Sunday, June 9, 2019

Loud & Clear Discussion on Trump's and CNN's Remarks on Vietnam War (6/7/2019)

CNN Criticizes Trump Criticizing the Vietnam War

President Trump this week criticized the war in Vietnam, a sentiment that many Americans share. Rather than concentrate on keeping America out of more wars, CNN took him to task about his comments and his not having served in the military, noting that many soldiers don’t want to serve but “it is the call of their country.” Brian and John speak with Jim Kavanagh, editor in chief of

Listen to "CNN Criticizes Trump Criticizing the Vietnam War" on Spreaker.

Loud & Clear is a daily program of news, commentary, and political analysis on Radio Sputnik, hosted by Brian Becker and John Kiriakou, featuring independent experts, activists, and political writers. (Introduction above is theirs, with related articles of mine referenced in brackets.)

Week in Review Discussion on The Critical Hour (5/31/19)

Vault 7 Charges Not Pursued For Assange, But He Still Faces Life For Espionage

On this episode of The Critical Hour, Dr. Wilmer Leon is joined by Lee Stranahan, co-host of Fault Lines on Sputnik Radio; Daniel Lazare, journalist and author of "The Frozen Republic," "The Velvet Coup" and "America's Undeclared War"; and Jim Kavanagh, editor of The Polemicist. 

The Justice Department has decided not to charge Julian Assange for his role in exposing some of the CIA’s most secret spying tools, according to a US official and two other people familiar with the case. So instead, the Justice Department will go after Assange on the one count for allegedly assisting Chelsea Manning and the 17-count Espionage Act indictment. According to Politico, there are no plans to bring any additional indictments prior to his extradition. Is this as big a concession as many believe? 

Loud & Clear Discussion of Michael Avenatti Indictment (5/23/2019)

Ex-Darling of the Media: Michael Avenatti Charged Again as a Fraudster

On today's episode of Loud & Clear, Brian Becker and John Kiriakou are joined by Jim Kavanagh, the editor of

Michael Avenatti, the attorney who rocketed to fame by representing adult film star Stormy Daniels in her lawsuit against President Trump, was charged yesterday with defrauding her of $300,000. Avenatti was charged earlier this year in New York on multiple felony counts of trying to extort the Nike shoe company of $25 million. And he faces yet more felony charges in Los Angeles, accusing him of defrauding other clients. However, at the height of his public notoriety last year, he was hailed as a hero by the corporate media and even established an exploratory committee and said he wanted to run for president.

Loud & Clear is a daily program of news, commentary, and political analysis on Radio Sputnik, hosted by Brian Becker and John Kiriakou, featuring independent experts, activists, and political writers. (Introduction above is theirs, with related articles of mine referenced in brackets.)

Thursday, May 30, 2019

Swedish Sex Pistol Aimed at Assange


In my article, Avoiding Assange, a month ago, right after the first US indictment was issued, I addressed two diversionary arguments that I knew would be used by those who want to hide their complicity with American imperialism under leftish cover—that is, those who don't want to be seen as endorsing the United States government’s prosecution of Assange for, and intimidation of every journalist in the world from, reporting the embarrassing truth about American war crimes, but who also don't really want to stand in the way of Assange’s extradition to the United States.

Wednesday, May 29, 2019

Week in Review Discussion on The Critical Hour (5/24/19)

Federal Judge Writes “Here We Go Again” as He Blocks Mississippi Abortion Law

It’s Friday, so that means it's panel time. 

A federal judge today issued a preliminary injunction blocking Mississippi's fetal heartbeat anti-abortion law from going into effect, saying it infringes on women's health care rights. “Here we go again. Mississippi has passed another law banning abortions prior to viability,” Judge Carlton Reeves wrote in his order. "By banning abortions after the detection of a fetal heartbeat, SB 226 prevents a woman’s free choice, which is central to personal dignity and autonomy.” The Mississippi ban prohibited abortions after the detection of a fetal heartbeat, or around six weeks into pregnancy. Governor Phil Bryant signed the bill into law in March. The lawsuit leading to the injunction was filed by the Jackson Women's Health Organization against Thomas Dobbs, the state health officer of Mississippi.

After defying political gravity for three years, Theresa May brought her tortured tenure as UK prime minister to a close Friday. "I will shortly leave the job that it has been the honor of my life to hold," she said outside Downing Street, her voice quivering in the morning sunshine. And with that, she's off - or at least she will be later in the summer, once a new Conservative leader is elected. We knew it was imminent, but to me, it is still a surprise.

[My related article: For What It’s Worth: The Yellow Vests and the Left]

The US government is stressing that Julian Assange is no journalist after bringing an 18-count indictment against the co-founder of WikiLeaks. Federal prosecutors are accusing Assange of violating the Espionage Act in working with a former Army intelligence analyst to obtain and distribute classified information. That worries some professional journalists because it's close to what they do. Assange remains in jail in London after being evicted from the Ecuadorian Embassy there. 

[My related article: Avoiding Assange]

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo notified lawmakers Friday that US President Donald Trump is invoking his emergency authority to sidestep Congress and complete 22 arms deals that would benefit Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and other countries, despite lawmakers’ objections to the transactions. Both Republicans and Democrats urged the Trump administration this week not to take the rare step of exploiting a legal window to push through deals - worth about $8 billion, according to congressional aides - that lawmakers have blocked from being finalized. You know, it was Wall Street who was happy and well cared for during the Obama administration. Now it seems like the war machine, the military industrial complex and the arms manufacturers are being so well cared Saufor.

Acting Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan on Thursday acknowledged that the growing tensions with Iran “may involve sending additional troops” to the region. Shanahan's comments marked the first public confirmation that the Trump administration is considering sending additional US forces to curtail what it claims are “troubling and escalatory indications and warnings” from Iran. The Pentagon has already deployed a carrier strike group and a bomber task force to the Middle East, and news reports emerged this week that Shanahan on Thursday was set to present the White House with a request to deploy 10,000 troops to the Middle East. An earlier report said that the US could send upwards of 120,000 additional troops.


Dr. Jack Rasmus — Professor of economics at Saint Mary's College of California and author of "Central Bankers at the End of Their Ropes: Monetary Policy and the Coming Depression."

Jim Kavanagh — Political analyst and commentator and editor of The Polemicist.

Caleb Maupin — Journalist and political analyst who focuses his coverage on US foreign policy and the global system of monopoly capitalism and imperialism.

Listen to "Federal Judge Writes “Here We Go Again” as He Blocks Mississippi Abortion Law" on Spreaker.

The Critical Hour is a daily 60-minute news analysis and talk radio program on Radio Sputnik hosted by Dr. Wilmer Leon. Introduction above is theirs, with related articles of mine referenced in brackets.

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Be Careful What You Ask For: Wasting Time with Manafort, Cohen, and Russiagate

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