Save the Date for These Upcoming Forums

 

Report of the National Defense Panel

Robust American Involvement Globally Needed, not Retrenchment

with

General John Abizaid

The Ramada, 9:00 a.m., Thursday, October 2nd

The National Defense Panel (NDP), co-chaired by former Secretary of Defense Bill Perry and former CENTCOM Commander, GEN John Abizaid, was established by Congress primarily to provide a non-partisan evaluation of the QDR (Quadrennial Defense Review).  The report from the Panel was highly critical of the Obama administration’s national security policies and of Congressional funding for the Department of Defense.  In straightforward language, the Panel slammed administration policies that sought to align defense posture and spending to the constraints imposed by the 2011 Budget Control Act and its Sequester provisions.

The Panel concluded that as a result of cutbacks in defense expenditures, “our current and potential allies and adversaries… question our commitment and resolve”.  The NDP also highlighted growing threats to American interests worldwide, including Chinese cyber and maritime aggressiveness, North Korean bellicosity, Iran’s quest for nuclear weapons, and the ongoing conflicts in Ukraine and Iraq.  Notably, the Panel explicitly identified the threat posed by “Islamic terrorism”, a term the White House has not employed.

In addition to presenting the conclusions and rationales of the Panel’s report, we will ask General Abizaid for his views on the ongoing conflicts in the Middle East, particularly on the threat posed by the “Islamic State” and the President’s strategy for defeating that insurgency.

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Whither “Kurdistan”

The Historic Kurdish Legacy and the Current Conflict

with

Dr. Jill Derby

and commentary by Larry Martines

The Ramada, 9:00 a.m., Tuesday, October 21st

The Kurdish people are spread out over a number of countries surrounding the Kurdish region in northern Iraq.  Recently, the idea of an independent Kurdish nation has received attention, although given the implications of that for Iraq, Iran and Turkey, it is difficult to envision that occurring.   Dr. Derby will direct special attention to the evolution of various Kurdish entities following WWI, and Larry Martines will assess the potential and implications of greater autonomy or independence for the Kurds.

Dr. Jill Derby has a PhD in cultural anthropology and speaks fluent Arabic.  She lived and worked in Saudi Arabia and traveled widely throughout the region.  She was recently named to the Board of the American University of Iraq in Sulaimani in Kurdistan.  She works closely with Barham Saleh, the former Prime Minister of the Kurdish Republica and former Deputy PM of Iraq.  Larry Martines is a retired law enforcement officer with deep expertise in global security and terrorist issues, and has focused recently on the geo-political situation facing the Kurds.

No need to RSVP now, but please mark these unique and exciting events on your calendars.

Summary of the Presentation on…

Deep Underground for the FBI

NSF members were treated to a most informative and entertaining presentation by Willie Reagan, former FBI agent who worked for many years infiltrating the criminal underground.  Reagan had a normal background– graduated from Notre Dame and then NYU law school.  He joined the FBI and did some criminal work in Miami and attended Chinese language school in Monterey, California.

Reagan’s life soon changed and he spent 30 of his 35 years in the FBI working criminal cases, including the Weather Underground, the Columbian Cali drug cartel, the traditional mafia, Russian organized crime, and the Japanese Yakuza.  Then Director J. Edgar Hoover was adamantly opposed to his FBI agents infiltrating these organizations, but Reagan persisted and his superiors gave him permission to drop out of society and become part of these terrorist and criminal groups.

He spent many years living in a commune in Marin and successfully infiltrated the Weather Underground Organization (WUO), formed in July of 1969 as a spinoff of the Students for Democratic Society (SDS).  Reagan was an active member of what was described as a Marxist-Leninist revolutionary communist organization and observed the group planning terrorist acts, including bombings of Universities and elected officials homes.  He was able to contact the Bureau in time to prevent most of the bombings and to assist in the arrests of the culprits.

He also infiltrated the Yippies, Venceremos, and later the various Mafia families.  He worked undercover for a Chinese group affiliated with the Hong Kong triad, then against the Italian Mafia, including the Gambino and Luciano families.  He infiltrated various drug cartels, including those from Columbia and Japan and was able to assist in the arrest of several participants.

Willie Reagan has said he is thinking about writing a book on his experiences.  We all encourage him to do so and look forward to its publication!

Save the Date for this Upcoming Forum

Report of the National Defense Panel

Robust American Involvement Globally Needed, not Retrenchment

with

General John Abizaid

The Ramada, 9:00 a.m., Thursday, October 2nd

The National Defense Panel (NDP), co-chaired by former Secretary of Defense Bill Perry and former CENTCOM Commander, GEN John Abizaid, was established by Congress primarily to provide a non-partisan evaluation of the QDR (Quadrennial Defense Review).  The report from the Panel was highly critical of the Obama administration’s national security policies and of Congressional funding for the Department of Defense.  In straightforward language, the Panel slammed administration policies that sought to align defense posture and spending to the constraints imposed by the 2011 Budget Control Act and its Sequester provisions.

The Panel concluded that as a result of cutbacks in defense expenditures, “our current and potential allies and adversaries… question our commitment and resolve”.  The NDP also highlighted growing threats to American interests worldwide, including Chinese cyber and maritime aggressiveness, North Korean bellicosity, Iran’s quest for nuclear weapons, and the ongoing conflicts in Ukraine and Iraq.  Notably, the Panel explicitly identified the threat posed by “Islamic terrorism”, a term the White House has not employed.

