• ThumbnailThe mass media have suddenly discovered Jeffrey Sterling — after his conviction Monday afternoon as a CIA whistleblower. Sterling’s indictment four years ago received fleeting news coverage that recited the government’s charges. From the outset, the Justice Department portrayed him as bitter and vengeful — with the classic trash-the-whistleblower word “disgruntled” thrown in — all of [...]

  • Norman Solomon wrote a new diary post: Leak Trial Shows CIA Zeal to Hide Incompetence

    2015-01-22 00:17:23View | Delete

    Six days of testimony at the trial of former CIA officer Jeffrey Sterling have proven the agency’s obsession with proclaiming its competence. Many of the two-dozen witnesses from the Central Intelligence Agency conveyed smoldering resentment that a whistleblower or journalist might depict the institution as a bungling outfit unworthy of its middle name. Some witnesses seemed [...]

  • Midway through the trial of former CIA officer Jeffrey Sterling, one comment stands out. “A criminal case,” defense attorney Edward MacMahon told the jury at the outset, “is not a place where the CIA goes to get its reputation back.” But that’s where the CIA went with this trial in its first week — sending [...]

  • Norman Solomon wrote a new diary post: Race, Leaks and Prosecution at the CIA

    2015-01-16 02:06:07View | Delete

    Condoleezza Rice made headlines when she testified Thursday at the leak trial of former CIA officer Jeffrey Sterling — underscoring that powerful people in the Bush administration went to great lengths a dozen years ago to prevent disclosure of a classified operation. But as The Associated Press  noted, “While Rice’s testimony helped establish the importance of [...]

  • Norman Solomon wrote a new diary post: Scapegoating the CIA Whistleblower Jeffrey Sterling

    2015-01-15 21:31:51View | Delete

    This week, in a federal courtroom, I’ve heard a series of government witnesses testify behind a screen while expounding on a central precept of the national security state: The CIA can do no wrong. Those CIA employees and consultants are more than mere loyalists for an agency that soaks up $15 billion a year and continues to [...]

  • Norman Solomon wrote a new diary post: Sterling Trial Opens in Security-State Matrix

    2015-01-14 04:29:38View | Delete

    When the trial of former CIA officer Jeffrey Sterling got underway Tuesday in Northern Virginia, prospective jurors made routine references to “three-letter agencies” and alphabet-soup categories of security clearances. In an area where vast partnerships between intelligence agencies and private contractors saturate everyday life, the jury pool was bound to please the prosecution. In a U.S. [...]

  • The trial of former CIA officer Jeffrey Sterling, set to begin in mid-January, is shaping up as a major battle in the U.S. government’s siege against whistleblowing. With its use of the Espionage Act to intimidate and prosecute people for leaks in “national security” realms, the Obama administration is determined to keep hiding important facts that [...]

  • ThumbnailNo single review or interview can do justice to Pay Any Price — the new book by James Risen that is the antithesis of what routinely passes for journalism about the “war on terror.” Instead of evasive tunnel vision, the book offers big-picture acuity: focusing on realities that are pervasive and vastly destructive. Published this week, Pay Any Price [...]

  • Norman Solomon wrote a new diary post: Perpetual War Is Fine With New York Times After All

    2014-09-11 00:53:40View | Delete

    The editorial board of the  New York Times  has an Orwellian knack for war. Sixteen months ago, when President Obama gave oratorical lip service to ending “perpetual war,” the newspaper quickly touted that end as a democratic necessity. But now — in response to Obama’s speech Wednesday night announcing escalation of war without plausible end — the  Times<span style="font-size: [...]

  • Thanks Kevin, for this excellent post!

  • Thumbnail The Times’ editorial staff enthusiastically supports Israeli war crimes. Over the weekend, the  New York Times  sent out a clear signal: the mass slaughter of civilians is acceptable when the Israeli military is doing the killing. Under the headline “Israel’s War in Gaza,” the most powerful newspaper in the United States editorialized that such carnage is necessary. [...]

  • Norman Solomon wrote a new diary post: Does Uncle Sam Have a God Complex?

    2014-07-15 00:39:08View | Delete

    ThumbnailAs a matter of faith, some people believe that God can see and hear everything. But as a matter of fact, the U.S. government now has the kind of surveillance powers formerly attributed only to a supreme being. “He knows if you’ve been bad or good …” Top “national security” officials in Washington now have the [...]

  •   Blowing the whistle on wrongdoing creates a moral frequency that vast numbers of people are eager to hear. We don’t want our lives, communities, country and world continually damaged by the deadening silences of fear and conformity. I’ve met many whistleblowers over the years, and they’ve been extraordinarily ordinary. None were applying for halos or [...]

  • ThumbnailIn a memoir published this year, the CIA’s former top legal officer John Rizzo says that on the last day of 2005 a panicky White House tried to figure out how to prevent the distribution of a book by  New York Times  reporter James Risen. Officials were upset because Risen’s book,  State of War , exposed what — in his [...]

  • Norman Solomon commented on the diary post In Plain Sight: The Rise of Corporate Democrats in California by Gary Cohn.

    2014-04-17 13:57:20View | Delete

    As a Marin County resident, I can say that current Assembly member Marc Levine is largely functioning as a corporate tool.

  • Norman Solomon wrote a new diary post: Why We Need Fiercely Independent Media Critics

    2014-04-13 12:03:53View | Delete

    ThumbnailThe most renowned media critics are usually superficial and craven. That’s because — as one of the greatest in the 20th century, George Seldes, put it — “the most sacred cow of the press is the press itself.” Society needs strong, independent media critics like Upton Sinclair. No institutions are more image-conscious than big media outlets. [...]

  • ThumbnailWho knows, soon we might see headlines and cable TV shows asking: “Is Dianne Feinstein a whistleblower or a traitor?” Don’t confuse Feinstein with real whistleblower heroes. A truthful answer to that question could not possibly be “whistleblower.” It may already be a historic fact that Senator Feinstein’s speech on March 11, 2014 blew a whistle on [...]

  • The frontrunner to become the next president of the United States is playing an old and dangerous political game — comparing a foreign leader to Adolf Hitler. At a private charity event on Tuesday, in comments preserved on  audio, Hillary Clinton talked about actions by Russia’s President Vladimir Putin in the Crimea. “Now if this sounds [...]

  • International law is suddenly very popular in Washington. President Obama responded to Russian military intervention in the Crimea by accusing Russia of a “breach of international law.” Secretary of State John Kerry followed up by declaring that Russia is “in direct, overt violation of international law.” Unfortunately, during the last five years, no world leader [...]

  • Norman Solomon commented on the diary post Why Amazon’s Collaboration with the CIA Is So Ominous — and Vulnerable by Norman Solomon.

    2014-02-23 02:11:12View | Delete

    Denying that Amazon is engaged in “aggregating, safeguarding and analyzing many billions of factoids about human beings” doesn’t make the reality go away. We could have been having this conversation about the NSA a year ago. That the NSA would be capable of crossing boundaries and going past the letter of the law would be, [...]

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