Excerpts of Key Media Articles from Major Media
Below are many highly revealing excerpts of key media articles from the major media that suggest major cover-ups.
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Mindfulness in Politics
The movement for “mindfulness meditation” is growing, but can it break the modern political gridlock? Congressman Tim Ryan [wants] everyone to develop greater “mindfulness”, through simple forms of meditation and other practices that focus our attention and help us listen to each other. Elected to the House of Representatives at the tender age of 29, the Democrat from Ohio spoke out repeatedly against the policies of President George W. Bush on Iraq, the economy and other issues. But then so did many others. What makes Ryan stand out is his conviction that the USA can be transformed – not just “tinkered with”, as he puts it in A Mindful Nation, the book he published in 2012. Practicing mindfulness may not get everyone on the same page in detailed policy terms, he believes, but it could help to find more common ground between different views and break the political gridlock. In this sense the personal is always political. There’s an upbeat tone in Ryan’s approach that seems out of place with the realities of Washington DC: “Strip away the materialism, the marketing, the media and the technology and our fundamental nature is revealed,” he writes, “joyous, generous and courageous.” Still, given that US politics is soaked through with cynicism, “gotcha” tactics and manipulation, even admitting that you meditate, let alone publicly recommending it to others, is a courageous thing to do. And who knows, the “quiet revolution” of mindfulness might even work.
Note: For a treasure trove of great news articles which will inspire you to make a difference, click here.
Programmed to act
2013-09-06, San Francisco Chronicle (SF's leading newspaper)
Over decades and diverse administrations, justifications for the use of force - limited and full scale - have constantly revolved around weapons of mass destruction. Protection against them, real and imaginary, has served [as] justification for government excess and a curtailment of our freedoms. We stop everything because it is WMD and we fret about the consequences of both action and inaction because it is WMD. We do so because of a little known and little understood entity that truly drives American national security practices: It's called the Program. Founded in the darkest days of nuclear threat during the Eisenhower administration, the Program began as a limited system given responsibility for survival of the government. The nuclear arms race ended, but the Program never completely went away. And since 9/11, like everything else about national security, its mission and focus have expanded. The Program exists through a system of sealed envelopes - four dozen formal Presidential Emergency Action Documents more secret than anything that has been revealed about the National Security Agency of late, arrangements that instruct a surviving entity of what to do if a nation-destroying calamity befalls Washington or the United States. Because Doomsday is now thought by the experts in government to be any day, and because the potential battlefield is anyplace and every place, the work of the Program, and its power, have dramatically expanded. A survival apparatus operates behind the scenes as if survival is perpetually and instantly at stake.
Note: The author of this analysis, William M. Arkin, has written American Coup: How a Terrified Government is Destroying the Constitution, and is co-author of the best-selling book and newspaper series Top Secret America: The Rise of the New American Security State.
Revealed: how US and UK spy agencies defeat internet privacy and security
2013-09-05, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
US and British intelligence agencies have successfully cracked much of the online encryption relied upon by hundreds of millions of people to protect the privacy of their personal data, online transactions and emails, according to top-secret documents revealed by former contractor Edward Snowden. The files show that the National Security Agency and its UK counterpart GCHQ have broadly compromised the guarantees that internet companies have given consumers to reassure them that their communications, online banking and medical records would be indecipherable to criminals or governments. The agencies, the documents reveal, have adopted a battery of methods in their systematic and ongoing assault on what they see as one of the biggest threats to their ability to access huge swathes of internet traffic – "the use of ubiquitous encryption across the internet". Those methods include covert measures to ensure NSA control over setting of international encryption standards, the use of supercomputers to break encryption with "brute force", and – the most closely guarded secret of all – collaboration with technology companies and internet service providers themselves. Through these covert partnerships, the agencies have inserted secret vulnerabilities – known as backdoors or trapdoors – into commercial encryption software. "Backdoors are fundamentally in conflict with good security," said Christopher Soghoian, principal technologist and senior policy analyst at the American Civil Liberties Union. "Backdoors expose all users of a backdoored system, not just intelligence agency targets, to heightened risk of data compromise."
