There’s a reason the History Channel has produced hundreds of documentaries about Hitler but only a few about Dwight D. Eisenhower. Bad guys (and gals) are eternally fascinating. Behind the Bastards dives in past the Cliffs Notes of the worst humans in history and exposes the bizarre realities of their lives. Listeners will learn about the young adult novels that helped Hitler form his monstrous ideology, the founder of Blackwater’s insane quest to build his own Air Force, the bizarre lives of the sons and daughters of dictators and Saddam Hussein’s side career as a trashy romance novelist.
Thu, 31 Mar 2022 10:00
Robert is joined again by Gareth Reynolds & Dave Anthony (The Dollop) for the sixth and final part of our epic six part series on Henry Kissinger.
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Now if you go to akpress.org you can find after the revolution, just Google a kpreps.org. After the revolution you'll find a list of participating indie bookstores selling my book. And if you pre-order now from either of these independent bookstores or from a K press, you'll get a custom signed copy of the book, which I think is pretty cool. You can also pre-order it in physical or in Kindle form from Amazon or pretty much wherever books are sold. So please Google AK Press after the revolution or find an indie bookstore in your area and. Reorder it, you'll get a signed copy and you'll make me very happy. So this is episode 6, you know, we're what, 8 hours into talking about Mr Kissinger and yeah, we really meet me from 8 hours ago, buddy. It's like when Bill and Ted meet each other halfway through and they don't know their journey they're about to go upon. Yeah buddy, buckle up. So the things, the thing that Kissinger gets the most credit for that we haven't mentioned, we've we've talked about a bunch of things that he gets credit for is bringing peace to the Middle East. He does get credit for being that guy. Obviously he did not. Do that. But he did play a significant role in stopping what had been a decades long cycle of wars between Israel and the Arab nations around it. Now to call that bringing peace would be ignoring a tremendous amount of ongoing violence against the Palestinian people. But Kissinger did help ensure like, you know, there were all these different, like everyone would invade, yada yada yada. There'd be a bunch of fighting that doesn't really happen anymore. And Kissinger is part of why that doesn't happen anymore. The gist of it is that on October 6th, 1973, on Yom Kippur. Egypt and Syria launched a coordinated assault on Israel that, for a time threatened the state's very existence. Kissinger had not spent much of his time working on Mideast related stuff up to this point. This was partly because Nixon thought having a Jewish man negotiate with Arab countries would be a bad idea. It was also because Kissinger was kind of buried in Vietnam stuff, right? But by October of 73, negotiations with Hanoi had been concluded, U.S. forces had stepped back from an active role, and Kissinger had been awarded a Nobel Peace Prize with his Vietnamese. Counterpart? Lee docto. Yes, absolutely. What now? I can't. There's no counter argument. Absolutely no. He he nailed it. I mean now the Nobel Peace Prize really doesn't. I mean, they must hit sometimes. I'm just familiar with a lot of the nose, though it seems mostly to be misses in my experience. Like when he got that, that's called the No. Yeah. And you know who felt that way? Gareth Lee Duchateau, who was also awarded the Nobel Peace Prize with Kissinger. I don't mind. I don't want mine. Yeah, he he literally was like, no, I'm not going to take it. The war isn't over yet. Like, all he's done, all we've done is negotiate. the US no longer murdering people on the scale they had been and he's in charge of it. Yeah. And specifically he was angry because right before the Armistice was signed in order to like, try and force Hanoi to agree on some points Kissinger orchestrated. Massive nighttime bombing campaign on Christmas of Hanoi. They didn't bomb on Christmas Day, just the day before and a bunch of the days after, but it gets called the Christmas bombing we're worried will hit Santa. I don't want that jolly blood on my hands. So the lead doctor was like, I don't, I'm not gonna take it award for peace with this guy. Yeah, **** it. Yeah. So Kissinger accepted it alone. Oh my God. He's such a cool dude. He's such a cool dude. Ohh wow, more credit for me. I can't believe I'm the only one who got it this year. I must be really good at this stuff. So yeah, he's like the Conway Kanye of the Nobel Peace Prize. Yeah, right, right, right. Sorry, you did great, but Kissinger had the best war of all time, of all time. It would have been really funny if Henry Kissinger had, like, shoved Taylor Swift off stage just like take. Yeah, you had the Great War, you did great with peace. But come on, they're talking about the goat here, baby. So by October of 73, Kissinger is free and clear and ready to get it on in the Middle East. And this actually went better than you might think. Weirdly enough, Henry Kissinger was probably one of the fairest negotiators the United States ever sent into that conflict. In fact, he was more or less in constant tension with Israel because he would do stuff like try to halt arms shipments there, like during the Ampor war, right? Israel's on a back foot. They're in real danger of being overrun. They want US weapons and like. US arms and a bunch more F4 phantom planes, and Nixon agrees to give them to him. But Kissinger's like we're not giving them anything until they can arrange for commercial flights to ship the weapons to them. Because I don't want, I'm trying to negotiate with with Syria and Egypt, and if they see U.S. military aircraft landing in Jerusalem to give the Israelis weapons, that's going to **** ** my negotiations. So, like, he's actually really unpopular with a lot of folks in Israel because he does stuff like this, and in fact Kissinger's and obviously. Like every US negotiator in this conflict, Kissinger is more on Israel's side than anyone, but he's, it's probably fair to say he's less on Israel's side than any other negotiator we ever put in there, which is like, weird, fascinating. Yeah. Sounds like he's the most progressive because, I mean, like, obviously we had we could give a ****. Now, you know, he's not a Zionist. For one thing, he doesn't have, like, there's not a, you know, he's Jewish, but he's not really that like there. There is some amount of, like as a Holocaust survivor, he believes strongly that, like, you know, Israel needs to exist. So he does have that. Going for him again, he eventually agrees to ship them weapons on US planes after it becomes enough of an issue, but he like still is that moment of principles. The fact that there's like any of that at all is weird, yeah. He probably had like a little Nixon on his shoulder who was like, I know you're just gonna be a Jew about this. He was like, no, I will not care, not devil Nixon. It's weird how plugged in you are to how Nixon reacts to everything. Exactly what does the spirit president? Yeah. Ohh man. So Kissinger's best relationship in the Middle East wound up being with Anwar Sadat, the president of Egypt. The two, like, were legitimately good buddies. They would kiss each other on the cheek like they liked each other. They found the one. Meanwhile, Kissinger and golden my ear, which was the leader of Israel, had a really contentious relationship. At the end of the day. Kissinger again would always side with Israel on existential issues, but he wound up giving them a lot more **** than you might expect. Now the fact that the US eventually sends in arms turns the war around for Israel which allows them their forces to deal decisive blows to Egyptian and Syrian militaries. But once Israel was out of kind of the the period of most risk for them as a state Kissinger. Starts to push back on them even harder. He's particularly enraged at the fact that they kept attacking while he was trying to negotiate a ceasefire. And again, his main concern here, this is not because he just, like, wants to stop the bloodletting. It's really important to him to negotiate a peace and it be seen as Henry Kissinger brought peace to the Middle East, right? So he's ****** that they're ******* over his negotiations. Yeah, and he cares more about his reputation than he does about Israeli military success. They're forgetting about the people of Kissinger. Yes, exactly. The real chosen people. Yeah. So when Israeli forces surround the Egyptian Third Army and encircle it, violating a ceasefire, Kissinger is livid and he he's particularly angry. We're not getting as much into this aspect of his beliefs, but his whole thing in this. The reason he organized like as we talked about in our China episode and this like 3 way diplomacy thing that he deals with, with China and the Soviet Union, he wants what's called a balance of power. That's his whole thing. He's he gets a credit, he's a he's a big cold warrior. Obviously he overthrows a lot of communist governments. But he's not one of these people who thinks we can eliminate communism. Instead, he really wants, like, this balance of power. And he wants a balance of power in the Middle East between Israel and her neighbors, too. And he's livid about, in part, that they violated the ceasefire. But he's also worried that, like, well, if the Israelis wipe out the Egyptian Third Army, that's going to mean Egypt is humiliated. And if they're humiliated, Sadat can't actually make peace, and there's going to be another war. And I want to try and stop the next war, which is getting so hard right now. Yeah, we're so good for him. But he is like. Broadly on the right side of this, right. Yeah. Yeah. Over the course of several chaotic days, he makes numerous trips between each of the belligerent nations in this war, negotiating with their heads of state. And one of his primary tactics is to mock whoever he just been talking to when he's in front of the next person. So, like, yeah, how did he miss that guy? And MC yeah, when he's so when he's dealing with Hafez Assad or Anwar Sadat, this means talking **** about the Israelis and often Jewish people. In general, to get on their good side. So when Israel violates that ceasefire, he is heard to complain at a meeting quote. If it were not for the accident of my birth, I would be anti-Semitic. Oh my God. Wow. What? On another occasion he says, quote, and I need to remind you, this is a Holocaust survivor saying this, any people who have been persecuted for 2000 years must be doing something wrong. Jesus Christ. He ******* said that. Wow. Holy **** man. We are just, we are just such ******* ********. I'm just seeing this, guys, this is I'm on fire. I'm just. Nothing right now. This is some good thing, like someone write this down. No, don't worry, I'm wiretapping myself. He kills at the clubs in Damascus. Yeah, ohh my gosh. And yet he is actually like really popular with a not all, because there are other. We have quotes from other like people who are like particularly other Egyptian military leaders under Sadat who were like, well, Sadat's fallen for it. He's obviously just saying whatever he thinks will make us like him. Like he doesn't. Clearly he can't believe this ****. He's just trying to like there are people who see through it, but he. He's able to trick the folks who matter, which in this case are Sadat and Hafez, right? So all that aside, this. Is, again, broadly speaking, the one where Kissinger does the most actual good. But it's worth noting that even when he's on the right side of things, I think negotiating an end to a war is generally the right thing to do when there's a war. But even when he's on the right side of things, his ego plays a massive and often toxic role in how everything shakes out. See, while all this is going on, Nixon is barreling towards them. Impeachment. And a big part of why he's constantly over there. Like, while all of the big milestones in the Watergate case hit, like when when Nixon is, like, ordering the cover up and **** and doing the things that will get him impeached, Kissinger's always away. Like, he's like, very studiously as soon as the story breaks, like, I need to be overseas as much as ******* possible. So is it possible he's competently trying to negotiate Middle East peace because he's trying to save his own *** and doesn't want that is literally what's going on? Because he is. He's not a dumb man. He sees that Nixon is ****** and it doesn't. He's like, well, I can't just be doing nothing. Yes. And why don't I actually try to make this work? I guess I'm in a lot of trouble domestically. Yeah. I mean, that's it. Like he wants to cause part of it is he doesn't want to be near Nixon because Nixon's toxic. And part of it is like, well, if if the last thing everyone remembers about Henry, well, Nixon is going down is that he ended war in the Middle East. I'm gonna keep being Secretary of State. You know, there's a friend of mine who had this theory when he was like he said when he or it might even be a bit. I don't remember, but. Like, when he's in like a rideshare, he won't talk. And then the last two minutes, he'll just take great interest. So he leaves on a real high note. And so it's like he's kind of like distant and not really doing much. And then the last two minutes be like, oh, that sounds great. Well, good luck with your family. And then so that's kind of like he's just trying to leave, like, yeah, leave on a high note. So the last thing he's going to try to do is actually decent after a bunch of ********. Yeah. When I when I enter a party, I set off an IED at the start of it. So everyone's