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tv   Democracy Now  LINKTV  July 19, 2019 4:00pm-5:01pm PDT

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07/19/19 07/19/19 [captioning made possible by democracy now!] amy: from new york, this is democracy now! >> send her back! send her back! send her back! trusts president trump to distance himself from the racist chant of "send her back" about congresssswoman ilhan omor seconds tosed for 13 ring out, we will speak with
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professor ibram kendi. then as the british government says it has entify t person who leaked cables, forci o other brbritisambabassor for calling trump inept, we lo at the reluctan pitical thriller a brisish inlligence speciast who riske everythg tolow the istle on u.s.s. dirty trtricks at the e unit natis s in t leaead to thth iraqnvasion o 2003. >> you work for the latest vernment. >> no. ?> no doub >> i worked for the british people. gun worked for british intelligence when she opened a top-secret nsa memo that revealed the u.s. was
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spying on u.n. security council members in order to pressure them into supporting me iraq invasion. she leaked the memo to the press, which began a chain of events that open the door to putting the entire iraq invasion on trial. katharine gun joins us live in studio to tell her story, along with the reporters from the observer who she turned to with her leak. a new dramatic film is out called "officicial secrets." all that a and more, coming upu. welcome to democracy now!,, the war and peace report. i'm amy goodman. in washington, d.c., capitol police arrested 70 catholic nuns and clergy thursday as they held a nonviolent sit-in protest inside the russell senate office building against the trump administration's inhumane treatment of immigrants and asylum seekers. more than a dozen protesters stood in a circle, holding the
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photographs of migrant children who have died in u.s. custody, and reciting their names. the latest protest came as immigrant communities across the country have prepared for reported ice raids that were scheduled to begin last weekend, but have largely not materialized. meanwhile,e, a group of indian asylum s seekers in el paso, texas, have laununched a hungerr strike from ininside an ice immigration jail, demanding they be released while they appeal their deportation orders. one of the men told the texas monthly, "if i go back to india, i will be tortured and killed. i can die here." it is the second time this year indian men have led hunger strikes at the el paso processing center. back on capitol hill, house democrats grilled president trump's acting homeland security secretary thursday over migranat family separations, the deaths of children taken into u.s. custody, and reports of squalid, overcrowded, and dangerous conditions in u.s. immigration jails. this is house overersight
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commmmittee chair elijah cummins questioning the acting dhs chief, kevin mcaleenan. >> you feel like you're doing a great job, right? >> we're doing our level best. >> what does that mean? what does that mean when a child is sitting in their own feces, can't take a shower? come on, man! what is that about? none of us would have our children in that position. they are human beings. amy: also o at thursday'y's hea, cocongressmemberer alexandriaa ocas-corortez nfrontnted kevin mcaleenan over hateful messages shared by thousands of current and former border patrol agents on a private facebook grououp. the group's online discussions, exposesed by propublblica earlir this mononth, are fu o of homophobic, anti-immigrant, and misogyninistic contentnt about mimigrants and asysylum seekerss well as racist attacks on n texs ngressmember vericica escorr and on ocasio-cortez, who is dedepicted in a a photoshoppedee being sexualally assaulteded by
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presidident trump. this is congressmember ocasio-cortez questioning mcaleenan. >> did you see the posts mocking margaret children's deaths? >> i did. >> did you see the posts planning is a go home to myself and omar escobar? >> i did. >> did you see the images off officers circulalating photoshop images of my violent rape? >> yes, i did. >> a are those officers on the b today anand responsiblble for te safety of mimigrant women n and children? >> thehere is an aggggressive ininvestigation n on this issue. you hearard the chief f of the bordrder patro t the most seninr female offfficial a and law-enfoforcement acroross the enti couountry, say y these poss do not meet our standard of contact and will be followed up aggressivevely. amy: president trump sought to distance himself thursday from racist chants made by his
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supporters at a campaign rally in north carolina on wednesday evenining. speaking from m the oval office, trtrump insisted that he "felt a little bit badly" about the chorus of "send her back" directed at minnesota congresswoman ilhan omar, a naturalized u.s. citizen who was born in somalia. she has been a u.s. citizen longer than the first lady. president trump made the claim even though video of wednesday evening's incident shows he did nothing to intervene as his supporters chanted, "send her back!" pres. trump: omar has a history of launching vicious anti-semitic screams. >> send her back! send her back! send her back! send her back! amy: president trump waited aa full 13 seconds before continuing his verbal attack on congressmember omar. this came just three days after he attacked omar and three other progressive democratic congresswomen of color on twitter, writing --
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"why don't they go back and help fix the totally broken and crime infested places from which they came." speaking from capitol hill thursday, congressmember ilhan omar accused trump of "spewing his fascist ideology onstage." omar later flew home to her district in minnesota, where she was greeted at the minneapolis airport by scores of supporters chanting, "welcome home, ilhan!" >> when i said i was the president's nightmare, well, you are watching it now. is seeings nightmare a somali immigrant refugee rise to congress. ring. in the where in the people's house. and we are going to continue to keep fighting until we have the america we know we all deserve. thank you. amy: later that evening, commerce member omar tweeted -- "home, sweet home."
