The Dark Edges of Democracy Promotion: CIA’s WaPo Decries Move to De-fund CIA’s NED

by Scott Creighton

The CIA’s central nest of Mockingbird assets, the Washington Post, has published a global opinion piece by Josh Rogin decrying the fact that way down deep in the Trump administration’s 2019 Budget Proposal is a little piece of legislation that would partly de-fund the CIA’s National Endowment of Democracy (NED) and restructure it in such a way as to impose the slightest bit of government oversight on the organization. This is unacceptable to Josh apparently so of course he calls up the spirit of Ronald Reagan and goes to work defending the indefensible by wrapping it in “Reagan Revolution” and “democracy promotion” rhetoric:

Speaking to the British Parliament in 1982, President Ronald Reagan called on the United States “to foster the infrastructure of democracy” to help ensure that people around the world were empowered to determine their own fates. Now, at this increasingly fraught moment for freedom around the world, the Trump administration wants to dismantle that infrastructure.

Buried in the State Department’s fiscal 2019 budget request is a proposal not only to slash the budget of the National Endowment for Democracy but also to disassemble its relationships with its core institutes, including the National Democratic Institute and the International Republican Institute. For the NED and those institutes, the proposal is an assault not only on their organizations but also on the pro-democracy mission they are dedicated to.

“If implemented, the proposal would gut the program, force crippling layoffs and the symbolic meaning would also be shattering, sending a signal far and wide that the United States is turning its back on supporting brave people who share our values,” said NED President Carl Gershman…” Josh Rogin

I found out about this opinion piece when someone reTweeted another war-monger, regime-change apologist’s lamentations about this perceived assault on the CIA’s version of “democracy” across the world. I, of course, had to respond:

The proposal isn’t as melodramatic as Josh would have you believe. The funding is but a small part of NED’s dirty slush-fund money they use to pay-off our “brave” traitors in other countries in service to our color revolution and regime change programs. The big problem for him and his fellow Mockingbirds is that there might end up being a little OVERSIGHT imposed on the operations they like to conduct… in the dark of night.

Oversight. You know… democracy? That kind of thing.

Josh Rogin knows all about destabilizing politicians and legislative administrations himself. Back in the day, Josh snuck into a meeting with then Sec. of State John Kerry and recorded him saying something he didn’t want to get out to the general public. Josh did that on behalf of a foreign nation.. Israel. Josh is Jewish by the way.

Rogin was accused of sneaking into a private meeting and recording private statements made by Secretary of State John Kerry who posited that Israel could become an “apartheid state.”[5][1] Invitees had all previously agreed that they would not record or report on speakers’ remarks without permission.[5][1] Rogin posted an article on the Daily Beast which forced Kerry to issue a letter of apology to Jewish and Israeli leaders.[5][1] Rogin defended his actions stating that he was not in attendance at the meeting; and that he received the information from a recording.[5][1] He later admitted that he made the recording himself.[6]

Josh’s screed focuses on a letter written by John McCain and Lindsey Graham and others who suggest the OMB Director cut that part of the 2019 budget out of the proposal… for “democracy” and all that. As we all know, terrorists in Ukraine, Libya and Syria have no better friend in Washington than John “Bomb Iran” McCain. And Lindsey Graham is a rare kind of gun-grabbing republican who just said Russia is the main problem in the Middle East. He also seems to think launching an all out war on North Korea for no reason would be “worth it

So with advocates like that, you can understand my skepticism when it comes to Josh’s concerns for “democracy promotion” across the globe.

So let’s take a closer look at the National Endowment for Democracy shall we?

The National Endowment for Democracy is not about establishing democracies around the world. To more accurate, it’s about undermining them on behalf of our $$national interests$$ and that has been it’s founding principle since it’s inception:

How many Americans could identify the National Endowment for Democracy? An organization which often does exactly the opposite of what its name implies. The NED was set up in the early 1980s under President Reagan in the wake of all the negative revelations about the CIA in the second half of the 1970s. The latter was a remarkable period. Spurred by Watergate – the Church committee of the Senate, the Pike committee of the House, and the Rockefeller Commission, created by the president, were all busy investigating the CIA. Seemingly every other day there was a new headline about the discovery of some awful thing, even criminal conduct, the CIA had been mixed up in for years. The Agency was getting an exceedingly bad name, and it was causing the powers-that-be much embarrassment.

