Spitfire List Web site and blog of anti-fascist researcher and radio personality Dave Emory.

Lecture Series  

L‑10 The Electoral Coup of the Year 2000

Down­load MP3s: Part 1 Part 2 Part 3 (Approx. 108 min­utes)

Pruss­ian mil­i­tary the­o­reti­cian Karl Von Clause­witz observed that “war is the con­tin­u­a­tion of pol­i­tics by oth­er means.” By the same token, pol­i­tics could be seen as “the con­tin­u­a­tion of war by oth­er means.” This lec­ture ana­lyzes the elec­tion of the year 2000 as con­sti­tut­ing a coup d’e­tat and high­lights a num­ber of dif­fer­ent aspects of the polit­i­cal land­scape in 1999 and 2000. The dis­cus­sion details what was, in effect, a mil­i­tary-style oper­a­tion. In that con­text, a num­ber of vio­lent actions (some of them lethal) were con­duct­ed in com­bi­na­tion with a strate­gic pro­gram of polit­i­cal and psy­cho­log­i­cal war­fare. These ele­ments can be under­stood in the con­text of a mil­i­tary par­a­digm and, togeth­er, they doomed the Gore cam­paign.

The talk begins with brief dis­cus­sion of the desta­bi­liza­tion of Pres­i­dent Clin­ton’s admin­is­tra­tion. This desta­bi­liza­tion frac­tured the ranks of the Demo­c­ra­t­ic Par­ty and made it extreme­ly dif­fi­cult for Gore to polit­i­cal­ly exploit the eco­nom­ic suc­cess of the Clin­ton years.

The sub­stan­tive part of the lec­ture begins with the prob­a­ble mur­der of JFK, Jr. and the effect his death may have had on the cam­paign. The avail­able evi­dence sug­gests the dis­tinct pos­si­bil­i­ty that the crash that took his life was not an acci­dent. Con­trary to news reports at the time, the weath­er was clear and the vis­i­bil­i­ty was from between two and five miles. Kennedy was about four min­utes from the air­port, was with­in visu­al con­tact radius of the island and had radioed the air­port to get per­mis­sion to land. He did not broad­cast a “May­day” dis­tress call. Eye­wit­ness­es report­ed Kennedy’s plane approach­ing the air­port at an alti­tude of less than 100 feet. (This con­trasts marked­ly with the “radar track” which was leaked to the media, show­ing Kennedy’s plane begin­ning its “grave­yard spi­ral” at an alti­tude of 1800 ft. It is extra­or­di­nar­i­ly unlike­ly that Kennedy would have been at that alti­tude when com­ing in for a land­ing. Con­trary to press reports at the time of Kennedy’s death, he was an excel­lent pilot with over 300 hours of fly­ing time. Some reports erro­neous­ly said he had as lit­tle as 35 hours.) Eye­wit­ness­es report­ed see­ing a “flash” or explo­sion over the water when Kennedy’s plane dis­ap­peared. Most impor­tant­ly, numer­ous media polit­i­cal pun­dits report­ed that Kennedy was going to be offered either the Pres­i­den­tial or (as is most like­ly) Vice-Pres­i­den­tial nom­i­na­tion, in an attempt to assure vic­to­ry for the Democ­rats in the 2000 elec­tion! His death elim­i­nat­ed that pos­si­bil­i­ty.

Mr. Emory also not­ed that, at the time of the death of JFK, Jr., his father’s assas­si­na­tion was once again on the front burn­er. Boris Yeltsin pub­licly gave Pres­i­dent Clin­ton the KGB files on Oswald (which demon­strat­ed that they felt Oswald was prob­a­bly an Amer­i­can agent.) (Tabloids report­ed, per­haps incor­rect­ly, that JFK, Jr. was inter­est­ed in inves­ti­gat­ing his father’s mur­der.)