really like. Shaken up, but then at the end I hand over A6 pack of beer and right, that means everybody is like, you know, that was the guy who dropped the oh come on, he's the six pack guy. In my opinion, that's who that guy is. That is how Enrique said your handles everything. So yeah, now again, but but here's the thing, the fact that like, this is all existential for Henry, right? Ending the war in in between Israel and and her neighbors is like he he he knows he has to do this or he's not going to keep his gig. So not only is he trying to negotiate peace, but he can't let anyone else play a role in bringing peace to the Middle East, right. Because this is how this is his job interview. And you know how Henry Kissinger treats job. You've seen what he'll do for a job interview, right? Won't do to get a job. Yeah, like to see that list. So this becomes a problem when, while this is all going on, this Egyptian and Israeli general, you've got this massive encircled Egyptian army. The, the Egyptian general in charge of that and the Israeli general like meet each other in the field between their armies and like sit down and start negotiating a ceasefire and figuring out how to pull. Like, they start like, talk like people like it's one of these weird moments in military history with these guys are like, I think we can work something out. Like, we don't need to be doing this anymore. Running guys. You guys be quiet. Sides. Shoot the bit. Kill them quick so Henry is enraged when he hears this happening, and he's stacked. What then he starts again. All these people who like in any other situation, neither like an Israeli general or an Egyptian general in the 1970s. Not guys you would expect to be the voices of reason, but because his Kissinger's in the story, yeah. God. So he starts maneuvering to make these guys shut the **** **. He sends a letter to the Israeli ambassador asking, what does Yariv Yariv, the Israeli general selling here, tell him to stop. Suppose Yariv comes out a great hero on disengagement. What do you discuss on December 18th, which is the next round of negotiations? I mean, God, he's such a yeah, I mean, it's just, what a heinous *******. I mean, I feel like he could still tilt the credit towards him, but he's like. What's my fingerprints solely on? Yeah. I I don't wanna, like, get too into, like, what might have happened because I'm not an expert on either Egyptian or Israeli military history. But you have to think maybe it would have been good if, like, an Israeli general and an Egyptian general had, like, brought peace to the conflict and, like, maybe that had, like, been part of, like, the military legacy in the area might have been nice. I don't know. You realize we're staring down the barrel of a tragedy right now. I might not be recognized as the one who did this. So, Kissinger, a biography continues the story quote at Kissinger's behest, both Sadat and Mayer reigned in their generals at the Kilometer 101 talks. That's like where this army is encircled. The Israeli ambassador, although with Kissinger partisan, felt that it was largely a matter of ego. Kissinger's view was that if any concessions were to be made, they should be made by him. Then, it's recalled, he was very upset when he found out that things were actually being settled by the generals at kilometer 101. We had to make them stop. Ego was a weakness of his, but it was also the source of his greatness. Which I might quibble with, but weakness is understating. Yes, I would. I would like to call in an airstrike. Can we kill both generals? And we're gonna need to find the generals. These guys are getting along way too well. And I didn't. I wasn't there. Listen, **** I know the Watergate stuff has you, but can we invade both countries for sure? Will you complain? Kyle, come play camp here. So I to his sort of credit, though, the piece that Henry helped negotiate to end the Yom Kippur War would prove to be durable. And it's set up diplomatic relations between Egypt and Israel for the next time. There's this very powerful moment when, like, Golda my year, because, like, Sadat still can't talk directly to Israel. There's a whole, like, diplomatic thing going on, right? But he tells Kissinger to tell her, like, I'm taking off my military uniform and I'm never going to wear it again, basically like things do. Like, this is a really like. Good move in a lot of ways, obviously, that you could say. This also, like paves the way for nobody ever coming to help the Palestinians again, which is worth noting, but it does bring it into this series of, like, constant wars. So, yeah, what an amazing risk to take, though, to be like, you guys stop. We'll do my version. Are we going to do it my way? Yeah, the Frank Sinatra of Middle East peace negotiations. That is kind of the reputation he gets because obviously this plays incredibly well. For Americans. And so Nick Kissinger is seen as still this, like massive hero, even while this is a big part of why he's so popular, even as the rest of the Edmund goes down in flames. Now this inaugurates a period of what comes to be known as shuttle diplomacy. That's a term you'll hear associated with Kissinger all the time. And it's him flying all these different countries in the Middle East and in Africa. Him flying from like capital to capital for weeks on end doing these negotiations where he's always the man in the center of things. Henry actually kind of grew addicted to throwing himself in the middle of international crises and flying nonstop between capitals to do these negotiations. It was this, and the popularity he earned from being seen as a peacemaker, that guaranteed him to keep his job in Ford's cabinet. One of the few upsides to Kissinger's career prior to the 70s is that he hadn't really ****** with Africa to any appreciable degree. Now, this is not because Henry Kissinger would have an issue with ******* with Africa, but it is because the US like we didn't have a huge footprint in the continent until the 60s. No, that's just slammed right now we do so much going on, so many countries to ruin. Yeah. Yeah, this is like him learning Spanish. He just never found the time. Yeah, look. And I'm a little older and I get the 10 second rule in Africa, but my God. So yeah, the the US footprint in Africa started up when the CIA in like the early 60s, I think. When the CIA murdered or allowed other people to murder, it's a little unclear. Patrice Lumumba, the left wing, democratically elected leader of the Congo. the US backed a right wing general. Well, even calling it like right and left are less useful terms in this. But we back a general called Joseph Mobutu who proceeded to spend the next couple decades robbing the country blind. Just seems like a pattern. Yeah, it happened. It's it's weird that it keeps happening all the time. While there was other US ******* in Africa throughout the 60s and early 70s, it stated a fairly low ebb until April of 1975, when Saigon fell to North Vietnam, now known as just Vietnam. 1975 was known by some in the media as the year of Intelligence, not because any particularly good decisions were being made, but because Congress was investigating the presidency over Watergate and there was this big flood of public questions about clandestine foreign actions carried out under the ages of Cold War politics. A lot of the stuff we were talking about in episodes. 2-3 and four had started to leak by this point. And so people are like, there's this big national discussion about, like, what the what should we be doing? All the should we have, like, a CIA? Like, should we? Maybe. And there are like, the CIA gets like, the there's a reforming of the CIA that occurs in this. Yeah. You could question the degree to which it mattered and it happened. Yeah. It may have made them less good at doing the bad things that they did, but not for lack of trying hard to imagine. It's the the reform in the CIA is the difference between overthrowing Salvador Allende and those like us guys ******* themselves in Venezuela after getting, like, arrested by fishermen. Wow. For Henry Kissinger though, the year of Intelligence was a year where he he spent trying to reorient the United States towards a new anti Communist conflict. His target this time was the nation of Angola. Now Angola is a midsized African nation located on the southwest coast of the continent, directly under the Congo and directly above Namibia. It's close enough to South Africa to get ****** with, but not so close that they can just send troops right over the border, you know, which is a better place to be than directly bordering South Africa in this. In 1961 the people there decided to have themselves a good old fashioned war of independence which lasted 13 years, killed 10s of thousands of people and only ended when a coup overthrew the dictator of Portugal. Now this coup was by the way very weird. Most sources will describe it as a left wing coup against the dictator. The reality is a lot more muddled. The guy who winds up in charge of Portugal on paper is a monocle wearing general who's like a real I love him already, yeah. I mean a man and he's not really leftist, but the powers behind him are some very left wing army officers. They form a new democratic government which includes several elected communist leaders. So Portugal has like elected communist deputies now. OK, Henry Kissinger flips the **** out of this. He is certain the country will fall to Soviet influence. Interestingly, like this statant he's worked out with the Soviets. A big part of it is that this idea that like, well the Soviets have their sphere of influence in the east and we have like the West has its sphere. Year of influence in Western Europe and the Soviets kind of hold to that here because they don't get involved in Portugal. They don't, like, try to make push things further in their direction. Henry is like convinced they're going to and is absolutely wrong because paranoia from Nixon, he was like, well, yeah, yeah. Portugal eventually elects other people. Like, again, the government stays fairly left wing by his standards, but like, it does not, as you might notice, it does not join the Iron Curtain, you know, right. Like it's yeah. Kissinger is just like there's we have some quotes from he's absolutely certain that like they're about to go full Stalinist because again he's wrong about most things actually. He does not have a good understanding of like what's going to happen anywhere. No, it's just almost at this point he's hung around so long that you're kind of just like I guess he must know I mean he won a Nobel Peace Prize like he like he must know something you. I think it's worth looking at like what happens like Henry's expectations for what's going to happen in Portugal versus what happens and then think back to Chile where like Henry's like. Hyundai is going to lead to, they're gonna go full Communist and it's gonna be, you know, no, maybe if Lynde had stayed in power, they're just wouldn't have been a dictator and things would have been fine. And and they would have had a lot less problems than they went on that. How many people die in the Communist version? Yeah, probably less. The puppets that we put in power are not like these amazing, like, peacekeepers. It's just it's just like we everyone, we're like the Midas of genocides. Yeah. Yeah, exactly. So the biggest international result of the coup is that the new Portuguese government had no stomach for colonies, right? They negotiate a treaty with the three largest militant groups in Angola in 75. These were the FMLA, the PLA and UNITA, the non acronym. Names of all these groups are in French. I am I'm not, I'm not even going to try. Dave. Dave, you can have absolutely nothing. What you need to know is that the MPL were Marxists, right? Kind of Marxists. They were formed, at least. The organization had been formed by members of Angola's intelligentsia who were Marxist, and Marxism had like a big influence on the PLA, unfortunately. Like, yeah, meanwhile, like kind of. So that's one faction. The FMLA and UNITA are are generally described as being right wing groups, but this is one of those things where like grafting Western political terms. On to the Civil War in Angola does not work great. All of these groups, even the ostensibly Marxist MLA's are very tribal in origin. And by that I mean like they are based on specific tribal grievances and tribal like like arguments, right, that are going on in the region as opposed to like being clearly like, well we're pro communist, we're anti communists. Like that's really less of what's going on. We're getting shirts made, yeah. For an example of how useless a strict ideological lens is here, Unida was initially very left wing in its messaging attacking the United States. As quote, the notorious agents of Imperialism Unite US fighters were literally trained by North Korean soldiers. But by the end of the Civil War in Angola, they had been receiving arms from the Reagan administration for years, brokered via their paid representative, Paul Manafort. Oh my God, what the hell? That's the kind of war this is. We're like, United starts off being like. We're gonna end American imperialism, and by the end, they're like Paul Manafort. Get us weapons, you if you're gonna party, get next to this manifold character. He is a good time. Yeah, pretty just like to show you how weird this is, technically, in the Angolan Civil War, Paul Manafort and North Korea are on the same side. I feel like Paul Manafort is 250 years old. Yeah, I mean, and by the end, it is fair to say that like by the end of the Civil war, united like leader Jonas Savimbi is calling himself an anti communist. That's his messaging, but he's less about anti communism. Then again, there's specific local grievances he has with the PLA and like that's more why they're fighting than that he like believes strongly in anti communism is he just knows that's how you get weapons, right? OK, that's right. He's speaking the language, right? Yeah. And when North Korea is training his guys, he's not into Juche, you know? He's like, he wants the dudes to train his guys. Yeah. Right now the FMLA is led by a guy named, and that's the other usually called a right wing faction is led by a guy named Holden Roberto, who used to work with Savimbi before Savimbi formed United. I know this is a very complicated conflict. I'm sorry. They're generally described as like right wing. And they did receive aid from the CIA, so that would like, OK, yeah, definitely right wing getting aid from the CIA. They also got military aid from China, Romania, India, Algeria, Zaire. The AFL-CIO and the Ford Foundation. Or at least eight of some sort. So again, like, the sides here are just ******* baffling. They like the Tinder swindler. There's. Yeah, working every side. Yeah. China, the CIA and the AFL-CIO shaking hands over backing the FMLA agreement. Yeah. It's like Big Brother. Wait, you guys here too? Yeah, well, the Ford foundation. Well, well. Mint Mobile offers premium wireless starting at just 15 bucks a month. And now for the plot twist. Nope, there isn't one. 