Something had to be done. What was done was not to stop doing these awful things. Of course not. What was done was to shift many of these awful things to a new organization, with a nice sounding name – The National Endowment for Democracy. The idea was that the NED would do somewhat overtly what the CIA had been doing covertly for decades, and thus, hopefully, eliminate the stigma associated with CIA covert activities.

It was a masterpiece. Of politics, of public relations, and of cynicism…

From 1994 to 1996, NED awarded 15 grants, totaling more than $2,500,000, to the American Institute for Free Labor Development, an organization used by the CIA for decades to subvert progressive labor unions…

NED describes one of its 1997-98 programs thusly: “To identify barriers to private sector development at the local and federal levels in the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia and to push for legislative change … [and] to develop strategies for private sector growth.” Critics of Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic, a socialist, were supported by NED grants for years…

As described in the “Elections” and “Interventions” chapters, NED successfully manipulated elections in Nicaragua in 1990 and Mongolia in 1996; helped to overthrow democratically elected governments in Bulgaria in 1990 and Albania in 1991 and 1992; and worked to defeat the candidate for prime minister of Slovakia in 2002 who was out of favor in Washington. And from 1999 to 2004, NED heavily funded members of the opposition to President Hugo Chavez in Venezuela to subvert his rule and to support a referendum to unseat him.

Additionally, in the 1990s and afterward, NED supported a coalition of groups in Haiti known as the Democratic Convergence, who were united in their opposition to Jean-Bertrand Aristide and his progressive ideology, while he was in and out of the office of the president…

The Endowment played an important role in the Iran-Contra affair of the 1980s, funding key components of Oliver North’s shadowy “Project Democracy” network, which privatized US foreign policy, waged war, ran arms and drugs, and engaged in other equally charming activities. At one point in 1987, a White House spokesman stated that those at NED “run Project Democracy”. This was an exaggeration; it would have been more correct to say that NED was the public arm of Project Democracy, while North ran the covert end of things. In any event, the statement caused much less of a stir than if – as in an earlier period – it had been revealed that it was the CIA which was behind such an unscrupulous operation…

And between 1990 and 1992, the Endowment donated a quarter-million dollars of taxpayers’ money to the Cuban-American National Foundation, the ultra-fanatic anti-Castro Miami group. The CANF, in turn, financed Luis Posada Carriles, one of the most prolific and pitiless terrorists of modern times, who had been involved in the blowing up of a Cuban airplane in 1976, which killed 73 people. In 1997, he was involved in a series of bomb explosions in Havana hotels, and in 2000 imprisoned in Panama when he was part of a group planning to assassinate Fidel Castro with explosives while the Cuban leader was speaking before a large crowd” William Blum

At a time when democracy was reaching it’s tired fingers into the dirty little world of the Deep State, the National Endowment for Democracy was created to take on the role of the CIA and other little covert, back-stabbing weasel agencies and do so in such a way as to provide a kind of NGO cover for the dirty little wars they like to fight against democracy in the world.

A brief look at some of the players at the NED will give you a better understanding of the kind of organization it is.

Zalmay Mamozy Khalilzad, Director National Endowment for Democracy

From 1985 to 1989, Khalilzad served in President Ronald Reagan‘s Administration as a senior State Department official advising on the Soviet war in Afghanistan and the Iran–Iraq War...In this role, he developed and guided the international program to promote the merits of a Mujahideen-led Afghanistan to oust the Soviet occupation.

Between 1993 and 2000, Khalilzad was the Director of the Strategy, Doctrine, and Force Structure at the RAND Corporation…. While at RAND, Khalilzad also had a brief stint consulting for Cambridge Energy Research Associates, which at the time was conducting a risk analysis for Unocal, now part of Chevron, for a proposed 1,400 km (890 mile), $2-billion, 622 m³/s (22,000 ft³/s) Trans-Afghanistan gas pipeline project which would have extended from Turkmenistan to Afghanistan and further proceeding to Pakistan. Khalilzad was a signatory of the letter from members of the Project for the New American Century to President Bill Clinton sent on January 26, 1998, which called for him to accept the aim of “removing Saddam Hussein and his regime from power” using “a full complement of diplomatic, political and military efforts.”[4]