Note: For an excellent article in the New York Times on this, click here. For a guide from the Guardian on "How to remain secure against NSA surveillance", click here.
A war the Pentagon doesn’t want
2013-09-05, Washington Post
Written by Robert H. Scales, a retired Army general and former commandant of the U.S. Army War College. The tapes tell the tale. Go back and look at images of our nation’s most senior soldier, Gen. Martin Dempsey, and his body language during [the] Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearings on Syria. It’s pretty obvious that Dempsey, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, doesn’t want this war. Dempsey’s unspoken words reflect the opinions of most serving military leaders. They are embarrassed to be associated with the amateurism of the Obama administration’s attempts to craft a plan that makes strategic sense. None of the White House staff has any experience in war or understands it. So far, at least, this path to war violates every principle of war, including the element of surprise, achieving mass and having a clearly defined and obtainable objective.
Prospective U.S. action in Syria is not about threats to American security. They are outraged by the fact that what may happen is an act of war and a willingness to risk American lives to make up for a slip of the tongue about “red lines.” These acts would be for retribution and to restore the reputation of a president. Our serving professionals make the point that killing more Syrians won’t deter Iranian resolve to confront us. The Iranians have already gotten the message. Our people lament our loneliness. Our senior soldiers take pride in their past commitments to fight alongside allies and within coalitions that shared our strategic goals. This war, however, will be ours alone.
Note: For a two-minute video of four-star general Wesley Clark declaring that Syria was in the crosshairs of the US as early as 2001, click here. For more on why the U.S.'s proposed war of aggression against Syria must be stopped, see the deeply revealing reports from reliable major media sources available here.
FSA 'endangering public health' by ignoring concerns over GM food
2013-09-05, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
The French researcher who caused a scientific storm when he claimed to show that some GM food led to tumours and cancers in rats has accused the UK Food Standards Agency (FSA) of "recklessly endangering public health" by not demanding long-term testing of the foods. In a series of parliamentary and public meetings held this week in London, Edinburgh and Cardiff, Prof Gilles-Eric Séralini has challenged UK politicians and safety authorities to review the way safety is assessed. Séralini, a molecular biologist at Caen University, said: "Our research found severe toxicity from GM maize and [Monsanto pesticide] Roundup. The British Food Standards Agency has uncritically accepted the European Food Safety Authority's dismissal of the study, even though many of EFSA's experts have been exposed as having conflicts of interest with the GM industry. At the very least, the British government should demand long-term mandatory safety testing on all GM foods before they are released onto the market," he said. "The British scientific authorities are deliberately misleading their government and are recklessly endangering public health in ignoring the findings of our research." Séralini's study found that rats developed much higher levels of cancers and died earlier than controls when fed a diet of Monsanto's Roundup-tolerant GM maize NK603 for two years, or were exposed to Roundup over the same period. The usual industry tests last for 90 days.
Note: For more on the risks from GMO foods, see the highly informative summary available here.
What happened to the antiwar movement?
2013-09-05, San Francisco Chronicle (SF's leading newspaper)
A mere 72 hours after President Obama delivered an encomium honoring the life of the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., he announced his intention to pound yet another country with bombs. The oxymoron last week was noteworthy for how little attention it received. Yes, a president memorialized an antiwar activist who derided the U.S. government as "the greatest purveyor of violence in the world." Then that same president quickly proposed yet more violence - this time in Syria. Almost nobody mentioned the contradiction. Even worse, as Congress now debates whether to launch yet another military campaign in the Middle East, the antiwar movement that King represented - and that so vigorously opposed the last war - is largely silent. So what happened to that movement? The shorter answer is: It was a victim of partisanship. That's the conclusion that emerges from a recent study by professors at the University of Michigan and Indiana University. Evaluating surveys of more than 5,300 antiwar protesters from 2007 to 2009, the researchers discovered that the many protesters who self-identified as Democrats "withdrew from antiwar protests when the Democratic Party achieved electoral success" in the 2008 presidential election. The withdrawal occurred even as Obama was escalating the war in Afghanistan and intensifying drone wars in places like Pakistan and Yemen. The researchers thus conclude that during the Bush years, many Democrats were not necessarily motivated to participate in the antiwar movement because they oppose militarism and war - they were instead "motivated to participate by anti-Republican sentiments."
