Excerpts of Key News Articles in Major Media
Below are highly revealing excerpts of key news articles from the major media suggesting major cover-ups and corruption.
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to revealing excerpts of key major media news articles on several dozen engaging topics. And don't miss amazing excerpts from 20 of the most revealing news articles ever published.
Planted fake news stories on American TV
2006-05-29, The Independent (One of the U.K.'s leading newspapers)
Federal authorities are actively investigating dozens of American television stations for broadcasting items produced by the Bush administration and major corporations, and passing them off as normal news. Some of the fake news segments talked up success in the war in Iraq, or promoted the companies' products. Investigators from the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) are seeking information about stations across the country after a report produced...by the non-profit group Centre for Media and Democracy found that over a 10-month period at least 77 television stations were making use of the faux news broadcasts, known as Video News Releases (VNRs). Not one told viewers who had produced the items. The FCC has declined to comment on the investigation but investigators from the commission's enforcement unit recently approached Ms Farsetta for a copy of her group's report. Among items provided by the Bush administration to news stations was one in which an Iraqi-American in Kansas City was seen saying "Thank you Bush. Thank you USA" in response to the 2003 fall of Baghdad. The footage was actually produced by the State Department, one of 20 federal agencies that have produced and distributed such items. The FCC was urged to act by a lobbying campaign organised by Free Press, another non-profit group that focuses on media policy. More than 25,000 people [have] written to the FCC about the VNRs.
Intelligence Czar Can Waive SEC Rules
President George W. Bush has bestowed on his intelligence czar, John Negroponte, broad authority, in the name of national security, to excuse publicly traded companies from their usual accounting and securities-disclosure obligations. Notice of the development came in a brief entry in the Federal Register, dated May 5, 2006, that was opaque to the untrained eye. Unbeknownst to almost all of Washington and the financial world, Bush and every other President since Jimmy Carter have had the authority to exempt companies working on certain top-secret defense projects from portions of the 1934 Securities Exchange Act. Administration officials told BusinessWeek that they believe this is the first time a President has ever delegated the authority to someone outside the Oval Office. It couldn't be immediately determined whether any company has received a waiver under this provision. The timing of Bush's move is intriguing. On the same day the President signed the memo, Porter Goss resigned as director of the Central Intelligence Agency. Only six days later ... USA Today reported that the National Security Agency had obtained millions of calling records of ordinary citizens provided by three major U.S. phone companies. Negroponte oversees both the CIA and NSA in his role as the administration's top intelligence official. In addition to refusing to explain why Bush decided to delegate this authority to Negroponte, the White House declined to say whether Bush or any other President has ever exercised the authority and allowed a company to avoid standard securities disclosure and accounting requirements.
Note: For many revealing reports on government secrecy from major media sources, click here.
New Fears of Security Risks in Electronic Voting Systems
2006-05-12, New York Times
With primary election dates fast approaching in many states, officials in Pennsylvania and California issued urgent directives in recent days about a potential security risk in their Diebold Election Systems touch-screen voting machines, while other states with similar equipment hurried to assess the seriousness of the problem. "It's the most severe security flaw ever discovered in a voting system," said Michael I. Shamos, a professor of computer science at Carnegie Mellon University. "This is the barn door being wide open," said Douglas W. Jones, a professor of computer science at the University of Iowa. The new concerns about Diebold's equipment were discovered by Harri Hursti, a Finnish computer expert who was working at the request of Black Box Voting. As word of Mr. Hursti's findings spread, Diebold issued a warning to recipients of thousands of its machines, saying that it had found a "theoretical security vulnerability" that "could potentially allow unauthorized software to be loaded onto the system." Aviel Rubin, a professor of computer science at Johns Hopkins University, did the first in-depth analysis of the security flaws in the source code for Diebold touch-screen machines in 2003. After studying the latest problem, he said: "I almost had a heart attack. The implications of this are pretty astounding."
Note: For a recent Wall Street Journal article with more serious concerns, click here. No mention is made that these same problems existed in all recent elections using these machines. For key articles from other major media showing a major problem with electronic machines, click here.
