Western European News Digest
Neocons Push New Destabilizations at Prague Event
June 10 (EIRNS)In Europe, particularly in the aftermath of right-wing Synarchist Nicolas Sarcozy's election as President of France, the international "war party" is planning new mayhem, and leading American neocons are smack in the middle of the action.
Illustrative of the acceleration of the "ring around Russia" destabilization was President Bush's cameo appearance in Prague, on June 5, at a two-day conference of leading figures within the Committee on the Present Danger apparatus, billed as an international conference on "Democracy and Security." The conference was co-sponsored by: the Prague Security Studies Institute, whose international advisory board is headed by former Czech President Vaclav Havel; Spain's Foundation for Social Studies and Analysis (FAES), headed by former Spanish Prime Minister José María Aznar; and the Adelson Institute for Strategic Studies at the Shalem Center in Jerusalem, headed by Natan Sharansky.
Along with scores of "dissidents" from Russia, Belarus, Syria, Iran, and Saudi Arabia, the list of speakers and participants included many leading American neoconservatives, including Jeffrey Gedmin (Radio Free Europe), Reuel Marc Gerecht (AEI), Bruce Jackson (Project on Transitional Democracies), Ronald Lauder, Clifford May (Foundation for the Defense of Democracy), Joshua Muravchik (AEI), Michael Novak (AEI), Richard Perle (AEI), Harold Rhode (Department of Defense, Office of Net Assessment), Michael Rubin (AEI), and Joe Wood (Deputy Assistant to the Vice President for National Security Affairs). Richard Dearlove, who was the head of MI6 under Tony Blair during the run-up to the Iraq War, and who is now affiliated with the Henry Jackson Society, also spoke.
Several of the Prague participants arrived in the Czech capital straight from a May 30-June 1 conference of the Foundation for the Defense of Democracy in the Grand Bahamas, on the topic "Confronting the Iranian Threat: The Way Forward," which was keynoted by Mr. "Clash of Civilizations" himself, Dr. Bernard Lewis.
Euro Election Results Continue Ungovernability Pattern
June 10 (EIRNS)Recent election results and government crises in Europe reflect the worldwide policy morass. In Belgium, elections took place today in the three entitiesWallonia, Flanders, and Brussels City, amidst the economic crisis and French-Dutch divide, so that forming a government will be a major feat. Preliminary results show that the Liberal Democratic Party of the incumbent governing coalition of Premier Guy Verhofstadt, came in second or third in Flanders, behind the Christian Democrats (30%), and perhaps behind the extreme-right Flemish Interests Party (20%). Wallonia has a still different line-up, where the Socialist Party won, with an estimated 31% of the vote.
In Ireland, where the Fianna Fail Party of Bertie Ahern's ten-year government won recently, a government has not yet been formed. A rift persists between Fianna Fail and the Green Party, its former coalition partner. Grounds for current conflict and differences include a miserable set of "issues"such as whether to impose a carbon tax (wanted by the Greens) or not, and how to accommodatenot stopglobalized agriculture.
Cheney's Rendition-and-Torture Goes on Trial in Italy
June 9 (EIRNS)As President Bush arrived in Italy today, the first trial of the Cheney-Bush Administration's "extraordinary rendition" program opened in Milan. On trial are 26 Americans, mostly believed to be CIA officers and officials, and seven Italians, including the former head of SISMI, Italy's military intelligence service. None of the Americans, and few of the Italians, were present in court.
The case revolved around the abduction of Osama Mustafa Hassan Nasr, known as Abu Omar, from Milan in 2003; he was flown from the U.S. air base in northern Italy to Egypt, where he was imprisoned for three years and brutally tortured.
Kroll Associates Running Italian Destabilization Scandals
June 8 (EIRNS)The international investigative company Kroll Associates, widely considered to be an entity of British Intelligence used for covert operations, has been found at the center of a number of scandals aimed at destabilizing the Italian government, according to reports from Italy. The scandals, targeting both left and right, have increased the "ungovernability factor" in Italian and European politics.
