoughts at the time was that they were so damaged nobody could use them and many of the sites were just buried. Those areas are now under ISIS control.

    If you are looking for a source of radio active material in the US, it’s all over the place in the Hanford Reservation. Some of it is undocumented because it’s fallen off the radar. Getting most of it would involve serious radiation exposure, but it’s there and a credible source for a story – everybody’s favorite is in Russia, but there is Hanford if a domestic source is needed for literary convenience. I plan to use it as well, but feel free, there is a lot to go around.

    I read the list of countries and was momentarily surprised to see Australia (I’ve always regarded Australia) as an ally, on the list but a bit of research made it clear why it’s on the list. It should be listed with an asterisk since the head guy was kicked out by Kerr (who was our ‘guy’).


    • Russell Blake  –  Wed 24th Jun 2015 at 3:30 pm

      Right, but we use chemical weapons (tear gas) on protestors at Ferguson, so chemical weapons (which we know Iraq had due to the Iran war, as well as because we helped him get them, as the article you posted states: “built in close collaboration with the West”) should hardly be a surprise or justification for invading a country. The President and his stooges didn’t stand up and say, “Oh, crap, the Iraqis have mustard gas, which we know because we helped them with it, so now we need to invade.” He said “They have nukes that can hit us within 45 minutes (or Israel, I forget which, but I’m pretty sure it was us, as it was an “imminent threat”).

      Of course, it was a lie. It’s widely understood to be a lie now, it was widely understood to be one then (most intelligence services argued their data showed no such thing), but he’d been planning to invade Iraq for a few years due to Saddam’s stated goal of leaving OPEC and pumping as much oil as he damned well felt like, threatening the interests of US oil companies (price), and even worse, would no longer accept dollars, only something of tangible value, like a gold-backed dinar. That made him public enemy number one with the banks. So suddenly Saddam had to go, and the convenient lie was WMDs were going to get us. It’s a variation on an old lie we’ve used countless times. Gulf of Tonkin – a lie. Spanish attacking one of our warships in Cuba – a lie. No advance knowledge of Pearl Harbor – a lie. Our leaders lie with regularity to embroil us in war. War makes the banks rich, the weapons manufacturers and army suppliers rich, the government more powerful, and the people broker and with less basic freedoms. It’s a great racket. Actually, there’s a book written by the most decorated marine General in history, titled “War is a Racket.” Most have never read it. They should.

  4. Fitch
    Wed 24th Jun 2015 at 3:51 pm

    Neither I, or Bush, said anything about those chemical weapons being a reason for invasion. I just noted, with evidence, that they were there. I was surprised it hadn’t made the news at the time, but it didn’t. I don’t know why.

    I can’t conflate teargas and Sarin or Chlorine gas as being in the same category. Tear gas, non lethal, is more like the stun-gun of gasses. I was exposed to tear gas in training on three occasions when I was in the Army. It wasn’t fun, but it was not deadly.

    I wasn’t exposed to chlorine or Sarin, obviously.

    I don’t think Bush thought it was a lie at the time. In fact, unless he knew it was false, it wasn’t a lie. I think he, the president, believed what he said. I’ve made statements in my life that I believed were true, but which turned out not to be upon further investigation, or when additional data was revealed. Everybody has. They weren’t intentional misrepresentations.

    That said, every single government on the planet has engaged in intentional misrepresentation for self serving purposes including the Vatican.

    There are no Angels, but I’m not convinced we are even close to the worst in that regard. We are the biggest target. We gave Europe back to the Europeans twice. Do we get some points for that?


    • Russell Blake  –  Wed 24th Jun 2015 at 6:33 pm

      We’ll have to disagree on that one. I think it was a baldfaced lie, he knew it was a lie, and because that’s how things get done in Washington, he did what he needed to do in order to accomplish what he wanted for the corporate interests that drove the agenda.

