Originally published November 12 2015
70 years after providing key technology to Adolf Hitler's Third Reich, IBM is now lending computing power to U.S. drone strikes that kill civilians
by J. D. Heyes
(NaturalNews) More than seven decades after the defeat of Adolf Hitler's Nazi-inspired Third Reich on battlefields that left much of Europe in shambles, U.S. technology giant IBM – which played a major role in all phases of the Holocaust – is once again in the business of killing.
As reported by investigative news site The Intercept, a secret brief discussing the Pentagon's drone strike program in Somalia and Yemen dated February 2013 was produced for the Defense Department by IBM analysts.
"On its surface, it's simply an analysis by the Defense Department's Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance (ISR) Task Force of the 'performance and requirements' of the U.S. military's counterterrorism kill/capture operations, including drone strikes, in Somalia and Yemen," The Intercept reported. "However, it's also what a former senior special operations officer characterized as a 'bitch brief' – that is, a study designed to be a weapon in a bureaucratic turf war with the CIA to win the Pentagon more money and a bigger mandate."
It's a safe bet to assume that the study outlined in the brief was an opportunity for IBM to show that it is capable of producing quality analyses specific to the Defense Department as well as for current Pentagon employees to network with a potential future employer.
Building target packages like a corporation tracks customersHowever, experts say there is more to the presentation. For one, it's a rare glimpse into the inner workings of the military-industrial complex, where assassination technologies and corporate sales merge, shrouded in lifeless language as dead as the target of a "kinetic engagement."
The IBM-Defense Department drone strike analysis relationship likely began in earnest in 2010, when IBM employees delivered a talk at the tech giant's Analytics Solution Center in Washington, D.C. Titled "An Introduction to Edge Methods: Business Analytics and Optimization for Intelligence," the intended audience was "Defense and Intelligence communities." The company's goal was to demonstrate how IBM could assist with "managing large volumes of data" to derive "invaluable" insights. The company already had an existing governmental customer: the ISR Task Force
The Intercept further noted:
Although buried in reams of corporate management gobbledygook (IBM, it turns out, is "Mission Focused" and "Performance Driven"), the talk's key theme was that IBM was offering prospective new government clients its "expertise in integrating business and technology services" using its "commercial consulting methods." That is, IBM was bringing what it had learned from managing Big Data for corporate America to the military and intelligence worlds.
Some things never changeAs is evident in the secret brief, the Pentagon's drone program is utilizing data analytics in nearly the exact same way that IBM encourages corporations to track customers. The only difference, of course, is that at the end of the drone process, the "customer" is killed.
The Pentagon's drone infrastructure employs Big Data to "build target packages" for high-value individuals. Drones try "to maintain 24/7 persistent stare," like corporations need "to get a 360 view of the customer."
After he retired from the Army, Gen. Stanley McChrystal made a sobering statement about the U.S. drone strike program: "...[A]lthough to the United States, a drone strike seems to have very little risk and very little pain, at the receiving end, it feels like war. Americans have got to understand that. If we were to use our technological capabilities carelessly – I don't think we do, but there's always the danger that you will – then we should not be upset when someone responds with their equivalent, which is a suicide bomb in Central Park, because that's what they can respond with."
As for the Nazis and IBM, The Huffington Post reported in July 2012 that newly released (at the time) documents showed the company played a "pivotal role" in the Holocaust in "all six phases: identification, expulsion from society, confiscation, ghettoization, deportation, and even extermination." In fact, the company's president at the time, Thomas J. Watson, was personally involved.
Some horrific things never change, it appears.
The full Intercept report is here.
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