Friday, February 5, 2010

Mike Palecek - GUESTS OF THE NATION (Chapters 16-21)

Author Mike Palecek has been my guest on "The Real Deal", an internet radio program whose archives are at He runs a website, together with Chuck Gregory and Ben Heine, which contains dozens of important issues affecting the American people. Much has been written about him on and other sites. I have endorsed his books, including GUESTS OF THE NATION, and he and I share very similar outlooks on life.

Mike Palecek is an Iowa writer. A former federal prisoner for peace, he served time in county jails and federal prisons for civil disobedience at Offutt Air Force Base during the 1980s. He is a former seminarian and during the 1990s was a reporter for small-town newspapers in Nebraska, Iowa and Minnesota. In 2000, Mike was the Iowa Democratic Party nominee for the U.S. House of Representatives, Fifth District, receiving 67,500 votes [29%].

Mike has written at least one novel every year since the turn of the century, all with political themes and many involving prisons and mental illness. His descriptions of small-town America are without parallel in literature today. Some of his book titles include: "Speak English" (2009), "Terror Nation" (2006), "Twins" (2003), "Killing George Bush,(KGB)" (2001), and "Iowa Terror" (2007). His latest book, "Guests of the Nation", questions the assumptions of post-9/11 America from the ground up, where the effects of the new Homeland Security State intersect the everyday pursuits of the hoi polloi.

Dr. Karen Kwiatkowski, a specialist on the Middle East and retired U.S. Air Force lieutenant colonel who spent her final four and a half years in uniform working at the Pentagon, has said the following of "Guests of the Nation":

Astounding, astonishing, and haunting, "Guests Of The Nation" offers an intriguing alternative to what the late George Carlin called the 9/11 "consensus reality." Philip K. Dick would love how this deft American novel captures our imagination and never lets go. Mike Palecek has graced us with a sparkling gem you'll read non-stop and more than once.

"No change seen in Obamas foreign policy" - K. Kwiatkowski

Mike has given me permission to publish here excerpts from Chapters 16-21. In my blog of 22 January "Mike Palecek - The Terror Watcher" you can find an excerpt of Chapter 1. The original illustrations by Michael P. Miller, Russell Brutsche, Allison Healy are alone worth the price of the book! and more - Mike Palacek interviewed on "The Real Deal" with Jim Fetzer (31 July 2009)

"Guests of the Nation" - Chapters 16-21
Written by Mike Palecek

Art by Russell Brutsche


“The hijackers were U.S. undercover agents. They were double agents, paid by the FBI and the CIA to spy on Arab groups in this country. They were controlled. Their landlord was an FBI informant in San Diego and other places. And this was a direct, covert operation ordered, personally ordered by George W. Bush. Personally ordered. We have incriminating evidence, documents as well as witnesses, to this effect. It's not just incompetence — in spite of the fact that he is incompetent. The fact is he personally ordered this, knew about it. He, at one point, there were rehearsals of this. The reason why he appeared to be uninterested and nonchalant on September 11th — when those videos showed that Andrew Card whispered in his ear the words about this as he listened to kids reading the pet goat story, is that he thought this was another rehearsal.”

—Stanley Hilton, former chief of staff for Sen. Bob Dole [R-Kansas]

We’ll help.
She jumped, or let herself fall, through the 94thfloor to the 93rdor 92nd maybe.

They held up arms and tried to catch, cushion maybe, something, but still they all crashed and rolled, and it felt like they would fall off the earth.
How high up were they?
And we are going to fall from this high?
What will thatbe like.
Oh God.

But they were together, arms around each other for a moment. They took that split-second, less, to hug and almost smile.

And in the next moment ... for to waste moments was sinful, there were only so many moments in a life, left in a life, save your breaths, conserve, breath fast, get the most out of each split-moment.
So the next instant was used up scrambling, helping each other up, lurching toward a door, maybe, over there, the stairs?
Head down, down.
They needed to get down.
Last moment.