The lec­ture high­lights the pho­ny “oil short­age” of the late 1970s against the back­ground of the alleged­ly real “oil short­age” of the year 2000. (The Secret War Against the Jews; pp. 333–335.) In The Secret War Against the Jews, the authors draw on vet­er­an Amer­i­can and British intel­li­gence offi­cers in order to doc­u­ment col­lu­sion among ele­ments of George Bush’s CIA, the petro­le­um indus­try and the gov­ern­ment of Sau­di Ara­bia. Togeth­er, these ele­ments fab­ri­cat­ed an alleged Sovi­et petro­le­um short­fall, as well as a pho­ny “decline” in Sau­di oil pro­duc­tion. Career oil indus­try pro­fes­sion­al George Bush gave Jim­my Carter a CIA report that false­ly fore­cast a world-wide oil short­age. (Idem.) The report also rumi­nat­ed about the pos­si­bil­i­ty that the Sovi­ets might invade the Mid­dle East in order to aug­ment alleged­ly fail­ing domes­tic pro­duc­tion. The goal of the report was to influ­ence Jim­my Carter to increase oil pro­duc­tion and sell weapons to Sau­di Ara­bia in order to “defend against the Sovi­et men­ace”. (Idem.) Carter and Ener­gy Sec­re­tary James Schlesinger instead respond­ed with a pro­gram of con­ser­va­tion. This enraged the petro­le­um inter­ests, which then respond­ed with the pho­ny “gas short­age” of 1979. This gas short­age helped to pro­pel Jim­my Carter from office. (Schlesinger had resigned his post ear­li­er in Carter’s admin­is­tra­tion.)

For­mer CIA direc­tor Bush became Vice-Pres­i­dent under Rea­gan and (accord­ing to some sources) became “pow­er behind the throne.” Even­tu­al­ly, it became evi­dent that the CIA report was false, and that the Mid­dle East was swim­ming in oil. Nonethe­less, the CIA/Saudi/petroleum indus­try fraud was suc­cess­ful in con­ning con­sumers into accept­ing dra­mat­i­cal­ly high­er gaso­line prices. Those ris­ing prices desta­bi­lized the Carter admin­is­tra­tion, and per­suad­ed Con­gress and the Pres­i­dent to autho­rize a Sau­di mil­i­tary buildup. That Sau­di build-up tipped the mil­i­tary bal­ance of pow­er in favor of the Arabs. Most impor­tant­ly, the pho­ny oil short­age set the stage for an unprece­dent­ed mil­i­tary build-up dur­ing the Rea­gan admin­is­tra­tions. That mil­i­tary build-up tripled the U.S. nation­al debt in eight years.

The talk high­lights the man­ner in which the Rea­gan-Bush cam­paign con­spired with the Mus­lim fun­da­men­tal­ist forces in Iran in order to assure Carter’s defeat–the “Octo­ber Sur­prise” of 1980. Mr. Emory spec­u­lates that the rise in petro­le­um prices in the year 2000 was delib­er­ate­ly con­trived to dri­ve up oil prices, aggra­vate vot­ers, weak­en the econ­o­my and pave the way for the acces­sion of George W. Bush.

In this very close Pres­i­den­tial race, the small per­cent­age of the vote gar­nered by Green Par­ty can­di­date Ralph Nad­er did, as some crit­ics had warned, prove to have deci­sive impact. Mr. Emory presents the Nad­er can­di­da­cy as con­sti­tut­ing, in effect, one part of a “pin­cers move­ment.” (This is a mil­i­tary strat­e­gy, in which an attack­ing force simul­ta­ne­ous­ly strikes at both of the ene­my’s flanks.) The Nad­er can­di­da­cy pinned down the Gore cam­paign by attack­ing it from the ide­o­log­i­cal left, as Bush was attack­ing the Vice Pres­i­dent from the ide­o­log­i­cal right. By lim­it­ing Gore’s pop­ulist appeal and attack­ing his envi­ron­men­tal record, Nad­er denied vital strate­gic ground to the Gore cam­paign. (More than any oth­er main­stream politi­cian, Gore was iden­ti­fied with envi­ron­men­tal caus­es.) A vote for Nad­er was indeed a vote for Bush, par­tic­u­lar­ly in Flori­da. (Nad­er got more than 90,000 votes in Flori­da.) Note that the “Green Move­ment” (although pro­gres­sive for the most part) has sur­pris­ing his­tor­i­cal links with fas­cism.

