"This ain't no United Nations. This is just United White folks." An opinion offered immediately after the January 17, 1961 assassination of Patrice Lumumba -- prime minister of the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Historian Susan Williams quotes the opinion in WHITE MALICE: THE CIA AND THE COVERT RECOLONIZATION OF AFRICA.
The 2021 book covers many topics as it traces the role of the US government in Africa. Will there ever be reparations for the slavery trade and the wealth generated by the use of slaves? If there is, the next step would be for the US to make reparations to the countries of Africa that they worked so hard to destabilize.
That's the one weak area in Susan Williams' book. She documents many things -- and has an exhaustive and endless supply of sources -- contemporary press accounts, government documents (redacted and unredacted -- one, in fact, she has two copies of and is able to tell what was in the original because one copy released by the US government redacts one section, while the other copy released by the US government, redacts the other part -- putting them together, she has an unredacted copy), a COUNTERPUNCH article (a 2005 article, noted by me to give the publication a shout out), letters from various participants, and interviews.
You can't claim that the author hasn't covered all the basis.
It's a fascinating book and one I highly recommend (in 2023, we are returning to the goal of one book review a week at community sites). It's also available on AMAZON KINDLE for $4.99 right now which is the reason I'm noting it. That's a very good bargain.
President Dwight Eisenhower, a hero to some deluded people, wanted Lumumba murdered. He was, three days before John F. Kennedy was sworn in as president. Did JFK know about the plan to take Lumumba out?
Susan's not sure, the record's not clear. There's a chance he did, there's a chance he didn't. If he did know, there's a chance that he thought, having been elected, he would be able to call it off (that's me, not Susan Williams).
We do know Eisenhower wanted him dead.
The Congo was rich in diamonds and uranium. And if you're a freak for Adlai Ewing Stevenson II (twice failed presidential candidate, among other things), the book's not going to make you happy here because Adlai helped a friend (a rich thug, who partied with Jaqueline Kennedy later on in the 80s) who wanted the diamonds in the Congo.
That's the thing, a lot of hearts will be broken by WHITE MALICE.
Life's not the picture book you were taught it was as a child.
As shocking as the British government's refusal to help Lumumba when he is being pursued by armed 'rebels' and as shocking as the beating he will endure once he is captured, the ear that will be cut off and 'gifted' to one of his political rivals, the way TIME magazine will mock his widow, etc -- as shocking as all that is -- and as brutal as it is -- the bigger shock is that it was carried out by the US and UK government (with help from Belgium) as well as the United Nations -- and it was done in the names of the people of those countries.
It was The Cold War. And there were excuses offered like the Congo -- and other countries in Africa -- might go over to the side of the USSR.
That's not the reason though.
And it wasn't the diamonds and uranium or, today, the cobalt.
Yes, those were wanted and desired.
But the reason for that?
To maintain a standard of life. We are mafia wives in the US. We expect certain things and most of us aren't about to question how they get provided to us.
And this is how it happens. The US and the UK trample over the rights of people in poorer countries. They create enemies -- via the CIA-assets in the western press (and Susan goes into that). This is all about justifying theft and maintaining a standard of life.
Is that why former CIA agent Gloria Steinem can justify her own crimes? It's getting harder and harder for Gloria. Susan Faludi offers an excuse and a white wash for Gloria in BACKLASH. In the book, Betty Friedan is portrayed as demented and desperate to hang on to power. The latter was probably true. And I believed the former for years* because I considered Gloria a friend and she insisted it wasn't true -- she just went to an international conference as a college student and wasn't really aware that it was CIA-linked. And Katha Sarachild and The Redstockings were portrayed as lunatics. (Here for Katha Sarachild's 1975 PACIFICA RADIO interview discussing Gloria and the CIA.)
And I was a fool to believe Gloria.
She worked for the CIA for years. It took Ava and I about ten minutes to find proof online demonstrating how long after college she continued to work for CIA front companies before suddenly becoming a feminist.
For those who need to hear it from her mouth, you can find her on YOUTUBE in videos where she's bragging about her work for the CIA. Such as the one below.
