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Reporters Without Borders
Its Secret Deal with Otto Reich to Wreck Cuba's Economy

Reporters Without Borders Unmasked

When Robert Menard founded Reporters Without Borders twenty years ago, he gave his group a name which evokes another French organization respected worldwide for its humanitarian work and which maintains a strict neutrality in political conflicts * Doctors Without Borders. But RSF (French acronym) has been anything but nonpartisan and objective in its approach to Latin America and to Cuba in particular.
From the beginning, RSF has made Cuba its No. 1 target. Allegedly founded to advocate freedom of the press around the world and to help journalists under attack, the organization has called Cuba "the world's biggest prison for journalists." It even gives the country a lower ranking on its press freedom index than countries where journalists routinely have been killed, such as Colombia, Peru and Mexico. RSF has waged campaigns aimed at discouraging Europeans from vacationing in Cuba and the European Union from doing business there * its only campaigns worldwide intended to damage a country's economy.
The above is not a matter of chance because it turns out that RSF is on the payroll of the U.S. State Department and has close ties to Helms-Burton-funded Cuban exile groups.
As a majority of members of Congress work toward normalizing trade and travel with Cuba, the extremist anti-Castro groups that have dictated U.S. Cuba policy for 40 years continue working tirelessly to maintain an economic stranglehold on the island. Their support for RSF is part of this overall strategy.
Havana-based journalist Jean-Guy Allard wrote a book about RSF's leader (El expediente Robert Ménard: Por qué Reporteros sin Fronteras se ensaña con Cuba, Quebec: Lanctôt, 2005) which lays out the pieces of the puzzle regarding Menard's activities, associations and sources of funding in an attempt to explain what he calls Menard's "obsession" with Cuba. On April 27 this year the pieces began to come together: Thierry Meyssan, president of the Paris daily, Red Voltaire, published an article in which he claimed Menard had negotiated a contract with Otto Reich and the Center for a Free Cuba (CFC) in 2001. Reich was a trustee of the center, which receives the bulk of its funding from the U.S. Agency for International Development. The contract, according to Meyssan, was signed in 2002 around the time Reich was appointed Special Envoy to the Western Hemisphere for the Secretary of State. The initial payment for RSF's services was approximately 24,970 euros in 2002 ($25,000), which went up to 59,201 euros in 2003 ($50,000).
Lucie Morillon, RSF's Washington representative, confirmed in an interview on April 29 that they are indeed receiving payments from the Center for a Free Cuba, and that the contract with Reich requires them to inform Europeans about the repression against journalists in Cuba and to support the families of journalists in prison. Morillon also said they received $50,000 from the CFC in 2004 and that this amount was consistent from year to year. But she denied that the anti-Cuba declarations on radio and television, full-page ads in Parisian dailies, posters, leafletting at airports and an April 2003 occupation of the Cuban tourism office in Paris were aimed at discouraging tourism to the island.
RSF's emphasis on tourism is the key to understanding it's role. After the 1989 fall of the Soviet Union, Eastern bloc support for Cuba's economy soon came to a halt and what Cubans call the "special period" began. Almost all of Cuba's sugar harvest had been sold to the communist bloc throughout the Cold War era and in return the island imported two-thirds of its food supply, nearly all its oil and 80 percent of its machinery and spare parts from the same sources. Suddenly 85 percent of Cuba's foreign trade vanished. Deprived of petroleum, Cuban industries and transportation ground to a halt. For the first time in many years malnutrition on the island began to appear as rations were reduced to little more than rice and beans.
Washington saw the withdrawal of Soviet subsidies in 1989 and subsequent natural disasters that destroyed crops on the island as a chance to deal a deathblow to the Castro regime. The Miami extreme right, led by the Cuban American National Foundation (CANF), began to draw up plans to work with sympathetic government agencies toward that end. "Nothing nor no one will make us falter. We do not wish it, but if blood has to flow, it will flow," wrote CANF chair Jorge Mas Canosa (Hernando Calvo Ospina, Bacardi: The Hidden War, London: Pluto Press, 2002).