In addi­tion to ana­lyz­ing the Nad­er cam­paign from a strate­gic per­spec­tive, Mr. Emory detailed some aspects of Nader’s finan­cial and pro­fes­sion­al his­to­ry that have escaped pop­u­lar atten­tion. In par­tic­u­lar, the dis­cus­sion high­lights the hyp­o­crit­i­cal invest­ment pol­i­cy that Ralph Nad­er has exe­cut­ed. (“How Nad­er Prof­its While He Preach­es” by Jeff McMa­hon; bushwatch.net/nader.htm; 10/27/2000.) Nad­er owns up to $250,000 worth of shares of Fideli­ty Mag­el­lan Fund, a firm that is heav­i­ly invest­ed in many of the cor­po­ra­tions that Nad­er has been most vocal in crit­i­ciz­ing. (Idem.) Among those firms that Fideli­ty invests in are Hal­libur­ton Oil, head­ed by Dick Cheney until short­ly after his nom­i­na­tion as Bush’s run­ning mate. Fideli­ty also invests in Occi­den­tal Petro­le­um, a firm that has been crit­i­cized by envi­ron­men­tal­ists.

Al Gore’s moth­er’s trust owns a sig­nif­i­cant block of Occi­den­tal stock. Gore’s pop­ulist cre­den­tials have been impugned by Nad­er Vice-Pres­i­den­tial can­di­date Winona La Duke because of that stock. (Idem.) The lec­ture under­scores dis­turb­ing aspects of Nader’s anti-labor activ­i­ties, and his avoid­ance of social issues. Mul­ti-mil­lion­aire Nad­er has fierce­ly resist­ed attempts at union­iza­tion by the under­paid employ­ees of his orga­ni­za­tions. (“1.75 Cheers for Ralph” by Doug Hen­wood; Left Busi­ness Observ­er; 10/1996 [#74].) Mr. Emory sets forth Nader’s refusal to per­mit pub­li­ca­tion of CIA/corporate col­lu­sion in his Multi­na­tion­al Mon­i­tor (Idem.)

Anoth­er effec­tive ele­ment of polit­i­cal and psy­cho­log­i­cal war­fare that worked against Gore was the Wen Ho Lee case. A Tai­wanese Amer­i­can cit­i­zen who had been employed as a nuclear sci­en­tist at the Los Alam­os Nation­al Lab­o­ra­to­ry, Lee was false­ly charged with espi­onage in 1999, trig­ger­ing a Repub­li­can-led con­gres­sion­al inves­ti­ga­tion. That inves­ti­ga­tion hint­ed that Lee’s alleged espi­onage on behalf of the Peo­ple’s Repub­lic of Chi­na was linked to “Chi­nese” cam­paign dona­tions to the Clin­ton admin­is­tra­tion. The case gar­nered much jour­nal­is­tic atten­tion, and cast a pall of sus­pi­cion on Asian Amer­i­cans employed in sen­si­tive nation­al secu­ri­ty-relat­ed jobs. Most impor­tant­ly, it fig­ured in the crit­i­cism that the Repub­li­cans direct­ed toward the Democ­rats dur­ing the 2000 cam­paign. Al Gore’s appear­ance at the much-bal­ly­hooed Bud­dhist Tem­ple fundrais­er was uti­lized by the Repub­li­cans to race bait the Gore cam­paign by asso­ci­at­ing it with “the yel­low per­il.”

In this lec­ture, Mr. Emory sets forth the details of one of the arms deals that Oliv­er North’s Iran-Con­tra oper­a­tives arranged — a mis­sile sale from the Peo­ple’s Repub­lic of Chi­na to the Con­tras. The Amer­i­can-sup­plied Con­tra gueril­las were look­ing for weapons with which to effec­tive­ly com­bat the San­din­istas’ Sovi­et-sup­plied attack heli­copters. North arranged for a ship­ment of SA‑7 sur­face-to-air mis­siles to be sent to the Con­tras. The doc­u­ment­ed shar­ing of nuclear weapons infor­ma­tion with the PRC dur­ing the Rea­gan admin­is­tra­tion was char­ac­ter­is­tic of the type of quid pro quo arrange­ment that Spe­cial Pros­e­cu­tor Lawrence Walsh found to be com­mon­place dur­ing the course of the Iran-Con­tra oper­a­tions. Like oth­er nations that sup­plied weapons to the Con­tras for the Rea­gan Admin­is­tra­tion, the Chi­nese expect­ed favors in return for their efforts. Since the alleged theft of nuclear secrets took place dur­ing the Rea­gan and Bush years, they can­not be blamed on Clin­ton. The “theft” may well have been an out­growth of the SA‑7 deal.