NSA Whistleblower Alleges Illegal Spying
2006-05-11, ABC News
Russell Tice, a longtime insider at the National Security Agency, is now a whistleblower the agency would like to keep quiet. For 20 years, Tice worked in the shadows as he helped the United States spy on other people's conversations around the world. "I specialized in what's called special access programs," Tice said of his job. "We called them 'black world' programs and operations." But now, Tice tells ABC News that some of those secret "black world" operations run by the NSA were operated in ways that he believes violated the law. He is prepared to tell Congress all he knows about the alleged wrongdoing in these programs run by the Defense Department and the NSA. Tice says the technology exists to track and sort through every domestic and international phone call...and to search for key words or phrases that a terrorist might use. President Bush has admitted that he gave orders that allowed the NSA to eavesdrop on a small number of Americans without the usual requisite warrants. But Tice disagrees. He says the number of Americans subject to eavesdropping by the NSA could be in the millions. The NSA revoked Tice's security clearance in May of last year based on what it called psychological concerns and later dismissed him. Tice calls that bunk and says that's the way the NSA deals with troublemakers and whistleblowers.
Note: For many years, both the U.S. and U.K. denied the existence of Echelon, which according to the BBC article below is a "spying network that can eavesdrop on every single phone call, fax or e-mail, anywhere on the planet." http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/503224.stm
FBI Keeps Watch on Activists
2006-03-27, Los Angeles Times
The FBI, while waging a highly publicized war against terrorism, has spent resources gathering information on antiwar and environmental protesters and on activists who feed vegetarian meals to the homeless, the agency's internal memos show. For years, the FBI's definition of terrorism has included violence against property. That definition has led FBI investigations to online discussion boards, organizing meetings and demonstrations of a wide range of activist groups. The FBI's encounters with activists are described in hundreds of pages of documents obtained by the American Civil Liberties Union under the Freedom of Information Act after agents visited several activists before the 2004 political conventions. ACLU attorneys acknowledge that the FBI memos are heavily redacted and contain incomplete portraits of some cases. Still, the attorneys say, the documents show that the FBI has monitored groups that were not suspected of any crime. FBI officials respond that there is nothing improper about agents attending a meeting or demonstration.
The Ground Zero Grassy Knoll
2006-03-27, New York Magazine
Why, if the impact destroyed the planes’ supposedly crash-proof flight-recorder black boxes, was the FBI able to find, in perfect condition, the passport of Satam al Suqami, one of the...Flight 11 hijackers? How could they, an hour after the first World Trade Center crash, allow an obviously hostile airplane to smash into the Pentagon, headquarters of the entire military-industrial complex? A story in Newsweek...said these generals were told earlier that week not to fly. [On 9/11 a] fireman indicated the building in front of us. “That building is coming down,” he said. At 47 stories, it would be a skyscraper in most cities. Five minutes later, at 5:20, the building, 7 World Trade Center, crumbled. What happened at 7 WTC might be the key to the entire mystery. The $500 million insurance profit made by Larry Silverstein [and] the list of 7 WTC tenants sets conspiracy heads spinning: The IRS, the Department of Defense, and the CIA kept offices on the 25th floor. The Secret Service occupied the ninth and tenth. The Securities and Exchange Commission (home to vast records of bank transactions) was on floors 11 through 13. The 23rd floor was home to Rudy Giuliani’s Office of Emergency Management, his crisis center. Central to the scenario is a comment made by Silverstein in a 2002 PBS documentary. “We’ve had such a terrible loss of life. Maybe the smartest thing to do is pull it.” “Pull it”...is the term usually used for controlled demolition. 7 WTC is not even mentioned in The 9/11 Commission Report.
FBI Agent Slams Bosses at Moussaoui Trial
2006-03-21, CBS News/Associated Press
The FBI agent who arrested Zacarias Moussaoui in August 2001 testified Monday he spent almost four weeks trying to warn U.S. officials about the radical Islamic student pilot but "criminal negligence" by superiors in Washington thwarted a chance to stop the 9/11 attacks. Samit told MacMahon he couldn't persuade FBI headquarters or the Justice Department to take his fears seriously. Samit's complaints echoed those raised in 2002 by Coleen Rowley, the bureau's agent-lawyer in the Minneapolis office. Rowley went public with her frustrations, was named a Time magazine person of the year for whistleblowing. Samit revealed far more than Rowley of the details of the investigation. For each nugget of information, MacMahon asked Samit if Washington officials called to assess the implications. Time after time, Samit said no.
