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Greg Mortenson: Pathological Liar and War Criminal

Speaking of Debbie Menon – one of my favorite alternative journalists – she recently defended war propagandist Greg Mortenson, America’s kinder-and-gentler Joe Goebbels, in an email to Gordon Duff on which I was copied. Mortenson, the zillionaire author of Three Cups of Tea, made his fortune by peddling the Big Lie that Americans are in Afghanistan to educate the benighted Muslim savages and rescue the poor oppressed women from their evil men. Now that Mortenson has been exposed as a pathological liar by 60 Minutes, Debbie (and lots of other brainwashing victims) are having a hard time facing the truth.


Thanks for the great intro to my interview with Kourosh.

Mortenson is peddling a very insidious kind of war propaganda. “Let’s build schools for the poor benighted Afghan savages, who hate the evil women-oppressing Taliban as much as we do.” Pure BS designed to obscure the only relevant issue: aggression/occupation, the supreme war crime, which obliges all occupied people to militarily resist occupation. How can you build schools for people who are under a moral and perhaps even legal obligation to shoot you?

My mom gave me Mortenson’s book as a gift. I swallowed the bile for a couple of years, then sent her this yesterday.


* * *

Hi Mom,

I guess it’s time to tell you the truth: I almost puked a few pages into Three Cups of Tea.  And that was before this 60 Minutes exposé proved my BS meter was working.

It’s not nice to be ungrateful for gifts. But giving a Muslim Three Cups of Tea is sort of like giving a Jew a book claiming that the the Nazis actually loved Jews and tried their best to help them rise out of their ghettos by building schools for them.

The USA is committing genocide against Muslims and Islam in Afghanistan and all around the world. Three Cups of Tea is not just a stinking mountain of lies – it’s holocaust denial.  Here is the reality:

US troops ‘kept finger trophies’     

US soldiers burn Quran then have fun shooting live rounds at reacting prisoners

The “schools” this pathological liar is building are part of the genocide, like the Indian schools that wiped out Native American culture here. 


From 60 Minutes exposé of Mortensen

Mortenson (in an interview): One of the most compelling experiences I had was in July of ’96…I went to the area to find a place to build a school. And what happened is, I got kidnapped by the Taliban for eight days.

The kidnapping story was featured in Three Cups of Tea, and referred to in his follow-up best seller, Stones Into Schools, with a 1996 photograph of his alleged captors.

We managed to locate four men who were there when the photo was taken – two of them actually appear in the picture. All of them insist they are not Taliban and that Greg Mortenson was not kidnapped. They also gave us another photo of the group with Mortenson holding the AK-47.
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Questions over Greg Mortenson’s stories

60 Minutes, CBS

He has written inspiring best sellers, including “Three Cups of Tea,” but are the stories all true?

Greg Mortenson is a former mountain climber, best-selling author, humanitarian, and philanthropist. His non-profit organization, the Central Asia Institute (CAI), is dedicated to promoting education, especially for girls, in remote parts of Pakistan and Afghanistan, and according to its web site, has established more than 140 schools there.

President Obama donated $100,000 to the group from the proceeds of his Nobel Prize. Mortenson’s book, Three Cups of Tea, has sold more than four million copies and is required reading for U.S. servicemen bound for Afghanistan.

But last fall, we began investigating complaints from former donors, board members, staffers, and charity watchdogs about Mortenson and the way he is running his non-profit organization. And we found there are serious questions about how millions of dollars have been spent, whether Mortenson is personally benefiting, and whether some of the most dramatic and inspiring stories in his books are even true.

Greg Mortenson’s books have made him a publishing phenomenon and sought-after speaker on the lecture circuit, where he has attained a cult-like status. He regularly draws crowds of several thousand people and $30,000 per engagement.

And everywhere Mortenson goes, he brings an inspirational message built around a story that forms the cornerstone of Three Cups of Tea and his various ventures – how, in 1993, he tried and failed to reach the summit of K2, the world’s second tallest mountain, to honor his dead sister, how he got lost and separated from his party on the descent and stumbled into a tiny village called Korphe.

Greg Mortenson (speaking on big T.V. screen): My pants were ripped in half and I hadn’t taken a bath in 84 days.

Mortenson (in T.V. interview): And I stumbled into a little village called Korphe, where I was befriended by the people and…

Mortenson (in another T.V. interview): They gave me everything they had: their yak butter, their tea. They put warm blankets over me, and they helped nurse me back to health.

Mortenson tells how he discovered 84 children in the back of the village writing their school lessons with sticks in the dust.

Mortenson (speaking on stage): And when a young girl named Chocho came up to me and said…

Mortenson (speaking on another stage): Can you help us build a school? I made a rash promise that day and I said, “I promise I’ll help build a school.” Little did I know it would change my life forever.

It’s a powerful and heart-warming tale that has motivated millions of people to buy his book and contribute nearly $60 million to his charity.

Jon Krakauer: It’s a beautiful story, and it’s a lie.

Jon Krakauer is also a best-selling author and mountaineer, who wrote Into Thin Air and Into The Wild. He was one of Mortenson’s earliest backers, donating $75,000 to his non-profit organization.

But after a few years, Krakauer says he withdrew his support over concerns that the charity was being mismanaged, and he later learned that the Korphe tale that launched Mortenson into prominence was simply not true.

Steve Kroft: Did he stumble into this village weak in a weakened state?

Krakauer: Absolutely not.

Kroft: Nobody helped him out. And nursed him back to health.

Krakauer: Absolutely not. I have spoken to one of his companions, a close friend, who hiked out from K2 with him and this companion said Greg never heard of Korphe till a year later.

Strangely enough, Krakauer’s version of events is backed up by Greg Mortensen himself, in his earliest telling of the story. In an article he wrote for the newsletter of The American Himalayan Foundation after his descent from K2, Mortenson makes no mention of his experience in Korphe, although he did write that he hoped to build a school in another village called Khane.

Full 60 minutes story:

2 Thoughts to “Greg Mortenson: Pathological Liar and War Criminal”

  1. Anonymous

    I Just read the 75 page Krakauer piece, "Three Cups of Deceit"…The books are full of lies, and the organization has accomplished much less than advertised and been ripped off by it's founder, Mortenson. His reputation will be in ruins, deservedly so.

  2. Anonymous

    You said: "The "schools" this pathological liar is building are part of the genocide, like the Indian schools that wiped out Native American culture here. "

    I do not think that the issues regarding Mortenson's schools had to do with any ideological issues in the education – It had to do with the schools not being used at all, or having much LESS of a curriculum than stated in the books, or having very uneducated teachers. The Pakistanis angry at Mortenson are upset because he misrepresented them in his book.

    The people of the Baltistan region actually do not get whipped up in Taliban stuff. Many of them follow Agha Khan, a Muslim leader outside of Paris, and that guy made a foundation that had a more substantial impact than the Central Asia Institute. Have you looked into the Agha Khan Foundation schools?

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