What’s the Hughes Paragraph?
Lesley Hughes explains.
The day after I was nominated to run in the federal election of 2008, as the Liberal candidate in Kildonan/St. Paul, an anonymous blogger alleged a column I had written in 2002 was anti-Semitic.
I wrote the column entitled “Get the Truth”, which was published in Winnipeg’s community newspapers, owned then by Transcontinental Media Inc. for the purpose of informing readers about Canada’s unexamined war in Afghanistan.
Did my column have an influence on people? Perhaps. But it was posted by The United Church of Canada on their Peace and Justice website, where it remained for six years.
In 2008, in my fight to clear my name from allegations of anti-Semitism, and uphold the right of journalists to write freely, paragraph 8 became the contentious issue. The full column follows.
Get the Truth – by Lesley Hughes
Last week Canada revealed itself once again as a truly unique nation. In a world where dead warriors are commonplace and taken for granted, this country stopped, paid attention, lowered the flags and gave full military honours to four soldiers, who died inexplicably and tragically at the hands of our allies.
We all felt the shock and the sorrow. The corporate media, privately owned newspapers, television and radio chains lingered especially on the pain and dignity of their survivors.
This was hard to swallow, coming from the same media that, in a fit of Me-Too-ism, couldn’t wait to send young Canadians into a war on terrorism, which they hardly bothered to investigate; the same media that show every willingness to sacrifice more lives and families without pausing to confront the most basic question Canadians want answered about Afghanistan. What, exactly, are we doing there?
Truth may have been the casualty of war in former ages, but this war is different. While major media busy themselves waving flags, a global network of independent journalists, who have no interests to protect, no secrets to hide, are tracking and documenting its development on a daily basis.
Among the best: the Web site The Emperor’s New Clothes (www.tenc.net) and Mike Ruppert, editor and publisher of From the Wilderness newsletter out of California (www.copvcia.com) .
Using and sharing only published and sourced news stories from world media, and official documents of various governments either leaked or available under freedom of information acts, these journalists have assembled a disturbing picture, which suggests CIA foreknowledge and complicity of highly placed officials in the U.S. government around the attacks on the World Trade Center Sept. 11.
Many official sources are claiming to have warned the American intelligence community, which spends $30 billion a year gathering information, about the attacks on the twin towers on that heartbreaking day.
German Intelligence (BND) claims to have warned the U.S. last June, the Israeli Mossad and Russian Intelligence in August. Israeli businesses, which had offices in the Towers, vacated the premises a week before the attacks, breaking their lease to do it. About 3000 Americans working there were not so lucky.
Ironically, the stock market was also warning anyone who cared to notice that something peculiar was afoot: in the week prior to Sept. 11, unknown speculator(s) were suddenly betting that the stocks of United Airlines and American Airlines were going to fall in value; the trades were placed through Deutschebank/AB Brown, a firm formerly managed by Buzzy-Krongard, now executive director of the CIA.
So far, no one has been bold enough to claim $2.5 million in profits. No serious search for the speculator is under way.
More important to Canadians, the facts uncovered by Internet journalism suggest that the war in Afghanistan has little to do with the attacks of Sept.11; that it’s the result of lengthy failed negotiations between American businessmen and the Taliban over access to drugs and oil.
Mike Ruppert, a former LAPD narcotics officer turned journalist, maintains that Wall Street, (from whom the CIA gets its strategists and directions) is heavily dependent on laundered drug money, which helps keep the Fortune 500 and the stock market afloat. The IMF recently estimated that about $1.5 trillion goes through the world’s banks every year, at least $500 billion of it from drugs.
His documents show that in January, 2001, the Taliban destroyed their opium crops, which normally supply 70 per cent of the world’s heroin. In May, the U.S. gave the Taliban $43 Million in mysterious aid. Sept. 11 was a turning point.
The U.S. bombed, invaded, captured the Taliban, and opium farms are now back in business. The Financial Times has reported that the next harvest will be a record breaking 4,500 tonnes, much of it headed to the U.S.A.
Ruppert and others have tracked the progress of an urgent pipeline, which American oilmen have been trying to build through Afghanistan since 1991. They stated publicly that they could not do it without a sympathetic Afghan government in place. Newly installed prime minister Hamid Karzai is a former employee of Unocal Oil.
Negotiations on the Central Asian pipeline resumed in October and an agreement to proceed with it was announced in February.
Ruppert also notes that Osama Bin Laden was treated for his chronic kidney disease at the American Hospital in Dubai last summer. Although wanted for the bombing of two U.S. embassies and eligible for execution by American agents, he flew away undisturbed. The sole coverage of these events in Canada has come from Barrie Zwicker, media critic at Vision TV.
If the work of Internet journalists is correct, then the war is neither a holy war, not a grand clash of civilizations between East and West, and our soldiers were lost to us and to their families to keep drugs and oil profits flowing in the U.S.
Until we know the truth, we should refuse to add one more Canadian body to the pile of dead in Afghanistan. Not one. Canada should get the truth or get out.
I believe that my own experience, in some small way, will help other journalists when referencing previously published material.