Saturday, August 28, 2010

America has a Communist -style Education Funding System & Other More Serious Things About Yugoslav Students

This is a CIA study of Yugoslav university students and youth written in the summer of 1968 according to 5/7/1973 Memorandum to the DCI regarding the broader report this paper of which this document was a portion. This document was reported to exist when the CIA released its infamous "Crown Jewels" collection I have a limited amount of time, so I am only going to hit the report’s highlights:

A)The report notes the age range of the Partisan generation which at the time of the report range from the leadership like Tito being well into their seventies and eighties while at the tail end there were individuals still in their forties. (pg.4)

B)Interestingly, Yugoslav schools and American schools are funded via the same primary means- local taxes. Just like in America, areas of Yugoslavia with high levels of wealth had high quality schools, while economically disadvantaged areas had inferior educational opportunities (pg.9)

A personal note, I intend to criticize everyone I know who mindlessly favors local control of education as being a "Commie" and by citing this report.

C)Something else I found noteworthy- Yugoslavia reduced the student loan burdens of university students who rapidly completed their studies. Given the white hot mess that Yugoslav higher education come be, it’s not easy to say if that was a good idea or would be a good idea in the United States, but I think it might be worthwhile to examine it as a student loan reform here in the United States. (pg.9)

D)Finally, the students of Sarajevo rioted along with the students of Belgrade. (pg.10)

A CIA 1968 Study of Yugoslav Youth

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

The NSA and the NIEs on Yugoslavia

I have submitted FOIA requests to the NSA for their records regarding all the National Intelligence Estimates that were done on Yugoslavia after the creation of the NSA in 1952. Without fail, they fire back no records responses. Interesting.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Stjepan Mesic's Hardcore

Earlier this year, Bosnian and Balkans politics heaved a bit when Stjepan Mesic publicly threatened the Republika Srpska with destruction if they took steps to destroy the current Bosnian state. Bosnian Serbs gasped in horror. The West frettered. Bosnians took heart. The best reaction of was of my Croatian friend who declared that Mesic, a civilized leftist, "simply was taking whatever measures were needed to keep Bosnia together and the unwashed, right-wing, Ustasha fucks that make up the Bosnian "Croat" (*) population out of our country." (1)

What wasn't reported was that Mesic had been making these threats privately for at least year according to the U.S. State Department. Apparently, whenever Milorad Dodik escalated his rhetoric and threats to break away from Bosnia, Mesic would reply with threats of breaking the RS. Nice.  See the State Department cable on the matter:

1/20/2010 State Department Cable on Stjepan Mesic Threat to Destroy the Republika Srpska

(1) He did air quotes. Had he been drunk, he probably would have gone off on our mutual Bosnian Croat friend about how he was Bosnian and needed to accept that fact.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

The Security and Exchange Commission Investigation into 9/11 Terror Trading

In the immediate aftermath of 9-11, the media was filled with a flurry of stories about the “shorting” of stocks of the airline companies involved. Then the story died out in the mainstream media and shifted into the realm of para-politics and conspiracy theory. In April 2010, the Security and Exchange Commission opted to make a discretionary disclosure of a portion of their report into the short trading. It found that the increase in “put options” was the product of industry publications and that the the sec failed to discover 'any evidence that anyone who had advance knowledge of the attack sought to profit from the information by trading securities” and the trading was consistent with a legitimate trading strategy.”

Pre-September 11, 2001 Trading Review

Commies in the US Army

Yes, there were godless Communists in the United States Army. However, they did not worm their way into our beloved armed forces using guile and deception. They were invited.

During the Cold War, the United States attempted to woo Yugoslavia into the NATO/Western powers camp through economic and even military assistance. One form of military assistance offered was the training JNA officers in US military schools such as Command and General Staff College at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas. Among the attendees was Veljko Kadijević who completed the school in 1963 and Lt. Col. Pasmiz Ramusovic(SP?*) who attended in 1965. Below is his Invitational Orders from the US Army detailing to Ramusovic the conditions of his involvement, what he needed, and was expected of him.

