Media

A Leak Case Based on Fear and Guesses

Courtroom sketch of former CIA officer Jeffrey Sterling by Debra Van Poolen (http://www.debvanpoolen.com/)

The U.S. government based its leak case against ex-CIA officer Jeffrey Sterling on little more than circumstantial evidence – that he had spoken to reporter James Risen though it was unclear about what – and lots of fear-mongering about Iran and nukes, writes John Hanrahan.

CIA Found No Magic in Operation Merlin

Former CIA officer Jeffrey Sterling.

The espionage trial of former CIA officer Jeffrey Sterling has focused less on evidence that he leaked secrets about “Operation Merlin,” a CIA scheme to slip flawed nuclear designs to Iran, than on the merits of the unsuccessful covert op which never got a response from the Iranians, reports Gareth Porter.

CIA Wants Its Reputation Back

CIA seal in lobby of the spy agency's headquarters. (U.S. government photo)

The CIA doesn’t like to be portrayed as the gang that couldn’t shoot straight, so it has been using the leak trial of ex-CIA officer Jeffrey Sterling to insist that it really can shoot straight and indeed is brilliantly protecting America’s national security, writes Norman Solomon.

The CIA’s Prosecutorial Defense

Jose Rodriguez, former director of operations for the Central Intelligence Agency.

In the trial of alleged CIA whistleblower Jeffrey Sterling, the U.S. government appears more intent on burnishing the CIA’s tarnished reputation than proving Sterling’s guilt. The defendant almost looks to be collateral damage in this PR process, as Norman Solomon observes.

How Propaganda Conquers Democracy

President Barack Obama delivers a statement on the situation in Ukraine, on the South Lawn of the White House, July 29, 2014. (Official White House Photo by Lawrence Jackson)

In recent decades, the U.S. propaganda system has grown more and more sophisticated in the art of “perception management,” now enlisting not only government PR specialists but careerist journalists and aspiring bloggers to push deceptions on the public, a crisis in democracy that Nicolas J S Davies explores.

Hypocrisy on Parade in Paris

Singer James Taylor performs "You've Got a Friend" onstage in Paris on Jan. 16, 2015, during a tribute to the victims of the Charlie Hebdo massacre. On the left is Secretary of State John Kerry. (U.S. State Department photo)

At the Paris procession honoring the victims of the Charlie Hebdo massacre, world leaders locked arms in defense of free speech – although many of the participants including the French have been busy cracking down on freedom of expression, notes Michael Winship.

The Syrian Ambassador’s Complaint

Bashar al-Ja'afari, Syria's Ambassador to the United Nations.

The Western news media calls itself “objective,” but many foreign crises are reported in a biased way, fawning over one side and hammering the other. To provide a sense of the “other side” in the Syrian civil war, we are reposting an interview with Syria’s UN ambassador by Eva Bartlett for a Lebanese newspaper.

Neocons: The ‘Anti-Realists’

Prominent neocon intellectual Robert Kagan. (Photo credit: Mariusz Kubik, http://www.mariuszkubik.pl)

Special Report: America’s neocons, who wield great power inside the U.S. government and media, endanger the planet by concocting strategies inside their heads that ignore real-world consequences. Thus, their “regime changes” have unleashed ancient hatreds and spread chaos across the globe, as Robert Parry explains.

France’s Wavy Line on ‘Free Speech’

Stephane Charboniere, the editor of Charlie Hebdo killed in Jan. 7, 2015 terror attack. (Photo credit: Coyau)

Though called a “satirical” magazine, Charlie Hebdo was really more “scatological,” obsessed with depicting the naked derrieres of political and religious figures often bent over in humiliating postures, especially Prophet Mohammed, a willful provocation that reflected more bigotry than free speech, notes Lawrence Davidson.

How CIA Got NYT to Kill Iran-Nuke Story

Ex-Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice

When reporter James Risen called CIA to ask about a covert scheme to slip flawed nuclear blueprints to Iran, the Bush administration brought out some big guns to get the New York Times to rein in Risen, showing how cozy those relationships can be, writes Norman Solomon.