Nonethe­less, the Repub­li­cans have attempt­ed to pin the blame on the Clin­ton admin­is­tra­tion, cam­paign­ing on the false­hood that the Democ­rats com­pro­mised Amer­i­can nuclear secu­ri­ty in exchange for cam­paign con­tri­bu­tions. Among the most vocal of those pin­ning the blame for the Lee affair on the Clin­ton admin­is­tra­tion was Judge James Park­er, a Rea­gan appointee. (The New York Times; 9/14/2000; p. A1.) The pro­gram high­lights the fact that Lee and his wife had coop­er­at­ed with the CIA in con­nec­tion with his Chi­nese con­tacts. (San Jose Mer­cury News; 8/11/2000; p. 10A.) Mr. Emory also notes that Ener­gy Sec­re­tary Bill Richard­son was sav­aged by Judge Park­er and the Repub­li­cans, and spec­u­lates about the pos­si­ble use of the Lee/PRC con­tacts as a cam­paign dirty trick. (The New York Times; 9/14/2000; p. A1.) Richard­son at one time was con­sid­ered a pos­si­ble Vice Pres­i­den­tial run­ning mate for Al Gore. In addi­tion, the Lee case helped to dis­cred­it the Depart­ment of Ener­gy and made it dif­fi­cult for that Depart­ment to fol­low Clin­ton’s direc­tive to help hold down the price of oil. This added to the effec­tive­ness of what Mr. Emory believes was a replay of the oil price gam­bit of 1979–80.

The dis­cus­sion then turns to the death of Mis­sour­ri Gov­er­nor Mel Car­na­han. The New York Times not­ed that the Democ­rats had a slim chance to retain con­trol of the Sen­ate. (“Democ­rats Have Out­side Chance to Wrest Sen­ate” by David E. Rosen­baum; New York Times; 10/16/2000; p.1.) One of the races that offered the pos­si­bil­i­ty of a Demo­c­ra­t­ic vic­to­ry was the cru­cial race for the Sen­ate seat held by John Ashcroft (R‑Missouri.) (Idem.)

The day after that obser­va­tion was print­ed, Ashcroft’s Demo­c­ra­t­ic oppo­nent, Gov­er­nor Mel Car­na­han, was killed in the crash of a pri­vate plane. (“Gov­er­nor, 2 Oth­ers Fly­ing in Bad Weath­er” by Jim Salter; San Fran­cis­co Exam­in­er; 10/17/2000; ppA‑1, A‑12.) An inves­ti­ga­tor not­ed that the wreck­age was found in ” very small pieces spread over a large area,” more char­ac­ter­is­tic of a bomb explo­sion than the acci­den­tal crash of an air­craft. (Idem.) The crash came too late for the Democ­rats to nom­i­nate an alter­na­tive can­di­date. (Idem.) The lec­ture under­scores con­tra­dic­tions in the offi­cial account of the tragedy. The plane was ini­tial­ly report­ed to have crashed in very bad weath­er and (pos­si­bly) to have been struck by light­ning. (Idem.) Sub­se­quent accounts indi­cate that the weath­er was not par­tic­u­lar­ly bad for fly­ing and that the pilot had report­ed gyro­scope trou­ble. (“Doomed Plane Appar­ent­ly Had Instru­ment Trou­ble” by John W. Foun­tain; New York Times; 10/18/2000; p. A20.)

Analy­sis of Car­na­han’s death sug­gest­ed that his demise would lessen the Democ­rats’ chances of win­ning con­trol of the Sen­ate and reduce Gore’s chances of win­ning Mis­souri, a cru­cial swing state. (“Equa­tion Changed by a Fatal Crash” by James Dao; New York Times; 10/18/2000; pp. A1, A20.) The state Demo­c­ra­t­ic infra­struc­ture also was pes­simistic about the out­come for the Sen­ate race. (“Gov­er­nor Mourned as Pub­lic Ser­vant” by Stephanie Simon; San Jose Mer­cury News; 10/18/2000; p. 15A.) One should not fail to note the super­fi­cial sim­i­lar­i­ty to the death of John F. Kennedy Jr. Although Ashcroft’s wid­ow took his seat when he was posthu­mous­ly elect­ed, Bush car­ried Mis­sour­ri (a key swing state.) The role of Car­na­han’s death in this cam­paign should not be dis­count­ed. Note, also, that John Ashcroft became Attor­ney Gen­er­al in the Bush admin­is­tra­tion and presided over the imple­men­ta­tion of many of the dra­con­ian, uncon­sti­tu­tion­al legal revi­sions insti­tut­ed by Dubya.

