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Pope Bashing Media Blitz "Proves All Is Well"

Politics / Religion Mar 16, 2013 - 06:44 PM GMT

By: Andrew_McKillop


Of course soaring equity indices are nothing to do with the real economy - only the naive would (or could) imagine the opposite. However, one direct spinoff is Pope bashing. The new Pope's primal error was to almost say outright that mass poverty can be linked with the greedy rich and their casino economy. Rapidly, Pope bashing has become "de rigeur" in official government friendly media.

The new Pope Francis is already "troublesome for the rich", and their fellow riders. That is the indolent, the lucky. the greedy and the criminal. The Bernie Madoff and Charles Ponzi "emergent layer" of society, floating on top. Those who made it during the last "window of opportunity" for the bubble economy - The Losers don't count. The 80-percent-plus of the population who lost out from the so-called Neoliberal Revolution over the last 30 years.

Today they want a radical change and possibly revenge. The new Pope seems to be on their side.

Since the election of Pope Francis, last week, the Vatican has already been forced to formally defend him against accusations that, in the 1970s and 1980s during the so-called Argentinian Dirty War., in his home country, he knew about serious human rights abuses but failed to do anything effective to halt them. In the USA, Henry Kissinger is on record as actively supporting the criminal junta in Aregentina. The government friendly media makes a point of not explaining how the generals grabbed power.

The Reverend Federico Lombardi, the Vatican spokesman, said on Friday 15 March that there had "never been a credible accusation against him" relating to the periods in the 1970s and 1980s when the new Pope was the leading cleric of the Jesuit order in Argentina.

Father Lombardi in fact added in a statement at a news conference that: "There have been many declarations of how much he did for so many people to protect them from the military dictatorship". He did not add the polemical questions: Why were the general protected by Western leaders? Did the West carry out a just war against either Afghanistan or Iraq, in 2001 and 2003?  Of course these were great wars and were also good for the weapons industry, enriching the idle, the greedy, the lucky and the criminal - in the West.

The radicalisation of the Vatican - an accredited member state of the UN despite its tiny size - moves forward. Vatican spokesmen have been very clear, on the subject of Western media attempts to "trash the Pope". For example this official statement by Vatican spokesmen:

"The accusations (against Pope Francis) belong to the use of a historical-social analysis of facts for many years by the anti-clerical left to attack the church, and must be rejected decisively." To this we can certainly add the anti-Pope new right.

Pope Francis, the former Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio of Buenos Aires, was elected by fellow cardinals on Wednesday and much of his behavior since then has seemed to indicate a shift of tone at the Vatican, to a more humble and frugal approach.Today and henceforth the Vatican does not approve of "inevitable poverty" and the so-called "inevitable" triumph of the upper-layer of society which predates and spoliates the poor. In fact, this could be called "ecological" and Social Darwinist: the upper levels of society need a huge pyramid of poverty to predate. Bit as ecological analysis of ecosystem trophic levels shows, the uppermost predatory level concentrates toxins from all the levels below, the losers it feeds off. Pesticides and heavy metals are really bad for predatory parasites - they concentrate the poison. They wanted it so badly but they also die off !

When he addressed cardinals on Friday 15 March, pope Francis spoke frequently without notes, addressing them as "Brother Cardinals" rather than the more usual "Lord Cardinals". The Vatican press office highlighted other deliberate shows of modesty and lack of formality since the election of the new Pope Francis.

But the question of his past has been kept close below the surface. The Argentine's "neoliberal revolution", backed by Henry Kissinger concerns a conflict in which as many as 30 000 people were "disappeared", tortured, and killed by criminal fascist killers who overthrew an elected government.

At the news conference on Friday, Father Lombardi repeated assertions by a prominent human rights campaigner that there had been "no compromise by Cardinal Bergoglio with the dictatorship", but the debate has simmered inside Argentina, before becoming worldwide. Journalists and commentators in all business-friendly media have publishing articles, comments and rush-to-print books which contradict Cardinal Bergoglio's account of his actions.

The same rush by Herd Journalists is of course missing when it councerns asking how the generals won and the proven aid they given by Nixon and Kissinger, then elected officials of the USA. Helping fascist rebels to overthrew a democratically elected government, and providing weapons and diplomatic cover to a police state using torture and assassination is not "consumer friendly news". Above all the Argentine criminal junta protected Business as Usual, social inequality and misery for the poor!