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Let's break your handle the hosting, creation, distribution, and monetization of your podcast. Go to spreaker.com. That's SP. RE aker.com, get paid to talk about the things you love with spreaker from iheart. The MPLA, which these again are the kind of Marxist guys. And if you're of the three factions, they are the ones who most do believe in. Like a political thing that, like we would recognize in terms of like left right sides. They are partly armed by the Soviet Union, which should not be surprising, but most of their military aid comes from Cuba, and we're not really going to get into it. But it it's worth noting, like how substantial Cuban aid is to the PLA, Cuba starts sending soldiers to Angola in November of 75 and by 1988. Had more than 55,000 soldiers in the country. Wow. And, like, that's a trek. I don't know if you guys know this, but Cuba and the West Coast of Africa, not super close. Yeah. Yeah. It's it's a bit of a jaunt. Yeah. And that's also a long involvement. You know, they're in there more than a decade. There's a lot of commitment here. So as is generally Cuba now, to be fair. So. As is generally the case, all of the communists were not in agreement about Angola. The People's Republic of China did not particularly care about like a left wing struggle in Angola. They wanted to keep Soviet power on at Bay on a continent where they were starting to do some business themselves. So China and the US work together to support the FMLA and UNITA. This is exactly the sort of thing Kissinger had been going for when he pushed to connect the US diplomatically to China. I want to quote now from a write up by Maria Guda of Wilfred Laurier University quote. This was part of Kissinger's grand strategy of triangular diplomacy. Triangular diplomacy was essentially the US exploiting the relationship between Communist China and the Soviet Union to create a 3 way to taunt between the countries with the US at the helm. Kissinger was not pushing for covert operations through the CIA in order to elevate American standing in China because Nixon and Kissinger were orchestrating something larger. This was to use China as a counterweight against the Soviets. Kissinger's emphasis on triangular diplomacy caused him to view regional conflict in terms of involvement. And the Chinese and the Soviets, not in terms of a local struggle. So he very much sees this as a battleground between different ideologies. But anyone who knows anything about the Angola civil knows that, like, no, that's not really what's going on. Like everyone is like, everyone is in here. And it is certainly not like about what kind of political **** individual parties believe. At the site, you can't graph these easily under like, a western axis. But as Isaacson writes, Angola became, quote, a vivid example of Kissinger's tendency to see complex local struggles in an East West context. In all respect to Kissinger, wrote Jonathan Kwitney in his study of the Angolan War One really has to question the sanity of someone who looks at an ancient tribal dispute over control of distant coffee fields and sees it as a Soviet threat to the security of the United States. I mean, what a guy, yeah? It's like, I mean it's also, I mean it's it's so again I mean the ego on this ******* dude to be able to just go into thing, come massive conflicts, have no clue and make it that binary and think that he's doing anything. I mean he's just, he's just so emboldened. Yeah, he's emboldened. He just like, he's so arrogant that he's like, well I don't you do me a favor. Could some of you wear red shirts and some of you wear blue so we could kind of stuff, let's do shirt. Skins, huh? Yeah. I don't need to like I, Henry Kissinger, don't need to, like, understand the actual dimensions of why these sides are fighting. Yeah. I can just assume that it graphs on to every other conflict I've ever cared about. Yeah. Knowledge is weakness. Yeah. And it this is like, he's not the only American to be arrogant in this specific way about a conflict in Africa. Right. The last is the last one. He would be the last. The last. Since then. So CIA funding for UNITA and the FMLA was initially quite low, but Kissinger pushed for an escalation, and soon the agency had poured $22 million in covert support for both of these groups. Kissinger felt they were thinking small, though. He believed that after suffering a public defeat in Vietnam, US foreign policy needed a comeback. And Angola was yeah, baby, yeah. Yeah, and we're better place than Angola. Everybody cares. Everybody. Americans like what everyone's plugged in. You're gonna love my new stuff. Mm-hmm. The problem with Vietnam is that it was too distant from American concerns. Angola. That's it. That's the problem. Well, he yeah. So he believes that, like, Angola is gonna be our ******* comeback tour. It's the equivalent of, I don't know, one one other times Elton John did a did a did a farewell tour. I got, yeah, something like that. He's on his night. Yeah. There's a lot of similarities between Henry Kissinger and Elton John's. Musical yeah. Bombing and The Jets. Yeah, actually tiny dancer, that song is about is about Henry Kissinger. Yeah, he is the tiny dancer. He's he is a he is a little guy. So yeah Kissinger wants to prove that the United States is still a global power and he also wants to prove that Henry Kissinger has like is still a Secretary of State with some teeth. You know. God he's just like seated a bunch to the ******* in these negotiations with Vietnam. He's kind of bring Peace of Mind to Henry Kissinger. Yeah he is like everyone is going to see Vietnam as an L for me. So I need a win baby. So yeah you could kind of see his. Attitude and Angola as, like, the powerful sociopath version of buying a sports car to impress, like 20 year olds. Like when you're, you know, an old man. Yeah, right. He's in his midlife war crisis, and the people around Kissinger are a lot less bullish about escalating involvement in Angola. And in fact, this includes like the ******* CIA. But they had really big shoes to fill to be. Yeah, yeah. They just like, we don't want any part of this right now. Wow. You guys are really negative. You guys are saying, Gola, it's Angola, where is the wind? Gotta be a ******* hole in one, baby. In June of 75, Kissinger holds a meeting with President Ford, the Defense Secretary, the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and the head of the CIA. They discussed the invasion of Angola, and while most of that meeting is still classified, we know Kissinger urged what he called a diplomatic offensive quote. If we appeal to the Soviets to not be active, it will be a sign of weakness. He played on stereotypes of Africa as mysterious and wild, claiming it is an area where no one can be sure of its judgments. Next Guda writes quote, revealing his talent for manipulation. Messenger used daunting and dramatic language to illustrate the situation in Angola as he saw it by giving the impression that there was no way to tell how the Angolan Civil War would play out. Kissinger pushed forward the idea that the US had better get involved in Angola through tangible or covert means before it was too late. the US through the CIA needed to support the FMLA in United to prevent the dominance of the Soviet backed MPLA. This view holy disregards the idea that the Angolan Civil War was indeed that a civil war. Kissinger was positioning Angola in a wider E 1st. West, context. Oh my God, you got biggie, you got Tupac. He's guys. I mean the only the United States can want to be in. Like, only the United States can be sold on getting involved in a conflict or he's like, we have no clue what's going on. So we gotta get our heads. We had a really throw our ***** in this one. Come on, guys, let's get moving. It could be crazy if this is 1 where like the US actually doesn't really want to get involved like this. Kissinger is the one pulling everyone else in here. He's a Martin. Wizard. Yeah. And and based on his urgings, the CIA comes up with a plan called I a feature. It was a covert paramilitary operation in which U.S. military advisers and special forces would be sent to Angola in a manner basically identical to how US involvement in Vietnam started. Because it was literally like, let's do that again, baby. Let's see. It goes pretty good when we do it. This this is how I get to bomb Namibia, huh? That's not my vision board. He has dreams of flattening the Congo. Ohh I woke up. I thought that I had done it. Now, despite the fact that the CIA did come up with this plan at his behest, there's intense resistance within the agency, a lot of whom think Kissinger has lost his ******* mind. And thus CIA director William Colby joins our pantheon of bad guys who seem reasonable because Henry Kissinger is involved. Right? So Kobe is like pretty rattled by how Vietnam ended. And also. The fact that there's all these congressional inquiries into, like, the CIA doing a bunch of other terrible **** right? They're actively being investigated right now, right? So this isn't Kobe being a good guy. This is Kobe being, like, I don't want to drive when I've got, you know, **** in the car, basically, right? Like I'm holding right now. You know what? Honestly, any any other time I'm just ******* Angola like crazy. Like I'm just ******* going nuts. But it's just not the right time. We got a lot of people right now. Yeah, he's the guy who's like, he's like, he's just like on a casino floor and he's been cheating. And like the securities gathered and they're whispering and pointing at him. He notices and he's still playing. Yeah, he keeps going. He's gonna let it ride on black one more time. How many times I have to say hit me. O the 40 committee, which again Kissinger heads approves I a feature, but William Colby is like, OK, but I'm going to insist we actually go to Congress to have the funds appropriated for the secret option that branch, those guys. What are they still here? Version called me. So while Kissinger argues for his covert operators, South Africa, since troops in to support the FMLA, and UNITA, who it again it originally been trained by North Korea. So there's FMLA troops who received training from both South Africa and North Korea. This is just a very weird war. So China has the reaction we're all having and it's like, you know what? This is too messy for me. I I don't even need this right now. Like, I got other **** going on and they kind of bounce. The situation OK. The Soviets and the Cubans, though, extend more aid to the MPLA, who win the war handily and install themselves in the capital, Luanda, by the end of 1975. So a few weeks after this, the CIA holds an interagency working group meeting with Kissinger to discuss how to ask Congress to send in US advisors. And, like, at this point the war is lost and there's Kissinger is like, no, we gotta get some guys in there. Come on, guys. No one else wants this, right? They're all everyone else is. Like, this seems like way more. The hassle showing up to the party at like, 2:45 AM come on, let's keep going. Let's do shots. What do you mean? The kegs tab? Yeah, the CIA is already puking from how much they've had to drink in Vietnam and Chile and ****. Come on, I brought absinthe. Let's go. So Kissinger or so yeah they they have this meeting and like so Kissinger has a meeting with one of the like a guy in this with this a bunch of people and then like they hold a separate meeting afterwards with the CIA about what Kissinger had said so like so basically the side meeting son Kissinger now. Yeah so basically they present Kissinger with a report on like what would have to be done to send US advisers into Angola and Kissinger reads the report and rather than. Giving a yes or a no, he grunts and walks out of his office. So after this, all of these CIA guys have to sit down and decide like what does Henry Kissinger grunting mean? We've but was this a yes or a no? This guy is really good at deciphering what Henry grunts mean. Well gentlemen, it was a pretty long grunt, which is never good. He's a sigh grunt, which for Henry means he's a little agitated. I'm gonna quote about taught writing about this meeting Kissinger, a biography by Walter Isaacson. Everyone found this rather disconcerting, especially since Kissinger was heading off for Beijing. Well, someone asked, was it a positive grunt or a negative grunt? Mulcahy paused. It was just a grunt, he explained. Like umph. I mean, it didn't go up or down. Stockwell, the agent in charge, marveled as a group of somber officials supervising the nation's only extant war, sat around a table trying to decipher a Kissinger grunt. Mulcahy. Provided his imitation of the grunt, once again emphasizing its flatness. Someone else at the other end of the table tried it. There were a few experiments, contrasting positive grunts with the voice rising than a -. 