The Bullying of the Press
2006-02-26, London Times
I reported on eight of the [Downing Street] memos while working at the Daily Telegraph in September 2004. I then moved to the Sunday Times, where I obtained the other two memos. Why did the US newspapers take so long to pick up on the story? The memos were so momentous in what they told us about how Bush and Blair went to war...that they surely had to be reported. They were not only “the smoking gun” that proved all the lies; they also proved the lack of planning for the aftermath; the fraudulent use of the UN to make the war legal; and...the way in which the allies began the war...months before they went to the UN or Congress to get backing for war. The memo actually says...that the Prime Minister agreed at Crawford in April 2002 to go to war, so the British needed to "create the conditions" which would make the war legal under international law. In the wake of 9/11, the US media were initially prevented from any criticism of the administration. Then when the need to criticize became unavoidable, they were cowed by administration claims that it helped the terrorists. There is something grotesque about Bush saying that his administration is setting “a forward strategy for freedom” around the world while it is attempting at the same time to bully the US press back into submission at home. I don’t for one moment believe it will succeed. But none of us can afford to be complacent.
MI5 rebels expose Tube bomb cover-up
2006-02-26, London Times
MI5 is facing an internal revolt by officers alarmed about intelligence failures and the lack of resources to fight Islamic terrorism. To illustrate their concern, agents have leaked more topsecret documents to The Sunday Times because they want a public inquiry into the “missed intelligence” leading up to the July attacks in London. They believe ministers have withheld information from the public about what the security services knew about the suspects before the bombing of July 7 and the abortive attacks of July 21. The documents include an admission by John Scarlett, head of SIS, the secret intelligence service (also known as MI6), that one of the July 21 suspects was tracked on a trip to Pakistan just months before the attempted bombings. MI5, which is responsible for national security, allowed the July 21 suspect to travel to Pakistan after he was detained and interviewed at a British airport. It stopped monitoring him because it said “the Pakistani authorities assessed that he was doing nothing of significance”. They are critical of Blair, who has ruled out an inquiry saying it would distract the security services from fighting terrorism. The assessment echoes a decision by MI5 to halt surveillance on two of the July 7 bombers 16 months before the attacks. Both were filmed and taped by MI5 agents as they met two men allegedly plotting to carry out a terrorist attack in England.
Two in a Million: Danny and Annie Perasa
The story of Danny and Annie Perasa — how they met, and how they've stayed in love — inspires many who hear it. Their joy in life, and in one another, was celebrated recently in New York, where a crowd gathered to honor Danny and Annie. The Perasas are a memorable couple. In person, they come off like a pair of favorite grandparents, with thoughtful wisecracks and stories that take unpredictable turns. They say their affinity for one another was always obvious. Their enthusiasm has now been honored in a tangible way. The StoryCorps oral history project has dedicated its booth in Grand Central Terminal to the Perasas. On Friday, Feb. 10, a plaque was unveiled that dedicated the booth to the Perasas. The plaque reads: "This booth is dedicated to Danny and Annie Perasa, who recorded their story here on January 6, 2004. Their humor, heart, eloquence and love will never be forgotten." The couple made the trip to the ceremony despite Danny's illness: suffering from pancreatic cancer, he is currently in hospice care. Their visit was a treat for those present, as the Perasas revisited the conversation they had that day in 2004, and the life they've shared since 1978.
Note: For a very touching six-minute NPR video on this true story of beautiful marriage, click here. For a treasure trove of great news articles which will inspire you to make a difference, click here.
