Author Archives: Robert Gore

The Empire’s War On Oppositional Journalism Continues To Escalate, by Caitlin Johnstone

The empire of lies’ war on truth grows increasingly desperate. From Caitlin Johnstone at medium.com:

Journalist Glenn Greenwald has been charged by the Bolsonaro government in Brazil with the same prosecutorial angle used by the US to target WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange.

Per The New York Times:

Citing intercepted messages between Mr. Greenwald and the hackers, prosecutors say the journalist played a “clear role in facilitating the commission of a crime.”

For instance, prosecutors contend that Mr. Greenwald encouraged the hackers to delete archives that had already been shared with The Intercept Brasil, in order to cover their tracks.

Prosecutors also say that Mr. Greenwald was communicating with the hackers while they were actively monitoring private chats on Telegram, a messaging app. The complaint charged six other individuals, including four who were detained last year in connection with the cellphone hacking.

This argument is essentially indistinguishable from the argument currently being used by the Trump administration in charging Assange with 17 counts of violating the Espionage Act. The US Department of Justice alleges that Assange attempted to provide Private Manning with advice and assistance in covering her tracks while leaking documents she already had access to, therefore making Assange party to a conspiracy against the United States.

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The Big Sleep, by James Howard Kunstler

Let’s hope that witnesses are called during the impeachment trial, especially by Trump’s defense team. From James Howard Kunstler at kunstler.com:

You have to wonder how many Democratic senators spend the long hours of impeachment fantasizing how to end the misery of listening to Rep. Adam Schiff deliver the party’s funeral oration. Please God, hurl a lightning bolt at the podium… bring down a chunk of the fine old coffered ceiling where he stands and prates about a Russian invasion of Malibu… send a coral snake up the leg of his trousers…!

It was so bad that his California counterpart, Senator Dianne Feinstein, just up-and-split late Wednesday. Elizabeth Warren has been seen furiously doodling maps of all the primary precincts she is failing to visit in her confinement. Bernie Sanders imagines himself wielding thirty inches of re-bar upside Mr. Schiff’s skull, while Amy Klobuchar pops her third Xanax of the evening. You have no idea what mental tribulation the House impeachment manager supreme is visiting on his colleagues.

The impeachment case against Mr. Trump might mercifully spell the end of the Master Narrative the Democrats have been confabulating since 2016: that Donald Trump invited the wicked Vlad Putin to checkmate Hillary Clinton and thereby crushed the hopes and dreams of those wishing to make Ukraine the 51st state… or something like that. Because according to Mr. Schiff, there is no nation on this planet as dear to the interests of America than darling Ukraine, with its radioactive forests, decrepitating Soviet infrastructure, and dedication to liberty.

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Adam Schiff’s Very Scary Warmongering Speech, by Daniel Lazare

Adam Schiff’s Senate speech, a part of the impeachment charade, encapsulates the Washington’s ginned-up Russia hysteria. From Daniel Lazare at antiwar.com:

All the usual suspects are praising Adam Schiff’s marathon two-and-a-half-hour Senate speech on Wednesday to the skies. Neocon columnist Jennifer Rubin calls it “a grand slam” in the Washington Post. Legal analyst Jeffrey Toobin describes it as “dazzling” on CNN. New York Times columnist Gail Collins says it was “a great job” and that Schiff is “a rock star” for pulling it off.

But in fact it was the opposite – a fear-mongering, sword-rattling harangue that will not only raise tensions with Russia for no good reason, but sends a chilling message to dissidents at home that if they deviate from Russiagate orthodoxy by one iota, they’ll be driven from the fold.

What is that orthodoxy? It’s that Russia invaded poor innocent Ukraine in 2014, that it interfered in the US presidential election in 2016 in order to hurt Hillary Clinton and propel Donald Trump into the White House, and that it’s now trying to smear Joe Biden merely because he had allowed his son to take a high-paying job with a notorious Ukrainian oligarch at a time when he was supposedly heading up the Ukrainian anti-corruption effort.

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The War on Journalism: The Greenwald Persecution Mimics Assange, by Nozomi Hayase

While paying lip service to a free press and saluting whistleblowers, governments are going after those in the press who help whistleblowers get their stories before the public. From Nozomi Hayase at antiwar.com:

At the hearing on Thursday, at Westminster in London, the timetable for Julian Assange’s US extradition case was worked out. Assange’s US legal teams made an application to have the extradition hearing split. His defense lawyer, Edward Fitzgerald, emphasized to the court that they won’t be ready to call the main body of their evidence until after the first week of the hearing, which is now set to start at the end of February.

Assange has been indicted on 17 counts of espionage, for his publishing of documents concerning the US wars in Iran and Afghanistan, and torture in the Guantanamo Bay prison. During his previous hearing on Monday, January 13, his lawyer, Gareth Peirce, raised concern about Assange’s lack of access to legal counsel, making it difficult for him to adequately prepare for his defense as he faces sentences that carry prison time of up to 175 years.

Recently, new evidence has emerged showing that the CIA hired the Spanish security company, US Global, to spy on Assange inside the Ecuadorian Embassy in London, while Assange was living under political asylum. The targets of this surveillance included his lawyers, doctors and visitors. Now, three former employees of the company came forward as witnesses confirming that their then-boss, David Morales, ordered workers to install new embassy video cameras with audio recording capacity in December 2017.

Outside the court after the hearing, WikiLeaks editor-in-chief Kristinn Hrafnsson said, “We have now learnt from submissions and affidavits presented by the US… that they do not consider foreign nationals to have a First Amendment protection.” He reiterated how this is a political persecution of a journalist, and is a grave attack on press freedom worldwide.

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Should You Hate The Media? by Bill O’Reilly

This looks like a fairly standard alternative media rant, but consider the source. From Bill O’Reilly at billoreilly.com:

Should You Hate the Media?
1975 was an exciting time to be at Boston University’s School of Public Communication. There we were, about 30 students seeking a Master’s Degree in Broadcast Journalism.  All of us thought our quest was noble, that we would become purveyors of truth, skilled fact-finders and truth-tellers in the Watergate tradition. The lessons presented were well worth the tens of thousands of dollars I had to pay for them.
Forty-five years later, having reached the top of my profession, I generally despise my own industry, something I never could have predicted.  Here’s why.
The national TV press is presently controlled by six major corporations that use their vast power to profiteer while attempting to destroy ideological enemies. The coverage of Donald Trump’s presidency has proved that statement beyond any reasonable doubt.
The stage was set early when a New York Times columnist wrote that because Mr. Trump was so loathsome (to him and his liberal colleagues), the basic tenets of fair journalism no longer applied.  Get Trump was the new rule.

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The American Chaos Machine, by Danny Sjursen

It is inevitable, given the trend towards decentralized violence, that any attempt at centralized violence such as the US’s many invasions would result only in chaos. From Danny Sjursen at tomdispatch.com:

U.S. Foreign Policy Goes Off the Rails

In March 1906, on the heels of the U.S. Army’s massacre of some 1,000 men, women, and children in the crater of a volcano in the American-occupied Philippines, humorist Mark Twain took his criticism public. A long-time anti-imperialist, he flippantly suggested that Old Glory should be redesigned “with the white stripes painted black and the stars replaced by the skull and cross-bones.”

I got to thinking about that recently, five years after I became an antiwar dissenter (while still a major in the U.S. Army), and in the wake of another near-war, this time with Iran. I was struck yet again by the way every single U.S. military intervention in the Greater Middle East since 9/11 has backfiredin wildly counterproductive ways, destabilizing a vast expanse of the planet stretching from West Africa to South Asia.

Chaos, it seems, is now Washington’s stock-in-trade. Perhaps, then, it’s time to resurrect Twain’s comment — only today maybe those stars on our flag should be replaced with the universal symbol for chaos.After all, our present administration, however unhinged, hardly launched this madness. President Trump’s rash, risky, and repugnant decision to assassinate Iranian Major General Qassem Suleimani on the sovereign soil of Iraq was only the latest version of what has proven to be a pervasive state of affairs. Still, that and Trump’s other recent escalations in the region do illustrate an American chaos machine that’s gone off the rails. And the very manner — I’m loathe to call it a “process” — by which it’s happened just demonstrates the way this president has taken American chaos to its dark but logical conclusion.

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They Killed King for the Same Reason They Killed Kennedy, by Jacob G. Hornberger

The “They” in the title is a group of conspirators within the government and their outside confederates. From Jacob G. Hornberger at fff.org:

Amidst all the anti-Russia brouhaha that has enveloped our nation, we shouldn’t forget that the U.S. national-security establishment — specifically the Pentagon, CIA, and FBI — was convinced that Martin Luther King Jr. was a communist agent who was spearheading a communist takeover of the United States.

This occurred during the Cold War, when Americans were made to believe that there was a gigantic international communist conspiracy to take over the United States and the rest of the world. The conspiracy, they said, was centered in Moscow, Russia — yes, that Russia!

That was, in fact, the justification for converting the federal government to a national-security state type of governmental structure after the end of World War II. The argument was that a limited-government republic type of governmental structure, which was the nation’s founding governmental system, was insufficient to prevent a communist takeover of the United States. To prevail over the communists in what was being called a “Cold War,” it would be necessary for the federal government, they said, to become a national-security state so that it could wield the same type of sordid, dark-side, totalitarian-like practices that the communists themselves wielded and exercised.

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