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on thuhursday, thehe chair of fh hoe e homendnd secityy commite e asked the senate' sergeant-aarms, , who also chairs t the capitolol police b, to enhance security for "certain targeted members." we'll have more on president trump's latest racist remarks after headlines. thhohouse repepresentativives approved a b bill thursday thatt would raraise the fefederal mimm wage to 5 peper ur b by 25, while ending subininimumageses for tipped workersrs. in the senate, republican majority leader mitch mcconnell has said he e will not allow a vote on the minimum wage. meanwhile, domestic workers and their supporters are rallying behind a bill that would grant them the right to overtime pay, meal breaks, and collective bargaining. ununder federal labor lalaw, dosticic wkersrs are excluluded from many of the protections most workers receive. the domestic workers bill of rights act would change that. the bill is co-sponsored by washington congressmember pramila jayapal and california senator and 2020 presidential hopeful kamala hararris. this is ai-jen poo, , director f the e national domestic workers alliance. elder ce is exploding,
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especiallys s the by b boo gegeration ages and people live lolonger these are bsbs thaare e no goin to beutsourced. th won't t be aomatated are going to a a lar pa of ththjobs of f the future. and now thanks to all of you, we are going to make these jobs good jobs. amy: domestic workers are among the lowest paid workers in the united states and suffer high rates of wage theft and sexual harassment on the job. president trump said thursday he will name eugene scalia as his next secretary of labor. scalia is the son of the late far-right supreme court justice antonin scalia. he previously served as the labor department's top lawyer under president george w. bush. as a partner at the law firm gibson, dunn & crutcher, scalia has a long history of opposing labor unions on behalf of corporate clients, including walmart. much of scalia's legal work has been aimed at stopping the dodd-frank financial regulations enacted after the 2008 financial collapse. last week, alex acosta resigned as labor secretary amid an
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uproar over in extremely lenient plea deal he granted to the wealthy serial child sex abuser jeffrey epstein in 2008, when acosta was a u.s. attorney in florida. meanwhile, a federal judge in new york has denied bail to jeffrey epstein, declaring him a danger to the community and a significant flight risk. u.s. district judge richard berman pointed to a raid by investigators on epstein's mansion earlier this month that found piles of cash, stashes of diamonds, and an expired passport with epstein's photo next to someone else's name. listed under a saudi arabian address. iran is denying president trump's claim that the u.s. military shot down an iranian drone in n the strait of hormuz. the competing claims came as the trump admiministration d demandd iriran immediatetely release a l tanknker seized inin the gulf by iran's revolutiononary guard. iranian state media said the foign ship was carrying a million liters of oil ing illegally smuggled out of iran.
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in afghanistan, at least 12 people were killed and almost 90 wounded thursday as a pair of car bombs exploded at the gates of police headquarters in the southern city of kandahar. the taliban claimed responsibility for the attack. hours later, at least two people -- eight people were killed and 33 others wounded when an explosion tore through the entrance to a university in the capital kabul. this comes as u.s. officials and the taliban continue peace talks in qatarar aimed at enending the longest war in u.s. history, now in itsts 17th year. in japan, 33 people were killed thursday after a man burst into an animation studio, doused the three-story building with a flammable liquid, and set it on fire. police arrested a 41-year-old man after the arson attack on the company. witnesses reportedly heard the suspect shout "they stole my ideas and copied my novel" as police arrested him.