After the terrorist attacks of 9/11, President Bush came to rely on Khalilzad’s Afghanistan expertise. Khalilzad was involved in the early stages of planning to overthrow the Taliban and on December 31, 2001 was selected as Bush’s Special Presidential Envoy for Afghanistan…

In December 2002 the President appointed Khalilzad to the position of Ambassador at Large for Free Iraqis with the task of coordinating “preparations for a post-Saddam Hussein Iraq.”[5]

Since 2009, Khalilzad has served as the President of Khalilzad Associates, LLC an “international advisory firm that serves clients at the nexus of commerce and public policies, helping global businesses navigate the most promising and challenging international markets.”[18] Khalilzad Associates and its parent company Gryphon Capital Partners counts among its clients international and US companies, which are primarily interested in doing business in Iraq and Afghanistan. According to Khalilzad, these include companies in the sectors of energy, construction, education, and infrastructure.[19]

Victoria Nuland, Director National Endowment for Democracy

She served as the principal deputy foreign policy adviser to Vice President Dick Cheney and then as U.S. ambassador to NATO

She was nominated to serve as Assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs in May 2013 and sworn in to fill that role in September 2013.[8] During her confirmation hearings, she faced “sharp questions” about a memo she had sent outlining the talking points that would be used by the Obama administration in the days shortly after the 2012 Benghazi attack.[9] Nuland was sworn in on September 18, 2013.[10]

In her role as assistant secretary, she managed diplomatic relations with 50 countries in Europe and Eurasia, as well as with NATO, the European Union and the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe.[11] She was the lead U.S. point person for the Ukrainian crisis. Nuland was a key figure in establishing loan guarantees to Ukraine, including a $1 billion loan guarantee in 2014, and the provisions of non-lethal assistance to the Ukrainian military and border guard..

On February 4, 2014, a recording of a private phone call between Nuland and U.S. ambassador to Ukraine, Geoffrey Pyatt,.. In their phone conversation, Nuland and Pyatt discussed who should be in the government after Viktor Yanukovych’s ouster…

As of January 9, 2018, she has been CEO of the Center for a New American Security.[4]

The Center for a New American Security (CNAS) is a Washington, D.C.-based think tank established in 2007 by co-founders Michèle Flournoy and Kurt M. Campbell. It specializes in the United Statesnational security issues. CNAS’s stated mission is to “develop strong, pragmatic and principled national security and defense policies that promote and protect American interests and values.”[3] CNAS focuses on terrorism and irregular warfare

ELLIOTT ABRAMS, Director National Endowment for Democracy

Abrams gained notoriety for his involvement in controversial foreign policy decisions regarding Nicaragua and El Salvador.

His appointment by Bush was controversial due to his conviction in 1991 on two misdemeanor counts of unlawfully withholding information from Congress during the Iran–Contra affair investigation…

According to the Washington Post article, in a 1984 appearance on the program Nightline, Abrams clashed with Aryeh Neier,[13] the Executive Director of Human Rights Watch[14] and with the leader of Amnesty International, over the Reagan administration’s foreign policies. They accused him of covering up atrocities committed by the military forces of U.S.-backed governments, such as those in El Salvador, Honduras, and Guatemala, and the rebel Contras in Nicaragua

In early 1982, when reports of the El Mozote massacre of hundreds of civilians by the military in El Salvador began appearing in U.S. media, Abrams told a Senate committee that the reports of hundreds of deaths at El Mozote “were not credible,” and that “it appears to be an incident that is at least being significantly misused, at the very best, by the guerrillas.”[15] The massacre had come at a time when the Reagan administration was attempting to bolster the human rights image of the Salvadoran military. Abrams implied that reports of a massacre were simply FMLN propaganda and denounced U.S. investigative reports of the massacre as misleading. In March 1993, the Salvadoran Truth Commission reported that over 500 civilians were “deliberately and systematically” executed in El Mozote in December 1981 by forces affiliated with the Salvadoran government.[16]

Unrepentant Reaganite Abrams claimed that Washington’s policy in El Salvador was a “fabulous achievement.”[19]

The Observer has claimed that Abrams had advance knowledge of, and “gave a nod to,” the Venezuelan coup attempt of 2002 against Hugo Chávez.[30]

On December 23, 2016, Abrams, a strong supporter of Israel, criticized Obama for “undermining Israel’s elected government, prevent its action against Iran’s nuclear weapons program, and create as much daylight as possible between the United States and Israel.”[34]