And bragging about the CIA. Now what she did at the conference -- the only CIA event she wants to own up to -- was to report on dissidents who went home suffered because of her reports. That's outrageous enough. But now that we know she worked CIA fronts after college -- and she did -- now that THE NEW YORK TIMES no longer cares to cover up for her. They will, however, laugh at her letters griping about that report and even print one:
In a titillating lead into an otherwise accurate article about why I love New York, John Leland writes that I started my career as “a C.I.A. operative,” got my “break as a Playboy Bunny” and married the father of a movie star.
She really needs to get honest.
And let's be clear, THE NEW YORK TIMES turned on her. She's no longer judged as some one worth protecting. For years, she was. For years, she could count CIA assets in the press and publishing to protect her and to prevent the larger world from knowing what she did. Now? Patrick Iber tells the truth at THE NEW REPUBLIC, Louis Menand at THE NEW YORKER . . .
I bring up Gloria because she is a liar and she was CIA and her defense of it -- after being outed by RAMPARTS -- was to say that she agreed with them and they were the good guys.
This is when they're murdering Lumumba.
They're good guys?
Well, I guess that explains why she spread her legs for Henry Kissinger long after the world knew what a War Criminal he was. Gloria raved to WOMEN'S WEAR DAILY in September of 1971, "Henry's the only interesting person in the whole Nixon Administration and he's not afraid of hostile reporters. I enjoy talking with him. He's the only person on the Nixon team who can talk."
Of the CIA? "They were enlightened, liberal, non-partisan," Gloria insists in the video above.
She chose to climb into bed with the CIA at the time that they were trying to overthrow many leaders (such as Fidel Castro) and when they were plotting to murder others (such a Lumumba).
In 2017, Ann Garrison (at COUNTERPUNCH) examined Gloria's remarks at the ridiculous celebrity 'fauxtest' in DC:
Huh? These assassinations of the 1960s brought on the wars that destroyed Yugoslavia, Iraq, Libya and very nearly Syria? The ongoing 15-year Afghanistan War?
Gloria needs to answer for what she's done.
Will she? Hasn't she got one foot in the grave already and she still can't get honest?
That's the CIA for you. They traffic in lies.
They don't believe in fairness and equality or even democracy. They believe in control.
They should be shattered to the winds.
Yet, some on the left were praising them during the Trump years, hailing them as saviors.
From WHITE MALICE:
Covert action of any sorts, said Franck Church, the Idaho Democrat who chaired the 1975 Senate select committee investigations into the abuses of the CIA, was nothing more than 'a semantic disguise for murder, coercion, blackmail, bribery, the spreading of lies, whatever is deemed useful to bending other countries to our will.'
We drown in a river of denial because we don't want to see the truth. We don't want to grasp that Gloria worked for the CIA for over ten years. We don't want to address what our politicians have done or what the CIA has done.
We want to be mafia wives -- we want to model the fur but we don't think about the blood that it took to put that fur on our backs.
Patrice Lumumba inspired many and could have delivered and inspired democracy across the African continent. But the US government wanted the profits the diamonds and the uranium could bring. So the Lumumba had to be targeted, his country destabilized. It was all about the red ink and the black ink in the ledger. On such economics is US foreign policy really dictated. In the end, Dwight Eisenhower and Salvatore (Sammy the Bull) Gravano aren't all that different.
That's how the US can target foreign leaders and foreign populations. It's how it can target its own people. As WHITE MALICE notes, millions were spent by the CIA to determine how to break people -- the National Health Institute cooperated with those experiments as part of MKUltra in the 1950s and 1960s -- experimenting on American citizens without their knowledge. They also experimented on animals when humans weren't available -- using radar on the brains of monkeys to knock them out, knocking animals out with concussions to see if they could create amnesia that way.
There are no ethics. These people will resort to anything -- it's like the mob -- and they will insist that they are doing it for a better world, a better country. But they do it in secrecy because some part of them knows it is wrong -- it's unethical, it's illegal and it's inhumane.
Susan Williams notes that when asked who killed Patrice Lumumba, Daphne Park declared, "The CIA, of course." She also stated that, as head of the United Kingdom's MI6 in the Congo, she orchestrated the killing. There's no guilt there. Park, now dead, thought she did something amazing and wonderful. And, if you want to be a mafia wife and think that as well, avoid reading Susan Williams' WHITE MALICE.
The following sites updated: