Tag: journalists

The War on the First Amendment Has Gone Global

Cross posted from The Stars Hollow Gazette

The war on media was inspired by America and encouraged by Barack Obama. Obama rocks. Not

Egypt’s al-Jazeera trial was inspired by America’s global war on journalism

http://cinziamazzamakeup.com/?x=acquistare-cialis-generico-on-line    From a War on Terror to a war on leaks, now comes America’s shadow influence on a media crackdown

   Ten years ago, the United States also justified its detention of al-Jazeera journalists by claiming a “national security threat”. These arrests could not be cloaked as mere collateral damage in a messy war. The US, then as Egypt does now, made leaping connections between the news network and militants, and specifically targeted those whose coverage did not serve the military’s objectives: Dick Cheney warned that al-Jazeera risked being “labeled as ‘Osama’s outlet to the world‘”; Donald Rumsfeld called the network’s coverage of the Iraq war “vicious, inaccurate, inexcusable”.

   Over the next several years, US forces arrested and detained al-Jazeera journalists like Sami al Hajj and Salah Hasan Nusaif Jasim al Ejaili. US military forces captured both in separate instances while they were doing their jobs, and tortured them while attempting to establish ties between al-Jazeera and al-Qaida. Neither al Hajj nor al Ejaili received justice for their wrongful detention. After seven years of imprisonment in Guantanamo Bay, the US government released al Hajj to Sudanese authorities, without any reparations. Meanwhile al Ejaili, who was detained at Abu Ghraib, brought a case with other victims against the private military contractor at the prison, alleging it conspired to commit torture and war crimes. But the case was dismissed by the district court. The court perversely ordered al Ejaili and other plaintiffs to pay their alleged torturers for the cost of the suit. The case is pending on appeal.

   The reverberations of this misguided War on Terror continue, even if the war has shifted: the Obama administration has famously invoked the Espionage Act more than any other American president, attempting to control press leaks with tactics a report found to be “the most aggressive … since the Nixon administration“.

Who the President Reads

Cross posted frpm The Stars Hollow Gazette

At the end of each year Salon’s Alex Pareene gives us his list of his top ten journalistic hacks. This year Alex has ranked the columnists that are President Barack Obama top reads. As, he points out in the article, the Internet has made the conversation more “democratized” than in the past when everyone relied on the print media. Today it isn’t so much how many people read a columnist, it’s who.

But as a Politico editor could tell you, it’s not how many you reach, it’s who. Among Friedman’s readers: much of the nation’s executive class. Among Allen’s? Nearly everyone who works in any capacity for every member of Congress. That’s why it’s necessary to criticize them. They really do “drive the conversation,” to use a particularly odious Politico-ism. Both what is considered politically possible and politically desirable in this country depend in large part on what a handful of mainly older, mainly white and overwhelmingly male columnists and pundits say. Who is let into that conversation and who is left out of it has consequences for all Americans. That was made clear 10 years ago, in the run-up to the invasion of Iraq, which the nation’s premier political opinion makers (what we once called “Thought Leaders”) almost universally supported. The Bush administration was aware of this, too, and devoted more efforts to convincing them than to trying to win over what we vaguely call “the people.”

President Barack Obama. Barack Obama loves newspaper columnists. He reads them, because he thinks they offer smarter commentary than one hears on cable news, and he invites them to the White House regularly, so he can influence their writing.

There in lies the problem, as Alex lays it out. Of the columnists that Pres. Obama has said are his favorite reads and who he has invited to the White House, none are women, all but one is black, most are older than 50 and most supported the Iraq war in 2003.

These are the men whose opinions the president “favors”

12. http://maientertainmentlaw.com/?search=propecia-causes-sterility Eugene Robinson, Washington Post.

11. comprare viagra generico spedizione veloce a Genova Jonathan Chait, New York magazine.

10. source site Josh Barro, Business Insider.

9. http://maientertainmentlaw.com/?search=can-i-buy-levitra-at-walgreens Ezra Klein, Washington Post.

8. http://cinziamazzamakeup.com/?x=dove-comprare-viagra-generico-200-mg E.J. Dionne, Washington Post.

7. http://maientertainmentlaw.com/?search=prednisone-indications-20-mg David Brooks.

6. http://cinziamazzamakeup.com/?x=cialis-generico-envio-24-horas Gerald Seib, Wall Street Journal.

5. follow url David Ignatius, Washington Post.

4. dove acquistare viagra generico 25 mg a Roma Jeffrey Goldberg, Bloomberg View.

3. Joe Klein, Time.

2. Thomas Friedman, The Davos Herald-Register.

1. Fred Hiatt, Washington Post Editorial Page editor.

Who do you think the president should be reading more? Why?

Wikileaks Source Arrested in Iraq, Hacker Snitched

A wikileaks source has been arrested in Iraq.

I would urge you to read the entire story link at Wired.com, because with anything military related, there is their version, and the spin, what really happened,  and the truth usually gets lost somewhere.  The suspect, Spc Bradley Manning, was arrested 12 days ago May 26, but it’s been kept under wraps.