Art by Michael P. Miller

The pops above became thuds.
The ceiling and remaining beams above exploded, down, out, up, every-fucking-where.
Then their floor exploded.
The world erupted.
They were shot out of a cannon that was a volcano.
The whole world roared, and time would now stop, be over.
We had had our chance.

God says he’s had enough of our shit.
The young girl in her first job was blown apart, neck, ears, fingers, toes, heart, lungs, whatever you can make yourself imagine, is how it was.
The parts which once had comprised the whole, the brain and lungs and eyes and being, shot out,
in all directions.
How would they ever find each other again for eternity?
Becoming dust, joining the dust of all the others.


“It’s hard for us to come to any other conclusion than that the 9/11 Commission was a political cover-up from the word go.”

— Patty Casazza, wife of John F. Casazza, a government bond trader at Cantor Fitzgerald, WTC North Tower, 104th floor. One of the four Jersey Girls, New Jersey residents who were widowed by 9/11. Member of the Family Steering Committee for the 9/11 Commission. Board member of September 11th Advocates. Instrumental in the eventual creation of the 9/11 Commission. Selected as one of Ms. Magazine’s 2004 Women of the Year.

• It is difficult to get a man to understand something when his salary depends on his not understanding. —Upton Sinclair

Did you know that Mohamed Atta received money from a fellow from Pakistan who was meeting with Karl Rove on September 11 in Washington?
“George Bush.”

“He was meeting with the President’s father.”
That’s right.
And all that stuff about seeing pictures of Atta and another guy coming through customs in Portland.

Art by Michael P. Miller

But … there aren’t any surveillance camera shots of them getting on in Boston. Or any photos of any of the hijackers getting on the airplanes. And their names do not appear on the passenger lists.
They were paid, or at least Atta was.
They take flight lessons in Florida to create a story.
Oswald went to Russia, handed out flyers supporting Cuba.
They do business on military bases. Oswald had FBI and CIA contacts.
Some have told us they are alive.
The magic photo I.D. found on the street.
Atta’s fucking last will and testament found in his car in the airport parking lot, with a list of hijackers, a Koran, a terrorist manual.

You believe that shit?
Remember that Colonel Prouty was in New Fucking Zealand when Kennedy was killed?
And he sees a photo of Oswald in the newspaper box as the guy who did it? On November 23, 1963 a newspaper in New Zealand, which is eighteen hours ahead of Texas time, printed facts about the assassination before they were known in the United States.
And on American TV with 9/11, within a half an hour of the first plane hitting, the newscasters, they know who did it and why and what our response should be.
And the British TV journalist tells us on camera that WTC 7 has come down, when in the background of the shot you can see the building is still standing.

Ever hear of Operation Mockingbird? Coo-coo.
Anyway, they’ve got it all figured out. Got it going on.
It’s Ahab ... Bin Fucking ... Laden ... Al Queda.
We need to invade Afghanistan and put in a new pipeline, and then invade Iraq.
Simple as that.
Anyone who isn’t with us is a dumb fucker.
It was the same with Oswald.
But we didn’t have the Internet then. People weren’t able to talk to each other. They just sat in their isolated living rooms and watched the military and CIA tell us what to believe, with sports and weight loss dreams and Coco Puffs, and sexual fantasies, to take our mind off it as quickly as possible.

Oswald was the one within minutes, hours at the most.
George Bush Sr. was there, too.
It wasn’t that long ago.
On the timeline of world history it’s still today.
George says he wasn’t there, that he didn’t work for the CIA then, but he was and he did. He was photographed standing outside the school book building after it happened.
On nine-one-one. Catchy isn’t it? He stays at the White House the night before and meets with Bin Laden’s brother and the guy who sent money to Atta the next morning, as well as the Carlyle group, investors in the new American century.
The hijackers got on board with the Bin Ladens, the only plane in the sky, plenty of room, all aboard.
Drinks all around.
Allah rocks.
God is great.
He takes care of those who … take care of themselves.

You believe that?


“George W. Bush's grandfather had his assets seized by Congress on Oct. 20, 1942 due to his decade of money laundering for Hitler. ... There were actually a number of American ruling familes who outright admired the Master Race idea and corporate control of society, and they frankly hoped this elitist-traitorous agenda would take hold in America. ...