But Cuba disappointed the plotters by surviving. A centerpiece of the island's economic recovery was the government's decision in 1992 to develop the tourism industry, which has gone a long way to replace the desperately needed foreign exchange the country had lost. Consequently, it came as no surprise that those wishing to see Cuba starve would want to damage its tourism-based economy through every conceivable form of sabotage. On the extreme end, Miami terrorists began to infiltrate the island to attack hotels and other tourist targets. Terrorist Luis Posada Carriles, who recently sought asylum in the U.S., organized a string of bombings of hotels in 1997 in which an Italian tourist died. Not only did Posada admit this to the New York Times in 1998, but he acknowledged that the leaders of CANF had bankrolled his operations and that Mas Canosa was personally in charge of overseeing the flow of funds and logistical support to carry out the operations. Terrorist Orlando Bosch is also suspected of playing a major role in these attacks.
Another project for bringing about the downfall of Cuba's revolution was the 1996 Helms-Burton Act. Title IV allows the U.S. to impose sanctions against foreign investors in Cuba whose investments allegedly involve properties expropriated from people who are now U.S. nationals. This law, which was intended to force foreign companies and countries to refrain from doing business with Cuba, was written by leaders of the CANF, Bacardi lawyers and Otto Reich. Helms-Burton also provided additional funding to support Cuban dissidents with the intent of destabilizing the government * an aspect of great interest to exile groups. Organizations outside Cuba would be in charge of these funds, and this has developed into a lucrative business for them. USAID alone has distributed more than $34 million in funds related to Cuba since 1996, including its support of Otto Reich's CFC.
In an interview with Colombian journalist Hernando Calvo Ospina (Calvo and Declercq, The Cuban Exile Movement, Melbourne: Ocean Press, 2000), Menard said his group had been supporting dissidents in Cuba since September 1995 and has always considered Cuba "the priority in Latin America." Coincidentally or not, the Helms-Burton Act was already making its way through Congress in January 1995. After Clinton signed the bill into law in 1996, he sent a special ambassador to Europe to meet with NGOs whose work involved Cuba to propose they support the dissident movement. RSF attended one such meeting in Paris in late 1996. RSF was also represented at a meeting called by Pax Christi Netherlands at the Hague to create a pressure group against the Cuban government and support the dissident movement, according to Calvo.
In September 1998 Menard traveled to Havana to recruit people to write stories for RSF to publish. He later told Calvo in his interview, "we give $50 a month each to around twenty journalists so they can survive and stay in the country." But Menard's first representative in Cuba, veteran journalist Nestor Baguer, disputed that description of the relationship in interviews he gave to Granma after he revealed that he had been working for state security while posing as a dissident. Baguer maintained that RSF would only pay for articles turned in, and that they had to attack the Cuban government. He did not consider most of the so-called independent journalists to be either independent or journalists; few had received any formal training and he was forced to severely edit their copy * something he called a "terrible penance."
Baguer recalled the first conversation he had with the RSF head in the back of a rental car: "What he wanted was for it to come straight from here. It seems before he was getting fed from Miami. But he wanted to have his Cuban source so it would be more credible." Noting the small amounts Cubans were paid for their articles, Baguer speculated Menard was doing a "great business" (Allard).
In May 2004 the State Department issued a report to the president by the Commission for Assistance to a Free Cuba. The report recommends $41 million in funding to promote Cuban "civil society" and specifically targets Cuban tourism. In Chapter I, "Hastening Cuba's Transition," part V, headed, "Deny Revenues to the Castro Regime," there is a subheading, "Undermine Regime-sustaining Tourism," which says, "Support efforts by NGOs in selected third countries to highlight human rights abuses in Cuba, as part of a broader effort to discourage tourist travel. This could be modeled after past initiatives, especially those by European NGOs, to boycott tourism to countries where there were broad human rights concerns."