      • Fitch  –  Wed 24th Jun 2015 at 6:41 pm

        You could be right. I did some looking. What had me doubting was that his Dad could have gotten it done, taken Iraq, during Desert Storm. They had a lot of forces there and Saddam was on the run.

        The timing might be the key if the situation that precipitated it developed between Desert Storm and the post 911 era.


        • Russell Blake  –  Wed 24th Jun 2015 at 8:30 pm

          Remember that our ambassador pretty much gave Saddam the green light to invade Kuwait? And then we went, oops, he read our signals wrong? Desert Storm was a warning that we could and would do whatever we wanted if he got too big for his britches. Just as our invasion of Panama on a pretext was a reminder to Central America that we could and would do whatever we felt like, regardless of sovereignty. The list goes on and on. Vietnam. Laos. Cambodia. Nicaragua. El Salvador. Guatemala. Afghanistan.

          Consider Cuba. We can encircle Russia with nukes, and that’s okay. But if they try to even that up a little by putting nukes in Cuba? We’ll risk nuclear war to enforce our double standard.

          There isn’t enough white space in these comments to cover the myriad examples, but I could go on for years. Read some of the links in that list – they’re fascinating.

  5. Fitch
    Wed 24th Jun 2015 at 4:55 pm

    I spent most of my career working on government contracts for private contractors (Rockwell, and later Boeing when Boeing bought Rockwell – I loved working for Boeing). It was an interesting experience. But the most interesting part wasn’t the work (which was fascinating), it was the history of how the projects were funded – the gyrations that went on in the circles of congress to get them funded. With one exception, everything I worked on was a Large Scale Technical Project, LSTP. The FFTF (Fast Flux Test Facility), The CRBRP (Clinch River Breeder Reactor Plant) and the International Space Station (which didn’t start out to be International at all). The most interesting part of those projects to a non-technical person would be what was involved in getting them funded.

    If one looks at large scale projects in history, the Brooklyn Bridge and Mount Rushmore, for example, the process of trying to obtain a social consensus to go forward with them, to pay for them, is a pretty interesting part of the story. It was the same with the Space Station.

    The mission that sold the Space Station to Congress when it was one vote from cancelation wasn’t science, it was political. It was sold to congress as providing jobs to scientists from the busted up and broke Soviet Union that would otherwise be available to Iran and other countries to do some sort of evil (unspecified) thing. I remember when that happened.

    Mount Rushmore didn’t start out to be what it became, and it wasn’t located there.

    The other fun part was related to the government running on an annual budget (at least in theory). Projects aren’t funded for the duration, they are funded for the next year. That practice leads to a lot of suboptimal management decisions by the government agencies whose very existence depends on the project continuing.

    Every single major design review on the Space Station was accompanied by a high level meeting, held at some other location, where they redesigned the whole thing, by fiat, to get (at least in theory) it back in line with the politically contrived budgets. The design claimed credit for the stage of review and technical maturity based on the old design and proceeded as if it applied to the new one. Trust me, it didn’t. There isn’t any margin in space condo design.

    The program was saved by the Russians being over two years late with their first part of it (the FGB AKA Zarya with mated with our Node 1 AKA Unity on the second mission). Their delay gave NASA a chance to do the integration testing that was needed but hadn’t been budgeted, and the program turned into a huge technical success.

    It’s up there working.

    I don’t have a problem believing that economic motives are behind wars. In fact I’d believe that money and power are behind almost all of them one way or the other. I don’t think anybody fights them because they are fun. They aren’t.

    What is surprising to me is that people are shocked that the situation is what it is. I mean, it’s run by people. They haven’t redesigned the human race, it’s still the same as it was when the weapons were clubs.


  6. Brian
    Wed 24th Jun 2015 at 6:55 pm

    Interesting list, but without the surrounding context it’s a bit misleading–“Oh My God the US set up ALL THESE COUPS!”

