AN unREASONABLE MAN, directed by Henriette Mantel

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Re: AN unREASONABLE MAN, directed by Henriette Mantel

Postby admin » Mon Jul 27, 2015 12:03 am


Katrina vanden Heuvel
by Wikipedia



Katrina vanden Heuvel
Katrina vanden Heuvel, 2011
Born October 7, 1959 (age 55)
New York City, New York, U.S.
Alma mater Princeton University
Occupation Editor, publisher and entrepreneur
Spouse(s) Stephen F. Cohen (m. 1988)
Children Nicola (b. 1991)
Parent(s) Jean Stein and William vanden Heuvel
Relatives Jules and Doris Stein (maternal grandparents)

Katrina vanden Heuvel (/ˈvændənhuːvəl/; born October 7, 1959) is the editor, publisher, and part-owner of the magazine The Nation. She has been the magazine's editor since 1995. She is a frequent commentator on numerous political television programs. Vanden Heuvel is a self-described liberal and progressive. She is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations.[1]

Early life

Vanden Heuvel was born in New York City, the daughter of Jean Stein, an heiress, best-selling author, and editor of the literary journal Grand Street, and William vanden Heuvel, an attorney, former US ambassador, member of John F. Kennedy's administration, businessman, and author.

William vanden Heuvel
by Wikipedia

William Jacobus vanden Heuvel (born April 14, 1930) is an attorney, former diplomat, businessman and author.

He is the father of Katrina vanden Heuvel, longtime editor of The Nation magazine and Wendy vanden Heuvel from his marriage to author/editor Jean Stein, the wealthy daughter of Jules C. Stein, founder of MCA.

Vanden Heuvel was born in Rochester, New York and attended public schools in New York. He is a graduate of Deep Springs College and Cornell University. At Cornell Law School, he was editor-in-chief of Cornell's law review. He was admitted to the New York Bar in 1952. He joined the law firm of Donovan, Leisure, Newton & Irvine as an Associate in 1952, his first law firm.

Career background

As an early protégé of Office of Strategic Services founder William Joseph Donovan, vanden Heuvel served at the U.S. embassy (1953–1954) in Bangkok, Thailand as Donovan's Executive Assistant. Afterward, in 1958, vanden Heuvel served as Counsel to New York State Governor Averell Harriman.

"... not one plan or proposal, made anywhere in the democracies by either Jews or non-Jewish champions of the Jews after the Nazi conquest of Europe, could have rescued one single Jew who perished in the Holocaust." -- William vanden Heuvel

-- "The Abandonment of the Jews," by David S. Wyman

He became U.S. Attorney General Robert F. Kennedy's assistant in 1962 and was involved in Kennedy's 1964 and 1968 political campaigns. As special assistant to Attorney General Kennedy, vanden Heuvel played the key role in court orchestrating the desegregation of the Prince Edward County school system in Virginia. This action expanded the scope of the landmark Brown v. Board of Education decision.

In 1965 he joined Stroock & Stroock & Lavan, as Senior Partner, where he practiced international and corporate law. He is currently Senior Counsel to the firm.

In the 1970s, vanden Heuvel, as Chairman of the New York City Board of Corrections led a campaign to investigate conditions in the city’s prison system. He has had a lifelong involvement in the reform of the criminal justice system.

He served as Ambassador to the European office of the United Nations in Geneva (1977–79) and United States Deputy Ambassador to the United Nations (1979–1981) during the Jimmy Carter Administration.

Vanden Heuvel has held directorships in a number of public companies. They include: the U.S. Banknote Corporation, Time Warner, Inc., and the North Aegean Petroleum company, and others. Since 1984 he has been a Senior Advisor to the investment banking firm Allen & Company.

Currently he is Chairman of the American Austrian Foundation and Co-chairman of the Council of American Ambassadors. Since 1984 vanden Heuvel has been Chairman of Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt Institute and a member of the Council on Foreign Relations. He is a Governor and former Chairman of the United Nations Association, and has written extensively on the United Nations and American foreign policy. He is also a member of Collegium International, an organazation of leaders with political, scientific, and ethical expertise whose goal is to provide new approaches in overcoming the obstacles in the way of a peaceful, socially just and an economically sustainable world. He served as an honorary chairman of The OSS Society.

She has one sister and two step-siblings. Her maternal grandparents were Music Corporation of America founder Jules C. Stein and Doris Babbette Jones (originally Jonas).

Jules C. Stein
by Wikipedia:

Dr. Jules C. Stein (April 26, 1896 – April 29, 1981) was an American musician, physician, and business leader.

He was born in South Bend, Indiana, and received degrees from the University of Chicago and Rush Medical College. He founded the Music Corporation of America (MCA) in 1924.

Stein and his wife Doris founded the Jules Stein Eye Institute at UCLA in the 1960s.

He died in Los Angeles, aged 85.

His widow, Doris J. Stein, founded the Doris J. Stein Foundation in Beverly Hills, California. Doris Stein, and her daughter, Mrs. Susan Shiva, both died from breast cancer the same year (1984) within months of each other.

Dr. Stein was the grandfather of the noted journalist and television personality Katrina vanden Heuvel, who publishes The Nation.

