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Health Care & Environment
11.16 How pesticide bans can prevent tens of thousands of suicides a year [how many thousands more die early from eating pesticide-laced food?]
11.15 The long read: The plastic backlash: what's behind our sudden rage – and will it make a difference? [the world wants to throw-up...]
11.15 Claws out: crab fishermen sue 30 oil firms over climate change [workers are waking-up...]
11.12 This Land is Your Land: The Zinke effect: how the US interior department became a tool of industry [behaving ignorantly again...]
11.11 Trump responds to worst fires in California’s history by threatening to withhold federal aid [behaving ignorantly again...]
11.11 Interior department sued for ‘secretive process’ in at-risk species assessment [behaving ignorantly again...]
11.11 Keystone XL pipeline: judge rules government 'jumped the gun' and orders halt [behaving ignorantly again...]
News Media Matters
US Politics, Policy & 'Culture'
11.17 As Energy for Medicare for All Explodes, Steny Hoyer's Plan Includes Waiting for Trump to Help Make Obamacare Better [Another who is unfit to be Democrat leader]
11.17 'A Staggeringly Bad Idea': Outrage as Pelosi Pushes Tax Rule That Would 'Kneecap the Progressive Agenda' [Unfit to be Democrat leader]
11.16 As 'Green New Deal' Demand Grows, Democrats Have Choice: Confront and Defeat Fossil Fuel Industry or Take Credit for 'Doomed' Planet [Two choices: Save life-on-Earth or help Republicans let it die?]
11.15 Democrats Won Big. Can They Go Bold, Too? [it's about suppressing the influence and leadership by Republican-like Democrats who counsel 'íncremental' (no) change, such as Nancy Pelosi, Steny Hoyer, Hillary Clinton, Chuck Shumer and Joe Biden]
11.15 Pentagon Officials Forced to Make Fewer Public Appearances to Avoid Provoking Trump [...by revealing Trump's huuuge ignorance]
11.15 REPUBLICANS USED A BILL ABOUT WOLVES TO AVOID A VOTE ON YEMEN WAR [if there are 'defense industry' profits to be made—including congress-critter insider-trading—and political 'donations' to be had, we mustn't stop killing innocent civilians!]
11.14 The Guardian view on Yemen’s misery: the west is complicit [WAR CRIMES]
Economics, Crony Capitalism
11.16 Amazon’s HQ2 Will Get a Tax Break Designed to Help the Poor [a Republican program that directly helps participating wealthy companies—but only helps workers if and when 'trickle-down' occurs.]
11.16 Trump doesn’t want to punish Saudi Arabia over Khashoggi. His new sanctions prove it. [George W. Bush made a similar immoral decision for the same oily reasons after 9-11, protecting Saudi defense contracts while facilitating the slaughter of poorer Arab "terrorists" in the region.]
11.15 The Earth is in a death spiral. It will take radical action to save us [fossil fuel burning, un-recyclable plastic production/use and methane gas release must cease ASAP.]
International & Futurism
11.17 Thousands gather to block London bridges in climate rebellion [We're losing WWIII because the enemy is invisible while we're like frogs slowly cooking. We aren't informed enough to be alarmed, but must get organized and motivated to fight back. We need a War Plan to ruthlessly pursue the fight of our lives!]
11.17 Policies of China, Russia and Canada threaten 5C climate change, study finds [Climate catastrophe is increasingly likely without worldwide organization, funding and commitment to winning THE WAR AGAINST GLOBAL WARMING.]
11.15 Cuba to pull doctors out of Brazil after President-elect Bolsonaro comments [terms must be negotiated for fairness to Cuba's health professionals without disruption of healthcare for Brazil's poor]
11.14 'Appalling' Khashoggi audio shocked Saudi intelligence – Erdogan [Exposing a psychopath?]
SECRETS DIVULGED MOSTLY PROVE WIKILEAKS RIGHT:
What's Behind the War on WikiLeaks
Published on ConsortiumNews.com on Wednesday, 8 December 2010
WikiLeaks has teased the genie of transparency out of a very opaque bottle, and powerful forces in America, who thrive on secrecy, are trying desperately to stuff the genie back in.
How far down the U.S. has slid can be seen, ironically enough, in a recent commentary in Pravda (that’s right, Russia’s Pravda):
Odd, isn’t it, that it takes a Pravda commentator to drive home the point that the Obama administration is on the wrong side of history.
Some bloodthirsty U.S. politicians even are calling for the murder of WikiLeaks leader Julian Assange, while some in the U.S. news media favor only prosecuting him and his leakers, while insisting that “responsible” journalists should be protected.
In this view, severe punishment should be reserved for people with access to the government’s dark secrets who out of conscience decide to share that information with the people, a prospect that some pundits find objectionable.