(*)As you will see, the documents were a blurry mess.

Ramusovic Orders

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

John Marks Templeton's FBI File

This is the FBI file of the recently deceased, international financier, and participant in the eternal war between science and religion. I had a FOIA submitted for his file after becoming curious about him after seeing repeated and rather harsh criticism of him and his namesake charity, the Templeton Foundation, from the bloggers and readers at Scienceblogs.

John Marks Templeton's FBI File

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Newly Declassified COINTELPRO Files Detail Anti-Serbian Campaign

In the course of my thesis research, I had a FOIA request submitted to the FBI seeking their COINTELPRO records on its program directed against Yugoslav emigres. According to their FOIA website, the COINTELPRO files pertaining to Yugoslav (Violence Prone Yugoslav Emigres in U. S. ) amounted to just 84 pages. I thought the FOIA request that I had submitted would be quick and free, given my entitlement to the first 100 pages of duplication being without charge.

Much to my surprise and delight, the response to my request was substantially more than expected. I actually received 178 pages of records in total. Plus, with the exception of agent names, informant names, and the names of their unwitting targets, there is little redaction allowing for a detailed and accurate reconstruction of the COINTELPRO operations directed at the Serbian emigre community in the United States.

Analysis below comes from a portion of my yet to be completed thesis:

Another reason for the lackluster response by the American government to Ustasha activities was that Ustasha activities in the United States were limited and eclipsed by the more active (in America ) Serbian émigré groups.
The Serbian émigrés were active in the United States before the Ustasha movement’s splinter factions began to take center stage. In February 1966, eight Yugoslav embassies and consulates throughout the United States and Canada were bombed. The FBI affixed responsibility for the bombings on Serbian émigrés, through it never arrested anyone in connection with the attacks. However, by the beginning of 1969, the FBI, having grown weary with the Serbian émigré communities actions, had position itself to strike back those “who have frequently capitalized on the bombings to build their reputations with the Serbians”.

A COINTELPRO campaign directed against VIOLENCE PRONE-Yugoslav émigrés were launched. The purpose of this COINTELPRO operation was “to create a feeling of mistrust” toward violent émigrés. From the currently declassified files, it appears that the first operation directed at violent Serb émigrés occurred in early 1968. The initial operation was to clandestinely distribute a flyer from a faux Serbian émigré group condemn violence against Yugoslav. However, it appears from the released records that the operation in question was long in development raising questions about possible earlier COINTELPRO operations despite FBI claims that all remaining files on COINTELPRO operations directed at violence prone Yugoslav émigrés have been released.

In October 1969, the FBI launched a plan to flush out Serbian terrorists by conducting faux investigations designed to capitalize on Yugoslav émigrés fears, spawned by a series of violent assassinations believed by most to have been done by the Yugoslav government, and convince them that Yugoslav intelligence services had infiltrated their ranks and were plotting similar acts here in the United States. Fears that this operation might lead to the widespread rupturing of the Serbian community led to modifications of the program. There were also concerns that Serbian émigrés might respond with violence, fearing the Yugoslav government. However, approval was given for the operation with the Chicago field office being given orders to formulate a plan to achieve their campaign’s objective.

Croatian terrorist are not mentioned until February 1970 as a possible target of COINTELPRO attention and investigation. In a memorandum to the FBI office, the Chicago field office reports that it had “recently been involved in determining the extent of” Otpor which the Chicago field office believed was “inclined toward militant direct action.” Chicago field office recommends expanding the planned operation to include Croatian émigrés and organizations. The FBI director agreed.

Ultimately, the Croatians were dismissed as a threat to the American national security. The FBI San Francisco found no evidence that they either promoted or were planning any violent actions against the Yugoslav government. The office reported that Croatians passively demonstrated in front Yugoslav consulate and that had been “incidents” where individuals had protested against the presence of Yugoslav officials at Croatian social gatherings. San Francisco Field Office also reported that the Ustasha movement was weak and resorted to tactics such as founding numerous organizations to all of its members would then join, creating the illusion of political clout. Ultimately, the operation was aborted due to “paranoiac fear” among Yugoslav émigrés of assassination by Yugoslav intelligence which was bolstered by the FBI’s early interviews.

