Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Integration with the United States?

by Jorge Camil, La Jornada
translated by Kristin Bricker
October 17, 2008

Every year since 2005, a group of military officials, ex-directors of the CIA, and officials and ex-officials from Mexico, Canada, and the United States have secretly met in some isolated place in North America to discuss, however unbelievable it seems, the scenarios that could bring us to the integration of the three countries. Luxury hotels and exclusive retreats set the scene for a troubling "integration" that we know nothing about, because the group doesn't publish its agenda or its resolutions.

The directors of the continent's most important oil companies also attend these meetings, which feel like a SPECTRE meeting from James Bond movies (with wealthy gentlemen, luxury cars, and decorated high-ranking military officials). But we shouldn't give them more credit than they deserve, because in reality the forum is this side of the Atlantic's copy of the Bilderberg Club, a European group of aristocrats and "dignitaries," of which little is known, formed in Holand in 1954 in order to promote understanding between the United States and Western Europe after a great war, and later to influence the formation of the European Community.

The North American Forum conspirators are presided over by a triumvirate made up of Pedro Aspe Armella, ex-secretary of the Mexican Treasury under Carlos Salinas de Gortari (which explains a lot); George Shultz, ex-secretary of State and current advisor to George W. Bush and Dick Cheney (which explains even more); and Peter Loughheed, ex-prime minister of Alberta province, involved during his term in petroleum and natural gas issues.

With so many "exes" it could just be--although evidence demonstrates the opposite--a discrete group of friends who periodically get together to drink, play a game of golf or blackjack (going with the 007 theme), and remember the good old days when they had political power, because today the majority devote their time to making money.

The four annual meetings that have taken place since 2005 have occurred in Sonoma, California; Banff, Alberta; Puerto Vallarta, Jalisco; and Washington DC. Even though they're not open to the public and the forum doesn't have a website, we know the names of some participants thanks to The Council of Canadians, a diligent NGO founded in 1985 to oppose the loss of "cultural sovereignty" that occurred with the first free trade agreement between the United States and Canada.

Since 2004, the Council of Canadians has vehemently opposed greater economic integration with the United States, creating popular consciousness against the Security and Prosperity Partnership (SPP), which Vicente Fox, the most ingenious of our rulers, proudly and cheerfully signed in George W. Bush's ranch in March 2005. (Afterwards his secretary Eduardo Sojo, with even greater ingenuity, tried to sell us on the United States-imposed "agreement" as "NAFTA plus.")

In reality, the SPP is a mechanism for protecting the United States' borders and assuring that county a steady oil supply (the two central themes of its national security policy). It's an organization parallel to the forum, and both are part of a bigger strategy to integrate our national security with that of the United States, and to hand over control of our energy sources to that country. John McCain already declared on national television a few days ago, "for the United States, energy and national security are one and the same."

Should we be surprised? Not at all! Remember the invasion of Iraq? Can you imagine 1,200 war tanks and 150 Apache helicopters crossing the desert at a dizzying speeds without a drop of gas? According to Nobel Prizer winner Joseph Stiglitz, the only beneficiaries of the war in Iraq have been oil companies, because due to the conflict the cost has gone up $30 to the current astronomical price.


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