9/12/2001 – THE DAYS AFTER THE UNTHINKABLE HAPPENED – Part 8 (A serial book excerpt)
The atmosphere in the meeting room was the tensest of any since 911. It was also the most secretive. Cheney had watched closely the actions of his secret service men and had made a special section within them who would answer directly to him and not to their chief.
They had autonomy from the rest of the secret Service. They now guarded, under a form of secrecy never seen before in the White House, a ‘Green Zone’ within the periphery of the meeting. What was unusual was that other politicians were excluded and to be kept in the dark about the assembly.
The other unusuality was that the majority of those in the group were from outside the political sphere, CEO’s, industry representatives and other non-coms were ushered into a meeting that would prove to be as historic as The Yalta Conference- were historians ever to learn of it.
Cheney came in late. All rose in proper respect. But he would not be the main one speaking. He was not the top dog here. The top dog was not even there.
The honor of being the prime speaker would be Marshall Koheso, representative for the Unalgo Petroleum Consortium. He would be speaking on behalf of the President of the Corporation, Johnathon Meyers.
Mr. Meyers had deemed it wise not to be there himself. Even with the tight security he feared that a leak of his presence there would be disastrous both to him and to the company.
So, thereby, Mr. Koheso being little more than an intelligent mouthpiece, got to be King For A Day at the conference.
Mr. Koheso walked up to the podium. He wasted no time in getting to the point. “So, gentlemen, welcome! We have a lot to go over and it would be wise to keep our time here to a minimum and to get as much said in done in as few words as possible.
I am hoping that everyone has their cell phones turned off and, I most sincerely hope that no one is wearing a bug because we are monitoring for such. I don’t need to mention the embarrassment that would occur if we were to interrupt this meeting because someone was wearing one.”
He stopped for a moment and gave a sharp eyed look around the room for anyone looking uncomfortable with that announcement.
“We might as well jump into it. World oil production had reached its peak. The chance of finding more large oil deposits is diminishing. China and India are moving up in their energy usage.
My friends, the world is only so big. There is only so much oil. We need to grab our share while we can. Now we have our chance”
”Ten years ago we engaged in a war to free Kuwait from Saddam Hussein’s domination. We succeeded. And by succeeding we gained the trust and a good percentage of the oil reserves of Kuwait and Saudi Arabia. But we made a bad mistake. We should have taken Iraq as well.
We had them by the tail and we intentionally let go. With oil supplies dwindling it would have been logical to keep Iraq with a quarter of the world’s oil supplies under our thumb.”
“Now the advent of the Afghanistan war has given us another opportunity. Iraq is right next door. This is a golden chance. Everyone thinks the worst of Saddam Hussein. It wouldn’t take much to make it look like he was involved in 911.
Not much at all. If we were to prove convincingly that he was, then we would have an excuse to march back to Baghdad. And it would be the same cake walk that it was the last time.”
“We have been conferring confidentially with military and financial experts about the possibility of launching a strike on Iraq. Most agree that it is a feasible undertaking.
If it were to be done Blitzkrieg style with little announcement, rapid deployment and little interference from outside powers, we could have command of the Iraqi oilfields in a week.”
A murmur of comment sounded throughout the room.
“What would seal the initiative would be if we were to say that Hussein had the ability to launch weapons against us or Europe and make it stick. That would be the clincher.” He waited to let this sink in.
“If we could convince Americans that Iraq could blow them out of their pajamas in the dead of night, Iraq would be ours for the taking. If we could convince at least a good portion of Europeans the same, so much the sweeter.”
He stopped and looked around the room, gauging how they were taking this. He saw reflective, pensive and thoughtful faces, all mulling over what he had just introduced.
He sensed a hesitancy, an unwillingness to go this far. He would have to hammer the last nail in the coffin.
“It is only a matter of time before the oil starts to run short. Do we want the Chinese to get the majority of it? Think of how much they would squander if their 2 billion all got autos. India has one billion people. Between the two of them that is 9 times as many people as are in the United States.“
He let this sink in. “I will put it bluntly gentlemen- if we are to survive we need Iraq! If we take Iraq now, we will thrive at least through our generation.”
He let the hammer fall. “And lets be honest folks, all we really care about it our generation. What happens after we are gone is someone elses problem.”
He went on at length to explain the inaccuracies of the situation to a rapt audience.
Spirited discussion broke out all around him. Some of it was fearful, some aggressive.
While the chatter was going on and the attention was scattered, Koheso carefully worked his way to the edge of the podium, then engaged in some fake dialogue with a colleague at the end of it.
A couple of secret service men in plainclothes surrounded him appearing to engage in conversation, then, when no one was looking, spirited him away through a false panel out of sight of the audience.
Two of the normally garbed secret service agents escorted him up the hidden walkway and out an unmarked exit, making sure he made it to his car unmolested and out the gate.
His disappearance was a major psychological factor of the presentation. His partner Lance Jainson would be left to give a set of predetermined answers to whoever asked. And the answers were all oriented towards war in Iraq.
NEWS FLASH! – “The Pentagon maintains that Iraq has weapons that could cause massive destruction against the United States, Europe and Israel. Officials say that satellite photos have given officials enough evidence to support the theory that the country has missiles with the capability of reaching the United States.
“It is also believed that Saddam Hussein has received the instructions needed to build an atomic warhead from Palestinian agents within his country. Top military Generals are saying that we might need a greater troop buildup in Afghanistan in case things start to get difficult in Iraq.”
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To Be Continued…
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The complete book of ‘9/12/2001’ is available from lulu.com.