Remarks from BLOOR CINEMA EVENT panel

Toronto, 9/11/03

By Barrie Zwicker

There’s no single way to approach a mystery, or a crime scene, or history. One can begin with details and build up an ever-larger picture (as New Orleans District Attorney Jim Garrison did in connection with the assassination of John F. Kennedy). Or you can start with a hunch, as detectives would call it. Or with pattern recognition. Or look at the big picture and ask “Why?” “Who benefits?” “Why now?” And other such questions.

In the case of the events of 9/11 one question forced itself into my mind by 10 o’clock that morning: “Where the heck is the air force?” This was displaced by the sudden realization a dear friend worked at the World Trade Center. Unsuccessful phone calls, shock and grief occupied my being until that evening I learned he escaped injury. By that time my incredulity about the lack of jet interceptors had grown, then turned into deep suspicions. By the end of the day when the culprit had been identified and the need for a war on Afghanistan to find him was raised, my son and I agreed something was very, very fishy.

By Sept. 12th I recognized the pattern. The events, the timing, the modus operandi, all fit the pattern of other big war-triggering deceptions of history. It all smacked of an inside job, of complicity. Nothing I’ve learned since has pointed in any other direction.

That is the big picture. But I want to look at that big picture another way, by examining parallels between Bush’s America and Hitler’s Germany.

Through this lens it becomes clear that America is hurtling along the road to full-fledged fascism. To recognize this is the necessary first step in deflecting the juggernaut and creating the possibility of more peaceful tomorrows. I suggest it is simply descriptive to assert that America is the Fourth Reich. All the key tendencies and structures are in place. It is legitimate and necessary to correctly employ the power of naming.

Fascism according to my dictionary - I quote -- is “any rightwing (and) nationalist ideology or movement with an authoritarian and hierarchical structure that is fundamentally opposed to democracy and liberalism.” Add racism and brutality and you have Hitler’s Third Reich in a nutshell. Eight characteristics.

By any sober analysis America has become rightwing and nationalist. At the same time I am soulfully aware of the tremendous numbers of Americans ashamed, appalled, afraid and angry about the direction of their government and too many of their fellow citizens.

Signs of growing authoritarianism in the USA are evident especially to those outside the self-absorbed cocoon of U.S. culture. The signs include the supine attitude toward authority of most of the mainstream media.

Contrary to incessant rhetoric about democracy, the U.S. power structure is considerably hierarchical. Money power comprises the main rungs of the hierarchy. According to the New York Times of June 13th the Republicans were confident of raising at least $170-million for George W. Bush’s 2004 election campaign, redefining what the Times called “standards” for fund-raising. Both the hierarchy of money and the antagonism to democracy are spelled out in Greg Palast’s The Best Democracy Money Can Buy.

That the U.S. establishment is opposed to liberalism - no matter how you define liberalism -- can hardly be debated. We already have the eight grounds for the dictionary definition of fascism, for responsibly using the term Fourth Reich. But additionally consider just 20 of more than 100 parallels between the USA today and Hitler’s Germany:

1 -- Anti-communism, anti-Marxism, anti-socialism is visceral.

2 - The obverse: Market fundamentalism, a quasi-religious faith in capitalism.

3 -- Corporations are at the centre of the power structure.

4 -- Corruption at the top is endemic.

5 -- The number of people consigned to the grave by military and paramilitary actions in both cases is in the millions. Backdate the Fourth Reich to the end of the Second World War and the number murdered by U.S. forces equals or outnumbers the toll in the Holocaust. Three million in Vietnam alone.

6 -The brutalityof the regime is a matter of record for those who are willing to examine it.

7 -- Most of the America’s victims are Asians, indigenous peoples of Latin America, and more recently “towel heads.” The racism is clear.

8 -- In both Reichs the leader was illegally installed into power.

9 --World domination is the ambition.

10 -- Seizure of other countries’ oil. Grabbing Russia’s Baku oil fields was a major objective of Hitler.

11 -- Pre-emptive or “preventive” war is policy and practice.

12 -- Highly-orchestrated propaganda campaigns are a staple.

13 -- The use of religion. “God bless America” is a U.S. presidential benediction at the end of every lying speech. In William L. Shirer’s classic, The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich, he quotes the führer’s minister of church affairs as declaring the Nazi party “stands on the basis of Positive Christianity, and Positive Christianity is National Socialism … National Socialism is doing God’s will…”

14 -- An ever-encroaching police state is a sure sign you’re living in a Reich.

15 -- International and domestic laws are breached, resisted and undermined, along with rejection or subversion of multilateral agreements and organizations. Hitler pulled Germany out of the League of Nations altogether. In America’s case the United Nations is sidelined or embraced according to the Empire’s needs.

16-- Manipulation of fear of “terrorism” - real and imagined -- is central.

17 - Hypocritically to the nth degree, at the same time, actual terrorism is carried out by fascist states. Some is wholesale, such as Stuka dive bombers over Spain and V2 rockets into London. Or today’s bunker busters, daisy cutters, helicopter gunships and depleted uranium munitions. Some is retail, recruiting, training and funding contras and mujahideen.

18 -- The “pitiful giant” syndrome is invoked. “Our enemies are powerful,” it goes, so we must arm endlessly “in self-defense.” Often accompanied with the high-sounding: “Our enemies taunt us, and we are patient, but our patience is not endless.”

