December 22, 1989: Simultaneous with George Bush's press conference broadcast on CNN a few
December 22, 1989:
Simultaneous with George Bush's press conference broadcast
on CNN a few minutes ago, was the arrival of the first four
flag-draped coffins of Navy SEALS from the combat in Panama. The
characteristic of the press conference itself, was the President
engaged in an outpouring of word-spin hypocrisy beyond belief.
Everything was semantics, double-talk, no substance at all. The
only substance was things such as "we'll stay there as long as
necessary, etc., etc., and evasions all the way through.
The questions were aspersive, bordered upon the outright
critical. The mood in the press corps was most unpleasant. The
president seemed to be trying to hold his composure but was
obviously suffering the slings and arrows which were being thrown
at him from whatever mirror he was viewing the world in.
It's horrible. It's worse than the McNamara press conference
during the pre Tet offensive period back in the 1960s on the
subject of Vietnam. The dishonesty, the obviousness of the
hypocrisy, the extreme hypocrisy, is beyond belief. I almost felt
like crying for the United States that a president could behave
in such a manner. Totally immoral. I had images of Hitler on the
invasion of Poland. Awful. And I think undoubtedly this is an
ugly time for the United States, but I think more and more of the
American people and rapidly grasp what this is, this Dick
Thornburgh doctrine, which will bring us to the brink of all
kinds of conflicts and could even bring us to the brink of
general war. The president's hypocrisy is such that the United
States would probably have very little chance of making it
through the years ahead unless we knew that within the
institutions and within the American people there are very
effective checks and balances for coping with the
spun-out-of-control presidency which is apparently the state of
affairs right at this moment.
There's no more substance worth reporting. The substance is
in the circumstance, and not in anything the president said. It's
what he didn't say, what he refused to address, what he
avoided--the fact that he invaded Panama, that the intent was to
kill Noriega to avoid the embarrassment of bringing him to trial
where he could speak. The point was to exterminate him such that
they splattered the area around the command post with artillery
fire, heavy weapons fire, effectively like what the SS units in
Warsaw did in going after the Warsaw Ghetto, perhaps not in
intent, but when you put heavy explosive fire into a mass of
crowded wooden slum dwellings at night when people are sleeping,
there's only one thing you can say. When you invade a country,
when you shoot down its people, and say we're just chasing a
fugitive, when that man's the prime minister of the country,
who's leading forces in the Defense Forces and the Dignity
Battalions in very carefully planned evasion coordination tacts,
when the United States then begins to move into house to house
combat in a city of 1 million people, Panama City, it makes you
sick to your stomach.
This is war against the people of Panama. Nothing more,
nothing less. When we hear our leaders such as Bush speak, saying
the only problem is Noriega, I remember in 1938 of the first
broadcast I heard of the voice of Adolf Hitler prior to the
concession and later occupation of Czechoslovakia, when Hitler
said his object was not Czechoslovakia, but only Edward Benes,
the president of Czechoslovakia. I remember those words
vividly--it is only Benes, not Czechoslovakia. And I heard my
president, I suppose he's my president, George Bush, say it's not
Panama, it's only Manuel Noriega, the prime minister of the
country. This is war. As I said in a bit of wit yesterday, one
can imagine President Bush aroused before dawn by an apparition
in his bedroom. After rubbing his eyes and realizing that it
wasn't going away, the president looked at the apparition, which
bored the face of Rudolf Hess, and which said, ``President George
Bush, I come to welcome you to the club."
EIR Press Release
For Immediate Distribution
Random Killings in Poor and Black Ghettos
Dec. 21 (EIRNS)--Numerous eyewitnesses have confirmed that U.S.
troops deployed to Panama have been systematically destroying the
low-income of the Panamanian capital, where most
residents are either black or mulattos. While U.S. spokesmen
refuse to discuss widespread accounts of a large civilian death
toll, Mexican and Argentine television newscasts put the number
of civilians killed by invading U.S. forces at over two thousand.
The extent of the slaughter has also been confirmed by eyewitness
Most Panamanian civilian deaths have occurred in El
Chorrillo district, where the Panamanian Defense Forces general
headquarters were. U.S. troops pounded the entire area with heavy
artillery, mortars and rockets fired from helicopter gunships.
The ensuing fires promptly swept through the old wooden houses of
the entire neighborhood; those residents not killed were left
The same kind of random destruction occurred in San
Miguelito, another area of the city densely populated mostly by
blacks and mulattos. U.S. troops have covered the area with
rocket fire, strafed it from helicopter gunships, and bombarded
it continuously with heavy artillery. Eyewitnesses report that
the helicopters shoot randomly at any group of people, whether
they are soldiers, members of the civilian Dignity Battalions, or
innocent non-combatants. "It's a wild slaughter," said one
Shortly after noon today, Mexican television reported that
U.S. troops have entered San Miguelito and have razed entire city
blocks to rubble "because there was a sniper."
