2020-09-17: News Headlines

Binoy Kampmark (2020-09-17). Assange's Seventh Day at the Old Bailey: Diligent Redactions and Avoiding Harm. dissidentvoice.org September 16. Central Criminal Court, London. Proceedings today at the Old Bailey regarding Julian Assange's extradition returned to journalistic practice, redaction of source names and that ongoing obsession with alleged harm arising from WikiLeaks releases. John Goetz of Der Spiegel added his bit for the defence, making an effort to set the record straight on …

_____ (2020-09-17). Assange Court Report September 16: Afternoon. popularresistance.org A famous Vietnam era whistleblower, 89-year-old Daniel Ellsberg, has told a court that he feels "a great identification," with both Julian Assange and his source Chelsea Manning, who, he said, "were willing to suffer the risk of imprisonment or even death to get information to the American public." | Ellsberg, a former US Marine officer who served with the US State Department in Vietnam during the war years, is best known for leaking a huge tranche of US government documents on the war to the New York Times in 1970, documents that showed that the government had been lying to the American people about the conflict…

Abdul Rahman (2020-09-17). WikiLeaks' Guantanamo files exposed inhumane American 'war on terror'. peoplesdispatch.org The documents published by Wikileaks in 2011 revealed how top US officials were directly involved in the torture and illegal detention of many innocents. This explains the US attempt to punish Julian Assange for revealing their failures…

Caitlin Johnstone (2020-09-17). News Media Who Ignore The Assange Trial Are Admitting They Don't Care About Journalism. thealtworld.com The Sydney Morning Herald just published an article titled " It's actually a rather shocking smear piece for the SMH, who has been one of the better Australian publications at giving Assange a fair hearing over the years. The article's author Latika Bourke spends an inordinate amount of time waxing on about Assange's naughty "outburst" and how he was…

Craig Murray (2020-09-17). Your Man in the Public Gallery: Assange Hearing Day 10. globalresearch.ca The gloves were off on Tuesday as the US Government explicitly argued that all journalists are liable to prosecution under the Espionage Act (1917) for publishing classified information, citing

Staff (2020-09-17). Daniel Ellsberg Warns U.S. Press Freedom Under Attack in WikiLeaks' Julian Assange Extradition Case. democracynow.org Legendary Pentagon Papers whistleblower Daniel Ellsberg says Julian Assange's extradition hearing in London could have far-reaching consequences for press freedoms. The WikiLeaks founder faces an ever-evolving array of espionage and hacking charges related to the release of diplomatic cables that revealed war crimes committed by U.S. forces in Iraq and Afghanistan. Assange faces almost certain conviction, if extradited, and 175 years in prison. "The American press has remained in kind of a state of denial for 40 years, really, since my case, that the Espionage Act has wording in it that could be aimed directly at…

_____ (2020-09-17). Good Ellsberg, Bad Assange. popularresistance.org Opponents of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange often hold up Pentagon Papers whistleblower Daniel Ellsberg as an example of someone who was responsible for a good leak. They insist WikiLeaks is not like the Pentagon Papers because supposedly Assange was reckless with sensitive documents. | On the seventh day of an extradition trial against Assange, Ellsberg dismantled this false narrative and outlined for a British magistrate court why Assange would not receive a fair trial in the United States. | Assange is accused of 17 counts of violating the Espionage Act and one count of conspiracy to commit a computer crime…

pip.hinman (2020-09-17). Julian Assange's treatment amounts to torture — it must end. greenleft.org.au

Amanda Yee (2020-09-17). Brooklyn supply drive honors legacy of community activists Donna & Nicholas Heyward, Sr. liberationnews.org Nicholas Heyward, Sr. became a vocal advocate against police brutality after NYPD officer Brian George shot and killed his 13-year old son, Nicholas Heyward, Jr. in 1994.

