Wednesday, April 27, 2022

Democracy Now: 
"AMY GOODMAN: In the U.S. media, you have — it’s a redefinition of general news, right? News from the generals on all of the military tactics. But we want to talk to you about diplomacy. What do you think is a possible path to peace at this point? Do you think there is one?

PETER ZALMAYEV: At this point, I don’t think so. ..."

-->Peter Zalmayev seems to be the voice of authority when it comes to Democracy Now's take on Ukraine. But why is he even on the show at all? He has been on Canadian Broadcasting, CNN, BBC, and many other mainstream media spreading an anti-peace message. Yet our Amy Goodman never challenges his assessments, nor takes the time to alert listeners to Zalmayev's dubious background.  

Zalmayev has received payments from the Council on Foreign Relations, a gathering of Elites and Cold Warriors. He has worked as a policy advisor to the Joint Staff at the Department of Defense, and the Directorate of Strategic Stability, Strategic Deterrence, and Nuclear Policy Division. He has also represented the Joint Staff in "supporting the chairman’s 'military advice' to senior leaders" (Columbia University Alumni & Postdoc Notes). 

In addition, he is a board member of the National Endowment for Democracy, described as "an agency for regime change and/or and an instrument of US foreign policy following the particular ideologies and interests of the United States government. The history of the organization shows that it was created in order to assume some activities the CIA used to do before around the world (Wikipedia).

Finally, Zalmayev seems to have been secretly paid $100,000 for his work with the American Jewish Committee in branding another man, Ashot Egiazaryan, a former Russian politician and businessman, as an antisemite (Think Tank Watch). 

Peter Zalmayev is not a reliable voice for Democracy Now. He is a corrupted, establishment voice. Shame on Amy Goodman for interviewing him. 


Common Dreams:

"The progressive caucus of North Carolina's state Democratic Party is revoking its endorsement of state Sen. Valerie Foushee, citing her acceptance of thousands of dollars from the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, the anti-Palestinian rights group which has been influential in U.S. politics for decades.

The caucus said Sunday it had unsuccessfully urged Foushee to reject $165,000 in funding from individuals associated with AIPAC due to its support for more than three dozen Republican politicians who objected to the certification of the 2020 presidential election results ...

AIPAC's donations to Foushee's campaign represented more than half of her total quarterly fundraising, according to campaign finance disclosures cited by the progressive caucus. 'AIPAC is a single-issue organization that sees nothing wrong with supporting insurrectionists in the U.S. as long as those insurrectionists continue to align their congressional votes with AIPAC goals,' said the group. 'We denounce AIPAC for its support of those who acted to destroy our democracy.' "

-->Criticism of AIPAC is rare in our media. Always eager to protect Israel's image, The NYT didn't print this story either.


Common Dreams:

"87% of IMF Loans Forcing Austerity on Crisis-Ravaged Nations. 'This epitomizes the IMF's double standard: It is warning rich countries against austerity while forcing poorer ones into it.'

The conditions of nearly 90% of the International Monetary Fund's pandemic-related loans are forcing developing nations suffering some of the world's worst humanitarian crises to implement austerity measures that fuel further impoverishment and inequality, an analysis published Tuesday by Oxfam International revealed. Oxfam found that "13 out of the 15 IMF loan programs negotiated during the second year of the pandemic require new austerity measures such as taxes on food and fuel or spending cuts that could put vital public services at risk.

This stands in stark contrast with IMF managing director Kristalina Georgieva's admonition to the European Union last year that the wealthy bloc should not endanger its economic recovery with 'the suffocating force of austerity.' "

-->Racist austerity measures threatening poor countries? The US media didn't bother covering this story of how big banks rob impoverished people in the Third World. 

Thursday, April 21, 2022


"On Wednesday, President Joe Biden made headlines pledging to support Amazon workers trying to unionize the nation’s largest retailer, declaring 'Amazon, here we come' and boasting that 'I created the White House task force on worker organization and empowerment to make sure that the choice to join a union belongs to workers alone.'

But as campaign cash from Amazon-linked donors and anti-union law firms has flooded into the coffers of Biden and his Democratic Party, the president has so far refused to use his executive authority to actually implement any of that task force’s major recommendations — even though its proposals were far weaker than his 2020 campaign pledges and likely wouldn’t have helped Amazon workers’ union drive.

What might have helped are executive actions Biden continues to avoid. For instance, he has refused to reinstate a Barack Obama–era rule requiring companies like Amazon to disclose all of their spending to crush union drives. Biden has also declined to use his executive authority to halt federal contracts to Amazon amid its union-busting campaign. In fact, Amazon was awarded a $10 billion contract last summer, months after the president promised on the campaign trail to 'ensure federal contracts only go to employers who sign neutrality agreements committing not to run anti-union campaigns.' ”

-->Never a publication that questions the progressive motives of mainstream Democrats, the NYT didn't cover this story. In this way, the NYT supports the illusion of a functioning two party system.


