Archive for the ‘civil liberties’ Category

Courts threaten freedom of Russian nature protector

February 18, 2021

Courts threaten freedom of Russian nature protector, 10 Jan 2021, 

An act of love — Beyond Nuclear International 

Lyubov Kudryashova loves nature. Now she may be jailed for defending it

By Jack Cohen-Joppa

In Russian, her name means love. And it’s true. Lyubov Kudryashova loves the broad valley of Russia’s Tobol River, where it meanders out of Kazakhstan into the Kurgan Oblast. Her grandfather is buried there, she was born there, and she’s raised three sons there. As far as she knows, her ancestors have always lived there.

There, below the southern Urals, frigid continental winters give way to spring floods that inundate a landscape of oxbow lakes, wetlands, forests and fields. The waters sustain a large aquifer that Russia recognizes as a strategic reserve of fresh water.

“We, native people of the land, are against a barbaric attitude towards nature,” she says. “But our voices are too low.”

Which is why the passion of this campaigning environmentalist and entrepreneur has been met with fabricated charges of encouraging terrorism via the internet. She’s now on trial in a military court in Yekaterinburg, six hours away from her small town.

But Lyubov Kudryashova will not be spurned. “My ecological activity is going to continue. Well, I guess till the day the unjust court could takes away my freedom.”

In 2017, the government awarded an operating license for borehole leeching of uranium to Dalur, a uranium mining subsidiary of the Russian state nuclear agency Rosatom. The license to tap the Dobrovolnoye deposit around the village of Zverinogolovskoye condemned the very farmland Kudryashova’s father managed when she would accompany him as a child.

Dalur has two other leaky in-situ uranium projects in the Kurgan.

Many Tobol Valley residents feared environmental disaster when they learned that hundreds of exploratory wells would be drilled through the aquifer into the mineral deposit lying beneath it, without any public environmental review. Borehole leeching would eventually involve drilling thousands of wells and the injection of a million tons of sulfuric acid over 20-30 years, then withdrawing the dissolved minerals and chemically extracting the uranium.

Several times, activists tried to start a referendum and demand an independent environmental review, but met only refusals from the local officials.

Last fall, environmentalists surveyed some of Dalur’s other boreholes in Kurgan and documented much higher radiation levels than permitted. Despite the concerns, construction began on an in-situ leaching pilot plant and the huge clay-lined “mud pits” needed to receive the massive volume of toxic, acidified sludge produced in the process.

Beginning in 2017, Kudryashova was involved in the legal case against the Russian Federation over its refusal to conduct an environmental impact assessment before awarding the license to develop the mine.

That year, she also co-founded the Public Monitoring Fund for the Environmental Condition and the Population Welfare with the regional branch of the Communist Party of the Russian Federation. One month later, a judge of the Kurgan Regional Court issued an order giving the Russian Federal Security Service (FSB) authority to wiretap her telephone.

The Fund publishes information on the environmental impact of Dalur’s mining activity. Kudryashova writes, “Shortly after the completion of the case in the Supreme Court of the Russian Federation and the registration of the environmental fund, a hidden judgment of another court was rendered that allowed the FSB to begin wiretapping my phone and, I believe, begin to look for fictitious crimes in order to stop my work.

“I guess money is more important than the radioactive contamination of land,” she observed.

So it was that on January 29, 2019, armed men led by an FSB captain broke into her family’s home and spent the day searching it. That summer the FSB got a local court to involuntarily commit Kudryashova to the Kurgan District Psychiatric Hospital for most of the month of July. She was kept from speaking with family or others outside without permission of the agency.

Then in March 2020, the FSB charged Kudryashova with 12 counts of “public justification of terrorism using the Internet” based on a specious forensic analysis of posts on the social network VKontakte, which, according to Kudryashova, never belonged to her page. The actual source of those posts remains unknown because the protocol and the DVD-R capturing those posts show evidence of fabrication and forgery.  And at the most recent session of her trial in late December, a CD-R the defense had presented to the court for evidence was found to have been erased by an FSB operative.

Prosecutors say she advocated for violent overthrow of the constitutional order by re-posting memes with such seditious phrases as, “The fate of Russia is determined by each of us, what you personally or I do, then Russia will. A correct position can only be revolutionary” and “If the nation is convinced that the ruling power in the state is directed not at the development of its cultural, economic and other needs, but, on the contrary, at trampling them, then it is not only the right, but also the duty of the nation to overthrow that power and establish one corresponding to the national interests of the people.”

Kudryashova writes, “Nonviolent ecological activism, in the understanding of the rulers of my country, is a crime. That’s why prisons are full of people who wanted to protect nature, but those who harmed it are free… Ecological crimes against present and future generations are not subject to the judgement of a military court.

“I’m 55 years old and my life is not as important as the preservation of nature. My duty and responsibility are to make a small contribution in a great cause — to stop violence against nature and people. The price of atomic energy is the life of future generations.”

Her trial is in the Central District Military Court of Yekaterinburg, where the next hearing is scheduled for 28-29 January, 2021. Agora International Human Rights Group and the Memorial civil rights society in Russia have provided an attorney and other support for Kudryashova.

Letters in support of Lyubov Kudryashova and seeking dismissal of the charges against her should be addressed to the chair of the court collegium examining the case, Judge Sergei Gladkih, st. Bazhova 85, Yekaterinburg, Russia 62005, or by email to opo.covs.svd@sudrf.ru. Refer to Case №: 2-42/2020, Lyubov Kudryashova.

Jack Cohen-Joppa is the co-editor of The Nuclear Resister, the co-founder of the eponymous organization and co-winner with Felice Cohen-Joppa of the 2020 Nuclear Free Future Award in the category of Education.

 

 

Legacy of Maralinga bomb tests -a reminder of need for safety in matters nuclear

November 28, 2020
Sixty years on, the Maralinga bomb tests remind us not to put security over safety, The Conversation    Liz Tynan, Senior Lecturer and Co-ordinator Research Student Academic Support, James Cook University September 26, 2016   It is September 27, 1956. At a dusty site called One Tree, in the northern reaches of the 3,200-square-kilometre Maralinga atomic weapons test range in outback South Australia, the winds have finally died down and the countdown begins……….
And so, at 5pm, Operation Buffalo begins. The 15-kilotonne atomic device, the same explosive strength as the weapon dropped on Hiroshima 11 years earlier (although totally different in design), is bolted to a 30-metre steel tower. The device is a plutonium warhead that will test Britain’s “Red Beard” tactical nuclear weapon.

The count reaches its finale – three… two… one… FLASH! – and all present turn their backs. When given the order to turn back again, they see an awesome, rising fireball. Then Maralinga’s first mushroom cloud begins to bloom over the plain – by October the following year, there will have been six more.