    Reasonable minds can differ and on some of these one can argue that the ousters or attempted coups were, even if not done with the purest of intentions, beneficial to society (not just the US) at large. It’s easy to quote Star Trek’s Prime Directive as the ideal to aspire to, but in reality that’s next to impossible to put into practice. Bush might have invaded Iraq because of oil prices, but we can also agree that Saddam Hussein was an evil, murderous SOB that deserved to be ousted. And Castro is no angel, either.

    This is NOT to excuse the clearly poor choices the US made in the past, just a call for us to step back, remember the context, and look at the broader implications beyond the hidden agendas.

    And yeah, I know the “last temptation is the greatest treason / to do the right thing, but for the wrong reason.”

    • Russell Blake  –  Wed 24th Jun 2015 at 8:07 pm

      No nation is without guilt. But remember that we were just fine with the murderous, evil bastard until he decided to do something contrary to US oil interests – just as we’re fine supporting the Saudis even though they operate one of the most repressive regimes on the planet. We’re fine with brutal despots as long as they’re our brutal despots.

      See, here’s how I see it: If you operate your military policy and clandestine network for the enrichment of US corporations and banks, you can always find an excuse for your actions. “Look at how bad X is!” Reality is that far fewer Iraqis suffered under the harsh rule of Saddam than have suffered under US-led occupation. We always say we’re doing things to Free The People – it’s the most common excuse under the sun. The reality is usually that in order for us to free them, many of them must die, and their country must crumble into chaos. Witness the mess that Lybia is now. We do it constantly, we interfere with other sovereign nations in a way that is openly a declaration of war were it done to us, and then we rationalize it away. I’m pretty sure the estimated million and climbing who died in Iraq due to our war crimes there (yes, destroying infrastructure like water carrying and purification is a war crime, as is attacking hospitals and a host of other things we’ve done, not to mention torture) aren’t particularly happy to have been “liberated.” But hey, Chevron’s price per barrel stayed reasonably stable, so it was all good.

      That doesn’t really wash for me. Just as it doesn’t wash for the millions dead in Central America so United Fruit could have cheaper labor. Or the tens of thousands dead when Clinton sent a couple of missiles into Sudan and destroyed what we knew was a pharmaceutical plant. Or our support of the Indonesian genocide. These are war crimes. Doesn’t matter what the post-hoc rationalization is. You either condemn all war crimes, or you are forced to apply a double standard like the U.S. does, where our war crimes are okay because it’s us, but their’s aren’t. The fact is that every U.S. President since WW2 is guilty of war crimes under the same law we used in Nuremberg to hang people. That’s the truth. It’s an uncomfortable one, but it’s still the truth. Arguing that somehow the world is better with a million dead Iraqis and the region in chaos is hard to reconcile with our noble purpose.

      It’s also the reason that so many places hate us. It’s not because of our freedom. It’s because we’re the most dangerous bunch on the planet. Listen again to the US reps discussing orchestrating the coup in the Ukraine and consider we’re now rapidly cycling toward a new Cold War, for starters, and see how the post hoc rationalization works when we’re all facing nuclear Armageddon again because we felt like causing a problem for Russia (see, we hate competition, and they’re spearheading a competitive approach to currency our bankers can’t game). That’s reality. A bunch of bloodthirsty zealots are trying to protect corporate profits and an unsustainable system, so they’re trying to create as much world conflict as humanly possible. That’s our government at work.

      But here’s the kicker: With the passage of TPP, the American people will be learning that their government has been obviated by the corporations that operate it behind the scenes. Now, they won’t even have to use a pretext to get their way. It’s a sad day, and one that makes me hang my head at what the noble experiment has become. As all noble experiments ultimately wind up when humans are involved.

      Here’s a marvelous link that’s a must watch on presidential war crimes, by Noam Chomsky.

  7. Olaf
    Thu 25th Jun 2015 at 2:07 pm

    The list is missing El Salvador.

    • Russell Blake  –  Thu 25th Jun 2015 at 2:34 pm

      Yup. And that was brutal. I was there in the distant past, and the country never recovered.


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