Through her maternal grandmother, vanden Heuvel is a distant cousin of actor and comedian George Jessel.[2] Her mother is Jewish and her father has Dutch and Belgian ancestry.[/b]

Vanden Heuvel graduated from the Trinity School in 1977.[3] She studied politics and history at Princeton University, writing her senior thesis on McCarthyism and serving as editor-in-chief of the Nassau Weekly. She graduated summa cum laude from Princeton in 1981.[2]


During her undergraduate years at Princeton, she served as editor of the Nassau Weekly, a school publication, and had an internship at National Lampoon magazine in 1978. She also worked as a production assistant at ABC television. According to a Princeton alumni publication, during her junior year, she had already worked "as a The Nation intern for nine months after taking the 'Politics and the Press' course taught by Blair Clark, the magazine's editor from 1976 to 1978" and "returned to The Nation in 1984 as assistant editor for foreign affairs".[2]

As an owner of The Nation, she is one of a group of investors brought together in 1995 by then-editor Victor Navasky in a for-profit partnership to buy the magazine – which was then losing $500,000 a year – from investment banker Arthur L. Carter. The investors included, among others, Paul Newman, E.L. Doctorow, Alan Sagner (former Corporation for Public Broadcasting Chairman), and Peter Norton (Norton Utilities software creator).[4]

In 1989, vanden Heuvel was promoted to The Nation's editor-at-large position, responsible for its coverage of the USSR. In 1990, she co-founded Vy i My (You and We), a quarterly feminist journal linking American and Russian women. In 1995, vanden Heuvel was made editor of The Nation. Her blog at The Nation is called "Editor's Cut". She writes an op-ed column for The Washington Post.[5]

In a 2005 interview with Theodore Hamm in The Brooklyn Rail, vanden Heuvel describes the contents of The Nation and its larger role in news media: "Ideas, policy, activism, reporting, investigative reporting, as well as cultural pieces, reviews, writing. I hope people understand that about a third of this magazine, every week, is a very well edited, fascinating, cultural section, featuring reviews to people’s of the big books as well as some of the under-appreciated, under-the-radar, independent books and films and art. But the main part of The Nation is to put on the agenda the ideas and views and news that might not otherwise be there, to comment—from our perspective—on the news of the week—and to provide strategies and some measure of hope in these times."[6]

She is the co-editor of Taking Back America – And Taking Down The Radical Right (Nation Books, 2004) and, most recently, editor of The Dictionary of Republicanisms (Nation Books, 2005). She co-edited (with her husband, Stephen F. Cohen) Voices of Glasnost: Interviews with Gorbachev's Reformers (Norton, 1989) and editor of The Nation: 1865–1990, and the collection A Just Response: The Nation on Terrorism, Democracy and September 11, 2001. She is also a frequent commentator on American and international politics on ABC's This Week, as well as on MSNBC, CNN and PBS. Her articles have appeared in The Washington Post, the Los Angeles Times, The New York Times and The Boston Globe.

Vanden Heuvel serves on the Institute for Policy Studies Board of Trustees.

Personal life

In 1988, vanden Heuvel married Stephen F. Cohen, a writer on the Soviet Union and a professor of Russian Studies at Princeton University for 30 years, subsequently at New York University.[7][8] They were married by Presbyterian minister and peace activist William Sloane Coffin in a non-denominational ceremony.[7] They have one daughter, Nicola, born in 1991. The family resides in the Upper West Side section of the Manhattan borough of New York City.[9]

Vanden Heuvel is a recipient of Planned Parenthood's Maggie Award for her 2003 article, "Right-to-Lifers Hit Russia," a report on the pro-life movement in that country. The special issue she conceived and edited, "Gorbachev's Soviet Union", was awarded New York University's 1988 Olive Branch Award. Vanden Heuvel was also co-editor of Vyi i Myi, a Russian-language feminist newsletter.

Vanden Heuvel has received awards for public service from numerous groups, including the Liberty Hill Foundation, the Correctional Association and the Association for American-Russian Women. In 2003, she received the NYCLU's Callaway Prize for the Defense of the Right of Privacy.

She was the recipient of the American-Arab Anti-discrimination Committee's 2003 "Voices of Peace" award. Vanden Heuvel is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations. She serves on the board of the Institute for Policy Studies, the World Policy Institute, the Correctional Association of New York, and the Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt Institute and previously served on the board of the Institute for Women's Policy Research.[10]


Voices of Glasnost: Interviews with Gorbachev's Reformers (1990), co-authored with husband Stephen F. Cohen (ISBN 0-393-30735-2)
A Just Response: The Nation on Terrorism, Democracy, and September 11, 2001 (2002), edited by Katrina vanden Heuvel (ISBN 1-56025-400-9)
Taking Back America – And Taking Down the Radical Right (2004), edited by Katrina vanden Heuvel and Robert Borosage (ISBN 1-56025-583-8)
Dictionary of Republicanisms: The Indispensable Guide to What They Really Mean When They Say What They Think You Want to Hear (2005) by Katrina vanden Heuvel (ISBN 1-56025-789-X)
The Change I Believe In: Fighting for Progress in the Age of Obama. New York: Nation Books. 2011. ISBN 978-1-56858-688-5.


1. "Membership Roster - Council on Foreign Relations". 2012-08-02. Retrieved 2012-08-07.
2. McDougal, Dennis (2001). The Last Mogul. Da Capo Press. p. 27. ISBN 0-306-81050-6. Retrieved 2012-11-26.
3. Staff (1988-12-05). "Ms. vanden Heuvel Is Wed". New York Times. Retrieved 2012-11-26.
4. Deirdre Carmody (1995-01-14). "COMPANY NEWS; Editor in Deal for Nation Magazine". Retrieved 2012-11-26.
5. "Katrina vanden Heuvel Archive". The Washington Post. March 1, 2010. Retrieved May 7, 2010.
6. Hamm, Theodore (December 2005). "Katrina vanden Heuvel in conversation with Theodore Hamm". The Brooklyn Rail. Retrieved April 9, 2014.
7. "Ms. vanden Heuvel Is Wed",; December 5, 1988.
8. "Stephen F. Cohen profile". Retrieved 2012-11-26.
9. 'Peace, Quiet and a Frozen Dessert', New York Times, August 3, 2012; retrieved January 8, 2014.
10. Vanden Heuvel biography, The Nation; accessed April 9, 2014.


