Columnist, editor and well known activist Margaret Kimberley joins us today to talk about a 1967 speech at the Riverside church in New York City by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., “Beyond Vietnam: Time to Break the Silence”. We talk about the prescience of the lesser known but epic speech and its relevance today. We also talk more broadly about NATO, the new Cold War, the yellow vests protest in France, Brexit, Greece and American politics.
Margaret Kimberley is a senior columnist and editor at the Black Agenda Report and an activist for peace and justice issues. Her work has been published in many newspapers and websites and she has been a guest on radio shows around the country. Margaret has spoken at Riverside Church herself for seminars and student groups and she speaks to us today from New York.
Recorded on January 28, 2019. Music by Fluorescent Grey.
Journalist Whitney Webb joins us today from Chile to talk about the budding “trust industry” -- the latest crusade (and gold rush) to fight fake news. A new, for-profit startup called Newsguard, aims to partner with major tech platforms, marketing firms and other institutions to mark news and information websites with color-coded flags to show consumers which ones are reliable. It is already installed as a feature of Microsoft’s mobile web browser and is running as a browser extension in some public libraries.
Newsguard markets itself as a “a news literacy tool,” “a research tool” and claims that it will “tell you if a news site is reliable” with the lofty goal of
“restoring trust and accountability.“ One of their founders has made the rounds in the print, online and TV media pledging to fight fake news, disinformation and Russian propaganda.
Whitney Webb did her own extensive research, fact-checking and analysis on the credibility and reliablity of Newsguard itself: its founders, financial backers, advisory board and staff and she discovered a lot of troubling facts. She also provides insightful analysis on the risk and potential outcome if Newsguard succeeds in becoming a ubiquitous, involuntary service, and some more upbeat advice on ways to deal with a scenario that threatens to blacklist genuine, independent media outlets that allow dissent and refuse to stick to the establishment-approved narratives.
Whitney Webb is an American journalist and staff writer for MintPress News who has been published by and done interviews with many other independent media outlets. She currently lives with her family in southern Chile. FOLLOW Whitney on Twitter @_whitneywebb . Find her work at MintPress News.
Recorded on January 26, 2019. Music by Fluorescent Grey.
How a NeoCon-Backed “Fact Checker” Plans to Wage War on Independent Media, Whitney Webb, Mint Press News
Dr. Neda Bolourchi joins us for a discussion of several major issues around Iran -- involvement in Syria, the complicated alliance with Russia and their decentralized power structure. We also focus on the Green Revolution, the MEK and especially the misplaced expectations from some factions in the American foreign policy establishment that Iran’s people, especially their minority communities, will bring about the regime change that their adversaries desire.
To quote Dr. Bolourchi from her recent Atlantic Council article:
“Like previous American administrations, the Trump Administration seeks regime change in Tehran. And like the current White House, but more fervently, the Washington establishment assumes Iranian minorities will join in what is being called in certain circles ‘transformative change.’
Recent nationwide demonstrations in Iran—over the state of the economy, Tehran’s regional activities, corruption, and general disenchantment with the Islamic government—are strengthening the Trump administration’s hopes. But attempts to catalyze religious or ethnic minority protests as a means to transform the Islamic Republic have been a failed US policy for almost as long as the theocracy has existed. This time will be no different. History demonstrates ethnic and religious minorities will neither spur nor lead regime change.”
Dr. Bolourchi is Assistant Professor at Rutgers University-New Brunswick Center for Middle Eastern Studies. She is an interdisciplinary scholar who focuses on modern legal practices in and the history of the Middle East, particularly Iran. She is deeply engaged in legal and archival theory and methodology as she continues a book project on the ideas of political theology, nationalism, war, and minority communities. She is also working on an oral history project and she completed years of research in Iran, Syria, and Armenia for her doctoral dissertation at Columbia University.
Recorded on January 18, 2019. Music by Fluorescent Grey.
Scott Horton joins us from Texas to talk about the withdrawal of troops from Syria and Afghanistan. Scott and Joanne offer some cautiously optimistic analysis on Trump’s latest actions on war and foreign policy and how he could use a “Horton’s Rule” strategy to his advantage, outflanking Left and Right opponents with detente and de-escalation. Is there an “only Nixon could go to China” opportunity for Trump and will he deliver on it?
We also discuss the dilemma that Establishment Democrats’ have created for themselves as they assume a twisted political opposition to scaling down wars and now routinely provide unquestioning fealty to the national security state. Lastly, we review William Atkin’s dissenting farewell memo to NBC and the media’s passive acceptance and cheerleading of perpetual war.
Scott Horton is the author of the book Fool’s Errand: Time to End the War in Afghanistan. He’s the managing director of the Libertarian Institute,, opinion editor at Antiwar.com, host of Antiwar Radio on Pacifica and the host of the Scott Horton Show podcast. Scott has spent the past two decades giving voice to ardent anti-war and anti-interventionist activists, experts and reporters from across the spectrum and has done nearly five thousand interviews. Find his work at LibertarianInstitute.org, antiwar.com, ScottHorton.org Patreon.com/ScottHortonShow and FoolsErrand.us.
Recorded on January 3, 2019. Music by Fluorescent Grey.