Posts Tagged ‘albert einstein institution’
by stuartbramhall in Things That Aren't What They Seem
(This is the last of five posts about the American godfather of nonviolent resistance, Gene Sharp, and the role of CIA and Pentagon-funded foundations and think tanks in funding and promoting nonviolent resistance)
In the Arab Spring revolutions of 2011, Sharp and the Albert Einstein Institution (AEI) seem to have handed the baton to his disciple Peter Ackerman. According to Louis Proyect, the latter is a former AEI board member and founder (in 2002) of the International Center for Nonviolent Conflict (ICNC). It was the ICNC that offered nonviolence training sessions in Cairo for Egyptian and Tunisian activists.
As Proyect makes clear Ackerman, like Sharp and Zunes, is no progressive. A Wall Street financier and hedge fund manager (formerly number two in Michael Milken’s junk bond empire), Ackerman is a member of the Council of Foreign Relations (CFR), as well as a former director of Freedom House, previously run by former CIA director James Woolsey. Ackerman also sits on the board of Spirit of America, a group that is “dedicated to spreading US influence worldwide, with a particular emphasis on covert cyber-intelligence measures.” Ackerman is also on the advisory board of the ultraconservative Cato Institute’s Project on Social Security Choice, which proposes to privatize Social Security and allow younger workers to invest their Social Security taxes in private retirement accounts.
“Arab Spring” Neither Spontaneous Nor Indigenous
As others have documented elsewhere, the 2011 uprisings in the Middle East and North Africa were neither spontaneous nor indigenous. Many of the individuals and groups who helped organize them had received training (at times in the US) sponsored by the State Department and CIA-linked foundations, such as the National Endowment for Democracy (NED). The New York Times makes this clear in a April 2011 article U.S. Groups Helped Nurture Arab Uprisings. It states specifically that “a number of the groups and individuals directly involved in the revolts and reforms sweeping the region, including the April 6 Youth Movement in Egypt, the Bahrain Center for Human Rights and grass-roots activists like Entsar Qadhi, a youth leader in Yemen, received training and financing from groups like the International Republican Institute, the National Democratic Institute and Freedom House, a nonprofit human rights organization based in Washington.”
Likewise, as Canadian writers and analysts Ahmed Bensaada, Michael Chossudovsky and Tony Cartalucci have documented, leaders of the NED-funded Serbian resistance group OTPOR (now renamed CANVAS – Center for Applied Nonviolent Strategies) assisted in many of these trainings, often using Gene Sharp’s materials (see http://landdestroyer.blogspot.co.nz/2011/11/soros-celebrates-fall-of-tunisia.html).
Follow the Money
French Canadian author Ahmed Bensaada also discusses these relationships at length in his 2011 book L’Abarabesque Americaine, emphasizing the strong links between the two lead organizers in Egypt’s April 6th movement (Bassam Samir and Adel Mohamed), the US State Department, the NED and other CIA-funded foundations that financed the “color revolutions” in Eastern Europe. Bensaada also enumerates the pro-democracy organizations in other Arab countries (Algeria, Bahrain, Egypt, Iraq, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebannon, Libya, Morocco, Palestine, Tunisia, Yemen, and Syria) that received similar funding. In his appendix, he identifies specific pro-democracy groups by name and the exact amount each received (in 2009) from CIA-linked foundations.
Iran‘s Failed Color Revolution
According to Cartalucci, the destabilization campaign that culminated in the failed 2009 Green Revolution in Iran was drawn up by the corporate-funded Brookings Institution, as articulated in their 2009 report Which Path to Persia?. As Cartalucci notes elsewhere, the mechanics of organizing the Iranian opposition was subcontracted to organizations like the US-funded CANVAS. See also The Color Revolution Fails in Iran and the 2007 BBC report Iran Shows New Scholars’ Footage, linking George Soros to US efforts to destabilize Iran.
by stuartbramhall in Things That Aren't What They Seem
(This is the fourth of five posts about the American godfather of nonviolent resistance, Gene Sharp, and the role of CIA and Pentagon-funded foundations and think tanks in funding and promoting nonviolent resistance.)
