Requiem for the Fourth Estate

This originally appeared at Consortium News.

It is a very sad day for the rule of law.

Today’s broad-daylight manhandling and kidnapping of Julian Assange from political asylum in the Ecuadorian embassy in London demonstrates in bas-relief that in today’s Anglo-America, the Magna Carta and the Bill of Rights are now “quaint and obsolete,” to use the words of pseudo-lawyer, Alberto Gonzales.

White House attorney Gonzales was referring in January 2002 to other basic principles of international law, the Geneva Conventions, from which he decided he could grant Bush an exemption so he could authorize torture – which he did on February 7, 2002. (We have that memo.)

This no secret; we also have the Gonzales’s memo to Bush. For services performed, Gonzales was nominated and confirmed as Attorney General, the chief U.S. law enforcer.

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Sorry, Russia-Gaters: WikiLeaks Got the DNC Emails From Insider, Not Russia

WHY THE DNC WAS NOT HACKED BY THE RUSSIANS by Binney and Johnson

The following is Ray McGovern’s commetary on this important article.

Thinking back, President Barack Obama dropped a huge hint two days before he left office, using his last press conference to point out that the “conclusions of the intelligence community” regarding how WikiLeaks received the DNC emails were “inconclusive.”  The nerve!  Daring to say that just 13 days after the U.S. intelligence Gang of Four briefed Obama up and down on their evidence-free “assessment” that WikiLeaks got the DNC emails via a Russian hack.

This was one time Obama summoned the courage to face down James (the-Russians-are-almost-genetically-driven-to-deceive) Clapper and other intelligence chiefs.  After all, Obama is a lawyer.  He “does evidence.”  In contrast, ex-CIA Director John Brennan, told Congress that he does not “do evidence.”

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Karen Kwiatkowski Receives 2018 Sam Adams Award. Read Her Acceptance Speech Here

Here is Karen Kwiatowski’s acceptance speech for the 2018 Sam Adams Award at a ceremony in Washington on Saturday night, preceded by the citation, that was read by former CIA analyst Ray McGovern.

Citation: Karen Kwiatkowski

Know all ye by these presents that Karen Kwiatkowski is hereby honored with the traditional Sam Adams Corner-Brightener Candlestick Holder, in symbolic recognition of her courage in shining light into dark places.

“If you see something, say something,” we so often hear. Karen Kwiatkowski took that saying to heart.

She saw her Pentagon superiors acting as eager accomplices to the Cheney/Bush administration’s deceit in launching a war of aggression on Iraq. And she said something – and helped Knight Ridder reporters Warren Strobel and Jonathan Landay see beneath the official lies and get the sordid story right before the war.

Karen’s courage brings to mind the clarion call of Rabbi Abraham Heschel against the perpetrators of an earlier war – Vietnam. “Few are guilty,” he said, “but all are responsible. Indifference to evil is more insidious than evil itself.” Karen would not be indifferent to evil.

Ed Snowden, Sam Adams awardee in 2013, noted that we tend to ignore some degree of evil in our daily life, but, as Ed put it, “We also have a breaking point and when people find that, they act.” As did Karen. As did 16 of Karen’s predecessors honored with this award.

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The Bushes: Fathers and Sons (With Apologies to Turgenev)

Picture the late George H. W. Bush being welcomed with open arms last night by three of the Gang of Six white-collar criminals he pardoned on Christmas Eve, 1992, just before he left office. Waiting for him were former Defense Secretary Casper Weinberger, plus swashbuckling, CIA covert action chieftains “Dewey” Clarridge and Clair George – all of them charged (and George convicted) of perjury.

What a celebration is in store when the other three of the gang eventually join them. They are Robert McFarlane, the CIA’s Alan Fiers, and former Assistant Secretary of State Elliott Abrams – all of whom had already pleaded guilty to withholding information from Congress before Bush Sr. let them off the hook.

It caused an outcry in some circles, as The New York Timesreported: “Bush Pardons 6 in Iran Affair, Aborting a Weinberger Trial; Prosecutor Assails ‘Cover-Up.’”

Cover-up indeed. George H. W. Bush was up to his neck in the crimes of Iran-Contra, and so was his protégé, Bobby Gates. Gates was so demonstrably involved that he had zero chance of being confirmed as CIA director the first time it was tried. In 1991, Bush had to move mountains to get him confirmed. Gates knew where the bodies were buried, so to speak, and could be counted on to keep them six feet under. (I learned all this well after I spent four years, from 1981 to 1985, for the CIA briefing then-Vice President Bush with The President’s Daily Brief.)

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Lt. Col. Karen Kwiatkowski Wins 2018 Sam Adams Award

Dishonest (not “mistaken”) intelligence greased the skids for the widespread killing and maiming in the Middle East that began with the Cheney/Bush “Shock and Awe” attack on Iraq. The media reveled in the unconscionable (but lucrative) buzzword “shock-and-awe” for the initial attack. In retrospect, the real shock lies in the awesome complicity of virtually all “mainstream media” in the leading false predicate for this war of aggression – weapons of mass destruction (WMD).

Only one major media group, Knight Ridder, avoided the presstitution, so to speak. It faced into the headwinds blowing from the “acceptable” narrative, did the investigative spadework, and found patriotic insiders who told them the truth. Karen Kwiatkowski, who had a front-row seat at the Pentagon, was one key source for the intrepid Knight Ridder journalists. Karen tells us that her actual role is accurately portrayed by the professional actress in the Rob Reiner’s film Shock and Awe.

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Ray McGovern on Adam Schiff’s Incredible, Incurable Credulity

(hat tip to Rosie Memos @almostjingo for tweeting)

Rep. Adam Schiff, who takes the chair of the House Intelligence Committee in January, has a nose for hot tips about his bete noire, Russian President Vladimir Putin, as well as a strong bent toward credulousness. On October 23, 2018, Schiff solemnly told a young audience at the old Hillary Clinton/John Podesta Center for American Progress Action Fund that he had been told that Putin has one of his henchmen follow Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev around with a pillow to smother him in his sleep if he ever gets out of line.

No, the video contains no hint that Schiff was speaking tongue in cheek. Perhaps worse, no one in the audience laughed (where do they recruit such credulous young folks?).

Be sure to scroll down for images of the pillow-carrier caught in action. :-)) He apparently has no reason to fear “identification,” since, according to Schiff’s source, “Medvedev is nothing.”

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