Alan Macleod (2020-09-16). "A Disgrace": Amnesty International Blocked From Monitoring Trial of Julian Assange. mintpressnews.com Amnesty International's Europe Director described the hearings against Assange as an "assault on the right to freedom of expression" that would have a "chilling effect on media freedom."

_____ (2020-09-16). Day Nine: Julian Assange Extradition Hearing. popularresistance.org Things became not merely dramatic in the Assange courtroom today, but spiteful and nasty. There were two real issues, the evidence and the procedure. On the evidence, there were stark details of the dreadful regime Assange will face in US jails if extradited. On the procedure, we saw behaviour from the prosecution QC that went well beyond normal cross examination and was a real attempt to denigrate and even humiliate the witness. I hope to prove that to you by a straightforward exposition of what happened today in court, after which I shall add further comment.

Binoy Kampmark (2020-09-16). Assange on Trial: Supermax Prisons and Special Administrative Measures. counterpunch.org DAY FIVE Having had a coronavirus scare towards the end of last week, necessitating a brief suspension of proceedings for September 11, the extradition proceedings for Julian Assange resumed with Eric Lewis. The chairman of the board of Reprieve, who has cut his teeth on representing Afghan detainees in US custody and those in Guantánamo,

_____ (2020-09-16). Democrats Ignore U.S. Military's Refutation of 'Russian Bounties' Story. strategic-culture.org Caitlin JOHNSTONE | NBC News Two months after top Pentagon officials vowed to get to the bottom of whether the Russian government bribed the Taliban to kill American service members, the commander of troops in the region says a detailed review of all available intelligence has not been able to corroborate the existence of such a program. | "It just has not been proved to a level of certainty that satisfies me," Gen. Frank McKenzie, comm…

Binoy Kampmark (2020-09-16). Assange's Sixth Day at the Old Bailey: US Prison Conditions and Politicised Prosecutions. dissidentvoice.org September 15. Central Criminal Court, London. Today, witnesses appearing in the extradition trial of Julian Assange fleshed out some points touched upon the previous day: the fate awaiting the WikiLeaks publisher in the US prison system, and the political nature of process. Before commencing, Judge Vanessa Baraitser was a touch peeved. She noted that one …

_____ (2020-09-16). Assange Would Not Have Fair US Trial, Witness Tells Old Bailey. popularresistance.org Julian Assange's extradition hearing resumed yesterday morning after a coronavirus test for a member of the prosecution's legal team came back negative. | Mark Summers QC, one of Assange's lawyers, asked District Judge Vanessa Baraitser to give a direction mandating the use of masks for the remainder of the hearing. She responded that government guidance on wearing masks in public places in the Old Bailey "does not include the well of the court," before saying, "those that wish to wear masks in the well of the court are welcome to do so" but "there is no obligation to do so, and I make no direction."

Anish R M (2020-09-16). Assange will not get a fair trial in US, says Pentagon Papers publisher in testimony. peoplesdispatch.org In the recent set of testimonies, Assange's defense team dismantled the prosecution's argument that Assange caused any harm by publishing classified names…

WSWS (2020-09-16). London bus drivers resolve to fight for Assange's freedom. wsws.org The first action of the newly formed London Bus Drivers Rank-and-File Safety Committee was to pass a resolution calling for the defence of imprisoned WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange.

Noam Chomsky (2020-09-16). Chomsky, Walker and Ellsberg Defend Julian Assange. zcomm.org Alice Walker, Noam Chomsky, and Daniel Ellsberg oppose the extradition of Julian Assange to the US to face charges under the Espionage Act…

RT (2020-09-16). Pentagon Papers leaker Daniel Ellsberg testifies in Assange's defense, says WikiLeaks exposed 'war crimes' in 'public interest'. rt.com Whistleblower Daniel Ellsberg — whose 'Pentagon Papers' leak exposed illegal US bombing during the Vietnam War — said Julian Assange would not see a fair trial if extradited to the US, comparing the publisher's case to his own. | Testifying at Assange's extradition hearing on Wednesday, Ellsberg said the WikiLeaks co-founder would be denied a chance to defend himself if sent to the US for a trial, noting that, like in his own case, Assange would not be permitted to argue his publications were in the 'public interest.' | "I observe the closest of similarities to the position I faced, where the expos…