Note: For more on why the proposed war of aggression against Syria must be stopped, see the deeply revealing reports from reliable major media sources available here.
Greg Palast: Potential Fed Chair Summers at Heart of Global Economic Crisis
Investigative journalist Greg Palast has obtained a secret memo authored by then deputy Treasury secretary Larry Summers and his protégé Timothy Geithner detailing their plans to roll back financial regulation. In the piece, titled "The Confidential Memo at the Heart of the Global Financial Crisis", [Palast] writes:
"The Memo confirmed every conspiracy freak's fantasy: that in the late 1990s, the top U.S. Treasury officials secretly conspired with a small cabal of banker big-shots to rip apart financial regulation across the planet. When you see 26.3 percent unemployment in Spain, desperation and hunger in Greece, riots in Indonesia and Detroit in bankruptcy, go back to this End Game memo, the genesis of the blood and tears." [Palast:] This is really important right now because Larry Summers is President Obama's top choice to become head of a Federal Reserve Board. He would take Ben Bernanke's place. And what this memo is--they call it the "end game memo". Geithner calls it the "end game". And what's the game being played? The memo asks Summers to get back to the five biggest, most powerful bankers in the United States to act on and determine what our policy should be for world governance of the banking system. Basically, there were secret calls going between Larry Summers and the head of Bank of America, the head of Goldman Sachs, the head of Citibank and Merrill, the five big boys, to find out what should happen to the world financial policing order. And the answer was: smash it. Summers was holding secret meetings with the big bankers to come up with a scheme to eliminate financial regulation across the planet.
Note: Greg Palast is a New York Times-bestselling author and a freelance journalist for the British Broadcasting Corporation as well as the British newspaper The Observer. He is one of the few journalists uncovering the deepest layers of secrecy in our world. For a key past report of his on elections corruption, click here.
Remaking the basic bargain
2013-09-03, Chicago Tribune
Back in 1914, Henry Ford announced he was paying workers on his Model T assembly line $5 a day -- three times what the typical factory employee earned at the time. The Wall Street Journal termed his action "an economic crime." But Ford knew it was a cunning business move. The higher wage turned Ford's auto workers into customers who could afford to buy Model Ts. In two years, Ford's profits more than doubled. Yet in the years leading up to the Great Crash of 1929 [the] wages of most American workers stagnated even as the economy surged. Gains went mainly into corporate profits and into the pockets of the very rich. American families maintained their standard of living by going deeper into debt, and the rich gambled with their gigantic winnings. In 1929, the debt bubble popped. The same thing happened in the years leading up to the crash of 2008. The lesson should be obvious. When the economy becomes too lopsided -- disproportionately benefiting corporate owners and top executives rather than average workers -- it tips over. It's still lopsided. We're slowly emerging from the depths of the worst downturn since the Great Depression, but nothing fundamentally has changed. Corporate profits are up largely because payrolls are down. Even Ford Motor Company is now paying its new hires half what it paid new employees a few years ago. All over the American economy, employee pay is now down to the smallest share of the economy since the government began collecting wage and salary data 60 years ago. And corporate profits constitute the largest share of the economy since then.
Note: The author of this analysis, Robert Reich, is former U.S. Secretary of Labor, a professor of public policy at the University of California at Berkeley, and the author of Aftershock: The Next Economy and America's Future. He blogs at http://www.robertreich.org. For more on income inequality, see the deeply revealing reports from reliable major media sources available here.
