Journalist Glenn Greenwald slides ‘Pardon Snowden’ into Trump’s Twitter feed, gets a nod from fugitive whistleblower


08-09-20 04:25:00,

A call to pardon Edward Snowden has appeared on President Donald Trump’s Twitter page, courtesy of a presidential retweet of Glenn Greenwald and some creative renaming of the journalist’s account.

Greenwald won a George Polk Award and a Pulitzer Prize for his reporting on the global mass electronic surveillance by US intelligence, which was based on documents leaked by Edward Snowden in 2013. On Monday, he managed to deliver a call to pardon the whistleblower to the 85.8 million followers of the US President.

It started with CNN national security reporter Ryan Browne lashing out at Trump for suggesting that US military commanders had a vested interest in perpetrating wars and keeping US taxpayer money flowing to defense contractors. Browne called it “an unprecedented public attack” on the Pentagon by a sitting US president only to be confronted by Greenwald, who called him a “drama queen” and said he was obviously wrong.

President Dwight Eisenhower famously warned the country about the dangers of an unchecked military industrial complex in his farewell speech as he was stepping down in 1961. Greenwald shared clips from the address, and Trump retweeted one of them on his page.

Here’s a lesser-known part of Eisenhower’s Farewell Address. He had 16 minutes on TV to warn Americans of what he thought they most needed to know, and used it primarily to emphasize the dangers of Pentagon growth, weapons spending, and the threats of Endless War:

— Glenn Greenwald (@ggreenwald) September 7, 2020

This gave the journalist a chance for a bit of advocacy on behalf of his former source. He changed the name of his Twitter account into “Pardon Snowden”. Trump earlier floated the idea of stopping US attempts to prosecute the NSA whistleblower, who currently lives under political asylum in Russia, but never acted on it. Snowden himself apparently appreciated the gesture, wondering if Trump keeping the retweet meant he “made up his mind”.

Greenwald is not the first person to slide some activism into Trump’s feed. Fellow journalist Max Blumenthal used the same trick in June to deliver to the President’s followers a barrage of slogans like “Defund the police”, “Free Julian Assange” and “Free Palestine,

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ACLU gets to decide who’s a journalist? Judge suggests having group vet reporters to protect press covering Portland protests


02-08-20 08:54:00,

A federal judge in Portland has proposed making the American Civil Liberties Union an arbiter to distinguish between legitimate journalists and protesters-in-disguise – a move with important implications for press protections.

The issue stems from an order by US District Judge Michael Simon last week banning federal officers from arresting or assaulting journalists covering the ongoing protests in Portland. Federal agencies said the ruling was untenable because some protesters are falsely labeling themselves as press in nightly clashes outside the federal courthouse.

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Simon said Friday that requiring journalists to be vetted by the ACLU and giving blue vests to those who are legitimate could be a solution to properly identifying reporters. He cited a video submitted by the government showing a protester with the word “press” on his helmet bursting through a barrier outside the courthouse and trying to coordinate an attack.

“Simply having ‘press’ on your helmet might not be the best way to preserve first amendment rights,” Simon said.

Matt Borden, a lawyer who represented the ACLU and journalists in seeking the restraining order, said he doesn’t think the ACLU or any other organization should be put in the position of deciding who’s a journalist.

The question of journalist legitimacy has become murkier in an era where anyone with a phone and an internet connection can do reporting and call themselves a reporter. Choosing the decision-maker is all the more tricky.

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Conservative journalists might have justified trepidation about the ACLU being an arbiter for their profession. Liberal law professor Alan Dershowitz wrote in 2018 that the ACLU had become a “hyper-partisan, hard-left political advocacy group” rather than a neutral defender of civil liberties.

Heaven help us.“We could redefine ‘journalist’ to someone who is authorized by the ACLU,” U.S. District Judge Michael Simon said. “The ACLU could maintain a list of who they are giving vests to and give them appropriate guidance and instructions.”!!!!

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Levenswerk van journalist die wetenschapper werd | Uitpers


30-04-20 10:18:00,

‘Terrorisme in België’ is het laatste deel van een trilogie van Paul Ponsaers die in 2020 met veel meer kennis en voortschrijdend inzicht kan terugblikken op vijftig jaar polarisering en politiek geweld in België. Door zijn leeftijd heeft Ponsaers die halve eeuw van op de eerste rij kunnen meemaken als journalist die later wetenschappelijk onderzoeker werd en die nu de luxe heeft om terug te blikken op een tijd die nog altijd niet afgesloten is en die nog steeds vragen blijft oproepen. Dat is een zeer bijzondere uitgangspositie. Alleen daarom al verdient dit werk alle aandacht.