Dec. 21 (EIRNS)--GENERAL NORIEGA ADDRESSED THE PANAMANIAN
NATION. On Wednesday evening, a 53-second message by Gen. Noriega
was transmitted to the Panamanian people. It was also broadcast
on Mexico's Channels 4 and 2.
"To the Panamanian people. This is General Manuel Antonio
Noriega speaking to you. We are in our combat trenches. Regards,
and we are going to maintain the resistance. Congratulations to
the Dignity Battalions, congratulations to my comrades-in-arms
and the Defense Forces ... congratulations to the entirety of the
Panamanian people. WE MUST RESIST AND ADVANCE. Our slogan, and we
ask ... countries to assist us materially, with everything: men,
dignity, forces. WE ASK THE WORLD FOR THIS HELP. TODAY, PANAMA
NEEDS IT. OUR SLOGAN IS TO WIN OR DIE. NOT ONE STEP BACKWARD, AND
FORWARD LIKE VICTORS."
WIESBADEN, Dec. 21 (EIRNS) -- "LEADERS OF PANAMANIAN POLITICAL
ORGANIZATIONS AND GROUPS HAVE ANNOUNCED THEY ARE GOING
UNDERGROUND, to form a united resistance movement that will
organize guerrilla warfare in Panama," reported at
4:15 PM Central European Time today.
BUENOS AIRES, Dec. 21 -- COL. MOHAMED ALI SEINELDIN issued the
following statement yesterday on the United States invasion of
Panama. The statement was reported in its entirety on Argentine
television and in the written media. Among other things, the
statement represents a strong warning to president Carlos Menem,
who has yet to say a word publicly on the U.S. assault on Panama,
and who has otherwise given the green light to anti-nationalist
army factions to take punitive action against officers who have
protested military policy.
The statement reads as follows:
``With the deepest spiritual grief, I share the just
indignation and the suffering of the Defense Forces and the
people of our sister republic of Panama, martyred by aggression
against the principle of National Sovereignty, which provided the
foundation for all American states, including that of the
As an Argentine officer, I have served on a long-term
professional mission in Panama, contributing to the consolidation
of its Armed Forces in compliance with the highest goals of
Argentine foreign policy.
Just as in 1982, the Republic of Panama was in solidarity
with the cause of the Malvinas, today, our chivalry obliges us to
1.-The principle of Self-Determination of the Peoples
has been broken.
2.-Proper solidarity between two American States has
been broken through direct intervention in the internal affairs
of a nation, in violation of International and American Law.
3.-A dangerous precedent has been created which affects
4.-Serious doubts have been engendered as to whether
[the United States] sincerely intends to comply with the
Torrijos-Carter Treaty which provides for the return of full
sovereignty over the canal to Panama.
5.-Actions like this these hamper the peace efforts in
6.-Violations of this kind also rekindle the kind of
dialectical contradictions which Marxism thrives on, and
re-introduce them to countries such as ours, which seek to
overcome them by asserting the principle of the supremacy of the
Commanders, Officers and Soldiers of the Argentine Army;
Argentine and American Compatriots:
-Panama's Cause is the Malvinas' Cause.
-Yesterday, it was Hungary and Suez.
-In 1982, Afganistan and Malvinas.
-Today, it is Romania and Panama.
Let us gird our spirit and enlighten our intelligence, faced
with today's events and what the future brings, reflecting on
what the Liberator General Jose San Martin said of the
Anglo-French blockade of our land: "What I cannot conceive is
that there be Americans who, due to contemptible partisan
feelings, join with the foreigners to humiliate their Fatherland;
not even the tomb will erase such a felony.''
Dec. 21 (EIRNS)--THE PUPPET GOVERNMENT OF PANAMA APPEARED AT THE
LEGISLATIVE PALACE THIS AFTERNOON. Guillermo Endara and his small
entourage were escorted there by dozens of U.S. troops, who stood
guard all around the building and mixed themselves throughout an
audience of 200 opposition supporters. They were wearing civilian
clothes, on the request of Endara, in a vain attempt to minimize
the impression that he is a tool of the United States.
Endara announced a 6 p.m. to 6 a.m. curfew and pleaded for
Panamanian Defense Force officers to declare loyalty to his
government. Not one has done so. While he was speaking, shots
echoed through the streets outside. The Panamanians in the
vecinity were busy looting stores of the food and other items
they would not otherwise be able to get. Whereever they were in
the city, U.S. troops ignored the looters, according to witnesses
and the official "press pool" reports. With 95% of the food
stores empty, hunger is a serious possibility. Waves of women and
children refugees are now flowing into U.S. base areas, seeking
food and shelter.
In another part of the city, provisional president Francisco
Rodriguez and his cabinet continued to make governmental
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