News24

Liberia's Charles Taylor 'was CIA spy'

2012-01-19 22:38

New York - Liberia's Charles Taylor, the first African head of state to be prosecuted for war crimes by an international tribunal, used to work for the CIA, the Boston Globe newspaper reported this week.

The report, based on information uncovered through a freedom of information request made six years ago, said that Taylor had a relationship with the US spy agency for years, although the details of what he actually did were unclear.

"The Pentagon's response to the Globe states that the details of Taylor’s role on behalf of the spy agencies are contained in dozens of secret reports - at least 48 separate documents - covering several decades. However, the exact duration and scope of the relationship remains hidden," the daily said.

The former Liberian president is awaiting the verdict in his war crimes trial at the Special Court for Sierra Leone in The Netherlands.

He is accused on 11 counts of war crimes and crimes against humanity on claims that he armed Sierra Leone's Revolutionary United Front (RUF) in exchange for illegally mined, so-called "blood diamonds".

The Sierra Leone civil war claimed some 120 000 lives in the 10 years to 2001, with RUF rebels, described by the prosecution as Taylor's "surrogate army," mutilating thousands of civilians by hacking off their limbs.

Taylor pleaded not guilty to all charges.

The Boston Globe report backed up long-standing rumours of Taylor's work with the Central Intelligence Agency.

According to the report, he started working with the agency in the early 1980s.

After he was indicted and left the presidency in 2003, he lived openly in Nigeria, which the United States considers a regional ally. He was finally handed over to the international court in 2006.

Comments
  • James - 2012-01-20 00:09

    Could not possibly be anything important.

      Refilwe IronMan Rakoma - 2012-01-20 04:59

      Why because its the CIA and they are a pure and honest originasation?

      Ann - 2012-01-20 12:18

      Who still says the conspiracy theorists are all daft?

  • Michael - 2012-01-20 06:05

    If he is as stupid as he looks in this pic, then god help the cia and how they use the info he gave them...

  • Graziella - 2012-01-20 07:13

    The bottom line is: If you want to survive, you have to be a non-arselicker or full-arselicker. Half-arselickers like Taylor and Gadaffi get their faces crushed by the Imperial yanki/anglo/franco arses. Wouldn't be suprised to hear in 50 years time that Mandela was also a CIA stooge.

      Squeegee - 2012-01-20 07:59

      Bloody agent! Who are you working for?

      Henk - 2012-01-20 08:25

      Haha so they recruited him while he was in jail? Like your statement about arselickers though.

      coryndonbaker - 2012-01-20 08:43

      there are rumours that it is not even the real mandela

      Deon - 2012-01-20 08:43

      Now our leaders are in bed with China, so "much" better? At least they are not imperialists and not after our minerals?

      Graziella - 2012-01-20 09:36

      No one can deny that the Chinese have a vested interest in acquiring access to our resources but that unlike western nations they do not come here with guns in their hands and demand that it all be handed over for free. Instead, they put their cash on the table and make an offer. Westeners are not prepared to make a better offer because they feel entitled to get it for free. Here are a few more things that the Chinese, unlike western imperialists, do not do: Force locals to give up thier names. Force people to give up thier own religiious practices, force people to leave their homes and on and on and on. Few in this country are aware of the way trade agreements, negotiated by stronger Western governments, tend to negatively impact African development. If you study GATT and other binding agreements African nations are required to sign in order to sit at the negotiating tables, you start to see the problems (cotton subsidization is a prime example). It is hard for the west to admit that it has never shared enduring technologies or knowledge with Africa let along fair trade relations. Unlike Westerners who just wanted to cart away raw materials, Chinese businesses are building industry locally. Refineries, chemical plants, plastics factories, garment shops, and all the way down to higher efficicency chicken farms and other agricultural projects. There is MASSIVE technology transfer to the Africans, all gratis. No claim of IP, no exobitant royalties.

      ben.nel2 - 2012-01-20 10:08

      Graziella. Please Google "China human rights abuses" and enlighten us on how much better it is than the "western imperialists". Also, you might want to consider that the "imperialist atrocities" are part of history, whereas the Chinese human rights abuses as well as their own kind of imperialism are part of the present. As for Mandela possibly being a CIA stooge....my only advice would be less TV / movies / conspiracy websites / drugs and more appreciation of your hard won liberties.