In addition to presenting the conclusions and rationales of the Panel’s report, we will ask General Abizaid for his views on the ongoing conflicts in the Middle East, particularly on the threat posed by the “Islamic State” and the President’s strategy for defeating that insurgency.

No need to RSVP now, but please mark this unique and exciting event on your calendars.

September 12th Forum

Deep Underground for the FBI

with

Former FBI Undercover Agent
Willie Reagan

The Ramada, 9:00 a.m., Friday, September 12th

In the turbulent 1960’s several revolutionary groups were formed with the goal of bringing down the United States, which in their view was a racist, war mongering, imperialist nation. They wanted to replace capitalism with a more ” just”, socialistic system. The Weather Underground Organization (WUO), which sprung out of the Students for a Democratic Society (SDS), was the most violent of these groups. They described themselves as a Marxist-Leninist organization, and received training in Cuba from Cuban (DGI), Vietnamese (NLF), and Soviet (KGB) operatives. They participated in well over 20 bombings, including the bombings of the U.S. Capitol, the Pentagon, and other military targets as well as fire bombing the home of a federal judge, at night, while he was home asleep with his wife and children. To this day they remain the primary suspects in the bombing of A San Francisco Police Sub Station which killed one officer, blinded a second and injured three more.

J. Edgar Hoover was initially reticent to permit infiltration of these groups. However, Reagan pushed to be allowed to go undercover and join these organizations which, despite Hoover’s reservations, he was permitted to do. In an effort to locate the WUO fugitives, Reagan dropped out of society, then surfaced in Berkeley with a “resume” of radical revolutionary credentials. He lived in a world involving clandestine communications, mail drops, and safe houses and ultimately he was invited by the WUO to participate in the bombing of the office of a conservative California state senator. Under their direction, he helped them build the bomb. He was in continuous touch with his supervisor and when the group was getting ready to place the bomb he gave the signal and five arrests were made. In the accompanying searches, 10 pounds of dynamite were seized in the “bomb factory,” as well as another 100 pounds in a nearby garage the WUO had rented, along with several hundred pieces of false identification and numerous firearms.

During his career he also infiltrated and developed prosecutable evidence against the Columbian Cali Cartel, the traditional Mafia, the Japanese Mafia (Yakuza), the Russian Mafia, and much more.

Please join us for what will be a very interesting discussion. A full breakfast will be served ($15 Members, $25 Non-Members, and $10 for students with ID and military personnel in uniform; free for WWII veterans). We recommend that you arrive by 8:30 to enjoy some breakfast, coffee and conversation.

You are encouraged to RSVP by clicking HERE. You may also RSVP e-mailing info@nationalsecurityforum.org. Just a reminder, after the forum, we will be accepting new and renewal membership applications for the July 1, 2014 – June 30, 2015 period. Forms will be available at the forum, though you can also access the application form by clicking HERE. For your convenience, we accept cash, check and credit card payments for both the breakfast and membership fees.

Save the Date for this Upcoming Forum

Deep Underground for the FBI

with

Former FBI Undercover Agent
Willie Reagan

The Ramada, 9:00 a.m., Friday, September 12th

In the turbulent 1960’s several revolutionary groups were formed with the goal of bringing down the United States, which in their view was a racist, war mongering, imperialist nation. They wanted to replace capitalism with a more ” just”, socialistic system. The Weather Underground Organization (WUO), which sprung out of the Students for a Democratic Society (SDS), was the most violent of these groups. They described themselves as a Marxist-Leninist organization, and received training in Cuba from Cuban (DGI), Vietnamese (NLF), and Soviet (KGB) operatives. They participated in well over 20 bombings, including the bombings of the U.S. Capitol, the Pentagon, and other military targets as well as fire bombing the home of a federal judge, at night, while he was home asleep with his wife and children. To this day they remain the primary suspects in the bombing of A San Francisco Police Sub Station which killed one officer, blinded a second and injured three more.

J. Edgar Hoover was initially reticent to permit infiltration of these groups. However, Reagan pushed to be allowed to go undercover and join these organizations which, despite Hoover’s reservations, he was permitted to do. In an effort to locate the WUO fugitives, Reagan dropped out of society, then surfaced in Berkeley with a “resume” of radical revolutionary credentials. He lived in a world involving clandestine communications, mail drops, and safe houses and ultimately he was invited by the WUO to participate in the bombing of the office of a conservative California state senator. Under their direction, he helped them build the bomb. He was in continuous touch with his supervisor and when the group was getting ready to place the bomb he gave the signal and five arrests were made. In the accompanying searches, 10 pounds of dynamite were seized in the “bomb factory,” as well as another 100 pounds in a nearby garage the WUO had rented, along with several hundred pieces of false identification and numerous firearms.

During his career he also infiltrated and developed prosecutable evidence against the Columbian Cali Cartel, the traditional Mafia, the Japanese Mafia (Yakuza), the Russian Mafia, and much more.

No need to RSVP now, but please mark this unique and exciting event on your calendars.