tv Cross Talk RT July 1, 2013 9:30pm-10:01pm EDT
and security has given the u.s. government precedented an unchecked amount of power to see a crackdown on dissent that's unparalleled in recent history including an outright if sold on whistleblowers obama alone has already charged people with a log draft to during world war one that was designated for foreign spies the latest to be charge of course is edward snowden an american citizen who has revealed the extent of the n.s.a. spying apparatus and all those snowden story continues to make international headlines other less well known lesser known whistleblowers over the years have also exposed disturbing aspects of the security state one of which is susan lindauer. an author of the book extreme prejudice the terrifying story of the patriot act and the cover ups in the nine eleven and iraq she's joining us now to talk about her experience whistleblowing about iraq and nine eleven and also just the greater war on whistleblowers here she is susan thank you so much for coming on
thank you it's great to be with you so you claim that you were indicted not charged indicted under the patriot act can you break down the most simple of terms of the audience what happened to you my story is a cautionary tale in this age of edward snowden and julian assange both of those men are very right to be afraid of the u.s. courts and there are special considerations that russian ecuador need to take into account when considering whether to grant asylum requests or whether to return them to the united states and my case illustrates that i was the chief cia asset covering iraq and libya at the united nations for from one nine hundred ninety five to two thousand and three i gave advance warning about nine eleven and there was a peace option on the table with iraq that the united states wanted to suppress thirty days after i requested to testify on capitol hill i went to congress had requested to testify. through proper channels i woke to hear the f.b.i.
pounding on my door with an arrest warrant on the patriot act. and you were accused of accepting unsolicited bribes from iran basically a spy for iraqi intelligence and that's incorrect that was incorrect but. that is that was incorrect information there was no evidence to support it so after the united states made the accusations they invoked the patriot act to deprive me of the right to a trial they refused even to grant my request for a hearing i was hit with secret charges secret evidence secret grand jury testimony i was never allowed to know who had accused me of what crime the government had no obligation to prove provide any evidence that the crime ever occurred but i was then. in the court of public opinion i was already
convicted of course just like all these other whistleblowers that we're seeing today so let's talk about the warnings that you are trying to get about nine eleven and you said in april of two thousand and one you were actually told by by someone higher up in the administration that about an imminent attack i mean specific details here world trade center hijacking of airplanes what were you working on that you needed to know that information when you said i was the back channel to i was a covert back channel to the iraqi embassy and my cia handler dr richard fuz instructed me to pass a message in april of two thousand and one to iraqi diplomats and the iraqi ambassador that the united states was seeking in any fragment of intelligence regarding airplane hijackings and a known strike on the world trade center and the threat that the united states was threatening war with iraq in from the highest levels of government quote and when you're back to. well it's very precise quote above the secretary of state and above
the cia director now that's only three people the president of the united states the vice president and the secretary of defense and that meant that all three of those individuals already knew about nine eleven in april of two thousand and one and we know now that there were i mean dozens of warning if that went well beyond the august sixth p.t.b. that everyone talks about i mean we're talking about the light blinking red for months and months yes susan what my question i guess if people knew specifics i mean we're talking about specifics not just warning bin laden you know. why didn't more people call it the government's total plea of incompetence after the family did well what the government did was the government made an example of those of us who knew the truth and they said if you if you cross the line now i want to emphasize i requested to testify through proper channels i was a whistleblower but i did it through congress i tried to do it through congress and
and a lot of whistleblowers are citing my case as evidence that going through the proper channels is not going to work and is not going to protect the public or the whistleblower it makes no difference if the government feels threatened they will attack you even if you're doing everything right so why not make sure that the public has the information so you're see if you'd known about the iraqi piece option the whole world could have stopped the iraq war of course so you were trying to broker peace between iraq as this liaison for the government and so are you saying that the government purposefully allowed the nine eleven to happen made nine eleven happened yes and that they were not interested in avoiding a war with iraq they had already decided they were that if the nine eleven conspiracy we maximize damage on the towers that there would be a perfect pretext for war and they were overriding iraq's risk. wants to that was
to invite the f.b.i. to send a task force on terrorism into baghdad with authorization to conduct a pre nine eleven investigation iraq said if you think that there is evidence here come get it we want to help you because we want to preserve the peace option what's weird is why didn't they tell you to go try to broker between saudi arabia or afghanistan i mean they knew that then lot and i mean bin laden was involved in the peace and the briefings why rock it seems so non sequitur exactly there was no and saddam hussein was one of our best sources on terrorism intelligence throughout the ninety's iraq was very afraid of the islamic jihad these who might destabilize the secular regime and take advantage of the poverty caused by sanctions to try to bring about some islamic revolution so saddam was very eager to help identify terrorists conspiracies and he was these saw that as a strong point of his administration that he could reach across the table and keep a line open to washington and that's what i had to do because even under sanctions