Katrina vanden Heuvel
by Wikipedia

Katrina vanden Heuvel (born October 7, 1959) is the editor, part-owner, and publisher of the liberal magazine The Nation. She has been the magazine's editor since 1995 and a frequent guest on numerous television programs. Vanden Heuvel is a self described liberal.


Katrina vanden Heuvel is a recipient of Planned Parenthood's Maggie Award for her article, "Right-to-Lifers Hit Russia." The special issue she conceived and edited, "Gorbachev's Soviet Union," was awarded New York University's 1988 Olive Branch Award. Vanden Heuvel was also co-editor of Vyi i Myi, a Russian-language feminist newsletter.

She has received awards for public service from numerous groups, including The Liberty Hill Foundation, The Correctional Association and The Association for American-Russian Women. In 2003, she received the New York Civil Liberties Union's Callaway Prize for the Defense of the Right of Privacy. She is also the recipient of The American-Arab Anti-discrimination Committee's 2003 "Voices of Peace" award. Vanden Heuvel is a member of The Council on Foreign Relations, and she also serves on the board of The Institute for Women's Policy Research, The Institute for Policy Studies, The World Policy Institute, The Correctional Association of New York and The Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt Institute.


Katrina vanden Heuvel is editor and publisher of The Nation magazine.

She is also an owner of The Nation, being one of a handful of investors brought together in 1995 by then-Editor Victor Navasky in a for-profit partnership to buy the magazine - then losing $500,000 a year more - from investment banker Arthur Carter. This group of investors included, among others, former Corporation for Public Broadcasting Chairman Alan Sagner, novelist E.L. Doctorow, actor Paul Newman and Peter Norton, creator of the Norton Utilities software.

Born in 1959, vanden Heuvel studied politics and history at Princeton University, writing her senior thesis on McCarthyism. She graduated summa cum laude from Princeton in 1981. She worked as a production assistant at ABC Television. According to a Princeton alumni publication, during her Junior year she had already worked "as a Nation intern for nine months after taking the 'Politics and the Press' course taught by Blair Clark, the magazine's editor from 1976 to 1978" and "returned to The Nation in 1984 as assistant editor for foreign affairs."

Her father William vanden Heuvel served between 1953 and 1954 as executive assistant to William Joseph Donovan, founder of the Office of Strategic Services (forerunner of the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA)), during Donovan's tenure as U.S. Ambassador to Thailand. By the early 1960s vanden Heuvel was a special assistant to New York Governor Averell Harriman and then to U.S. Attorney General Robert Kennedy. In 1976 Bill vanden Heuvel was chairman of Jimmy Carter's New York primary campaign committee. Following Carter's victory, vanden Heuvel served from 1979 until 1981 as Deputy Permanent Representative to the United Nations with the rank of Ambassador. Today he sits on the board of the United Nations Association-USA and several other organizations.

Her mother is Jean Stein, an editor and daughter of Music Corporation of America founder Jules C. Stein.

In 1988 Katrina vanden Heuvel wed New York University history Professor Stephen F. Cohen, an expert on the Soviet Union. They have one daughter, Nicola.

In 1989 vanden Heuvel was promoted to The Nation's editor-at-large position, responsible for its coverage of the USSR. In 1990 she co-founded Vyi i Myi ("You and We"), a quarterly feminist journal linking American and Russian women. She also did reporting for the Moscow News. In 1995, vanden Heuvel was made editor of The Nation. She and Navasky moved aggressively to expand The Nation via radio, the Internet, books and other synergistic opportunities.

Vanden Heuvel's latest book is Taking Back America: And Taking Down the Radical Right (co-authored with Nation Contributing Editor Robert L. Borosage, co-director of the Campaign for America's Future); it is published by Nation Books.

She and her husband are co-editors of Voices of Glasnost: Interviews with Gorbachev's Reformers (Norton, 1989) and editor of The Nation: 1865-1990, and the collection A Just Response: The Nation on Terrorism, Democracy and September 11, 2001.

She is a frequent commentator on American and international politics on MSNBC, CNN, PBS, and ABC, as well as a weekly guest pundit on the John Batchelor Show, heard on WABC New York and KFI Los Angeles. Her articles have appeared in The Washington Post, The Los Angeles Times, The New York Times and The Boston Globe.

Her weblog ( is called "Editor's Cut".
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Re: AN unREASONABLE MAN, directed by Henriette Mantel

Postby admin » Mon Jul 27, 2015 1:23 am


Todd Gitlin
by Wikipedia



Todd Gitlin
Todd Gitlin in 2007
Born January 6, 1943 (age 72) [1]
New York City
Nationality USA
Alma mater Bronx High School of Science
Harvard College (A.B., Mathematics)
University of Michigan (M.A., Political Science)
University of California, Berkeley (Ph.D., Sociology)
Occupation sociologist, author, professor
Known for Students for a Democratic Society
Spouse(s) Laurel Ann Cook (m. 3-Nov-1995)
Parent(s) Max M. Gitlin
Dorothy Renik
Awards Bosch Berlin Prize in Public Policy
Fellow at the American Academy in Berlin

Todd Gitlin (born 1943) is an American sociologist, political writer, novelist, and cultural commentator. He has written widely on the mass media, politics, intellectual life and the arts, for both popular and scholarly publications.