“They actually attempted a coup, a takeover of FDR and the White House, in the early 1930s. Most of their names, these American ruling families, were kept out of the media in exchange for their agreement to stop obstructing legislation for programs such as Social Security for the elderly, the poor, and the sick.
“Copious evidence further indicates these evil ones and their 'proud descendants' have given shadow support for, and have experienced benefits from, the assassinations of key anti-war figures — JFK, MLK, RFK, John Lennon, and others.
“And the general public's failure to grasp the nature of evil further explains why most of the American population still cannot, and will not, comprehend the copious and obvious evidence of September 11th — that the attacks were planned and carried out by traitors high in our government — that they did this.”

— Connie Cook Smith, Speculations On The Nature of Evil, May 14, 2008

Well, at that point, Bill called for a little break.
We did the team bathroom thing.
Laura went by herself. She’s used to it I would imagine.
She came back with a tray of coffees, sodas, vegetarian burrito, hamburgers, fries.
I guess the burrito was for me.

Bill ended up eating it.
He said it wasn’t so bad.
Not in so many words.
Ron sat on the floor by the door to eat.
The rest of us scattered our junk on the table.
Afterward we all smoked.
In silence like soldiers in the field.
“Oooh!” I jumped at a buzz of Bee Gees bolting from the corner speakers.
“Anybody play cards?” I asked, only half kidding.

“Nobody plays cards anymore, do they?” Ron asked as if he really wondered.
“Nursing homes, prison,” said Bill.
Firehouse, I blurted, proud of myself.
“My folks used to have card night,” said Laura.
She smiled and then took almost a whole hamburger into her mouth.
I looked away, at the lovely concrete block wall, to chase naughty thoughts.
“Where you from?” Bill asked.
I turned and saw that he was asking Laura.
I thought he knew.

She smiled with a full mouth and stuck a pointer finger into the air, hunched her shoulders.
We waited until she swallowed.
She smiled again.
“Boulder?” said Ron.
She nodded with her whole body while she wiped her mouth with both hands with a napkin.
“Interesting,” said Bill.
“I’m from Ohio,” I said. “But I guess you all already knew that.”
Bill took the hint.
“The city,” he said. “New York. Brooklyn.”
“Ronald?” I said.
He stared at me as if he might be about to charge.

First he would have to stand up though, and nobody could move very fast from that position. And he looked tired for some reason.

I thought Boulder was this liberal mecca, I said.
“It might be. It’s a great place. I love it,” said Laura.
The FBI? I said.
“Nothing wrong with the bureau,” she said, brushing crumbs from her pants.
She spoke without irony, sarcasm, defensiveness, or onomatopoeia.
You have a big family, Ron? I asked.
He stared.
“I have four sisters,” Laura smiled.
“I’ve got six boys,” smiled Bill.
“My brother is in Afghanistan,” said Ron.

My parents still have the farm, I offered. No livestock anymore. Several cats.
Just as we were about to bond and group hug and hum Halloween songs and shit, this veil of silence descended, like we all discovered we didn’t really want to get to know each other. Did not want to expend the energy.
Which was fine by me.

“What’s the matter, John?” said Laura.
I’m under arrest, locked in seclusion, by the FBI, and you wonder, what’s the matter?
“No, really, I want to know,” she said.
I looked up from the floor and into her eyes, to the fourth grade playground, the volleyball team, the homecoming court, Quantico, and hanging in there day in day out in a man’s world with looks like that.

Wow, I said out loud.
She pushed back in her shitty chair, crossed her arms, then her legs, and looked at me like I had wet the bed and she honestly wondered why.
“How about Bert?” said Bill.
I must have looked puzzled because Ron added, “and Ernie.”
What about them? I said.

… Well, they were joined by a white, unmarked fighter plane.
Pretty clever, actually.
We saw a white plane.
It was big.
It was small.
Well, which was it?

