The New Great Game Round-Up: April 27, 2014

Russia's "Fifth Column" Causes Trouble in Georgia, Ukraine Crisis Affects Central Asia & Pipelineistan, Xinjiang's War on Terror Targets Beards

*The Great Game Round-Up brings you the latest newsworthy developments regarding Central Asia and the Caucasus region. We document the struggle for influence, power, hegemony and profits in Central Asia and the Caucasus region between a U.S.-dominated NATO, its GCC proxies, Russia, China and other regional players.

While tensions are mounting in eastern Ukraine after U.S. Vice President Joe Biden had instructed Washington's puppet regime in Kiev to ignore the Geneva agreement and escalate the situation, the European Union sent two of its most notorious warmongers to another front in the new Cold War against Russia. The Foreign Ministers of Germany and France, Frank-Walter Steinmeier and Laurent Fabius, visited Georgia and affirmed plans to speed up the signing of the now infamous EU Association Agreement with Russia's southern neighbor:

France, Germany show EU support for Georgia as Ukraine crisis mounts

France and Germany assured Georgia on Thursday that a deal bringing it closer to the European Union would be sealed within weeks, moving to tighten ties with the ex-Soviet republic as tension mounts between Russia and the West over Ukraine.

"I am sure that by the end of June the agreement will have been signed and that it is an important milestone in the history of Georgian and European relations," German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier said in Tbilisi.

Russia's "Fifth Column" Causes Trouble in Georgia

Georgia and Moldova were supposed to sign the EU pact by the end of this year but in the light of the Ukraine crisis, Brussels wants to seal the deal as soon as possible. When Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych rejected the EU-Ukraine Association Agreement, which has been quite rightly described as a "dangerous NATO military agreement disguised as a customs and economic agreement", Washington and Brussels had to stage a bloody coup in order to get their will. They would prefer less problems in Georgia. Fortunately, the Georgian government is more obedient and does not tolerate any Russian influence in the country:

Domestic Frictions as Georgians Await EU Deal

Amid the recriminations, there are concerns that Russia-Ukraine tensions are affecting Georgia in a different and potentially more alarming manner. A number of pro-Moscow demonstrations have taken place in recent weeks. Participants spoke out against Georgia’s plans to join NATO one day, and denied that Russia was occupying Georgian territory in the shape of Abkhazia and South Ossetia.

The pro-Russia rallies are organised by the Eurasian Institute in Tbilisi and a group called The Earth is Our Home. Many political analysts in Tbilisi are concerned about where the movement has come from and where it is going.

Defence Minister Irakli Alasania told IWPR that the organisations were funded by “those who wish Georgia ill”, but declined to be more specific.

“The defence ministry and our armed forces are very concerned about the absolutely amoral statements made by these civil society representatives who justify the position of Russia, our principal enemy,” he said. “No one will allow a fifth column to appear in Georgia.”

Last month, the Eurasian Institute had already organized the screening of a film about NATO's bombing of Yugoslavia triggering clashes between supporters and opponents of the U.S.-led military alliance in Tbilisi. So the Georgian authorities will most certainly subject the organization to critical scrutiny after the latest demonstrations. But Defense Minister Alasania's fight against "any fifth column" is obviously only limited to pro-Russian activities and does not affect Washington's "democracy promotion": 

U.S-Georgia Democracy Working Group Meets in Tbilisi

A bilateral U.S.-Georgia working group on democracy and governance under the strategic partnership charter between the two countries met on April 25 in Tbilisi to discuss Georgia’s democratic reforms.

Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Democracy, Human Rights and Labor Thomas O. Melia; USAID Assistant Administrator for Europe and Eurasia Paige Alexander and Department of Justice's Regional Director for Eurasia Catherine Newcombe were among the U.S. delegation. During the visit the delegation held series of meetings in Tbilisi with the Georgian leadership, civil society and opposition representatives.

