Michael Ledeen, self-proclaimed "universal fascist"
Micheal Ledeen is the probable source of the falsified intelligence on Iraq
and nuclear weapons that Dick Cheney used to get the U.S. to go to war
The intelligence, now verified as false, first surfaced in Italy and
was then passed to British and American intelligence.
KARL ROVE, MICHAEL LEDEEN SPIES PROCURED FORGED NIGER DOCUMENTS
Excerpted from Executive Intelligence Review--
The same drumbeat for "regime change" that led to war against Iraq, is
now coming from the mouths of Vice President Dick Cheney's cabal; only
now, the target is Iran. This destabilization is being run through U.S.
private foundations and think-tanks, to overthrow the government in
Iran, and run a destabilization, and/or military strike against Iran's
nuclear energy production facilities.
The pointman is Michael Ledeen, who divides his time among National Review
Online, JINSA, and the American Enterprise Institute (AEI). Ledeen is
stirring up the networks in Congress and the press, and lining up tainted
intelligence to justify war on Iran.
This is the same Michael Ledeen, who, as a consultant to the Reagan-Bush
Administration National Security Council in the mid-1980s, was a pivotal
criminal figure in the Iran-Contra fiasco, covertly peddling weapons to the
very Ayatollahs whom he is now plotting to overthrow. He is also the same
Ledeen who now calls for the United States to wage war against Iran, Syria,
Lebanon, Sudan, Libya because, he alleges, they are all "masters of
terror." Yet in the 1980s, Ledeen was one of the biggest promoters in
Washington of the so-called Afghansi mujahideen—including Osama bin
Laden—whom he touted as "freedom fighters" and "champions of the democratic
struggle against totalitarian communism."
Ledeen's operations are not merely the rantings of deeply disturbed wanna-
be Il Duce. His efforts should be understood as reflecting the immediate
intentions of the Administration neo-conservatives. His cronies, Deputy
Secretary of Defense Paul Wolfowitz and Undersecretary of Defense for
Policy Doug Feith, are the key advisors to Secretary of Defense Donald "Dr.
Ledeen, the self-proclaimed "universal fascist," has long been under
scrutiny by EIR researchers, as a man who has been in the midst of some of
the dirtiest covert intelligence operations of the past 30 years. EIR's
Special Report of April 1987, Project Democracy: The 'Parallel Government'
Behind the Iran-Contra Affair, put a spotlight on Ledeen, from which I draw
some of the brief profile published here.
Ledeen, as he wrote in his book Machiavelli on Modern Leadership: Why
Machiavelli's Iron Rules Are As Timely and Important Today as Five
Centuries Ago (New York: St. Martin's Press, 2000), is a believer in "total
war" through "creative violence." There is no such thing as peace between
nations, he maintains; peace is just an interlude between wars.
Ledeen fits the profile of a "Synarchist," or "Nazi/Communist," as those
concepts were discussed in World War II-era documents made available to EIR
by military intelligence and other sources during the 1980s (see Jeffrey
Steinberg, "Synarchism: The Fascist Roots of the Wolfowitz Cabal," EIR, May
30, 2003). Particularly relevant to this characterization is Ledeen's work
with both "Red" and "Black" terrorists in Italy, and his support, along
with Henry Kissinger, of the Propaganda Due (P-2) Freemasonic Lodge of
former Nazi collaborator Licio Gelli, which directed the NATO- related
"strategy of tension" against former Italian Prime Minister Aldo Moro.
Still Promoting Terrorists
On June 23, France's Secret Service launched a crackdown on the Iranian
Mujahadeen e-Khalq (MEK, or MKO), an anti-regime group that has been on the
U.S. State Department's list of Foreign Terrorist Organizations since 1997.
Simultaneous with recent confrontations in Iran, some 150 MEK members were
arrested at their "international headquarters" near Paris, and accused of
plotting terrorist attacks against Iranian embassies and diplomats
throughout Europe. The MEK members arrested by the French authorities were
operating under the cover of the National Council for Resistance in Iran,
the MEK's international front group. Among those arrested were MEK cult
leader Maryam Rajavi and her husband, MEK military chief Massoud Rajavi.