There is no question that Thierry Meyssan’s 2005 article on Gene Sharp’s extensive links to the US military-intelligence complex is one of the most important exposes of the 21st century. Its only weakness is Meyssan’s failure to cite many of his references. What follows is the best publicly verifiable chronology of Sharp’s life I could come up with (most comes from Meyssan’s 2005 article with sources added):
- 1953 – conscientious objector during Korean War, imprisoned for nine months for refusing to report for alternative duty. Imprisoned for refusing to fight in Korean War (People and The Progressive
- 1973 – publishes The Politics of Nonviolent Action (1973) with an introduction by Thomas C. Shelling. Shelling was a well known economist and professor of foreign affairs, national security, nuclear strategy, and arms control. After working with US ambassador Averel Harriman in Paris in 1948 to implement the Marshall Plan, Shelling had a fifty year affiliation with the Rand Corporation (US military think tank) and is widely credited as the theoretician behind military escalation in Vietnam.
- 1985 – publishes a book entitled Making Europe Unconquerable: the Potential of Civilian-base Deterrence and Defense. The second edition includes a preface by George Kennan, historian and State Department senior diplomat whose writings influenced Truman in the creation of the Truman Doctrine. Kennan is viewed as the father of the US foreign policy of “containment” (by force) of Soviet expansion.
- 1983 – founds the Albert Einstein Institution (AEI) in Boston, with the assistance of Major General Edward B Atkeson, who was on the first AEI advisory board. The AEI website identifies Atkeson as Senior Fellow at the Institute of Land Warfare Association of the US Army. According to the CIA website, during the 1980s Atkeson was also a National Intelligence Officer for General Purpose Forces.
- 1986, 1988 and 1989 – travels to Israel/Palestine to bolster support for the Palestinian Center for the History of Non-Violence, founded in 1983 by one of Sharp’s disciple. It’s a matter of public record that Sharp met with Colonel Reuvan Gal, who directed the Israel Defense Force (IDF) Psychological Action Division. Meyssan claims the two conspired to create a split in the Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO) by creating a dissident “nonviolent” group. Gal and Sharp claim the purpose of their meetings were to devise ways to dissuade IDF commanders from using tanks and excessive military force against Palestinian settlers (see The Jeruselem Fund, Mubarak Awad, and Nonviolence).
- 1987 – receives funding from the US Institute of Peace to host seminars instructing US allies on defense based on civil disobedience. By law, the US Institute of Peace is an extension of US intelligence.
- 1989 – assists Colonel Robert Helvey in training anticommunist Burmese opposition groups concerned about the growing strength of the Burmese Communist Party. The AEI website refers to Helvey as a retired US military officer and ex-military attaché in Burma. He was actually a thirty year veteran of the Defense Intelligence Agency with extensive experience in overseeing clandestine and subversive operations in Southeast Asia (see Who is Col Bob Helvey and Peace Magazine Archive). Following his retirement from the DIA, he became chairman of the board of the Albert Einstein Institution.
- 1990 – with his AEI team (according to AEI website), assists Lithuanian opposition leaders in organizing popular resistance against the Red Army. According to the website, the AEI also did trainings with anticommunist opposition groups in Tibet, Estonia, and Belarus.
- 1998 – travels, with Helvey, to Eastern Europe to train Otpor, a group of Serbian youth opposed to Slobodan Milosevic and Europe’s last communist government. Milosevic was immensely popular with Serbian people for standing up to NATO and for his generous social policies. The trainings were funded by the National Endowment for Democracy (NED), the International Republican Institute (IRI) and the US Agency for International Development (USAID). (See 2000 New York Times interview with NED officer Paul B. McCarthy).
