Machiavelli sheds light on Iraq crises, Pollard Case
Eugene Narrett, PhD - Metrowest Daily News, Boston - November 19, 1998
(May be reprinted with appropriate accrediataion)
The essay "Morals of a Prince" made the name Niccolo Machiavelli
(1469-1527)a synonym for cynical cunning. Four hundred years before the
20th century applied Nietzsche's ideas on the "transvaluation of
values," the aristocratic Florentine inverted the meaning of moral
contrasts like mercy and cruelty, stinginess and generosity, honesty and
deceit. Although Machiavelli may have meant his work as a satire, its
paean to manipulative self-interest still
illumines the methods of rulers, as in the ongoing imbroglio regarding
Mr. Clinton has been making brave speeches again, demanding Saddam
comply with UN inspectors and fretting about "the credibility of the
United Nations Security Council." In February he was downright
apocalyptic. "What if Saddam fails to comply and we fail to act, or take
some ambiguous third route? He will rebuild his arsenal and someday, I
guarantee you, he'll use it." Clinton
pledged to apply military force if Saddam barred UNSCOM inspectors.
Macchiavelli observed that people "are so simple of mind and so
dominated by their immediate needs that a deceitful ruler will always
find many to deceive." Bill Clinton has made a career of this situation.
On August 6, Saddam rebuffed inspectors led by Major Scott Ritter. At
Clinton's direction, inspections were postponed and then canceled. When
Ritter told the press that his team had cracked Saddam's weapon shuttle
system only to be hamstrung from above, Clinton had the CIA smear the
Major, and the FBI threaten to indict him.
The credibility of the UN indeed has been destroyed by Kofi Anan's
pampering of Saddam Hussein and by President's Clinton's betrayal of the
inspectors upon whose behalf he piously declaims at press conferences,
pursuing the "ambiguous third route" he himself decried in February.
Billions of tax dollars are spent on peripatetic fleet maneuvers and
paltry missile strikes. As for America's credibility in the '90s, Iraq's
Vice President commented, "we do not fear the threats of the United
States because it has been threatening us for six
The interminable bad joke of the Executive Branch's Iraq policy
issue that surfaced at the close of the Wye summit. At that time the
press echoed administration claims that the proposed release of Jonathan
Pollard almost torpedoed the deal. This fraud was a textbook
illustration of Macchiavelli's words on gullibility and deceit.
Both Palestinian and Israeli sources since have confirmed that it
Clinton himself who early in the talks suggested Pollard's release. The
was dropped until the wee hours on Friday, October 23 when Arafat
Pollard's release in exchange for Israel releasing 750 terrorists and
extradition of Gazi Jabali, head of the PA 'police' and organizer of
terrorist attacks. Netanyahu agreed but later that morning Clinton
when the CIA vetoed the deal. Therein hangs a tale.
Israel's 1981 bombing of Saddam's nuclear reactor at Osirak
then CIA chief, Admiral Bobby Ray Inman who with George Schultz and
Weinberger told the Senate that Israel had harmed "sophisticated efforts
build an important relationship with Saddam." Although Pollard had
nothing to do the Osirak bombing, former Defense Secretary Weinberger
carried this grudge against Israel (as well as angry feelings about his
mixed religious background) with him when he intervened in the Pollard
trial with a secret memo falsely alleging treason and insisting that
Pollard must never be released.
Boston University Professor of International Relations, Angelo
served on the Senate Intelligence Committee in the 1980s has written
that Pollard "was punished for the worst possible sin in Washington,
before his time. Our policy of aiding Iraq was disastrous. The authors
policy were Inman, Schultz and Weinberger" who oversaw "providing Iraq
with US weapons and intelligence."
Professor Codevilla made clear that the information on Iraqi
Pollard gave Israel had nothing to do with US security. Indeed, it was
routinely shared and portions of it had been withheld only by Inman's
Yet Pollard is still in jail after
13 years, still being slandered
committed by Aldrich Ames. By contrast, Abdelkader Helmy an Egyptian who
stole American warhead technology leading to the deaths of several dozen
America soldiers during the Gulf War was deported without a prison
"Those who craftily manipulate the minds of men in the end win out
those who act honestly," Machiavelli wrote, as if previewing our
"The prince must be a great liar and a hypocrite." While Mr. Clinton
a compassionate statesman, Jonathan Pollard rots in jail and Iraq's
opposition is infiltrated and betrayed by the CIA. Thus the Florentine's
assessment of politics and human weakness is verified. "Everyone sees
what you seem to be," he wrote, "few know what you really are, and those
few dare not take a stand against general opinion, supported by the
majesty of [government] power."
So it goes. Clinton's Iraq policy veers like a drunk on an icy
while 'a herd of independent minds' analyze the staggering. The mad lead
blind as made-for-the-media circuses stupefy an amnesiac public.
Eugene Narrett, PhD is a columnist and teaches writing & Literature at
See Also: The Admiral Bobby Ray Inman Page