Andrew Card, Chairman National Endowment for Democracy

White House Chief of Staff under President George W. Bush from 2001 to 2006, as well as head of Bush’s White House Iraq Group.

the White House Iraq Group – an arm of the White House whose purpose was to inform the public about the purpose of the 2003 invasion of Iraq. The task force was set up in August 2002 by White House Chief of Staff Andrew Card and chaired by Karl Rove to coordinate all of the executive branch elements in the run-up to the war in Iraq. However, it is widely speculated that the intention of the task force was “escalation of rhetoric about the danger that Iraq posed to the U.S., including the introduction of the term ‘mushroom cloud'” [1].

In response to the Yellowcake forgery issue, the White House Iraq Group devised this strategy[11] to combat critics…

… Records and notes of White House Iraq Group activities were subpoenaed by Special Counsel Patrick Fitzgerald as part of the investigation into the leak of CIA operative Valerie Plame‘s identity.

The two main parts of the NED that Josh Rogin seems concerned with are “the National Democratic Institute and the International Republican Institute” as he claims “the proposal is an assault not only on their organizations but also on the pro-democracy mission they are dedicated to.”

Since Josh doesn’t provide us with any insight or history of these organizations, let’s take a look at them then, shall we?

International Republican Institute, John McCain is Chair of their Board of Directors

National Democratic Institute, Madeleine K. Albright, Chairman Board of Directors

These institutions have been involved in far more nasty programs overseas than Wikipedia is allowed to publish. They were certainly involved with the neo-Nazi color revolution in Ukraine and funding terrorist Contras in Latin America and destabilizing Yugoslavia when their elected government decided to drift a little too far to the left back during the Clinton administration. From Haiti to Cuba to Venezuela and across Latin America, they have been at the heart of torture, disappearances, political murder and police state repression on massive scales for a very long time… all of course in the name of “democracy promotion”

These are the kinds of activities that Josh is talking about when he writes about the need to prevent these organizations from coming under any kind of state oversight

“The Trump administration proposal would allow the NED to continue issuing small grants but move funding of its core institutes to the State Department, where the IRI and NDI would have to compete with private contractors. The organizations involved argue that keeping funding decisions at arm’s length from the State Department allows the NED network to do things on the edges of the pro-democracy movement that the U.S. government can’t or won’t, such as supporting Chinese dissidents in ways that upset Beijing.” Josh Rogin

Things done on the edges of the “pro-democracy” movements in the dark little corners of our world. That’s what the NED and it’s various branches are doing… in our names. And Josh here is concerned, with his “pro-democracy” loving friends like John McCain, Lindsey Graham, Madeline Albright, Andy Card, Elliot Abrams, Victoria Nuland and Zalmay Khalilzad … that somehow the Trump administration is going to hinder all that “democracy” they’ve been “promoting” for decades.

I should note, back in 2015, Josh Rogin went on Chris Cuomo’s show to explain how “ISIS” decided to blow up a Coalition plane but instead they changed their minds and attacked a Russian one for no apparent reason. Russia has been a target of the NED for a LONG TIME. This was the downing of MetroJet Flight 9268 and Josh helped fellow Mockingbird Chris blame “ISIS” for the event:

In this month’s edition, the publishers at Dabiq have published an article in which they explain how they blew up Metrojet Flight 9268. They say at first they planned on targeting one of the NATO “coalition of the willing” members, but for some unknown reason, decided to shift gears and blow up a Russian jet instead. That is a nice touch. Brings it back home to the Western audiences I suppose.

“After resolving to bring down a plane belonging to a nation in the American-led Western coalition against ISIS, the target was changed to a Russian plane”.

No explanation as too why they changed targets is offered.

They claim they did it with this: the Schweppes Bomb of Doom.” me 2015

Of course that makes one think about the NED funding anti-Cuban terrorists who blew up planes and backing the formation of al Qaeda which ended up sharing mailboxes with “ISIS” in Syria… right?

Are these some of the darker edges of the “pro-democracy” movements Josh Rogin seems to be defending here? The kinds of things the U.S. government can’t or wont OFFICIALLY sanction?

We will probably never know for sure unless of course there is some kind of OVERSIGHT imposed on the NED and their affiliated organizations… but we already know that will never happen.