- 2003 – assists, with AEI staff, in the launch of the “Rose Revolution” in Georgia (see The Secrets of the Georgian Coup).
- 2004 – Helvey and other AEI members meet with the Ukrainian resistance in Kiev (see Mowat’s The Coup Plotters).
- 2003-2004 – travels, with Helvey and other AEI team members to Venezuela to meet with wealthy Venezuelan opposition leaders, following the failed 2002 CIA-sponsored coup against Chavez. The AEI advises them in organizing a recall referendum against Chavez. They also train the leaders of Súmate during the August 2004 demonstrations and assist in the formulation of “Operation Guarimba,” a series of often-violent street blockades that result in several deaths. According to an analysis published by Strategic Forecasting (Stratfor), Venezuelan student leaders traveled to Belgrade in 2005 to meet with representatives of AEI-trained OTPOR/CANVAS, before traveling to Boston to consult directly with Sharp himself.
To be continued.
by stuartbramhall in Things That Aren't What They Seem
(This is the third of five posts about the American godfather of nonviolent resistance, Gene Sharp, and the role of CIA and Pentagon-funded foundations and think tanks in funding and promoting nonviolent resistance.)
In my last blog I discussed Stephen Zunes’ strongly worded article and petition defending so-called progressive nonviolent guru Gene Sharp and the rebuttal, Sharp Reflection Warranted, by Australian researcher Michael Barker. The response by Canadian activist Stephen Gowans, Defending the Indefensible: Sham Democracy Promoter Defends Imperialist Ties, is even more critical. He begins by questioning why Zunes, a paid adviser to the International Center for Nonviolent Conflict (ICNC), an organization founded by former junk bond king Michael Milken’s right-hand man Peter Ackerman, continues to defend “non-violent pro-democracy” activists who promote “overthrow” movements abroad. Gowans is most troubled by Zunes’ dismissal of Eva Golinger’s Monthly Review expose, Bush vs. Chavez: Washington’s War on Venezuela, which discusses assistance Sharp and the Albert Einstein Institution (AEI) provided the Venezuelan opposition to help them find “new and inventive ways to overthrow Chavez.”
A Classic Straw Man Argument
Gowans also points out that Zunes’ defense of Sharp rests almost entirely on a straw man argument concerning so-called “fabricated allegations,” that Sharp is part of a Bush administration conspiracy to overthrow foreign governments. It’s a straw man argument mainly because none of Sharp’s critics have specifically linked him to the Bush presidency. Sharp has been criticized mainly for accepting funding from and acting (whether intentionally or not) on behalf of US corporate and government interests. As Gowans rightly points out, these forces are much broader than the Bush administration.
Zunes’ Links with Peter Ackerman and the CFR
He goes on to argue that Zunes is hardly a neutral or objective party in this debate, given his involvement with Peter Ackerman and the ICNC. Ackerman, hardly the progressive peace activist, is a Wall Street investment banker, a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, and head of Freedom House which, according to Noam Chomsky (in Manufacturing Consent), is interlocked with the CIA and a “virtual propaganda arm of the (US) government and international right wing.” According to Louis Proyect, Ackerman is also on the advisory board of the ultraconservative Cato Institute’s Project on Social Security Choice. Not surprisingly, this group strongly advocates privatizing Social Security.
Rationalizing Government Funding for the Peace Movement
Zunes, according to Sharp, devotes two pages to rubbishing the charges against Sharp, only to reinforce the case his critics have been making. He does so by revealing that the AEI
• is funded by corporate foundations.
• is open to accepting funding from organizations that have received funding from government sources (i.e., accepts government funding passed through intermediary organizations, such as the Ford Foundation, Rand Corporation, US Institute for Peace, etc.).
• has received grants from the US Congress’s National Endowment for Democracy (an organization that does overtly what the CIA used to do covertly.).
• has advised members of the Venezuelan opposition.