The latest involves Foreign Minister Massimo D'Alema, who is personally engaged in efforts to establish peace in the Middle East. Il Tempo says this may be the beginning of a new wave of "Tangentopoli" scandals, which will expand to implicate others in the Italian political leadership, as they are now implicating D'Alema and other prominent figures in the center-right coalition.
On June 6, another such scandalinvolving the Italian Revenue Guard (a division of the Italian armed forces charged with stopping financial crimes)almost provoked a government crisis in the Senate while Lyndon LaRouche was meeting with Sen. Lidia Brisca Menapace there on June 6 (see this week's InDepth for the LaRouche-Menapace dialogue).
NATO Discusses Putin Missile Defense Proposal
June 13NATO defense ministers will be discussing today, Russian President Vladimir Putin's proposal to utilize the Qabala radar in Azerbaijan, instead of building a new radar facility in the Czech Republic, for an anti-missile defense system. There will also be a meeting today of the NATO-Russia Council, where Russian Defense Minister Anatoly Serdyukov will be providing details of the Putin proposal for their deliberation. Any consensus within NATO would, of course, be contingent on an agreement between the U.S. and Russia. U.S. Secretary of Defense Robert Gates will also be attending the meeting.
In Albania, Bush Calls for Kosovo Independence
June 10 (EIRNS)Met with protests in other European countries, President George Bush was enthusiastically welcomed in Albania June 10, where he called for Kosovo's independence from Serbia. During a press conference with Prime Minister Sali Berisha, he stated that, "at some point in timesooner rather than lateryou've got to say 'Enough is enough. Kosovo is independent,' and that's the position we've taken."
Bush's manic remarks were clearly intended as a provocation of Russia, which opposes Kosovo's independence and has threatened to veto a pro-independence UN resolution.
Blair Dismissed as 'Yesterday's Man' at G-8 Summit
June 8 (EIRNS)Tony Blair got the full "has-been" treatment from Russia and the rest of the G-8 Summit attendees, according to all the British press, from the tabloids like the Daily Express to the stuffy Financial Times today. Blair, labeled "yesterday's man," was most effectively dismissed with what the Express called a "withering" attack from Russian Deputy Finance Minister Sergei Storchak.
After Blair's blather about his plans for a "frank talk" with Russian President Vladimir Putin at the June 6-8 summit, and his having advising British business not to "risk" investing in Russia, Storchak told the press at Heiligendamm, "I doubt business will react emotionally to what I believe are the rather emotional words of a person who is, after all, an ex-prime minister." Blair's planned talks with Putin might not even be held, the Express said.
Even George Bush was dismissive. Blair was frozen out of both the Bush-Putin talks and Bush's talks with German Chancellor Angela Merkel.
Rome Trial Points to Links Between Genoa 2001 and 9/11
June 14 (EIRNS)In an ongoing trial in Rome, deputy chief of police Michelangelo Fournier stated that the police had acted with excessive brutality in storming the headquarters of an anti-G-8 demonstration in a Genoa school, on July 21, 2001, La Repubblica and other Italian press reported today.
What makes this revelation significant, is that the Genoa events were, in a sense, a general rehearsal for 9/11. Anti-aircraft missiles had been installed as a consequence of an intelligence warning against possible al-Qaeda airplanes or drones being flown against the G-8 summit.
Fournier is a respected police official, who just last week succeeded in controlling "autonomist" violence in the center of Rome, during the anti-Bush demonstrations, without using excessive force. Fournier implicitly pointed the finger at police chief Gianni De Gennaro, who has already come under attack from leftist parliamentary groups concerning the management of the Genoa situation. In its 2001 coverage of the Genoa events, where a demonstrator was killed, EIR wrote that violence could erupt thanks to a combined action of the "Black Bloc" autonomists, and of a fifth column at a high level inside the police and the Italian government.