When it comes to subversive activities in other countries, only few can compete with Washington. The Russian authorities have first-hand knowledge of this. After all, Russia is hosting hundreds of nongovernmental organizations funded by the United States and other hostile countries. This week, NGOs in Russia's Republic of Tatarstan showed their true colors by nominating Crimean Tatar leader Mustafa Dzhemilev for the Nobel Peace Prize. If CIA's RFE/RL had not reported the story, nobody would have noticed it. But since Dzhemilev has stated publicly that Crimean Tatars will not recognize "Russia's annexation" of the Crimean peninsula, he is at the moment the darling of Western media, which made a fuss about a travel ban allegedly imposed on the former head of the Crimean Tatar Mejlis. This was of course just propaganda based on a fake document. During the last few days, both the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) and the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO) have voiced their concerns about the information war and Ukraine-style color revolutions. As Vestnik Kavkaza's editor-in-chief Alexei Vlasov recently explained, the Ukraine crisis does not bode well for the ruling elite in Central Asia:

Eurasian security in new reality

“Eurasian supporters of Russia, our partners in the CSTO, the Customs Union feel pressure by the West, primarily the USA, in various directions and by internal forces, representatives of the non-governmental sector oriented at Western grants. The last are main agents of influence, who promote a special view on the situation in Crimea and Ukraine, which contradicts official positions of Astana, Bishkek, Dushanbe.”

Ukraine Crisis Affects Central Asia, Pipelineistan

A few days ago, CSTO chief Nikolai Bordyuzha accused NATO of blackmailing all CSTO member states and announced the suspension of contacts between the two military alliances. Due to Washington's opposition, there had not been any NATO-CSTO cooperation anyway. According to Bordyuzha, the CSTO will now strengthen its ties with the SCO and cooperate more closely with China and Iran in the fight against drug trafficking. Meanwhile, two CSTO member states along with Iran and Turkmenistan convinced U.S. proxy Azerbaijan to agree on prohibiting the military presence of any other country on the Caspian Sea:

Caspian sea closed for US military

A convention on the legal status of the Caspian Sea will keep the sea free from any military facilities except of either Kazakhstan, Russia, Turkmenistan, Iran or Azerbaijan, according to nur.kz citing Kazakhstan's KTK Channel.

The accord was reached between foreign ministers of the five Caspian states at talks held in Moscow.

Washington will not be happy to hear that the littoral states of the Caspian Sea eventually came up with an unanimous decision on something. But the Ukraine crisis set a lot of things in motion. Kazakhstan's Foreign Ministry is currently trying to verify media reports about the presence of Kazakh citizens among the pro-Russian protesters in eastern Ukraine and the Kazakh government wants to prevent any separatist activities at home:

As Ukraine Splinters, Kazakhstan Mulls Criminalizing Calls for Separatism

As leaders across the former Soviet Union watch another predominantly Russian-speaking region of Ukraine demand independence this week, Astana is mulling legislation that would jail anyone who calls for separatism in Kazakhstan.

Under a proposed amendment to the criminal code, Kazakhstanis could get 10 years in prison for making "illegal and unconstitutional calls for changes to the territorial integrity of the Republic of Kazakhstan,” Arman Ayaganov of Kazakhstan's Prosecutor General's office told journalists April 8, Tengrinews
reports.

Furthermore, Kazakhstan is worried about the third packet of sanctions against Russia and is already looking for alternative routes to export its oil in case the U.S. and the EU overplay their hand. In light of the ongoing problems at Kazakhstan's largest oil field, the Kazakh authorities are very careful when it comes to their black gold. At the beginning of this year, President Nazarbayev had prematurely boasted that there will some "serious" output from Kashagan in 2014 but after weeks of review, the operators of the giant oil field have now confirmed earlier reports about the unavoidable necessity to replace damaged pipelines:

Kazakhstan’s largest oilfield will be shut down for at least two years

In another crisis at a giant but star-crossed oilfield, Kazakhstan’s Kashagan will be shut for at least two years while specialty pipelines are made to resist the unforeseen impact of toxic gas, according to a source close to the project.