As dis­cussed above, the “oil short­age” of 1979–80 com­bined with the humil­i­a­tion of the Unit­ed States at the hands of Islam­ic fun­da­men­tal­ists in Iran to assure Jim­my Carter’s elec­tion defeat. An “oil short­age” and “Mid­dle East­ern ter­ror­ism” were front and cen­ter dur­ing the 2000 cam­paign, as well. Ten­sions in the Mid­dle East were height­ened by the bomb attack on the destroy­er U.S.S. Cole. Al Qae­da and the com­bat­ants of Osama bin Laden were behind the attack. (“U.S. Says Yemen Attack­ers Used Inside Infor­ma­tion” by David A. Vise and Ver­non Loeb; San Fran­cis­co Chron­i­cle; 10/13/2000; p. A6.) The lec­ture reviews infor­ma­tion about the prob­a­ble role of the Bin Laden fam­i­ly in sup­ply­ing a por­tion of the invest­ment cap­i­tal that was used to estab­lish George W. Bush’s first oil com­pa­ny. The pos­si­bil­i­ty that petro­le­um-relat­ed ele­ments of U.S. intel­li­gence and what Mr. Emory calls “the Under­ground Reich” may have been behind the attack on the Cole should not be too read­i­ly cast aside.

The attack was used by the Bush cam­paign to attack the Democ­rats. Once again, Mr. Emory under­scored the sig­nif­i­cance of the increase in oil prices for the econ­o­my, the stock mar­ket and the Gore cam­paign. Oil price increas­es have his­tor­i­cal­ly led to reces­sions and a falling Dow Jones Indus­tri­al aver­age and, dur­ing Pres­i­den­tial elec­tion years, this has led to the incum­bent being vot­ed out of office. (“Can Al Gore Sur­vive Ris­ing Oil Prices and Falling Stocks?” by Floyd Nor­ris; New York Times; 9/22/2000; p. C1.) Once again, the fact that Dubya’s father was the head of the CIA and the pres­ence in the polit­i­cal process of ele­ments inti­mate­ly involved with the Agen­cy’s covert oper­a­tions estab­lish­ment is not to be over­looked.

Much of the lec­ture sets forth infor­ma­tion about the role in the 2000 elec­toral coup played by the CIA-linked, anti-Cas­tro Cuban milieu in Flori­da. The angry crowd that men­aced (and con­se­quent­ly affect­ed) the Mia­mi-Dade elec­tion offi­cials was sum­moned by Radio Mam­bi, close­ly con­nect­ed to the Anti-Cas­tro Cuban com­mu­ni­ty in Mia­mi. (“Miami’s Cuban Amer­i­cans May Get the Last Word” by Peter Dale Scott; Pacif­ic News Ser­vice; http://pacificnews.org; 12/4/2000.) The polit­i­cal milieu that gen­er­at­ed the furor over Elian Gon­za­lez is iden­ti­cal to that involved with intim­i­dat­ing the Mia­mi elec­tion offi­cials, and has his­tor­i­cal links to the Bush fac­tion of the CIA. (Idem.)

High­light­ing these con­nec­tions in more detail, the dis­cus­sion high­lights the role of the Cuban Amer­i­can Nation­al Foun­da­tion (CANF) and its founder Jorge Mas Canosa in set­ting up Radio Mam­bi. (“Mia­mi-Dade Reversal÷A Cuban ter­ror­ist Pay­back to Bush Fam­i­ly?” by Peter Dale Scott; Pacif­ic News Ser­vice; http://pacificnews.org; 12/7/2000.) Mr. Emory relates informed spec­u­la­tion that the CIA (under William Casey) pre­cip­i­tat­ed the found­ing of CANF in 1981. (Idem.) Two of Mas Canosa’s pro­teges in CANF were the broth­ers Guiller­mo and Igna­cio Novo, both impli­cat­ed in the assas­si­na­tion of for­mer Chilean Ambas­sador Orlan­do Lete­lier. (Idem.) The elder George Bush was close­ly con­nect­ed to this milieu, and deflect­ed inquiries into the Lete­lier assas­si­na­tion that led in the direc­tion of the CIA sup­port­ed coup in Chile. (Idem.)