National security whistle-blowers allege retaliation
2006-02-16, Sacramento Bee (leading newspaper of California's capital city)
Military and intelligence officers told spellbound lawmakers Tuesday that their careers had been ruined by superiors because they refused to lie about Able Danger, Abu Ghraib and other national security controversies. Lt. Col. Anthony Shaffer ... told a House Government Reform subcommittee that he and other intelligence officers and contractors working on the top-secret program code-named "Able Danger" had identified Mohammed Atta, ringleader of the Sept. 11 attacks, but were prevented from passing their findings to the FBI. "Many of us have a personal commitment to ... going forward to expose the truth and wrongdoing of government officials who, before and after the 9/11 attacks, failed to do their job." Shaffer contradicted recent statements by Philip Zelikow, former executive director of the Sept. 11 commission, who denied having met with Shaffer and other Able Danger operatives in Afghanistan in October 2003. "I did meet with him," Shaffer said. "I have the business card he gave me. I find it hard to believe that he could not remember meeting me." The commission's chairman and vice chairman, former New Jersey Gov. Thomas Kean and former Rep. Lee Hamilton, released a statement saying the panel had looked into the work of Able Danger and found it "historically insignificant."
Note: Though Able Danger received wide media coverage when it first came out six months ago, CNN was the only major media outlet to give significant coverage to this most important news. Yet CNN did not post the text of the program on their website. Why isn't our media covering this vital topic? For lots more on this, see http://www.WantToKnow.info/911information and http://www.WantToKnow.info/abledanger911
Exposed: the secret corporate funding behind health research
2006-02-07, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
Academics and the media have failed dismally to ask the crucial question of scientists' claims: who is paying you? In the 1990s, [Arise] was one of the world's most influential public-health groups. It described itself as "a worldwide association of eminent scientists who act as independent commentators". Its purpose ... was to show how "everyday pleasures, such as eating chocolate, smoking, drinking tea, coffee and alcohol, contribute to the quality of life". "Scientific studies show that enjoying the simple pleasures in life, without feeling guilty, can reduce stress and increase resistance to disease". Between September 1993 and March 1994 ... [Arise] generated 195 newspaper articles and radio and television interviews, in places such as the Wall Street Journal, the International Herald Tribune, the Independent, the Evening Standard, El País, La Repubblica, Rai and the BBC. In 1998 [tobacco] firms were obliged to place their internal documents in a public archive. Among them ... is a memo from ... Philip Morris - the world's largest tobacco company. The title is "Arise 1994-95 Activities and Funding". This showed that in the previous financial year Arise had received $373,400: ... over 99% - from Philip Morris, British American Tobacco, RJ Reynolds and Rothmans. The memo suggests Arise was run not by eminent scientists but by eminent tobacco companies. How much more science is being published in academic journals with undeclared interests like these? How many more media campaigns ... have been secretly funded and steered by corporations?
Note: If you want to understand how corporate interests secretly manipulate both scientific results and public perception, this excellent article is well worth reading.
Corporate Wealth Share Rises for Top-Income Americans
2006-01-29, New York Times
New government data indicate that the concentration of corporate wealth among the highest-income Americans grew significantly in 2003, as a trend that began in 1991 accelerated in the first year that President Bush and Congress cut taxes on capital. In 2003 the top 1 percent of households owned 57.5 percent of corporate wealth, up from 53.4 percent the year before, according to a Congressional Budget Office analysis of the latest income tax data. The top group's share of corporate wealth has grown by half since 1991, when it was 38.7 percent. In 2003, incomes in the top 1 percent of households ranged from $237,000 to several billion dollars. For every group below the top 1 percent, shares of corporate wealth have declined since 1991. Long-term capital gains were taxed at 28 percent until 1997, and at 20 percent until 2003, when rates were cut to 15 percent. The top rate on dividends was cut to 15 percent from 35 percent that year. The White House said it did not believe that the 2003 tax cuts had much influence on wealth shares.