New Left activist

Gitlin became a political activist in 1960, when he joined a Harvard group called Tocsin, against nuclear weapons. In 1963 and 1964, Gitlin was president of Students for a Democratic Society; he was elected, he writes, because "none of the other four candidates, each of whom was experienced, was willing to serve," since "we mistrusted power, including our own! Recruiting leaders was hard." (Letters to a Young Activist, p. 117) He helped organize the first national demonstration against the Vietnam War, held in Washington, D. C., on April 17, 1965, with 25,000 participants, as well as the first civil disobedience directed against American corporate support for the apartheid regime in South Africa - a sit-in at the Manhattan headquarters of Chase Manhattan Bank on March 19, 1965.[2] In 1968, he signed the “Writers and Editors War Tax Protest” pledge, vowing to refuse tax payments in protest against the Vietnam War.[3] In the mid-1980s, he was a leader of Berkeley's Faculty for Full Divestment and president of Harvard-Radcliffe Alumni/-ae Against Apartheid. In 2013, he became involved in the alumni wing of the Divest Harvard [4] movement, seeking the university's exit from fossil fuel corporations.

Academic career

Gitlin graduated as valedictorian of the Bronx High School of Science, one of New York City's elite public high schools. Enrolling at Harvard College, he graduated with an A.B. degree in mathematics. After his leadership in SDS, he earned graduate degrees from the University of Michigan (political science) and the University of California, Berkeley (sociology).

He served as professor of sociology and director of the mass communications program at UC Berkeley, then a professor of culture, journalism and sociology at New York University. He is now a professor of journalism and sociology and chair of the Ph.D. program in Communications at Columbia University. During 1994-95, he held the chair in American Civilization at the École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales in Paris. He has been a resident at the Bellagio Study Center in Italy and the Djerassi Foundation in Woodside, California, a fellow at the Media Studies Center, and a visiting professor at Yale University, the University of Oslo, and the University of Toronto. From April - May 2011, Gitlin was the recipient of the Bosch Berlin Prize in Public Policy and Fellow at the American Academy in Berlin.

Public intellectual

He has written 15 books and hundreds of articles in dozens of publications, including The New York Times, Los Angeles Times, Washington Post, Boston Globe, Ha'aretz, Columbia Journalism Review, Tablet Magazine, The New Republic, Mother Jones, and many more. He has been a columnist for the San Francisco Examiner and the New York Observer, and a frequent contributor to TPMcafe and The New Republic online, as well as the "Brainstorms" section of the Chronicle of Higher Education. He is on the editorial board of Dissent. He has been co-chair of the San Francisco branch of PEN American Center, a member of the board of directors of Greenpeace, and an early editor of openDemocracy. He has given hundreds of lectures at public occasions and universities in many countries.

In his early writings on media, especially The Whole World Is Watching, he called attention to the ideological framing of the New Left and other social movements, the vexed relations of leadership and celebrity, and the impact of coverage on the movements themselves. He was the first sociologist to apply Erving Goffman's concept of "frame" to news analysis, and to show Antonio Gramsci's "hegemony" at work in a detailed analysis of intellectual production. In Inside Prime Time, he analyzed the workings of the television entertainment industry of the early 1980s, discerning the implicit procedures that guide network executives and other television "players" to make their decisions. In The Sixties: Years of Hope, Days of Rage, a memoir and analysis combined, he developed a sense of the tensions between expressive and strategic politics. In The Twilight of Common Dreams he asked why the groups that constitute the American left so often turn to infighting rather than solidarity. In Media Unlimited, he turned to the unceasing flow of the media torrent, the problems of attention and distraction, and the emotional payoffs of media experience (which he called "disposable emotions") in our time. In Occupy Nation: The Roots, the Spirit, and the Promise of Occupy Wall Street, he distinguished between "inner" and "outer" movements, analyzing their respective strengths and weaknesses.

In The Whole World Is Watching: Mass Media in the Making and Unmaking of the New Left, The Sixties, The Twilight of Common Dreams: Why America Is Wracked with Culture Wars, Letters to a Young Activist, and The Intellectuals and the Flag, Gitlin became a prominent critic of the tactics and rhetoric of the Left as well as the Right. While continuing to support active, strategically focused nonviolent movements, he emphasizes what he sees as the need in American politics to form coalitions between disparate movements, which must compromise ideological purity to gain and sustain power by working together within the two major political parties. During the George W. Bush administration, he argued that the Republican party managed to accomplish this with a coalition of what he called two "major components - the low-tax, love-business, hate-government enthusiasts and the God-save-us moral crusaders" but that the Democratic Party has often been unable to accomplish a pragmatic coalition between its "roughly eight" constituencies, which he identifies as "labor, African Americans, Hispanics, feminists, gays, environmentalists, members of the helping professions (teachers, social workers, nurses), and the militantly liberal, especially antiwar denizens of avant-garde cultural zones such as university towns, the Upper West Side of Manhattan, and so on." (from The Bulldozer and the Big Tent, pp. 18–19).

In The Chosen Peoples: America, Israel, and the Ordeals of Divine Election, he and Liel Leibovitz traced parallel themes in the history of the Jews and the Americans through history down to the present.


“ My generation of the New Left — a generation that grew as the [Vietnam] war went on — relinquished any title to patriotism without much sense of loss. All that was left to the Left was to unearth righteous traditions and cultivate them in universities. The much-mocked political correctness of the next academic generations was a consolation prize. We lost — we squandered the politics — but won the textbooks. ”
~ from Varieties of Patriotic Experience

“ ...those who still cling to gauzy dreams about untainted militancy need to remember all the murders committed in the name of various radical ideologies that accomplished exactly nothing for the victims of racism. ”
~ from "Paraphrasing the '60s" Los Angeles Times, January 27, 2007


