Author Topic: The Friday Times: Wikileaks: Stratfor Affairs  (Read 1000 times)

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The Friday Times: Wikileaks: Stratfor Affairs
« on: March 02, 2012, 19:26:37 PM »
March 02, 2012 ,

Wikileaks: Stratfor Affairs

By Ali K Chishti

Wikileaks has begun publishing millions of emails from global espionage and intelligence contractor Stratfor, dating between 2004 and 2011.

"You have to take control of him. Control means financial, sexual or psychological control... This is intended to start our conversation on your next phase," CEO George Friedman told Stratfor analyst Reva Bhalla on 6 December 2011 in an email on how to exploit an Israeli intelligence informant providing information on the medical condition of the President of Venezuala Hugo Chavez.

In another email, about the 19 Pakistani brigadiers promoted to major generals, Stratfor member and journalist Kamran Bokhari says: "We have a source among these 19 and he is a rising star within the hierarchy, and is seen as having a really good shot at the top job."

In a conversation with Kamran Bokhari, Fred Burton said "mid to senior level ISI and [Pakistani military officers] with one retired [Pakistan Army] general" had "knowledge of the OBL arrangements and safe house." He said their names and ranks were unknown. "But, I get a very clear sense we know names and ranks. I also do not know if we have passed this info to the [government of Pakistan]. If I was in command, I would not pass the info to the GOP because we can't trust them. I would piece meal the names off and bury in a list of other non-related names for internal ISI traces in a non-alerting fashion, to see what the [Pakistanis] tell us. I may also trade one or two names for the captured tail rudder."

Bokhari wrote in response: "You know this reminds me of a discussion I had on NPR's Diane Rehm Show back in July '07. I was on with Peter Brookes (former deputy assistant secretary of defense for Asian and Pacific affairs in the second Bush administration) and the State Dept's current CT Coordinator, Daniel Benjamin. These two guys kept saying how ObL was in the tribal belt while I argued that he was much deeper in K-P province. God knows how many years were wasted chasing [him] in the tribal belt."

Pakistan Army strongly denied the statements. According to a news agency, its spokesman Major Gen Athar Abbas said in a statement that he rejected the "so-called leaks" and that "they are nothing but a baseless fabrication".

"These kinds of charges are not new," he said in the statement. "These leaks are actually old wine in new bottle."

The emails also contain information about the US government's attacks on Julian Assange and Wikileaks, and Stratfor's own attempt to subvert Wikileaks. There are more than 4000 emails mentioning Wikileaks alone.

The leaked information shows how private intelligence agencies works, and how they target individuals for their corporate and government clients.

For example, Stratfor monitored and analysed the online activities of Bhopal activists, including the "Yes Men" for the US chemical giant Dow Chemical. The activists seek redress for the 1984 Dow Chemical/Union Carbide gas disaster in Bhopal, India. The disaster led to thousands of deaths, and affected more than half a million people, with lasting environmental damage.

Stratfor did realise that its routine use of secret cash bribes to get information from insiders is risky. In August 2011, Stratfor CEO George Friedman confidentially told his employees: "We are retaining a law firm to create a policy for Stratfor on the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act. I don't plan to do the perp walk and I don't want anyone here doing it either."