Brett Wilkins, staff writer (2020-09-16). Daniel Ellsberg Tells UK Court That US Seeks Both 'Revenge' Against Julian Assange and to 'Crush' Future Whistleblowers. commondreams.org The Pentagon Papers leaker previously called Assange's prosecution the most "significant attack on freedom of the press" since his 1971 case. | www.commondreams.org/sites/default/files/styles/cd_special_coverage/public/headline/thumbs/assange_ellsberg.jpg

Manlio Dinucci (2020-09-16). VIDEO — Con Assange Messa a Processo la Libertà di Tutti. globalresearch.ca Julian Assange si trova rinchiuso in un carcere di massima sicurezza in Gran Bretagna dove attende di essere giudicato. Nel caso dovesse essere estradato negli Stati Uniti rischierebbe fino a 175 anni di carcere. In questo focus speciale di

yenisafak (2020-09-16). Maduro security forces committed crimes against humanity: UN. yenisafak.com Venezuelan security forces and allied groups have committed systematic human rights violations including killings and torture amounting to crimes against humanity, U.N. investigators said on Wednesday.Reasonable grounds existed to believe that President Nicolas Maduro and his interior and defence ministers ordered or contributed to the crimes documented in the report in order to silence opposition, they said.Most unlawful executions by state agents have not been prosecuted in Venezuela, where the rule of law and democratic institutions have broken down, they added.The U.N. fact-finding mission said other national…

WSWS (2020-09-16). Nurse alleges forced sterilizations, medical malpractice at Georgia immigrant detention center. wsws.org The chilling report provides further evidence of the sadistic abuse meted out by the Trump administration in its fascistic war on immigrants.

Walter Smolarek (2020-09-16). Police murder of Daniel Prude: Document release causes new scandal. liberationnews.org A new wave of outrage is sweeping Rochester, N.Y. following the release of internal government documents related to the police murder of Daniel Prude, a 41 year-old Black man who had traveled to the city to visit his brother. The documents detail how city authorities conspired to cover up the facts surrounding his death. Prude …

Alex MacDonald (2020-09-16). 'Physical evidence' of killings presented at Syrian officials' trial in Germany. middleeasteye.net 'Physical evidence' of killings presented at Syrian officials' trial in Germany | Anwar Raslan and Eyad al-Gharib are on trial over alleged involvement in notorious Branch 251 intelligence unit | Wed, 09/16/2020 – 13: 54 | 'The Muted Demonstration', an installation by Syrian artist Khaled Barakeh, which consists of structures dressed in clothes that belong to Syrian activists, on sidelines of Ko…

A Guest Author (2020-09-16). Growing old in prison after COVID-19. workers.org By Major Tillery Major Tillery is an innocent man who has spent 35 years in prison because gross prosecutorial and judicial misconduct led to his fraudulent conviction for murder in 1985. He has spent 20 years in solitary confinement. Major has become an advocate for prisoners' rights against the injustice . . . |

RT (2020-09-16). Another color revolution? US orchestrating Belarusian unrest, says Russian spy chief Naryshkin; Belarus' leader Lukashenko agrees. rt.com The director of Russia's foreign intelligence service (SVR) has accused the US of fomenting anti-government demonstrations in Belarus. Spy boss Sergey Naryshkin says Washington provided about $20 million to bolster the opposition. | His comments came as the president of Belarus said that — what he called — the orchestrators of the current events planned their tactics in accordance with the classic American textbook of color revolutions. Speaking on Wednesday, Alexander Lukashenko added that the turmoil had been plotted by Western countries for over a decade. | "According to the available information,…

