Latest Event Updates
One day before the 5th anniversary of 9/11, I spent the hour with Paul Thompson. We talked about 9/11, his book and a new documentary he is featured in. As part of the introduction to show I read parts of an article by John W Dean. The article is posted in the ‘Mentioned on Air’ section.
Paul Thompson is the author of The Terror Timeline, A Comprehensive Chronicle of the Road to 9/11 and America’s Response:
Paul is also featured prominently in a new documentary:
In 9/11 Press for Truth, five of the most prominent members of the Family Steering Committee tell their story for the first time, providing the most powerful argument yet for why 9/11 still needs to be investigated. The documentary is based in part on Paul Thompson’s Complete 9/11 Timeline.
This week’s feature interview is with John W. Dean and is followed by an interview with Trita Parsi
Conservatives without Conscience – John Dean:
John W. Dean was White House Counsel to U.S. President Richard Nixon from July 1970 until April 1973. As White House Counsel, he became deeply involved in events leading to the Watergate first break-in and the subsequent Watergate scandal cover up, even referred to as “master manipulator of the cover up” by the FBI, and went on to become the star witness of the Watergate prosecution.
He was subsequently employed as the chief counsel to the Republican members of the Judiciary Committee in the United States House of Representatives. A National Commission on the Reform of Federal Criminal Law was created in 1967: Dean was appointed its associate director. He volunteered to write position papers on crime for Nixon’s presidential campaign in 1968. The following year he became an Associate Deputy at the office of the Attorney General of the United States in the Nixon administration and later became counsel to the president after the previous holder of this post John Ehrlichman became the president’s chief domestic adviser.
Dean has been on the Monitor several times already. This time Mark Bebawi spends 30+ minutes talking about his latest book: Conservatives without Conscience. Viking Adult. ISBN 0670037745.
Dr. Trita Parsi is the author of the forthcoming book Treacherous Triangle – The Secret Dealings of Iran, Israel and the United States (Yale University Press, 2007.)He wrote his Doctoral thesis on Israeli-Iranian relations under Professor Francis Fukuyama (and Drs. Zbigniew Brzezinski, R. K. Ramazani, Jakub Grygiel, Charles Doran) at Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies while heading the largest Iranian-American organization in the US, the National Iranian American Council (NIAC).Mark Bebawi talks to Parsi about the latest developments in the Iran uranium enrichment issue, the offers and counter-offers at the UN and the prospects of a resolution of the issue.
Three guests tonight: the British terror plot; federal judge rebukes NSA spying
After the headlines, Mark Bebawi talks to Craig Murray:
Craig Murray was ambassador to Uzbekistan, and was recalled as ambassador in 2004
after voicing concerns about torture by the Uzbek authorities. He published
secret documents on his website relating to torture policies of Britain.
Mark Bebawi will be talking with him about the news that a terror plot involving airplanes and liquids was broken up by British authorities. Murray has been skeptical of elements of the story.
Murder in Samarkand – A British Ambassador’s Controversial Defiance of Tyranny in the War on Terror (released in Britain in June 2006)
Ray McGovern is a frequent Intelligence Analyst guest on The Monitor. He arrived in Texas today to take part in Discussion of Findings of International Commission of Inquiry on Crimes Against Humanity Committed by the Bush Administration.
Ray McGovern’s 27-year career as a CIA analyst spanned administrations from John F. Kennedy to George H. W. Bush. Ray is now co-director of the Servant Leadership School, which provides training and other support for those seeking ways to be in relationship with the marginalized poor. The School is one of ten Jubilee Ministries, not-for-profit organizations inspired by the ecumenical Church of the Saviour and established in an inner-city neighborhood in Washington, DC.
The department Ray heads at the School deals with the biblical injunction to “speak truth to power,” and this, together with his experience in intelligence analysis, accounts for his various writings and media appearances over the past year. His focus dovetails nicely with the passage carved into the marble entrance to CIA Headquarters: “You will know the truth, and the truth will set you free”—the ethic mandating that CIA analysts were to “tell it like it is” without fear or favor.
In January 2003, when it became clear that that ethic was in serious jeopardy, a handful of intelligence community alumni/ae, including Ray, created Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity. VIPS now includes over 35 former professionals from CIA, the Defense Intelligence Agency, the Department of State’s Bureau of Intelligence and Research, Army Intelligence, the FBI, and the National Security Agency. VIPS’ first effort (of ten thus far) was a same-day critique of Secretary of State Colin Powell’s address to the UN on February 5.
In addition to co-authoring some of VIPS’ issuances, Ray has published some 20 op-eds over the past year on intelligence-related issues. These have appeared in newspapers and journals around the country like The Birmingham News, The Boston Globe, The Christian Science Monitor, The Miami Herald, Die Sueddeutsche Zeitung, The International Herald Tribune, and Der Berliner Tagespiegel, for example.
