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WATCH: US State Dept. Spokesman Struggles To Explain US Hypocrisy In Egypt

by on Thursday, January 27, 2011 at 2:26 am EDT in Middle East, World

Here’s an excellent al Jazeera interview that perfectly demonstrates America’s misguided and hypocritical Middle East policy.

US State Department Spokesman PJ Crowley gets tongue-tied trying to explain how the United States can on one hand claim to support the Egyptian protesters in their fight against torture, poverty, corruption & unemployment, while simultaneously propping up their brutal dictator Hasni Mubarak with $1.3 billion per year.

The rhetorical tightrope Crowley attempts to walk will leave you cringing.  Which could be said of most US State Department press briefings these days.

I encourage the “They hate us for our freedom” crowd to take a moment, and watch this video clip:

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Watch: Ron Paul Defends WikiLeaks To US Congress

by on Friday, December 10, 2010 at 2:01 pm EDT in Politics, WikiLeaks, World

Representative Ron Paul (R-Texas) — the self-pronounced Libertarian — takes the floor of Congress to defend whistleblower group WikiLeaks and its right to publish the information it has lawfully obtained.

This really is a must-watch speech.  Paul calls out his fellow politicians for jumping the propaganda bandwagon and in doing so, jeopardizing America’s 1st Amendment Rights.   He states that “the real reason for the near universal attacks on Wikileaks is more about secretly maintaining a seriously flawed foreign policy of empire than it is about national security.”

WATCH:

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Here’s the transcript of Ron Paul’s speech (originally published by the Huffington Post):

WikiLeaks release of classified information has generated a lot of attention in the past few weeks. The hysterical reaction makes one wonder if this is not an example of killing the messenger for the bad news. Despite what is claimed, the information that has been so far released, though classified, has caused no known harm to any individual, but it has caused plenty of embarrassment to our government. Losing our grip on our empire is not welcomed by the neoconservatives in charge.

There is now more information confirming that Saudi Arabia is a principal supporter and financier of al Qaeda, and that this should set off alarm bells since we guarantee its Sharia-run government. This emphasizes even more the fact that no al Qaeda existed in Iraq before 9/11, and yet we went to war against Iraq based on the lie that it did. It has been charged by experts that Julian Assange, the internet publisher of this information, has committed a heinous crime, deserving prosecution for treason and execution, or even assassination.

But should we not at least ask how the U.S. government should prosecute an Australian citizen for treason for publishing U.S. secret information that he did not steal? And if WikiLeaks is to be prosecuted for publishing classified documents, why shouldn’t the Washington Post, the New York Times, and others also published these documents be prosecuted? Actually, some in Congress are threatening this as well.

The New York Times, as a results of a Supreme Court ruling, was not found guilty in 1971 for the publication of the Pentagon Papers. Daniel Ellsberg never served a day in prison for his role in obtaining these secret documents. The Pentagon Papers were also inserted into the Congressional record by Senator Mike Gravel, with no charges of any kind being made of breaking any national security laws. Yet the release of this classified information was considered illegal by many, and those who lied us into the Vietnam war, and argued for its prolongation were outraged. But the truth gained from the Pentagon Papers revealed that lies were told about the Gulf of Tonkin attack. which perpetuated a sad and tragic episode in our history.

Just as with the Vietnam War, the Iraq War was based on lies. We were never threatened by weapons of mass destruction or al Qaeda in Iraq, though the attack on Iraq was based on this false information. Any information which challenges the official propaganda for the war in the Middle East is unwelcome by the administration and the supporters of these unnecessary wars. Few are interested in understanding the relationship of our foreign policy and our presence in the Middle East to the threat of terrorism. Revealing the real nature and goal of our presence in so many Muslim countries is a threat to our empire, and any revelation of this truth is highly resented by those in charge.

Questions to consider:

Number 1: Do the America People deserve know the truth regarding the ongoing wars in Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan and Yemen?

Number 2: Could a larger question be how can an army private access so much secret information?

Number 3: Why is the hostility mostly directed at Assange, the publisher, and not at our governments failure to protect classified information?

Number 4: Are we getting our moneys worth of the 80 Billion dollars per year spent on intelligence gathering?

Number 5: Which has resulted in the greatest number of deaths: lying us into war or Wikileaks revelations or the release of the Pentagon Papers?

Number 6: If Assange can be convicted of a crime for publishing information that he did not steal, what does this say about the future of the first amendment and the independence of the internet?

Number 7: Could it be that the real reason for the near universal attacks on Wikileaks is more about secretly maintaining a seriously flawed foreign policy of empire than it is about national security?

Number 8: Is there not a huge difference between releasing secret information to help the enemy in a time of declared war, which is treason, and the releasing of information to expose our government lies that promote secret wars, death and corruption?

Number 9: Was it not once considered patriotic to stand up to our government when it is wrong?

Thomas Jefferson had it right when he advised ‘Let the eyes of vigilance never be closed.’ I yield back the balance of my time.

WATCH: ADL’s Abe Foxman Exposed In Television Interview

by on Friday, October 29, 2010 at 12:58 pm EDT in Middle East, Politics, World

Ha’aretz writer David Sheen interviews the Anti-Defamation League’s Abe Foxman in this 53 minute video clip (h/t Max Blumenthal), and Foxman literally flips his wig over what would seem to be softball questions.