Common Dreams:

"World-renowned dissident and linguist Noam Chomsky highlighted the hypocrisy of U.S. government leaders denouncing and demanding accountability for war crimes allegedly committed by Russian forces waging war on Ukraine during an interview published Thursday. ...

'We're a rogue state, the leading rogue state by a huge dimension—nobody's even close,' Chomsky said of the United States. 'And yet we can call for war crimes trials of others, without batting an eyelash.'

'It's interesting to look at the reaction to all of this in the more civilized part of the world, the Global South,' he continued. 'They look at it; they condemn the invasion, say it's a horrible crime. But the basic response is: What's new? What's the fuss about? We've been subjected to this from you from as far back as it goes. Biden calls Putin a war criminal; yeah, takes one to know one. It's the basic reaction."

-->Our world renowned intellectual, Noam Chomsky, never gets reported on by our subservient media. Especially during times of war, Chomsky is uniformly blacked out. But what a price we as Americans pay for not hearing or reading the truth!


Common Dreams:

"A coalition of progressive leaders from across the globe demanded Monday that the Biden administration immediately drop all charges against WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, who is currently jailed in a high-security London prison as he fights U.S. extradition attempts.

In a letter to Biden and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), more than 30 progressive advocates, intellectuals, and former heads of state argued that dropping the Espionage Act charges against Assange would 'send a strong message to the world: that freedom of expression, freedom of thought, and freedom of the press constitute an instrument that can controvert the interests of any government, including that of the United States of America.'

'The cases where there are reports of serious violations of freedom of expression would also be impacted by the dropping of the 18 charges against Assange,' the letter reads. 'It would affirm the defense of this fundamental human right and would undoubtedly represent a clear and robust sign that everyone can express their opinion without fear of retaliation; that all the press outlets can give news to all the citizens of the world, with the certainty that the pluralism of thought is guaranteed.' "

-->Julian Assange is another truth teller who is banned by our mainstream media. He offered the world proof of US war crimes in the Middle East. No journalist or writer who exposes the US empire will ever be set free.

Wednesday, April 13, 2022


"Jewish Federation of Northeastern New York (JFNENY) will host an in-person Ukraine support rally at Temple Israel."

-->That was the lead in to Alan Chartock and Hank Greenberg discussing Ukraine on NPR early morning radio. They talked about how the Jewish Federation has always supported human rights, and that standing against racism has always been part of the Jewish experience in this country and abroad. Alan agreed, and commended Greenberg's recent trip to Poland to study the refuge problem created by the war in Ukraine. 

What wasn't mentioned? Well the fact that Israel treats its 5 million Palestines like dirt in the occupied territories, the West Bank and Gaza. For decades, Palestinians have been beaten and shot for demanding the very same thing that Hank Greenberg so highly recommends for the Ukrainian people. 

Jewish Voice For Peace has raised some other troubling information about how Jewish Federation groups have funded Islamophobia in the US. Far from resisting racism against Muslims, these groups have funneled millions into hate campaigns.

"Despite its stated commitment to 'stand together to say NO to all forms of hate,' the Jewish United Fund/Jewish Federation of Metropolitan Chicago (JUF) funneled hundreds of thousands of dollars between the years 2011-2014 to groups the Southern Poverty Law Center labels 'anti-Muslim fear mongers." -JVP report March 2017

Are there awards for hypocrisy? If there are, then Alan Chartock and Hank Greenberg would surely be among the top contenders. 


Common Dreams:

"It is exceedingly rare for a major congressional committee to hold hearings on 'corporate greed' leading to corporate profiteering and surging prices on consumer goods. On April 5, 2022, Senate Budget Chairman, Senator Bernie Sanders (I-VT) chartered uncensored territory on corporate avarice with a lead witness, former Secretary of Labor, Robert Reich, now a professor at the University of California, Berkeley.

Although the hearing covered bread and butter issues, the mainstream corporate media ignored it. Massive coverage of the war in Ukraine does not offend advertisers, while the corporate war on consumers directly involves corporate advertisers.

Corporate greed takes hundreds of thousands of American lives every year (think the opioid disaster, the tobacco cancer business, the toxins in the air and water), not to mention injuries and illnesses stemming from corporations that put extra profit over concerns about public health and safety." -Ralph Nader

-->Blame Putin and the Russians all the time, rather than looking at corporate greed. That seems to be the formula for Biden and most Democrats. And our mainstream media goes right along with it.



"In case you missed it, Harvard Law School’s International Human Rights Clinic (IHRC) lately issued a report that finds Israel’s treatment of Palestinians on the West Bank amounts to the crime of apartheid. The study, 'Apartheid in the Occupied West Bank: A Legal Analysis of Israel’s Actions' came out on February 28 in the wake of five longer, wider-ranging, apartheid reports published since 2020 – and just before the UN Special Rapporteur on Human Rights in the occupied Palestinian territories published another apartheid report on March 21.