Climate Expert Says NASA Tried to Silence Him
2006-01-29, New York Times
After [a] speech and the release of data by Dr. Hansen on Dec. 15 showing that 2005 was probably the warmest year in at least a century, officials at the headquarters of the space agency repeatedly [warned] Dr. Hansen that there would be "dire consequences" if such statements continued. Hansen, longtime director of the agency's Goddard Institute for Space Studies, said in an interview that officials at NASA headquarters had ordered the public affairs staff to review his coming lectures, papers, postings on the Goddard Web site and requests for interviews from journalists. Dean Acosta, deputy assistant administrator for public affairs at the space agency, said...the restrictions on Dr. Hansen applied to all [NASA] personnel. "This is not about any individual or any issue like global warming," he said. Dr. Hansen strongly disagreed...saying such procedures had already prevented the public from fully grasping recent findings. Dr. Hansen said that nothing in 30 years equaled the push made since early December to keep him from publicly discussing what he says are clear-cut dangers from further delay in curbing carbon dioxide. The fight between Dr. Hansen and administration officials echoes other recent disputes. At climate laboratories of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, for example, many scientists who routinely took calls from reporters five years ago can now do so only if the interview is approved by administration officials in Washington, and then only if a public affairs officer is present or on the phone.
Most powerful hurricanes of 2005 were filled with mysterious lightning
The boom of thunder and crackle of lightning generally mean one thing: a storm is coming. Curiously, though, the biggest storms of all, hurricanes, are notoriously lacking in lightning. Hurricanes blow, they rain, they flood, but seldom do they crackle. During the record-setting hurricane season of 2005, three of the most powerful storms--Rita, Katrina, and Emily--did have lightning, lots of it. And researchers would like to know why. Richard Blakeslee of the Global Hydrology and Climate Center (GHCC) in Huntsville, Alabama, was one of a team of scientists who explored Hurricane Emily. "Hurricanes are most likely to produce lightning when they're making landfall," says Blakeslee. But there were no mountains beneath the "electric hurricanes" of 2005 -- only flat water. It's tempting to think that, because Emily, Rita and Katrina were all exceptionally powerful, their sheer violence somehow explains their lightning. But Blakeslee says that this explanation is too simple. "Other storms have been equally intense and did not produce much lightning," he says. "There must be something else at work."
Note: A number of researchers suspect there may have been clandestine involvement in Katrina and other recent hurricanes, possibly using HAARP technologies, which have been well documented. For an excellent summary of this, click here. For more on HAARP, click here.
The Business of Voting
2005-12-18, New York Times
Diebold, the controversial electronic voting machine manufacturer, is coming off a tumultuous week. Its chief executive, Walden O'Dell, resigned. It was hit with a pair of class-action lawsuits charging insider trading and misrepresentation, and a county in Florida concluded that Diebold's voting machines could be hacked. The counting of votes is a public trust. Diebold, whose machines count many votes, has never acted as if it understood this. Mr. O'Dell made national headlines when he wrote a fund-raising letter before the 2004 election expressing his commitment to help deliver the electoral votes of Ohio - where Diebold is based, and where its machines are used - to President Bush. Under pressure, Diebold barred its top officials from contributing to campaigns. But this month, The Plain Dealer in Cleveland reported that three executives not covered by the ban continued to make contributions. Diebold's voting machines have a troubled history. The company was accused of installing improperly certified software, which is illegal, in a 2002 governor's race in Georgia. Across the country, it reached a multimillion-dollar settlement with the California attorney general last year of a lawsuit alleging that it made false claims about the security of its machines.
Note: Kevin Shelley, the California attorney general mentioned here, was eventually forced out of office by an aggressive media campaign accusing him of things we know are done by almost all politicians. For reliable information on this, see http://www.wanttoknow.info/050207kevinshelleysresignation.
'National interest' halts arms corruption inquiry
2005-12-15, The Guardian (One of the U.K.'s leading newspapers)
A major criminal investigation into alleged corruption by the arms company BAE Systems and its executives was stopped in its tracks yesterday when the prime minister claimed it would endanger Britain's security. The remarkable intervention was announced by the attorney general, Lord Goldsmith, who took the decision to end the Serious Fraud Office [SFO] inquiry into alleged bribes paid by the company to Saudi officials. BAE and the Saudi embassy had frantically lobbied the government for the long-running investigation to be discontinued, with the company insisting it was poised to lose another lucrative Saudi contract. This came at a time when the SFO appeared to have made a significant breakthrough, with investigators on the brink of accessing key Swiss bank accounts. Lord Goldsmith consulted the prime minister, the defence secretary, foreign secretary, and the intelligence services, and they decided that "the wider public interest" "outweighed the need to maintain the rule of law". The decision was condemned last night as naked political interference in a criminal case. The Liberal Democrat chief of staff said the government had succumbed to Saudi pressure. The UK made overseas bribery illegal in 2002, under US pressure. No prosecutions have taken place under the new law. Clare Short, Mr Blair's former cabinet colleague, said: "The message it sends to corrupt businessmen is carry on - the government will support you."
