Media Icon Exposes Obama’s War on the Press

By: Cliff Kincaid
Accuracy in Media

Famous Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Seymour Hersh is turning his attention to the Obama administration. He told a left-wing conference over the weekend that the administration is using the NSA on a regular basis against government officials talking to the press. “If they want to, the government is capable of tracking any of us anytime, anyplace,” he said.

Hersh claimed there have been cases of people inside an intelligence service who have talked to reporters and have been told, “We know you’ve talked to this guy such and such a day, cut it out.”

As an example of how the administration manipulates the media and the public, Hersh cited the sacking of United States Army General Stanley McChrystal for making derogatory comments about President Obama and Vice President Biden, while Director of National Intelligence James Clapper remains in his job after lying to Congress.

McChrystal was caught by journalist Michael Hastings in a Rolling Stone article “making fun of the President, making fun of [Joe] Biden, and for that, of course, McChrystal got fired,” Hersh noted. “Here comes Clapper,” he went on. “He looks [Senator Ron] Wyden (D-OR) in the eye at the famous hearing you all know about and lies through his teeth, and nothing happens to him.”

He was talking about James Clapper, director of national intelligence, testifying at an open congressional hearing and being asked whether the NSA collects certain kinds of data. “No sir,” Clapper said. “Not wittingly.” Clapper’s answer was a lie—but he kept his job. Hersh said the message, if you’re an official on the inside of a government agency, is “Do what you want but watch your mouth.”

“That’s a message that somehow escaped us,” Hersh said of the media. “We should have communicated more to you about the message. Obama wouldn’t tolerate a little back-mouthing about him. He wouldn’t tolerate that. But he tolerated somebody going directly to the Congress and lying to their face about it.”

“They own the guy,” he said of the administration and Clapper.

Hersh said it appeared that Michael Hastings, the journalist who broke the McChrystal story, had been “full of coke” when he recently died in a traffic accident. “Why not? If you knew what he did,” Hersh commented.

The public, Hersh said, is catching on to the media manipulation.

He noted a conversation with one member of Congress who had been at the “B.S. hearings” on Syrian poison gas, and had been convinced by the Obama administration that Syrian President Bashar Assad had “delivered the gas himself in a helicopter probably.”

“Anything you want to say, the President got away with,” Hersh said. But the representative turned against the war after meeting with constituents opposed to it.

Turning his attention to Iran, Hersh claimed the administration is being maneuvered by outside forces associated with Israel and Saudi Arabia into a war with Iran, but that Russia’s Vladimir Putin is working to help Obama avoid such an outcome.

He said his old newspaper, The New York Times, has become a pawn in the campaign by selectively quoting pro-war officials.

An iconic figure for much of the media, Hersh was speaking before the Institute for Policy Studies (IPS), a notorious left-wing think tank that is celebrating 50 years of existence, and has a history of collaborating with enemies and adversaries of the United States. Its 50th anniversary booklet included an ad showing longtime employee and Castro apologist Saul Landau, who recently passed away, with a Cuban spy.

The “U.S. campaign to end the Israel Occupation” was given special recognition and treatment at the conference, while James Hoffa of the International Brotherhood of Teamsters signed an ad in the conference booklet saluting IPS for its “progressive analysis, advocacy and activism.”

Although Hersh’s anti-war comments to this audience about Iran were predictable, his recent criticisms of the Obama administration’s handling of the aftermath of the raid that killed Osama bin Laden, and its manipulation of the liberal press in general, have generated some conservative interest and comment. It is not clear to what extent these controversial comments are designed to sell his forthcoming book on national security affairs and generate conservative interest in his charges.

It also remains to be seen whether Hersh’s comments about the fawning media coverage of the Obama administration will lead to liberal media figures reconsidering their devotion to Obama, and exposing his masterful manipulation of reporters and the political process.

Hersh was asked during a panel discussion on the “national security state” about his much-publicized comment to the British Guardian that the killing of Osama bin Laden was a “big lie.” He responded that the Guardian corrected a misimpression about what he was saying, and that he believes Obama ordered the raid and the Navy SEALs killed bin Laden, “but after that everything isn’t true.”

“He was killed there” in Pakistan, Hersh said. But he quickly added, “It was an event before an election. So it became sort of grotesque what happened.” By “what happened,” he was apparently referring to Obama making it an election issue. He refused to go any further, saying he was writing about it.

Hersh, a contributor to the New Yorker, has won numerous awards for his work, several having to do with coverage of wars under Republican presidents. He did take heat from the liberals for his book, The Dark Side of Camelot, about financial and moral corruption on the part of President John F. Kennedy and his administration. However, he failed to uncover the most serious scandals of the Clinton administration, such as the official lies surrounding the destruction of TWA 800 and the evidence of foreign involvement in the Oklahoma City bombing.