1 with the voice falling, different people attempted it. Well, asked the CIA officer who was chairing the meeting. Do we proceed with the advisors? Mulcahy scowled and puffed on his pipe. We'd better not, he finally said, trying to decipher his boss's mind. Kissinger just decided not to send Americans into the Sinai. There were a lot of nods. The request for advisors was shelved. It was an amazing way to run a war, Mulcahy said years later as he recalled the incident. Oh yeah, by the way, this is they accidentally wrote a home improvement script at the end of this. This is actually where the pilot to that show came from. Tim the toolman Taylor. It was it was like, no, I was like, yeah. OK, I like that. That sounds a little more positive. Yeah. It's just like, what a moment for the United States, all these ******* Spooks with blood on their hands being like, yeah, well, let's was it like or like, you know, because you do, at least at some point in your existence. For the most part, you do believe that when someone is saying the Central Intelligence Agency that it is really like working on intelligence and and and is intelligent and is a body. That is actually you know processing information that potentially you don't have access to and instead they're just sitting around a ******* table going like do the grunt again Jim yeah it do the grunt again it it reveals. And this is I think where a lot of folks on the left kind of mix up viewing the CIA as like hyper competent and it's where a lot of people everywhere **** ** viewing Kissinger as hyper competent like no they have a lot of power and they use it badly but like at the end of the day Kissinger. Doesn't have the balls to like, say yes or no on something. And so he grunts. And then all of these ******* again, bloody handed monsters spend an entire meeting, like, repeating the grunt and trying to figure out if it means yes or no and and there's no. Like it's so unchecked. I mean, like, you there? And it's it is still, is that it? But it's just there's nobody there to be like, hey, this is ******* nuts. Yeah. Instead they're like, do the grunt again. Try the grunt again. Yes or no? Damn. The best grunt. Dan do it again because I wanna play it slow for everyone. Ohe ohe that's a maybe to me bro it's while I think it's sad's ambivalent having known Henry for a little while he's ******. So the CIA's request for another 28 million in funding and the discussion of sending in advisers was again leaked to Seymour Hersh. Congress cut off all aid. He obviously he puts out an article about it. Congress cuts off aid to Angola as a result of this. Kissinger does not get his way but the CIA. They had already funneled into UNITA, helped the group stay alive. The Angolan Civil War did not officially end until 2002, although again, this is one of those things. This is a really nasty civil war. It lasts a ridiculous amount of time. Kissinger gets a lot of the blame, but we should also note that, like Paul Manafort is much more on this. Like, he is the guy Manafort's the guy who brings Savimbi to DC and gets Reagan to send a ******** of weapons over to, like, really escalate things. Thank God for Reagan. Yeah. Thank God for Reagan, but it is amazing that this ******* goes on until 2002. It crazy insane. Yeah, yeah. What a legacy. Hmm. What a legacy. So I have teased y'all that Kissinger has a Rhodesia connection and yet again, the funniest thing about this is that it's one of the least ****** ** things he's ever involved in. But the story is kind of funny so I'm going to tell it anyway. So in Rhodesia you've got this country we're about 8% of the population at the height of like white. Population in Rhodesia, about 8% of them are white, but they hold effectively 100% of the political power. This obviously is not something a lot of the black people living their like. Sure, for reasons I don't think I need to explain. So some of them decide to fight back. And there's a number of rebel groups and soon in an ugly insurgent war between the Rhodesian government, which by the way is an international pariah, right. They're like actually not supposed to exist basically. So no one can legally sell them arms. So everything has to get like smuggled through South Africa and. The soldier of Fortune magazine winds up sending a bunch of fighters over. William F Buckley Junior or William F Buckley raises money for them. Yadda yadda yadda. Very nasty war. We've talked about it in other episodes. The Go fund me. Yeah, it is. It is a go fund me war. So by the time Kissinger is in office, the white minority government of Rhodesia has spent years locked into the losing side of a grinding insurgent campaign. The international community widely condemns Rhodesia as an apartheid state, and there's a bunch of arms embargoes. And in fact, pretty much everyone hates Rhodesia. Except for South Africa and the US right wing who see the roadies as anti communist crusaders. Sure, Kissinger was locked into an awkward position here. He wanted to negotiate an end to the fighting and an end to the white supremacist government of Rhodesia. But he also doesn't want to **** *** his right wing base too much. You know, this is like a really messy situation for him of course. So policy towards Rhodesia in the Nixon years. There's a plan Nixon approved through South Africa in 1969 that is like. U.S. policy in Rhodesia for nearly a decade and it is literally called. I am sorry for saying this, but Nixon calls us plans like the US stance towards Rhodesia quote the tar baby option. Oh my God. You guys later. Thanks for having me on the podcast. Oh my God, it's *******. So at least there's no stream of white supremacy through American power. This was the one time it's like, can't believe the guy. ******* recorded himself for yeah. Like this is not just recorded himself. This isn't just like Nixon saying a slur in a conversation with his bud. No. Yeah. This is official U.S. government policy. Yeah. Pitches. Yeah. We write this out places. Someone wrote it down. It was like, OK, I'll I'll hand it in if you're sure, Mr. President. Well, seems pretty good to me. And this is this is not just towards Rhodesia. This is towards all of like South Africa to these these like white minority governments in Africa. And the premise is that quote, the whites are here to stay and the only way that. Constructive change can come is through them. So it's so. And it really hasn't changed that much. We just have fancier titles. Yeah. We're we we don't put the slurs right in the title. Yeah. No, we don't record the President and we don't put the slurs in the title. So the policy is sold to American liberals and moderates by basically saying the only way to liberate black Africans is to improve their economic outcomes through trade. And that means dealing with the white governments. Right. Because if you were to just. Yeah. Yeah, I mean, it's really, it's really bleak to tech. We've just changed it to tech, essentially. Yeah, we would maintain the document, declared public opposition to racial repression, but relax political isolation and economic restrictions on the white states. I mean, it's ******* crazy, like. You know, the problem here is that people don't like the 8% white people that run the entire ******* place. It's one of those we we continue, and we'll always have debates over like, sanctions and, like, when they're good and bad ideas. But the argument here is that, like, we can't sanction South Africa and Rhodesia because it'll hurt black people. And the degree to which that's a lie is that, like, well, you're saying we have to start selling them ******* weapons so that they can oppress black people in order to improve economic outcomes for black people. And perhaps that's ******* insane. Yeah, yeah. It's a little more nuanced than that by not by a lot, not much, not much. Yeah. To his credit, when Nixon is out and Ford is in, Kissinger kills the racial slur option and he authorized a new plan, one that is a lot better and that is actually focused on spirited opposition to white minority rule in Rhodesia. Kissinger gives a big speech in Lusaka that immediately enrages the right wing of the Republican Party. Basically he's like our plant, like under Ford. We want to bring an end to the government in Rhodesia. Like this government cannot be allowed. Right way is like unbelievable. Yes, Ronald Reagan. Ronald Reagan, but percent of the populace, you can't disenfranchise 7% of Rhodesia. Have you seen the color of their *** **** skin? That is essentially what Ronald Reagan says. He denounces Kissinger's plan as undercutting the possibility of a quote, just an orderly settlement and argues that it will provoke a massacre of white people. Boy, so I mean, you want to have a head popping moment, try to find a good guy in a Reagan? Kissinger debate it is. It is an amazing fight. It's just like, well, yeah, we. I hate everyone involved in this. We should pay more attention to the white people. I think we need to be careful. I feel like you're both conning me into something. I think you guys are good cop, bad coping, and you're working for the same outcome. Look, Henry, I'm not 100% sure why I think you're wrong in this, but you must be. Yeah, the other guy's gotta be wrong too though, so I don't really know what to do here. Don't trust Reagan and hate him. But, Kissinger, you're the worst person on the planet, so I don't know what I'd call a bit of a pickle. Yeah, this is a doozy of an issue. It's gonna need to go in the other room and do some grunting. Yeah, so he yeah, what's happening here is that Kissinger is trying to wrench U.S. government policy in Africa away from supporting explicitly racist regimes in Africa and Reagan and the right wing is trying to get, like, into a Country Club or something. There's gotta be some angle of I mean obviously the same reason he does anything right he wants to be seen as being the guy who negotiates right into these big issues and he's trying to. I think he recognizes by this point that like well Republicans aren't going to stay in power forever. But I Henry Kissinger went to have a shot at being in power still and maybe if I if I get rid of this bad government Rhodesia people will be like Henrique let's give him a gig you know he accidentally stumbles into. Yes, the proper outcome, because personally he wants to end it and so he sees the way to end it is actually the the way. That's good. It's not we're we're lining up Henry's personal interests with a prudent solution. And yeah it happened. That eclipse is very rare. Yeah it's he's like a guy who like stops a home invader from murdering a family. But but but it's later found out that it's because he was hitting on a 15 year old girl, like he was trying to flirt with their. Stuff like, it's like that sort of situation where it's like, well, good, I guess. Like he stops a robbery because he was peeping through a window that he fell through. Yeah, exactly. Yeah, it is. It is hard to find the moral lesson to take out of this. So yeah. Obviously, the Reagan right loses their minds over what Kissinger's doing here, Pat Buchanan, a former Nixon speechwriter, writes in a column quote. It is too early to determine if Secretary of State Henry Kissinger's safari through Black Africa did greater damage to U.S. policy interests or to President Ford's hopes in the remaining primaries. I mean, again, I like he just it needs to stop. Where? Like this, this never ending? What does it do to your reelection chances? **** it's like we we are so conditioned to that. Seeing how we operate and do everything as opposed to actually just trying to do the thing that does long term good. And why would you do the thing that is long term good is Mike Gareth exactly right. Exactly. I mean, it's true. But it's like, I don't know, it's just, it's a foregone conclusion now that everything is viewed through the prism of what does it do to the poll numbers. Can I just say take off your masks? Yeah. Right. Yeah. O Kissinger did not achieve a tremendous amount in Rhodesia while he was Secretary of State. He got Ian Ian Smith, who's the leader of Rhodesia, to agree to a two year turnover from minority rule to an actual democracy. But the way he did this was by assuring Smith that black moderates had agreed that during the turnover whites would remain in control of the military and police. This was a lie. The black people in like the like the the the black moderates in Rhodesia had never agreed to this. He's just lying to Smith to get him to agree to this. Awesome. And the whole, like, anytime there's like a two year deal that you're like, that's just your way of like letting it sort of settle so that you can keep pushing you the *******. Exactly. Yeah. Yeah. The story of the negotiations is classic Kissinger. He's telling everyone what they want to hear and then kind of weaseling his way into getting people to sign things that make him look good. This write up from the New York Times sums it up well. Mr. Smith has said he agrees to the five point plan he made in public because he had received assurances from Mr Kissinger that the black leaders had accepted the whole