Creative Associates International (CAI): It’s Not Exactly the CIA, But Close Enough

CHEVY CHASE, MARYLAND — You have likely not heard of them, but Creative Associates International (CAI) is one of the largest and most powerful non-governmental organizations operating anywhere in the world. A pillar of soft U.S. power, the group has been an architect in privatizing the Iraqi education system, designed messenger apps meant to overthrow the government of Cuba, served as a front group for the infamous Blackwater mercenary force (now rebranded as Academi), and liaised with Contra death squads in Nicaragua. As such, it has functioned as “both as an instrument of foreign policy and as a manifestation of a broader imperial project,” in the words of Professor Kenneth Saltman of the University of Illinois, Chicago.

Creative Associates International (CAI): It’s Not Exactly the CIA, But Close Enough

Biden Says He’s Ending the Yemen War—But It’s Too Soon to Celebrate

Biden Says He’s Ending the Yemen War—But It’s Too Soon to Celebrate

Unfortunately, qualifiers like “offensive” and “relevant” do not signal a clear commitment to ending all forms of support for the U.S. war in Yemen, which includes targeting assistance, weapons sales (the U.S. is the largest supplier of arms to Saudi Arabia), logistics, training, and intelligence sharing with the Saudi-led coalition. Labeling Yemen’s Houthis as “Iranian supplied forces,” and making a commitment to defending Saudi Arabia’s “sovereignty,” echoes President Obama’s initial pretense for entering the war on Yemen in 2015. The White House statement that signaled Obama’s illegal entry declared, “In response to the deteriorating security situation, Saudi Arabia, Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) members, and others will undertake military action to defend Saudi Arabia’s border and to protect Yemen’s legitimate government.” In other words, from the outset, this onslaught was framed by the U.S. as defensive.

Related:

Biden to End US Support for Saudi Offensive Operations in Yemen

[2019] Former Intercept Writer Steps Forward – Is ‘The Intercept’ An Intelligence Operation?

Former Intercept Writer Steps Forward – Is ‘The Intercept’ An Intelligence Operation?

Washington Babylon has been running a number of stories this week by Tim Shorrock and I which raise the possibility — mine did directly — that Pierre Omidyar’s The Intercept (TI) is an intelligence operation, working in collaboration with the U.S. and/or a foreign government. I understand why some readers might be skeptical of that charge, so let me lay out here some additional information and why I think everyone should be open minded about the topic.