Five Minutes Five Issues: MSNBC Warmongering, Bipartisan Peace, Pardon, Pulse Killings, Wrongful Convictions
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The Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity welcomes you to Five Minutes Five Issues.
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Hello, I am Adam Dick, a Ron Paul Institute senior fellow.
In a Truthdig editorial last week titled “Is MSNBC Now the Most Dangerous Warmonger Network?” Norman Solomon wrote about a Fairness and Accuracy in Reporting (FAIR) report that found that in the second half of last year TV station MSNBC both “did not run a single segment devoted specifically to Yemen” and “ran nearly 5,000 percent more segments that mentioned Russia than segments that mentioned Yemen.”
MSNBC’s routine mainly negative Russia coverage is part of what Solomon calls “continually piling up the dry tinder of hostility toward Russia” that “boosts the odds of a cataclysmic blowup between the world’s two nuclear superpowers.” Meanwhile, keeping quiet about the Yemen War’s catastrophic consequences and major United States government involvement, helps prevent Americans from demanding the US involvement end.
The Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) hosted on Tuesday foreign policy speeches by a Reps. Walter Jones (R-NC), a Republican, and Ro Khanna (D-CA), a Democrat, both members of the US House of Representatives Armed Services Committee.
Bipartisanship on foreign policy often comes down to advancing foreign intervention and war. But, Jones and Khanna’s presentations showed bipartisanship can advance peace. Comments by Jones, who is a member of the Ron Paul Institute Advisory Board, centered on the Afghanistan War, while Khanna’s comments centered on the Yemen War. Both representatives eloquently promoted foreign nonintervention and the importance of Congress debating and voting on whether the US uses military force overseas.
In the September 1, 2016 episode of Five Minutes Five Issues, I talked about Kristian Saucier’s then-recent sentencing for taking pictures on a submarine he had worked on in the US Navy. The pictures, Steven Nelson had reported at US News and World Report, “were deemed ‘confidential,’ the lowest level for classification.” I contrasted Saucer’s sentence with Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) Director James B. Comey announcing there would be no prosecution of Hillary Clinton despite Comey declaring she had been “extremely careless” in handling information with the highest classification levels.
On Friday, President Donald Trump issued a pardon to Saucier whose case, Nelson notes in a new Washington Examiner article, Trump mentioned often during the presidential campaign, saying Saucier “was ‘ruined’ for doing ‘nothing’ compared to Hillary Clinton.” Saucier had finished his prison time when the pardon was announced but still wore an ankle monitor. With the pardon, the monitor should be removed from Saucier’s ankle and the conviction removed from his record.
There has been much suggestion since the 2016 mass murder at the Pulse nightclub in Orlando, Florida that Omar Mateen was motivated by animus toward homosexuals. However, Glenn Greenwald and Murtaza Hussain wrote Monday at The Intercept that there is no apparent evidence to support this conclusion, including among new revelations arising from the trial of Mateen’s wife related to the mass murder.
Mateen’s statements and internet posts, write Greenwald and Hussain, “exclusively emphasized one cause: the ongoing killing of Muslim civilians by the U.S.” Further, they note, “[n]one of his statements explaining his motives and cause for the attack make any reference to targeting the gay community or any judgments about homosexuality.” In fact, Greenwald and Hussain declare, “[t]here is no evidence he even knew that Pulse was a gay club” when he targeted it. Mateen, who lived over 100 miles from Orlando, they write, also looked into other “soft targets” in the city that all had no particular connection to gay people.
Consider being wrongfully imprisoned for 23 years for murder and then, upon your release due to your conviction being reversed, receiving no compensation. That, reported Dean Reynolds last week at CBS, is what happened to Lamonte McIntyre who was released from a Kansas prison in October. Kansas, notes Reynolds, is “one of 18 states that offer wrongly convicted prisoners no compensation at all upon their release.”
That’s a wrap.
Transcripts of Five Minutes Five Issues episodes, including links to related information, are at the Ron Paul Institute blog.
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