Appearing before the IPS panel on October 12 on “the national security state,” Hersh was asked about the interview he gave to The Guardian complaining about media coverage of the Obama administration. The interview was given in July, but the content was just published a couple of weeks ago. “He is angry about the timidity of journalists in America, their failure to challenge the White House and be an unpopular messenger of truth,” the publication said.

The Guardian reported, “The Obama administration lies systematically, he claims, yet none of the leviathans of American media, the TV networks or big print titles, challenge him.”

But some might question why he has only come to this conclusion now, after the Obama administration has been in power for nearly five years. And why was Hersh silent when Obama was running back in 2008, and questions about his background then—as now—cried out for answers?

According to The Guardian, Hersh said about the press, “It’s pathetic, they are more than obsequious, they are afraid to pick on this guy [Obama].”

While he didn’t explicitly praise Edward Snowden’s theft of classified documents from the NSA, he said these documents had forced the media to cover the issue of government surveillance. “About the NSA,” he said, “it’s not new what’s going on. It’s just being talked about more.”

“If you can listen to people, you will listen,” he said of the NSA.

He said the use of drones “is so much worse than you know,” and that an “incredible lack of care” is being taken when picking out terrorist targets.

“What’s going on is insanity,” he said.

While bemoaning U.S. military engagement around the world, Hersh and his friends in the IPS didn’t address the reality of Iranian-sponsored and Islamic terrorism against the United States and Israel. Several speakers expressed the hope that the United Nations would assume more of a role in world affairs and act against threats of U.S. military intervention.

Cliff Kincaid is the Director of the AIM Center for Investigative Journalism and can be contacted at [email protected]. View the complete archives from Cliff Kincaid.


Watcher’s Council Nominations – Pawns In The Obama Shutdown Game Edition

The Watcher’s Council

Welcome to the Watcher’s Council, a blogging group consisting of some of the most incisive blogs in the ‘sphere and the longest running group of its kind in existence. Every week, the members nominate two posts each, one written by themselves and one written by someone from outside the group for consideration by the whole Council. Then we vote on the best two posts, with the results appearing on Friday.

Council News:

Sometimes, you actually get to be a part of the news rather than merely reporting it. Our friend and Council Alumnus Sara over at the Independent Sentinel did just that and spent Sunday at the Million Vet March in DC.

If you want to know what really happened as opposed to what the talking heads in the media are peddling, she was there and she wrote these superb pieces about it, one of which is a Watcher’s Pick this week. But I recommend you read all of them… What Really Happened at the Million Vet March in DC, Mr. Obamachev, We Tore Down These Walls, Million Vet March on Stalag DC and Our Day in Obama’s DC Wasteland. Sara is a great reporter with a keen eye for detail and every one of these articles tell a story that needs to be told. Kudos, Sara!

This week, Ask Marion took advantage of my generous offer of link whorage and earned honorable mention status with a great article.

You can, too! Want to see your work appear on the Watcher’s Council homepage in our weekly contest listing? Didn’t get nominated by a Council member? No worries.

Simply head over to Joshuapundit and post the title and a link to the piece you want considered along with an e-mail address (which won’t be published) in the comments section no later than Monday 6 PM PST in order to be considered for our honorable mention category. Then return the favor by creating a post on your site linking to the Watcher’s Council contest for the week when it comes out Wednesday morning.

Simple, no?

It’s a great way of exposing your best work to Watcher’s Council readers and Council members, while grabbing the increased traffic and notoriety. And how good is that, eh?

So, let’s see what we have this week…

Council Submissions

Honorable Mentions

Non-Council Submissions

Enjoy! And don’t forget to like us on Facebook and follow us Twitter… ’cause we’re cool like that!


The Role Of The Church – By WVIP


The following is an article published by our friends at World Vision In Progress (WVIP):

On 22nd of September 2013, around 500 persons gathered for Divine Sunday Service including another 64 children who were present in the Sunday School Center in the Church compound. Two suicide bombers entered in the compound and exploded themselves while the worshipers were coming out at the end of the Service at All Saints Church, Kohati Gate in Peshawar. […]

On 22nd of September 2013, around 500 persons gathered for Divine Sunday Service including another 64 children who were present in the Sunday School Center in the Church compound. Two suicide bombers entered in the compound and exploded themselves while the worshipers were coming out at the end of the Service at All Saints Church, Kohati Gate in Peshawar.

This city is the Provincial head and a main town in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province which has borne the brunt of a bloody Islamist insurgency in recent years.

This bloody blast took almost 130 lives and injured 169 persons. 120 People are still in the different hospitals. 12 women become widows, 24 children become orphan and amongst them 18 children lost both parents.

This was a very hurting and disturbing moment for us when we found that the Peshawar Diocese was not willing to help their own inflicted Church members.