As Gowans stresses, Zunes clearly would like us to believe that nonviolent pro-democracy groups are not influenced by the corporations and wealthy individuals who fund them. Gowans’ article concludes by referring readers to Frances Stonor Saunders’ 2000 Cultural Cold War: The CIA and the World of Arts and Letters. Her book reveals that “non-communist left” groups receive generous funding from corporate foundations and the CIA. According to Saunders, the underlying strategy is to marginalize more militant leftists by amplifying the voice of the “pro-imperialist non-communist left.”
To be continued.
by stuartbramhall in Things That Aren't What They Seem
(This is the second of five posts about the American godfather of nonviolent resistance, Gene Sharp, and the role of CIA and Pentagon-funded foundations and think tanks in funding and promoting nonviolent resistance)
The current brouhaha over Gene Sharp was initially triggered by an article, The Albert Einstein Institution: Nonviolence According to the CIA, Thierry Meyssan published on Voltaire Net in October 2005. Meyssan, a French intellectual and political activist, first gained international prominence in 2002 by publishing a French best seller entitled L’effroyable imposteur (English title: The Big Lie). The book claimed that the 9-11 attacks were directed by right-wingers in the U.S. government and the military industrial complex seeking justification for military action in Afghanistan and Iraq. Meyssan’s 2005 article on the Albert Einstein Institutes enumerates a long list of instances in which the US government and CIA-funded foundations arranged for Sharp to meet with opposition groups receiving covert US support in their efforts to bring down Asian and Eastern European governments unfriendly to US interests.
Iran and Venezuela’s Denunciation of Sharp
The article was widely reposted on leftist and libertarian websites. In 2008, it resulted in a formal denunciation of Sharp by the Iranian government and Venezuelan president Hugo Chavez, both targets of AEI destabilization activities. In June 2008, Stephen Zunes, chair of the Academic Advisory Committee of the International Center for Nonviolent Conflict (founded and run by Wall Street financier Peter Ackerman) issued a rebuttal, Sharp Attack Unwarranted, in Foreign Policy in Focus. The latter is an on-line magazine of the Institute for Policy Studies, where Zunes serves as Middle East Editor. The article was simultaneously reprinted in the Huffington Post.
Stephen Zunes Defends Sharp’s Progressive Credentials
Like Sharp Zunes, who also teaches Politics and International Studies at the University of San Francisco, is frequently lauded as a progressive thinker and writer without close examination of some of his affiliations or his open pro-Zionism. Zunes is a self-declared Zionist: “I will be Zionist as long as there is anti-Semitism.” He has frequently and publicly asserted that he supports Israel as a Jewish state (i.e. a religious state with a single official religion) and cites the establishment of Israel as “an example of global affirmative action.” (see Stephen Zunes biographical details). Moreover, as several analysts point out, Zunes routinely minimizes or dismisses as “conspiracy theory” the role CIA-funded democracy manipulating foundations have played in “regime change” in Eastern Europe, Asia, the Middle East and North Africa (see Capital Driven Civil Society and Critique of Antiwar.com)
Zunes subsequently persuaded Noam Chomsky, Howard Zinn, Code Pink and other high profile progressives to help launch an on-line petition defending Sharp’s progressive credentials. However, as numerous critics point out, he never addressed Meyssan’s most important concerns: the military/intelligence backgrounds of many of the Albert Einstein Institution’s (AEI’s) directors and advisory board members; their documented collaboration, together with Sharp, with opposition groups responsible for the “color” revolutions in Eastern Europe; and their work with Venezuelan opposition groups in an effort to topple president Hugo Chavez.
Sharp himself responded to Meyssan’s article in June 2007. Meyssan has posted Sharp’s letter with the original article. In it, Sharp denies ever receiving US government, CIA or NATO support or funding, except for a Department of Defense grant to support the 1972 publication of The Politics of Nonviolent Action. He acknowledges meeting with numerous opposition groups in Asia and Eastern Europe but insists that the AEI “never told them what to do.” (This contradicts reports on the AEI website that Sharp and other AEI staff trained them in nonviolent resistance techniques). Like Zunes, he fails to address the involvement of military/intelligence officials on AEI’s board of directors or AEI’s meetings with Venezuelan opposition groups.