In recent weeks, word has
dribbled out that Kashagan—one of the largest supergiant oil finds of the last half-century—may lie dormant through the summer (paywall) and perhaps longer. But this is the first concrete report that the gravity of the problem means that Kashagan will produce no oil through at least 2016 and possibly 2017.

The costly new lines—probably with a nickel alloy—will replace two 55-mile pipelines, one for oil, one for gas. Already, $50 billion has been spent, and the rework means a delay in billions of dollars in cashflow expected by Kazakhstan itself and major oil companies including ExxonMobil, Shell, Eni, and France’s Total. Kashagan contains an estimated 13 billion barrels of recoverable oil reserves.

While Astana is desperately trying to compensate for Kashagan's missing output by boosting oil production at other oil fields, some Indian officials and executives are probably enjoying the drama. Kazakhstan's decision to reject the bid of India's Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC) for a stake in the Kashagan project in favor of a Chinese competitor did not go down well in India. But things have changed in the past year. The Kazakh government, concerned about the growing Chinese influence, is now inviting Indian firms to participate in upcoming projects and joint ventures in order to lessen Kazakhstan's dependence on China. Given India's high demand for energy, Indian firms can hardly refuse this offer. Moreover, ONGC has already confirmed its interest in a major pipeline project, which has been on the drawing boards for nearly a decade and might be implemented due to the new Cold War: 

Russia, India Planning $30 Billion Oil Pipeline Through Xinjiang

Russia is changing its energy export policy vector as strong demand for hydrocarbons in both in China and in India continues to grow. The recent unease in both the U.S. and Europe over Russian President Vladimir Putin’s March 17 annexation of Crimea has only added to Moscow’s efforts to diversify its markets beyond Europe.

Now Russia and India
are planning to construct a $30 billion oil pipeline through China’s restive Xinjiang province. If successful, the pipeline will be the most expensive in the world.

The pipeline also has political support in China. China’s Center for Strategic Studies in Energy Director Xia Yishan recently
said, “The project is beneficial for both India and China, as it would allow China to become an oil transit in addition to its ‘status’ of recipient of the Russian oil.”

Xinjiang's War on Terror Targets Beards

This ambitious project will strengthen India's intention to become a member of the China-led SCO, which is currently working to improve the legal framework regarding adoption of new members to the organization. Xinjiang plays an increasingly important role in Pipelineistan and Beijing wants to turn the autonomous region into China's onshore energy base. Therefore Xinjiang's stability is of the utmost importance to the Chinese authorities, as Public Security Minister Guo Shengkun stressed once again this week. However, sometimes China's War on Terror produces strange effects:

Spot Beard, Get Paid: China Offers Money for Informants in Xinjiang

Authorities in northwest China are offering rewards for anyone who informs on their neighbors for having too much facial hair.

Officials in Shaya county, Xinjiang, have listed beards among the “potential hazards to society” residents should look out for and report to the government as part of a new campaign.

According to the state-run Global Times, the campaign is offering
rewards ranging from 50 yuan to up to 50,000 yuan for “a wide range of intelligence from those wearing beards to spreading information to topple the authorities.” Rewards will also be on offer for tipoffs on news of foreigners traveling through the county, as well as people conducting “illegal religious activities.”

Faced with Washington's plan to establish East Turkestan on Chinese territory, the Chinese authorities are primarily concerned with separatist and illegal religious activities in the autonomous region. According to CIA's Radio Free Asia, a recent police raid on a local mosque resulted in the dismissal of the mosque's imam and two people were detained for listening to "illegal religious audio materials". Furthermore, Xinjiang's law enforcers take the frequent campaigns against guns and explosives very seriously:

Xinjiang police seize 400 imitation guns, 230,000 bullets

Police authorities in Urumqi, capital of northwest China's Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region, have seized more than 400 imitation guns and 230,000 bullets.