In addition to the video “Collateral Murder,”  which was released world wide in April, showing the murder of the Reuters journalist and photographer, and the wounding of children in a nearby vehicle,  by American helicopter attack in Iraq in 2007, which was diaried here,

https://docudharma.com/diar…

More about the life and deaths of Reuters’ Namir Noor Eldeen and Saeed Chmagh and their surviving families, here,

http://collateralmurder.com/en…

The wikileaks homepage is here:  http://wikileaks.org/

This 22 year old Army intelligence Spc also allegedly got ahold of 260,000 classified US diplomatic cables.  Which he boasted about to an “ex”  (ex? once a, always a ….. )  hacker named Adrian Lamo.


“Everywhere there’s a U.S. post, there’s a diplomatic scandal that will be revealed,” Manning wrote. “It’s open diplomacy. World-wide anarchy in CSV format. It’s Climategate with a global scope, and breathtaking depth. It’s beautiful, and horrifying.”

http://www.wired.com/threatlev…

Wikileaks: Reuters and kids as Collateral Damage

The man, dressed in a white shirt and dark pants, strides confidently down the middle of the suburban street, his camera bag slung over one shoulder, his co worker following behind, with other men in summer clothing ambling down the road.  He pauses to speak into his cell phone.

In the distance, helicopters hover.

Nearly 3 years later, what happened to him and companion as they walked to their next Reuters assignment is known.

(warning, graphic video below, noise and images, please do not view if you are prone to PTSD.)

A written commentary on this story may be seen here at Democratic Underground:

http://www.democraticundergrou…

The Columbia Journalism Review wrote about the release of the video by Wikileaks at the National Press Club here:  http://www.cjr.org/the_kicker/…

the video is online here http://collateralmurder.com/

An epluribusmedia writeup by Michael Collins is here:

http://discuss.epluribusmedia….

In Iraq and Afghanistan, by this year, there have been 4705 American and Coalition forces killed in Iraq, and 1713 killed in Afghanistan, with the majority coming from the United States, the United Kingdom, and Canada.  There have also been at least 462 private contractors killed  http://icasualties.org/Iraq/Co…

At least 139 journalists have been killed in Iraq between the years 2003 and 2009.  Of those, 7 were embedded with the military, and 132 were non embedded, or “unilateral.”   An astounding 117 of those 139 were Iraqis, with the rest being European or from other Arab nations, with just 2 being from the United States.

http://www.cpj.org/reports/200…

Rachel Maddow: Truthspeaker! VIDEO Update

USA Journalists, Ling & Lee, held in N. Korea

Rachel Maddow just covered this in the last five minutes or so of her show tonight. I’ll look for the msnbc link to show up, and add it.

UPDATE with the video link up now

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/26…

Meanwhile, McClatchy has a story up about it.

Seized U.S. journalists become ‘hostages’ in N. Korea maneuvering

BEIJING — When American journalists Laura Ling and Euna Lee fell into the hands of North Korean border guards two weeks ago, vanishing into the maw of the most isolated nation on Earth, their fate drew concern.

Now the complications are growing.

I believe the date they were arrested (?) was March 17.

I know this is terrible and scary and I feel for their families, but that’s not what made me sick. It was this…

Updated (3x) Over 200,000 Dead In Burma: Vloggers Respond

First, breaking news this morning. There has been a 7.8 earthquake in China that has left four schoolchildren and one adult dead:

Chinese President Hu Jintao has called for “all-out” efforts to rescue victims of an earthquake measuring 7.8 that has hit south-western China.

The quake struck 92km (57 miles) north-west of Sichuan’s provincial capital, Chengdu, at 1428 (0628 GMT).

The children were killed, and more than 100 others injured, when primary school buildings collapsed in the Chongqing area, a large municipality near Sichuan province, Xinhua added.

Another person is reported to have died when a water tower collapsed in the city of Mianyang, in Santai County.

link: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/asi…

The Bangkok Post gives further details of the magnitude of the quake:

Government and local officials said the quake struck at 2:28pm local time (1:28pm in Thailand) in Wenchuan county, Sichuan province. It was felt in cities hundreds of kilometres away, including Beijing, Shanghai and Hong Kong, in addition to Bangkok.

“Major tremors” were felt by residents of cities closer to the epicentre, including Sichuan’s capital, Chengdu, and nearby Chongqing, the official news agency Xinhua said.

link: http://www.bangkokpost.com/top…

(Meanwhile in Myanmar below.- ek)

Misery Accomplished

May 1, 2003, is another day of infamy for the Bush administration and America. In the kind of staged bravado dictators relish, George W. Bush donned a flight suit, pretended to fly, and then used an aircraft carrier as the backdrop for a speech to declare the mission in Iraq accomplished. Every cable news channel carried the event live as if history were somehow being made. It is time to look back at five years of accomplishments in Iraq.

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Room of Doom

I passed by that Room of Doom every day for two weeks when I was working at an odd job between classes.

It was a terrible place but when I first went by I had no reason to know the terror lurking within.

Parents brought their children to that room.  The children had received a death sentence that no lawyer could mitigate.  The children had received a diagnosis of juvenile leukemia.  There was no cure, not even a treatment.  All that waited for the children was an early painful death.