The hidden truth about exercise
2013-09-02, Sydney Morning Herald/New York Times
We all know exercise promotes health, reducing most people’s risk of developing diabetes and becoming obese. Now light has been shed on how it does this at a cellular level. It seems exercise may be able to drastically alter how genes operate, studies show. Genes are not static. They turn on or off depending on the biochemical signals they receive from elsewhere in the body. One powerful means of affecting gene activity involves a process called methylation, in which methyl groups, a cluster of carbon and hydrogen atoms, attach to the outside of a gene and make it easier or harder for that gene to receive and respond to messages from the body. What is particularly fascinating about the methylation process is that it seems to be driven largely by lifestyle. Diet, for instance, notably affects the methylation of genes. But the role of physical activity in this has been poorly understood. Researchers ... began by recruiting dozens of sedentary but generally healthy adult men. Using new molecular techniques, researchers mapped the methylation patterns on the DNA within [their] cells. Then, under the guidance of a trainer, the volunteers began attending hour-long spin or aerobics classes about twice a week for six months. By the end of that time, the men had ... altered the methylation pattern of many of the genes in their fat cells. More than 17,900 individual sites on 7663 separate genes in the fat cells now displayed changed methylation patterns. Other studies have found that exercise has an equally profound effect on DNA methylation within human muscle cells.
Note: For more on health issues, see the deeply revealing reports from reliable major media sources available here.
Income Gap Grows Wider (and Faster)
2013-09-01, New York Times
Income inequality in the United States has been growing for decades, but the trend appears to have accelerated during the Obama administration. One measure of this is the relationship between median and average wages. The median wage is straightforward: it’s the midpoint of everyone’s wages. Interpreting the average, though, can be tricky. If the income of a handful of people soars while everyone else’s remains the same, the entire group’s average may still rise substantially. So when average wages grow faster than the median, as happened from 2009 through 2011, it means that lower earners are falling further behind those at the top. One way to see the acceleration in inequality is to look at the ratio of average to median annual wages. From 2001 through 2008, during the George W. Bush administration, that ratio grew at 0.28 percentage point per year. From 2009 through 2011, the latest year for which the data is available, the ratio increased 1.14 percentage points annually, or roughly four times faster. The reasons for the widening income gap aren’t entirely clear. Yes, the nation has had a big recession, but recessions typically tend to lessen inequality rather than increase it.
Note: For more on income inequality, see the deeply revealing reports from reliable major media sources available here.
Navy Training, Testing May Kill Whales, Dolphins
2013-08-30, ABC News/Associated Press
Navy training and testing could inadvertently kill hundreds of whales and dolphins and injure thousands over the next five years, mostly as a result of detonating explosives underwater, according to two environmental impact statements released by the military [on August 30]. The Navy said that the studies focused on waters off the East Coast, the Gulf of Mexico, Southern California and Hawaii from 2014 through 2019, the main areas that the service branch tests equipment and trains sailors. Most of the deaths would come from explosives, though some might come from testing sonar or animals being hit by ships. According to the reports, computer models show it may kill 186 whales and dolphins off the East Coast and 155 off Hawaii and Southern California. But Michael Jasny, senior policy analyst at the Natural Resources Defense Council, said the Navy was underestimating the effect its activities on marine mammals. For example, he pointed to a study by government and private sector scientists published just last month in the journal Proceedings of the Royal Society showing mid-frequency active sonar can disrupt blue whale feeding. The study says feeding disruptions and the movement of whales away from their prey could significantly affect the health of individual whales and the overall health of baleen whale populations. Jasny said the Navy's ocean activities are "simply not sustainable." "These smaller disruptions short of death are themselves accumulating into something like death for species and death for populations," Jasny said.
Note: For more on the impacts of Navy operations on marine mammals, see the deeply revealing reports from reliable major media sources available here.
U.S. spy network’s successes, failures and objectives detailed in ‘black budget’ summary
2013-08-29, Washington Post
U.S. spy agencies have built an intelligence-gathering colossus since the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, but remain unable to provide critical information to the president on a range of national security threats, according to the government’s top-secret budget. The $52.6 billion “black budget” for fiscal 2013, obtained by The Washington Post from former intelligence contractor Edward Snowden, maps a bureaucratic and operational landscape that has never been subject to public scrutiny. Although the government has annually released its overall level of intelligence spending since 2007, it has not divulged how it uses the money or how it performs against the goals set by the president and Congress. The 178-page budget summary for the National Intelligence Program details the successes, failures and objectives of the 16 spy agencies that make up the U.S. intelligence community, which has 107,035 employees. Among the notable revelations in the budget summary: Spending by the CIA has surged past that of every other spy agency, with $14.7 billion in requested funding for 2013. The figure vastly exceeds outside estimates and is nearly 50 percent above that of the National Security Agency, which conducts eavesdropping operations and has long been considered the behemoth of the community. The CIA and the NSA have begun aggressive new efforts to hack into foreign computer networks to steal information or sabotage enemy systems, embracing what the budget refers to as “offensive cyber operations.”