Yugoslav COINTELPRO Files

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

A Real LIfe Burn Notice: Krunoslav Draganovic's Burn Notice

My favorite show is Burn Notice. The premise of the show is that the lead character, a former CIA spy named Michael Westen, was "burnt" (a burnt spy is one who is fired and transformed into a pariah) as part of an effort to recruit him into a still unknown or unknown covert conspiracy against enemies and enemies unknown. As of about midway through season four, Westen has made some progress in discovering in why he was burnt, who burnt him, and why he was burnt.

The title of the show Burn Notice comes from the document issued when a spy of individual is burnt by the intelligence community. A Burn Notice is issued when a person proves untrustworthy, dangerous to the American intelligence community after previously worthy, or just becomes a dangerous nuisance. Below is a US Army CIC “burn notice” for Krunoslav Draganovic, a Croatian priest, member of the Ustasha movement, and US Army CIC asset directed against Yugoslavia during the early portion of the Cold War. Draganovic will initially come to US Army CIC attention during the early days of the Cold War. He was evacuating members of the Ustasha movement from Europe to destinations such as Argentina. Later, Draganovic was employed by the US Army to evacuate Klaus Barbie from Europe. Eventually, Draganovic became a target of US intelligence and an asset for the US Army CIC. (*)

That was true until 1962 as shown by this Burn Notice, Krunoslav Draganovic was burnt by the US Army CIC for reasons of security, demands of support for his fellow Croatian terrorists, and simply not being controllable. While his activities were still monitored by American intelligence, he ceased to be a source.

Krunoslav Draganovic's Burn Notice

(*) This post is based off of reports in Draganovic's CIA Name File, Paul Hockenos' Homeland Calling, and John Loftus and Mark Aarons' Unholy Trinity.

Bring Out Your Dead- Files

Conveniently for the FBI, the Bureau does not maintain a ready list of the files slated for destruction. So, unless someone happens to luck out with a FOIA request, files slated for annihilation will probably be destroyed before the public can request them.

Update- Correct goof in title of post. Twice.

FBI FOIA Index of Records Slated for Destruction

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Jack Chick's Craziness Not FBI Worthy

Jack Chick is the producer of the crazy religious tracts that you have probably encountered in heavily traveled common areas: bus stops, public restrooms, train stations, and so forth. Given his nearly constant production of craziness, I thought it be interesting to see what American law enforcement had to say about him. So I had a FOIA request submitted to the FBI.

Interestingly enough, Jack Chick, or at least his company has not drawn the formal attention of the FBI. Now, Chick himself might have an FBI file, however, until he dies, the FBI will not release or even confirm his having a FBI file. Below is the rejection letter.

FBI FOIA Final Respose Letter Regarding Jack Chick's Company

Monday, August 9, 2010

Ernesto "Bete Noire" Guevara: The Yugoslav View of Che

Ernesto Guevara, better known as "Che", is an iconic figure. His face adorns everything from beer bottles to t-shirts and his books, decades later, still enjoy brisk sales. Even his honest opponents will admit that he was a skilled political theorist and guerrilla warrior.

However, as reported by the American State Department, Che Guevara had few friends in the Yugoslav government. In a 10/22/1965 Airgram, the Belgrade embassy reported that Che's decision to take leave of the Cubans started an attack on Che by the Yugoslav newspaper Borba, the most important Yugoslav print media of the time. The Borba's Latin American correspondent accused Che of, among other things, having personality defects and of damaging the Cuban economy, and that his dissapearance would like spawn a wave of repression. You can see a summary of the Borba's attack on the second page of the PDF below. The first page is the Airgram's cover sheet.

10/22/1965 Airgram from the US Embassy in Belgrade