Tang Liang, a spokesman with the Sayibak district bureau of public security in Urumqi, on Tuesday revealed the seizure was made in a bust after a campaign against guns and explosives was launched on April 10.


Police seized 46 replica guns and 230,000 bullets from a store at a wholesale market for toys and then seized more than 350 guns from the store's warehouse.

In response to the terrorist attack in Kunming, security measures have been tightened once more. For example, mainland cities including Shanghai increased the number of armed police officers on patrol in the wake of the massacre. Terrorist attacks offer the perfect pretext for the Chinese government to turn the country into a full-fledged police state with support from the majority of the population. A survey of Mainland China civilians shows that most people know that Xinjiang's terror problem is fueled from abroad, which is most likely one of the main reasons for the strong support of China's War on Terror [emphasis mine]: 

How Chinese Think About Terrorism

The results of our data show that 66 percent of respondents do not agree with the statement that “Poverty is the source of Xinjiang terrorist violent attack.” More than 85 percent think foreign separatist forces and religious extremist forces are the main sources of Xinjiang terrorism. In addition, 96 percent of respondents think the government should step up its fight against terrorism, and 69 percent think that the current ethnic policies need to be modified.

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Christoph Germann- BFP Contributing Author & Analyst
Christoph Germann is an independent analyst and researcher based in Germany, where he is currently studying political science. His work focuses on the New Great Game in Central Asia and the Caucasus region. You can visit his website here

Weekly Round Up for October 17

The ‘Obvious’ Silence of the Times, China’s Pipelineistan War, Mujahedin’s Penetration of Tajikistan

The other day our friend Metem brought to my attention a story that had made it to the Project Censored list, ‘US Funds & Supports Taliban.’ Here are two excerpts from the introduction which are related to our coverage of the mysterious helicopter activities in northern Afghanistan.

NYT1017In a continuous flow of money, American tax dollars end up paying members of the Taliban and funding a volatile environment in Afghanistan. Private contractors pay insurgents with the hope of attaining the very safety they are contracted to provide. Concurrently, US soldiers pay at checkpoints run by suspected insurgents in order to get safe passage. In some cases, Afghan companies run by former Taliban members, like President Hamid Karzai’s cousin, are protecting the passage of American soldiers. The funding of the insurgents, along with rumors of American helicopters ferrying Taliban members in Afghanistan, has led to widespread distrust of American forces. In the meantime, the US taxpayer’s dollar continues to fund insurgents to protect American troops so they can fight insurgents.

Ahmad Rate Popal is a grand example of how those who controlled Afghanistan under Taliban rule are still controlling Afghanistan today and being paid by US tax dollars. Popal, who served as interpreter at one of the ruling Taliban’s last press conferences, is greatly increasing his wealth through the US war in Afghanistan. In 1988, he was charged with conspiring to import heroin into the United States. He was released from prison in 1997. Popal’s cousin is Afghanistan’s President Karzai. Popal and his brother Rashid (who pleaded guilty in 1996 to a separate heroin charge) control the Watan Group in Afghanistan, which is a consortium engaged in many different fields of business. One of Watan’s enterprises is to protect convoys of Afghan trucks heading from Kabul to Kandahar, carrying American supplies. Popal is one example of the virtual carnival of improbable characters and shady connections, with former CIA officials and ex-military officers in Afghanistan joining hands with former Taliban members and mujahideen to collect US government funds in the name of the war effort.

Okay, that’s what the article is about but it isn’t what got my attention. Here is what I’m getting at:

An example of these contracts are those granted to the NCL Holdings in Afghanistan run by Hamed Wardak, the young American son of Afghanistan’s current defense minister, General Abdul Rahim Wardak. NCL is a small firm that was awarded a US military logistics contract worth hundreds of millions of dollars. Despite the fact that the firm only operates in Afghanistan, Wardak incorporated NCL in the United States early in 2007, due to his connections there.