RAF and RAAF aircraft prepare to fly through the billowing cloud to gather samples. The cloud rises much higher than predicted and, despite the delay, the winds are still unsuitable for atmospheric nuclear testing. The radioactive cloud heads due east, towards populated areas on Australia’s east coast.

Power struggle

So began the most damaging chapter in the history of British nuclear weapons testing in Australia. The UK had carried out atomic tests in 1952 and 1956 at the Monte Bello Islands off Western Australia, and in 1953 at Emu Field north of Maralinga.
The British had requested and were granted a huge chunk of South Australia to create a “permanent” atomic weapons test site, after finding the conditions at Monte Bello and Emu Field too remote and unworkable. Australia’s then prime minister, Robert Menzies, was all too happy to oblige. Back in September 1950 in a phone call with his British counterpart, Clement Attlee, he had said yes to nuclear testing without even referring the issue to his cabinet……….
He was also exploring ways to power civilian Australia with atomic energy and – whisper it – even to buy an atomic bomb with an Australian flag on it (for more background, see here). While Australia had not been involved in developing either atomic weaponry or nuclear energy, she wanted in now. Menzies’ ambitions were such that he authorised offering more to the British than they requested.

While Australia was preparing to sign the Maralinga agreement, the supply minister, Howard Beale, wrote in a top-secret 1954 cabinet document:

Although [the] UK had intimated that she was prepared to meet the full costs, Australia proposed that the principles of apportioning the expenses of the trial should be agreed whereby the cost of Australian personnel engaged on the preparation of the site, and of materials and equipment which could be recovered after the tests, should fall to Australia’s account..…..
Britain’s nuclear and military elite trashed a swathe of Australia’s landscape and then, in the mid-1960s, promptly left. Britain carried out a total of 12 major weapons tests in Australia: three at Monte Bello, two at Emu Field and seven at Maralinga. The British also conducted hundreds of so-called “minor trials”, including the highly damaging Vixen B radiological experiments, which scattered long-lived plutonium over a large area at Maralinga.

The British carried out two clean-up operations – Operation Hercules in 1964 and Operation Brumby in 1967 – both of which made the contamination problems worse.

Legacy of damage

The damage done to Indigenous people in the vicinity of all three test sites is immeasurable and included displacement, injury and death. Service personnel from several countries, but particularly Britain and Australia, also suffered – not least because of their continuing fight for the slightest recognition of the dangers they faced. Many of the injuries and deaths allegedly caused by the British tests have not been formally linked to the operation, a source of ongoing distress for those involved.

The cost of the clean-up exceeded A$100 million in the late 1990s. Britain paid less than half, and only after protracted pressure and negotiations.

Decades later, we still don’t know the full extent of the effects suffered by service personnel and local communities. Despite years of legal wrangling, those communities’ suffering has never been properly recognised or compensated.

Why did Australia allow it to happen? The answer is that Britain asserted its nuclear colonialism just as an anglophile prime minister took power in Australia, and after the United States made nuclear weapons research collaboration with other nations illegal, barring further joint weapons development with the UK. …..Six decades later, those atomic weapons tests still cast their shadow across Australia’s landscape. They stand as testament to the dangers of government decisions made without close scrutiny, and as a reminder – at a time when leaders are once again preoccupied with international security – not to let it happen again.  https://theconversation.com/sixty-years-on-the-maralinga-bomb-tests-remind-us-not-to-put-security-over-safety-62441?fbclid=IwAR3-AXJA_-RZTlr1AW6qxgcFRPuOX5IIi163L75vLWXFyIOcZGKxbet5DDE

A tiny percentage of South Australian people coerced into the decision on nuclear waste dump

February 13, 2020

This is a decision which will affect all South Australians, not just a tiny percentage of people who have experienced four years of federal government promises and pressure to acquiesce.

the Minister failed to mention the main component of the project — long lived intermediate level waste from the Lucas Heights reactor  

Farmers and Traditional Owners decry SA nuclear more  https://www.eurekastreet.com.au/article/farmers-and-traditional-owners-decry-sa-nuclear-vote, Michele Madigan,20 November 2019 

    • On 12 November, Senator Canavan, federal Minister for Resources, took a question from the rather more junior Senator Alex Antic. The questioner wondered whether there was any recent progress on the federal nuclear facility proposed for Antic’s own state of South Australia.
The Minister was delighted to have the chance to announce that in the district area of Kimba the long awaited vote to host both a permanent facility for national low level radiactive waste and storage for intermediate level radioactive waste had concluded. The result: 61.17 per cent voted in favour.
Unsurprisingly, Canavan failed to mention that voting rights in the poll were severely restricted. The Barngarla Traditional Owners, native title holders of the area, were given no voice. Farmers whose land is actually closer to the site were also excluded as their properties are outside the allocated narrow boundary. 
 
Surprising however, even to four year battle-weary opponents of the scheme, was the fact that even on the second and third questions offered him by the willing SA Senator, the Minister failed to mention the main component of the project — long lived intermediate level waste from the Lucas Heights reactor  
 
With the total vote consisting of only 734 ballot papers, the yes vote represented just 452 people. My letter to the Advertiser of 11 November 2019 pointed out that on these figures we have .027 per cent of South Australians speaking for us all. In her response on 15 November, task force manager of the project, Sam Chard, wrote to the Advertiser that ‘the transport of waste will be conducted safely’ — a careful phrase. Unfortunately not even a federal government can prevent accidents from happening as they surely will — and already have.
South Australian filmmaker Kim Mavromatis’ just released video of an historic 1980 road accident involving nuclear waste from Lucas Heights graphically demonstrates the severe effects on former NSW police officers Bob Deards and Terry Clifford, who were tasked with cleanup. While there is no doubt that modern transport containers will be of better quality than in the past, the men’s warning is obvious: ‘The more they transport, the more accidents will happen.’
A later South Australian example was highlighted by the Advertiser‘s front-page headline of 9 December 1994: ‘Radioactive drum spills on SA road’. ‘A drum carrying low grade radioactive waste from New South Wales to Woomera has leaked contaminated material on to South Australian outback roads … Port Augusta police confirmed last night they were conducting an emergency clean-up of the site about 2km north of Port Augusta …’
Coober Pedy Aboriginal women Emily Austin and Lois Brown’s alarmed response was published a few days later: ‘When they were washing the truck after the leakage, they even took the water away. Why? if it was low-grade toxic waste. It must have been dangerous.’ Their warning: ‘Also that accident might have been low grade but what about the next time?’
Long-term Friends of the Earth environmentalist Dr Jim Green reiterates that nuclear transport accidents are commonplace. ‘Indeed the Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation (ANSTO) acknowledges that a small number of nuclear transport accidents occur each year. If the industry is expanded, there will inevitably be more transport accidents. A British government database documents an average of 19 nuclear transport incidents each year. Countless thousands of Australians who live along potential nuclear waste transport corridors are being ignored and disenfranchised by the Morrison Government ”.