AEI Links with the State Department and the Military-Intelligence Complex
Both Australian researcher of CIA-funded foundations, Michael Barker and Canadian activist Stephen Gowans wrote responses to Zunes’ Foreign Policy in Focus article. Barker’s rebuttal is entitled Sharp Reflection Warranted. In it, Barker points out that the problem of elite manipulation of ostensibly progressive groups isn’t a new problem and points readers to excellent links regarding collaboration between the CIA and the Ford Foundation, the National Endowment for Democracy (NED), the US Agency for International Development (USAID) and others. Barker goes on to elaborate on the right wing corporate and/or military-intelligence background of many of AEI’s board members. He also looks at the twenty or so countries where (according to the AEI website) Sharp worked with opposition groups simultaneously receiving major funding and support from the US State Department, NED and/or both.
To be continued, with a discussion of Gowans’ more lengthy and extensive rebuttal.
by stuartbramhall in Things That Aren't What They Seem
(This is the first of five posts about the American godfather of nonviolent resistance, Gene Sharp, and the role of CIA and Pentagon-funded foundations and think tanks in funding and promoting nonviolent resistance)
One important aspect of the debate over “diversity of tactics” (i.e. the decision whether to be exclusively nonviolent) in the Occupy movement relates to mounting evidence of the role CIA and Pentagon-funded foundations and think tanks play in funding and promoting nonviolent resistance training. The two major US foundations promoting nonviolence, both overseas and domestically, are the Albert Einstein Institution (AEI) and the International Center for Nonviolent Conflict (ICNC). Both receive major corporate and/or government funding, mostly via CIA “pass through” foundations. While the ICNC is funded mainly by the private fortune of hedge fund billionaire (junk bond king Michael Milken’s second in command) Peter Ackerman, the AEI has received funding from the Rand Corporation and the Department of Defense, as well as various “pass-through” foundations, such as the National Endowment for Democracy (NED), the International Republican Institute (IRI), the US Institute of Peace and the Ford Foundation (see The Ford Foundation and the CIA),which all have a long history of collaborating with the Pentagon, the State Department and the CIA in destabilizing governments unfriendly to US interests.
This is a strategy Frances Stonor Saunders outlines in her pivotal Cultural Cold War: The CIA and the World of Arts and Letters. According to Sanders, right wing corporate-backed foundations and the CIA have been funding the non-communist left since the late sixties, in the hope of drowning out and marginalizing the voice of more militant leftists. It’s also noteworthy that the governing and advisory board of both AEI and ICNC have been consistently dominated by individuals with either a military/intelligence background or a history of prior involvement with CIA “pass-through” foundations, such as NED and USAID.
Gene Sharp, the Fervent Anticommunist
Much of this debate focuses around America’s godfather of nonviolent resistance, Gene Sharp, the founder and director of the Albert Einstein Institution. Sharp’s handbooks on nonviolent protest were widely disseminated in the Eastern Europe color revolutions, in the Arab spring revolutions and in the Occupy movement in the US (see http://mailstar.net/Sharp-Soros-NED-CIA.html). Unfortunately Sharp has become a decoy in this debate, deflecting attention from the larger question of whether the US government is actively financing and promoting the work of the AEI, the ICIC and other high profile organizations that promote nonviolent civil disobedience. The question is extremely important, in my view, because it possibly explains the rigid and dogmatic attitude in the US progressive movement regarding nonviolent civil disobedience. In other words, I think it explains the knee-jerk rejection of more militant tactics, such as smashing windows and other property damage that don’t involve physical violence towards human beings.
Is Military-Intelligence Funding Compatible with Progressive Politics?