Over the past several months, he and his VIPS colleagues have made numerous TV, radio and lecture appearances in the US and Europe. They also have appeared in several recent video documentaries—notably, “Uncovered: the Whole Truth About the Iraq War” (Robert Greenwald) and “Break the Silence: Truth and Lies in the War on Terror” (John Pilger).
Ray’s duties at CIA included chairing National Intelligence Estimates and preparing the President’ Daily Brief (PDB). These, the most authoritative genres of intelligence reporting, have been the focus of press reporting on “weapons of mass destruction” in Iraq and on what the president was told before 9/11. During the mid-eighties, Ray was one of the senior analysts conducting early morning briefings of the PDB one-on-one with the Vice President, the Secretaries of State and Defense, the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs, and the Assistant to the President for National Security Affairs.
At his retirement ceremony, Ray received the Intelligence Commendation Medal and a letter from then-president George H. W. Bush wishing him well in his transition to non-profit work in inner-city Washington. Ray served on the board of Bread for the City from 1989-94, the latter two years as president, before becoming co-director of the Servant Leadership School.
Law professor Marjorie Cohn is a frequent legal analyst on The Monitor.
She was on the Monitor last month to discuss the major Supreme Court decision relating to rights of those detained at Guantánamo. “Congress has not issued the executive a ‘blank check,'” Justice Stephen Breyer wrote. The court ruled 5 to 3, rejecting the administration’s claims that in wartime Bush could basically hold whomever he wanted for as long as he wanted, without having to deal with complications such as due process and legal representation.
This week, Monitor Mark Bebawi will discuss with her the clear rebuke of Judge Anna Diggs Taylor of the US District Court in Detroit against the Bush administration’s warrantless eavesdropping. Judge Taylor ruled that Bush’s eavesdropping program is in violation of the Fourth Amendment as well as the 1978 Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA). The Bush administration immediately appealed the ruling.
Majorie Cohn is a professor of law at Thomas Jefferson School of Law, where she teaches criminal law and procedure, evidence, and international human rights law. She lectures throughout the world on international human rights and US foreign policy. Professor Cohn writes columns for the Los Angeles Daily Journal and the San Francisco Daily Journal, is a news consultant for CBS News, and a legal analyst for Court TV. She provides legal and political commentary on BBC, CNN, MSNBC, Fox News, NPR and Pacifica Radio.
Co-author of the book Cameras in the Courtroom: Television and the Pursuit of Justice, Professor Cohn is the President-elect of the National Lawyers Guild. She was a legal observer in Iran on behalf of the International Association of Democratic Lawyers, and she has participated in delegations to Cuba, China and Yugoslavia. She lived in Mexico and is fluent in Spanish.
The Constitution: Checking a Would-Be King By Ray McGovern
This week’s show affected by KPFT’s pledge drive. We have one interview for the show:
Pokey Anderson talks to Paul Lehto about his campaign for clean elections. Paul’s Bio is here.
We’re back to a more normal sounding show on the 20th.
Alternative Media – Raw Story; Lebanon and the UN
LARISA ALEXANDROVNA, Managing News Editor for Raw Story, on alternative media and what’s being missed
Monitor co-host Pokey Anderson will talk with Larisa Alexandrovna today. Larisa, who was raised Jewish, will take a look at the uproar about Mel Gibson’s anti-Semitic comments, and what the media barons AREN’T looking at. (See her piece below, “Mirror Mirror.”) We’ll take a look at the evolving position of alternative media in the U.S., and some of the stories she’s following.Larisa Alexandrovna is a journalist, essayist and poet. She is managing news editor for Raw Story, and contributes regularly to other publications in the alternative press. She spent part of her childhood in a part of the former Soviet Union which is now Ukraine, and speaks fluent Russian.
Her work is cited by mass media outlets such as Rolling Stone, New York Times, Mother Jones, and other notable publications. She is best known for her reporting on domestic intelligence issues and foreign military affairs. For the past year she has been focused on the build up for war with Iran.
“Mirror Mirror – The Passion of Hypocrites”
by Larisa Alexandrovna
Read it here“US military, intelligence officials raise concern about possible preparations for Iran strike”
by Larisa Alexandrovna
May 11, 2006
Read it here
QUOTES by Larisa Alexandrovna:
“This is after all an administration that writes its own news and disseminates it.”
“The ‘values voter’ is and has always been a propaganda concept, sold and bought by the mass media to justify the inexcusable and twisted ‘compassionate’ authoritarian agenda.”
ROBERT NAIMAN of Just Foreign Policy on Lebanon and the U.N.
Monitor co-host Mark Bebawi welcomes Robert Naiman to the Monitor. They’ll be talking about about UN resolutions, their implementation and the security council veto framed in the context of events in Lebanon.Naiman is national coordinator of the new D.C.-based advocacy group Just Foreign Policy, which issued a statement today saying:
“Under international law the UN Security Council is supposed to act to stop crimes against peace but [it] cannot do so in this case because it is paralyzed by the veto of the Bush administration, which opposes an immediate cease-fire and is backed in this position by the United Kingdom. However, under resolution 377, ‘Uniting for Peace,’ the UN General Assembly can act when the Security Council fails to do so. This procedure has been used 10 times in the history of the UN, often at the initiative of the United States.”