Union spokespeople are under no illusion that accidents are inevitable and about who will be automatically called for the cleanup. As Jamie Newlyn, South Australian Branch Secretary of the Maritime Union of Australia, warns: ‘MUA members work in critical points of the logistics cycle and therefore the safe handling and above ground storage for decades is of great concern to the MUA … ‘

A day of high temperatures and strong winds last month did nothing to deter opponents of the federal government’s nuclear plans from the latest Port Augusta Rally. Terry Schmucker, who owns a farm in nearby Poochera, had no vote in the recent poll. He was scathing about the inability of the nuclear industry to guarantee project safety when ANSTO has been unable to prevent radioactive leaks even on site.

After the rally, Aboriginal Co-Chairs of the Australian Nuclear Free Alliance (ANFA), Dwayne Coulthard and Vicki Abdulla, led a strong contingent to present ANFA’s petition to the office of South Australia’s Minister for Energy and Mining, Dan van Holst Pellekaan: ‘South Australia has legislation that makes such waste facilities illegal: The Nuclear Waste Storage (Prohibition) Act 2000 … We ask you to act now and protect South Australia and its people from Minister Canavan’s site selection process that has caused so much distress to South Australian communities … ‘

No, Senator Canavan, South Australians don’t believe that 452 people in one small town have the right to agree to burden us with all the nation’s nuclear waste — and forever.

In fact the Barngarla Determination Aboriginal Corporation has just set another challenge. With the results of their own Australian Electoral Company internal members vote showing 83 No and zero Yes votes, the Barngala have issued a statement which reads in part: ‘BDAC has written to Minister Canavan advising him of the result. BDAC has requested that given the first people for the area unanimously have voted against the proposed facility that the Minister should immediately determine that there is not broad community support for the project. ‘

With the arrival of the voting papers for the proposed alternative Flinders Ranges site on 14 November, the intensity of the division between potential yes and no voters in the small towns and hinterlands of Hawker and Quorn seems to have hit fever pitch. The potential yes voters welcoming of a new ‘industry’ to the area seem to disregard the effect a nuclear facility will have on the major tourism industry and Adnyamathanha heritage; not to mention the threats to groundwaters in an area subject to seismic activity and floods.

This is a decision which will affect all South Australians, not just a tiny percentage of people who have experienced four years of federal government promises and pressure to acquiesce.

“The Guardian” co-opted by UK security services?

February 13, 2020

Getting Julian Assange   The Guardian also appears to have been engaged in a campaign against the WikiLeaks publisher Julian Assange, who had been a collaborator during the early WikiLeaks revelations in 2010.

It seems likely this was innuendo being fed to The Observer by an intelligence-linked individual to promote disinformation to undermine Assange.

In 2018, however, The Guardian’s attempted vilification of Assange was significantly stepped up. A new string of articles began on 18 May 2018 with one alleging Assange’s “long-standing relationship with RT”, the Russian state broadcaster. The series, which has been closely documented elsewhere, lasted for several months, consistently alleging with little or the most minimal circumstantial evidence that Assange had ties to Russia or the Kremlin.

How the UK Security Services neutralised the country’s leading liberal newspaper.   https://www.dailymaverick.co.za/article/2019-09-11-how-the-uk-security-services-neutralised-the-countrys-leading-liberal-newspaper/ By Matt Kennard and Mark Curtis• 11 September 2019, The Guardian, Britain’s leading liberal newspaper with a global reputation for independent and critical journalism, has been successfully targeted by security agencies to neutralise its adversarial reporting of the ‘security state’, according to newly released documents and evidence from former and current Guardian journalists.

The UK security services targeted The Guardian after the newspaper started publishing the contents of secret US government documents leaked by National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden in June 2013.

Snowden’s bombshell revelations continued for months and were the largest-ever leak of classified material covering the NSA and its UK equivalent, the Government Communications Headquarters. They revealed programmes of mass surveillance operated by both agencies.

According to minutes of meetings of the UK’s Defence and Security Media Advisory Committee, the revelations caused alarm in the British security services and Ministry of Defence. (more…)

TThe Court Of Public Opinion And The Blood-Curdling Untold Story – on Julian Assange

August 18, 2019

This prospect prompted the UN Working Group on Arbitrary Detention and 33 EU parliamentarians to issue strongly worded statements to both the UK and Ecuadorian governments in December last year, warning against facilitating the prosecution of a journalist, editor and publisher for “publishing the truth”. The statements demanded Assange’s “immediate release, together with his safe passage to a safe country”, and reminded the UK of its “binding” legal obligations to secure freedom for Assange.

A critical task for propagandists such as those waging a psychological war on Wilkileaks, then, is to feed audiences material that supports official narratives and exclude that which does not. Since its inception, the smear campaign against Julian Assange and Wikileaks has been remarkably concerted and consistent in that regard.

With the new year, however, news broke that the International Monetary Fund (IMF) had offered Ecuador a $10 billion bailout in return for handing Julian Assange over to the United States. This bounty came on top of earlier US pressures and inducements, reportedly including increased oil exportsmilitary co-operation and another $1.1 billion in IMF loans, with the US representative of the IMF instructing Ecuador that it must “resolve” its relationship with Julian Assange in order to receive the IMF money.

Australian Barrister Greg Barns has called it the blackmailing of a nation. News website 21st Century Wirecalled it “one of the biggest international bribery (or extortion) cases in history.”

While there is “not a single shred of evidence that any of [Wikileaks’] disclosures caused anyone harm”, writes journalist and author Nozomi Hayase, what Wikileaks did do in 2010 was expose thousands of previously unreported civilian deaths in Iraq and Afghanistan. These deaths included the nonchalant gunning down of children, journalists and their rescuers, and other “indiscriminate violence… torture, lies [and]bribery”, writes Chris Hedges. According to Pentagon Papers whistleblower Daniel Elsberg, the leaks exposed “a massive cover-up over a number of years by the American authorities”.

Julian in ‘critical danger’, new rules ‘torture’ – Assange mother *AUDIO*

The Psychology Of Getting Julian Assange, Part 2: The Court Of Public Opinion And The Blood-Curdling Untold Story, New Matilda, By Dr Lissa Johnson February 25, 2019  In her ongoing special investigation into the detention of Julian Assange, Dr Lissa Johnson turns to the art of smear, and how to corrupt a judicial system.