we still had to protect national international security from terrorist threat in light of the recent n.s.a. revelations susan i mean you yourself were really harsh crackdown from the government i mean even the author of the patriot act those that he said that he never intended it to be used in the way that it is now i mean what do you think when you're looking at everything that's happened over the last decade did you foresee it ever getting to where it's gone and how pervasive it's because i was the second arab american ever indicted on the patriot act and the patriot act has criminalized dissension it says that sedition is the act of opposing the government through nonviolent means has become such a threat that free speech itself is now criminalized by the patriot act and i think we're going to see the patriot act applied to many more people many and many more situations that were never intended but once the government gives itself power. or
it does not revoke its power of ever and we're seeing now the espionage act now eight people charged in the espionage act the group was a war daniel ellsberg so that's no tinsley was the most important one in american history do you agree with. me that there's a lot more that we're not being well edward snowden is a to appears to be a tipping point and i consider that to be very valuable a lot of what it was snowden has revealed is already known to those of us inside the intelligence community but it's not known by the wider public and he has forced this issue into the public domain where ordinary americans are now confronting the extreme surveillance that's going on but i can tell you that for several years. within a ten mile radius of every home in the united states in the most isolated rural areas there is someone listening to your phone calls and reading your e-mails and we've known this for a long time and to wrap it up we're about thirty seconds left but given the enormous punishment that we are seeing on whistleblowers why are you not treated the same as kerry aku mannings do you mean how were you able to hear him dr i i was
held in prison on cars will air force base for a year i was held under indictment for five years with no trial i was forced to go into court with no attorney present to fight bail revocations that had no justification i said if you have evidence convict me you think you have evidence i why do mantas be present i demand that you present it to a jury of my peers they said no way because they didn't have any evidence and there was nothing i never took money from the iraqis all thank you for coming on sharing your story definitely a really crazy time whistle blowers and i'm glad that you're speaking out and shit thank you very much. all president obama's been making the rounds in africa speaking at various of. in
addressing a multitude of issues and in almost every speech he's given he's taken the time to praise nelson mandela the former anti-apartheid revolutionary who eventually became south africa's first black president and surprisingly the corporate media has jumped on the rhetoric she says you know where president obama has made a point of honoring nelson mandela's legacy at every point on his trip today he called it an honor and a privilege to tour robben island where mandela was imprisoned for so many years the president is expected to highlight mandela's legacy and point to him as an example of bringing about changes once thought impossible i expect him to talk about the impact that nelson mandela has had on his life that's right apparently obama has always considered mandela a personal hero like i wanted to say about him during his most recent speech in south africa. as i may be aware of this but i actually took my first step in the political life. because of south africa. and i knew that while brave people
were imprisoned just off the shores on robben island. my own government in the united states was not standing on their site. and that's why i got him home. what was known as the divestment. in the united states. it was the first time i ever attached myself to a cause you heard that right folks a young barack obama cared so much about justice in south africa that it actually drove him to get into politics we're moving tribute too bad i'm buying it see if obama's empty words actually held water he would be standing on the right side of history the side that nelson mandela has always stood on as a young south african living under full apartheid mandela became involved in and to clone a politics that worked to dismantle the oppressive system of institutionalized racism in one nine hundred sixty two mandela was convicted of sabotage and conspiracy and
sense to life in prison as a political dissident this was a man who fought against corruption and oppression even if it meant letting him in jail for the rest of his life and then there is obama a man who's presided over a system of oppression one that criminalizes dissent under obama those who expose corruption are silenced labeled as traitors or terrorists and in fact for decades nelson mandela was officially labeled a terrorist in this country he was on the terror watch list all the way up until two thousand and eight and you know it's quite interesting that obama went to prison in robben island where mandela spent eighteen years of his life for pensive reflection where he called the jail a symbol of injustice i wonder if during that time in the empty cell obama consider the inhumane imprisonment of the one hundred sixty six men who are currently in prison at guantanamo bay tortured force fed all held without trial and with no end