Uptown: Poor Whites in Chicago (1970) ISBN 0-06-090235-3 (with Nanci Hollander)
Campfires of the Resistance: Poetry from the Movement, editor (1971)
Busy Being Born (1974) ISBN 0-87932-073-7
The Whole World is Watching: Mass Media in the Making and Unmaking of the Left (1980) ISBN 0-520-23932-6
Inside Prime Time (1983) ISBN 0-520-21785-3
The Sixties: Years of Hope, Days of Rage (1987) ISBN 0-553-37212-2
Watching Television, editor (1987) ISBN 0-394-54496-X
The Murder of Albert Einstein (1992) ISBN 0-553-37366-8
The Twilight of Common Dreams: Why America is Wracked by Culture Wars (1995) ISBN 0-8050-4091-9.
Sacrifice (1999) ISBN 0-8050-6032-4
Media Unlimited: How the Torrent of Images and Sounds Overwhelms Our Lives (2002) ISBN 0-8050-7283-7
Letters To a Young Activist (2003) ISBN 0-465-02738-5
The Intellectuals and the Flag (2006) ISBN 0-231-12492-9
The Bulldozer and the Big Tent (2007) ISBN 0-471-74853-6
The Chosen Peoples: America, Israel, and the Ordeals of Divine Election (2010) ISBN 1-4391-3235-6 (with Liel Leibovitz)
Undying (2011) ISBN 978-1-58243-646-3
Occupy Nation: The Roots, the Spirit, and the Promise of Occupy Wall Street (2012) ISBN 0-553-37212-2

Essays and Journalism

"A Charter for the 99 Percent," ... 99-percent
"The Washington Post Doesn't Need a New-Media Mogul—It Needs an Old-Fashioned One,"
"How WikiLeaks Beat the Mainstream Media," ... ileaks-won


"Bio: Todd Gitlin", NNDB
Sale, Kirkpatrick, SDS (New York: Random House, 1973), pp. 153–54.
“Writers and Editors War Tax Protest” January 30, 1968 New York Post
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Re: AN unREASONABLE MAN, directed by Henriette Mantel

Postby admin » Mon Jul 27, 2015 1:33 am

The CIA’s Student-Activism Phase
In the 1960s, the agency sought to fight Communism through the students’ rights movement. There’s little reason to think its tactics have changed.
By Tom Hayden
NOVEMBER 26, 2014



(Reuters/Larry Downing)

Only once in a while does a book come along that sheds new light on the 1960s. Karen Paget’s forthcoming Patriotic Betrayal (Yale University Press) is just such a work, telling the inside story of how the Central Intelligence Agency corrupted the natural and democratic growth of students’ rights movement by infiltrating the National Student Association (NSA) and directing it to its Cold War ends.

The story begins in the 1950s, which may leave some to wonder if it’s not a stale and useless tale by now. It’s relevant today, however, because of the cancerous growth of Big Brother surveillance and the proliferation of clandestine operations branded in the name of “democracy promotion,” from Cuba to the Ukraine. The pervasive rise of secret money in campaigns, moreover, makes it impossible to know whether operatives of our intelligence agencies have any role in harassing radicals or steering social movements, or whether such roles have been passed to private foundations. Democracy is increasingly in the dark. Any light from history can serve as high-beams to illuminate the future.

My personal involvement in this story begins in the late 1950s, when I was a student editor at The Michigan Daily, the University of Michigan’s student paper. In those fallow years, I was a developing idealist who did not know that the CIA had begun recruiting students for its secret war against the Soviet Union. In 1960, I hitchhiked to the University of California, Berkeley, to write about the new student movement there. In the Bay Area, students protesting the House Un-American Activities Committee were beaten, hosed and washed down the steps of City Hall. They were developing the first campus political party at Berkeley, known as SLATE. They were fighting for the right of student governments to take stands on “off-campus” issues like racial segregation everywhere from San Francisco’s downtown hotels to Mississippi. They were in the process of becoming the Free Speech Movement and the Vietnam Day Committee of 1964 and 1965.

I spent an exhilarating summer staying in an apartment full of Berkeley radicals. One of the many visitors I met was Donald Hoffman, who represented the National Student Association, which included members of student government and Daily editors that met every summer. He was a bit older than me, a friendly liberal fellow who wanted to make sure that Berkeley students came to that summer’s national convention. He also was a CIA agent, and remained so for many decades.

The editor of the Daily before me, Peter Eckstein, was enlisted by the CIA to direct its recruiting operations, which targeted student activists in Europe who had been attracted to Soviet-sponsored youth festivals. Peter was preceded by another Daily editor, Harry Lunn, who became a lifetime CIA operative in many postings around the world.

In 1962, curious about these youth festivals and eager to see the world, I interviewed as a possible participant in an American (anti-communist) delegation to the Soviet-sponsored Helsinki Youth Festival in Finland, one of several of the era. Their purpose was to confront the communist delegates with a counter-narrative about American democracy and firmly oppose any rapprochement or coexistence between capitalism and communism. Neutralism in the Cold War was considered as being “soft” on Communism.

In the end, I didn’t attend. But I will never forget the smart, attractive woman who interviewed me. A graduate of Smith College, her name was Gloria Steinem. This was one year before she worked at the Playboy Club in New York City and six years before she wrote “A Bunny’s Tale” in Show magazine and described herself as an “active feminist” in 1969.

The CIA’s Harry Lunn, according to Patriotic Betrayal, encouraged Steinem to become “the public face of the Independent Service for Information,” an anti-communist delegation controlled and funded by the CIA, on the Vienna Youth Festival; by early 1959, it had been renamed the Independent Research Service. She was “one of the few women in the NSA-CIA club,” Paget writes, noting that “Steinem, who knowingly cooperated with the CIA, is sensitive today about her work with the Agency.”

Steinem recruited about one hundred Americans into a delegation to confront the 17,000 youth at the 1959 Vienna Youth Festival under the banners of Marxism and national liberation. Her bloc employed dirty tricks to disrupt the proceedings, including distributing anti-communist propaganda to fill a shortage of toilet paper and invading discussion groups to attack communist dogma. Pleased with her work in Vienna, the CIA sent Steinem to lead a similar delegation to Helsinki in 1962, where the CIA courted African students with American jazz and, according to Paget, left “memorable images of Steinem parting the beaded curtains to enter the nightclub as if she was Mata Hari.”

