Wednesday, October 06, 2004

More Trials of HK, Part 2

This is a continuation of the previous post. Here is a quick summary of 3 episodes detailed by Hitchens in which Kissinger allowed massacres and coups to happen without US intervention or condemnation, and in fact they were sometimes approved and/or supported.

In 1970, Pakistan democratically elected Mujibar Rahman, whose politics were the opposite of the previous military regime of General Khan (who had not allowed open elections for the previous 10 years). The military regime decided they wanted to stay in power after all, and this regime began to murder those who protested, at numbers somewhere between 500,000 to 3 million. Nixon/Kissinger had a good relationship with Khan and in fact supplied weapons to the regime, and when General Khan began massacring the protestors, the US said nothing and did nothing to condemn these actions. Reasons given: don't want to threaten fragile relationship with China, even though we had other mutual friends with China and this would not threaten it.

In Cyprus in the early 1970s, Kissinger was aware of a planned coup of democratically elected leader, Presidenet Makori, whose unarmed rule in a peaceful country was being challenged by both Greece and Turkey. The Greek dictator decided to mount a coup -- and was a client of US military aid and sympathy. Kissinger was encouraged by Senator William Fulbright to stop the coup, but Kissinger ignored him. Later, Kissinger also approved of an invasion by Turkey. Why? Kissinger's connections to Greek and Turkish armies. Kissinger still denies even knowing about these situations (claiming there was just too much else going on in the world for him to pay attention to such a small country), which according to this telephone transcript is now obviously not true.

Finally, the nightmare that is East Timor (click here for an eye-popping National Security Archives document). In 1975, Ford and Kissinger were visiting Indonesia a few days before Indonesia invaded East Timor. Kissinger and Ford denied knowing anything about the planned invasion which the above link completely disproves. In fact, this document says the two men gave Indonesia a “greenlight to the invasion,” and outfitted with American weaponry, leading to the death of somewhere between 100,000 and 230,000 East Timorese (out of a population of 600,000).

Yep. This book leaves you with a heavy heart. American history isn't pretty, that's for sure. And this was only 30 years ago. It’s pretty unfathomable how many people can die because one guy doesn’t step in the way.

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