Prepared by the law school’s human rights clinic in partnership with Ramallah-based Addameer Prisoner Support and Human Rights Association, the report was released without fanfare and received minimal press coverage. And it has, so far, drawn no public condemnation by the Israel lobby. ... Although only 22 pages long, the report includes 130 footnotes that deftly back up the text and let readers drill down further. The narrow focus shines a searching light on the customized legal instruments and processes implemented since 1967 to deprive West Bank Palestinians of their human, civil and political rights.

The precise description of the lawfare by which Israel has, with impunity, intimidated, confused, humiliated, bullied, imprisoned, tortured and killed Palestinians since 1967 generates a compelling cumulative impact. Individual items in the litany are not in themselves news but to see them depicted in their coordinated entirety is to see how the Israeli machine of injustice does its anti-human work."

-->Our media, including the NYT deals with news like this by simply burying it until a later date. For example, the NYT has just acknowledged Amnesty's report on Israel being an apartheid state. That story is weeks old, but the delay reveals what the Israel Lobby has done to our country's free press.

Thursday, April 07, 2022

The Electronic Intifada: 
"NYT finally acknowledges Amnesty’s apartheid report. ... Amnesty issued its groundbreaking conclusion that Israel commits the crime against humanity of apartheid – one of the most serious crimes listed in the International Criminal Court’s founding Rome Statute – on 1 February. But it took until last week for the newspaper of record to even mention it. ...

In fact, Israeli human rights group B’Tselem also found apartheid to be the reality from the Jordan River to the Mediterranean Sea. Human Rights Watch found that Israel perpetrates the crime of apartheid in the Palestinian territories it occupied in 1967. It concluded however that in Israel – and occupied Palestinian territory – 'the Israeli government has demonstrated an intent to maintain the domination of Jewish Israelis over Palestinians.'

After ignoring it for almost two months, The New York Times has done its readers a further disservice by not going into detail about Amnesty’s report on how Israel commits the crime of apartheid in the land it has seized from Palestinians during and since its founding in 1948. From the way the newspaper has also misrepresented the position of B’Tselem and downplayed that of HRW, it would appear that the goal is doing damage control for Israel rather than accurately informing readers."

-->Yes, the NYT did a grave injustice to its readers by hiding this story. And the newspaper did an even greater disservice to our country in using its pages to protect Israeli Apartheid. 



"How Much Less Newsworthy Are Civilians in Other Conflicts? A lot less, particularly when they’re victims of the US. As US news media covered the first shocking weeks of the Russian invasion of Ukraine, some media observers—like FAIR founder Jeff Cohen (Common Dreams, 2/28/22)—have noted their impressions of how coverage differed from wars past, particularly in terms of a new focus on the impact on civilians.

To quantify and deepen these observations, FAIR studied the first week of coverage of the Ukraine war (2/24–3/2/22) on ABC World News Tonight, CBS Evening News and NBC Nightly News. ...

Comparing this coverage to that of other conflicts reveals both a familiar reliance on US officials to frame events, as well as a newfound ability to cover the impact on civilians—when those civilians are white and under attack by an official US enemy, rather than by the US itself. ...

In effect, then, US news media have largely allowed US officials to frame the terms of the conflict for viewers. While officials lambasted the Russian government and emphasized 'what we’re going to do to help the Ukrainian people in the struggle' (NBC, 3/1/22), no sources questioned the US’s own role in contributing to the conflict (, 3/4/22), or the impact of Western sanctions on Russian civilians.

-->All Ukraine war, all the time. The NYT and NPR seem particularly glad to wallow in all that suffering. How the US loves to take the high road. Maybe that is because our country has occupied and committed war crimes in any number of countries in the last decade. 


Democracy Now:

"Is a Peace Deal Near? Ukraine Won’t Join NATO in Return for Russian Withdrawal, Security Guarantees."

-->How refreshing it is to turn to Democracy Now amidst all this war propaganda from our major media. But wait. A recent Democracy Now program (March 30) had all the hallmarks of NPR. The guest roster was limited to only two experts, Ukrain's President Zelensky and Peter Zalmayev, director of the Eurasia Foundation, a think tank funded by the National Endowment for Democracy. No mention of the endowment was offered to listeners, especially its close connection to the CIA and its long term role in spreading US propaganda abroad. Only today, the endowment was spreading its propaganda through Democracy Now. Here is what Peter Zalmayev had to say:

"We’re seeing this campaign of terror that Vladimir Putin has unleashed against the entire country of Ukraine that’s continuing, you know, indiscriminate bombardments of civilian areas and strikes on critical infrastructure objects such as oil depots, transportation hubs and roads and railways. It is clear that Vladimir Putin is — remains to be hell-bent on creating as much misery as he can in Ukraine..."

"Well, I think, from the get-go, for Vladimir Putin, this expansion of NATO has been a red herring. He has used it to justify his attempt to grab land, this 19th century war of conquest that he is prosecuting in Ukraine. So, once again, I think it’s not really what Vladimir Putin is after."

So much for Democracy Now's willingness to diverge from the CIA script. Has our Amy Goodman learned to stop worrying and love the empire?