On NCL’s advisory board is Milton Bearden, a well-known former CIA officer who in 2009 was introduced by Senator John Kerry as “a legendary former CIA case officer and a clearheaded thinker and writer.” Bearden is an incredible asset to a small defense contracting firm. Wardak was able to get a contract for Host Nation Trucking despite having no apparent trucking experience. The contract is aimed at handling the bulk of US trucking in Afghanistan, bringing supplies to bases and remote outposts throughout Afghanistan. At first the contract was small, but very quickly it expanded by 600 percent, making it a gargantuan contract worth $360 million. NCL had struck pure contracting gold. These profits, which only go to a very select and well-connected portion of the Afghan people, build a large amount of distrust from Afghan citizens toward American troops and those connected to them.

And, this is the part where Project Censored for whatever reason didn’t go one step further:

Since our initial search of corporate media coverage on this issue in February 2010, finding zero coverage at that time, both the New York Times and the Washington Post have covered part of the story on their front pages. Both mentioned President Hamid Karzai’s cousin, and both acknowledged that in all likelihood money is making its way to the Taliban. Neither paper mentioned the US connection, Milton Bearden. The Washington Post covered the story on March 29, 2010, and mentioned the Nation magazine article. The New York Times story came out on June 6, 2010, acknowledging the corruption, but included the news that President Obama was addressing the issue with President Karzai. That the two stories came out two months apart, and that the US links are left out, led to the decision at Project Censored to keep this important story in the top censored stories list for the year.

Way back when, I wrote a couple of pieces on a few of these personalities that have been totally, and intentionally, overlooked by the mainstream media and  the like. Do you remember our piece on General Wardak, his son Hamed Wardak, ex CIA operative with a fairly dubious history, and an ex- congressman in the ‘laundering’ business? Let me refresh your memory:

RittAs the bodies in Afghanistan are piling up and the number of wounded keeps escalating, while Washington is buzzing with the long-known but selectively-buried corrupt and criminal past and present of our installed government officials there, some are cashing in on both sides, and some are paving the way to the next pot(s) of gold reserved for carpetbaggers and war-profiteers in every war or conflict. In this game there always are a few known names and faces who are publicized and who draw the spotlight, and there are those who enjoy operating and profiting quietly without drawing deserved attention and needed scrutiny. That’s how Washington’s war and conflict machine works, and that’s’ the way our foreign policy decisions are influenced and made. I am going to introduce one such character as an introduction to my upcoming longer story on this same topic. Ladies and gentlemen please meet our Neocon Ex Congressman, Don Ritter, and be informed of his new lucrative ‘Laundering Business’ in Afghanistan.

Let’s go back to Mr. Ritter’s entrepreneurial ventures in Afghanistan. His self aggrandizing website has this to say:

“Don is the U.S. investor and Chairman of the U.S. – Afghan company that built and operates the most modern laundry and dry cleaning plant in the region to serve the population of Kabul and execute military and government contracts. He is also currently engaged in building a mountain lodge tourism industry in the Panjshir Valley, a mini-mill for steel products for the Afghan construction boom in Herat, a business development services company in Kabul and an Afghan-American prime contractor to compete for large construction contracts.”

For the real juice on Mr. Ritter’s business dealings, my highly informed sources point me to Afghanistan’s current Defense Minister Abdul Rahim Wardak. The Afghan diaspora in DC name Wardak as one of the key figures in the highly lucrative Poppy & heroin market; albeit in hushed voices. I can’t fathom the feasibility and profitability of a laundry and dry-cleaning business in Afghanistan owned and operated by a Neocon former congressman. What is Mr. Ritter ‘laundering?’

Please do me a favor and read the brief piece here

After that piece I wrote a much longer related piece (okay, much much longer; the usual ‘Sibel length’!) which introduced you further to General Wardak, his son-Hamed Wardak, and Ex CIA operative, Milton Bearden. Again, a few excerpts follow:

BeardOnce upon a time there was man named Milton Bearden, commonly referred to as Milt. He spent his early years in the state of Washington where his father worked on the Manhattan Project. After a few years with the US Air Force he joined the CIA in 1964.

