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Tuesday, July 26, 2011

  • Eyewitness to Norwegian Massacre: Survivor Recalls Attack at Island Youth Camp

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    Norwegian police have widened their investigation into Friday’s mass killing after the alleged shooter, Anders Behring Breivik, told a court in Oslo on Monday that he had "two further cells" in his organization. During the hearing, Breivik accepted responsibility for the attacks but denied charges of terrorism. Norwegian media reports that if he is convicted of crimes against humanity, he could receive a 30-year sentence. At least 76 people were killed and 96 others wounded when Breivik allegedly set off a bomb outside government buildings in Oslo and then opened fire on a Labour Party summer camp for youth activists. We are joined from Oslo by Ali Esbati, one of the survivors of the shooting. He is an economist who was at the camp on Norway’s Utoya Island to give a workshop and escaped the shooting by diving into the water. "I saw a young girl, 18 or 19, who had been shot, and she kept repeating that 'If I die here, please remember that you're all fantastic, and keep up your struggle.’" [includes rush transcript]

  • Norway Attacks Reveal Growing Violent, Anti-Muslim Sentiment in Europe

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    Anders Behring Breivik, who has admitted to the mass shooting and bombing in Norway, has been described as an anti-Islamic, right-wing extremist who claimed to be acting in order to save Norway and Europe from "Marxist and Muslim colonization." To discuss the prevalence and legitimacy of these views, we speak with Kari Helene Partapuoli, the director of the Norwegian Center Against Racism. She says Breivik’s ideology was shaped in part by the Norwegian Defence League and the group Stop the Islamisation of Norway. “He didn’t just go on a shooting spree. He was also shaped by this political environment on the right wing,” says Partapuoli. [includes rush transcript]

  • Glenn Greenwald: Norway Attacks Expose U.S. Media’s Double Standard on "Terrorism"

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    Numerous news outlets and commentators initially blamed the attacks in Norway on Islamic militants. Rupert Murdoch’s British newspaper, The Sun, ran a front-page headline that read, "'Al-Qaeda' Massacre: Norway’s 9/11." In the United States, Murdoch’s Wall Street Journal also initially blamed "jihadists," reporting that "Norway is targeted for being true to Western norms." Meanwhile, on the Washington Post’s website, Jennifer Rubin wrote, "This is a sobering reminder for those who think it’s too expensive to wage a war against jihadists." To discuss the media coverage of the attacks, we’re joined by Glenn Greenwald, constitutional law attorney and political and legal blogger who has written about the media coverage of the attacks in Norway for Salon.com. “When it became apparent that Muslims were not involved and that, in reality, it was a right-wing nationalist with extremely anti-Muslim, strident anti-Muslim bigotry as part of his worldview, the word 'terrorism' almost completely disappeared from establishment media discourse. Instead, he began to be referred to as a 'madman' or an 'extremist,'" says Greenwald. “It really underscores, for me, the fact that this word 'terrorism,' that plays such a central role in our political discourse and our law, really has no objective meaning. It’s come to mean nothing more than Muslims who engage in violence." [includes rush transcript]

  • EXCLUSIVE: Fired Army Whistleblower Receives $970K for Exposing Halliburton No-Bid Contract in Iraq

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    Bunnatine "Bunny" Greenhouse, the former chief oversight official of contracts at the Army Corps of Engineers, has reached a $970,000 settlement six years after she was demoted for publicly criticizing a multi-billion-dollar, no-bid contract to Halliburton—the company formerly headed by then-Vice President Dick Cheney. Greenhouse had accused the Pentagon of unfairly awarding the contract to Halliburton subsidiary Kellogg Brown & Root. Testifying before Congress in June 2005, she called the contract the worst case of government abuse she had ever witnessed in her 20-year career. Just two months after that testimony, Greenhouse was demoted at the Pentagon, ostensibly for "poor performance." She had overseen government contracts for 20 years and had drawn high praise in her rise to become the senior civilian oversight official at the Army Corps of Engineers. With the help of the National Whistleblowers Center, Greenhouse filed a lawsuit challenging her demotion. In a Democracy Now! broadcast exclusive, Greenhouse announces that a settlement has been reached in what is seen as a major victory for government whistleblowers. We’re also joined by Greenhouse’s attorney, Michael Kohn, and by Stephen Kohn, executive director of the National Whistleblowers Center. [includes rush transcript]