Dear Democracy Now! Visitor: We are an independent, ad-free daily news program that serves millions of viewers and listeners each month. Our show is special because we make it our priority to go where the silence is. We put a spotlight on corporate and government abuses of power and lift up the stories of ordinary people working to make change in extraordinary times. We do all of this with just a fraction of the budget and staff of a commercial news show. We do it without ads, corporate sponsorship or government funding. How is this possible? Only with your support. If every visitor to this site in December gave just $10 we could cover our basic operating costs for 2015. Pretty exciting, right? Please do your part today. It takes just a couple of minutes to make sure that Democracy Now! is there for you and everybody else in 2015.

Your Donation: $

FBI Pressured To Slow Israel Spy Investigation

The Financial Times is reporting the White House and Attorney General John Ashcroft has * pressured the FBI not to prosecute senior officials* in connection with the investigation over who within the Pentagon leaked top-secret information to Israel and AIPAC, the American Israel Public Affairs Committee. One former intelligence official told the Financial Times "The White House is leaning on the FBI. Some people in the FBI are very upset, they think Ashcroft is playing politics with this."

Eight Die in Blast At Australian Embassy in Jakarta

In Indonesia, at least eight people have been killed and about * 100 injured in a bomb blast outside the Australian embassy* in Jakarta. Police said the blast was likely the result of a car bomb.

Bush Calls For Nat’l Intelligence Director

President Bush yesterday announced support for a * new national intelligence director* to solve the lack of coordination among agencies in the lead up to the attacks on Sept. 11. The 9/11 Commission had recommended creating a position where the new intelligence director would be a cabinet-level position and given full budget authority. Bush has proposed a scaled-back position where the director * controls about two-thirds of the overall intelligence budget*.

Iraq: Fallujah Bombing Continues; Anbar Official Kidnapped

In Iraq, one U.S. soldier was killed and two others injured in a roadside bomb in Baghdad. In Fallujah, the U.S have carried out another round of bombing killing 6 and injuring 23. In the province of Anbar, members of the Iraqi resistance kidnapped the deputy governor.

Aid Agencies Consider Pulling Out of Iraq

Meanwhile the Guardian is reporting that the remaining international aid agencies in Iraq are considering * pulling out of the country* after the kidnapping of four humanitarian workers, including two Italian women, from their headquarters in Baghdad.

600 Candlelight Peace Vigils Scheduled For Tonight

Tonight across the country over * 600 silent candlelight vigils* are scheduled to mark the death of the 1,000th soldier in Iraq. The vigils are being organized by * Win Without War* with backing from * United For Peace and Justice, * MoveOn, * Veterans For Peace* and other groups. Meanwhile last night in Iowa City critics of the war put on a life-size display of 1,000 footprints to symbolize the lives lost in Iraq.

Investigation Links Anti-Malaria Drug To Suicides

A new investigation by UPI and CNN has found that a controversial anti-malaria drug called Lariam might have * led to six Special Forces soldiers to commit suicide. The joint investigation uncovered what reporters described as a startling pattern of violence and suicide by the country’s most elite soldiers who used the drug. California Dianne Feinstein has called on the Pentagon to * reassess its use of the drug. The report also says Lariam might have played a role in three cases in 2002 when Special Forces soldiers at Fort Bragg murdered their wives and then committed suicide.

White House Pressures NBC Not To Interview Bush Biographer

The New York Times is reporting that the White House recently called the president of NBC News to * discourage the network* from broadcasting interviews with best selling biographer Kitty Kelley. Kelley has authored a new book on the Bush family that charges President Bush was a cocaine user and that he once used cocaine at Camp David while his father was president.

Stations Preempt '60 Minutes' Expose On Bush Military Service

In other TV news, viewers in multiple markets reported last night their local CBS affiliate opted not to broadcast 60 Minutes which aired a segment * raising new questions about President Bush’s military record* in the National Guard. In Lubbock, Texas the station aired a pre-recorded show for the St. Jude’s Children charity and held 60 Minutes until 1:35 in the morning. WTVR in Virginia reportedly aired a special 15-minute weather report at the top of the air that coincided with the portion of 60 Minutes that discussed Bush. WYOU in Pennsylvania claimed the station had transmitter problems during the hour. In Oklahoma, the local CBS affiliate had * planned to not air 60 Minutes until 3:15 in the morning* but the station caved in following a campaign by the * Progressive Alliance Foundation*.

GOP Elector Threatens To Vote Against Bush

In West Virginia, one of the state’s five Republican electors is * threatening to vote against President Bush in the Electoral College* if the president carries the state’s popular vote. Richie Robb, who is the mayor of South Charleston, said he would do so to protest what he believes are misguided policies of the current administration. He said, "I know that among some in my own party, what I’m discussing would be considered treasonous. But I’m not going to cheerlead us down the primrose path when I know we’re being led in the wrong direction."

Log Cabin Republicans To Not Endorse Bush

Meanwhile the Log Cabin Republicans have announced they will * not endorse President Bush* in the November election to protest his opposition to same-sex marriage. The group is the party’s largest gay and lesbian bloc.

California Joins Suit Against Diebold

In voting news, the state of California has * joined a lawsuit against Diebold* that alleges the electronic voting company sold the state equipment that could allow the elections to be manipulated by a hacker or disrupted by software bugs. The lawsuit was originally filed by electronic voting critic * Bev Harris*.

Same Financial Corporations Back Kerry & Bush

A new report from the * Center for Public Integrity* has found that both President Bush and John Kerry are relying on some of the * same major corporations to fund their campaigns*. Employees from four companies have given enough money to each candidate to be among the top largest contributors for each campaign. The companies are all financial corporations. They are Citigroup, the Goldman Sachs Group, Morgan Stanley Dean Witter & Co. as well as UBS AG Inc.

Third Judge Rules Abortion Ban Unconstitutional

For the third time this year a federal judge has ruled an attempt by * Congress to impose a federal ban* on some forms of abortion is unconstitutional. A Nebraska judge rejected the so-called * Partial Birth Abortion Act of 2003* because it lacks an exception for when a woman’s health is at risk.

Hurricane Ivan Devastates Grenada

In the Caribbean, * Hurricane Ivan*
has killed at least 15. In Grenada, the country’s prime minister told the BBC that the * island is 90 percent devastated. 125 mile an hour winds hit Grenada’s capital St. Georges. The category five storm is forecast to strike Jamaica on Friday and Cuba over the weekend. Hurricane Ivan is believed to be the worst hurricane to hit the Caribbean in over a decade. * Related Democracy Now! coverage__


Creative Commons License The original content of this program is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License. Please attribute legal copies of this work to democracynow.org. Some of the work(s) that this program incorporates, however, may be separately licensed. For further information or additional permissions, contact us.