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if convicted, the men could face the death penalty. back in the united states, the national weather service has declared an excessive heat warning for vast swaths of the midwest and east coast, with warnings that high humidity and triple-digit temperatures could combine to bring heat-related illnesses and deaths. in washington, d.c., the heat index could reach 115 degrees this weekend when some 290 million americans are likely to experirience temperatures s abo0 degrees. this comes as the national oceanic and atmospheric administration reported that worldwide surface temperatures last month were the highest ever recorded for the month of june, a finding consistent with global heating caused by human acactivity. the environmental protection agency announced thursday it will not ban the widely used pesticide chlorpyrifos, even though the agency's own research shows it can cause brain damage in children. the obama administration said it would ban use of the toxic chemical in 2015, but the rule never took effect and was suspended in 2017 by then-epa
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administrator scott pruitt. this comes as the trump administration is preparing to roll back government regulations on nuclear power plants. staffers at the nuclear regulatory commission recommending allowing the nuclear industry to carry out more self inspections while slashing the skies and scope of radiation protection and emergency preparedness inspections of nuclear plants. and those are some of the headlines. this is democracy now!,, the war and peace report. i'm amy goodman. on thursday, president trumpmp attempted to distance himself from the racist chant of "send her back" about minnesota congresswoman ilhan omar that rang t through his campaign n ry wednesday night in greenville, north carolina. in fact, he did nothing to intervene as the chant rang out, pausing a full 13 secondsds in response to his own verbal attack on the congresswoman. unitedrump: omar blamed
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states for the crisis in venezuela. i mean, , think of thahat one. and she e looks down with contet on the hard-working americans, saying that igngnorance is pervasive in many parts of this country. obviously and importantly, omar has a history of launching vicious anti-semitic screams. >> send her back! send her back! send her back! send her back! send her back! full 13mp paused for seconds for "send her back" to bring out through the rally. trump's remarks came one day after the house of representatives voted to condemn his racist tweet telling four progressive congresswomen of color -- freshman representatives alexandria
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ocasio-cortez, ayanna pressley, rashida tlaib, and ilhan omar -- to go back to the crime infested places from which they came. three of the congresswomen were born in the united states. omar is a naturalized u.s. citizen who was born in somalia. she has been a citizen longer than first lady melania trump. despite outrage about trumump's tweeeets, the presesident -- onn his racist attacks, saying the congresswomen were "hate-filled extremists who are constantly trying to tear our country down." speaking to reporters in the oval office on thursday, trump attempted d to distance himsmsef from his supporters' chants. supporters work chanting, why didn't you asked them to stop? pres. trump: i started speaking very quickly. it really was -- i disagree with that, by the way. but it was quite a chance.
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little bit badly about it, but i will say this, i did -- and i started speaking very quickly, but it started up rather fast, as you probably know. >> will you tell y your supporos -- preses. trump: i was not happy with it. i disagree with it. amy: "i felt a little bit badly about it," trump said. though again, pausing 13 seconds to allow the chant to ring up. minnesota representative ilhan omar responded to the president's actions while speaking to reporters thursday. >> i want to make sure that every single person who is in this country, who is aspiring to become part of the american fabric, understands that nothing this president says should be taken to heart. we are americans as much as every onee else. this is our country and we are where we belong. and i told the people on m my election night in the great
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state of minnesota, we don't just welcome refugees. us in washington. as much as he is spewing his fascist ideology onstage, telling you as citizens to o go back because they don't agree with his detrimental policies for our country, we tell people states,e in the united dissent is patriotic. disagreement is welcome. debate is welcome to. especially in the people's house, all of our voices are uplifted and heard. amy: on thursday night, congresswoman omar arrived back in the twin cities in minnesota to a crowd of supporters at the airport. her constituents had a new chant to greet her, "welcome home." >> welcome home, omar! !elcome home, ilhan amy: congressmember omar
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retweeted this video thursday night writing, "home sweet home!" for more, we go to washington, d.c.c., where we're joined by ibram kendi, professor of history and international relations and founding director of the antiracist research & policy center at american university. he is the national book award-winning author of "stamped from the beginning: the definitive history of racist ideas in america" and his forthcoming book is titled "how to be an antiracist." in his latest piece in the atlantic headlined "am i an american?" kendi writes -- "president trump's tirade against four minority congresswomen prompts the question: whom does he consider to be american?" professor, welcome back to democracy now! respond to all that is happened this week. the house did not censure president trump, but it did criticize him for his attack on the four congresswomen, telling them to go back to their crime infested -- to go back to the
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crime infested countries. of course, they are all u.s. citizens. thisthink my response to week, with a continuously recocognize there's a certain segment of people in this country who imagine the home of america is for white people. and that when people of color cocome into that homome and criticize e that home, thehey s, how dare you come into my home and criticize my home? you might as well go back to your homome. well, what if itit is their hom, too? and what if they're trying to make at home better? i think ththis week has showed s how we are sort of imagining who is american and what is america. of course, that is a debate. -- of course, that is a debate we have been having in this country for a very long time. amy: the title of your piece is "am i an american?"
