Myanmar’s ‘Buddhist Bin Laden’

Wirathu Buddhist Bin Laden Myanmar
Wirathu, the ‘Buddhist Bin Laden’ of Myanmar.

Sharing this because I’ve heard it said that all of the world’s religions have some history of violence — except Buddhism.

Well, leave it to people.

Religion is a vehicle, like a car is a vehicle. The vehicle of religion is intended to help people arrive at a certain destination. But, like a car, the vehicle of religion can be misused.

Meet Wirathu, Myanmar’s ‘Buddhist Bin Laden,’ as he is called.

From The Star online:

Barbet Schroeder spent months with Ugandan dictator Idi Amin at the height of his power, when corpses would wash up every morning on the shores of Lake Victoria and Kampala was rife with rumours that he was eating his opponents.

But in his decades of documenting evil, the veteran Swiss filmmaker says he has never been as scared by anyone as he was by a Myanmar Buddhist monk named Wirathu.

“I am afraid to call him Wirathu because even his name scares me,” the highly acclaimed director told AFP. “I just call him W.”

“The Venerable W”, his chilling portrait of the monk who has been accused of preaching hate and inciting attacks on Myanmar’s Muslim Rohingya minority, has been hailed by critics at the Cannes film festival as a “stirring documentary about ethnic cleansing in action”.

What dismays Schroeder is that Wirathu, whom Time magazine dubbed “The face of Buddhist terror” in a 2013 cover, is utterly unfazed by the chaos and suffering he has unleashed.

More here.

Senate report: Bin Laden was ‘Within Our Grasp’ in December 2001

From the Associated Press:

Osama bin Laden was unquestionably within reach of U.S. troops in the mountains of Tora Bora when American military leaders made the crucial and costly decision not to pursue the terrorist leader with massive force, a Senate report says.

The report asserts that the failure to kill or capture bin Laden at his most vulnerable in December 2001 has had lasting consequences beyond the fate of one man. Bin Laden’s escape laid the foundation for today’s reinvigorated Afghan insurgency and inflamed the internal strife now endangering Pakistan, it says.

Staff members for the Senate Foreign Relations Committee’s Democratic majority prepared the report at the request of the chairman,Sen. John Kerry, as President Barack Obama prepares to boost U.S. troops in Afghanistan.

The Massachusetts senator and 2004 Democratic presidential candidate has long argued the Bush administration missed a chance to get the al-Qaida leader and top deputies when they were holed up in the forbidding mountainous area of eastern Afghanistan only three months after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.

Although limited to a review of military operations eight years old, the report could also be read as a cautionary note for those resisting an increased troop presence there now.

More pointedly, it seeks to affix a measure of blame for the state of the war today on military leaders underformer president George W. Bush, specifically Donald H. Rumsfeld as defense secretary and his top military commander, Tommy Franks.

Here’s to what might have been.

And so it goes.

FBI’s Edmonds: Bin Laden Worked for U.S. Until 9/11

What a bombshell.

From The Brad Blog:

During my recent interview with FBI translator-turned-whistleblower Sibel Edmonds on the Mike Malloy Show, a caller had asked her opinion on whether she believed 9/11 to have been “an inside job.”

Edmonds replied by first specifying “As I have done for the past 7 or 8 years, I have basically stuck with what I know, first-hand, directly, my own knowledge, based on my own experience, based on what I obtained, which is not a lot, but it is extremely important.”

After explaining the difference between what she does and doesn’t know first hand, she went on to explain: “I have information about things that our government has lied to us about. I know. For example, to say that since the fall of the Soviet Union we ceased all of our intimate relationship with Bin Laden and the Taliban – those things can be proven as lies, very easily, based on the information they classified in my case, because we did carry very intimate relationship with these people, and it involves Central Asia, all the way up to September 11.” …

Her complete response, pulled from the lengthy interview (full, commercial-free audio here) has been transcribed by Luke Ryland, perhaps the world’s foremost expert in all things Sibel Edmonds related.

From Luke Ryland on the Daily Kos:

Former FBI translator Sibel Edmonds dropped a bombshell on the Mike Malloy radio show, guest-hosted by Brad Friedman (audiopartial transcript).

In the interview, Sibel says that the US maintained ‘intimate relations’ with Bin Laden, and the Taliban, “all the way until that day of September 11.”

These ‘intimate relations’ included using Bin Laden for ‘operations’ in Central Asia, including Xinjiang, China. These ‘operations’ involved using al Qaeda and the Taliban in the same manner “as we did during the Afghan and Soviet conflict,” that is, fighting ‘enemies’ via proxies.

Luke’s summary:

The bombshell here is obviously that certain people in the US were using Bin Laden up to September 11, 2001.

It is important to understand why: the US outsourced terror operations to al Qaeda and the Taliban for many years, promoting the Islamization of Central Asia in an attempt to personally profit off military sales as well as oil and gas concessions.

The silence by the US government on these matters is deafening. So, too, is the blowback.

Puts an entirely different spin on Bush ignoring that PDB.

What did George W. Bush know, and when did he know it?