Note: For more on the realities of intelligence operations, see the deeply revealing reports from reliable major media sources available here.
A Safe Place for Bees: Will US Follow Europe in Banning Hive-Killing Pesticides?
2013-08-29, Common Dreams/Yes! Magazine
Worldwide bee population decline has motivated recent action by governments and activists. On April 29, the European Union announced a two-year suspension of three neonicotinoid insecticides, or "neonics," that pose "high acute risk" to bees. The ban was demanded in a large campaign by Greenpeace, Friends of the Earth, and other environmental groups, along with more than 2.5 million people who signed a petition in support. On July 16, the EU added fipronil, another pesticide linked to bee kills, to the list of restricted chemicals. The province of Ontario has recently banned some pesticides. Oregon temporarily banned dinotefuran, a neonic, after 50,000 bumblebees died when ornamental trees were sprayed with the chemical. And corporate accountability group SumOfUs is raising funds to send beekeepers to a conference for garden-store owners. They'll ask the store owners not to stock pesticides that kill bees. Other bee protectors are using the legal system. Four beekeepers, along with the Center for Food Safety, Beyond Pesticides, Pesticide Action Network, the Sierra Club, and the Center for Environmental Health, filed a lawsuit on March 21. They're charging the EPA with failing to protect honeybees from clothianidin and thiamethoxam, two of the neonics included in the EU ban. "America's beekeepers cannot survive for long with the toxic environment EPA has supported," said Steve Ellis, one of the beekeepers bringing the lawsuit. "It's time for the EPA to recognize the value of bees to our food system and agricultural economy."
Note: For more on mass deaths of bees and other animals, see the deeply revealing reports from reliable major media sources available here.
NYPD's massive mosque spying operations revealed
2013-08-28, MSN/Associated Press
The New York Police Department has secretly labeled entire mosques as terrorism organizations, a designation that allows police to use informants to record sermons and spy on imams, often without specific evidence of criminal wrongdoing. Designating an entire mosque as a terrorism enterprise means that anyone who attends prayer services there is a potential subject of an investigation and fair game for surveillance. Since the 9/11 attacks, the NYPD has opened at least a dozen "terrorism enterprise investigations" into mosques, according to interviews and confidential police documents. Many TEIs stretch for years, allowing surveillance to continue even though the NYPD has never criminally charged a mosque or Islamic organization with operating as a terrorism enterprise. The documents show in detail how, in its hunt for terrorists, the NYPD investigated countless innocent New York Muslims and put information about them in secret police files. As a tactic, opening an enterprise investigation on a mosque is so potentially invasive that while the NYPD conducted at least a dozen, the FBI never did one, according to interviews with federal law enforcement officials. The revelations about the NYPD's massive spying operations are in documents recently obtained by The Associated Press and part of a new book, Enemies Within: Inside the NYPD's Secret Spying Unit... The book ... is based on hundreds of previously unpublished police files and interviews with current and former NYPD, CIA and FBI officials.
Note: For more on the realities of intelligence operations, see the deeply revealing reports from reliable major media sources available here.