Yes, as Rogin makes clear, congress will undoubtedly reject this minor revision to the Reagan Revolution mandate set forth in the birthplace of neoliberal globalization… London. The days of Church committees are well behind us just so long as our terrorist freedom fighters still have sappy Mockingbirds doing their bidding in D.C. like McCain, Graham and yes, Josh Rogin.

But it’s still a telling moment in history, is it not?

But the Trump administration’s assault on democracy promotion can be expected to continue. The effects of it are already evident: Dictatorships are presenting their model as preferable for the developing world.” Josh Rogin

Anything and anyone is a dictatorship that doesn’t bow to our “national interests” and suckle at the teat of the masters of the universe like Josh here does. Its a sort of depressing world view I guess but it’s honest.

The oddity is the continuing assault on the Trump administration from our CIA Mockingbirds at the Washington Post. You would think they would have given him a break at this point. After all, he’s given them practically every dirty little thing they wanted.

But you give an inch, they take a mile as they say and spooks hanging out in Langley are probably taught that credo from day one of spook training. I don’t know. Never done it. Maybe I should ask Anderson Cooper. Or Josh.

I think the greater fear these corporate terrorists are facing is less about the end of these programs and more about their practices coming to see the light of day because, after all, the whole point of them was to provide a kind of white wash, a normalization of the kinds of dirty little awful things the CIA used to do in the dark corners of the world when no one with a moral center was watching. You shed a little light on them, take away their cloak of humanitarianism and hit em with some transparency and oversight… and what you end up with is an American public that is disgusted by the viciousness and criminality that the “democracy promotion” cottage industry has been getting away with since the glory days of Iran Contra and the importation of crack into our very own inner cities.

Amazing what the threat of a little light does to the overly educated, morally challenged cockroaches in D.C., ain’t it? Almost as if they know their entire ideology is something to be dreadfully ashamed of.

I guess the temporary insanity defense is out the window.

12 Responses

  1. Great article, Scott.
    I hope Congress and President Trump hold fast and keep that little piece of ‘legislation that would partly de-fund the CIA’s National Endowment of Democracy (NED)’ … keep it in the budget.

  2. Reblogged this on deinvestiture.

  3. NED, such a wonderful organization, isn’t it? Incidentally, regarding Tor: yep, another tool used for regime change. Yasha Levin’s book deserves much wider exposure. And the documents he uploaded via his blog are absolutely damning. I’ve read only a portion of them. He, like a few of us, figured out a long time ago that the whole thing was another op. Read the FOIA documents!

  4. At Least We Know Bigfoot Is Real …

    March 2018

    … Because we have lived in The United States of America for years and years and decades we realize that when something like the Parkland school shooting occurs we must inherently question the account given of the event by our government and our media because they have demonstrated time and time again they are totally untrustworthy … …

    But TODAY we are talking about Bigfoot (and aliens), and at least we know they are real

    Welcome to the March Edition
    of Penn Magazine

    Mike Palecek, editor
    Chuck Gregory, publisher

    Also here in flip-page format:

    • Meant to put mine below on a reply to yours here. Lost my marbles somewhere—most of them, anyway.

  5. Hey, Mike

    Good to see you here.

    Still working my way through “Crusher in Wonderland”—second time.

    More later.

  6. Hey, Scott

    The “Recent Comments” section of this machine seems to be stuck right here at my last comment—my March 6th to Mike Palecek at 12:20 pm. Nothing new has showed up anywhere here since.

    Maybe I’m just freaked. Lots on my mind.

    Let me know if that’s the case, please.

    • Roy, there should be two more comments after your ‘reply to Mike’.
      Click on ‘Home’… the box above Scott’s blog page … maybe you just need to refresh the pages?
      hope it helps…. 🙂

      • They’re there, Jan—one from LizH and one of yours. Everything is OK here then, except for my head.

        Time for me to quit computing, for real.

        Thanks for your help. Keep at it long as you can, Jan.

        • You do fine, Roy. I learned the trick from Scott because i did the same as you… couldn’t find the new comments…. LOL
          Hope you all are not getting too much snow. I feel sorry for the North Eastern states….
          take care

          • The stuff is piled around everywhere, Jan. Can’t wait to see some green grass, get out to the garden.

            You take care, too.

            Hi to Scott. I hope he’s feeling better now.

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