On Friday 14th February, the Editor in Chief of news website Consortium News, Joe Lauria, visited Sydney to host a ‘Politics in the Pub’ event: Whistleblowing, Wikileaks and the Future of Democracy. The event took place in anticipation of upcoming rallies to free Assange…….

. It is imperative that we pressure the Australian government to make sure its citizen, Julian Assange, is protected from the lawlessness of the American Empire.” (more…)

Australian investigative journalist Mark Davis explodes the myths around Julian Assange

August 18, 2019

CN LIVE! Mark Davis Wikileaks Revelations

While the Internet was meant to democratise the transmission of information we see a few giant technology companies, Google, Facebook, and Twitter, have near total control of what is seen and shared.

The situation is even worse in Australia with two or three media companies and the same technology giants having control. And the Government of Australia has granted them ever wider market access to extend their monopolies.

Slowly, instance by instance, the malicious and deceitful smears of Julian Assange’s character have been exposed for what they are; an effort to destroy trust in a system of anonymous leaking that will educate everyone.

WikiLeaks’ threat to the powerful was recognised and every effort was, and is, being made to criminalise anonymous leaking, which would be akin to criminalising Gutenberg’s printing press, but there is not much chance this criminalisation will succeed.

It’s time to bring Julian Assange home. Torturing and punishing him has never been legitimate and serves absolutely no purpose.

Media dead silent as Wikileaks insider explodes the myths around Julian Assange, Michael West, by Greg Bean — 16 August 2019 – It is the journalists from The Guardian and New York Times who should be in jail, not Julian Assange, said Mark Davis last week. The veteran Australian investigative journalist, who has been intimately involved in the Wikileaks drama, has turned the Assange narrative on its head. The smears are falling away. The mainstream media, which has so ruthlessly made Julian Assange a scapegoat, is silent in response.

 

Julian Assange – the untold story

May 12, 2019

This prospect prompted the UN Working Group on Arbitrary Detention and 33 EU parliamentarians to issue strongly worded statements to both the UK and Ecuadorian governments in December last year, warning against facilitating the prosecution of a journalist, editor and publisher for “publishing the truth”. The statements demanded Assange’s “immediate release, together with his safe passage to a safe country”, and reminded the UK of its “binding” legal obligations to secure freedom for Assange.

A critical task for propagandists such as those waging a psychological war on Wilkileaks, then, is to feed audiences material that supports official narratives and exclude that which does not. Since its inception, the smear campaign against Julian Assange and Wikileaks has been remarkably concerted and consistent in that regard.

With the new year, however, news broke that the International Monetary Fund (IMF) had offered Ecuador a $10 billion bailout in return for handing Julian Assange over to the United States. This bounty came on top of earlier US pressures and inducements, reportedly including increased oil exportsmilitary co-operation and another $1.1 billion in IMF loans, with the US representative of the IMF instructing Ecuador that it must “resolve” its relationship with Julian Assange in order to receive the IMF money.

Australian Barrister Greg Barns has called it the blackmailing of a nation. News website 21st Century Wirecalled it “one of the biggest international bribery (or extortion) cases in history.”

While there is “not a single shred of evidence that any of [Wikileaks’] disclosures caused anyone harm”, writes journalist and author Nozomi Hayase, what Wikileaks did do in 2010 was expose thousands of previously unreported civilian deaths in Iraq and Afghanistan. These deaths included the nonchalant gunning down of children, journalists and their rescuers, and other “indiscriminate violence… torture, lies [and]bribery”, writes Chris Hedges. According to Pentagon Papers whistleblower Daniel Elsberg, the leaks exposed “a massive cover-up over a number of years by the American authorities”.

Julian in ‘critical danger’, new rules ‘torture’ – Assange mother *AUDIO*

The Psychology Of Getting Julian Assange, Part 2: The Court Of Public Opinion And The Blood-Curdling Untold Story, New Matilda, By Dr Lissa Johnson February 25, 2019  In her ongoing special investigation into the detention of Julian Assange, Dr Lissa Johnson turns to the art of smear, and how to corrupt a judicial system.

On Friday 14th February, the Editor in Chief of news website Consortium News, Joe Lauria, visited Sydney to host a ‘Politics in the Pub’ event: Whistleblowing, Wikileaks and the Future of Democracy. The event took place in anticipation of upcoming rallies to free Assange…….

. It is imperative that we pressure the Australian government to make sure its citizen, Julian Assange, is protected from the lawlessness of the American Empire.”

Opening the Politics in the Pub evening, Lauria described the fight to defend Julian Asssange as an “historic press freedom case. This is how I became more involved”.

Lauria has been hosting weekly Unity4J online vigils in support of Julian Assange since December last year, taking over from Suzie Dawson, as part of the Unity4J platform. Guests have included Pentagon Papers whistleblower Daniel Elsberg, CIA Whistleblower John KiriakouChris HedgesJohn Pilger and many others.

Joe Lauria’s career in journalism has spanned mainstream and independent media, including 25 years as a UN correspondent, where he covered every major world crisis that came before the UN. During his career, Lauria has experienced journalistic suppression and enforcement of official narratives first-hand, including leading up to the Iraq war. As a result, he is particularly well-placed to host discussions on the importance of Wikileaks and Julian Assange………

Lauria went on to describe some of the specific acts of suppression he himself had experienced during his own career. They included being fired after reporting on dissent within the UN in the lead-up to the Iraq War; burial of the fact that 130 nations at the UN recognised Palestine during a vote on Palestine’s status; and suppression of a story “on a declassified Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) document that predicted the rise of ISIS back in 2012 but was ignored in Washington ……..

Suppressed. For the good of the country.

“The omission of such news day after day in newspapers and on television,” said Lauria, “over the decades… gives the American people a distorted view of their country, an almost cartoonish sense of America’s supposed morality in international affairs”.

On the importance of Wikileaks in such a media landscape, during an interview with Chris Hedges, who also lost his mainstream career after critiquing the Iraq War, Lauria said, “We’ve seen over the years… the decline of American journalism… this taking of official statements and positions, and just reporting them without question.”

Hedges, formerly a foreign correspondent and Middle East bureau chief for the New York Times, added during an online vigil for Assange, “I still have colleagues that are there [at the New York Times], and they are quite blunt about the fact that investigative journalism into the inner workings of power has been frozen completely, because of wholesale surveillance. Government officials, because they know they’re monitored, journalists, because they know they’re monitored, can no longer shine a light into the inner workings of power.

“The only mechanism left by which we can understand, frankly, the crimes that are being committed by the powerful, by the elites, are through leaks… Take that mechanism away and tyranny, corruption runs rampant.”

What you don’t know can hurt you

When Lauria took over the Unity4J vigils for Assange in December last year, it was an eventful time in the fight to defend Julian Assange.