package. Including Mr Smith's addition on white menace on the white ministers. In his view, either the Blacks have reneged or Mr Kissinger misled him. The blacks, such as President Julius Nyerere of Tanzania, insist that they did not give their approval to the details of the five point plan, only to the general thrust of majority rule in two years, leaving it to Britain to work out details later with black and white Rhodesians. They say they would have rejected the proposal for white ministers. Mr Kissinger and his aides have been evasive. On October 24th Mr Mr Kissinger said on television that I think everybody is telling the truth. Wow. Put it incredible, guy. Wow. That is the baddest. That is the best ******** statement I've ever ******* heard. So much better than ending, I believe. I'm not sure. Or I don't know. You're lying. It's awesome. I think everyone who is the bad guy in Rhodesia? Nobody. Nobody. I think everybody was really good. Everyone's really cool. Well, you need a bad guy. In the end, the talks collapsed. The war continued on for two more years until the Rhodesian Strategic Fuel Reserve was blown up by insurgents and the government was forced to the table. Kissinger and his supporters would later claim that the eventual peace was negotiated on the terms laid out during Kissinger's negotiations. That's kind of questionable. It's probably it is fair to say that this that by coming in very strongly and he was very unequivocal about condemning the government of Rhodesia. By doing this as the Secretary of State, Kissinger caused a shift that led to a significant increase in trust of the US by Black African nations. It was super ****** *** you know? Yeah, obviously, yeah, it's one of his better moves from an ethical standpoint, but it's an ego move still, right? Everything is an ego move, and obviously it's an. It's a sign of how much more ****** ** things become that doing this broadly good thing causes the beginning of the end of his career in politics. Of course, it's like. Can help the black people. That's it, you're done. Yeah, yeah, that that's it for you kissing. But to be fair, it worked for me. That's why I did it. We know everybody. We know nobody. But you know what won't fail? To bring peace to Rhodesia. What's that? The sponsors of this podcast who orchestrated the destruction of the Rhodesian Strategic Fuel Reserve, that that is, we are sponsored entirely by. Of the Rhodesian rebel forces, here's an ad. Mint Mobile offers premium wireless starting at just 15 bucks a month. And now for the plot twist. Nope, there isn't one. Mint Mobile just has premium wireless from 15 bucks a month. There's no trapping you into a two year contract. You're opening the bill to find all these nuts fees. There's no luring you in with free subscriptions or streaming services that you'll forget to cancel and then be charged full price for none of that. For anyone who hates their phone Bill, Mint Mobile offers premium wireless for just $15.00 a month. 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So, yeah, on the whole, Kissinger's last year or so as Secretary of State involved his least number of war crimes per month, which might point to personal growth, but probably points to the fact that he and Nixon had just exhausted the US government's ability to do shady ****. We needed a breather, right? We had to take a breather. It took us a few years to get geared up for Reagan, you know? Yeah, he's like he's been. Go ahead, Dave. We've just killed so many. There's like, no, like, where do we we dig up? We dig them up and kill them again like it's hard. We're out of ammunition. He's like he's no longer a starting QB. He's being traded. He's riding the pine. Yeah, he's got like, he. Yeah, I got a wrist injury, you know, he's. Yeah, he's on IR for the year. Yeah. So the last one of his escapades we're going to cover then, is Kissinger's relationship with the Kurds. Oh, **** yeah, baby. Jesus ******* Christ. The Kurdish people are the largest ethnic group on Earth without a nation of their own. They make up large chunks of southern Turkey, southern Iran, northern Iraq, and NE Syria. Now if you look at this kind of broad Kurdistan region on a map, you'll notice a couple things. For one, it's all landlocked. Which means if if you were, and there was a lot of talk when like Colonial powers left started to leave the Middle East after World War Two, that like should and and promises were in fact made to the Kurds. One of the issues that comes up is that it's going to cause like severe economic difficulties because they would be landlocked. You'll also note that their territories all tend to exist. Chunks of states that have wound up fighting each other repeatedly over the last half century or so, right? Turkey and Syria, Iran and exactly. And the Kurds were used on purpose by basically everyone as buffer zones and proxy fighters in these conflicts. Now, starting in the Nixon administration, the Shah of Iran had a problem. He was engaged in an escalating conflict with a new sexy young dude on the block, Saddam Hussein of Iraq. Now, can I just say right away, I like both these guys. They seem like they're both going to go good places. Uh. So. The shot decides he wants to arm. He wants the US to arm Kurdish fighters in order to give Saddam some trouble and ease up pressure. The ostensible leader of the Kurdish people struggle in Iraq at this time is a guy named Mustafa Barzani. Now, Mustafa had been leading his people in battle against the Iraqi state prior to Saddam taking power for like a decade at this point, and he had repeatedly begged the United States for aid. the US traditionally did not like Barzani because he had spent a decade exiled in the Soviet Union and had some socialist. E tendencies. But the Israelis and the Shah had experienced great luck in using the Kurds to keep Saddam, who'd taken power pretty recently, off of their back. Kurdish rebels tied up 80% of the Iraqi military during the 1967 war against Israel, and are probably a big part of the reason why Iraq did not join in that war. In April of 1972, Saddam signed a Treaty of friendship with the Soviet Union. This finally tipped things for the nation of friendship is just a great term. I mean, it is a nice term. Rose BFF when I was seven at a treehouse. Yeah yeah. Can you sign my broke contract? Yeah. Bros Forever comes with AK-40 Sevens we are signing the BFF Treaty. So this finally tips things for the Nixon administration and Kissinger gives the go ahead for CIA director Richard Helms to express American sympathy with the Kurds and declare our quote readiness to consider their requests for exist for assistance next from a write up in foreign policy in early 1974, Saddam violated the terms of the March accord and unilaterally. Opposed a watered down version of autonomy for the Kurds. Barzani responded by traveling to Iran, where he met with the Shah and the CIA station chief to request US backing for a plan to set up an Arab Kurdish government that would claim to be the sole legitimate government of Iraq. As Kissinger wrote in his 1999 memoir Years of Renewal, Barzani's request triggered a flood of communications among U.S. officials focused on 2 questions, whether the United States would support a unilateral declaration of autonomy and what level of support the United States was willing to give the Kurds the CIA. Particular warned against increasing US assistance, but Kissinger was dismissive of CIA director William Colby's caution. Writing quote Colby's resistance was as unrealistic as Barzani's enthusiasm. Nixon ultimately decided to increase to increase US assistance to the Kurds, including the provision of £900,000 of Soviet made weapons that the CIA had stockpiled and a $1,000,000 lump sum of refugee assistance in April of 1974, Kissinger said. Hey, why the Soviet weapons? Is that to confuse things. You don't want people seeing them with US weapons that's gonna make it seem like we're involved. What an amazing, what an amazing move. ******* I mean. It's dope. It's very hard to commit a murder. Yeah. So in April of 1974, Kiss Kissinger sent Nixon's orders to the US ambassador in Tehran. This cable was important because it laid out a succinct proclamation of US interests, Visa V the Kurds. The objectives he wrote were to a give the Kurds capacity to maintain a reasonable base for negotiating recognition of rights by Baghdad Government, B to keep present Iraqi government tied down, but C not to divide Iraq permanently because an independent Kurdish. Area would not be economically viable and US and Iran have no interest in closing the door on good relations with Iraq under moderate leadership that. But there there are are, I mean I'm, I'm not great, but there are landlocked countries that are economically viable and it's understand there's a huge amount of oil. Yeah, it's such a crazy thing that they're saying like it's just. It's ******* insane what they are doing. And what Kissinger is establishing in writing here is U.S. policy towards Kurdish people for more than half a century. And the idea comes down to we will provide them with aid and weapons when they fight our enemies, but only to such an extent that they achieve minor tactical successes, never enough to allow them permanent autonomy. Because that's going to upset the balance of power, right? This has been ever since. This is what we do with the Kurds, right? And Kissinger is the guy who lays it out first now. Mustafa Barzani made the terrible mistake of believing that the US actually supported his people's independence. For three years the Kurds battled Saddam, sustaining thousands of casualties. But then in 1975, the Shah and Saddam made peace, and the Shah asked the CIA to cut off all aid to the Kurds as part of a deal with Iraq. The weapons Kurdish fighters had relied upon suddenly dried up. Barzani's fighters were massacred, thousands fled to Iran but were turned away by the Shah. Desperate, Mustafa cabled Kissinger. Whom he had gratefully sent 3 rugs and a golden Pearl Necklace's wedding gifts just months earlier. Your Excellency, the United States has a moral and political responsibility to our people, Kissinger never replied. Later that year, the House Intelligence Committee asked them to justify this betrayal. He responded covert actions should not be confused with missionary work. Oh my God, that's so cool. Like, you don't understand that sometimes I'm also just doing missionary stuff. Yeah, the key is. That they don't give a **** as he stands naked on his rug with just his Pearl necklace on. Yeah, Speaking of missionary, so in the 1976 presidential elections, Ronald Reagan attempted to primary Gerald Ford from the right. The Reagan campaign targeted Kissinger heavily, not for his numerous war crimes, but because of the fact that he had made it a taunt with the Soviet Union, right? That's why they're in, because it's amazing to be like, you know what? The rights actually got a point. He committed war crimes in Vietnam. I mean, you're talking about a guy who's killed millions of innocent people. No, that's actually not. That said, we're actually fine with all that. The peace stuff, we're ******. Little angry. Some of this peace stuff he's been locking in, they are specifically, they're livid that, like, part of the datant means Kissinger was like. We're not gonna **** with Soviet spheres of influence in Eastern Europe. And Reagan and his colleagues are like, well, this means they're just giving up Eastern Europe to communism, you know? Right. Always communism. Exactly. It's fascist hate. Communists. I mean, yeah, God and Kissinger's political instincts and charm were sufficient to fend off an attempt because there's within the Ford administration, there is an attempt to get forward, to promise to fire him in a second term, largely because they think it'll help him win the primary against Reagan. Right. And Nixon beats everyone here. He manages to get forward to be like, no, I would never fire Henry Kissinger. But this has. No, no, no, not Nixon. Kissinger succeeds in doing that with four. OK. So I thought, like, I was like, if you're listening at this point, there's a lot of Nixon in there. You know, you mix it up sometimes he did a cut. He's just in a cupboard in the White House still. Yeah. Gerald, give me some gin. Also. Keep Hank around. So the fact that Henry wins the fight within the Ford administration means that. Becomes like a major marketing term for the Reagan campaign, right? Like they do not stop. In fact they they institute a plank in the Republican Party that year. That's basically the anti Kissinger plank that says like I you will never accept that. Like communist state should exist anywhere. Essentially. That's kind of what they do. OK, just stabbing him in the heart. Yeah it is. It's amazing and it's a, it's a, it's a mark of like how much he ****** things up that you can't even feel good about his downfall because he's replaced by people who just suck even more. Yes. So Ronnie felt the spheres of influence, the step that Kissinger had established with the Soviet Union, were, yeah, giving up the Eastern like bloc to communism. He also attacked Kissinger for negotiating with Panama's new government because Henry was willing to give the Panama Canal back to the Panamanian people. Yeah, right to the Panama Canal. Yeah. Why would they get Wing was the right way. Yeah. So and Reagan wrote that thing, but they were so ******* mad. Come on. Yeah. No, there's no clay have no claim to that canal. Yeah, Reagan said in the speech. We built it, we paid for it and we're going to keep it. God refer to our two parter on the US in Panama for more on that one. So Reagan's primary attempt failed, but by struggling against the