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explain what you write that. >> first and foremost, this idea or in back your country, my case, go back to africa, is something that people of color and black people have been hearing really from the beginning of this country. and it has always caused some of us to question, are we an american? at the same time, particularly era, it is rare that a white personon hears this idea,, this shout to go back to your country, because it is assumed they are an american. i just wanted to really speak through and talklk through and really thinknk deeply about the of what trumpct said is having on people and connect that to the history of people being told to go back to their country.
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amy: in your piece "am i an american?" you write -- i'm an american until i'm not. house speaker nancy pelosi told representatives ilhan omar of minnesota my on a pressley of massachusetts, rashida tlaib of michigan, anacostia cortez of new york to get in line to be a democrat in the way i'm told by moderates away from capitol hill to get in line to be an american. i hear the moderate message of compliance of the similes and of being happy just dining and i hear the message from the man with the blood red hat defending the moderate and giving me an ultimatum. can you unpack that for us, professor? >> i wanted to really talk through and discucuss the distinction between someone like says, as more or less i writee in the piece, that if you do not act like a slave, not anu are essentitially
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american and you need toto go bk to where youou come from. from the moderate -- even to a certain extentnt the liberal - - who says you are an american and this i is the way you're supposd to act as an american, you're not supposed to speak spanish. you're not supposed to dress that way. you're not supposed to look that way. you are supposed to do this in order to essentitially functionn politics. one is essentially -- one is telling us to essentially bee slaves, don't ever critique or lead, while the other is essentially trying to assimilate us into this single or sense of what an american is. amy: can you comment on the fear these congresswomen now feel? because they have been so targeted. afraid,ic officials are for example, for the safety of commerce member omar, calling
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for authorities to evaluate her security as well as the others. >> i think these four congresswomen obviously are very well-versed in american history and even, of course, the racial terror and violence that still persists. and they know the people who have been most likely to be affected by this violence -- whether you're talking about the era ofg era or even the police violence today -- are people who resist, people who resist american policies. the people who resist police officers. the people who resist racism. as four of the most sort of visible resistors of american racism and sexism and imperialism, it makes complete sense they would feaear violence happening one day to t them. amy: i want to ask you about how the media's been covering
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trump's racist attacks and also the broader conversation about racism that has emerged since. people were particularly enraged that cnn had richard spencer, an avowed white supremacist, on to talk about trump's comments. in a news conference earlier this week, congressmember omar said -- "this is the agenda of white nationalists, whether it is happening in chat rooms or it's happening on national tv." how can the media be anti-racist instead of complicit? >> and think theedia shoululd use words. you have boards like "racist," which is a descriptive term that describes people who are thatssing racist ideas certain racial groups are better or worse than others. and people who are supporting racist policies that yield racial inequity. and then you have terms like "antiracist," which are people who express notions of antiracist ideas of racial inequality and support policies that yield racial equality.