As 2018 drew to a close, fears mounted that Assange’s extradition to the US may be imminent. Increasingly strict protocols had been imposed upon his presence in the Ecuadorian embassy, possibly creating pretexts for his expulsion, the Ecuadorian ambassador and foreign minister had advised Assange to leave the embassy and hand himself over to British authorities, and six leading Democrats had written a letter to Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, recommending that he urge Ecuador to “resolve” the “situation” with Julian Assange.

Should efforts to expel Assange from the embassy succeed, he is expected to be extradited to the United States to face charges for his publishing activities.

This prospect prompted the UN Working Group on Arbitrary Detention and 33 EU parliamentarians to issue strongly worded statements to both the UK and Ecuadorian governments in December last year, warning against facilitating the prosecution of a journalist, editor and publisher for “publishing the truth”. The statements demanded Assange’s “immediate release, together with his safe passage to a safe country”, and reminded the UK of its “binding” legal obligations to secure freedom for Assange.

With the new year, however, news broke that the International Monetary Fund (IMF) had offered Ecuador a $10 billion bailout in return for handing Julian Assange over to the United States. This bounty came on top of earlier US pressures and inducements, reportedly including increased oil exportsmilitary co-operation and another $1.1 billion in IMF loans, with the US representative of the IMF instructing Ecuador that it must “resolve” its relationship with Julian Assange in order to receive the IMF money.

Australian Barrister Greg Barns has called it the blackmailing of a nation. News website 21st Century Wirecalled it “one of the biggest international bribery (or extortion) cases in history.”

The mainstream media called it no big deal. Like the facts that got in the way of the Iraq war, details such as a $10 billion IMF bounty on Julian Assange’s head have been placed out of bounds for Western publics, and omitted from the mainstream narrative on Wikileaks and Julian Assange.

In fact, from the outset, the official narrative on Assange and Wikileaks has been woven as much from omission as from smear.

On the subject of smear, speaking at the Sydney rally to free Assange last year, John Pilger said, “I know Julian well. I regard him as a close friend: a person of extraordinary resilience and courage. I have watched a tsunami of lies and smear engulf him, endlessly, vindictively, perfidiously, and I know why they smear him.

“In 2008, a plan to destroy both Wikileaks and Julian was laid out in a secret document dated 8th of March 2008. The authors were the Cyber Counter-intelligence Assessment Branch of the US Defense Department (DoD). They described in detail how important it was to destroy, and I quote, ‘the feeling of trust’ that is Wikileaks’ ‘centre of gravity’”.

In the decade that followed, as discussed in Part 1, true to the modus operandi of counterintelligence, which seeks to “leverage insights” into adversary “vulnerabilities”, every major vulnerability in the human reality-processing system has been leveraged and exploited in order to smear Julian Assange and Wikileaks.

In this case, the adversary in the US crosshairs has been not only Julian Assange and Wikileaks, but the global populations that Wikileaks seeks to inform. It is our own vulnerabilities – the vulnerabilities in the information processing systems of all human beings – that have been leveraged and exploited in order to undermine and discredit Wikileaks……..

As Professor Piers Robinson, chair in Politics, Society and Political Journalism at the University of Sheffield, has said in an interview on modern day propaganda, “omission – what is not spoken about – is one of the biggest parts of propaganda and manipulating people’s opinions”.

A critical task for propagandists such as those waging a psychological war on Wilkileaks, then, is to feed audiences material that supports official narratives and exclude that which does not. Since its inception, the smear campaign against Julian Assange and Wikileaks has been remarkably concerted and consistent in that regard.

The material omitted in Assange’s case has been not only that which factually undermines anointed narratives (such as narratives on the Swedish investigation and Russiagate), but material that gives Western publics cause to care what happens to Julian Assange.

Should such material be admitted to the official story, the possibility emerges that publics may identify with Assange. He may be viewed as a protagonist with a plight, worthy of our concern. Which is bad for smear campaigns. Protagonists are difficult to smear.

The fact is, however, that whether or not you care what happens to Julian Assange, there are very important reasons to care what happens to Julian Assange. Which is why mainstream narratives on Assange have worked hard to see to it that we don’t. Care, that is.

Blood-curdling

Once upon a time the official narrative was that Assange had brought his asylum upon himself, by evading Swedish questioning over sexual assault allegations. He doesn’t deserve your sympathy was the subtext. He only has himself to blame.

Once the Swedish case had been closed in 2017, the ‘evading Swedish justice’ narrative gave way to the ‘evading British Justice’ narrative. Julian Assange was now said to be ‘holed up’ in the Ecuadorian Embassy to escape a British arrest warrant over the pseudo-legal concoction of a defunct bail infringement attached to the closed Swedish investigation.

The underlying implication remained: that Julian Assange had brought his imprisonment upon himself. In this narrative he was still a fugitive from justice, not a publisher seeking asylum from US persecution.

Despite their factual inaccuracy, these tales survived in many people’s minds for years, thanks largely to the concerted campaign of omission, as I shall explain.

However, late last year the Department of Justice (DoJ) accidentally confirmed what Wikileaks had been saying since at least 2012: that secret charges await Julian Assange in the United States should he leave the Ecuadorian embassy, most likely for 2010 publications regarding the Iraq and Afghanistan wars.

Accordingly, the ‘fugitive from British justice’ narrative has now been dropped. It is out in the open that the US is gunning for Julian Assange, and gunning hard. Mike Pompeo admitted as much in his first speech as CIA director last year.

For its part, Ecuador is doing its best to force Assange from the Ecuadorian Embassy, having cut him off from the outside world since March 2018, imposing effective solitary confinement, in an effort to “break him psychologically” according to former Ecuadorian President Raffael Correa.

The conditions being imposed upon Assange are “basically the kind of torture techniques [used]in the black sites, Gitmo, and prisons in Iraq” says former NSA technical director William Binney. “It’s a technique that psychologists developed with the CIA as to how to treat people to make them feel very isolated, and make them psychologically turn on themselves.”

Assange’s physical as well as mental health, as reported in the British Medical Journal Opinion, is under sustained attack, amounting to “cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment”, possibly endangering his life according to the UN.

His treatment has been denounced not only by the UN Working Group on Arbitrary Detention and EU parliamentarians , but by HRWAmnesty International, the Committee to Protect Journalists and the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU). Assange’s mother, Christine Assange, has called his treatment “a slow and cruel assassination”.

Still, the official narratives incite Western publics not to care. Although no-one is denying that the US is out to get Julian Assange now, something else is being omitted to keep public care and concern at bay.

Yes, there is Russiagate, causing anger over perceived ‘collusion’, which I shall examine as collective delusion in Part 4. But Russiagate itself relies on a critical omission, without which its claims to ‘defending democracy’ would unravel.