in sight but obama's hypocritical rhetoric about looking up to a man who represents everything he's not doesn't come without a sense of irony this is perhaps the most offensive part of obama's. and it was south african apartheid which inspired him to become a politician is this obama currently supports apartheid a system that gives racial discrimination legitimacy is alive and well in a little country called israel and every year three billion dollars of taxpayer money is used to sponsor israel's apartheid state and oppression against the palestinians so obama save your preaching for the blind because the only similarity that you share with nelson mandela is your african descent because when it comes to everything that's right you couldn't be more wrong. still to come tonight the supreme court ruled to overturn part of the voting rights act so how will this affect americans the next time they go to the polls greg palast brought up the
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look at the lucky to have you ever seen anything like the truck. just in the last week the supreme court has made a number of high profile rulings on major issues affecting american citizens one of these decisions struck down the defense of marriage act is unconstitutional giving same sex marriages the same federal rights as their heterosexual counterparts and although this victory was celebrated as a giant leap forward for l.g.b. t.v.
rights it overshadowed another major rolling that may have set the country back decades the court overturned section four of the nine hundred sixty five voting rights act which dictates that any. it is made to say to election laws be subject to approval by the federal government many say that that decision was far reaching implications on everything from redistricting to voter id laws and will usher in a new wave of discrimination that will impact millions of minority voters so how exactly does this ruling disenfranchise so many people on vested journalist and author of the book billionaires and ballot bandits how to steal an election in one easy steps greg palast joins me now from new york to break it all down what is going on greg. glad be with you abby what's what's happening here it's it was the klu klux corn they did everything but you know i think that they had to stop thomas from wearing his white good. now i know it's funny but it's also a great tragedy because what the court said is that the racial practices of fifty
years ago and which caused the one nine hundred sixty five voting rights act to be passed at the plea of martin luther king that those practices are eradicated will know jim crow is not gone in fact he's quite alive in cyberspace and that's the problem we actually have a greater distance franchised and problem of black voters hispanic voters and by the way one group is really affected is american natives voters we're talking about maybe six million voters to nine million voters are going to lose their right to vote i want to repeat that six to nine million voters are going to lose their right to vote because of the supreme court's action section for pre-clearance what that's all about and it's a fancy term preclears what that means is if you're going to jack around with the voter rules if you're going to move and close down voting stations in black
neighborhoods so that you have lines that are seven and eight hours long i saw this myself in the last election if you're going to run have these racist tactics then you're going to have to ask the justice department first if you can do this pull this stunt now no one will have to clear anything what that means is that you've got a complaint buddy you've been waiting in line for eight hours you show up and they say hey you're a felon and you've never gotten a traffic ticket these are real cases and very i add i want to drive and i mean that we hear the argument all the time that you know go to the voting booth present an id what's wrong with that i mean really is there any evidence at all that voter fraud is happening voter fraud not election. ok you know yeah the great fraudulent voters where are they you know that the well let's put it this way in one of the states it's going to be let off the hook on pre-clearance of florida the governor said that there were one hundred eighty thousand illegal aliens on the voter rolls and that somehow over one hundred thousand people swam from mexico showed up in
florida and registered to vote there giving their name and address so they're ready to be deported just to vote so the section four stop them stop the state of florida from removing one hundred eighty thousand voters almost all of them hispanic and african-american voters and they stop them this time and they said you have to prove that there actually are similar legal alien voters and they found two they found one a republican from austria and the other was a an american soldier in iraq he hadn't received his citizenship papers yet come on get you out of a reminder well we need to start changing laws to really so these two people can't vote anymore i mean let's talk about the lobbying forces because really i know that there are some supreme court justices who have some sketchy connections some collusion with alec what are the main lobbying forces pushing through these laws there are two main lobbying forces first maybe you've heard of the koch brothers
they have a group called americans for prosperity the real danger is not and of course it's their prosperity that they that they're pushing america towards the main thing is that they've spent about one hundred million dollars on a database called themis it's you know it's like something out of dr strangelove or dr no you know they the themis machine this is how they come up with names of people who are who are supposedly illegal aliens who are supposedly felons it's tricks that katherine harris pulled in one thousand nine hundred eighty to steal the election for the bush's it has and it's not only not change they've spread out the katherine harris act to fifty states so the koch brothers have a themis machine karl rove and a bunch of other billionaire. by the way the third koch brothers named bill bill koch has given a million dollars to create what ultimately became the hundred million dollar data trust database again these are private databases that know whether you've downloaded porn in the last two hours abbi so the they if you think the n.s.a.