Milt was CIA’s chosen man for their operations in Pakistan and Afghanistan. In fact, from 1986 to 1989, when our country was supporting the Mujahideen, he was one of their main men on the ground, working with this coalition of the Taliban, the Saudis and their main man Bin Laden, and the Pakistani ISI. The Director of the CIA, William Casey, was the one who appointed Milt Bearden for this task. Here is Milt’s own words describing his importance in a not very unusual ex-CIA conceited manner:

Milt’s cushy CIA retirement and all those glowing medals must not have been enough, for he then engaged in frenzied marketing and self promotion to get himself entrenched in almost all major US networks and newspapers as a consultant, writer, advisor, and of course as a trusted source - a CIA source to provide quotes and information for scripts at the snap of a finger. He coauthored a book with New York Times reporter James Risen called The Main Enemy. Whether this kind of business arrangement, where a commonly used source partners up with a reporter, presents a conflict of interest or even could be called incestuous, is everyone else’s call.

Most interestingly Mr. Bearden seemed to have lured in the American mainstream media by presenting himself as an outspoken critique of the Bush White House Intelligence policies after the September 11 terrorists’ attack. He suddenly became a major spokesperson on ‘how we created this monster called Osama Bin Laden,’ and the nasty radical Taliban. And the mainstream media couldn’t get enough of him. Ironically, he happened to be the man after William Casey and Neocons’ Jeane Kirkpatrick’s own hearts in creating the Bin Laden monster, bolstering the radical Taliban brand of Islamism in Afghanistan and Pakistan, and kosherizing all dirty deeds as means to justify the end(s). He didn’t get those medals or promotions for nothing!

Our General Wardak disappeared from the Afghan scene at the beginning of the civil war in the 1990s. He brought his family to the United States where he settled comfortably with enough wealth from undetermined sources, and he enrolled his son, Hamed, in Georgetown University.

The Karzai brothers took a great interest in Wardak Junior, and he enjoyed the benefits of the Karzais’ flashy and high-flying friends. After the September 11 Terror Attacks, the Karzais made Hamed the Vice President of the Afghan-American Chamber of Commerce, which was founded by Mahmood Karzai. As I mentioned briefly in my piece, our Neocon Ex-Congressman Don Ritter happens to be the co-founder of this organization. Hamed was also appointed to an advisor’s post with President Karzai’s first Finance Minister, Ashraf Ghani. No small accomplishment for the barely 30 year old Hamed!

Hamed Wardak’s most productive venture in tapping into the US Defense Sector Pot(s) of Gold began with joining a Washington DC contracting firm, Technologists Inc., founded by Aziz Azimi, who happened to be a very close buddy of Qayum Karzai. Here is a further detail on this by e-Ariana:

“Hamed Wardak’s new alliances proved extraordinarily advantageous as George W. Bush launched his “war on terror,” particularly with Khalilzad and Strmecki enjoying direct access to Vice-President Dick Cheney’s office.”

Do you want to check out the kind of contracts, the kind of millions, we are talking about with Technologists Inc.? Here is one for you:

Technologists, Inc., Rosslyn, Va., was awarded on Jan. 5, 2009, a $96,090,519 firm fixed price contract for the construction of an Afghanistan National Police National Training Center. Work will be performed in Maydan Wardak, Afghanistan, and is expected to be completed by Mar. 31, 2011. Contract funds will not expire at the end of the current fiscal year. Web bids were solicited on Oct. 1, 2008, and 13 bids were received. U.S. Army Engineer District, Afghanistan, is the contracting activity (W917PM-09-C-0005).

That’s right. Just one of these contracts is worth nearly $100 million for connected Afghan carpetbaggers cashing in on wars suffered by ordinary American tax payers and US soldiers.