Craig Murray (2020-09-15). Your Man in the Public Gallery: Assange Hearing Day 9. globalresearch.ca Things became not merely dramatic in the Assange courtroom today, but spiteful and nasty. There were two real issues, the evidence and the procedure. On the evidence, there were stark details of the dreadful regime Assange will face in US …

_____ (2020-09-15). Day Five: Julian Assange Case. popularresistance.org Paused last week due to a COVID19 scare, Julian Assange's extradition hearing resumed today with witness testimony from Eric Lewis, chairman of the board of Reprieve and a lawyer who "represents Guantanamo and Afghan detainees in litigation, seeking redress and accountability for torture and religious abuse while in US custody." | Lewis confirmed that before being asked to provide expert testimony on this case, he opined in the press that he believes Assange shouldn't be extradited or prosecuted, and while he handled the facts objectively in providing his witness statement, those are still his views today.

Binoy Kampmark (2020-09-15). Assange's Fifth Day at the Old Bailey: Supermax Prisons and Special Administrative Measures. dissidentvoice.org Having had a coronavirus scare towards the end of last week, necessitating a brief suspension of proceedings for September 11, the extradition proceedings for Julian Assange resumed with Eric Lewis. The chairman of the board of Reprieve, who has cut his teeth on representing Afghan detainees in US custody and those in Guantánamo, has not …

Gareth Porter (2020-09-15). Dark Web Voter Database Report Casts New Doubts on Russian Election Hack Narrative. globalresearch.ca A new report showing that US state-level voter databases were publicly available calls into question the narrative that Russian intelligence "targeted" US state election-related websites in 2016. | *** | A September 1

Paul Krehbiel (2020-09-15). It's crunchtime: Rolling up our sleeves to beat Trump. peoplesworld.org We are in an unprecedented moment in our country's history. Will we move toward a more right-wing authoritarian fascist state, or will we defeat this threat? What we do between now and November 3 will answer that question. Miles Taylor, former Republican chief of staff of Homeland Security under Trump, described a meeting with a …

a guest author (2020-09-15). In Buffalo, N.Y., Black Lives Matter protest cop brutality. workers.org On Sept. 4, hundreds of protesters took to the streets and gathered outside the district police station in North Buffalo in the busy Hertel Avenue shopping area. The demonstrators demanded the firing of over a dozen cops with histories of police brutality and called for their salaries of almost $1.5 . . . |

RT (2020-09-15). First they came for RT: US now wants Qatar's AJ+ to register as FOREIGN AGENT. rt.com AJ+, Al Jazeera's online channel, has been told to register as a foreign agent by the US government, under a precedent set against RT and Chinese outlets in recent years. The Qatar-based outlet is blaming UAE lobbyists. | "Despite assertions of editorial independence and freedom of expression, Al Jazeera Media Network and its affiliates are controlled and funded by the Government of Qatar," Jay Bratt, head of the counterintelligence and export control at the Department of Justice, wrote in a letter sent to Al Jazeera on Monday, according to Mother Jones magazine. | That means AJ+ is required to register as an…

teleSUR (2020-09-15). Colombia: 58 Officers Under Investigation for Police Brutality. telesurenglish.net Colombia's authorities Monday announced that 58 police officers are under investigation for allegedly shooting protesters during the anti-police brutality demonstrations that have shaken Bogota over the past week. | RELATED: | After the analysis of at least 50 videos, 58 officers were identified as having abusive behavior during the protests that followed lawyer Javier Ordoñez's murder. | The uniformed officers "accepted…

WSWS (2020-09-15). Exposure of Trump's lies on COVID-19 implicates Spain's Podemos party. wsws.org Though it had access to intelligence briefings on the deadly danger posed by the pandemic, Podemos adopted a criminally negligent policy.

