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The 7 “Blind” men and the US Elephant

The famous Indian story of the Blind Men and the Elephant is a metaphor highlighting that while one’s subjective experience can be true, it can also be limited by its failure to account for other truths or a totality of truth. A similar metaphor can be used to try to explain the hidden forces guiding the US Government

From 1975 to 1976 the Church Committee in the Senate and the Pike Committee in the House attempted unsuccessfully to curtail the power of US intelligence agencies. The Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), in particular, was investigated to see if it was a “rogue elephant” or under the strict control of the President and the executive branch. However, besides some damning revelations outlined in the “whitewashed” report and some minor oversight changes, the “rogue elephant” was allowed to roam free.

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Contemporary mainstream pundits now openly describe these hidden forces as a “shadow government,” a “corporatocracy” or a “deep state” controlling American politics. None, however, can do justice to what truly is an amorphous, complex and intricate web of overlapping entities. All who have tried to define who really governs America have essentially behaved as “blind” men. The Power Elite Mills, C. Wright Best Price: $6.00 Buy New $12.72 (as of 12:35 UTC - Details)

The Sociologist

The first “blind” man was the Sociologist Professor C. Wright Mills. His book, The Power Elite, which was published in 1956, was the first full-scale study of the structure and distribution of power in the United States.

Mills examined how the concentration of power had pooled within three main hierarchies. “There are a few thousand people in the United States that control almost all aspects of society. These few thousand individuals hold leadership posts in the political, military, and economic spheres. An extremely high percentage of these individuals were educated in the same schools, come from upper-class families, belong to the same public clubs, and often the same secret societies. The members of this ruling group hold the same interests and values. And this group self-selects the majority of its members.”

According to Mills the three hierarchies of power – political, military, and economic – in the United States are interlocking and form a ruling class whose members, at the time, could generally be grouped into one of the following six distinct groups – the Social Register (today replaced by Forbes’s annual top 500 richest people in the world list), the Celebrities, the Chief Executives, the Corporate Rich, the Warlords and the Political Directorate.

The people at the highest levels of these institutions see each other socially and look after one another by doing each other favours because they not only serve together on the boards of directors of corporations, charitable organisations, and other bodies, but they also share a mutuality of life experiences, educational backgrounds, and economic situations. This self-interest is of course to the detriment of the American people who they derogatorily refer to as the masses.

Mills highlights the “revolving door” between government, military, and corporations that help maintain the power elite’s dominance over American life. He explains that when cabinet members, senators, and top generals and other military officials retire, they usually become corporate executives; whereas conversely, corporate executives often become cabinet members and other key political appointees.

The power elite uses the conglomerate media to broadcast their opinions to the masses,which believe, and regurgitate what the conglomerate media run by the elites, feed them. The masses are merely easily manipulated spectators led to believe that they are making the decisions: “This is why there won’t be a change in the values and course of direction of the United States. One of the biggest myths of American society is that the middle class has an influence on which direction and course our society takes. The American middle class does not have interests or values in common with the power elites that control and run US society.”

A 19th century Cassandra, Mills’ dire omen on how the power elite would gradually but collusively gain control of every aspect of life was an amazingly accurate analysis of the true nature of power and privilege in America. The Invisible Government Dan Smoot Best Price: $31.88 Buy New $120.09 (as of 10:55 UTC - Details)

The Law Enforcer

The second “blind” man was former FBI agent Dan Smoot. His self-published book, The Invisible Government, which was omitted from The New York Times Best Sellers List of 1962, sold over 1 million copies.

Smoot’s book charts the gradual infiltration of the US Government by the secret society known as the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR). The CFR was established in 1921 by Colonel Edward M. House, who had links to “international bankers in New York” as well as “great financial institutions.”

Smoot explains that the secret society’s key aim was to push the American government into foreign entanglements. “The purpose of the Council on Foreign Relations was to create (and condition the American people to accept) what House called a ‘positive’ foreign policy for America– to replace the traditional ‘negative’ foreign policy which had kept America out of the endless turmoil of old-world politics and had permitted the American people to develop their great nation in freedom and independence from the rest of the world.”

By 1927, the Rockefeller family’s Rockefeller Foundations and Funds, along with the Carnegie Foundations and later the Ford Foundation began to finance the CFR and its principal publication, the quarterly magazine Foreign Affairs.

Many CFR members had come to occupy important positions in government, education, the press, the broadcasting industry, business, and finance, or in some multi-million-dollar tax-exempt foundation. Smoot explains how by 1945 the CFR, and various foundations and other organizations interlocked with it had virtually infiltrated and taken over the US State Department.

By the time that Smoot published the Invisible Government, the CFR was by 1962, “Boasting among its member’s Presidents of the United States (Hoover, Eisenhower, and Kennedy), Secretaries of State, and many other high officials, both civilian and military.”

