Nixon and Johnson were no doves; what they above all wished to avoid was not escalation, but personal responsibility for the decision to escalate. Such indecision invites parapolitics, in the form of covert operations and manipulated intelligence which effectively took the decision out of the President's hands. page 166He goes into the interlocking economic relationships among key policy makers: Pacific-oriented oil companies, PanAm, Air America, intelligence personnel, Nixon, the China lobby, opium, and organized crime. Nixon seems to have known more about the covert military operations than any of the recent presidents since FDR. (FDR secretly organized the Flying Tigers and exempted it from the neutrality provisions of the US code.) Even as Vice President, Nixon knew more about covert operations than President Eisenhower.
The opium-base economy of Laos is (1970) still being protected by a coalition of opium-growing CIA mercenaries, Air America planes, and their troops. page 212
The fact remains that the secret practices of the intelligence community have institutionalized and made permanently viable the flagrant discrepancy between American democratic ideals and American imperialistic practice. page 216
Year Read: 1985
Libertarian Essays by Roy Halliday
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