Following the arrests, nine members of the group set themselves on fire in
protests in Paris. One died.
Rather than applaud the French moves as part of the war against terrorism,
Sen. Sam Brownback (R-Kan.) is trying to whip up public support for the
group. In an open letter, published in the June 24 Washington Times, he
called for the "terrorist" designation to be dropped. He had earlier put
forward an amendment to a bill that would give $50 million to exile Iranian
satellite TV stations, to continue the sort of psy-ops carried out by Radio
Farda. Back on March 13, Senator Brownback had joined Rep. Tom Lantos (D-
Calif.) to call for a "regime change," in Iran, despite the fact that
moderate reformers, notably President Khatami, have become a significant
factor in the country. Brownback's website states: "It may seem that our
support is not really that important, but in truth, democracy dissidents
inside Iran tell me that it is crucial to motivate the opposition and for
them to know that there can be a strong future with the U.S. once they have
re- claimed their ancient land."
Brownback was joined in the call to arms in defense of the terrorist MEK,
by Michael Ledeen's alter-ego Daniel Pipes, who posted an op-ed on his
website, demanding not only that the MEK be removed from the State
Department terror list; but that the U.S. government adopt the MEK as a
"liberation group" to wage guerrilla insurgency against the Iranian
Ledeen joined the fray with a raving article in the June 16 National Review
Online, "The Iranian Revolution, 2003," in which he proclaims that he can
"sniff out" Iranian revolution from "the tell-tale odors coming from the
undergarments of its doomed leaders." The article cites six reasons why the
Iranian "revolution" is unstoppable now—and why President Bush must embrace
it. The article is considered a signal that the neo-con cabal inside the
Administration is going into high gear behind the scenes to get war in
Iran. Among other objectives, war on Iran would help derail the Road Map
negotiations for Israeli- Palestinian peace—a policy the President
supports, but the Administration neo-cons despise. Ledeen's 'Focus on Iran'
Ledeen and company have been putting this operation in place for some time.
In 2001, Ledeen founded the Coalition for Democracy in Iran (CDI), with a
call for regime change in that country. One of his partners in founding the
coalition was Dr. Rob Sobhani, a professor at Georgetown University and
president of Caspian Energy Consulting. Support for the CDI also comes from
the Center for Security Policy's Frank Gaffney, former Rep. Jack Kemp,
Joshua Muravchik of AEI, and former CIA director James Woolsey, who sits on
the Defense Policy Board. Woolsey has also worked for the Doug Feith/Abram
Shulsky "Office of Special Plans" in the Pentagon, which cooked the
intelligence to push through the Iraq War. One of CDI's policies, as
spelled out in the June 15 Washington Post, is to support Brownback's call
for an Iran Liberation Act, similar to the 1997 one for Iraq.
Ledeen rails against Iranian terrorism in his recent book The Terror
Masters: Why It Happened. Where We Are Now. How We'll Win. According to
Pacific News Service of May 19, he gave a speech at a JINSA policy forum on
April 30, entitled "Time to Focus on Iran—The Mother of Modern Terrorism."
Bernard Lewis Joins In
The next big push came on May 6, when Ledeen moderated a panel at a
conference at AEI, on "The Future of Iran: Mullarchy, Democracy, and the
War on Terror."
Co-sponsoring the event was the Hudson Institute—funded by the Russian and
Jewish Mafia-linked Marc Rich (whose attorneys had included Cheney's
"Scooter" Libby) and by British media baron Conrad Black—and the Foundation
for the Defense of Democracies. Opening the event was Meyrav Wurmser,
director of Middle East programs at the Hudson Institute, whose husband,
David Wurmser, is an adviser to Assistant Secretary of State John Bolton.
Her morning panel was entitled, "Iran Today—A Reality Check," and panelists
included Uri Lubrani of the Israeli Defense Ministry.