Note: It's interesting how "the wider public interest" is so often tied to lucrative contracts and profits.
Bush Secretly Lifted Some Limits on Spying in U.S. After 9/11
2005-12-15, New York Times
The White House asked The New York Times not to publish this article, arguing that it could jeopardize continuing investigations and alert would-be terrorists that they might be under scrutiny. After meeting with senior administration officials to hear their concerns, the newspaper delayed publication for a year to conduct additional reporting. Some information that administration officials argued could be useful to terrorists has been omitted. While many details about the program remain secret, officials familiar with it said the N.S.A. eavesdropped without warrants on up to 500 people in the United States at any given time.
Note: The above quote is from page two of a ten-page article on the Times website. Isn't it interesting that the White House can keep vital news from being reported? See Media Information Center for more.
New tests fuel doubts about vote machines
2005-12-15, Miami Herald
A political operative with hacking skills could alter the results of any election on Diebold-made voting machines -- and possibly other new voting systems in Florida -- according to the state capital's election supervisor, who said Diebold software has failed repeated tests. "That's kind of scary. If there's no paper trail, you have to rely solely on electronic results. And now we know that they can be manipulated under the right conditions, without a person even leaving a fingerprint," said Sancho, who once headed the state's elections supervisors association. Sancho said Diebold isn't the only one to blame for hacker-prone equipment. The Florida secretary of state's office should have caught these problems early on, he said. A spokeswoman for the secretary of state's office said any faults Sancho found were between him and Diebold. A nonprofit election-monitoring group called BlackBoxVoting.org...hired Herbert Thompson, a computer-science professor and strategist at Security Innovation, which tests software for companies such as Google and Microsoft. Thompson told The Herald he was "shocked" at how easy it was to get in, make the loser the winner and leave without a trace. He typed five lines of computer code -- and switched 5,000 votes from one candidate to another."I am positive an eighth grader could do this," Thompson said.
Daring rescue of whale: Humpback nuzzled her saviors in thanks
2005-12-14, San Francisco Chronicle
A humpback whale freed by divers from a tangle of crab trap lines near the Farallon Islands nudged its rescuers and flapped around in what marine experts said was a rare and remarkable encounter. "It felt to me like it was thanking us, knowing that it was free and that we had helped it," James Moskito, one of the rescue divers, said Tuesday. "It stopped about a foot away from me, pushed me around a little bit and had some fun." Sunday's daring rescue was the first successful attempt on the West Coast to free an entangled humpback. It was a very risky maneuver...because the mere flip of a humpback's massive tail can kill a man. "I was the first diver in the water, and my heart sank when I saw all the lines wrapped around it," said [James] Moskito. "I really didn't think we were going to be able to save it." Moskito said about 20 crab-pot ropes, which are 240 feet long with weights every 60 feet, were wrapped around the animal. Rope was wrapped at least four times around the tail, the back and the left front flipper, and there was a line in the whale's mouth. Moskito and three other divers spent about an hour cutting the ropes with a special curved knife. The whale floated passively in the water the whole time, he said, giving off a strange kind of vibration. "When I was cutting the line going through the mouth, its eye was there winking at me, watching me," Moskito said. "It was an epic moment of my life." When the whale realized it was free, it began swimming around in circles, according to the rescuers. Moskito said it swam to each diver, nuzzled him and then swam to the next one.
Explore our full index
to revealing excerpts of key major media news articles on several dozen engaging topics. And don't miss amazing excerpts from 20 of the most revealing news articles ever published.