Art by Michael P. Miller

But, it was also functional.
The cruise missile that hit the Pentagon was launched from the little white plane at about the time that an airliner was landing at Reagan — more confusion, deniability.
It doesn’t take that much.
A little goes a long ways, like peppermint raspberry ice cream.
The little white plane was fast — whoosh!
And busy — boom!

It also made the little hole in the soft dirt in Pennsylvania.
“What about the scattered debris?” said Bill. “Some of it was human remains.”
“We shot that aircraft down. It was headed for the White House,” Ron said.
Perhaps, or WTC 7. Maybe Camp David, right?
But where are the bodies if it was shot down?
I actually think that Bert & Ernie dumped bogus debris, remains, to make it seem like a hit. A hit to save the White House is one hell of a lot easier to swallow than what really happened.

“You think?” said Ron.
“You think?” said Bill.
“I thought you knew,” said Laura, dusting herself again, then wiping her hands with a crushed napkin, as Bill began to gather up the trash like we were getting ready to be done here.
Laura, I thought at least you understood.
Well, I said, trying to scramble without appearing to stall ... extend the moment.
Who would really know … besides someone on the inside, right?
I leaned over to unzip my bag. I shoved both hands inside and felt all over.
I sat up and saw three big faces: Ol’ Laura, Ol’ Bill, Ol’ Ron.
All with their hands on the table, waiting to find out what I had found in my bag.
I held my hands up to say nothing.


“John O’Neil was a friend of mine,” said Bill.
Bill recounted portions of O’Neil’s career as it intersected with his own and Bin Laden, Al Queda, all that jazz.
He became increasingly angry, standing up even, at one point and pacing.
I covered a yawn with a fist.
Ron did an amazing thing.

He hopped up from an almost-supine position, from his ass to his feet, without using his hands.
Laura knew all about John O’Neil. You could just tell.
S.S. agent, I said, right in the middle, or maybe it was toward the end of Bill’s monologue. I guess we’ll never know.
Secret Service.
WTC 7.
One guy died.
“O’Neil was in the towers,” scowled Bill.
I know, I said. I’m talking about something else now.
“This building is going down!”
“You need to exit immediately.”
Don’t you suppose that probably was how it went?


“Ever since that day, I believed the official story for all about two minutes. I always had my questions. My family had their questions.
“The government sent us the 9/11 Commission or I should say omissions, really.
They sent us that. I read the whole thing. As I’m reading the whole thing; it was just ncredible; the lies in this book. ... It hurt me to read this book.
“I researched it on the Internet and I seen — I noticed the little squibs coming out of the building as they’re coming down, ‘cause I seen it a million times, as everybody else did. And I said, “Gee what’s that?” I’m wondering what’s going on.
“A friend of mine actually gave me Loose Change. And I seen that and I was amazed. I was so amazed. When I seen it, seriously I broke down. I didn’t sleep that night. I was just insanely distraught about it. So I joined this group; 9/11 Truth. ...
“The truth: to actually be out there knowing that I’m fighting for something that’s right and something that’s American. That’s the American way. ... My father was a true patriot and I will follow in his footsteps. I’m gonna try so hard. I’m gonna try to the death of me to get him justice. Not only him, but the three thousand others that died, too. ...
“My father was a patriot. I’m a patriot and everybody in this room that believes in truth and wants to find justice is a patriot. Because this is America. It is of the people; for the people; and by the people. And that’s the America I know and that’s the America that I’m gonna defend, no matter what.”

— Daniel Wallace, son of Lt. Robert Wallace, Engine 205, Ladder 118, FDNY [Died Jan. 29. 2007, age 23]

He had all fucking day to get out of that building, yet he died in there.
Why. Why.
Why you suppose he died in there?
He knew.
You see the headline of the front page of the Postafter 9/11?
Bush Knew.
Well this guy, he knew too.

He knew there was a command center in there, too.
You ask why don’t more people talk, come forward, do the right thing.
This guy did.
He knew Giuliani's command center in WTC 7 was talking to Cheney in the resort lake home bunker and Bert & Ernie, guiding those planes in, with Silverstein and Pataki and the chief of police, can’t think of his name.