The corporate-and-government-dominated media appears apprehensive over the challenge that WikiLeaks presents. Perhaps deep down they know, as Dickens put it, "There is nothing so strong ... as the simple truth."
As part of the attempt to discredit WikiLeaks and Assange, much of the media commentary over the weekend portrayed Assange’s exposure of classified materials as very different from – and far less laudable than – what Daniel Ellsberg did in releasing the Pentagon Papers in 1971.
As a chapter of distant history – and a point of some First Amendment pride for U.S. journalists – the Pentagon Papers case and Ellsberg can now be safely defended. Not the same for WikiLeaks and Assange who today are facing a relentless assault, organized by the U.S. government and its many powerful allies.
But Ellsberg for one strongly rejects the mantra "Pentagon Papers good; WikiLeaks material bad." He continues:
As often is the case amid the pressures of the moment, it is easier for pundits and politicians to go with the flow rather than swim against the current. So they find it convenient to treat the motivations behind the WikiLeaks disclosures as reckless or self-interested. But that’s not what the evidence shows.
WikiLeaks’s reported source, Army Pvt. Bradley Manning, having watched Iraqi police abuses and having read of similar and worse incidents in official messages, reportedly concluded, "I was actively involved in something that I was completely against."
Rather than simply look the other way, Manning wrote: "I want people to see the truth ... because without information you cannot make informed decisions as a public," adding that he hoped to provoke worldwide discussion, debates and reform.
There is nothing to suggest that WikiLeaks/Assange’s motives were any different.
Though mothers are not the most impartial observers, what Assange’s mother told an Australian newspaper had the ring of truth. "Living by what you believe in and standing up for something is a good thing,” she said. “He sees what he is doing as a good thing in the world, fighting baddies, if you like."
That may sound a bit quixotic, but Assange and his associates appear the opposite of benighted. Still, with the Pentagon PR man Geoff Morrell and even Attorney General Eric Holder making thinly disguised threats of extrajudicial steps, it is not totally farfetched to worry about Assange’s personal safely.
Again, the media is the key. No one said it better than Monseñor Oscar Romero of El Salvador, who just before he was assassinated 25 years ago, warned, "The corruption of the press is part of our sad reality, and it reveals the complicity of the oligarchy."
Sadly, that is also true of the media situation in America today.
The big question is not whether Americans can "handle the truth." We believe they can. The challenge is to make the truth available to them in a straightforward way so they can draw their own conclusions -- an uphill battle given the dominance of the mainstream media, much of which has joined in the hateful campaign to discredit Assange and WikiLeaks.
So far, the question of whether an informed American public could put the country back on an honorable course has been an academic one rather than experience-based, because Americans have had very little access to the truth.
Now, however, with the WikiLeaks disclosures, they do. Indeed, the classified messages from the Army and the State Department released by WikiLeaks are, quite literally, "ground truth."
How to inform American citizens? As a step in that direction, on Oct. 23, we "Sam Adams Associates for Integrity in Intelligence” (see below) presented our annual award for integrity to Julian Assange.
In contrast to Richard Cohen’s disdain for people inside government who are driven by conscience to reveal crucial information to the public, Assange accepted the honor "on behalf of our sources, without which WikiLeaks’ contributions are of no significance."
In presenting the award, we noted that many around the world are deeply indebted to truth-tellers like WikiLeaks and its sources.
A footnote: Sam Adams Associates for Integrity in Intelligence (SAAII) is a group of former CIA colleagues and other admirers of former intelligence analyst Sam Adams. We try to hold up his example as a model for those who aspire to the courage to speak truth to power. (For more details, click here.)
Sam did speak truth to power on Vietnam, and in honoring his memory, SAAII confers an award each year to a truth-teller exemplifying Sam Adam’s courage, persistence, and devotion to truth -- no matter the consequences. Previous recipients include:
Ray McGovern works with Tell the Word, a publishing arm of the ecumenical Church of the Saviour in inner-city Washington. During his service as a CIA analyst included chairing National Intelligence Estimates, and preparing the President’s Daily Brief for Presidents Nixon, Ford, and Reagan. McGovern is co-founder of Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity (VIPS). Watch McGovern discuss this issue on TheRealNews.com.
To comment at Consortiumblog, click here. (To make a blog comment about this or other stories, you can use your normal e-mail address and password. Ignore the prompt for a Google account.) To comment to us by e-mail, click here. To donate so CosortiumNews can continue reporting and publishing stories like the one you just read, click here.
Mr. McGovern's stories are republished in the Baltimore Chronicle with permission of the author.
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Baltimore News Network, Inc., sponsor of this web site, is a nonprofit organization and does not make political endorsements. The opinions expressed in stories posted on this web site are the authors' own.This story was published on December 9, 2010.