Thursday, July 21, 2005

The CIA/OBL myth

I see Red Ken, with the aid of the BBC’s microphone, is off trumpeting his anti-American lies again. Yesterday he was blaming the west in general and the US in particular for the ills of the world.

And I think the particular problem we have at the moment is that in the 1980s... the Americans recruited and trained Osama Bin Laden, taught him how to kill, to make bombs, and set him off to kill the Russians and drive them out of Afghanistan.

That, like so much of what emanates from Ken Livinstone’s mouth, is simply untrue. As Richard Miniter noted 2 years ago, there were 2 separate rebellions against the Soviets. A local rebellion, and a rebellion made up of foreign, Islamic extremists. The former was funded in part by the CIA. The latter was funded by Saudi Arabia.

Not only have the former CIA agents in charge of the operation denied ever funding or training OBL, so has OBL. In an interview with arch anti-American Robert Fisk, OBL said:
Personally neither I nor my brothers saw evidence of American help.
I realize that the myth of the CIA “creating” Bin Laden melds nicely with the general Livingstone/BBC view of the US as a mlaignant force in the world, but if either of them actually have any evidence whatsoever to support this charge, they should make it known. Otherwise, they should keep it to themselves.

For those who might argue that the BBC is just reporting what someone else said, note that the BBC often provides contradicting, corrective information if it quotes someone saying something that it believes to be false. That it didn’t in this case suggests that it didn’t see anything wrong with what Livingstone said.

(Posted from Wisconsin, USA)


Anonymous Mark said...

There's a common misconception, particularly among the Left here that "we trained OBL". Like you said, the CIA members who were involved in the Afghan operation in the 1980s have denied that they did any such thing. I saw an interview with one of them, who knew OBL. He said that he didn't see him that much, and that what activities he did see him involved in, it was in making contacts and providing financial support for the Mujahideen fighters. It's been the view of our intelligence community that Al Qaida was an outgrowth of that activity. Al Qaida has been a network of loosely linked organizations, which was formed from making contacts with Mujahideen sympathizers. That's what OBL did. Once the Russians were forced out, OBL just kept the network going. Once the network grew in strength, he also became its spiritual leader, and its chief financier.

Once people hear this it tends to diminish OBL's importance in people's minds, I think. But he would nonetheless be a valuable person to capture.

10:01 AM  
Anonymous Mark said...

I read the BBC article. Livingstone sounds just plain uninformed. You could easily mistake him for someone just out of college who hasn't experienced the real world. Not someone who should be governing a major metropolitan city. Is there a way to recall the guy?

10:23 AM  

Post a Comment

<< Home