It does not take much to figure out which "European NGOs" have been boycotting tourism to Cuba. RSF is mentioned by name in the report in reference to its support for a jailed journalist whose writings it had published.
RSF's patron at the CFC, Otto Reich, has a long history as a U.S. hit-man in Latin America. This includes helping to spring Orlando Bosch from prison in Venezuela while Reich was U.S. ambassador to that country under President Bush Sr. Bosch was in prison for blowing up a Cuban civilian passenger airplane, killing 73. His accomplice, Luis Posada Carriles, had already bribed his way out in 1985 and was working for the CIA in El Salvador, supplying the Contras from the Ilopango air base. Otto Reich was a major figure in the Iran-Contra scandal. Under the current Bush administration, Reich helped coordinate repeated attempts to oust Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez. He was transferred to the NSC in November 2002, and while there he oversaw the February 2004 coup against Haitian President Jean-Bertrand Aristide * an event in which RSF enthusiastically participated with a smear campaign against the Haitian leader.
Although Reporters without Borders' attacks on Castro, Chavez and Aristide are perfectly alligned with the State Department's policies, and though she admitted RSF was receiving money from Reich, Morillon denied that the governmant funding the group receives in any way affects its activities. She pointed out that RSF's $50,000 payments from the CFC and a January grant of $40,000 from the National Endowment for Democracy only constitute a fraction of the organization's budget. This is true, but Menard has other rich rightist friends in Europe and the U.S., including CFC director Manuel Cutillas, head of Bacardi. CFC's executive director is Frank Calzon, another former director of CANF.
According to a January 20, 2004 article in El Nuevo Herald ("Reporters Without Borders Announces Campaign to Democratize Cuba"), Menard visited Miami that week and received a hero's welcome. He was lionized in the press and honored by exile leaders at a dinner at Casa Bacardi. He met with the Cuban Liberty Council (a split-off from the CANF), the editors of The Miami Herald and Mayor Manny Diaz. Menard was also a guest on a Radio Mambí program hosted by government-funded exile leader Nancy Pérez Crespo, director of Nueva Prensa, a website which posts articles phoned in by Cuban dissidents. In the media he announced that RSF would be holding a meeting on March 18 with European political leaders in Brussels, headquarters of the European Union, to promote democratization in Cuba.
"In Brussels we want to propose elementary measures which can be applied to Cuba as a country that violates human rights," Menard said. "Weren't the European bank accounts of terrorists frozen? Why can't that be done in the case of Cuba?" Menard was on a roll. He said the Brussels event would be just the beginning of new campaigns carried out by RSF in the European media to denounce repression in Cuba. Allard alleges Frank Calzon was also present at the meeting in Brussels, but the executive director refused to comment when he was reached by phone at the CFC.
So loyal is Robert Menard to his patrons at the State Department that he wrote an open letter to the European Commissioner for Development, Louis Michel, on the eve of the diplomat's visit to Cuba this March ( The European Union had decided to adopt a more constructive position with respect to Cuba, suspending economic sanctions that were imposed in June 2003 at the urging of Bush ally, former Spanish President Jose Maria Asnar. The State Department's Richard Boucher condemned the decision to suspend sanctions on Cuba, as long as "objectives haven't been reached," and in his letter to Michel, Menard likewise urged the European Union to keep the pressure on Cuba.
In addition to its other sources of funding, RSF receives free publicity from Saatchi and Saatchi, the third pillar of the world's fourth-largest marketing and public relations conglomerate, Publicis Groupe. Publicis enjoys a near-monopoly on French advertising and as a result, slick RSF propaganda is featured at no cost to the organization in Parisian dailies and supermarkets. It also enjoys free printing of the books it sells by Vivendi Universal Publishing. All of these services have to be factored into RSF's budget. Although the reason for Publicis Groupe's astounding generosity is not known, it is worth noting that a major Publicis client is Bacardi, whose 2001 advertising budget was just under $50 million.
Diana Barahona is a freelance journalists and a member of the Northern California Media Guild. She has been an election observer in Venezuela and El Salvador and written other articles on RSF for the Guild Reporter ( She can be reached at

