Saying No to the Warmongers

NEW YORK – The accord struck in Vienna to rein in Iran’s nuclear activities has warmongers fulminating. Citizens worldwide should support US President Barack Obama’s brave effort to outmaneuver them, taking heart from the fact that the signatories include not just the United States, but all five permanent members of the UN Security Council plus Germany.

Many of the warmongers are to be found in Obama’s own government agencies. Most Americans struggle to recognize or understand their country’s permanent security state, in which elected politicians seem to run the show, but the CIA and the Pentagon often take the lead – a state that inherently gravitates toward military, rather than diplomatic, solutions to foreign-policy challenges.

Since 1947, when the CIA was established, the US has had a continuous semi-covert, semi-overt policy of overthrowing foreign governments. In fact, the CIA was designed to avoid genuine democratic oversight and provide presidents with “plausible deniability.” It has gone on to topple dozens of governments, in all regions of the world, with no accountability there or at home.

I recently examined one period of CIA activity in my book To Move the World: JFK’s Quest for Peace. Soon after Kennedy assumed the presidency in 1961, he was “informed” by the CIA of its plot to overthrow Fidel Castro. Kennedy felt stuck: Should he sanction the planned CIA invasion of Cuba or veto it? New to the gruesome game, Kennedy tried to have it both ways, by letting it proceed, but without US air cover.