Physician Who Told of Handling Roswell Debris Dies
2013-08-28, ABC News/Associated Press
Dr. Jesse Marcel Jr., who said he handled debris from the 1947 crash of an unidentified flying object near Roswell, N.M., has died at the age of 76. Over the past 35 years, Marcel appeared on TV shows, documentaries and radio shows; was interviewed for magazine articles and books, and traveled the world lecturing about his experiences in Roswell. "He was credible. He wasn't lying. He never embellished — only told what he saw," his wife Linda said. Marcel's father was an Air Force intelligence officer and reportedly the first military officer to investigate the wreckage in early July 1947. Marcel said he was 10 when his father brought home some of the debris, woke him up in the middle of the night and said the boy needed to look at it because it was something he would never see again. His father maintained the debris "was not of this Earth," Linda Marcel said. After an initial report that a flying saucer had been recovered on a ranch near Roswell, the military issued a statement saying the debris was from a weather balloon. "They were told to keep it quiet and they did for years and years and years," Linda Marcel said. Interest in the case was revived, however, when physicist and UFO researcher Stanton Friedman spoke with Jesse Marcel Sr. in the late 1970s. Friedman wrote the foreword to Marcel Jr.'s 2007 book The Roswell Legacy, and described him as a courageous man who "set a standard for honesty and decency and telling the truth. His legacy is that he had the courage to speak out when he didn't have to about handling wreckage that his Dad brought home," Friedman said Tuesday. "He could have kept his mouth shut. A lot of people did."
Note: For more reliable, verifiable information on the UFO cover-up, see our deeply revealing UFO Information Center.
'Seed freedom is the answer to hunger and malnutrition'
2013-08-28, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
What happens to the seed affects the web of life. When seed is living, regenerative and diverse, it feeds pollinators, soil organisms and animals - including humans. When seed is non-renewable, bred for chemicals, or genetically engineered with toxic Bt or Roundup Ready genes, diversity disappears. In recent years, beekeepers have been losing 25% of their hives each winter. According to a scientific study in 2008, bees and pollinators contribute more than €153bn annually to agriculture. Chemically-farmed soils, sprayed with herbicides and pesticides kill the beneficial organisms that create soil fertility and protect plants. Organic seeds and organic farming do not just protect human health; they protect the health and wellbeing of all. With industrial seeds and industrial agriculture, the diversity of plants and crops disappears. India had 200,000 rice varieties before the "green revolution" in the 1970s, which relied on pesticides and fertilisers to avert famine in India. This diversity was replaced by monocultures.
Today the fastest expanse in acreage is of genetically engineered corn and soya, because they are patented and corporations can collect royalties from farmers. When seed freedom disappears and farmers become dependent on GMO seeds, they in effect become seed slaves. According to the National Bureau of Crime Records, more than 284,000 Indian farmers have committed suicide since seed monopolies were established in India. Gandhi spun cotton for our freedom. Today GMO Bt cotton has enslaved [these] farmers in debt, and pushed them to suicide. And 95% cotton seed is controlled by one company: Monsanto.
Note: Author Vandana Shiva is a biodiversity campaigner and founder of Navdanya, which campaigns for biodiversity and against corporate control of food and seeds. For more on the environmental and health impacts of GMO crops, see the deeply revealing reports from reliable major media sources available here.
Fifty years after March on Washington, economic gap between blacks, whites persists
2013-08-27, Washington Post
Even as racial barriers have tumbled and the nation has grown wealthier and better educated, the economic disparities separating blacks and whites remain as wide as they were when marchers assembled on the Mall in 1963. When it comes to household income and wealth, the gaps between blacks and whites have widened. On other measures, the gaps are roughly the same as they were four decades ago. The poverty rate for blacks, for instance, continues to be about three times that of whites. The march took place at a time when the benefits of American economic growth were widely shared. Between 1947 and 1979, the wages of workers at all salary levels grew by roughly the same percentage. But between 1979 and 2007, incomes shifted drastically, with the top 5 percent of earners seeing annual salary increases more than three times the size of those in the middle, according to the Economic Policy Institute, a liberal research organization. Overall, 63 percent of total income growth went to the top 10 percent of households between 1979 and 2007.
Note: For more on income and wealth inequality, see the deeply revealing reports from reliable major media sources available here.
