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Thursday, April 29, 2004

  • Bush League Diplomacy: How the Neoconservatives Are Putting the World at Risk


    As President Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney meet with the 9/11 Commission at the White House, we speak with former CIA and State Department analyst Mel Goodman about how the Bush administration is using military force, not diplomacy, as America’s main tool of foreign policy. [includes rush transcript]

  • Brahimi’s Iraq Caretaker Gov’t Plan Opposed by Governing Council and Top Pentagon Officials


    As violence escalates in Iraq, we take a look at the United Nations special envoy to Iraq, Lakhdar Brahimi’s post June 30 plan for a UN-appointed Iraqi caretaker government until national elections scheduled for January 2005. We speak with Phyllis Bennis, fellow at the Institute for Policy Studies in Washington DC. [includes rush transcript]

  • Whistleblowers From Vietnam to 9/11: A Conversation with Daniel Ellsberg and Sibel Edmonds


    We speak with two whistleblowers from different eras about their experiences in speaking out: Sibel Edmonds, a former FBI translator hired to translate pre-9/11 intelligence, has said the U.S. had considerable evidence that al Qaida was planning to strike the U.S. with airplanes. The Bush administration is now trying to block her from testifying at a major 9/11 lawsuit. And Daniel Ellsberg, perhaps the most famous whistleblower in U.S. history who leaked the Pentagon Papers setting in motion actions that would eventually topple the Nixon presidency and end the Vietnam war. [includes rush transcript]

  • Bush’s Scope of Power At Stake in Supreme Court Enemy Combatants Cases


    The Supreme Court heard argument in two cases yesterday to determine whether the White House can detain US citizens indefinitely without ever having to press charges or allowing the citizen a chance to appeal their detainment in court. We hear excerpts of the oral arguments and speak with author and columnist Nat Hentoff.

    The cases involve two U.S. citizens who have been held as enemy combatants, Jose Padilla and Yaser Esam Hamdi. Padilla, a US-citizen born in Brooklyn, was detained at Chicago’s O’Hare airport nearly two years ago for allegedly plotting to set off a dirty bomb. Hamdi is an American-born Saudi who was turned over to U.S. forces by the Northern Alliance in Afghanistan in 2001.

    Both men have spent two years in military custody on a naval brig in South Carolina. They have never been charged with a crime and have been barred from seeing any evidence against them. They both had no access to a lawyer until recently when their attorneys were allowed to meet with them under supervision from Navy officials.

    The justices indicated at the hearing yesterday that a central concern of the court is whether President Bush acted with sufficient authorization from Congress to declare citizens captured at home or abroad as "enemy combatants" and then hold them indefinitely, without criminal charges, for interrogation.

    The justices yesterday seemed divided, with no clear majority view discernible from their questions and remarks.

    This is an excerpt of Deputy Solicitor General Paul Clement’s opening argument in the case of Yaser Hamdi before the Supreme Court yesterday.