Carl Gershman, president of the Reagan-created National Endowment for Democracy, a US relic of the Cold War specializing in psychological warfare operations.

Carl Gershman, president of the Reagan-created National Endowment for Democracy, a US relic of the Cold War specializing in psychological warfare operations.

On February 28, Rank-and-File Review reported on the ongoing crisis in the Ukraine offering a cursory overview of the new Ukrainian leadership and its agenda. A day earlier, journalist Robert Parry published an investigative report titled “A Shadow US Foreign Policy” that shed additional light on several critical facts about the role being played by the U.S. in the region. Parry’s important article was forwarded to our editorial staff by a rank-and-file union member in Michigan within hours offering us additional clues to the nature of the situation faced by our trade-union brothers and sisters in Europe.

Although the crisis in the Ukraine undoubtedly plays into historical frictions between various ethnic groups – namely, Ukrainian-speakers making overtures toward Western Europe and Russian speakers which identify more closely with the East – operatives working at the direction of neoconservative U.S. private companies with finance from the U.S. funded National Endowment for Democracy are fostering these divisions for the express purpose of destabilizing the elected government. The goal, of course, is to foment a coup that will install EU friendly “pro-business” leadership.

On March 2, 2014, Parry published a follow-up article that implies the NED group is essentially operating outside the official parameters of the U.S.’s official foreign policy.  According to Parry’s article:

“NED, a $100 million-a-year agency created by the Reagan administration in 1983 to promote political action and psychological warfare against targeted states, lists 65 projects that it supports financially inside Ukraine, including training activists, supporting “journalists” and promoting business groups, effectively creating a full-service structure primed and ready to destabilize a government in the name of promoting “democracy.” [See’s “A Shadow US Foreign Policy.”]”

The article goes on to explain U.S. policy-makers difficult predicament:

“President Barack Obama has been trying, mostly in secret, to craft a new foreign policy that relies heavily on cooperation with Russian President Vladimir Putin to tamp down confrontations in hotspots such as Iran and Syria. But Obama’s timidity about publicly explaining this strategy has left it open to attack from powerful elements of Official Washington, including well-placed neocons and people in his own administration.

The gravest threat to this Obama-Putin collaboration has now emerged in Ukraine, where a coalition of U.S. neocon operatives and neocon holdovers within the State Department fanned the flames of unrest in Ukraine, contributing to the violent overthrow of democratically elected President Viktor Yanukovych and now to a military intervention by Russian troops in the Crimea, a region in southern Ukraine that historically was part of Russia.

Though I’m told the Ukraine crisis caught Obama and Putin by surprise, the neocon determination to drive a wedge between the two leaders has been apparent for months, especially after Putin brokered a deal to head off U.S. military strikes against Syria last summer and helped get Iran to negotiate concessions on its nuclear program, both moves upsetting the neocons who had favored heightened confrontations.

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If Parry’s report is accurate, we are once again witnessing the dangers posed by neocon rogue activities. What’s more, their hidden agenda is being subsidized by the American taxpayer yet bypasses the duly elected U.S. officials.

But because the NED group was designed for the specific purpose of conducting psychological operations, it is virtually impossible for outsiders to determine whether or not the effort is in fact the product of a rogue neocon faction utilizing a government “slush fund” or if they are designed to simply appear as a neocon faction to provide the Obama administration plausible deniability of their actions. Parry’s analysis errs on the side of Obama being genuinely misinformed which would imply that the current President is facing a situation very similar to that of John F. Kennedy when he was unwittingly being manipulated into a position that would force an invasion of Cuba. The result was the well-known Bay of Pigs disaster, which did little to undermine the Castro government and, instead, undermined the international credibility of the United States.

RAF Staff