The Local Church members stated that “Bishop and their priests were busy only in the funerals of their loved ones whereas rest of the funerals were conducted by Roman Catholic and Salvation Army Pastors without considering that the dead belonged to the Church of Pakistan”

This is strange that still Bishop or its Priests were unable to pay a condolence visit to their church members, Whereas Bishop Humphrey went to Europe for Fund raising.

According to our Sources right after the blast in Church, International Churches and NGOs were in action and emergency aid of £2,000 were sent to the Peshawar Church by “Diocese of Wakefield” http://www.wakefield.anglican.org/news/story/help_and_prayer_for_devastated_people_of_peshawar

This money was sent for the medical treatment of those victims who lost their feet, ankles arms and legs or for those who are in serious need of medical attention. But it was never used on these victims.

Similarly like that “Titus Presler” https://www.facebook.com/titus.presler who has been appointed as an Principle of Edwardes College Peshawar is running a campaign for Funds. https://titusonmission.wordpress.com/2013/09/30/peshawar-all-saints-update-bomb-casualty-toll-funds-appeal-other-bombings/

And so far through this campaign much funds has been collected, one of the example is Episcopal Relief and Development who sent $15,000 grant. According to this web blog “…. Other initiatives are being developed in the Episcopal Church and may be announced soon. Meanwhile, the Edwardes College Compassion Appeal has already begun receiving donations for victims and their families from concerned people in the USA as well as in Pakistan….” Our question is where this money use? Church did not help any of the victims of the blast in their medical treatment then why they are keep collecting money?

Like them Australian Anglican Aid has also contributed their part by sending 5000 AUD to Bishop Humphrey Peter after their meeting on 27th Sept at 7:30 P.M in St. Saviour’s Church Punchbowl. Kindly go through the link http://anglicanaid.org.au/project/emergency-all-saint-church-pakistan-appeal

This was really a hurting situation that even receiving the love gifts from international churches Humphrey and his associates were unable to provide the medical assistance to these vulnerable victims.

A part from us [World vision in Progress] another NGO was helping the victims in their medical treatment, whereas Church even after receiving the funds from the international Community stand by idly as they die. Even the church was failed to provide the medical treatment to their own worker Mr. Robin Bhatti “ it was mid night when he called us for help ,we were on the way back to our base. We promise him that we will help him in his medical treatment but during his operation on 4th Oct, 2013 he passed away” The question arises here when diocese was unable to help his own staff how they can will help these poor members of the Church.

This is small information which we had shared with you, but soon we are going to uncover the details of the funds which church received on the names of these victims.

We would request the international world please do not sent the money to these people , if you like to support these victims we will soon upload the list of the victims with their complete addresses and Telephone numbers so you can contact them directly .

Salvance Jacob Advocate


Mrs. Sonia A.

WVIP- Peshawar Project In-charges


Evolution is Revolution in Congress These Days

By: Terresa Monroe-Hamilton
Cross-Posted at Right Wing News

So goes the back and forth on the debt ceiling deadline. It’s boring faux theater. In the end, the Progressive Republicans will give the Progressive Democrats everything they want and will get nothing in return — just as they planned it. This is all for show, nothing for action.

It’s the same thing every time — utterly predictable. The players will all wait till the very last minute to save us from ourselves. Obama will look strong and tough (or so he thinks) and the Republicans will act as if they did everything they could (when in reality, they did squat). You people suck.

Drama, drama and more stupid drama:

A campaign to persuade House Republicans to lift the federal debt limit collapsed in humiliating failure Tuesday, leaving Washington careering toward a critical deadline just two days away, with no clear plan for avoiding a government default.

Senate leaders quickly moved to pick up the pieces, saying they were “optimistic” that they could reach agreement to advance an alternative proposal that would raise the debt limit through Feb. 7 and end a government shutdown, now in its third week.

But it was unclear whether a deal struck by Senate Majority Leader Harry M. Reid (D-Nev.) and Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) could pass the Senate before the Treasury Department exhausts its borrowing power Thursday.

Meeting that deadline would be impossible if Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Tex.) or other conservative hard-liners chose to throw up roadblocks, Democrats said. Republican leaders were leaning on Cruz and his allies to avoid unnecessary delays.

“The clock is ticking,” said Sen. John Thune (R-S.D.), the No. 3 Republican in the Senate. “Given the consequence of what we’re talking about here, . . . I would hope that we would have genuine interest among all parties in terms of trying to get this done as quickly as possible.”

Any deal would also have to win approval in the House, where Speaker John A. Boehner (R-Ohio) and his leadership team had once again lost all control of their majority. After a long day of trying with increasing desperation to cobble together a debt-limit plan that could win the support of 217 Republicans, Boehner and his top deputies gave up and abruptly canceled a scheduled vote on the measure.