The institutional nonviolence clique has cleverly refocused the debate on whether Sharp, who is 83, is a CIA agent and whether he actively participated in US-funded destabilization efforts in Tunisia, Syria, Egypt, Libya, Iran and elsewhere that resulted in so-called “Arab Spring” revolutions. The obvious answer to both questions is no. For me the more important question is why the alternative media and “official” progressive movement embrace Sharp unconditionally as a fellow progressive without a careful look at his past or his ideological beliefs. Sharp has never made any secret of his fervent anticommunist (and antisocialist – he shares the US State Department’s animosity towards Venezuelan president Hugo Chavez) views.
Sharp makes no secret of the funding he has received from the Defense Department; the Rand Corporation; CIA-linked foundations, such as NED, the IRI and the US Institute of Peace; and George Soros’s Open Society Institute. All this information is readily available from the AEI website. Sharp himself states, “I have been arguing for years that governments and defense departments – as well as other groups – should finance and conduct research into alternatives to violence in politics and especially as a possible basis for a defense policy by prepared nonviolent resistance as a substitute for war.” (See The living library: some theoretical approaches to a strategy for activating human rights and peace, George Garbutt, 2008, Southern Cross University, Australia).
Less well known is the role military and intelligence figures have played in helping Sharp set up and run the AEI. I think most progressives would be extremely disturbed by the major role played by the military-intelligence establishment in funding and running the AEI. I think they would find it even more troubling that progressives who refer to any of this on so called “independent” or “alternative” media websites and blogs have their posts removed.
To be continued.
by stuartbramhall in Challenging the Corporate Media, Things That Aren't What They Seem
(This is the second of two posts exploring the OWS commitment to nonviolence)
The main advantage of nonviolent resistance is its effectiveness in reaching large numbers of potential supporters. History shows that civil disobedience, by itself, is relatively ineffective in producing genuine political change. The nonviolent “color” revolutions in Eastern Europe and Egypt have been very effective in producing cosmetic regime change without challenging fundamental power structures. In other words, they get rid of the unpopular dictator but leave a US-friendly elite in control of government (just as Wall Street remains firmly in control no matter who we elect as president).
The success of nonviolent resistance as a recruiting tool stems mainly from its knack for provoking state violence. This provides dramatic mainstream media coverage that forces apolitical members of society to re-examine fundamental beliefs about freedom, justice and the rule of law. Although nonviolent civil disobedience involves lawbreaking, it does so from a moral high ground. There is a strong tradition in Judeo-Christian religions that people of conscience have a duty to uphold international, religious and humanitarian law when it conflicts with unjust national and local laws. Because these views enjoy strong public support, the Internet and social media can be used to recruit participants and supporters for nonviolent actions in the thousands and potentially tens of thousands. In contrast, using the Internet to recruit activists for “violent” actions, even those limited to property destruction, is illegal and provokes an instantaneous response from the authorities.
The two biggest obstacles OWS will face in maintaining their commitment to nonviolence will be the attitude of low income and minority groups who deal with police violence on a daily basis and growing concerns about the possible role CIA-funded left gatekeeping foundations have played in engineering the Occupy movement’s exclusive commitment to nonviolence. This concern is heightened by the use of nonviolent guru Gene Sharp’s materials at several Occupy sites.
The CIA Role in Nonviolent Revolutions
Sharp’s longstanding ties with the CIA and the “democracy manipulating” foundations that instigated the “color” revolutions in Eastern Europe, Asia, the Middle East and North Africa (including Egypt) receive little attention in the foundation-funded “alternative” media. However the issue has begun to seep into the blogosphere, thanks to good coverage in the French and Australian left-progressive media. One example is a well-referenced November 25th article by Tony Carlucci in Land Destroyer entitled “How to Start (a Wall Street backed) Revolution” (http://landdestroyer.blogspot.com/2011/11/how-to-start-wall-street-backed.html).I first came across the article December 1st on the Occupy Oakland website. It was taken down a week later, which I find quite ominous.