Ledeen gave the introduction for former British military intelligence
operative and Princeton Professor Emeritus Bernard Lewis, who is the
inventor of the idea of a "Clash of Civilizations," later popularized in a
book by that name by Samuel Huntington. Lewis' thesis, cloaked in phrases
of Athenian democracy, is that which President Carter's National Security
Advisor Zbigniew Brzezinski formerly called "the Arc of Crisis" and today
calls "the Zone of Instability." It calls for stopping Eurasian integration
through manipulating tribal, ethnic, and religious axioms to destroy
nation- states, beginning especially in the Middle East. Ledeen introduced
Lewis as "the reigning genius of Middle East studies everywhere."
Lewis openly called for a "revolution" in Iran, to follow the military
conquest of Iraq; he compared Iran to Napoleonic France or Stalin's Soviet
Union. Lewis said that the most important and dangerous neighbor of Iraq
was Iran, adding, "It is, I suppose, in Iran that this fear of a success of
democracy in Iraq is most strongly felt, and with the very best of
reasons." Pointing to the fact that there are more Shi'ites than Sunnis
among Islamic religious denominations in Iraq, Lewis continued, "Shi'ism is
[also] the predominant religion in Iran and the one which ... [is] invoked
by the current leadership of that country and the theocracy that was
established by the revolution in '79."
Lewis presented the pie-in-the-sky view that "democratic ideas and
democratic examples from a new Iraq might spread across the border ... and
the Muslim Shi'ite divines on both sides may feel—and one can understand
this—they feel they have to do something about it. They have to do
something to counter this American-sponsored Democratic fright.... What is
necessary from the point of view of the Iranian theocracy is that the
democratic experiment in Iraq should fail and that the consequences to
Americans there should be so awful that they would go away and not come
Also speaking at the AEI event was Senator Brownback, who called for
support for his Senate Resolution 82, and promoted his Iran Democracy
amendment. "It should be the policy of the U.S.," he said, "to seek a
genuine democratic government in Iran that will restore freedom to the
Iranian people, abandon terrorism, and live in peace and security with the
Everyone who knows the first thing about Iran realizes that any American
meddling there—such as the actions already being run through Ledeen,
Brownback, Woolsey, et al.—is a recipe for chaos and likely mass deaths.
The promotion by Ledeen of a "liberation" of Iran is, thus, a drive for the
kind of "purgative violence" that is at the heart of his "universal
fascism." Which brings us to Ledeen's variety of fascism. Ledeen's
The first important influence on Ledeen's life was George Mosse, a German
Jewish emigré, who had been on good terms with such Nazi leaders as Joseph
Goebbels and Herman Goering. Mosse was so close that Goering offered to
make his father an Aryan, and the family was permitted to leave Germany 15
minutes before the law was changed.
The Cambridge-educated Mosse, who would become Ledeen's teacher at the
University of Wisconsin, taught Ledeen that despite its "perversion" by
anti-Semitism, Fascism ought to be scientifically studied, because the
Geist (soul) of Western countries had been suffocated and could only be
revived through Fascism or Nazism. It is reported that while Ledeen was
working on his Ph.D., he was blackballed for having joined—under Mosse's
influence—a cell of the Israeli intelligence-linked movement associated
with Vladimir Ze'ev Jabotinsky, whom Israeli leader David Ben Gurion
referred to as "Vladimir Hitler."
It was through Mosse that Ledeen was introduced to later Presidential
Foreign Intelligence Advisory Board member David Abshire, who was the
founder of the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS), and
who hired Ledeen as a political intelligence operative.
But an even more important mentor to Ledeen was Renzo de Felice, an
advocate of the Jacobin Revolution in France which led to the emergence of
the first modern Fascist, Napoleon Bonaparte. De Felice did not hide his
Fascism, as he wrote in The Illuminati and Revolutionary Mysticism, 1789-
1900: "There is something in common between my Jacobins and a certain kind
of Fascism.... Fascism wanted to achieve the transformation of society and
the individual ... [toward] a new phase in the history of civilization."