      Graziella - 2012-01-20 10:44

      The west's human rights attrocities are systematic and pervasive. Look no further than Iraq, Guantanamo. Dropping bombs on poor villagers is inhuman. Carpet bombing is inhuman. Destroting a country's water supply is is a war crime under the geneva convention. Rendition is inhuman. Extra judicial killings are inhuman. Need I go more?

      Graziella - 2012-01-20 11:02

      @Ben People lie and so do governments. What are secret government agencies if not conspiracies?

      ben.nel2 - 2012-01-20 11:33

      @Graziella . The Chinese (goverment) is full of secret agencies and have a vast spy network. Why hold their conspiracy in higher esteem?

      Graziella - 2012-01-20 11:49

      Who said I do, but was merely responding to your specif point about conspiracy websites. One does not need to engage in conspiracies to question the government, all one needs is a skeptical and inquisitive mind (and the "balls" to back it up).

      Michele - 2012-01-20 13:18

      Never argue with a fool, people might not be able to tell the difference.

      Graziella - 2012-01-20 16:50

      Supercilious wannabe smart-alecky one-liners are the preserve of fools.

      Anthony - 2012-01-20 18:25

      @Graziella, What you say about the Chinese , all sounds so great in theory. But, go and ask the Lesotho people how it is working for a Chinese company. Go and ask Michael Sata, Zambia's president, how he feels about about Chinese investment in his country. But you don't even have to go that far. Ask South Africans what its like working for the Chinese. Go to Bruma Flea Market,in JHB, an enterprise where over the last 20 years, hard working Africans built a "world class "African Art" Flea Market. Last year, the Chinese bought all the land where this market is situated. Ask the traders of this market, how they been treated , and have their busineses ruined by total greed You want to share you anti Western feelings on this site, fine, But don't talk absolute rubbish, GUTTER RUBBISH !!!!!

  • Lionel - 2012-01-20 08:33

    Not surprising; the USA likes to keep dictators as friends. Equatorial Guinea is another example.

  • Sechaba - 2012-01-20 09:18

    and gave Naomi Campbell diamonds

  • ivan.coetzee2 - 2012-01-20 09:59

    So what, let him rot in hell.

  • ivan.coetzee2 - 2012-01-20 09:59

    So is Jacob Zuma and Bob Mugabe

  • Mc - 2012-01-20 10:30

    So what? Osama bin Laden worked for the CIA as well and I think Julius Malema is also a CIA employee.

      Graziella - 2012-01-20 10:40

      In actual FACT, Bin Laden was recruited by the CIA to fight the soviets in Afghanistan.

  • ludlowdj - 2012-01-20 10:50

    People unfortunately have a very short memory and tend to forget anything uncomfortable within minutes of hearing it. Most third world countries especially those in Africa are run by US puppets, Gadaffi himself was a US plant who didn't tow the line. As for the CIA, well what can we really say of the Organisation founded using NAZI officers? other than its alleged to be the largest organised crime syndicate in the world rumored to have single handedly facilitated almost every single drug transaction since the Vietnam war.

  • ludlowdj - 2012-01-20 10:59

    The US contrary to assertions to the contrary made here is still the largest violator of human rights of any country in the world including China, the only difference is the US does it under the pretense of saving the world, and also goes to great lengths to ensure that non of its atrocities occur on US soil. As for China, their business practice is aimed at enriching China, not the country they they are buying from, the money they put down as enticement being only a small portion of the profits they expect to make. The argument that they are better as an investor than western countries also overlook the fact that their manufacturing and mineral collection programs use exclusively Chinese personnel, with locals only being given minimum wage menial posts. their response to strikes and go slows being to shoot the workers as reported in China and even more recently in Africa. Maybe the west should turn its back on Africa for 10 to 20 years, let China have the run of the continent and then see how Africa feels about Chinese money.

      Graziella - 2012-01-20 11:19

      If the Chinese model for engagement in Africa ends up achieving nothing, but does not result in Africans being reduced to debt slaves, it will still have succeeded a hundred times more than the Western model. There are as many starving children in China as there are in Africa. So it's up to Africa to practice good governance and promote the best and brightest to negotiate with the Han.

      ben.nel2 - 2012-01-20 11:45

      A Graziella. Watch this clip, it might help you to have a more balanced view: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ExWfh6sGyso

      Graziella - 2012-01-20 12:06

      My politics have been formulated by looking at both sides of the political divide. I can also link you to all kinds of sites and videos to strengthen my point but won't be doing so because I have studied history and can see what is happening currently. I don't proffess do know everything!

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