“There were only a couple of small fires,” said Laura. She adjusted her light blue blouse and I saw the gun in its holster under her arm.
I think this is where things don’t go exactly according to plan, even with Osama’s photo on the Amalgam Virgo logo way back in June — before Bush gets the nomination — Cheney and Rumsfeld with Reagan and Shultz and Casey — all that time.

Still, we’ve got a mixup over Pennsylvania.
I’m not sure what. Maybe it’s supposed to hit WTC 7 after all the President’s men are out.
But they still have that building wired, prepped, primed, and all that incriminating shit in there: emails, notes, computers — that need to not be there at the end of the day, as they say.
And so this one guy — well, John O’Neil’s already dead — but then he didn’t really know what hit him.

So we’ve still got our one guy, one good cop.
Matt Dillon saying you boys are not going to lynch my prisoner, not while I’m sheriff of this town, you’re not.
And they shot him.
First they tied him up, to a chair, hands behind his back, like mine here, not that I’m tied up, the chair I mean.

And they beat him, maybe his friends, maybe they were from another agency.
They beat the holy shit out of him and there was no going back. He wasn’t going home for supper once they laid hands on him.

They put a white bag or paper bag or shirt or jacket, over his head.
And pretty quick there was a hole in that hood with deep, dark stains.

They untied him and let him drop to the floor.
This sorry son of a bitch, this snitch.
They took back their hood and left him in there as they blew up that building, and it came down, and he felt the weight of the world upon his shoulders.
Giuliani, as he had been told, made certain the rubble and remains were scooped up and hauled to Fresh Kills.
Fresh Kills.

And the victors write the history books.
Fighter jets, white ones, fly over the Super Bowl.
What’s for lunch? For supper?
What’s on? What’re you doin’ tonight.
Not much.

That’s how it works.

Art by Michael P. Miller


“I never could make out what duty was myself … but I think you're all good
lads, if that's what you mean. I'm not complaining.”

—Belcher, Guests of the Nation, Frank O'Connor, 1931

• “We were there to record the event.” — one of the Dancing Israeli Mossad
members from the white van seen filming the crashes into the WTC, being
interviewed on an Israeli talk show.

He never got the call.

Never got the appointment to the White House.
He graduated in May, same as our young lady of the north tower.
Spent the summer waiting, emailing, writing letters, trying to remind Karl Rove about their little tryst, get him to return a call.

He takes a job in August as a fucking bank teller.
That day he’s watching TV in the break room, listening on the radio at his station, just like everyone else.
And he begins to think.
He starts to connect the dots.
He doesn’t say a word to nobody.
He’s still got the Audi. Dad signed it over without being asked.
He goes home.
He lives alone.
Nice neighborhood, apartment. Trees, kids and shit.
He parks on the curb, goes inside, opens a beer, bottle, pops some fat-free popcorn, kicks off his shoes against the kitchen wall, walks into the living room, clicks on the TV, leans way back to put the footrest up.

And shoots himself.
You believe that?
“The demo team, WTC,” said Bill.
Yes, actually, I was getting to them.
Darnell, I believe it was, well, he went to Iraq, got blown up almost right away by a roadside whatever.
Jose had a car accident.
The other guy we, I don’t know what happened to.
“Fender-bender?” asked Bill. “You know, car accident, c’mon.”
Oh, no, I explained.

He’s dead.


“I just embrace people that understand that four airplanes an hour and half between the first impact and the second impact with zero military response in the United States. It didn’t happen that way. It couldn’t have happened that way. You’re talking about the most intelligent agencies that we have on the face of the earth.
State of the art agencies ... And there was zero military response? ...
“It’s very transparent that our own president did not want to investigate this tragedy. And I’m standing before you today for one reason. The only thing that I can give my brother is the truth. That’s it.”

— Barry Zelman, brother of Kenneth Zelman, Oracle Corp., on assignment at
Marsh & McLennan, WTC North Tower, 99th floor

“You are a liar, and un-American. I served so fucks like you could protest.”
Thanks, I thought.