Sheen asks the ADL’s National Director about many topics, including: his bestowing Rupert Murdoch with the ADL Award, his denunciation of PETA, his condemnation of the proposed Islamic community center in downtown Manhattan, his recent blacklisting of human rights groups (proclaiming them to be anti-Israel), his position on Breaking the Silence (a group of Israeli soldiers who came forward and admitted to needlessly destroying homes, firing white phosphorous into populated areas in Gaza, amongst other war crimes); on why Israel Defense Minister Ehud Barak is allowed to compare Israel to an Apartheid state, yet ADL proclaims others who make the comparison to be anti-semitic, his position on the BDS movement, and many more.

Sheen poses each of his questions in a very conscientious, non-combative way giving Foxman the full floor to explain (if not clarify) himself to viewers who perhaps can’t comprehend ADL’s inconsistent, often incoherent, positions.  But Foxman — obviously unable to logically defend them himself — goes nuts, cutting the interviewer off repeatedly, accusing him of being selective in his questioning, and of trying to do a hit-job on him.  An ironic accusation, coming from Abe Foxman.

At one point, Sheen asked Foxman how he and ADL’s board formulates its positions, and Foxman quips, “That’s not your business! … It’s not your business how we do this.”

Considering how Abe Foxman has made a highly rewarding career for himself by tarnishing the reputations of honorable, peace-loving, human-rights activists, I’d say it is everyone’s business how ADL formulates its positions.

Meanwhile, Abe Foxman’s vitriolic screeds continue to get top placement at the Huffington Post.  Here is his latest post — released just yesterday — lashing out at Jimmy Carter, once again;  this time for calling Gaza a ‘prison’.  Why Arianna continues to give this uber-neo-con a platform to demagogue honorable Progressives who sympathize with the plight of the Palestinian people is beyond me.  Perhaps even the Left needs its own ‘Glenn Beck’ equivalent to help fuel the traffic…

Here’s the David Sheen interview.

ENJOY:

Why Has Bill Clinton Gone ‘Jimmy Carter’ On Israel?

by on Sunday, October 10, 2010 at 1:37 am EDT in Middle East, World

Former President Bill Clinton — a favorite both in Israel, and amongst pro-Israel supporters here in the US — recently made an abrupt shift in his public statements on Israel, breaking completely from the dominant ‘neo-conservative, inner-beltway’ narrative on US foreign policy in the Middle East. First, Clinton created an uproar in the Israeli government […]

Breaking News: U.S. Threatens Aid To Israel In Pursuit Of Peace Deal

by on Friday, January 8, 2010 at 11:03 pm EDT in Middle East, Politics, World

In speaking with PBS on the eve of his visit to the Middle East, U.S. special envoy George J. Mitchell delivered an unveiled threat to Israel: George Mitchell threatened that his country would freeze its aid to Israel if the Jewish state failed to advance peace talks with the Palestinians and a two-state solution. Mitchell […]

U.S. Pushing Mideast Peace Deal ‘Guaranteed’ To Be Completed in 2 Years

by on Monday, January 4, 2010 at 2:46 pm EDT in Middle East, World

Several news sources are reporting that the US Administration is about to propose a new Middle East peace initiative whereby Israel and the Palestinians would resume final status talks — suspended since Operation Cast Lead (Israel’s military excursion into Gaza) last year.  The proposal would be based on the following parameters: 1. The issue of […]

Israel’s Dahiya Doctrine Undermines Its ‘Collateral Damage’ Claims In Gaza

by on Wednesday, December 30, 2009 at 9:55 am EDT in Middle East, World

It’s been a full year since Israel unleashed ‘Operation Cast Lead’ against the people of Gaza, leaving 1,400 dead (mostly civilians).  Israel and Egypt continue to blockade the 1.5 million inhabitants confined within the war-torn ghetto, restricting the flow of food, fuel, and other essential items, and thus making reconstruction and recovery virtually impossible. The […]

Max Blumenthal Attended Pro-Israel Rally In NYC Celebrating Gaza Attack

by on Monday, December 28, 2009 at 11:43 am EDT in Middle East, World

Max Blumenthal attended a Pro-Israel rally in New York City in celebration of the annihilation of Gaza (Operation Cast Lead).  He interviewed many of the rally attendees to get their perspective on what had just happened. He reran this video on his blog today, under the title: ‘Gaza, Never Forget’ in memory of the Gaza […]

CNN: Israel Ethnically Cleansing Palestinians From Jerusalem At Fastest Rate In History!

by on Saturday, December 5, 2009 at 4:13 pm EDT in Middle East, World

A startling story by CNN shows how Israel has ramped up its Zionist policies of cleansing Palestinians from East Jerusalem. Israel’s Ministry of Interior reported that in 2008 alone, Israel revoked residency permits of 4,577 Palestinians, originally from East Jerusalem.  Compare that 2008 number with the number of Palestinians — 8,558 total — who had […]

Ha’aretz Journalist, Gideon Levy: “Israel Is Addicted To The Occupation”

by on Monday, November 16, 2009 at 1:59 pm EDT in Middle East, Politics, World

Israel’s most prominent journalist, Gideon Levy, follows up on his recent column — one where he blasted the U.S. for continuing to ‘suck up to Israel’ — with an interview on The Real News Network.  Here he describes Israel as a country “addicted to the occupation.” He pleads with the U.S. to be a friend […]