Another figure I met at the turn of the 1960s was Allard Lowenstein, who had attended every NSA conference since the group’s inception and had obscure but real connections to State Department and CIA powers behind the scenes. Lowenstein courageously helped smuggle black South Africans into the West, was an adviser to the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee during Mississippi Summer in 1964, led the national “Dump Johnson” campaign in 1967 and 1968, was elected to Congress in 1968, and eventually was murdered in 1980 by a disturbed protégé, Dennis Sweeney, who claimed that Lowenstein had planted a communication device in his teeth.

Personally, I never made it into a CIA front group, though I tried hard enough. I was “unwitting,” in spook-speak. “Witting” was what the agency called people in the know. They first tested and recruited them into high positions in the student world, then administered a surprise security oath before telling them they were part of the CIA.

Under the guise of the NSA, the CIA recruited me to write a pamphlet on the student civil-rights movement (“Revolution in Mississippi,” 1961) for global distribution. They rejected the pamphlet without saying why, leaving it to be published by Students for a Democratic Society. They also rejected me for an International Student Research Seminar in Philadelphia, which I learned was a vetting ground for future agents. In response, I organized a campaign at the NSA convention that summer against the “secret elite” whom I accused of running the convention. Out of that split came my decision to work full-time for SDS as a field secretary and later president. To this day, I don’t know if the Port Huron Statement would have been written if I had been co-opted into an NSA front.

Finally, the inner contradictions became so great that an NSA insider leaked the CIA story to Ramparts magazine in 1967, causing a huge scandal and the disintegration of the NSA into a shell of its former self.

So that’s the personal history. Paget, the author of Patriotic Betrayal and now a recognized Bay Area political scientist and writer, went through those same activist years as a witting participant in the NSA along with her husband, Michael Enwall. Her husband lost an NSA election by one vote in 1965, sparking a growing suspicion about where power lay. She has spent years perusing documents and interviewing former NSA leaders to reveal a story that many insider may not wish to be told.

In recent e-mail correspondence, I asked her to clear up a long-time mystery among historians and activists: whether Allard Lowenstein was a CIA agent. “The evidence is overwhelming,” she wrote, that Lowenstein was “not the prime mover or instigator of the CIA relationship.” Nor does she believe he signed a security oath under the CIA’s recruitment program, which was known as Covert Action 5. But Paget’s research led her to conclude that Lowenstein “knew but wasn’t witting”—that is, was aware of the CIA funding but was an independent player, sometimes a thorn in the Agency’s side.

Two other conclusions about Lowenstein can be drawn from Paget’s research. Like Steinem, he was a hardline cold warrior who wanted to build an aggressive liberal, anti-communist movement against the Soviets. That meant supporting the Cold War instead of coexistence strategies then promoted by Sweden’s Olof Palme, a student leader who became the country’s long-time neutralist prime minister before his murder in 1986. Second, Lowenstein went out of his way to block the Ramparts story from being published, joining a 1967 meeting of CIA and NSA officials considering how to manage the story if it was leaked. Lowenstein argued that the Ramparts story would leave “blood on [their] hands” and “many people would be killed” if it was confirmed. Paget writes that “[t]oday none of the NSA officers who were present can explain Lowenstein’s involvement.” Lowenstein, she says, also went to the White House, where he was asked by Walt Rostow, Lyndon B. Johnson’s national security adviser, to draft a reply to the Ramparts story if it came out.

* * *

One conclusion from this history is that the CIA’s illegal infiltration of domestic political groups began long before 9/11 and the present “War on Terrorism.” It has been a rogue agency for a very long time, masking its agenda by claiming that domestic spying is justified as part of its global duties. Just as the control of NSA was justified for “foreign policy” reasons, so has its wiretapping and spying on domestic sources been justified on the grounds of monitoring international terrorism.

Second, the CIA-NSA revelations created a permanent climate of paranoia among progressives who would never know again who might be “witting.” After the many CIA scandals of the 1970s, both political parties created partisan institutes to channel millions of taxpayer dollars to NGOs in countries struggling with democracy issues. The differences are blurred between the CIA and the US Agency for International Development, which spends an annual $20 million on covert “democracy promotion” in Cuba alone. Similar programs are aimed at Russia, Venezuela, and various “color” revolutions in the former Eastern Europe. The United States cannot credibly claim a clean foreign policy, and fuels a global opposition to its double standards.

The real-world consequences of these manipulations of student politics are still with us. Here are three examples from Paget’s history:

Supporting Saddam Hussein in Iraq. Saddam Hussein was a CIA operative whom the American spy agency deployed in 1959 to kill the ruler of Iraq, Abdul Karim Kassem. When that assassination attempt failed, Saddam entered a CIA protection program in Egypt until his Baath Party, also supported by the CIA, seized power in 1963. At least 5,000 Iraqis, most of them student activists, were executed immediately by the Baathist regime. And so our Iraq War began.

In those years, the NSA’s secret elite encouraged the NSA Congress to celebrate the Ba’athist coups in Iraq and Syria. The Cold War rationale for ousting Kassem was that he tolerated communists in his governing coalition. (The same rationale was given for the 1954 coups in Iran and Guatemala.) Kassem was executed by a firing squad. Many of the student victims of the new repression were members of the General Union of Iraqi Students. The NSA staff, according to Paget, “turned in hundreds of reports that contained assessments of foreign students” to the CIA, which were fed to the new regime’s security apparatus. It’s “a fact that today haunts many of them,” she says. In Iran, similar lists of human targets were prepared; “the witting NSA staff did not seem to understand the danger posed to Iranian students by their constant reporting on them.”