What omission? What is being kept out of the official narrative now?

An omission central to keeping publics disengaged from Julian Assange (and engaged with Russiagate) concerns the wider legal implications should Assange be extradited and prosecuted in the United States.

What wider legal implications?

If US prosecution does take place, Assange is expected to be tried either as a conspirator in procuring leaks, or under the draconian Espionage Act of 1917, passed during WWI in the context of the First Red Scare, when “people were literally being thrown in prison just for writing letters to the editor”, writes the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU).

So although the Trump administration appears game to blaze this authoritarian legal trail, previous US administrations have stopped short, for fear of criminalising journalism.

The Obama DoJ, for instance, as keen as any to shut down Wikileaks, looked closely at prosecuting Assange for publishing classified documents in this way, but concluded that doing so was impossiblewithout opening other publishers, such as The New York Times, to the same fate. The Obama administration called this their ‘New York Times problem’.

Former chief counsel for The New York Times, James Goodale, of Pentagon Papers famenow adjunct professor at Fordham Law School, describes the legal implications of prosecuting Julian Assange as “blood-curdling”.

Goodale told the Columbia Journalism Review that “the biggest challenge to the press today is the threatened prosecution of WikiLeaks, and it’s absolutely frightening… If you go after WikiLeaks criminally, you go after the Times. That’s the criminalization of the whole process.”

The current deputy general counsel for The New York Times made much the same point when speaking to a group of judges in July last year. He said that “the prosecution of [Assange] would be a very, very bad precedent for publishers… From everything I know, he’s sort of in a classic publisher’s position and I think the law would have a very hard time drawing a distinction between The New York Times and WikiLeaks.”

Similarly, executive Director of Human Rights Watch (HRW) Kenneth Roth tweeted in 2018, “Deeply troubling if the Trump administration, which has shown little regard for media freedom, would charge Assange for receiving from a government official and publishing classified information — exactly what journalists do all the time.”

In short, should Assange be prosecuted in this cross-border, extra-territorial, precedent-setting way, the legal upshot would be that anyone, anywhere in the world, could be arrested for publishing material that angered US elites, no matter how accurate or factual.

n spite of this, or because of it, in 2017 as Trump’s Attorney General, Jeff Sessions declared Assange’s arrest a “priority”. When asked about the implications for journalism in general, Sessions declined to rule out prosecuting other media outlets in Wikileaks’ wake.

Former judge and attorney Bill Blum writes, “No publication would be safe from the administration’s vengeance and overreach. Small independent news organizations — think, Truthdig, The Intercept, The Nation and others on the left — would be especially vulnerable.”

Just to make US intentions crystal clear, in his first speech as CIA director, Mike Pompeo vowed to go after Wikileaks’ “free speech values”, describing the publisher as a “hostile non-state intelligence service”. Pompeo further confirmed that the US is “working to take down” Wikileaks, lumping it together with Al Qaeda.

Pompeo added that his CIA’s “enemies” included not only Wikileaks but “those who grant a platform” to (factual) leaked material. In other words, publishers: public interest journalists, independent media, websites, bloggers. The groups in Pompeo’s sights “may be small” Pompeo said, but they pose a “new threat… and I’m confident this administration will pursue them with great vigour.”

And pursue them the administration has, with the help of a bipartisan, borderless, military-intelligence-media complex. Orwellian Ministry of Truth censorship and smear-campaign cut-outs such as PropOrNothave been deployed, for instance, along with the Institute for Statecraft’s “political smear unit” Integrity Initiative and, more recently, the censorship tool NewsGuard, a browser plugin to filter out non-mainstream news.

Newsguard is working to make its ranking system involuntary for all internet use in the United States, and has partnered with Microsoft, which is reportedly planning to integrate NewsGuard into all its products.

The censorship tool’s “advisory board reads like the fellowships list of a neocon think tank”, writes self-described rogue journalist Caitlyn Johnstone. One of its board members, for instance, a former State Department Under Secretary for Public Diplomacy, can be seen here advocating the use of propaganda against domestic populations. (The video  [on original] is truly telling if you watch it to 1m 50s).

NewsGuard has emerged against a political backdrop in which top officials for Google, Facebook and Twitter appeared before a Senate Intelligence Committee in 2017, at which they were admonished to “act now on the social media battlefield to quell information rebellions”. The tech leaders were advised to develop “mission statements” on preventing internet users from “fomenting discord” online.

US Government investigators even asked Facebook and Twitter to hand over profile information, possibly including names, phone numbers and email addresses, of social media users posting “divisive” content.

We want names.

Yes this really happened,” writes Caitlin Johnstone………….

other independent and dissenting voices and “platforms”, to use Pompeo’s words, no matter how “small” will be missing in the future should the US win its legal and psychological war on Wikileaks.

The psychological end-game of that war is not simply shutting down Wikileaks. It is gaining public consent to treat public interest journalism as public enemy number one. Russiagate, with its army of online enforcers, functions as a psychological tool in that war to brand independent voices enemy combatants.

As Chris Hedges warns, the mission is to “criminalize any journalistic oversight or investigation of the corporate state” and “turn leaks and whistleblowing into treason”. He notes that “the persecution of Assange is part of a broad assault against anti-capitalist and anti-imperialist news organizations [making]journalists, writers, dissidents and intellectuals…prime targets.”

Political observer and wordsmith CJ Hopkins of Consent Factory counsels, “strap yourself in. What is coming is going to make COINTELPRO look like the work of some amateur meme-freak. The neoliberal corporate media, psy-ops like Integrity Initiative, Internet-censoring apps like NewsGuard, ShareBlue and other David Brock outfits, and a legion of mass hysteria generators will be relentlessly barraging our brains with absurdity, disinformation, and just outright lies (as will their counterparts on the Right, of course, in case you thought that they were any alternative). It’s going to get extremely zany.”

Peaceniks, cat food, and a toilet bowl at Gitmo

If the impending criminalisation of journalism is being omitted from the mainstream narrative on Julian Assange and Wikileaks, what else has been omitted along the way? What evidence has been excluded from the court of public opinion in order to weave a guilty narrative around Julian Assange, cast him as the antagonist, prevent us from caring, and pave the psychological way for the war on independent media unfolding now?………

While there is “not a single shred of evidence that any of [Wikileaks’] disclosures caused anyone harm”, writes journalist and author Nozomi Hayase, what Wikileaks did do in 2010 was expose thousands of previously unreported civilian deaths in Iraq and Afghanistan. These deaths included the nonchalant gunning down of children, journalists and their rescuers, and other “indiscriminate violence… torture, lies [and]bribery”, writes Chris Hedges. According to Pentagon Papers whistleblower Daniel Elsberg, the leaks exposed “a massive cover-up over a number of years by the American authorities”.