Here is one of our characters who hasn’t made an appearance for several pages: Milt Bearden, the EX-CIA Rambo in Afghanistan in the 80s, the US media darling on Osama Bin Laden, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Taliban…you name it, the shrewd self promoter with books and movies:

Milt Bearden must have been pretty familiar with our General Wardak since he was on the ground in Afghanistan serving his masters at the CIA and the Whitehouse, including the great advocator of ‘use any means,’ our Godmother of Neocons, Jeane Kirkpatrick. Operation Cyclone must certainly have brought him in contact with involved Taliban Generals, including our General, Osama Bin Laden, and other key ISI operators, and his dealings must certainly have included the major heroin operations tapped into to further fund these ‘freedom fighters.’ In fact, our Spook dealt extensively with Hekmatyar, who is considered one of the biggest, if not the biggest, Heroin Operator in Afghanistan - which supplies 90% of the world’s Heroin:

One U.S. official who had considerable dealings with Mr. Hekmatyar was Milt Bearden, who during the Soviet occupation ran the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency's covert program in Afghanistan. He says Mr. Hekmatyar struck him as "quirky and paranoid."

Thus, it shouldn’t come as any surprise that our Ex-Spook took an interest in our General’s son, and translated this interest into a close business partnership when our young and chubby Hamed Wardak got closer and closer to big Pots of Gold in Washington DC and his father made it to the Defense Minister position in Afghanistan.

After Hamed Wardak left Technologists Inc. to go further in tapping the US Defense Contractor Gold Pots, and to set up various other front businesses in Afghanistan, many of which happen to be in security sectors, he formed a new front organization, Campaign for a US-Afghan Partnership. Guess who he appointed as the top man for the Board of this ambigious organization? That’s right, none other than our ex-spook, media supplier, Milton Bearden. Check out his glowing background listed on Hamed Wardak’s organization’s website: click here. What exactly this organization does, no one really knows, which should go as another credit to our Mr. Bearden’s CIA background in keeping things convoluted and secretive.

Rumors from the Ex-CIA community in the DC area point to another highly lucrative Wardak company paid by US tax payers, NCL, in Kabul, and hint that their buddy Milt may have been playing a major role there. Because of Mr. Bearden’s cozy relationships no one in the media has been looking for these deeper engagements and lucrative partnerships between him and Hamed Wardak.

You can read the entire piece on Bearden-Wardak and more here. Come on Project Censored! Why not talk about this ex spook’s intimate relationship with the New York Times?! Not only has he been their revered source, but he is the partner of their top reporter. How could James Risen partner up with him (financially, in the publicity arena…), and still he and others use Bearden as their valued source and in many cases as their only source?! As for The Washington Post: this would fall within the coverage area of our infamous Walter Pincus. Yes, I’m talking about the long ago exposed Pincus from Operation Mockingbird, and the father of Pincus Junior who happens to be an attorney for the infamous Black Water (aka XE and several other nicknames).

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Operation Tajikistan

OpTajLast week I wrote a piece on the latest developments in Central Asia and the Caucasus which briefly covered the  Mysterious Helicopter Activities in Northern Afghanistan. Using a tad of common sense we checked out the strategically important neighbors in this region where these officially denied (vehemently, that is) mysterious activities took place, and one of the three countries of interest was Tajikistan. Here are a few related articles dealing with our topic and Tajikistan.

Also last week Asia Times ran the following convoluted piece on Tajikistan. The piece is filled with speculations, interpretations, and even wild guesses:

Tajikistan struggles to quell militants

As Tajik government forces continue a security sweep to crush armed groups in the eastern mountains after losing 25 soldiers in an ambush, analysts are divided on the reasons for this resurgence in militant activity.

Enquiries by the Institute for War and Peace Reporting (IWPR) indicate that the resistance is coming from local paramilitary forces led by guerrilla leaders from Tajikistan's 1992-97 civil war.

Claims by the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan, IMU, a militant group allied with the Taliban, that it was behind the attack are probably not entirely accurate but may contain a grain of truth, as the IMU has contacts with the Tajik groups and may have sent emissaries to encourage them to rise up.

And here is another opinion: [Read more...]