rising far right, Kissinger had hammered the final nail into his. Political careers, coffin in the Ford administration's last days, a dark alliance materialized and, smelling blood in the water, they acted to cut Kissinger off from any future career in Republican politics. The three main members of this alliance were Paul Wolfowitz from the CIA, Vice President Dick Cheney, and Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld. Baby yeah, it's like there's 4 Kissinger's it's like killing Satan and then three winged demons fly out of him. Yeah, no, it's so funny. It is so funny. Finally some good, really funny, and in fact so. Messenger has Kissinger like Rumsfeld, he sees, is almost like an A protege, like he and Rumsfeld are very close, and when Rumsfeld turns against him, Kissinger describes him as, quote, the rottenest person I've known in government, which is thin. Henry from you utterly mean honestly, absolutely meaningless from you. I mean, you're not allowed to. Yeah. It's so funny. It's so funny. So it's not funny for the all the people who are going to die. But it's kind of, it's funny in like an existential sense. Like if you're, if you're an alien looking at all this, like a TV show, it's pretty funny. Yeah, you'd be like, well, why can't, why don't they get a good guy? You're like, well, it's really hard to explain, but they just don't if you can't laugh at all the people dying, are you an American? Yeah. No. The answer is no. By the way, the first time that Nixon heard that. Messenger was working with a guy named Rumsfeld. He was like, well, pour him at a glass for me. Get some ice on it. Sounds ******* delicious. Put some celery in it. Umm, so Rumsfeld and Cheney worked within the White House? Oh my God, I can't believe I got to hear their name. I know, I know, baby. I know. Well, Wolfowitz is part of the CIA's team B now. Team B is an intelligence review board set up by Gerald Ford as a SOP to the far right. The Reagan Conservatives, who he's again trying to win over and get behind him so we can win. Election against Carter, the Reagan Conservatives were certain the agency had been the CIA, I mean, had been underreporting Soviet military power because the Soviet military and like the early chunk of of the Ford administration is like, they're actually not doing great. Like they're like, we we really don't need to keep buying a **** load of weapons. Like they're not they they're not they don't have the kind of military assets that we've been saying for years. And they now are getting a shady CIA inside of the shady CIA. Yes, this is like this. It's like a. Russian nesting doll of the CIA inside the CIA. That's even worse than the other CIA. So the Reagan Conservatives were certain that the CIA had been underreporting Soviet military power and Team B like was basically Ford gave them Team B so that they could get new appraisals that showed that the Soviet Union was actually increasing their military assets. So basically what we like, what like, I mean essentially like what would eventually happened with Iraq where you're like look, I'm not liking the, I'm like the non distilled information. Give me a bunch of ********. That's exactly what's happening. And one of the things that's fascinating here is that in essence this is a return of missile gap logic, right, which Kissinger helped get off the ground, but now because he supports the state taunt policy and that's like his big claim to like fame within, you know, his his career that he reached the top with the Soviet Union. He's on the opposite side of like a missile gap ******** myth, right? Birds, leopards ate my face, yeah. They never thought it could happen to me. Yeah. And then they came for the Kiss Singers and there was no Kissinger's left to speak for me. It's the same thing as **** **** Cheney speaking out against the Trump administration and watching his daughter get slandered and stuff. And it's and it's what it's gonna be in 20 years when, you know, Trump is welcome to the president's funeral and we're going, yeah, you know, Trump really wasn't that bad. I like the way he said we shouldn't nuke everyone on Earth as opposed to the next guy who nuked everyone on Earth. Yeah, I mean. Yeah, Jill Biden handed him a piece of peppermint candy. He's not that bad. So former CIA analyst Melvin Goodwin later said of Team B quote, they wanted to toughen up the agency's estimates. Cheney wanted to drive the CIA so far to the right that it would never say no to the generals, not how estimates. And again, this is the estimate. Like they're estimates. Pause this and listen to our episodes on the Dulles brothers and then realize that Chaney's like, I want them further right than that. That's not nearly right wing enough. That is the craziest *******. Thing I've heard yet, bug **** yeah, ****. **** Bang like I want more orifices. Not enough holes here. I can't stick ** **** ** enough stuff. So in December of 1976, as the Ford Administration prepared prepared to hand over power to Jimmy Carter, the CIA finished and released a 55 page report. Greg Grandin describes this as quote the rights answer to the Pentagon Papers, a nearly perfect negation of the document Daniel Ellsberg had leaked three years earlier. The scholars. The policymakers who composed the Pentagon Papers represented the kind of mint Kissinger disdained experts enthralled to facts. In contrast, the members of Team B were admitted ideologues. Its members, as Jay Peters Scoblick notes, saw the Soviet threat not as an empirical problem, but as a matter of faith. Ah, what kind? I mean, you just it's a church. It's a war church. It's also what's happening here, because this is they are against Kissinger, but as Grandon. Notes. They're using the kind of logic he used, right? Yes. Yeah, he's not. He's there with him on all of the murder crazy American ship. But they're like, he's just not racist. I mean, they're basically like, we gotta get rid of Kissinger so we can worship his tactics properly. That's exactly what's going on here. And in Kissinger's Shadow, Grant Grandin continues quote previewing what would become known as Dick Cheney's 1% doctrine. Team B interpreted threats with the smallest possible probability of occurring. It's likely to occur absence of proof of Russian superiority was taken as as proof of superiority team's failure to find a Soviet non acoustic anti submarine system was evidence that there could well be 1 noted somewhere. Makes sense there. Of course. I mean, it would be. Yeah, of course. How could you know that? There is no evidence that I have EGOT it and and, you know, won an Emmy and an Oscar and A and A and a Grammy. So that that's pretty solid evidence that I in fact have. Yeah. Yeah. Yeah, absolutely. You have all of that. Yeah, absolutely. So in December of 1977, the New York Times published a front page story on the intelligence findings of Team B, which provided legitimacy to the bogus and ensured the next decade of. Defense spending was geared towards stopping a rising Soviet Titan that did not exist. Oh my God. ******* Christ. Thanks. New York Times nailed it on that one. Star Wars on top of that, which is, well, yeah, Star Wars proceeds directly. Creation? Yeah, yeah, and it proceeds directly like Team B is laying the groundwork for Star Wars. Right? So while TV's tactics ran directly counter to Kissinger's current positions, they rested directly on what Grandon calls his philosophy of history. Henry had been an advocate on the value of intuition. In assessing threats and guiding responses, historian Anna Hesson Khan writes that they used Kissinger's own philosophy to quote, belittle, besmirch and tarnish Henry Kissinger. Had to be a tough spot for Kissinger where he was like, it's a shame that they've been vilified, but *** **** do I love the way they did it. So me, so me, everything, we everything. That's that's why when people, you know, you look at the current situation in in Russia and and everyone like, we gotta get rid of them. And I'm always like just. But just remember, whenever the US gets what it wants, it's always worse. Yeah, every time that it can be worse. Like he could be gone. He's a ******* monster. But don't be surprised if what comes after is really ******* bad and the idea of not questioning. **** like we are the country who cried war at some point you have to be like look, but sorry everybody, you're really gonna need to step up with a lot of evidence because you you constantly just ******* invention. I mean if you have, if you are forming organizations inside of ******** organizations meant to bring like that, if there's no submarines, it means there are submarines. Hmm. I mean it's just kind of like I and the fact that it's still effective. It's a constantly. Effective. It's never it's never stopped. It it it this is just a continuation. And it's even like this this is a domestic version of what we what happens over else. We just create more and more worse things. Yeah, internally and externally, it's what we do. Don't worry. We'll make it worse. Yeah, that's that is that is the promise that the United States makes itself in the world. Don't worry. Don't worry. We can **** this up more. Yeah. Lifeguard waits to throw on you. Yeah, I mean, we ******* created Putin if you go back. Look at it like we were behind all that ****. Yeah, it's looking at the at the bombing of Kiev and going you know what? I'll fix this if Bangladesh doesn't get COVID-19 6, right. Yeah. Which at some point is gonna be like, we will at some point solve something just totally on accident. Like, yeah. So when he left office in 1977, Henry Kissinger would never return to direct political power. He desperately wants to. He really wanted to like then he has always wanted to. Yeah, that's nice. Now, now I understand 2016. Yeah, he he really wanted it to happen, but he never quite made it, pulled it off. He eventually started a consulting firm, which he would rapidly grow into an 8 to $10 million a year business for himself raised. He makes a ton of money doing this ****. Of course, he goes into consulting like, oh, absolutely, sultants job is to give the worst advice. Yeah, and to make people feel good, and he's great at that. I'm a **** Oracle now. Walter Isaacson, author of the Biography Kissinger, claims that Henry was actually much more ethical in this. As life than most former government officials who start consulting businesses, he waited an unusually long time to start his business. He avoided for years directly connecting his clients to people he'd worked with in the State Department, like Low Bar. It may be accurate that he is more ethical in his conduct here than most people, but again, that's a low *** bar most of his business. The business he does in this. Can be boiled down to like, he's helping oil and gas and other extractive industries, so he's like, doing nice tropical stuff. Yeah, yeah. Yeah. He he's just destroying the world. Well, yeah, absolutely. There's a middle man for the people destroying the world. Let's let's let's be clear about yeah, you know, he's, he's, he's he's making he's he's making connections between people, whoever leaked it. And to be fair, he's pining to be in charge of it again. He is probably his most morally questionable moment in like, I guess a conventional sense. Is that so? Like, right after the Tiananmen Square crackdown, he shows up on Peter Jennings show to argue that, like, whatever went on, the US should not impose any economic consequences on China. And this is, again, not due to a principled stand against sanctions. It's because Kissinger was working on a massive business deal that involved the Chinese government and several large corporations. And here's the thing. He's he's working as a journalist at that .0 my he is a regular columnist for the LA Times and the Washington Post. And he advocates in both magazines, not putting any kind of economic, like, like doing any economic harm to China over this, which is like a ethical issue as a journalist. Because, again, he does not disclose that he has any of these business relationships. And it causes a minor uproar. It's one of those things where it's like, yeah, that's unethical behavior, but also in Kissinger. Terms like not even on the ******* radar, right? Those people. This is an aborted act, but congratulations on turning over a new leaf, Henry. Yeah, yeah. Wow, Henry, you've really improved. You really are less ****. You waited until after the thing to do something bad. Yeah. So in his post power years, he became even more of an international celebrity. He's actually surprised when he when he starts doing this job, he's raking, racking up huge amounts of money as like a public speaker. And he and his his like accountant. Expect the value of him as a speaker. Like, well, it's obviously it's going to decline over time. Well, learn that you're horrible. It just gets bigger. He just becomes more and more valuable as a public speaker now. For some insight into his life and what we might call retirement, I found a New York magazine article from 2006 quote. He bonds with Oprah Winfrey over their shared love of dogs. She recommended an artist to paint a portrait of Kissinger's lab and with Alex Rodriguez over their shared love of the Yankees. He and a rod had lunch at The Four Seasons last year. He and his wife of 32 years, Nancy McGinnis, spend every Christmas with close friends Oscar and Annette de la Renta in the Dominican Republic. Asked about the nature of that friendship, given the unlikely connection between a former statesman and a fashion mogul, Kissinger says they are dear friends of mine. They have no utility. I'm going to try to. Yeah, I will kill them. And some plans to kill them soon. Can we just, can