Someone had to pay. And it certainly wasn’t going to be the war criminals.

After these releases the “terrorist” smears against Assange began to flow. Vice President Joe Biden called him a “high tech terrorist” despite saying a few days earlier that the Iraq and Afghanistan releases had done “no substantive damage” other than to be “embarrassing”.

Now, all these years of embarrassing releases later, the secret charges that have surfaced against Assange are in the same location as the 2010 Grand Jury: the Eastern District of Virginia. Accordingly, the charges are expected to relate to the 2010 exposures of US war crimes, not to the 2016 US election.

The Eastern District of Virginia is known as the ‘espionage court’ according to CIA torture whistleblower John Kiriakou. It is “the home of the CIA, of the Pentagon, and of almost every intelligence-related private contractor in the Washington area” Kirakou explains. No national security defendant has ever won a case there, he says.

Should Assange be extradited to face prosecution in the US, the UN Working Group on Arbitrary Detention has ruled that his risk of “political persecution and cruel, inhumane and degrading treatment” and “physical harm” is “well founded”………..

back in the court of public opinion, after a decade of narrative by omission during trial by media, Julian Assange is on the verge of ending up in US hands. Should that come to pass, “The CIA and the FBI are both going to be on that plane”, warns John Kiriakou. “They will bring him back to the United States in chains.”

The movement to free Assange, as Joe Lauria stressed during his Sydney visit, is of historic significance. At this juncture, expressing public opposition to treating public interest journalism as public enemy number one may be one of the few things standing between free speech and a toilet bowl at Gitmo.

Next, before delving in earnest into the arsenal of psychological tactics deployed in the psychological war on Wikileaks, I will explore the phenomenon whereby ostensibly progressive, liberal Russiagate #Resistance™ warriors have fallen in line behind the Trump administration as it wages its repressive crackdown on journalism via Wikileaks, an authoritarian dream notes Glenn Greenwald.

In the process, I will ask why anyone – left, right or indifferent – would place their faith in US intelligence agencies, even as some of the same individuals who led us into the Iraq war lead the way on Russiagate and Wikileaks, crying “trust us”.

READ THE WHOLE ASSANGE SERIES
PART 1: The Psychology Of Getting Julian Assange: What’s Torture Got To Do With It?
PART 2: The Psychology Of Getting Julian Assange: The Court Of Public Opinion And The Blood-Curdling Untold Story
PART 3: The Psychology of Getting Julian Assange – Wikileaks and Russiagate: Trust Us, We’re The CIA
PART 4: The Psychology Of Getting Julian Assange: Why Even Some Lefties Want To See Him Hang
PART 5: The Psychology Of Getting Julian Assange: War Propaganda 101      https://newmatilda.com/2019/02/25/psychology-getting-julian-assange-part-2-court-public-opinion-blood-curdling-untold-story/

 

 

How America tested ionising radiation on its citizens, during the Cold War.

March 31, 2018

Cold War radiation testing in U.S. widespread, author claims Three members of Congress are demanding answers after a St. Louis scholar’s new book revealed details of how the U.S. government sprayed, injected and fed radiation and other dangerous materials to countless people in secret Cold War-era testing.

The health ramifications of the tests are unknown. Lisa Martino-Taylor, an associate professor of sociology at St. Louis Community College who wrote “Behind the Fog: How the U.S. Cold War Radiological Weapons Program Exposed Innocent Americans,” acknowledged that tracing diseases like cancer to specific causes is difficult.

 But three congressmen who represent areas where testing occurred — Democrats William Lacy Clay of Missouri, Brad Sherman of California and Jim Cooper of Tennessee — said they were outraged by the revelations.

Martino-Taylor used Freedom of Information Act requests to obtain previously unreleased documents, including army records. She also reviewed already public records and published articles. In an interview, she said she found that a small group of researchers, aided by leading academic institutions, worked to develop radiological weapons and later “combination weapons” using radioactive materials along with chemical or biological weapons.

Her book, published in August, was a follow-up to her 2012 dissertation that found the government conducted secret testing of zinc cadmium sulfide in a poor area of St. Louis in the 1950s and 1960s. The book focuses on the mid-1940s to the mid-1960s.

An army spokeswoman declined comment, but Martino-Taylor’s 2012 report on testing in St. Louis was troubling enough to spur an army investigation. The investigation found no evidence that the St. Louis testing posed a health threat.

Martino-Taylor said the offensive radiological weapons program was a top priority for the government. Unknowing people at places across the U.S. as well as parts of England and Canada were subjected to potentially deadly material through open-air spraying, ingestion and injection, Martino-Taylor said.

“They targeted the most vulnerable in society in most cases,” Martino-Taylor said. “They targeted children. They targeted pregnant women in Nashville. People who were ill in hospitals. They targeted wards of the state. And they targeted minority populations.”

The tests in Nashville in the late 1940s involved giving 820 poor and pregnant white women a mixture during their first pre-natal visit that included radioactive iron, Martino-Taylor said. The women were chosen without their knowledge. Blood tests were performed to determine how much radioactive iron had been absorbed by the mother, and the babies’ blood was tested at birth. Similar tests were performed in Chicago and San Francisco, Martino-Taylor said.

Cooper’s office plans to seek more information from the Army Legislative Liaison, said spokesman Chris Carroll.

“We are asking for details on the Pentagon’s role, along with any cooperation by research institutions and other organizations,” Carroll said. “These revelations are shocking, disturbing and painful.”

In California, investigators created a radiation field inside a building at North Hollywood High School during a weekend in the fall of 1961, Martino-Taylor said. Similar testing was performed at the University of California, Los Angeles and at a Los Angeles Police Department building.

Sherman said he wants a survey of people who graduated from the school around the time of the testing to see if there was a higher incidence of illness, including cancer. He also said he will seek more information from the Department of Energy.

“What an incredibly stupid, reckless thing to do,” said Sherman, whose district includes North Hollywood High School.

Among those who recall the testing is Mary Helen Brindell, 73. She was playing baseball in a St. Louis street in the mid-1950s when a squadron of green planes flew so low overhead that she could see the face of the lead pilot. Suddenly, the children were covered in a fine powdery substance that stuck to skin moistened by summer sweat.

Brindell has suffered from breast, thyroid, skin and uterine cancers. Her sister died of a rare form of esophageal cancer.

“I just want an explanation from the government,” Brindell said. “Why would you do that to people?”

Clay said he was angered that Americans were used as “guinea pigs” for research.

“I join with my colleagues to demand the whole truth about this testing and I will reach out to my Missouri Delegation friends on the House Armed Services Committee for their help as well,” Clay said in a statement.