Paul Ponsaers is geen beginneling in de hier gepresenteerde materie. Heel zijn carrière is hij intens bezig geweest met het bestuderen en beschrijven van politiek geweld in de recente geschiedenis van ons land. Daar begon hij al mee in 1976 toen hij promoveerde als socioloog aan de KUL op een proefschrift over terrorisme met als case study de fameuze Baader-Meinhof Groep. Ook als journalist – hij werkte lang voor De Morgen – behoorde het onderwerp tot zijn interesseveld, maar later kwam hij via een doctoraat terug in academisch vaarwater terecht. Vanaf 1998 was Paul Ponsaers immers verbonden aan de UGent, meer bepaald aan de Vakgroep Strafrecht & Criminologie, Onderzoeksgroep Sociale Veiligheidsanalyse, waar hij in de domeinen van de Politiewetenschappen, de Rechtssociologie en Financieel-Economische Criminaliteit doceerde.

Hoewel Ponsaers sinds 2012 op emeritaat is, blijkt hij nog lang niet uitgeschreven, want met dit lijvige ‘Terrorisme in België’ beëindigt hij een trilogie, uitgegeven door Gompel&Svacina, dat begon met ‘Jihadi’s in België (2017) en ‘Loden jaren – de Bende van Nijvel gekaderd’ (2018). Daarmee, zo schrijft zijn inleider en ex-collega Rik Coolsaet, voltooit hij een triptiek die de hele bandbreedte van het politieke geweld in de Belgische geschiedenis van de laatste vijftig jaar in beeld brengt. Het is de terugblik en het levenswerk geworden van iemand die in 2020 met veel meer kennis en voortschrijdend inzicht kan terugblikken op polarisering en politiek geweld in België. Door zijn leeftijd heeft Ponsaers die halve eeuw van op de eerste rij kunnen meemaken als journalist die later wetenschappelijk onderzoeker werd en die nu de luxe heeft om terug te blikken op een tijd die nog altijd niet afgesloten is en die nog steeds vragen blijft oproepen. Dat is een zeer bijzondere uitgangspositie.

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‘Every journalist should feel a cold, icy hand running down their spine’: Assange’s extradition case examined in new RT doc


24-02-20 06:42:00,

With Julian Assange’s US extradition hearing getting under way in London, RTD’s new film sheds light on why the WikiLeaks founder’s landmark case may lay the path for future prosecution of journalists.

“Every journalist in the United States should feel a cold, icy hand running down their spine at the charges that had been leveled against this publisher. Because they could be next,” writer Suelette Dreyfus says about Assange whose project published leaked documents exposing possible US War crimes in Iraq and letters exposing shenanigans against Bernie Sanders in 2016 by bosses within the Democratic Party.

“If Julian Assange being a publisher is put in prison for being a publisher, for no other reason than being a publisher, then we have no rules,” says a Swedish journalist Johannes Wahlstrom, who worked with WikiLeaks on the documentary ‘Mediastan’.

The US Department of Justice goes to great pains to argue that Julian Assange is not a journalist, but a spy who conspired with a former army intelligence analyst Chelsea Manning to disclose classified documents related to the national defense. However, the charges Assange is facing are “absolutely applicable to potentially other journalism or media publications,” according to Dreyfus.

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Journalist Mary Kostakidis and director John Pilger also warn of the “extraterritorial reach” of Assange’s charges.

An Australian is wanted in the US on 18 counts of violating the controversial Espionage Act which could carry a maximum sentence of 175 years in prison. The indictment refers to materials, including the classified ‘collateral murder’ footage from Iraq, and US diplomatic cables, whose disclosure, according to the US administration, threatened national security and put people at risk.

It’s simply a “blatant lie,” Angela Richter, theatre director and Assange’s close friend, says. “If anyone would have been killed because of WikiLeaks, they would have dragged the person in front of the camera, or proved it, or taken it against them.”

Assange’s public support significantly subsided over the years,

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