we finally agree that Oprah Winfrey is a ******* monster? Yeah. I mean, right. And Oprah buddies with Henry K Winfrey. Yes. I mean, doctor Phil, doctor Oz, like she creates the ****. I'm not gonna stick around. Everybody. Doctor oz. **** talk. But the other ones? You got me. Yeah. Don't forget. Don't forget. John of God. Yeah. Right under your Suharto. Tattoo Gareth is is just doctor Oz High Fiving Henry Kissinger. That'll be honest this before he got his show so I liked him early. This is just, this was just like aspirational, you know? Yeah, I didn't know. It was a great pal. So Kissinger became a New York socialite and was reputed to enjoy the city social scene because, quote, Manhattan social life is more generous than Washington's political life. He should not bloodsport to pick where he wants to go out. I mean, he should have to, like, get food raised to his cell in a bucket. It's the same thing as that what the cook was a David Cook, the one that just died, but it was the same thing. Everyone just accepted him in those ******* circles. And it's like. He's a ******* moron. And then Charles Koch is the one who's like, you know, was like on a rehabilitation tour for like six months. Yeah. And and you and, you know, major news outlets are reporting like, look, he recognizes they ****** ** a little. It's like he feels bad. He feels bad. Give a ****. Yeah, digitalize him. So he was regularly, and I think probably still is regularly seen on the arm of Barbara Walters, who calls him a loyal friend. And in fact, she was hanging out with Henry. And his wife. One night at a dinner party when Kissinger endured one of his few public shamings. It came courtesy as the real the only real hero of these episodes, ABC News anchor Peter Jennings, who sees Kissinger at a restaurant and is ******* enraged and screams out how does it feel to be a war criminal, Henry? Peter Jennings, baby. And of course Peter Jennings is gone, so no life, he dies. Yeah, yeah, Kissinger probably, like, invaded his lungs. Yeah, cast should happen every restaurant, every into all these ******* people. Yeah. Jennings is basically the only person at Kissinger social level who calls him out and imagine. I mean, here's a here's a nightly news anchor on a major network. Imagine if you had that sort of vitriol. Pointed at some of these people that we have in present day who are, again, not only allowed to walk around, but are still in spheres of power. But but **** like we were saying about Dick Cheney, like, you know, George W Bush should not be. He should not be in public. He should not be releasing thoughts on Russian invasion. No, he certainly shouldn't be ******* panicking. Yeah, he shouldn't be ******* kidding me. He shouldn't know fingers. No. Daughter should not be on the ******* today show. Like, I don't know, I like strawberry in my Margarita. So I wanna continue the story, cause not with the story of Peter Jennings, like calling Kissinger out at a restaurant. And to finish that tale, I'm going to quote from the New York magazine again. The subject of Kissinger's past sins was very much in the air at the time. Judges in both France and Spain were seeking Kissinger for questioning as the long simmering debate over his connection to Chilean general Augusto Pinochet's brutal killing of dissidents in the 70s returned with a vengeance. Not least in Christopher Hitchens, right? Ringing indictment. The trial of Henry Kissinger. These developments clearly rattled Kissinger, who had preemptively written a lengthy article for Foreign affairs decrying the dangerous legal precedent of using universal jurisdiction to try state actors for past actions. The same precedent under which German courts hope to try Donald Rumsfeld. The question, and the question by Peter Jennings how does it feel to be a war criminal? Stunned. The dinner guests, who included Time Inc editor Henry Grunwald, who also died last year. And yeah, and former ABC chairman Thomas. Murphy, Grunwald pulled Jennings. The comment was unsuitable. Yeah, that's really an unsuitable thing to say. It wasn't as unsuitable as ******* bombing Cambodia like, Jesus ******* Christ, this is the thing. Manners. They care about manners. They don't care about all the ******* bodies. And two, to his credit, when like Greenwald is like Peter, that's really unsuitable. Peters, like, I don't give a ****. He's a ******* war criminal. He doesn't say that exactly, Peter, but he says the emotional equivalent of that. It's such a bummer, Barbara Walters later said of the moment. I tried to change the subject, but it was a very uncomfortable moment. Let's talk about Cambodia reacted very strongly and hurt, Kissinger said. Nothing. Man, it really is like, you know it. You see this a lot when, like, protesters will go into events. Yeah. And they will, you know, they'll have a message, they'll have signs. They'll have something orchestrated set up. And not only will the politician and the people on the politicians dayus sort of be like, OK, OK. But the people at the event will be the ones who are like, you know, I like a congressional hearing. This isn't the time or place. This isn't the time. It's like, what? There's no time or *******. Yes. When the where's the ******* time place? What? What do you ******* expect? That's all we have at this point is that's the only thing you can really do is try to make them hate living in the world they're ruining. Yeah, yeah. It is a ******* mark of how ****** ** any kind of accountability to the political classes in our society that the most consequence Henry Kissinger ever faces is Peter Jennings yelling at him once at dinner. A man who's been dead for 20 years. 15 years. I mean when Sarah Huckabee Sanders was out to dinner. And some people yelled at her, I mean, you saw both sides. Oh yeah, condemning it. Some ******* dude. And yell at ******* Tucker Carlson from his lawn. He gets called terror. There are Republicans and Democrats who always condemn that sort of stuff. And it's not because people believe in public decorum. It's because they don't want it to show up on their ******* doorsteps. Right? Right. Because, yeah, they they don't want, like, that **** to come back on them. And I'm sure someone's going to point out Peter Jennings did something ****** **. He must have. He was in media for 9:11. He. Oh, right. He did 9/11. Was Peter Jennings. He flew those planes right into those towers. I'd forgotten about that. Gary. Yeah. So he died. That's how he died. Yeah, but it at ******* least he was there and and didn't mince words. Just like you're a war criminal. Not like, how does it feel to be here where American boys are dying? Like, no, no, you did war crimes, Henry Kissinger. **** you. Someone has to say it. In his many decades worth of declining years, Henry Henry has focused his remaining powers in an attempt to secure his legacy. In 2003, he opened up his White House archives to a British historian named Niall Ferguson, whose book also just titled Kissinger. I've cited a few times in these episodes. Ferguson claimed his biography would, quote, provide a warts and all. Look at the man, but quotes he made about the relationship put the light of that. And this is Ferguson. Like writing about how jazzed he is to be hanging out with Henry. I'm in Henry Kissinger's swimming pool talking about his meetings with Mausi. Young, thinking I must be dreaming **** in that pool. I know. ******* hell, Nial everyone. Now, obviously I have quoted from this biography because of the details the information Kissinger provides about his early life. It is not without value. It's probably the most detailed look at his childhood we have. It also only goes up to 1968, which neatly avoids the most controversial moments of Kissinger's life, right? Yeah, that's not great. Even when journal. And now we end this story. Yeah. And that was the end of Henry Kissinger. Yeah, blah, blah blah. Even when journalists and historians that Henry hasn't authorized specifically interview him, they are likely to find themselves enraptured or at least tripped up by his clever word play. Bob Woodward, who first interviewed Kissinger in 74, wrote he wants to control not just what he says, but people's perceptions of what he says. And it's kind of like 1 long book review where he is arguing with the reviewer of his book or his life or his policy. Seymour Hirsch was more blunt in 1983 when he wrote he lies like most people breathe. Wow now. Yeah, the most comprehensive biography of Henry Kissinger and the one if you were looking. If you're looking for just a book on Kissinger's influence in like, the US and how toxic it was, I recommend Kissinger Shadow, by Grandin. If you want an actual biography of Kissinger's whole life and time and power, I recommend Walter Isaacson's 1992 book Kissinger. I actually think Isaacson is too fair to Henry Kissinger, but. Even so, even though he clearly, like, does not wholly condemn the man, I find the book utterly damning. Right. Like the book condemns him, even if Isaacson doesn't. Entirely trying to fully yeah, such a ***** ** **** you have. No, just impossible to yeah, if you're accurate. And I think, I think it is pretty if you lay out the facts, that's it. Yeah. Now, the best thing I can say about Isaacson's book Kissinger is that Henry Kissinger himself complained endlessly about it. He whined to Isaacson's boss Henry Grunwald, who defended Isaacson and said he felt the book was balanced and down the middle. Kissinger responded. What right does that young man have to be balanced and down the middle about me? Ah, I mean, wow. Wow. It just it just shows you. I mean, yeah. Yeah. Like, he should never be in the position where he should be pointing out that other people are crazy. No, no. ******* like, you don't get to say that, Henry. Yeah, no. As New York magazine notes, Kissinger denies that exchange ever happened. Oh, I believe Henry. I mean, the guy doesn't lie. He seems like an honest man. Yeah, I bet Nixon still had him wiretapped. And here's a quote from that article that's very funny. I've never read the Isaacson book, he says, then quickly clarifies. I've read a few parts of the Isaacson book, which I didn't like, but I understand that there are many parts of the book that are very positive. I missed those, he says with a sly smile. That is so. That is so Trumpy. I know it really is right? Yeah, I didn't read it. I read parts one through 5 to 110, yes, Isaacson says. Kissinger wrote him a series of letters contesting numerous passages. My view, and this is Isaacson. My view, is that if Kissinger reread his own memoirs, who would be outraged that they did not treat him favorably enough kissing? Who wrote this? You did. Ohe, ohe, **** that *** ** * *****. I gotta get me. Kissinger claims to be unconcerned about his place in history. I cannot defect my legacy, he says. And what does he think his legacy is? I have no view, he says. I can't control it by what I say. I tell him I don't believe him. You're not in your 80s yet, he replies. Now, a lot has been made about Kissinger's purported role in like, the invasion of Iraq. He did apparently like urge Bush and Cheney to go through with it. I think crediting him with specifically with having an impact on that is not realistic because this is Bush and Cheney. By the time they talked to Kissinger about this, they had made-up their, you know, it's probably didn't push them into invading Iraq. It's like similar when like the Queens of the Stone Age have Dave Grohl on drums. Yeah, yeah, exactly. He's a player for sure. But he's not writing all the songs. I mean, Josh, yeah, he's got this. Kissinger's definitely the. The Dave Grohl of the of the Bush administration yeah alright great job and I I think that in rather than like actually being a meaningful role in arranging consent for the invasion of Iraq. I think Kissinger was doing here what he always did. He was sucking up to powerful people to tell them by telling them what they wanted to hear. And the best example of this comes from 2008 when during a presidential debate both John McCain and Barack Obama cited Kissinger as supporting their positions towards Iran. Both men held opposite views of what the US should do in regards to that. Country. Might like, you might expect like, and I don't think either of them is lying. I think they're both because I think Kissinger just would be like, yeah, of course that's the right call. Absolutely. So yeah, what, what would the start date be just so I can put it in my calendar. Good call, guys. That's great. You're both right. Yeah, we should invade them and leave them alone. Yeah. So, yeah, as a young law student at Yale, Hillary Clinton had taken part in outraged protests against Kissinger's bombing of Cambodia. As Secretary of State, she praised the astute observations he shared with her and wrote in a review of one of his books, Kissinger is a friend. And again, the astute observations are Kissinger saying whatever she wanted to do was the right thing to do, right? Like, that's that's what. That's why these people like, like him and think he's astute. He's not. I think he does today get kind of, like, looked at as this secret power pulling the strings. I think it steadies just like the ultimate **** ***. He's just like, yeah oh you're in power now. Yeah. Whatever you want to do is the is the good thing to do. Absolutely right. You know? Yeah 100%. I I always, I I would tell people like if you're if you're young and you don't understand what it means to see Hillary Clinton standing there with with Kissinger it's no different than in in 10 years if all sudden you're Democrat candidate standings to Cheney. You're like what the **** is going on and I guarantee you that lost her. A bunch of people