Kirkpatrick Sale, director of the Middlebury Institute, discusses Vermont’s secessionist movement that derives from the state’s unique historical independence, the need to scrap the US Constitution due to its failure to preserve freedom and liberty, the inverse relationship between population size and the ability of government to function properly, the strong secessionist language enshrined in the Declaration of Independence and the Liberal tradition of supporting a strong national government to enforce civil rights despite the (at best) mixed results.
Allison Kilkenny, regular contributor to the Huffington Post, discusses the CNN poll that found a large majority of Americans believe Iran has nuclear weapons, not-so-covert US actions in Iran that make diplomacy impossible, Republicans who are unwilling to admit the cause and effect between US empire and terrorism and the Democrats who hypocritically defend Obama over the same policies they excoriated Bush for.
Ryan Dawson, keeper of the Website Anti-Neocons, discusses his website’s designation of February 26 as “Hate Richard Perle Day,” Perle’s leading role in inventing a Saddam Hussein/al Qaeda link and lying the American people into the Iraq War and how professional war agitators like Perle profit from the revolving door between government and defense contractor employment.
Kevin Zeese and David T. Beito discuss the formation of a full-spectrum political alliance against militarism and empire, the unwavering commitment of Democrat and Republican leadership to the military-industrial complex, the media’s unwillingness to discuss (much less debate) US empire and how you can help the fundraising effort for a broad-based peace movement.
Frida Berrigan, columnist for Foreign Policy in Focus, discusses US dominance of the global weapons market, the costly domestic upgrade cycle that is perpetuated by defense contractors selling current generation high-tech weapons abroad, the relatively low number of jobs created with money spent on the military compared to other sectors of the economy and how weapons manufacturers create demand for their products by promoting belligerent US foreign policy.
James L. Payne, Research Fellow at the Independent Institute, discusses the often-exaggerated US role in democracy-building during the post-WWII occupation of Germany, FDR’s intent to keep Germany impoverished for a generation, how the issuance of a currency and the end of price controls allowed the German economy to rebuild, government “good intentions” that invariably produce bad results and why “democracy” is really nothing more than the absence of violence in the political process.
Daphne Eviatar, Senior Associate in Law and Security for Human Rights First, discusses the preemptive legal defenses trotted out by John Yoo and Dick Cheney, information missing or withheld from the DOJ’s Office of Professional Responsibility’s torture memo investigation, the incompatibility of Yoo’s extralegal commander-in-chief theory with any semblance of Constitutional rule of law and why a post-apartheid South Africa-style truth commission may be the best resolution of Bush administration crimes we can hope for.
George Maschke, co-founder of Antipolygraph.org, discusses the polygraph examination that Bruce Ivins passed before he was the FBI’s prime suspect in the 2001 anthrax mailings, historical failures in detecting national security threats through “lie-detector” tests and the retrospective claims by the FBI and DOJ that Ivins used countermeasures (that are now supposedly detectable) to mislead his polygraph examiner.
Matthew Harwood, author of the Guardian article “Torture is a crime, not a state secret,” discusses the obfuscation of facts through the invocation of state secrets privilege in the Binyam Mohamed torture case, the lack of accountability for torturers within the justice system and the large number of innocent people swept up in the “war on terror” dragnet.
Ray McGovern, former senior analyst at the CIA, discusses the successor to IAEA Director General Mohamed ElBaradei, the rift between US intelligence agencies and the Obama administration over the 2007 Iran NIE, why Adm. Mike Mullen’s resistance to Israel’s hawkishness on Iran appears to be weakening, how the terrorist attacks of US-supported Jundallah have disrupted diplomacy with Iran and the new poll that indicates Americans are ready to be lied into yet another war.
Chris Floyd, author of Empire Burlesque – High Crimes and Low Comedy in the Bush Imperium, discusses the media-designated “post-war” status of Iraq, the real “Mission Accomplished” goal of establishing a permanent US military footprint in Iraq, Ahmed “hero in error” Chalabi’s talent for remaining politically relevant despite a total lack of public support, why only war criminals on the losing side need worry about prosecution and how ending the US empire would improve nearly all aspects of society.
Will Grigg, author of Liberty in Eclipse, discusses the Second Amendment’s waning influence in the state of Massachusetts, the submit-to-authority indoctrination of children in public schools, the militaristic rituals that intrude on nearly all American social events, how the manufactured partisan divide functions as a political distraction and the Republican Party’s hijacking of the Tea Party movement.
The Other Scott Horton (no relation), international human rights lawyer, professor and contributing editor at Harper’s magazine, discusses renowned forensic pathologist Michael Baden’s skepticism about the Guantanamo “suicides” autopsies, the newest Seton Hall Law School report that rebuts the Pentagon response to their previous Gitmo expose, the known existence of sworn statements written by Camp Delta witnesses that have yet to be released, major news media reports on the “suicides” that should be forthcoming and Rahm Emanuel’s tight control over Attorney General Eric Holder and any possible Bush administration prosecutions.
Grant F. Smith, director of the Institute for Research: Middle Eastern Policy in Washington, D.C., discusses the US Treasury’s Office of Terrorism and Financial Intelligence (TFI) that is closely allied with the Israel lobby and enforces sanctions on Iran, how sanctions and embargoes punish the law abiding and make billionaires out of black market operators, Israel’s importation of Iran-sourced pistachios that violates its own “Trading With the Enemy Act” and how the debate over Iran’s nuclear program diverts attention away from the intractable Palestinian problem.
Freelance journalist Petra Bartosiewicz discusses the trial and conviction of US-educated Pakistani neuroscientist Aafia Siddiqui for the attempted murder of US soldiers in Afghanistan, seemingly crucial setbacks in the prosecution’s case that were disregarded by the jury, allegations that during the previous five years Siddiqui was a “ghost prisoner” subject to torture at Bagram prison and the immunity of federal prosecutors to charges of gross misconduct.