Tag Archive for William Blum

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State Department’s Hypocrisies and Lies

President Barack Obama meets with Chief of Staff Denis McDonough and Jen Psaki, Director of Communications, in the Oval Office, April 1, 2015. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

If the U.S. government were not so terrifyingly powerful, its jaw-dropping double standards and the yawning gap between reality and what it calls reality might be funny. But there is the scary recognition that these hypocrisies and lies get people killed, as William Blum describes.

Mysterious Deaths in Ukraine

Nazi symbols on helmets worn by members of Ukraine's Azov battalion. (As filmed by a Norwegian film crew and shown on German TV)

The mainstream U.S. news media is so in the tank for the post-coup Ukrainian government that anything negative – from neo-Nazi militias to apparent “death squad” operations – is ignored, including a string of mysterious deaths of anti-coup politicians, as William Blum noted at Anti-Empire Report.

Killing Democracy in Greece

The Parthenon in Athens, standing atop the Acropolis.

Greece, known as the birthplace of democracy, has seen the popular will thwarted often since World War II, from a brutal rightist coup to today’s austerity-driven depression touched off by financial manipulators, as William Blum describes.

The State Department’s ‘Twilight Zone’

Rod Serling, host of the iconic television series, "The Twilight Zone."

The gap between reality and what the U.S. government says is reality has widened into a chasm with the mainstream U.S. news media usually nodding at whatever absurdity is presented, but the AP’s Matthew Lee is one of the few reporters who challenges the State Department’s “Twilight Zone,” as William Blum notes.

The West’s Help to Islamic Jihadists

In Afghanistan, U.S. Army Pfc. Sean Serritelli provides security outside Combat Outpost Charkh on Aug. 23, 2012. (Photo credit: Spc. Alexandra Campo)

Though Western leaders now lock arms in disgust over Islamic fundamentalism, the West’s actions – from Ronald Reagan to Barack Obama – have often promoted the interests of jihadists from Afghanistan in the 1980s to Iraq in the 2000s to Libya and Syria in the 2010s, as William Blum recalls.

The ‘Exceptionalism’ of US Torture

George W. Bush taking the presidential oath of office on Jan. 20, 2001. (White House photo)

Americans like to think of themselves as the ultimate “good guys” and anyone who gets in their way as a “bad guy.” Under this theory of U.S. “exceptionalism,” whatever “we” do must be moral or at least morally defensible, from sponsoring coups around the world to torture, as William Blum describes.

The Two Sides of the Berlin Wall

A portion of the Berlin Wall as photographed in 1975, toward the east. (Photo credit: Edward Valachovic)

Historical narratives are often boiled down to simplistic and self-serving storylines that influence how people see the world, when a more sophisticated and fair-minded account would offer a different perspective, as William Blum writes about the Berlin Wall.

Hiding Ukraine’s Neo-Nazi Reality

Far-right militia members demonstrating outside Ukrainian parliament in Kiev. (Screen shot from RT video via YouTube video)

Perhaps the biggest taboo of the U.S. mainstream coverage of the Ukraine crisis is to block out the role played by neo-Nazi militias in both the Feb. 22 coup and this summer’s bloody offensive in eastern Ukraine, but the ugly reality occasionally breaks through, as William Blum noted in Anti-Empire Report.

Still Tolerating Torture

CIA Director John Brennan addresses officials at the Agency's headquarters in Langley, Virginia. (Photo credit: CIA)

President Obama admits that U.S. authorities engaged in torture during the “war on terror” but he has taken no action to hold the torturers accountable and even elevated one of its defenders, John Brennan, to chief of the CIA, notes William Blum.

Human Blowback from US Interventions

Former Honduran President Manuel Zelaya.

The flight of Central American children north to the U.S. border is another form of blowback from decades of U.S. refusal to permit reformist governments in the region, including the State Department’s support for a 2009 coup ousting Honduran President Zelaya, writes William Blum at Anti-Empire Report.