didn't vote for her. As they saw her standing next to Kissinger. Yeah, I guarantee it. I guarantee. And yeah, I think though, when you're trying to talk about like his actual influence and like the ****** ** things that have been happening in the last couple of decades, it's lesson whatever advice he was giving politician airb, and it's more in the way he shaped the way the US government functions in terms of foreign policy. He centralized power and set the precedent of allowing the executive branch to execute military actions without consent of anyone outside the White House. And obviously there were like things that were done to restrict the power of the executive branch from doing that. But then those things were all undone after the like right like it's this, it's this kind of tug of war thing. But Kissinger, even though he did not set obviously the policy after 911 that that expanded the executive government's ability to to do military **** abroad. He did set the precedent of like how you would actually centralized power and that way within the executive and he made-up he he set a lot of ideological and philosophical trends that are still shaping the way the US government functions in regards to foreign policy today. And if you're looking for perhaps the most direct and succinct explanation for how Kissinger influenced the world of modern American politics, you can find it in this quote he himself wrote in 1963. There are two kinds of realists, those who manipulate facts and those who create them. The West requires nothing so much as men able to create their own reality. Wow wow what? Wow. To not to not be able to define realists. And you're good enough definite your two tiered. Yeah. Realism is absolutely delusional. Yeah. For neither of your definitions of realist to involve people who care about material reality. Yeah. You say in the first one I was like, oh, the second one's gonna be realists. It's like, no, no, no, no, no. Other one is realists. No. So that's Henry Kissinger. It's it's so unbelievable. And So what you like, you know, he really he his legacy, like you're sort of saying is not just directly connected to the things he's. Connected to because there was no prosecution for what Nixon did? No. And there's no prosecution for what Reagan did, and there's no prosecution because we never prosecute and we never actually hold any of these people accountable. You know, you do see the seeds of that flourish now. Like, you can invade. I mean, we're at the point where most people don't even know we've invaded countries we've invaded. Like, yeah, at least with Vietnam, people had access to seeing it and being disgusted by it. And then under Bush, it was like, well, we're not going to show the coffins returning. And you see, I mean, it's not just Republicans. You see it under Democratic presidents, too. It just is kind of more egregious at times. The Republican presidents, but you know, it's it's every president gets more powerful, does more and it does kind of boil down to they're going to be evil. Journalists and media need to recognize what their ******* jobs are. If you're in some of these jobs like it's, it should not be a popularity contest for access only. There should be. You should be beholden to doing good and and making these people held accountable because it's so relevant in what you're talking about with Kissinger that they just let the access to him because he became a popular. Figure completely blind them as to what was actually going on. Well, it's actually worse than not punishing them. Remember when when Obama was elected, everyone was like, these guys have to be tried for war crimes and he said, let we got to move on. And, you know, they were talking about torture and war crimes and everything else, but it went, it went further than that because they gave Bush like the Medal of Freedom. I mean, there's a picture of ******* Biden hanging on his chest and they also. They also honored this guy named Henry Kissinger. They shared the administration did honored him. So it's beyond not doing anything. Yeah, it's honoring just it's not even just him. I mean, it's just it's systemic. It's just yeah. And you know what? If you are, if you are one of these people, if you are a ******* anchor at CNN, like if you're Jim Acosta, think of how ******* popular you would be if you did just start using your access to just be like Peter. Jennings. Like, be like Jennings here we are craving this ******* figure, but they would be immediately fired. I mean, yeah, they would never be talk, but they would be. But you would also. I mean, having even a moment of that would carry your career, like if we had that Peter Jennings **** now. It would go so viral and people would talk about that person endlessly that, I mean, it's like, it's like when you know? When billionaires started competing over being philanthropists, you know you at some point. You're so far in the other direction that you're not that far off from just doing the thing that is you're supposed to do is going to be such a radical move. It's this. It's it's very frustrating. Like right now you have all of these big media figures, like moving their shows to Ukraine to be able to film shelling in the distance. And like, obviously to be a journalist covering combat up close, covering war crimes up close requires a lot of of physical courage. Those like Sky News reporters who got ******* shot and ****. The Daily Beast reporters got ******* shot that, but like being like Lester Holt, like having your show filmed with like shelling in the distance. They have massive security teams. They have massive resources invested in making sure they are in as little danger as they can possibly be. And more than anything, they are out there in doing it for the ******* clout. Because that that is easy to like pills like, I'm brave. What's actually brave is Peter Jennings yelling at Henry Kissinger at a ******* dinner party full of powerful. People. And making sure that for just a second he has a moment of accountability. And if one of them was willing to do ******* that to any of these goals, I would have a lot more respect than I would have them filming shelling in Kiev from a mile and 1/2 away. Yeah, yeah, look there. There was a Wolf Blitzer who during the first Gulf War put on a helmet and was in Saudi Arabia where Scud missiles were flying. And it's saying how in danger he was. The same time there were journalists, American journalists, in the ******* Baghdad hotel being. Being shot at and rocketed by American troops. And those guys didn't work anymore. And Wolf Blitzer got his own TV show on CNN or Brian Williams when he talked when he was like the way that he embellished his his story about like getting off of a helicopter and taking RPG fire. Yeah, yeah, yeah. I mean, I don't know. We could use another ginnings or two at least in this regard. Yeah. I mean, it's it's hard because it's like, what would you. I mean? What would like, you're like, we want like a we want a politician for the people. And it's like, I like that's like, that's what you wish for, but you like the step first is to just have these people vilified for the things they should be vilified for. Yeah, it would be nice if there was a journalist. That's the end of the state of the farm. Well, honestly, like this, this was, I mean, just ******* incredible and just such a ridiculous taking. He's a pretty bad one, right? I don't think, I don't think there's a worse American. I think he is the worst. Is he? Is he? I know that there was talk of like, you know, the countries of like trying him outside of, you know, not having him there. Yeah. But can he travel anywhere he wants or is he? Restricted he can't I I'm not aware of I mean there may be like one place that he also now like he's become like this watery figure so he's kind of like the T1000 where if you just get close to him he turns into silver goo and just can go through a drain or something. Yeah you can't put a handcuff around a pile of watery goo. I mean he's he is a big part like he he argues vociferously for why like Rumsfeld shouldn't be able to be charged and I think Germany it is and he's doing it like selfishly I guess then shocking then it would put Kissinger in danger right like. He does that mean enough loyalty to rummy, who he probably hates at this point? Although I don't know that Kissinger can take things personally, actually. So maybe like, I don't know, like, you know, he's like the Bill Walsh coaching Tree of war criminals. Yeah, I don't know what that means. Well, Bill Walsh, like, coached the 49ers and invented the West Coast offense, and you just see the ripple effect through the NFL for generations and decades. Yeah, it changed football. It just changed everything. And it's like, that's what he did. He just was the guy who's like, you know, I came up with a new. Offense, and it's like everyone's just reading off of that playbook and tweaking it. Yeah, that's that guy you said reference. Robert Y Robert. Football is when. OK, Robert. The title of this episode really Kissinger thought I love that guy Gareth said of but the football but politics I liked the two Yaz that preceded your. I don't know who that guy is. Yeah. No, I've no idea. Yeah. Hey, who is that? Yeah, it's like now it's like in basketball when Phil Jackson made the triangle offense that somebody had triangle diplomacy. It's like the triangle thing. Yes, absolutely. There we go. Yeah. Yeah. It's like, alright, alright. And offense is the opposite of defense, right? Yeah, that's what everyone says. That's what everyone says. In my opinion, it definitely is. You know, the team with the most points wins. Yeah. Well, for sure that's gonna be critical. Yeah, absolutely. And you know, when the overtime gets a first down that's really, that's that's causing a problem. Finishing. You've nailed it already. Absolutely. 3 pointer. Absolutely. That's right. A 3 point touchdown for Robert. Let's go globetrotters. Hmm. Well, honestly, thank you for allowing us. To enter your Dojo and mess around for a little while. I don't. Yeah, I don't know if thank you is the right. I think you probably I I thank you for listening to me read 31,000 words about Henry Kinnaman. Ohh, because we talked about it and I was like, I can't do it because it's not one episode. It's so many episodes. Yeah. This is like the minimum. I think you think responsibly cover Henry Kissinger. Like, we could have done another couple episodes. Hey, let's do it. You know what? Do it, Gareth. Yes. Just rip a couple. Yeah, we'll get a couple of photos of him hanging out with Jill Saint John joke about his hog. Yeah, let's take it on the road. We can get another 40 minutes of content. Out of that, I don't think we could just keep redoing parts of this on the road for a year and a half. The dollop and behind the ******** present three guys going through shots of Henry Kissinger at fancy parties and talking about the shape of *** **** under his pants. Honestly, honestly, should work. Looks like he was having a chub day today. What do you think, Dave? That's what the walnuts on the table at the only one I'm focused on. Look at those tennis shorts. This is how we make our millions. Well, genuinely. Thank you. I am generally super scared having having watched how Colin Powell was treated. Ohh yes, when he died. Be scared of how people are gonna react to. Yeah, just death. Yeah. Yeah. You're gonna watch liberals be like he was ******* awesome and you're just like everything about him was bad. Yeah. Yeah, W it'll be fun. Any plug cables at the end here? Sure. Yeah. Listen. Well, first of all, we've got the Kissinger. We should do Kissinger live and we should use the kiss font. Mm-hmm. Yeah. And we should also wear like the kiss makeup and we should just do Kissinger yeah. We we will be in Australia and America the best country on Earth it will be in Australia in the middle of April to may you can go to dollarpodcast.com for all that information roll over the place and then I am doing stand up in Australia and also over the summer. So you can go to garethreynolds.com for all that information and you can follow us on social medias. With our at I met Reynolds, Gareth Davies at Dave under score Anthony on Instagram, I'm at Reynolds Gareth on Twitter, Daves at Dave Anthony on Twitter and. Woo, alright, thank you for having us again, ************. Sophie and Robert. Yeah, everyone go. Pray for Henry Kissinger's painful demise. Yeah, let's have, let's all hope that Tim, Tim Allen takes him out somehow. He smuggled he smuggles coke into a party Kissinger's and it just blows out the old man's art. Or he just starts doing war improvement with Kissinger's character. Oht. Yeah, Kissinger would be the, you know, the the owl. He's the owl, right? Right, right, right. No. You got a bomb. Cambodia, Tim. Alright, as there's a good that's another day. Hi everybody, Robert Evans here and my novel after the revolution is available for preorder now from AK Press Org. Now, if you go to Akuressa org, you can find after the revolution just googleakpress.org. After the revolution, you'll find a list of participating indie bookstores selling my book. And if you pre-order now from either of these independent bookstores or from a K press, you'll get a custom signed copy of the book, which I think is pretty cool. You can also pre-order it in physical or in Kindle form from Amazon. Pretty much wherever books are sold, so please Google AK, Press after the revolution, or find an indie bookstore in your area and pre-order it. You'll get a signed copy and you'll make me very happy. Hello, I'm Erica Kelly from the podcast Southern Fried true crime. 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