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when reporters and jouournalists see pepeople who are expressing racist ideas, they should describe that person as racist. when they see and hear people expressing antiracist ideas, they shohould describe people wo are expressing -- who are being antiracist. it is critical for the media to use words, to use descriptive terms in the way they use it in other ways. i i mean, they're going to talk about this weekend as being very hot, as they should. amy: i also want to ask you ababout white housuse counselor kellyanne conway defending trump's racist tweets this week. when a reporter asked her ababot it, shshe responded by askskingm his ethnicity. >> if the president was not telling these four congresswomen to return to the supposed countries of origin, to which countries was he referring? >> what is your ethnicity? >> uh --why is that relevanant? >> because i'm asking you a
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question. i am from ireland and italy. >> my own ethnicity is not relevant to my question i'm asking. >> it is. amy: that is kellyanne conway asking andrew feinberg, the white house reporter, his owner the city. ibram kendi, you raise an interesting point, sort of flipping this around to the luxury of knowing where your family did come from -- something many people, enslaved americans, did not know as they were forcibly taken from africa and brought to this country. >> i think that is what makes it particularly painful for descendents of enslaved africans. i think many of us know that our ancestors are from africa, but we cannot necessarily pinpoint exactly where. when we think of africa, we think of mother africa and many of us imagine africa, just somee
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.xtent, a place of origin but at the same time, we cacannt pinpoint where. when you say "go back to our country," it is hahard for us to not respond, "well, , what country?"" even if wewe were to go back t o africa, where e would d we go? it sort of remininds us of the slave trade, of the slave trade that millions of people were not only k killed, but separated frm their ancestors agagainst theher will, and now they're saying to us, against their will, against our will to go back to our country. amy: i'm going to end with eric swalwell just pulled out as a presidential contender, the congressmember from california. but he went to the house floor on tuesday just ahead of the house vote to condemn trump's attacks on the four democratic congresswoman of color. he listed a number of trump's past racist comments.
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and as he did so, several republicans interrupted him. >> we have an opportunity today to condemn or condone. birtherism's racist. sasaying a mexican judge cannote fair because of his heritage is racist. saying immigrants from mexico are rapists is racist. saying there were good people on both sidides in charlottttesvils racist. calling african countries [bleep] hole coununtries is racist. telling four members of this body to go home is racist. >> [indiscernible] >> do you think it is not racist? do you think it is not racist? >> the german will suspend. >> is that what you're saying? >> the gentleman will suspend. >> you can say that right now. >> order. >> the german from california is
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out of order. californiaan from shouse is spent. for what purpose does the gentleman -- >> his words are unparliamentary and i request that they be taken down. >> [indiscernible] >> order. amy: interestingly, republicans interrupted him by citing ann , a linehouse rule containing congressional rules that states "references to racial or other discrimination on the part of the president are not in order." the original rulebook banning the use of the word "racist" was written by thomas jefferson, himself a slave owner, but any irony in that was apparently lost on the republicans and the resolution passed. ,ou in your piece by writing "maybe i should have been asking who controls america instead of an by an americacan?"
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your final thoughts? >> i wrote that because whoever therols america is really one who is going to determine who is an american. i should also add that when we say someone is being racist, we are not making a personal attack , as some of those house republicans made it case, , we'e describing t them. this is describing whahat they e saying. this is describing what they are doing. this is not about what is in some of his heart, what is in some of these bones, this is about what is in their words and actions and that is how we determine who is being racist or antiracist. amy: ibram x. kendi is a professor of history and international relations and founding director of the antiracist research & policy center at american university. this fourth book is "how to be an antiracist." his latest piece in the atlantic is headlined "am i an american?" he will be back on democracy
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now! in a few weeks when his book comes out. this is democracy now! i am amy goodman. when we come back, a a whwhistleblower joins us,s, whos lessons for us. stay with us. ♪ [music break]
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amy: to hear her performance and interview, go to goodman.
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as the british government says it has identify the person who leaked cables that force at the british ambassador to the e u.s. for calling president trump and apt, we look at the real-life political thriller of a british intelligence specialist who risked everything to blow the whistle on u.s. dirty tricks at the united nations in the lead up to the iraq invasion. in 2003, a young specialist named katharine gun was working for britain's government communications headquarters known as gchq -- the intelligence agency similar to the national security agency or nsa -- when she opened a top-secret nsa memorandum. the highly-confidential memo revealed the united states was collaborating with britain in collecting sensitive information on united nations security council members in order to pressure them into supporting the iraq invasion. guided by her conscience, catherine -- katharine gun gun defied her g government and lead the memo to the press, setting off a chain of events that jeopardized her freedom andd safety, but also openened the dr to putting the entire iraq invasion on trial.
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acclaimed pentagon papers whistleblower, daniel ellsberg, described gun's action as "the most important and courageous leak i have ever seen." dan ellsberg saying -- "no one else -- including myself -- has ever done what katharine gun did: tell secret truths at personal risk, before an imminent war, in time, possibly, to avert it." well, now katharine gun's story is being told in theewew film "official secrets." isis is e trtrailer. >> katrine gun? what were you employed to do? intelligencanand reportednyththinof intntest to my clients. you are spy
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so you work for the itish gogovernnt. n >> no? w wor f the brish ople. do not glonntelligee -- the intellinceo government c l lie tthee british ople.. >> somne has betrayed the government and the count. >> you might need our hel , wef do not publili will beoncedinghat no one can ever tl the pele w whe thr govevement is lying. >> my husband has nothg g to d wi this.s. >> he is a muslim. folks i'm sorry?