Subverting Cuba. After briefly supporting the Cuban revolution in the 1950s, the NSA the CIA secretly decided to counter Fidel Castro’s appeal to Latin American students. Months after the failed 1961 invasion at the Bay of Pigs, the NSA leadership and the conservative Young Americans for Freedom both invited Cuban exiles to woo the delegates to the anti-communist side at the 1961 Congress. Both Cuban exile speakers were on the CIA’s payroll. The “preferred” exile was Juan Manuel Salvat, a former student leader who had broken with the Revolution, was imprisoned, fled to Miami and returned in the Bay of Pigs invasion. The same Salvat went on to pioneer the “Mongoose” hit-and-run attacks on Cuba, including an attempt to blow up a Havana hotel where Fidel had a meeting. By 1962, the US policy of “no more Cubas” in the hemisphere had fostered a wave of right-wing dictatorships and a defection of Latin American student unions to the leftist International Union of Students.

Arresting Nelson Mandela. The CIA arranged for the arrest and lifetime sentence of Nelson Mandela in 1962. The same NSA helped organize the South African student opposition to Mandela’s African National Congress (ANC), known as the National Union of Southern African Students (NUSAS). The US’s objection was that the ANC youth had affiliated themselves with the Soviet-sponsored student movements and South Africa’s Communist Party. The NSA funded NUSAS starting in the late 1950s with grants from a CIA-related foundation.

In today’s world of official religious fanaticism, corruption and repression, it should be easy for the United States to improve and project our democracy as an alternative. Instead, the CIA is spying on our allies, secret military operations take place in multiple nations, and “democracy” is all to often seeded by agents of the Drug Enforcement Administration, the CIA, or the NSA. As many reports reveal, the CIA continues to cultivate “assets” in the mainstream media, and meets with top editors to to discourage or delay the publication of controversial news. The lesson of Paget’s book is that there is a deeper housekeeping that needs to be done at every level before the United States can offer democracy as a formula. It may be impossible.
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Re: AN unREASONABLE MAN, directed by Henriette Mantel

Postby admin » Mon Jul 27, 2015 1:37 am

When the Student Movement Was a CIA Front
APRIL 14, 2015



The CIA's manipulation of the National Student Association foreshadowed other forms of Cold War blowback that compromised democracy at home.

Bob Wands/AP Images
Gloria Steinem went from willing CIA accomplice to feminist icon.

This book review appears in the Winter 2015 issue of The American Prospect magazine. Subscribe here.
Patriotic Betrayal: The Inside Story of the CIA's Secret Campaign to Enroll American Students in the Crusade Against Communism
By Karen M. Paget
552 pp. Yale University Press $35

In its March 1967 issue, Ramparts, a glossy West Coast muckraking periodical that expired in 1975, and that strongly opposed American involvement in the war in Vietnam, published an exposé of the close relationship between the Central Intelligence Agency and the National Student Association. This other NSA—not to be confused with the National Security Agency—was then the leading American organization representing college students, with branches on about 400 campuses. Its ties with the CIA were formed in the early years of both institutions following World War II, as the Cold War was getting under way.

According to Ramparts, the CIA had been providing much of the funding for the NSA through various “conduits.” NSA officers, many of them wittingly, had served the interests of the CIA by participating actively in international youth and student movements. The NSA’s activities were financed by the Agency both to counter communist influence and also to provide information on people from other countries with whom they came in contact. The disclosures about the CIA’s ties to the NSA were the most sensational of a number of revelations in that era that exposed the Agency’s involvement in such institutions as the Congress for Cultural Freedom; the International Commission of Jurists; the AFL-CIO; Radio Free Europe; and various leading philanthropic foundations. Karen Paget’s new book, Patriotic Betrayal, is the most detailed account yet of the CIA’s use of the National Student Association as a vehicle for intelligence gathering and covert action. (See author’s endnote.)

With the passage of half a century, it may be difficult to understand why so many political and cultural organizations, led by individuals with a generally liberal or leftist outlook, covertly collaborated with the CIA in the 1950s and first half of the 1960s, before exposés in Ramparts and other publications put an end to most such arrangements. After all, many of the activities of the Agency in that era are among those that we now regard as particularly discreditable. These include the CIA’s cooperation with the British intelligence services in overthrowing the democratically elected government of Iranian Prime Minister Mohammed Mossadegh in 1953; its cooperation with the United Fruit Company in overthrowing the democratically elected government of Guatemalan President Jacobo Arbenz in 1954; and its cooperation with the Republic of the Congo’s former colonial rulers, the Belgians, in overthrowing the country’s newly elected prime minister, Patrice Lumumba, in 1960.

Several factors seem to me to have played a part. Press reporting on these events in that era tended not to focus on the role of the CIA. It was only years later, after the Senate’s 1975-1976 Church Committee investigations, after long-after-the-fact investigations by journalists and scholars, and after the mid-1980s development of the National Security Archive and its extensive and effective use of the Freedom of Information Act, that many otherwise well-informed Americans grasped the role of the CIA in these events.

Also during the 1950s and the 1960s, the CIA, paradoxically, was the federal agency that seemed most ready to enlist liberals and leftists in its activities. In contrast, the State Department, which had been the main target of Senator Joseph McCarthy’s attacks on those he accused of being communist sympathizers, probably would not have risked involvement with many of the young people who collaborated with the CIA. Above all, there was the atmosphere created by the Cold War. It was a struggle that had to be won, not only on the military battlefield, but also in intellectual and ideological combat with the communists.

Finally, it may be that covert activities had their own appeal. Those who were in on the secret were an elite, deriving satisfaction comparable to that provided by membership in an exclusive club.

