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Behind the anti-China Olympics campaign

Gary Wilson, Workers World, March 27, 2008

Can there be any doubt that the U.S. government is behind the attacks on China targeting the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing?

The events that unfolded at the lighting of the Olympic flame March 24 in Greece were most revealing. A protest briefly disrupted the ceremonies. The news reports all said that the protest was about Tibet.

Three protesters were arrested, but then immediately released. None were Tibetan.

The three French men, it turns out, are all from a notorious right-wing organization that’s funded by the governments of France and the United States as well as some of the richest capitalists in the world. They all are employees of the outfit called Reporters Without Borders.

Based in France, the group gets funding from the U.S. government’s National Endowment for Democracy as well as the Soros Foundation and the Center for a Free Cuba. U.S. State Department Special Envoy Otto Reich is a trustee of the Center. He was also the lawyer for the Bacardi liquor dynasty that was kicked out of Cuba, along with the hated dictator Fulgencio Batista. The president of the Center is Frank Calz√≥n, a former leader of the terrorist organization Cuban American National Foundation.

Reporters Without Borders unmasked

“Reporters Without Borders Unmasked” is the title of a report by Diana Barahona on Counterpunch.org. RWB has an “obsession” with Cuba, which Barahona says can be directly traced to its funding. What may not be obvious is that the Center for a Free Cuba is a front organization for U.S. covert operations against Cuba. It is completely funded by the U.S. Agency for International Development, an agency that has long fronted for U.S. covert operations.

RWB does not just target Cuba, though Cuba has been its primary target for many years—the Cuban press generally refers to RWB as an ultra-reactionary organization with ties to counterrevolutionary terrorists. At the time of the U.S. contra war against the Sandinista government, the RWB carried on operations against Nicaragua.

Today it also has operations targeting Venezuela, Bolivia, Iran, People’s Korea, and the Palestinians, according to a report by French journalist Salim Lamrani. (“The deceit of Reporters Without Borders,” ZNet.com)

RWB was merely fulfilling its contract with the U.S. government when it carried out the little disruption of the Olympic Games opening ceremony. It got maximum publicity in the compliant U.S. media for its anti-China message.

NED: CIA of the 21st century

The shadowy hand of the National Endowment for Democracy can be found in many of the anti-China reports over the last few weeks.

The NED is a U.S. government agency that does in the post-Cold War era much of what the CIA had been doing during the U.S. counter-revolutionary operations against the Soviet Union. In fact, that’s almost exactly how its role was described by the NED’s first acting president, Allen Weinstein, who said, “A lot of what we [the NED] do today was done covertly 25 years ago by the CIA.” (Washington Post, Sept. 22, 1991)

In the U.S., little is known about the NED except for its public relations handouts. The big business-controlled press usually just repeats what’s in those handouts.

Australian writer Michael Barker, in a report last Aug. 13 published by Canada-based Global Research, detailed at that time the rise of groups aimed at breaking Tibet away from China, all of which were NED-funded.

The International Campaign for Tibet, for example, not only is funded by the NED but also has a board of directors that includes several former assistant secretaries of the U.S. State Department and former U.S. AID officials.

The Tibet Fund is another NED payee, as is the Tibet Information Network and the Tibetan Literary Society, Barker reports. Also getting funds from the NED is the Tibetan Review Trust Society, which publishes the English-only Tibetan Review magazine. Finally, Barker says, the NED also set up the Voice of Tibet short-wave radio station.

About 38 percent of the U.S. government’s nonmilitary China-related programs are allocated through the NED. According to the NED’s Web site, other recipients of its China funds include the Gu-Chu-Sum Movement of Tibet, the Tibetan Women’s Association and the Longsho Youth Movement of Tibet.

All this raises more questions than answers about what is now happening in China. Many events that are reported to be about Tibet focus on the 2008 Olympics in Beijing. Like the disruption of the Olympic torch lighting in Greece, the commentators quoted most frequently in the U.S. media are not Tibetans; most are from the U.S. and say they are speaking for the Tibetans.

The anti-Olympics campaign is clearly based in Washington, not Tibet.

In China, economic advances have been made in Tibet. The current leaders of People’s China have chosen what they call the market road to socialism. They attribute their great economic boom to this policy. But capitalist market relations by their very character breed inequality and promote divisions among peoples, breaking down the bonds of socialist solidarity. Nevertheless, China still retains strong traditions and political, social and economic institutions based on its great revolutionary past.

The question is to what extent rising inequalities may have facilitated the imperialist campaign against China now focused on Tibet.

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