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Al Qaeda as paid mercenaries
I have often asserted that Al Qaeda are not a proxy force, but paid mercenaries. The USA started arming, training, equipping, and funding these mercenaries in 1980 to fight the Soviet occupiers in Afghanistan. President Reagan called them “Freedom fighters.” They were not Afghans, but Arabs that the USA imported from Libya and elsewhere.
If someone pays me to go to a foreign land and kill for them, then I am a mercenary for them.
During the U.S. war against Nicaragua’s leftist government and against leftist resisters in El Slavador, many of the U.S.-backed “Contra” terrorists were U.S.-paid mercenaries from foreign nations such as Argentina. Their staging area was U.S.-allied Honduras, just as the staging area for the Syrian mercenaries is U.S.-allied Turkey. As in Afghanistan, President Reagan referred to his Central American terrorist Contras as “patriots” and “freedom fighters.”
Osama Bin Laden was a ringleader for the U.S. mercenaries in Afghanistan, but he was technically not a mercenary himself, since Osama was from a rich Saudi family, and had his own money. However Osama was always under U.S. care and protection, and had nothing to do with 9-11.
Al Qaeda is not a definite group with fixed members, but a vague blanket term for U.S.-paid mercenaries, regardless of their origin, number, identity, or use. The Arabic term “Al Qaeda” means “the base.” Originally it denoted a list of Arabs who were willing to go the non-Arab Afghanistan and work as mercenaries against the occupying Soviets. The USA has used them ever since, for various purposes.
WHY USE MERCENARIES?
If you are an imperialist who wants to destroy a nation, and you do not want to send in your military, then you can bomb the nation and use terrorists (e.g. Libya) or you can use terrorists alone (e.g. Syria and Central America).
However, with native terrorists there is a limit to how many atrocities they will commit in their own land. Syrian Sunnis hate Syrian Alawites, for example, but not enough to massacre entire Alawite villages, including women and children.
The solution is to use small numbers of mercenaries (preferably sociopaths) who are from foreign lands, and therefore have no loyalty to the target nation’s people. You pay them to commit horrendous atrocities in order to trigger horrendous retaliations, thereby causing the target nation to be swept up in a firestorm of death, which includes government attempts to stop the death.
All of the mass murder in Syria is either done by U.S.-paid mercenaries, or is part of the atrocity-and-retaliation cycle that results from mercenary strikes.
Your terrorist mercenaries need not be numerous, and do not need to lead or organize the (unpaid) “rebel” natives. Instead, your mercenaries form tight death squads whose job is to move in quickly, slaughter whole towns, and vanish just as quickly, leaving the nation’s people to wipe each other out in the cycle of atrocity and counter-atrocity.
When sanity starts to return, and violence eases off, you pay your mercenaries to commit new atrocities and vanish, thereby re-igniting the firestorm.
It is easy to do this. The slaughter of an innocent child will drive any sane person mad. And since the slaughter of even one or two children ignites a firestorm, the number of paid mercenaries, again, can be quite small. The US-backed Contra terrorists in Central America consisted of foreigners (i.e. paid mercenaries) plus unpaid natives who were unhappy that the new Sandinista government in Nicaragua had cost them their jobs. The former worked for money. The latter worked for revenge. In all cases the central issue is power and money. Religious rhetoric is for public consumption in the corporate media
Meanwhile the corporate media claims that the target government commits all atrocities.
In addition to paying mercenaries, the USA pays firebrand Muslim clerics (outside the target nation) to deliver messages that motivate the native terrorists (inside the target nation.) This process is separate from the paid terrorist mercenaries, who do not care what the Muslim cleric says.
Such paid clerics (e.g. the mysterious Ayman al-Zawahiri) are also paid to issue disinformation that manipulates the native “rebels” in the target nation, plus the masses in the West. And since the paid clerics are themselves “terrorists” (who work for the USA) they are paid to help to legitimize the USA’s “war on terror.”
The corporate media calls Al Qaeda a group of Salafists and Wahabists. This further legitimizes the “war on terror,” since it makes Al Qaeda seem like a bunch of religious fanatics.
In reaity, the mercenaries have only one religion, which is money.
WHY THE MASS DENIAL ABOUT AL QAEDA?
We know that governments lie, but why do so many “progressive” and “anti-imperialist” bloggers believe the lies about Al Qaeda? (And they do believe the lies, if they deny that Al Qaeda are paid mercenaries). And why do they insist for example, that “Salafists” attacked the US site in Benghazi, even though Libyan Salafists are U.S. allies?
The answer has two aspects. First, bigotry, racism, and ethnocentrism are almost impossible to eradicate from any society. If I live in a peaceful part of the USA, then even if I claim to be “anti-imperialist” and “anti-racist,” it is natural for me to feel deep down that Muslims in foreign lands are “all crazy,” since they are “all killing each other.” And since imperialist violence begets madness in target nations, I associate this madness with the “madness” of Muslims in general.
Therefore I claim that “Salafists” did the Benghazi attack, and I justify my bigotry with baseless blather about “imperial blowback.” Yes, Libyan Salafists are pro-USA, but since they attacked the Benghazi site, this is more proof that they are “crazy,” and that the attack was “imperialist blowback” (which is a specious term with no clear definition).
Thus, even though I call myself “anti-imperialist,” my innate racism and bigotry makes me align with the imperialist program, which vitally depends on racism and bigotry.
The second factor in denial is simple vanity. Since I am smarter than everyone else, I summarily reject the views of everyone else. I reject as “ludicrous” any assertion that Al Qaeda are paid mercenaries, or that the Libyan Green resistance did the Benghazi strike.
I am an expert, both intellectually and morally. You are a peasant who needs mental and spiritual “guidance.” I am a high priest of morality with an inside track on God and morality.
Therefore, for the sake of your soul, you need to listen to my preaching (i.e. to my wild and unfounded guesses) about world events. You need to “believe” that Salafists did the Benghazi strike, and that Al Qaeda are not paid mercenaries. I am a saint. Everyone else is an immoral “disinformation agent."
So goes the denial process.
Greed, vanity, denial, and self-righteousness. They make the imperialist world go round.