U.S. antifascist to warn Vancouverites about dangerous global elites

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      A retired U.S. air force colonel is coming to Vancouver to warn Canadians about the dangers of corporate influences on governments. Lt.-Col. Bob Bowman, a former Pentagon director of advanced space programs development, told the Georgia Straight in a phone interview that he has been travelling across the U.S. for four and a half months to “wake people up”.

      “I’m endeavouring to get the people in the United States to take back our country and disempower the billionaires and the multinational corporations who are driving our foreign policy, our international-trade policy, and our military policy—and wrapping Canada into it as well,” Bowman said.

      Bowman, who oversaw the Star Wars program during the 1970s, will be speaking tomorrow at 7 p.m. at the Maritime Labour Centre (1880 Triumph Street). He said he wants to alert people to Canada’s role in advancing the agenda of those he labels the “lunatic fringe”—U.S. vice president Dick Cheney, former defense secretary Donald Rumsfeld, ex–Pentagon adviser Richard Perle, and former World Bank president Paul Wolfowitz.

      “They represent the most dangerous aspect of the global elite,” Bowman said.

      He noted that a Canadian general was second-in-command of all coalition forces early on in the Iraq war. “Canadians supply a lot of logistical support for our troops in Iraq,” Bowman said. “In addition, of course, by taking a major role in Afghanistan, the Canadian military has freed up American soldiers to play cannon fodder in Iraq.”

      Bowman, the 74-year-old national commander of the Patriots, an antifascist group, said Barack Obama would be an improvement on George W. Bush as president. However, he added that Obama will still likely be controlled by corporate interests. Bowman noted that former president Bill Clinton, also a Democrat, did the corporations’ bidding.

      One of Obama’s foreign-policy mentors is Zbigniew Brzezinski, a hawk who was Jimmy Carter’s national security adviser. Brzezinski helped arm the mujahideen fighters in Afghanistan so they could tie down the Soviet Red Army in the 1980s; some critics have claimed this is what gave Osama bin Laden and other Muslim extremists a foothold in the country, leading to the rise of the Taliban.

      Bowman predicted that if Obama wins the election in November, Brzezinski will become the national security adviser or the secretary of state. “Though he does not want a war with Iran right now and he has a more moderate policy toward the Middle East, he does want to get rid of Russia and China as competitors on the world stage,” Bowman said. “So he’s going to be playing some dangerous games as well. What I’m calling for is for the United States to return to having a government that follows the constitution, honours the truth, and serves the people.”