After researching in Italy from 1966 to 1967, where he met scions of the
Venetian oligarchy who are "magicians" in cultural warfare, Ledeen wrote:
Universal Fascism (1972); "Italian Fascism and Youth," Journal of
Contemporary History, July 1969; "Fascist Social Policy," in The Use and
Abuse of Social Science, ed, Irving Louis Horowitz; and, among others,
Fascism, An Informal Introduction to Its Theory and Practice, by Renzo de
Felice, which includes an interview with Ledeen.
Ledeen preferred unbridled, Jacobin-style fascism, such as that of
Gabrielle D'Annunzio in the early 1900s. In his 1972 Universal Fascism,
Ledeen criticized Benito Mussolini as being too rigid: "He never had enough
confidence in the Italian people to permit them a genuine participation in
Fascism." Ledeen's Criminal Trail
Ledeen has been associated, throughout the past two decades, with some of
the most sordid criminal affairs, implicating government officials,
intelligence services, and private "synarchist" networks:
* Irangate: It is particularly ironical that Ledeen is today calling
for a "regime change" in Iran, since he had been an integral culprit in
Project Democracy's covert operations with Iran's regime during the
1980s. He worked closely with Manuchar Ghorbanifar, an Iranian living
in France, to whom he had been introduced by top Israeli political
intelligence agent David Kimchee. Ledeen brought Ghorbanifar to a
meeting on Oct. 8, 1985 with the National Security Council's Lt. Col.
Oliver North, at which was also present Israeli arms dealer Ya'acov
Nimrodi, a key player in North's "Enterprise." Ledeen had frequent
meetings with North in this regard throughout 1985, despite CIA
warnings that Ghorbanifar was not to be trusted. It was through
Ghorbanifar that 500 TOW missiles were shipped to Iran, and then 19
Hawk SAM missiles, in exchange for the release of American hostages
then being held by terrorists in Lebanon. This was the "arms for
hostages" deal that was at the heart of the Iran-Contra scandal. The
weapons that went to Iran came either directly from the U.S. military
stockpiles, or from Israel's massive arms industry, involving top
officials of the Israeli government.
Ledeen maintained that he was just involved in a "research program"
on Iran, which "by accident," turned into an "action program."
However, it is notable that throughout this period, he was involved,
by way of a firm called EATSCO, with former CIA Deputy Director for
Plans Theodor Shackley, who was another pivotal Iran-Contra figure.
* Italy's Propaganda-2 Lodge: According to innumerable sources on both
sides of the Atlantic, while working for Kissinger and Alexander Haig
at CSIS, Ledeen became a member of the Propaganda Due (P-2) Lodge,
which emerged to public light on May 20, 1981. This unmasking occurred
just seven days after the attempted assassination of Pope John Paul II
by Mehmet Ali Agca, in which P-2 was thought to be involved. The
exposure of P-2 forced the resignation of 47 Italian Army generals and
6 Navy admirals. Also named was Bruno di Fabio, a naval officer working
at NATO headquarters in Brussels, across whose desk passed the reports
of the secret services of all of NATO's members. Other prominent
Italians revealed to be members of the secret society, who were toppled
and were known to be among Ledeen's close associates, were the chief of
staff of defense, Giovanni Torrissi; the head of the coordinating body
of the secret services, Walter Pelosi; the head of military
counterintelligence (SISMI), Giuseppe Santovito; the head of the
civilian intelligence service (SISDE), Giuliano Grassini. As for P-2
Grand Master Licio Gelli himself, he was the perfect "Synarchist" or,
as Ledeen might put it, "universal Fascist," having been both a Nazi SS
liaison officer and, until at least 1956, a Soviet agent.
* The Temple Mount conspiracy: Ledeen and his wife Barbara have been
part of an "Armaggedon Project" to rebuild Solomon's Third Temple in
Jerusalem on al-Haram al-Sharif (a.k.a. "Temple Mount") which is the
third most holy site in Islam. The planned destruction of the al-Aqsa
Mosque on the Dome of the Rock would unleash unstoppable warfare in the
Middle East. Barbara Ledeen was until recently on the editorial
masthead of Biblical Archeology Review, which has played a central role
in plotting where the Third Temple should be placed, together with the
Quatuor Cornati ("Four Crowns") research
lodge of British Freemasonry.