As Tierry Messan outlines in January 2005 on Votairenet (http://www.voltairenet.org/The-Albert-Einstein-Institution), Sharp, a fervent anticommunist, initially formulated his nonviolence theory to assist anticommunist movements. He wrote his 1993 From Dictatorship to Democracy while working for the Albert Einstein Institution (AEI), specifically for use in the Myanmar (Burma) “pro-democracy” movement. He subsequently participated in the establishment of Burma’s Democratic Alliance – a coalition of notable anticommunists that were quick to join the military government. He later worked with Taiwan’s Progressive Democratic Party, which favored the independence of the island from communist China, something the US officially opposed. His other work included unifying the Tibetan opposition under the Dalai Lama; trying to form a dissident group to split the Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO); and secretly training the Psychological Action division of the Israeli armed forces.
The “Color” Revolutions in Eastern Europe and Asia
The CIA would subsequently utilize Sharp’s book, From Dictatorship to Democracy, throughout Eastern Europe and Asia, and in 2011, the US-engineered “Arab Spring.” Sharp himself, with funding from the AEI, the US government backed National Endowment for Democracy (NED) and its subsidiary International Republican Institute (IRI), and George Soros’ Open Society Institute, is also on record as providing “humanitarian” advice and training to antigovernment activists in Serbia, Zimbabwe, Tunisia, Libya, Egypt, Syria, Iran, Belarus, Myanmar (Burma), Thailand, and Malaysia.
The February 2011 Al Jazeera documentary Egypt: Seeds of Change http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QrNz0dZgqN8 echoes many of Messan’s and Carlucci’s concerns regarding the influence of CIA-backed foundations in the Egyptian uprising.
Ahmed Bensaada goes even further in Arabesque American, published in May 2011. Bensaada describes the direct involvement of the CIA-backed Serbian group Otpor in the MENA (Middle East and North Africa) “revolutions,” as well as a series pf joint conferences organized by the CIA-backed Center for Nonviolent Action and Strategies (CANVAS) and the State Department, in which Arab activists were brought to the US for training in “nonviolent” organizing techniques (http://stuartbramhall.aegauthorblogs.com/tag/arabesque-americaine/).
Why the CIA Promotes Nonviolence
So why is the CIA so keen on promoting nonviolent revolution? University of California –Santa Barbara sociology professor Peter Robinson outlines the new CIA strategy in his 1996 book Promoting Polyarchy. According to Robinson, as CIA-backed dictatorships around the world lose their grip, the CIA preemptively co-opts the natural (violent) insurgencies that arise to topple them. They themselves instigate popular unrest, using the ensuing chaos to install a puppet of their choosing.
The International Center for Nonviolent Conflict
The International Center for Nonviolent Conflict (ICNC) is another important “democracy manipulating” foundation that promotes Sharp’s work. Australian researcher and journalist Michael Barker’s articles about ICNC (http://www.greenleft.org.au/node/38214) reveal it has strong intelligence links but is independently funded by Peter Ackerman, Michael Milken’s second in command in his junk bond empire. Barker and others also raise concerns about Stephen Zunes, ICNC’s chief academic adviser and one of Sharp’s strongest defenders in the mainstream and alternative media (http://xevolutie.blogspot.com/2011/03/124-peter-myers-over-gene-sharp-en-de.html).
In “The Junk Bond ‘Teflon Guy’ Behind Egypt’s Nonviolent Revolution,” Middle East investigative journalist Maidhc O Cathail examines Ackerman’s involvement (along with the Albert Einstein Institution) in the attempted coup against Hugo Chavez. He also asks the thought-provoking question: why Milken was sent to jail, while Ackerman made off with a fortune (http://maidhcocathail.wordpress.com/2011/02/18/the-junk-bond-%E2%80%9Cteflon-guy%E2%80%9D-behind-egypt%E2%80%99s-nonviolent-revolution)?