International Republican Institute Grants Uncovered

Reporters Without Borders and Washington's Coups

British press baron Lord Northcliff said, "News is something that someone, somewhere wants to keep secret, everything else is advertising." If this is true, then U.S. government funding of Reporters Without Borders must be news, because the organization and its friends in Washington have gone to extraordinary lengths to cover it up. In spite of 14 months of stonewalling by the National Endowment for Democracy over a Freedom of Information Act request and a flat denial from RSF executive director Lucie Morillon, the NED has revealed that Reporters Without Borders received grants over at least three years from the International Republican Institute.
The NED still refuses to provide the requested documents or even reveal the grant amounts, but they are identified by these numbers: IRI 2002-022/7270, IRI 2003-027/7470 and IRI 2004-035/7473. Investigative reporter Jeremy Bigwood asked Morillon on April 25 if her group was getting any money from the I.R.I., and she denied it, but the existence of the grants was confirmed by NED assistant to the president, Patrick Thomas.
The discovery of the grants reveals a major deception by the group, which for years denied it was getting any Washington dollars until some relatively small grants from the NED and the Center for a Free Cuba were revealed (see Counterpunch: "Reporters Without Borders Unmasked"). When asked to account for its large income RSF has claimed the money came from the sale of books of photographs. But researcher Salim Lamrani has pointed out the improbability of this claim. Even taking into account that the books are published for free, it would have had to sell 170 200 books in 2004 and 188 400 books in 2005 to earn the more than $2 million the organization claims to make each year * 516 books per day in 2005. The money clearly had to come from other sources, as it turns out it did.
The I.R.I., an arm of the Republican Party, specializes in meddling in elections in foreign countries, as a look at NED annual reports and the I.R.I. website shows. It is one of the four core grantees of the NED, the organization founded by Congress under the Reagan administration in 1983 to replace the CIA's civil society covert action programs, which had been devastated by exposure by the Church committee in the mid-1970s (Ignatius, 1991). The other three pillars of the NED are the National Democratic Institute (the Democratic Party), the Solidarity Center (AFL-CIO) and the Center for International Private Enterprise (U.S. Chamber of Commerce). But of all the groups the I.R.I. is closest to the Bush administration, according to a recent piece in The New York Times exposing its role in the overthrow of Haitian president Jean-Bertrand Aristide:
"President Bush picked its president, Lorne W. Craner, to run his administration's democracy-building efforts. The institute, which works in more than 60 countries, has seen its federal financing nearly triple in three years, from $26 million in 2003 to $75 million in 2005. Last spring, at an I.R.I. fund-raiser, Mr. Bush called democracy-building 'a growth industry.'" (Bogdanich and Nordberg, 2006)
Funding from the I.R.I. presents a major problem for RSF's credibility as a "press freedom" organization because the group manufactured propaganda against the popular democratic governments of Venezuela and Haiti at the same time that its patron, the I.R.I., was deeply involved in efforts to overthrow them. The I.R.I. funded the Venezuelan opposition to President Hugo Chavez (Barry, 2005) and actively organized Haitian opposition to Aristide in conjunction with the CIA (Bogdanich and Nordberg, 2006).
The man who links RSF to these activities is Otto Reich, who worked on the coups first as assistant secretary of state for Latin American affairs, and, after Nov. 2002, as a special envoy to Latin America on the National Security Council. Besides being a trustee of the government-funded Center for a Free Cuba, which gives RSF $50,000 a year, Reich has worked since the early 1980's with the I.R.I.'s senior vice president, Georges Fauriol, another member of the Center for a Free Cuba. But it is Reich's experience in propaganda that is especially relevant. In the 1980's he was caught up in investigations into the Reagan administration's illegal war on the Sandinistas. The comptroller general determined in 1987 that Reich's Office of Public Diplomacy had "engaged in prohibited covert propaganda activities." (Bogdanich and Nordberg, 2006). In early 2002, once George Bush had given him a recess appointment to the State Department, "Reich was soon tasked to orchestrate a massive international media defamation campaign against Chávez that has continued until this day" (Conkling and Goble, 2004).