He must have seen something in the smirk on my face that he didn’t like.
Ol’ Ron reached back and slapped at me with an open hand.
I lurched back.
He missed me, but he threw dots of ketchup across my cheek and into my mouth.
I tipped over in my chair, flat on my back, feet in the air.
Well, I wiped the ketchup across my nose and looked at it on my hand and maybe I wasn’t thinking clearly.
I jumped up, tasting, and I should know that blood is not sweet, but I went into a tizzy.
And I smiled.

I winked at Laura and fucking jumped over that grey table with the hamburger bags mostly picked up by now.
With both arms out I literally flew.
I dived over and we smacked shoulder to shoulder.
I knocked him onto his back.

I wrapped my legs around his legs, and pressed his head to the floor with a little well-placed direct pressure on his throat with my forearm.
Pressing down with my whole body, and my nose almost touching him Eskimo-style, I looked deep into Ron’s eyes and he discovered fear I believe.
Ol’ Ron ceased struggling.

I stood. I did not hop. More that I got to my knees then used the wall with both hands to drag myself up.
Laura and Bill were standing right there.
They silently advised me to go back to my chair, please, and Ol’ Ron to lie there or stand, or whatever.
With my back to them I squeezed around the table, tucking here and straightening there.
I sat.

The two remained standing.
Ron sat up and pushed back against the door, as he was wont to do.
Laura and Bill did not appear to want to sit and talk any longer.
What happens now, I asked, thinking maybe I did not want to know. Maybe I do ask too many questions.

You now know everything I know, I reminded them of our previous agreement.
Ron got to one knee to begin to stand.
Laura came forward, leaving Bill in the middle of the room. Again he began to pick up here and there. The man is amazing.

She placed ten fingertips, clear polish, sort of a clam shell color, maybe, I dunno.
She looked me straight in the eyes.
She had really blue eyes. Maybe contacts.
“We believe you.
“At least, I do,” she looked around to Bill.
Bill now looked me straight in the eyes and nodded, sending a tingle down my spine in a way only
Bill Cosby could.
I stood.
Laura looked at the bulge in my pants. I put a hand down to cover.
“I believe we need to …”
“Hey!” shouted Ron.

He hopped up the way he does and started patting like he was on fire but not sure where.
“My gun,” he said.
Chopin began to play in the speakers up in the corners.
I winked at Laura and stuck my hand down my pants.
I’m just so glad to be able to tell someone.
I pulled out Ron’s black Glock 22.
Is this what you’re looking for?
I held it up.

Fondlng the piece with both hands, I spread my feet to the recommended shoulder width, pointed at Bill and Laura to remove their hands from their weapons.
“Over there,” I commanded Ron.
“Por favor.”
They shuffled over, together.
They kind of looked like calves in the corner of the corral for the first time, wondering what was expected of them.

“Now, you know,” I said.
The music reached a crescendo, I think that’s what they call it.
This is my favorite part, I said.
And we waited.
I’m not sure who was playing the piece, what band or group or whatever they call it.
But they were pretty good.

There was a rhythm, and I felt a part of the whole, and it was all kind of unreal because of the music and I kind of wondered if it was really happening.

But there were these three frightened people, real folks, standing in this corner of this forgotten room of this American airport.
And here I was with this gun, in my own hands, pointed at them.
And it really is such a beautiful country, just a gorgeous time of year. We love where we are, great town, nice people.
Except somebody. Some gi-normous asshole Goober!
Keeps running his power saw at night and stacking bodies next to my garage.
All night long.

And just before light he takes them away.
I’m just glad to have a job, something interesting to do. My wife loves me and my kids go to a good school.
As long as I go to work every day, everything stays on track.
Do … Do-Do-Do-Do-Do-DO-DO!

We’ve got nice neighbors and this weekend should be fun, with the ball game and well, I’ve got a fix-up project in the upstairs bathroom that I’m actually looking forward to.
Here it comes.
And I have my part to play.
The show must go on.
Oh, Ron.


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