Just Because Science Can Genetically Engineer Foods, Doesn't Mean We Should
Recently the debate over genetically modified (GMO) foods has heated up again. Over the weekend New York Times writer Amy Harmon wrote again of the saving graces of genetically engineered foods, this time citing “Golden Rice” as a clear example of the life-saving abilities of GMOs. Yet ... there are other highly effective tools out there to solve hunger and malnutrition besides genetic engineering. Why am I against the creation of Golden Rice, even if it may stop millions of children from going blind? The basic answer is simple: trust. Science has a credibility problem. Today it is not “false fears” that has bred skeptical consumers, it is experience. The most audacious claim made by those who believe genetic engineering is the way to go [is] that genetic engineering is somehow better, and in the long run, cheaper than other more natural ways of eating and that the logistical complexities of getting fruits and veggies to malnourished human beings are too large to overcome. Baloney. The amount of money it has cost to concoct a product like Golden Rice is enormous. Scientists first got initial funding for Golden Rice from the Rockefeller Foundation in 1984 and have now been supported (with monies to cover lab expenses, legal fees, teaching assistants, salaries, long patent processes, etc) for more than 30 years. Meanwhile, again and again, simple low-cost, low-tech solutions like “kitchen gardening,” improved agricultural methods, and cover cropping have been found to give outstanding nutritional and economic results quickly to farmers.
Note: For more on the risks from GMOs, see the deeply revealing reports from reliable major media sources available here.
U.S. spy agency edges into the light after Snowden revelations
There was a time when the U.S. National Security Agency was so secretive that government officials dared not speak its name in public. NSA, the joke went, stood for "No Such Agency." That same agency this month held an on-the-record conference call with reporters, issued a lengthy press release to rebut a newspaper story, and posted documents on a newly launched open website - icontherecord.tumblr.com (which stands for intelligence community on the record). The steps were taken under pressure as President Barack Obama's administration tries to calm a public storm over disclosures by former NSA contractor Edward Snowden. The NSA's moves out of the shadows were meant to show that it operates lawfully..., but not everyone is convinced that it is a fundamental shift toward more openness at the intelligence agencies. Jameel Jaffer, deputy legal director at the American Civil Liberties Union, said the [disclosures] should not be viewed as a huge shift toward transparency by the administration. "In fact, on the same day the president promised more transparency on surveillance issues, the CIA filed a brief in one of our 'targeted killing' cases arguing that it could not release legal memos about the drone program, could not release civilian casualty numbers, and for that matter could not even acknowledge that the agency had played any role in targeted killings," Jaffer said.
Note: For more on the realities of intelligence operations, see the deeply revealing reports from reliable major media sources available here.
FBI director does not deny al-Awlaki may have been government asset
2013-08-23, Fox News
Newly declassified documents obtained [by] Judicial Watch, are raising questions over the U.S. government's handling of Anwar al-Awlaki, and whether it [recruited] the radical American cleric as an intelligence source in 2002. Director Robert Mueller did not dismiss the possibility. "I am not personally familiar with any effort to recruit Anwar al-Awlaki as an asset -- that does not mean to say there was not an effort at some level of the Bureau (FBI) or another agency to do so," Mueller said. Fox's ongoing reporting ... shows that in 2002 he was released from custody at JFK international airport -- despite an active warrant for his arrest -- with the okay of FBI Agent Wade Ammerman. Within days of his re-entry, al-Awlaki showed up in Ammerman's counter-terrorism investigation in Virginia into Ali al-Timimi, who is now serving a life sentence on non-terrorism charges. None of the information about al-Awlaki's release from federal custody at JFK, a sudden decision by the Justice Department in October 2002 to rescind an arrest warrant for the cleric, nor the cleric's connection to Ammerman was provided to the defense during Timimi’s 2005 trial. Documents ... show the FBI Director was more deeply involved in the post-9/11 handling of al-Awlaki than previously known. One memo from Mueller to then-Attorney General John Ashcroft on Oct. 3, 2002 -- seven days before the cleric re-entered the U.S. and was detained at JFK -- is marked "Secret" and titled "Anwar Aulaqi: IT-UBL/AL-QAEDA." "Why would al-Awlaki get the attention of the FBI Director? Why would a warrant for his arrest be pulled when he's trying to reenter the country?" asked Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton.
Note: Al-Awlaki, who was born in New Mexico and was a US citizen, died in a U.S. drone attack in Yemen nearly two years ago, the first American targeted for death by the CIA, by its own admission. With the confirmation that he had been an intelligence asset for the US government as early as 2002, his assassination takes on new significance. For more on the murky background of Al-Awlaki, click here and here.