Murtaza Hussain (2020-09-15). Railroad Industry Group Passed Intel on Environmental Journalist to Cops. zcomm.org By distributing private intelligence reports to federal "fusion centers," industries can influence how law enforcement views threats…

Ahmed AbdulKareem (2020-09-14). Israel and the UAE Hope to Turn Yemen's Remote Islands into an Intel Gathering Hub. globalresearch.ca Often a flashpoint for tensions between international rivals and a major chokepoint for much of the world's maritime transit, the waters surrounding Yemen have become a much-vaunted prize for regional intelligence services. | *** | In the wake of the recent

_____ (2020-09-14). Trump's War On Journalism Takes Center Stage. popularresistance.org In the last half-century, journalists James Bamford, Ben Bradlee, Seymour Hersh, and Neil Sheehan were each threatened with prosecution under the Espionage Act. But the U.S. government never followed through with Espionage Act charges against a journalist until 2019, when WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange was arrested and charged. | Trevor Timm, the executive director for the Freedom of the Press Foundation (FPF), told a magistrate court judge, "[President Donald] Trump's administration is moving to explicitly criminalize national security journalism, and if this prosecution is allowed to go forward, dozens of rep…

sputniknews (2020-09-14). The Cause of Julian Assange Is the Cause of Freedom — Free Assange Now. sputniknews.com Julian Assange is a victim of torture, grotesque character assassination, and shameful judicial procedures that amount to vengeful persecution, not a fair and proportional prosecution.

RT (2020-09-14). Assange extradition hearing adjourned after videolink failure, court fails to explain cause of problems. rt.com Hot on the heels of a coronavirus scare, Julian Assange's extradition hearing was postponed on Monday following a farcical videolink failure which meant the court could not hear the testimony of a prominent witness. | The court was hearing from witness Eric Lewis, an experienced US lawyer, when out of the blue it was interrupted by a Fox News video about WikiLeaks. The source of the unexpected interruption was never revealed and the court went into recess in a bid to resolve the technical difficulties. | Lewis was expected to give evidence that Assange would face a "flagrant denial of justice" if put on trial…

WSWS (2020-09-14). Australian government, Labor opposition silent on sadistic British show-trial of Julian Assange. wsws.org The Australian political and media establishment has largely responded to the vicious attacks on Assange's legal and democratic rights by pretending that they are not occurring.

_____ (2020-09-14). Unipolar Spin: Why Imperial Leftists Vilify Russia's Social Democracy. strategic-culture.org A lie told a thousand times becomes the truth. In reading countless articles from the Atlantic Council press outlets (NYT, WaPo, VICE News, et al), we take for granted that modern Russia is a right-wing regime controlled by an authoritarian personality bent on total domination. As a result, the debate then gets framed on why or whether its right for leftists to attack it as such, since this is used to further justify collective punishment (sanctions) against a whole people. | What escapes us is why creating propaganda that will result in collective punishment is in any way the business of self-declared leftists i…

WSWS (2020-09-14). COVID-19 outbreak at Virginia migrant detention center caused by repression of anti-police brutality protesters. wsws.org The outbreak at the Farmville detention center demonstrates the capitalist class's disdain for democratic rights and the lives of the entire population.

Walter Smolarek (2020-09-14). After 19 years of US occupation, Taliban-Afghan government talks underway. liberationnews.org Direct negotiations between representatives of the government of Afghanistan and the Taliban began today in Qatar with the goal of reaching a political settlement ending the war between the two sides. The negotiating teams are led by top officials — the Afghan government side led by intelligence head Masoom Stanikzai, and the Taliban delegation led …

Laura Flanders (2020-09-14). Resisting Authoritarianism One Co-Op at a Time. counterpunch.org A popularly-elected republic overturned by a reactionary armed revolt—there are myriad reasons why the painful history of the Spanish Civil War might pop into one's head at this particular moment. For one thing, that conflict reminds us just how fast dictatorship can kill democracy. Backed by Hitler and Mussolini, General Francisco Franco seized power in