On Tuesday evening, they left the Capitol without further plan or explanation.

“We are done for the night,” a weary Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) said as he left a marathon session in Boehner’s office that began as an airing of complaints from rebellious conservatives and soon ballooned into a full-blown emergency session of senior lawmakers and committee chairmen.

And on cue, they blame it on Cruz who is trying desperately to do the right and sane thing. What a bunch of jackwagons on both sides of the aisle. Constitutionally, we can’t go into default. Even if we breach the deadline, the US has funds for a couple of weeks before running out of those funds. We bring in way more than enough to pay the interest on our debts by the way, which is the crux of the default issue. However, if Obama decides to default… well, that is another impeachable story. But, I don’t expect it to go that far. Nope — the Whigs will cave and the death of the old Republican guard will be complete. Long live the Tea Party and a new, invigorated movement is born. A third party borne within the GOP and getting ready to clean house of the Progressive cancer that has long metastasized in the Party of Lincoln.

Meanwhile, the Dems are screaming: Armageddon is upon us – a bunch of Marxist chicken littles who only know how to pontificate and lie their asses off. The Party of Evil. But the Republicans aren’t far behind – call them the Mini-Me of Evil. Witness asshat royale John McCain saying ‘I told you so:’

“It’s very, very serious,” warned Senator John McCain, Republican of Arizona. “Republicans have to understand we have lost this battle, as I predicted weeks ago, that we would not be able to win because we were demanding something that was not achievable.”

Will somebody please retire him to the politico pasture already? I waver between death by boredom and death by stroke with these weasels. But never fear the surrender monkeys are here:

Overall, though, the deal marks a major concession for Republicans, given that the initial fight over the shutdown was started due to demands from conservatives that any government funding bill also gut Obamacare. Under the emerging agreement, Obamacare would escape largely unscathed.

Top Republicans said Tuesday it was time to end what had emerged as a politically disastrous episode for their party.

“The only reason why the Democrats don’t look terrible is we look even worse,” said Sen. Roy Blunt (R-Mo.), a member of Senate GOP leadership.

Reid and McConnell were already close to finalizing an agreement before the leaders were forced to enter a holding pattern while House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) tried to get House Republicans to pass their own plan to raise the debt ceiling and reopen the government. That plan had additional Obamacare concessions and would prohibit Treasury from using the “extraordinary” authority to extend the debt ceiling deadline.

But it failed due to a conservative revolt and opposition from Democrats, marking a major embarrassment for Boehner and forcing the two Senate leaders to restart talks with the Thursday debt ceiling deadline approaching rapidly.

More than ever time is working against Reid and McConnell after the two longtime Senate rivals lost a day of negotiations and Senate floor time thanks to the House’s fruitless effort to devise a bill that could attract the support of the House Republican majority.

“Given tonight’s events, the leaders have decided to work toward a solution that would reopen the government and prevent default. They are optimistic an agreement can be reached,” said Don Stewart, a spokesman for McConnell.

Constitutionally, the Treasury cannot extend the debt ceiling. Just as Constitutionally, Obama cannot side step it. But that won’t stop them if they think it serves their agenda. Over and over, they blame it all on Cruz, Lee and the Tea Party:

Quick passage in the Senate is far from assured, particularly a deal well-short of the demands to gut Obamacare sought by conservatives like Sens. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) and Mike Lee (R-Utah). The two senators who led the movement to defund Obamacare as part of a government spending bill did not attend a Republican Conference policy lunch Tuesday and have refused to divulge their plans.

Well, at least a few left have a spine and they will emerge as the new leaders of this country when this is all done and history. To paraphrase an old communist saying, evolution is revolution in the Congress these days. The Tea Party is rising and nothing they do will stop it.


Regaining The Right To Walk The Streets of London: Woolwich Arrest – Bürgerbewegung Pax Europa OSCE Statement – Case Dismissed

By: ICLA Admin

A Bürgerbewegung Pax Europa (BPE) Statement Being Made at the OSCE Human Dimension Meeting in Warsaw, September 2013

We have just heard word that the case against Stephen Lennon who was arrested on his charity walk to Woolwich has been dismissed.
The following tweet was made by Tommy Robinson ‏@TRobinsonNewEra:

“CPS have confirmed that the reason my case is dismissed was no evidence? Really ! Why charge me then? Will press question this”

Back in September our friends at Bürgerbewegung Pax Europa (BPE) made a statement at the OSCE meeting in Warsaw in order to highlight this case. It seems that their intervention may have been listened to by the British authorities. The BPE intervention can be found HERE.

This case should never have gone to court and has been a waste of public money.

Was this arrest politically motivated and an abuse of power and a violation of OSCE norms and principles?