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you chose loyalty to your untry ovoyalty tyour governme, your mriage, a yourlf. i thk that speaks relative -- rath h highlof y you >>atharine gun, your charged withhehe offense of the offial secrs act. >> d do u want trisksk iall? >> how do you plead? >> that is the trailer for the new movie "official secrets," based on the true-life story of british whistleblower katharine gun. at the time, her actions received very little attention from journalists in the united states. unless you are watching democracy y now! in 2004, democracy now! interviewed katharine gun. i asked her whwhy she decidededo leak the memo. >> when i saw this email asking gchq's help to bug the six wing
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nations to get a vote for war with iraq, i was very angry at first and very saddened it had despitethis and that all the talk aboutut tony blair and george bush about how important it was to get the u.n. on board and to legitimize any kind of aggression, they were actually going around it in such low handed mananner. i decided thahat the risk to my career was when you compare to the upcoming war in iraq. and the best thing for me to do was leaked this information to the press so everyone else could have the i informationon and hopepefully it couould avert ths disastrous course of events that had occurred. amy: that was katharine gun back
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in 2004. 15 years later. for more on this incredible story in the related thriller that is coming out on august 30 in movie theaters around the country, our guest katharine gun is played by keira knightley. we're joined by katharine gun herself, the whistleblower, former employee of britain's global surveillance center gchq. she is played by actress keira knightley. we're joined also by martin bright who is a journalist who reported gun's revelations in the observer, as well as ed vulliamy who's working in washingtonon as well with marti. at the time, the paper, their paper the observer, was openly supporting the iraq invasion, leading up to it. also with us, the director of
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"official secrets," gavin hood. we welcome you all. it is so relevant to be talking about this today is the british government is talking about cracking down on the leaker of the memos come of the british ambassador to the u.s. that forced him out. he was forced to resign because it showed d he called president trump inept and he said the singular reason the trump administration pulled out of the iran nuclear deal was because it was signed by president obama, and other issues. but they not only are saying they're going to crack down hard alsoe leaker, but they're saying they will crack down on any present reports this in britain. we thought it was really interesting to talk to you at this time. rine, how old were you in 2003? again, this is before the iraq war. this was in january and the war was in march.
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tell us the moment you're sitting at the equivalent of the nsa. you worked for gchq in britatai. you were a chinese translator? .> yes, mandarin chinese amy: u.n. nothing to do with what was going on covering stuff in iraq were working on that issue. >> no. amy: what did you see inin your email? >> it was a memo from a chat from a man who worked at the nsa , frank. it was just a request from the nsa for gchq to assist them in bugging the offices of the six u.n. security council delegates. amy: weight, spying on an eavesdropping, wiretapping, whatever? and who were these six countries? >> you are putting m me on the spot. amy: i know. gavin? >> angola, cameroon, bulgaria, chile, pakistan, and mexico.
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amy: so bugging these six countries. >> nonmember on the sessions nonpermanent members at the time.. amy: they would figure out which way they would vote so they could sway them. >> the idea was to gather information they could use to into them or threaten them voting yes for the resolution. >> tremendous amount of pressure coming down because if tony blair and bush had been able to resolution, the weapons of mass destruction issue would have been almost pretty much irrelevant. there were two legal ways to go to war, either based on the u.n. resolution we're all going together or you got approval to your self-defense argument. katharine gun, you see this memo that went out to everyone in your area. what did you think?