spying scandal something what about the koch brothers spying scandal they're allowed to do this where is it prohibited to our government to surveys and those lists to clean the lists and you know you probably i want to address something else really under that you said that this is a foundation for republican takeover in coming years however the democratic party as it stands is so pro-business so pro gwar it's hard for me to believe that this takeover is being engineered solely by republicans do you really think there's that much of a difference in the two parties. in both fifty yes remember of first of all jim crow used to be a democratic trick it was democrats stopping black people from voting fifty years ago and now it's republicans and it's not because they dislike the color of black people skin their brown people or red people they don't like color their votes blue now is it only republicans who are stealing both not a chance in fact that is why that is why the republicans are getting away with it because their people use these voter suppression tactics all over there was
a state senator in illinois for example named barack obama whose career began when he challenged the right to vote and the the signatures of black people in one of the poorest districts on the south side of chicago had his opponent removed so that there was he ran unopposed because not because not because he was elected but because he used a really smelly racial trick to remove his opponent from the ballot so you know so look that's how the machines work both parties do it right now the big machines the big threats are coming from the republicans but i saw democrats do it too because it's not really about republicans or democrats it's about those who. own the nation and those who are who are simply there you know with the it's about the landlords and the people who are just living here at their grace and millions of people votes being thrown under the bus on the guise of really social change and social movements i mean greg you've written extensively about election fraud which is
happening in more and more it's cost this country two elections so far which you have read extensively about two thousand two thousand and four so great why is that we hear so much about voter fraud but barely anything about election fraud is that a more serious issue. well yeah i mean in fact i should tell you that that the elections assistance commission did a study and found out that in an average year there are six six out of one hundred million voters six voters who commit voter fraud that is vote using someone else's name or or vote that a dead person or are an illegal alien six out of one hundred million voters then we have laws that have knocked out six to nine million voters and each election and again while it happens to be mostly democratic voters that are affected mostly voters of color the real issue when i've done the statistical analysis is that it's poor voters for example in new mexico you had poor white voters and you had native
american voters whose ballots were thrown out by democrats because democrats were trying to push through a new you raney a mine on native land so they could let the natives vote on that what they did was they give them something called provisional ballots they said oh your name's on the voter rolls or you're not really a citizen they tell this to native americans who've been citizens before there was america you're not a citizen you need a provisional ballot and then they threw out all their ballots because they said they didn't put them in the right on the looks because they gave them the wrong on floats and that was done by democratic party officials so the game is bipartisan and it's always them against us it's those who have those versus those who would like to vote and make this a democracy fortunately and we need to take back our electoral system great if we ever want to truly have true representation and thank you for writing about it everyone check out your book millionaires and ballot and it's you get some tips about how we can take the system back always amazing to have you on greg palast
thanks so much thanks as. well if you want to know what i'm doing when i'm not on air and check me out on twitter abby martin you see you can follow me there you'll find all my tweets thinking to segment the show as well as i have throughout the day and also please help us get. you can expect one meeting on with her to never say that ok we'll throw them out fags virginia trending on the twitter sphere but only with your help so that twitter check me out at abby martin and that's it for our show today guys i'll see you right back here tomorrow to break the start all over again.
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on target in washington d.c. here's what's coming up tonight the big picture in the wake of the largest recorded protests in human history it looks like it could be revolution redux in egypt so what's next for the most populous country in the arab world more on that in tonight's special monday edition of the big picture politics panel in just a moment also although the media likes to portray themselves as serial killers and outcasts so if you're sociopaths are a lot more common than you might think so common you might sit next to one on your ride home from work or the men and women who hide in plain sight really as dangerous as hollywood makes them look and it's time the fossil fuel industry paid us all back for the damage.