Just Foreign PolicyRELATED ARTICLE:
“A Road to Peace in Lebanon?”
Jeremy Brecher and Brendan Smith
July 27, 2006
Read it hereQUOTES:
“We are circulating a petition calling for the UN General Assembly to act to bring about an immediate cease-fire in Lebanon, Israel and Gaza. Any UN member country could put this forward. Even a significant movement towards the convening of the General Assembly to consider an immediate, unconditional cease-fire will put significant pressure on the major powers to support an immediate cease-fire.”
Just Foreign Policy: “This critical role of foreign policy in our domestic politics also opens up the opportunity that people who are more concerned with domestic issues such as health care, poverty, or civil liberties will begin to see that progress on any of these issues will be extremely difficult, if not impossible, so long as our current foreign policy remains in place.”
SIBEL EDMONDS on whistleblowers and NSA surveillance
Mark Bebawi welcomes Sibel Edmonds back to the Monitor. She is a former Middle Eastern language specialist hired by the FBI shortly after 9/11. She was fired in 2002 after reporting serious security breaches and misconduct in the agency’s translation program. She has alleged not only FBI incompetence, but that high crimes are being covered up to protect a select few.She challenged her retaliatory dismissal in court, but the district court dismissed her case when Attorney General John Ashcroft invoked the so-called state secrets privilege. Ashcroft even retroactively classified material that had been public in 2002 Senate hearings on Edmonds’ allegations.The American Civil Liberties Union got involved, and said that the government is abusing the “state secrets privilege” to silence employees who expose national security blunders. After a number of legal maneuvers and appeals, the case was dismissed in 2005 with no opinion provided; the case hearing was so secret that even Edmonds was not allowed in the courtroom. This was followed by the Supreme Court declining to review it. Sibel Edmonds is president of the National Security Whistleblowers Coalition. That group is backing former intelligence analyst Russell Tice, who was dismissed by the National Security Agency in May 2005. Tice worked on top-secret satellite intelligence collection programs. Tice has said he spoke to reporters for the NY Times prior to the newspaper’s story in December that disclosed the NSA program that intercepts Americans’ telephone calls and e-mails without a court’s approval.
RUSSELL TICE – whistleblower, subject of a subpoena
Russell Tice received a subpoena a few days ago to testify next Wednesday to a grand jury. “The grand jury is conducting an investigation of possible violations of federal criminal laws involving the unauthorized disclosure of classified information,” according to a letter that accompanied the subpoena. The location of the grand jury, the Eastern District of Virginia, “has often been chosen by the Justice Department for national security cases because the federal court there is generally thought to be favorable to the government,” according to the NY Times.In response to the subpoena, Tice said to the NY Times, ““I feel this is an intimidation tactic aimed at me and anyone who’s considering dropping a dime on criminal activity by the government.”
National Security Whistleblowers Coalition
“Ex-NSA Officer Subpoenaed in Leaks Case”
By Mark Sherman
AP; Washington Post
Friday, July 28, 2006
Blogger GLENN GREENWALD on the presidential power grab
Pokey Anderson will discuss presidential overreach and other Constitutional issues with Glenn Greenwald. She will also ask him about whether his success as a blogger and author can serve as a model for other efforts to counter the pro-Bush media chorus.Greenwald is a Constitutional law attorney, and author of the political blog, “Unclaimed Territory.”In about eight months, he went from blogger to author to bestselling author — his book went to the No. 1 spot on Amazon’s best-seller charts even before advance copies were printed. The book is a reasoned yet unflinching look at presidential overreach: “How Would a Patriot Act: Defending America from a President Run Amok.” Greenwald has written for American Conservative magazine and appeared on a variety of television and radio programs, including C-Span’s “Washington Journal,” Air America’s “Majority Report” and Public Radio International’s “To the Point.” His reporting and analysis have been credited in The Los Angeles Times, The Washington Post, Salon, Slate and a variety of other print and online publications. Glenn splits his time between New York City and Brazil.
“How Would a Patriot Act? Defending American Values from a President Run Amok”
Working Assets Publishing (May 15, 2006)
“Over the past five years, a creeping extremism has taken hold of our federal government, and it is threatening to radically alter our system of government and who we are as a nation. This extremism is neither conservative nor liberal in nature, but is instead driven by theories of unlimited presidential power that are wholly alien, and antithetical, to the core political values that have governed this country since its founding.”
It appears that a satire based Wiki site, Encyclopedia Dramatica, accidentally uncovered that a Wikipedia administrator was an employee of the Department of Homeland Security and exposed it, after they learned he was suppressing possible evidence of the 9/11 attacks on Wikipedia articles. In response, that admin and others organized to get it quickly removed removed from Wikipedia. Full timeline is compiled here. Why is a USDHS employee suppressing information on Wikipedia?
Hat tip to MarkM for the link and story