19 -- A preoccupation with secrecy. Secrecy is a precondition for deception.

20 -- Deception, above all, is the key to everything for a Reich. The leaders are marinated in a complete obsession with lying and deceiving at every turn. Deceptions are the regime’s key to mobilizing public opinion. Deception is needed to fool the citizenry into relinquishing their civil rights and thereby many avenues of dissent. Deception precedes and leads to the police state. Deception precedes and leads to war. At every step deception is required for a Reich’s gaining and maintaining power, and carrying out all its other nefarious actions.

Without successful deceptions the Reich agenda simply cannot proceed. If the deceptions can be unmasked early enough and sufficiently the Reich collapses. No Reich so far has collapsed this way. In an information age it might be possible.

The masterpiece deceptions are those so big that ordinary decent honest people cannot or will not comprehend or face that they exist.

They are a species of what the anarchist Bakunin described as “the propaganda of the act.” An act such as a bombing or assassination is also a message, is propaganda. A potent version is the fake act, for instance a bombing which the perpetrators make appear to be carried out by others. The gold standard of these is the election-stealing or war-triggering fake event, especially one involving “foreign terrorists.”

This makes pivotal the parallel between the Reichstag fire of 1933, on the one hand, and the events of 9/11, on the other.

The Reichstag fire of February 27, 1933 was in its day as iconic as were the events of September 11, 2001 in ours. The Reichstag fire was blamed on a communist, subsequently decapitated. And by extension, the fire was blamed on all Communists. The historical evidence is that the Nazis arranged the conflagration. In the Rise and Fall, Shirer writes: “…beyond reasonable doubt it was the Nazis who planned the arson and carried it out for their own political ends.”

The idea for the fire, writes Shirer, almost certainly originated at the top, with Goebbels and Goring.

Vice-chancellor von Papen recalled that when he arrived at the blazing parliament buildings Goering was already on the scene shouting “This is a communist crime…”

“Hitler lost no time,” Shirer writes, “in exploiting the Reichstag fire to the limit.” The very next day he prevailed on the President to sign a decree “for the Protection of the People and the State,” suspending the seven sections of the constitution which guaranteed individual and civil liberties. It was described as a “defensive measure against Communist acts of violence against the state.”

The parallel with the events of 9/11 is stunning. The official narrative, introduced with Goring-like speed, emerged within two hours: the “attack on America” was portrayed as the work of “terrorists,” one evil man, Osama bin Laden, and a small group of co-conspirators, the 2001 equivalents of the 1933 Communists.

The number and magnitude of anomalies surrounding 9/11 can point to only one conclusion: 9/11 was a completely made-in-the-USA inside job, a manufactured incident planned and run by some among the top leadership.

To conclude I want to deal with just one of the major anomalies, the failure of any jet interceptors to turn a wheel, until it was too late to prevent the calamity. It’s a sad commentary that probably the best way for me to make the point is simply to show you my Vision TV commentary of January 28th of last year. That’s 20 months ago. This became part of the video The Great Deception, on sale at the Global Outlook table.

[ROLL COMMENTARY RE LACK OF JETS, RUNS 4:46]

Where there’s a design there’s a designer. One of the most designing groups at the top of the U.S. empire is that clique of neocons who comprise the Project for a New American Century (PNAC). Key members called for years, even decades, for a muscular expansion of U.S. military and economic might, an unapologetically imperialist America.

In September 2000, one year before 9/11, PNAC released a document, Rebuilding America’s Defenses. The document states, on page 51, that mobilizing the U.S. public behind an imperialist agenda will be long and difficult “absent some catastrophic and catalyzing event like a new Pearl Harbor.” You can’t get much clearer than that by way of proof that “superhawks” - fascists -- at the pinnacle of U.S. power were consciously thinking of the need for something as monstrous as the events of 9/11.

Revealing the fraud of 9/11 in my opinion is the single most important task faced by civilization today. That it was dared is the supreme Achilles heel of the Fourth Reich. If enough people can be awakened to the enormity of the crime, and who its perpetrators are, a politically-relevant constituency would be created.

The possibility of a cleansing transformation would emerge. Every worthwhile initiative you can name, be it environmental, social, political or economic, would benefit from politically-relevant exposure of the Bush regime’s complicity in the events of 9/11.

In America there’s a community of peace and environmental and justice activists, that includes theists, atheists, artists, workers, intellectuals and plain folk, old and young. This community is unidentified, unrecognized and therefore disenfranchised by the mainstream media. It may number 30-million, equal to the population of Canada. It appears to be the responsibility imposed by history on this community especially, but on all of us anywhere in the world who are 9/11 skeptics, to recognize our own existence, importance and power and to exercise that power non-violently before it’s too late, to help patriotic Americans save their country and the world from full-fledged fascism.

I’m in regular dialogue with scores of Americans. Many have told me they’re aware of the possibility of the suspension of the U.S. Constitution (there would be a startling, deceptive, pretext of course) and other goose steps toward a führership. Should the U.S. Constitution be fully suspended - currently it’s being gradually undermined and dismantled -- it could be too late to prevent awful and perhaps permanent catastrophe.

The Fourth Reich and its outposts, including the ones within each of us, is perhaps humanity’s last major challenge. Understanding and sufficiently dismantling it would probably lead to a period of chaos. But from that could emerge another world, still imperfect, but one less in imminent danger of Armageddon. In it we might finally face a reasonable future.