Did Reich introduce RSF to the I.R.I. grants and coach the group in its propaganda efforts against Aristide, Chavez and Cuba? A look at the group's methods indicates this may be the case; the propaganda against Aristide, a former priest, was as crude as any of Reich's trademark slanders of Latin American leaders. RSF branded the Haitian president a "predator of press freedom" after linking him, without any evidence whatsoever, to the murders of journalists Jean Dominique and Brignol Lindor. It prominently featured photographs of the journalists' bodies on its web site, turning them into poster victims of Aristide's alleged repression against the press.
In 2002 RSF wrote, "A journalist was beaten to death in the town of Petit-Goâve on 3 December 2001 by a gang of killers with ties to local politicians and President Jean-Bertrand Aristide's Lavalas ("Avalanche") movement. The murder happened at a time when press freedom in Haiti was steadily deteriorating in the wake of the killing of Jean Dominique, head of the radio station Haiti-Inter, on 3 April the previous year" (Lionet and Avila, 2002). Note the intentional mistranslation of Lavalas (which means flood, not avalanche), and the way RSF tied the gang of killers to "Aristide's Lavalas movement," implying that the president himself was in charge of the gang.
The article is riddled with this kind of innuendo and outright falsehoods: "In this atmosphere, the killing of Lindor was seen by the entire media as a new warning." Here RSF has already tried and convicted Aristide by implying that he ordered the murders of the journalists to send a warning to the opposition media not to be critical of him. But Jean Dominique was murdered in April of 2000, many months before Aristide was even elected, and there is likewise no evidence the president had knowledge of the Lindor murder.
In the same piece RSF called the Aristide government an "authoritarian regime," accused him of calling for lynchings by the "necklace" method (see origin of this slander below), described Aristide supporters as "street thugs" and concluded that all of these alleged actions the group imputed to the government were "part of a wider strategy by the authorities to make use of para-legal militias to intimidate the media."
The propaganda would have been bad enough if RSF hadn't taken additional steps to help strangle the desperately poor, aid-dependent country * a tactic it has also tried to employ against Cuba (Barahona, 2005). AP quotes Secretary General Robert Menard, referring to the government's alleged failure to bring Dominique's killer to justice, "President Jean-Bertrand Aristide is responsible for this obstruction, and we will list him among the Predators of Press Freedom, if no progress is made in coming months" (Norton, 2001).
The article continued,"Menard said he hoped the list, which would be sent to world governments and financial institutions, would help influence the European Union to prolong the suspension of some $100 million in foreign assistance." The economic sanctions imposed by the United States caused inflation to soar and deprived the government of the money it needed to operate or defend itself. To illustrate RSF's double standards, Colombia has a dismal record when it comes to prosecuting the killers of journalists, but Menard has never lobbied the United States or the EU to cut off aid to the Uribe government.
But Reporters Without Borders wasn't content with a mere cutoff in aid; by January 2002 Menard was calling on the U.S. Congress and the EU to take "individual sanctions" against Aristide and Prime Minister Yvon Neptune, including "the refusal of entry and transit visas" and "the freezing of any foreign bank accounts they have" (Norton, 2002).
Following the Feb. 29, 2004 ouster of Aristide, RSF ignored nearly all of the violence and persecution against journalists critical of the foreign-imposed Latortue government, instead claiming that press freedom had increased. RSF's 2005 and 2006 reports failed to condemn the extrajudicial execution of community journalist and radio reporter Abdias Jean, whom witnesses say was killed by police after he had snapped shots of three youngsters the police had killed. It also ignored the arrests of journalists Kevin Pina (Pacifica Radio) and Jean Ristil, and failed to properly investigate several attacks on pro-Lavalas radio stations.
Asked for his response to news of the grants, Pina had the following to say: "It was clear early on that RSF and Robert Menard were not acting as objective guardians of freedom of the press in Haiti but rather as central actors in what can only be described as a disinformation campaign against Aristide's government. Their attempts to link Aristide to the murder of Jean Dominique and their subsequent silence when the alleged hit man, Lavalas Senator Dany Toussaint, joined the anti-Aristide camp and ran for president in 2006 is just one of many examples that expose the real nature and role of organizations like RSF. They provide false information and skewed reports to build internal opposition to governments seen as uncontrollable and unpalatable to Washington while softening the ground for their eventual removal by providing justification under the pretext of attacks on the freedom of the press."