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>> i was appalled. i first reaction was shock a and anger. it was explosive information. i thought it was something that people needed to know about because it was basically exposing what was going on behind the scenes and the fact that all the flowery words he used in front of the cameras about doing every thing sham.atically was a amy: tony blair was the prime minister of britain at the time. what did you do? do anythingid not immediately but i went home. it was a friday when i saw the email. i went home and thought about it. i went back into my workplace and i just -- well, i made a photo copy and printed it out and folded it up into my handbag and put up for the end of the day to take out of the office. amy: you took it out and what did you do with it? who mailed it to a contact
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then passed it onto to a journalist who then passed it on to martin bright. amy: which takes us to martin bright. we'rere going to go to breaeak d time back to this discussion. guys, you do not want to miss this story and what would then take place. we're talking about "official secrets" a new hollywood movie coming out but it is the real-life story of katharine gun.n. how old were you at the time? >> 27. 27 years old working for british intelligence. she sees this memo that says the evidence for going t to war woud not be based on intelligence of whether their work wmd, but on trying to get something on the u.n. security council members, personalal or whatever, to get them to vote for the invasion, to back president george w. bush. this is democracy now! back in 30 seconds. ♪ [music break]
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amy: this is democracy now!, i'm amy goodman. we are looking at the real aa polititical thriller of a britih intelligence spealalist kakathine gun whoisked everhihing tblowow t whistst on u. 30 tris at the united
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nations in the lead t to th insion of iraq in 2003. shwawas woing g fobritisis intelligence, gchq, the ency milar to the nsa, when she leaked a moo revealing the unitedtatates was collaborating wi b brita inn collectg sensitive informaon to ho over u. sure to cncil membererto get them to sport the iraq w. her story is being told in "official secretsts." this i is a clip.. >> your supervrvisor saks highly of youour intntegrity. is aays this breach foolish onone off. was it? >> teaming have i leaked anything else? no. >> do you i intend to? >> no. >> i have always been proud to wowork a at gchq. >> untntil now. >> yes, , until now.w. >> what were you employed to do? >> i can't be specific. >> be general than.
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>> i translateted signal intelligigence and are rereportd anythihing i thought might be of interest to my clients. >> your clients? the british defense. cooks you worked for the british government? >> i work k for the brbritish people. i gather intelligence so the government can protect the british people. i do not gather intelligence so the government can lie to the brisish pele.. gun, youpt, mrs ee a s s. >> yes. >> you gather infmatitionrom people's compers and e that your clients. >> yes. >> you eavesdrop on ivate coersation >> yes >>nd now you' u upsett being asked do it - >> i don't object to being aed toollect information that coul hp prevena terror atta.
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what i object is being asked to gather intelligence to hel fix vote at e u.n. and deceive the world into going too war. fromthat was a clip "official secrets" coming out august 30 in theaters around the country. that is currently playing katharine gun, who is in her studio now, the whistleblower, former british spy, worked for british intelligence, explaining memo, whiched this would get to the press, which would get to the observer, which brings us to our next to guest, martin bright and ed vulliamy. martin, talk about how you got this memo. you actually at that point had never met katharine gun. >> it was a very and usual situation. we were handed a simple sheet of
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paper that had a series of words typed on it. usually, with the whistleblower you work closely with them did not comeharine to me. she passed the memo to one of her contacts. that contact had connections with the antiwar movement. someone within the antiwar movement who was a former journalist took the memo initially to another newspaper, and then finally, it came to me. on the face of it, it looks like an extraordinary story. it is not every day you get top-secret memo -- not just a top-secret memo from gchq, but a top-secret memo from the nsa sent to gchq. very excitinga story. the difficulty was it was just words typed on a piece of paper. we had no idea where it had come from, and that is really where the story started fored and myself.
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your topou go to editors and you say, i this piece of paper. catherine had ripped off the top, is that right? >> the top of it ripped off of the memo. header information you would have was not there. when i met yvonne ridley, the former journalist who hated me the document -- handed me the document, it was immensely infuriating. i said, what is this? what are you doing here? this is of no use to me at all. she turned the piece of paper over and on the back someone had written the header information. amy: so it was chicken scratch on the back step that was katharine -- >> it wasn't me, actually. talk about this. your argument to the editors come you think this is real, but you do have to track it down.
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explain what the header said, who you had to verify this with. >> the header information included the name frank koser, who was the nsa's head of regional targets at the time. so we have at least that. we have a least a name. containedemo itself language that was consistent with intelligence service language. we had experts look at that as well. amy: so you call ed and say, can you track down this guy? among the other things. >> initially, i was quite nervous. i talked to a couple of colleagues about even taking it to the editor because you don't want to take a half-baked story to your editor, particularly the type of intense, prewar preparation the drums of war are rolling at that period. but -- amy: that is the time he should run the fastest to the editor.