St. Louis leaders were told at the time that the government was testing a smoke screen that could shield the city from aerial observation in case of Soviet attack. Evidence now shows radioactive material, not just zinc cadmium sulfide, was part of that spraying, Martino-Taylor said.

Doris Spates, 62, was born in 1955 on the 11th floor of the Pruitt-Igoe low-income high-rise where the army sprayed material from the roof. Her father died suddenly three months after her birth. Four of her 11 siblings died from cancer at relatively young ages. She survived cervical cancer and suffers from skin and breathing problems.

“It makes me angry,” Spates said. “It is wrong to do something like that to people who don’t have any knowledge of it.”

According to Martino-Taylor, other testing in Chicago; Berkeley, California; Rochester, New York; and Oak Ridge, Tennessee, involved injecting people with plutonium-239.

She said her book shines a light on the team of mostly young scientists tasked with developing radiological weapons. They worked in a closed world with virtually no input from anyone “who could say, ‘This isn’t right,’ or put some sort of moral compass on it,” she said.

She hopes her book prompts more people to investigate.

“We haven’t gotten any answers so far,” Martino-Taylor said. “I think there’s a lot more to find out.”

Secret plutonium abuse of an Australian child, by Argonne National Laboratory

August 21, 2017

Paul Langley,  https://www.facebook.com/paul.langley.9822/posts/10213752429593121CAL-2, 14 Aug 17, 5 yr-old Simon Shaw and his mum. Simon was flown from Australia to the US on the pretext of medical treatment for his bone cancer. Instead, he was secretly injected with plutonium to see what would happen. His urine was measured, and he was flown back to Australia.

Though his bodily fluids remained radioactive, Australian medical staff were not informed. No benefit was imparted to Simon by this alleged “medical treatment” and he died of his disease after suffering a trip across the world and back at the behest of the USA despite his painful condition. The USA merely wanted a plutonium test subject. They called him CAL-2. And did their deed under the cover of phony medicine.

“Congress of the United States, House of Representatives, Washington, DC 20515-2107, Edward J. Markey, 7th District, Massachusetts Committees, [word deleted] and Commerce, Chairman Subcommittee on Telecommunications and Finance, Natural Resources, Commission on Security and Cooperation in Europe] MEMORANDUM To: Congressman Edward J. Markey From: Staff Subject: The Plutonium Papers Date: 4/20/94

Staff Memo on Plutonium Papers

The medical file for Cal-2 also contains correspondence seeking follow-up from Argonne National Laboratory in the 1980s. Cal-2 was an Australian boy, not quite five years old, who was flown to the U.S. in 1946 for treatment of bone cancer. During his hospitalization in San Francisco, he was chosen as a subject for plutonium injection. He returned to Australia, where he died less than one year later.

Document 700474 is a letter from Dr. Stebbings to an official at the Institute of Public Health in Sydney, Australia, in an attempt to reach the family of Cal-2. This letter reports that the child was “injected with a long-lived alpha-emitting radionuclide.” Document 700471 is a letter from Dr. Stebbings to New South Wales, Australia (names and town deleted), inquiring about recollections of the boy’s hospitalization in 1946. The letter notes that, “those events have become rather important in some official circles here,” but provides few details to the family.

A hand-written note on the letter reports no response through October 8, 1987. Considering the history on the lack of informed consent with these experiments, it is surprising that the letters to Australia failed to mention the word “plutonium.”

The Australian news media has since identified Cal-2 as Simeon Shaw, the son of a wool buyer in New South Wales, and information on the injection created an international incident. The information in the medical file does indicate that at a time when Secretary Herrington told you that no follow-up would be conducted on living subjects, the Department of Energy was desperately interested in conducting follow-up on a deceased Australian patient.

In an effort to determine the full extent of follow-up by the Department after 1986, your staff has requested, through the Department’s office of congressional affairs, the opportunity to speak with Dr. Stebbings, Dr. Robertson, and any other officials who may have been involved in the follow-up. So far, that request has been unsuccessful. It remains an open question as to what was the full extent of follow-up performed in the 1980s, and whether the efforts then would facilitate any further follow-up on subjects now. It seems appropriate for the Interagency Working Group to address these questions as its efforts continue.”

Source: National Security Archives, George Washington Universityhttp://www.gwu.edu/…/…/mstreet/commeet/meet1/brief1/br1n.txt

See also ACHRE Final Report.

NO MORE DUAL USE ABUSE OF AUSTRALIANS MR PRESIDENT. STOP FUNDING SYKES AND FLINDERS UNIVERSITY IN THE DOE QUEST FOR CHEAP CLEANUP OF URANIUM CONTAMINATED SITES.

Mr. President, you are wrong if you think you can do the same again re hormesis funding in Australia as the USA did with CAL-2. We have not forgotten and do not trust you or your paid agents in Australian universities such as Flinders.

Australian government manouvres to shut down environmental critics

January 4, 2016

given the urgency of the environmental crisis, an increasing number of Australians recognise that we need environmental groups who do more than plant trees.

In the run to this year’s Paris climate talks and next year’s federal election, we need laws that encourage full-blooded political participation.


Government inquiry takes aim at green charities that ‘get political
The Conversation, Peter BurdonSenior lecturer at University of Adelaide 16 Apr 15  The almost 600 environmental groups that hold tax-deductibility status in Australia are being scrutinised by a federal government inquiry, with reports that more than 100 of them face being struck off the list.

Some, like the state and territory Conservation Councils and Environmental Defenders Offices, are still reeling from cuts to their programs and core funding. Others, such as Greenpeace, The Wilderness Society, and Friends of the Earth, could lose access to the tax-deductible donations that help sustain their work.

Encouraging donations Deductible gift-recipient status allows eligible organisations, such as those on the environmental register, to receive tax-deductible gifts and contributions. Consistent with similar schemes in the United States and Europe, the environmental register was established as an incentive for citizens and corporations to fund organisations that are active in the public sphere, while also feeding into the logic of small government and shifting the burden of catering for social needs back onto the community.

In Australia, an environmental organisation is defined as a body or society whose primary purpose is to protect the environment or conduct education and research.

Importantly, however, in 2010 the High Court ruled that groups with tax-deductible status also have the right to engage in political debate and advocacy. The judgement described the freedom to speak out on political issues as “indispensable” for “representative and responsible government”.

Moreover, the court pointed out that there is no general rule that excludes “political objects” from charitable purposes. Instead, the key consideration is whether the organisation “contributes to the public welfare”. The ruling has been used as a precedent both in Australia and overseas, such as when Greenpeace won a favourable decision from the New Zealand Supreme Court last year.

Why is Australia holding the inquiry? (more…)