We asked the group's Haiti expert based in Paris why RSF had ignored the murder of Abdias Jean, and he said, "We asked the police about the killings of Abdias Jean and we were told by the police that it was an attack made by the police but that they didn't know he was a journalist. He was taking pictures." He admitted that none of the witnesses to the murder had been interviewed, while all the unpublished information he had on the case was based on the testimony of the police, known for their widespread killings and abuses. Regarding the arrest of Pina and Ristil he said, "Generally when somebody is put in jail, we wait to see how long they will stay.They were released so we did not take up that case." Considering RSF never took up the case of Abdias Jean, the likelihood it would stick its neck out for Pina, a critic of both the interim government and of RSF, is negligible.
He who pays the piper calls the tune. Taking its cues from the State Department, RSF has been guilty of demonizing governments that the U.S. wanted to overthrow, such as Cuba, Venezuela and Haiti, while downplaying the human rights abuses of strategic allies such as Mexico and Colombia. Because it was able to hide I.R.I. grants which would have alerted people to its ulterior motives, RSF has been an effective tool in the Bush administration's covert attacks on recalcitrant Latin American leaders. The organization has also leveraged its image as an independent human rights organization to get its message into the U.S. media and university textbooks. This would be an impressive feat for a small group of individuals with no apparent journalistic credentials were it not for the fact that they have the richest, most powerful patrons in the world.
Diana Barahona is an independent journalist with an interest in Latin American politics. She can be reached at
Jeb Sprague is a graduate student, freelance journalist, and a correspondent for Pacifica Radio's Flashpoints. Visit his blog at
Special thanks to Jeremy Bigwood and attorney Michael D. Steger.
Barahona, D. (2005, May 17). Reporters Without Borders Unmasked: It's Secret Deal With Otto Reich to Wreak Cuba's Economy.
David Ignatius (Sept. 22, 1991). Innocence Abroad: The New World of Spyless Coups. The Washington Post. Retrieved from ProQuest database. "'A lot of what we do today was done covertly 25 years ago by the CIA,' agrees [Allen] Weinstein."
Bogdanich, Walt and Nordberg, Jenny (2006, Jan. 29). Mixed U.S. Signals Helped Tilt Haiti Towards Chaos. The New York Times. Retrieved from ProQuest database.
Barry, Tom (2005, Aug. 4). Profile: International Republican Institute. International Relations Center. Retrieved July 4, 2006, from
Conkling, Will and Goble, Sam (2004, July 13). Otto Reich: A Career In Disservice. Council on Hemispheric Affairs.
Lionet, Christian and Avila, Calixto (2002, Sept. 10). Zero tolerance for the media : an enquiry into the murder of journalist Brignol Lindor. Reporters Without Borders. Retrieved on 7 July 2006 from
Necklace slander: The "necklace" allegations, as explained by Erwin Stotzky in his book Silencing the guns of Haiti , refered to a 1991 speech given by Aristide at the UN in which he vowed to "turn the streets red" employing the well-known kreyol protest mechanism of burning tires, with no explicit reference to "necklacing" or any method of violence. Soon after the speech, the Haiti Observateur, a right-wing opposition paper, twisted the kreyol metaphor into the allegation of support for "necklacing," which was recycled tenfold over the years by foreign media, CIA reports, and conservative think tanks such as the Heritage Foundation.
Norton, Michael (2001, Nov. 24). International press freedom group blasts Haitian government for stalling progress in Jean Dominique murder investigation. Associated Press. Retrieved 7 July 2006 from Lexis-Nexis database.
Obstruction slander: Three suspects (Ti Lou, Guimy and Markington) were arrested in connection with Dominique's murder under the Aristide government but they mysteriously escaped in a "prison mutiny" under Latortue's watch in February of 2005 and were never apprehended.
Norton, Michael (2002, Jan. 10). Journalists Group Urges Sanctions for Haiti's President. Associated Press. Retrieved 7 July 2006 from Lexis-Nexis database. "Aristide is personally responsible for the deterioration of press freedom in Haiti and sanctions should be taken against him personally," Menard said.
"The philosophers have only interpreted the world, in various ways. The point, however, is to change it." Karl Marx