The church denied for years any involvement between Pope Francis and the dictatorship. In 2010 the future Pope however admitted that he had secretly met General Jorge Videla, the former head of the military junta along with Admiral Emilio Massera, the commander of the Argentine navy. Among his requests for mercy, he asked for the release of two kidnapped French nuns, Alice Domon and Leonie Renéepriests. Making things a lot more complex, Domon was a member of the group directed by Father Ismael Calcagno, first cousin of General Jorge Videla, the dictator in power at the time of their kidnapping and murder, in Dec 1977.

Also, French journalist Marie-Monique Robin has published a copy of a French Ministry of Foreign Affairs document proving that a 1959 agreement between Paris and Buenos Aires initiated a "permanent French military mission" in Argentina, formed of veterans who fought in the Algerian War, and located in the offices of the chief of staff of the Argentine Armed Forces. Her research showed how Valery Giscard d'Estaing's government secretly collaborated with Videla's junta in Argentina and with Augusto Pinochet's regime in Chile, with a French-led massive extension of intelligence services and the use of torture as the primary weapon of anti-subversive "modern warfare".

French media, today, has been especially critical of the new Pope - the man who knows too much.

In a long interview published by an Argentine newspaper in 2010, Pope Francis - then still a cardinal - said he had helped hide people being sought for arrest, torture or to "make them disappear" by the military junta because of their political views. He helped others flee from Argentina, and lobbied the country's military rulers directly, on many occasions, for the release and protection of other "enemies of the fascist state". The state installed with direct military assistance from Nixon and Kissinger, using torture methods supplied by the French.

Renewed media discussion of Papal views on human rights intruded the same day that Pope Francis had offered warm praise to his predecessor, Benedict XVI, saying that during nearly eight years as leader of the world's 1.2 billion Roman Catholics, Benedict: "lit a flame in the depths of our hearts."

The new Pope can in no way engage in polemics, nor in politics. He is obliged to look higher and further, and on Friday 15 March said:  "Let us not give in to pessimism, to that bitterness that the devil offers us every day". He made a point of avoiding any allusion to the myriad of challenges facing the Vatican from a series of sexual abuse and financial scandals, and political influence trading in Italy that literally bedevilled much of Benedict XVI's papacy.

According to the officials, Francis frequently extemporizes, making it more difficult for the papal press office to deliver texts of his addresses, like Friday's homily.

Francis is the first non-European pope for over 1 200 years and the first from the Americas. In a further display of his embrace of the poor, Vatican officials said on Friday that Francis had urged bishops and the faithful in Argentina not to spend money on a long journey to attend his formal inauguration, but to use that money to help the poor.

Vatican officials said the new pope planned at some stage to visit Benedict at the papal summer retreat at Castel Gandolfo outside Rome, where he is living until he has an apartment at the Vatican. In his retirement, Benedict has said he plans to live "hidden to the world."

Last month, Benedict became the first pope in six centuries to resign, citing failing bodily powers and old age, precipitating a scramble for the succession in which Francis was not seen as being among the front-runners. The views of Francis will however have a powerful impact in a world of increasing poverty and massive economic injustice. To the media's attacks on his age, he said: "Let us give (our) wisdom to young people; like good wine, it becomes better with age. Let us give to young people the wisdom of life."

By Andrew McKillop


Former chief policy analyst, Division A Policy, DG XVII Energy, European Commission. Andrew McKillop Biographic Highlights

Co-author 'The Doomsday Machine', Palgrave Macmillan USA, 2012

Andrew McKillop has more than 30 years experience in the energy, economic and finance domains. Trained at London UK’s University College, he has had specially long experience of energy policy, project administration and the development and financing of alternate energy. This included his role of in-house Expert on Policy and Programming at the DG XVII-Energy of the European Commission, Director of Information of the OAPEC technology transfer subsidiary, AREC and researcher for UN agencies including the ILO.

© 2013 Copyright Andrew McKillop - All Rights Reserved Disclaimer: The above is a matter of opinion provided for general information purposes only and is not intended as investment advice. Information and analysis above are derived from sources and utilising methods believed to be reliable, but we cannot accept responsibility for any losses you may incur as a result of this analysis. Individuals should consult with their personal financial advisor.

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