The money should stagger you. Journalist James Risen, author of Pay Any Price: Greed, Power, and Endless War, a revelatory new book about the scammers, counterterrorism grifters, careerist bureaucrats, torture con artists, and on-the-make privatizers of our post-9/11 national security state, suggests that the best figure for money spent on Washington’s war on terror, including the Iraq and Afghan wars, is four trillion dollars.
|By: DSWright Monday November 24, 2014 7:03 am|
Last May President Barack Obama announced that US forces in Afghanistan would finally be ending their combat mission and in 2015 would move to an advisory role. According to The New York Times that pledge has now been reversed with an order to continue combat missions against the Taliban and anyone else who threatens US forces in the country or the Afghan government. Rather than pull back from Afghanistan as President Obama promised, the US is doubling down.
|By: Tim Shorrock Saturday November 22, 2014 1:59 pm|
From his opening story about the vast shipments of cash to Iraq in the early days of the U.S. invasion to his final chapter on the U.S. government’s attacks on Diane Rourk and the four NSA whistleblowers, James Risen paints a brilliant but tragic portrait of a country gone mad with power and greed during the 12 years of the Bush-Obama “war on terror.”
His stories are culled from many years of deep reporting, including his explosive revelations in 2005 of the NSA’s warrantless surveillance program. They provide startling new evidence of how the post-9/11 atmosphere of fear and government intimidation allowed an entire generation of American officials, intelligence officers, contractors, psychologists and propagandists to defy U.S. and international law and turn the United States into a global ethical pariah.
|By: DSWright Tuesday October 28, 2014 3:00 pm|
Recently two separate acts by lone attackers on government workers have been classified as “lone wolf terrorism” by law enforcement and elected officials. First was the shooting in Canada of a soldier by Michael Zehaf-Bibeau who also entered the Canadian Parliament before being shot and killed. Second was a hatchet attack on NYPD officers by Zale Thompson who was also shot and killed at the scene.
|By: DSWright Tuesday October 28, 2014 12:00 pm|
Yet more unintended consequences from the so-called War on Drugs. According to The New York Times, the IRS has been seizing funds from small businesses and individuals without even presenting a criminal complaint using a draconian law passed to prevent drug money laundering. Under the law the IRS can seize funds that appear to be suspiciously transacted to avoid a $10,000 limit to be flagged and it is incumbent on the person whose funds were seized to prove they are innocent rather than for the government to prove they are guilty.
Many of those who have had their funds taken are small businesses and low wage earners who give up fighting to get back their money despite doing nothing wrong.
|By: DSWright Tuesday October 28, 2014 7:00 am|
A group of Nobel Peace Prize winners have asked their fellow winner President Barack Obama to finally release the report on the CIA’s torture program. Despite efforts by the CIA to sabotage the report by spying on members of Congress and deleting information from their computers, a report has been completed. Now the White House is dragging its feet on getting the report released possibly in hopes of waiting for the GOP to take the Senate and kill the report.
|By: DSWright Tuesday September 23, 2014 3:35 pm|
Remember when the reason for expanding this military campaign from Iraq into Syria was because ISIS was in both countries? It wasn’t so long ago. Well, now President Obama has announced that he also targeted a non-ISIS group in Syria. Mission creep in real time.
|By: cocktailhag Thursday September 11, 2014 8:00 pm|
“Time flies, whether you’re having fun or not.” -Lynda Barry
This thought has been haunting me lately as we approached the 13th anniversary of The Day That Changed Everything (for the worse).
The stark images from the day itself, so overplayed yet ambiguous, seem insignificant now compared to what followed, which is so much more dreadful than anything I could have imagined at the time.
|By: DSWright Tuesday September 9, 2014 6:45 am|
After a continual barrage of media hype surrounding a group of Islamist fighters in Iraq and Syria the American people are scared that the homeland is in jeopardy. According to a CNN/ORC Poll, 45% of Americans see that ISIS is a “very serious threat to the US.” That number parallels what Americans thought of Al Qaeda in 2003. 90% of Americans, according to the poll, believe ISIS is some level of threat to the US. Despite ISIS being a regional group trying to establish an caliphate in the Middle East and zero evidence to back up the claim, 70% of Americans also think ISIS has agents in the US ready to strike.
|By: DSWright Monday August 25, 2014 7:50 am|
Obama signaled he would review the programs at a White House news conference on Monday when he said he wanted to make sure police were purchasing equipment they actually needed because there is “a big difference between our military and our local law enforcement and we don’t want those lines blurred.”