The US corporations were also funding other global secret societies. The “Bilderbergers”, also known as the Bilderberg Group, derived their name from the location of their first meeting – the Bilderberg Hotel, Oosterbeck, The Netherlands, in May 1954. Smoot describes them as another powerful group involved in the internationalist web: “The group consists of influential Western businessmen, diplomats, and high governmental officials. Their meetings, conducted in secrecy and in a hugger-mugger atmosphere, are held about every six months at various places throughout the world. His Royal Highness, Prince Bernhard of The Netherlands, has presided over every known meeting of the Bilderberger Group.”

He then explicitly cites the corporate links behind the Bilderberg Group: “Prince Bernhard is known to be an influential member of the Societé Generale de Belgique, a mysterious organization which seems to be an association of large corporate interests from many countries. American firms associated with the society are said to be among the large corporations whose officers are members of the Council on Foreign Relations and related organizations.” The Secret Team: The C... L. Fletcher Prouty Best Price: $11.58 Buy New $11.87 (as of 06:10 UTC - Details)

The Warlord

The third “blind” man was retired US Air Force Col. L. Fletcher Prouty, who was an early critic of the CIA that stood at the head of the then founded security state. In his book titled The Secret Team, published in 1973, he charts the birth of the modern security state through President Harry S. Truman, who in late 1947, signed into law the National Security Act.

He explains how this seminal event “in addition to establishing the Department of Defense (DoD) with a single Secretary at its head and with three equal and independent services — the Army, Navy, and Air Force — also provided for a National Security Council and the Central Intelligence Agency.”

Prouty served from 1955 to 1964 as the focal point for contacts between the CIA and the DoD on matters pertaining to “special operations” – official language for covert activities. In this capacity, Prouty worked directly with CIA Director Dulles and his brother John Foster, who was then Secretary of State, and also with several different Secretaries of Defense and chairmen of the Joint Chiefs, and many other government officials. Prouty had become disillusioned with the CIA after witnessing that they “had been diverted” from the original assignment that he and the legislators who drafted the Act had so carefully planned.

In his book, Prouty debunks the CIA’s most important “cover story” which is that of an “Intelligence” agency. Prouty affirms that while the CIA does make use of “intelligence” and “intelligence gathering”, this is largely a front for its primary interest – clandestine operations.

In his book, Prouty quotes Truman to explain how “the CIA had gone into clandestine operations and had been ‘injected into peacetime cloak-and-dagger operations’, and ‘has been so much removed from its intended role.’”

The diversion from its intended role was according to Prouty, “attributable to the growing and secret pressures of some other power source.” Again quoting Truman, Prouty explains how the CIA had become: ”a symbol of sinister and mysterious foreign intrigue.”

Prouty goes on to define this other power source. “The CIA is the center of a vast and amorphous mechanism that specializes in Covert Operations … or as Allen Dulles always called it, ’Peacetime Operations.’ In this sense, the CIA is the willing tool of a higher level High Cabal, that may include representatives and highly skilled agents of the CIA and other instrumentalities of the government, certain cells of the business and professional world and, almost always, foreign participation.”

Within this unique position, the CIA can prod the other arms of government into doing its bidding. Prouty explains how “[t]he CIA’s greatest strength derives from its ability to activate various parts of the U.S. Government, usually the Defense Department, with minor inputs designed to create a reaction.”

Expanding on the evolution of the security state, Prouty explains how “The CIA did not begin as a Secret Team, as a ‘series of tiny but powerful cabals’, as the ‘invisible government’, or as members of the ‘secret elite’. But before long it became a bit of all of these.”

His dissection of the secret team also includes the ever-present “revolving door” between government and corporations: “At the heart of the Team, of course, are a handful of top executives of the CIA and of the National Security Council (NSC), most notably the chief White House adviser to the President on foreign policy affairs. Around them revolves a sort of inner ring of Presidential officials, civilians, and military men from the Pentagon, and career professionals of the intelligence community. It is often quite difficult to tell exactly who many of these men really are because some may wear a uniform and the rank of general and really be with the CIA and others may be as inconspicuous as the executive assistant to some Cabinet officer’s chief deputy. Out beyond this ring is an extensive and intricate network of government officials with responsibility for, or expertise in, some specific field that touches on national security or foreign affairs: ‘Think Tank’ analysts, businessmen who travel a lot or whose businesses (e.g. import-export or cargo airline operations) are useful, academic experts in this or that technical subject or geographic region, and quite importantly, alumni of the intelligence community — a service from which there are no unconditional resignations. All true members of the Team remain in the power center whether in the office with the incumbent administration or out of office with the hard-core set. They simply rotate to and from official jobs and the business world or the pleasant haven of academe.”

The gradual strategic infiltration of government departments also appears to be a specialty of the secret team. Prouty cites how “[o]n the basis of security [Dulles] would place people in all areas of the Government, and then he would move them up and deeper into their cover jobs until they began to take a very active part in the role of their own cover organizations.”

The global power of the secret team according to Prouty comes from its “vast intragovernmental undercover infrastructure and its direct relationship with great private industries, mutual funds and investment houses, universities, and the news media, including foreign and domestic publishing houses. The Secret Team has very close affiliations with elements of power in more than three-score foreign countries and is able when it chooses to topple governments, to create governments, and to influence governments almost anywhere in the world.”

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