The broad­cast also details the con­nec­tions of this milieu to Cuban-Amer­i­cans involved in the Con­tra sup­port effort in the 1980’s. (Idem.) Next, the dis­cus­sion illu­mi­nates the role of a Cuban-Amer­i­can splin­ter group (Vig­ilia Mam­bisa) in the agi­ta­tion that forced the halt­ing of the recount. (Unpub­lished update by Pro­fes­sor Scott to “Miami’s Cuban Amer­i­cans May Get the Last Word” by Peter Dale Scott; Pacif­ic News Ser­vice; http://pacificnews.org; 12/4/2000; made avail­able to Mr. Emory by a kind lis­ten­er.)

The talk also sets forth links between Flori­da Gov­er­nor Jeb Bush, the CANF milieu, the Con­tra sup­port effort, and the fail­ure of the Broward Fed­er­al Sav­ings & Loan Asso­ci­a­tion. (Unpub­lished update by Pro­fes­sor Scott to “Mia­mi-Dade Reversal÷A Cuban ter­ror­ist Pay­back to Bush Fam­i­ly?” by Peter Dale Scott; Pacif­ic News Ser­vice; http://pacificnews.org; 12/7/2000.)

An “ex” CIA offi­cer (Charles Kane) alleged­ly par­tic­i­pat­ed in a scheme to deliv­er some of the fraud­u­lent absen­tee bal­lots that helped tip Flori­da to Bush. (“Absen­tee Bal­lot Fraud in 5 Flori­da Coun­ties” by David E. Scheim; Asso­ci­at­ed Press; 12/7/2000; at http://www.campaignwatch.org.) The lec­ture high­light­ed the delib­er­ate and fraud­u­lent exclu­sion of African Amer­i­can vot­ers in Flori­da was dis­cussed. Many of them were labeled as “felons” and con­se­quent­ly pre­vent­ed from vot­ing.

In addi­tion, it turns out that the head of the polit­i­cal desk at Fox News (who led the media stam­pede to reas­sign Flori­da from Gore to Bush) was Jeb and “W’s” cousin John Ellis. (“One More elec­tion Embar­rass­ment for the Press: Bush Cousin” by Tom Rosen­stiel; The Los Ange­les Times; 11/15/2000; p. B9.) Ellis was in close tele­phone con­tact with Jeb and “W” on elec­tion night, appar­ent­ly feed­ing them polit­i­cal intel­li­gence on the elec­tion. (“News Exec­u­tive Called Races, and Bush” by Bill Carter; The New York Times; 11/14/2000; p. A17.) Ellis’ call led the media charge to reverse the call of Flori­da as being won by Gore. This was crit­i­cal to Bush’s suc­cess, because it cre­at­ed the impres­sion that Gore was a “sore los­er” and facil­i­tat­ed the capit­u­la­tion of the Democ­rats. The lec­ture also points out that Theodore Olson, the new Solic­i­tor Gen­er­al, was one of the lead attor­neys for the Bush cam­paign in Flori­da. (The Solic­i­tor Gen­er­al is often referred to as “the tenth Supreme Court Jus­tice.”)

Olson was heav­i­ly involved in the cam­paign to dis­cred­it Bill Clin­ton, as well. The ascent of Olson and Ashcroft to two of the most impor­tant posi­tions in the Depart­ment of Jus­tice could be said to com­plete the elec­toral coup of the year 2000. The lec­ture con­cludes with analy­sis of the “ener­gy cri­sis” in Cal­i­for­nia as a delib­er­ate­ly struc­tured desta­bi­liza­tion of the Cal­i­for­nia Demo­c­ra­t­ic elec­toral base. Cal­i­for­nia went heav­i­ly for Gore in 2000 and Gray Davis has been dis­cussed as a pos­si­ble oppo­nent for Bush in 2004. The Cal­i­for­nia “ener­gy cri­sis” may well be set­ting the stage for “the elec­toral coup of the year 2004.” (Record­ed on 2/24/2001.)


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