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>> but only with the story you know is true. >> we knew the time was short. at the time, the observer newsroom and the observer is up was split because some people supported the war and some did not. ththere was a group of journalis who trusted each other -- amy: the paper came out supporting the war. >> the editorial line was supporting the war, but there were those within the paper who did not. it was a very collaborative place. and i knew i needed help. i knew that ed was extremely experienced journalist. i called him and asked him if he could do anything to help track down frank koser. amy: the guy at the nsa. ed, you are played brilliantly in this movie "official secrets." so you have to train -- track down frank koser. what do you do?
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>> these actors are so clever. he is more me than i am. and likewise of the other performances, extraordinary in this film. these were, as martin has suggested, divisive, divided difficult times. it sounds familiar. obligation is that whether we support war against the war. our obligation is to the truth. truth was having a hard time at the observer at that point. there's a back story. story. katharine's there's a back story in the film that plays its part. i had found a source called no yours, aa namesake of wise man. he told me over to meetings, a, we know that saddam hussein has no weapons of mass destruction. everybody knows it. is shadow
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intelligence operation going on in the pentagon with all of your .avorite names on this program they are basically cooking this up will stop it is not true. i found that story seven times to the observer and could not get into the paper. i did not know why. i was going crazy. it later emerged the newspaper was collaborating very closely with tony blair and his sort of enforcers to keep this kind of thing out of the paper. so where i had failed with my whistleblower, martin was succeeding. but this meant finding koser. around.sked i asked mr. goodman and others, can you have me find this guy?
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they won't just put you through to a man who does not exist in a place that does not exist. amy: martin, you tried it. >> i naively tried it. amy: the press office at -- >> the nsa. they said, we don't give out names. amy: so you find -- >> i came upon an extension number. that is where you get through. amy: what did you say? .> i put on an american accent sure enough, frank koser. it was like, who's thihis? i said, i'm calling about the gchq memo you sent. click. and go so you got through. martin bright, you're able to move through this story. what was the headline? >> "nsa dirty tricks at the u.n.
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" amy: talk about what happened. you are the men of the hour. you cnn, bbc, everyone on the line. they want to interview martin bright because you have the story of this memo. you did not know who katharine gun was -- they did not have who katharine gun was, but you're going to get the goods on these u.n. security council members which would force them to vote for the invasion of iraq step everyone is blocking you and then fox, cnn, and then they all canceled. >> yes. it was an extraordinary moment. every journalists dream to have frontpage splash stories that get followed up around the world. it was particularly explosive in chile. amy: hcile was one of the six nations. >> we were getting calls from all over the world. huges one of those stories. the american
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networks pulled out. we still do not know to this day why they did that. some of it was to do with complications over and importunate spellcheck. amy: this is the astounding moment. you print the memo -- >> and its entirety, yes. amy: but it the spilling of it is british spelling. >> we had a terrible moment where we had seen organizations follow the story of, the drudge report, famous right-wing website, followed it up and then they changed the headline from condi rice orders operation at the nsa and says "british newspaper prints fake memo." the british it was spelling. that proves it is a fake memo, they think, but it is just because the copy editor ran it through spellcheck. >> it was a terrible moment when
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i had to look in my drawer -- amy: katharine gun, your home, you see this headline splashed across the front page and your was that you had leaked right front and center. you probably threw up? >> no, i was in shock when i saw it. but i felt straightaway it was emblazoned across my four head, target." look at me, i was petrified. i was trimming like a leave. are pretty much ran home and my husband was still in bed and i just collapsed. amy: talk about -- i mean, you risked eveverything. in fact, your husband would they attempt to deport him? is, for to into but
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it is, whatever it is, but his asylum case was coming to an end at the same time my case began. so as soon as i was -- well, we will get to this i suppose, but i was arrested and the whole process i think was a parallel process -- joint amy: it is astounding gchq questions you but then you turn your self in. tell the final results of what happened when you go to court, you face years in prison, and what happened. >> they dropped the charges against me. amy: this was how long after? >> a full nine to 10 months after the event. amy: and the u.s. went to war with i iraq. >> y yes. amy: this is remarkable story. we will do part two and post it online at to talk about the courage katharine gun had in revealing this
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information and then what this means for whistleblowers today and for u.s. british policy today. that does it for our samples of katharine gun, martin bright, ed vulliamy,
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>> this is al jazeera. hello. this is the newshour live from london. coming up in the next 60 minutes, the u.k. says iran has seized two oil tankers in the strait of hormuz, one british flag, the other british owned. iran disputes donald trump's claim that a u.s. warship destroyed an iranian drone. corruptrica's


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