"He would, wouldn't he?" Mandy Rice-Davies. When asked in court whether she knew that Lord Astor had denied having sex with her.

“I think it would be a good idea” Ghandi, when asked about Western Civilisation.
And then there's scumbag Bernard Kouchner, and his role in Médecins Sans Frontières.

RSF is a classic psyop. I would suspect that the majority of people - journalists or not - who deal with RSF wouldn't do the kind of due diligence revealed in the pieces in this thread, and would instead believe they were dealing with a courageous, volunteer-funded, humanitarian organisation.

"It means this War was never political at all, the politics was all theatre, all just to keep the people distracted...."
"Proverbs for Paranoids 4: You hide, They seek."
"They are in Love. Fuck the War."

Gravity's Rainbow, Thomas Pynchon

"Ccollanan Pachacamac ricuy auccacunac yahuarniy hichascancuta."
The last words of the last Inka, Tupac Amaru, led to the gallows by men of god & dogs of war
MSF?! Who knew? Not I. I'm stunned. More proof of the nefarious undercover game being played... Tell us more, s'il vous plait.
"Where is the intersection between the world's deep hunger and your deep gladness?"
Well, Ed, many of the NGO's are used as front for espionage and other activities by governments. With MSF you may like to look into the history of one of its founding members the now French Foreign Minister Bernard Kouchner. You may also notice the alacrity with which MSF seem to no longer be associated with him. Ask your local displaced Serb or Yugoslav about what happened.:nurseBig Grino a search on his name here. Many innocent and altruistic people also volunteer to work in these humanitarian organisations and they can do good work as well but their ideals are exploited by those who don't give a flying fig.
"The philosophers have only interpreted the world, in various ways. The point, however, is to change it." Karl Marx

"He would, wouldn't he?" Mandy Rice-Davies. When asked in court whether she knew that Lord Astor had denied having sex with her.

“I think it would be a good idea” Ghandi, when asked about Western Civilisation.
Indeed. Aid worker is right up there with foreign correspondent as the flimsiest cover in the world.

I assume anyone working for a governmental foreign aid programme such as US AID is spookily connected, maybe several times over, until proven otherwise.
"It means this War was never political at all, the politics was all theatre, all just to keep the people distracted...."
"Proverbs for Paranoids 4: You hide, They seek."
"They are in Love. Fuck the War."

Gravity's Rainbow, Thomas Pynchon

"Ccollanan Pachacamac ricuy auccacunac yahuarniy hichascancuta."
The last words of the last Inka, Tupac Amaru, led to the gallows by men of god & dogs of war
Then what of ?

It would be a lot easier if everyone just went around wearing

[Image: beanie_hat200.jpg]

their IFF beanies...

[Image: hum_fig2.gif]
"Where is the intersection between the world's deep hunger and your deep gladness?"
Come the revolution Ed it we will make it compulsory for Bernard Kouchner and his ilk to wear one of these at all times for easy identification.
[Image: beanie_hat200.jpg]
Until then we have to work it out for ourselves.
"The philosophers have only interpreted the world, in various ways. The point, however, is to change it." Karl Marx

"He would, wouldn't he?" Mandy Rice-Davies. When asked in court whether she knew that Lord Astor had denied having sex with her.

“I think it would be a good idea” Ghandi, when asked about Western Civilisation.

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