This was also a period in which many other Americans with similar views collaborated with the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the CIA’s counterpart in the domestic intelligence field. In this era, the Bureau relied extensively on informers to accumulate its vast dossiers on the political associations and personal lives of millions of Americans. When I was executive director of the American Civil Liberties Union in the 1970s, we discovered through documents we obtained under the Freedom of Information Act that three officials of the ACLU in the 1950s had given the FBI information on others within the ACLU they suspected of being communists. They seem to have rationalized their conduct, at least in part, on the basis that cooperation with the FBI would help protect the ACLU against irresponsible congressional investigative bodies such as the House Un-American Activities Committee. The FBI’s COINTELPRO, a program the Bureau established secretly in 1956 to foster jealousies and feuds in organizations whose activities the Bureau wished to disrupt, depended in part on its ability to collect personal data from informers within those organizations. The atmosphere created by the Cold War, in which the FBI and its allies in Congress and the media portrayed domestic subversives allied with foreign enemies as being the greatest threat to the United States, probably played a large part in persuading so many Americans to act as informers.

A number of young CIA collaborators who figure in Paget’s story later achieved prominence. One of the book’s virtues is that we get a clear picture of how well-educated and successful young Americans got involved in clandestine activities, and how they conducted themselves. But a frustrating aspect of the book is that, in most cases, Paget does not mention their subsequent careers. At least one leading academic figure’s undisclosed youthful relationship with the CIA could be considered relevant to his later published work.

One of those collaborators Paget discusses is Allard Lowenstein, president of the NSA from 1950 to 1951, who became a leading civil rights and anti-war activist, a one-term member of Congress, and the organizer of the “Dump Johnson” movement that helped deter President Lyndon Johnson from running for re-election in 1968. A charismatic figure, he inspired many others to become activists in the causes that mattered to him. In 1980, Lowenstein was assassinated in his office by a deranged gunman who had become obsessed with him. Though some have previously speculated that Lowenstein initiated the NSA relationship with the CIA, Paget’s research does not support this view. She finds that he may have obstructed such a relationship, and, if it took place when he was a leader of the NSA, he was probably not aware. Following the Ramparts disclosures, when 12 former presidents of the NSA issued a press release defending the covert relationship with the Agency, Lowenstein did not sign. Among those rumored or confirmed to have covertly collaborated with the CIA, Lowenstein stands out in Paget’s book as the principal figure whom she clears of suspicion.

In discussing Robert Kiley, who was vice president of the NSA from 1957 to 1958, Paget never mentions that he eventually became a leading figure in urban transit, heading New York City’s Metropolitan Transportation Authority and then, on the other side of the Atlantic, heading London Regional Transport. Paget discusses only how Kiley as a student leader cooperated closely with the CIA and subsequently went to work directly for the Agency, playing a leading role in identifying Africans who might collaborate with it. During his tenure on the CIA staff, in which he rose to become an aide to Director Richard Helms, Kiley helped manage the relationship with the student organization of which he had previously been an officer, sometimes in what seems a heavy-handed way.

Of those mentioned by Paget as knowing participants in the relationship between the NSA and the CIA, the most lustrous name is that of Gloria Steinem. Her connection has long been known. She acknowledged it following the disclosures by Ramparts. Steinem then told Newsweek: “In the CIA, I finally found a group of people who understood how important it was to represent the diversity of our government’s ideas at Communist festivals. If I had the choice, I would do it again.” Operating through a CIA front organization, established in cooperation with former NSA officers, Steinem recruited young Americans to participate in the 1959 communist-organized World Youth Festival in Vienna, and did the same a couple of years later when another such festival was held in Helsinki. Apparently, she did her job well, choosing American participants who were very effective in countering the communists. To her credit, Steinem, unlike several others, was candid; and this history hardly implicates the CIA in the rise of feminism.

Paul Sigmund, a longtime professor of politics at Princeton, died last April at the age of 85. He was particularly known for his many books and articles on Latin America, especially Chile. Sigmund wrote extensively about the overthrow of the Salvador Allende regime in Chile, which brought General Augusto Pinochet to power. In a lengthy article in the January 1974 Foreign Affairs, he attributed the September 1973 coup to Allende’s misdeeds. He argued: “What [the Allende government] cannot do is blame all its problems on foreign imperialists and their domestic allies, and ignore elementary principles of economic rationality and effective political legitimacy in its internal policies. No amount of foreign assistance can be a substitute for these, and no amount of foreign subversion or economic pressure can destroy them if they exist.”

According to Paget, Sigmund collaborated with the CIA over a period of several years. His role included drafting a plan for a six-week summer seminar conducted by a front group through which the Agency could screen other students who might be enlisted in its activities. (Sigmund’s relationship to the CIA had come to light in the wake of the Ramparts exposé, but he did not cite it years later when he wrote about these events in which the CIA played a leading role.) Paget, though, does not mention Sigmund’s subsequent career. She interviewed him and says, “He explained his willingness to cooperate with the CIA in pragmatic terms: ‘It kept me out of Korea.’” Whatever his motivations, the question arises whether Sigmund’s relationship to the Agency in the 1950s affected his subsequent scholarly work. We learned a long time ago that the Nixon administration primarily relied on the CIA to promote the overthrow of Allende. Should the professor of politics at Princeton have acknowledged his own past relationship with the CIA in an essay rebutting allegations of a central U.S. role in what happened in Chile? How would such a disclosure have affected reader assessment of his Foreign Affairs essay and his other writing on the subject?

Among the other NSA leaders named by Paget who subsequently became prominent are James P. Grant, the longtime and widely admired executive director of UNICEF who died in 1995; James Scott, professor of political science and anthropology at Yale who is highly regarded for his writing on Southeast Asia; Crawford Young, professor of political science at the University of Wisconsin and well-known scholar of African studies; Luigi Einaudi, an American diplomat who served as acting secretary general of the Organization of American States; and Duncan Kennedy, professor of law at Harvard, whose emergence as a leading critical theorist is mentioned by Paget and who has been open about his onetime association with the CIA.

Should disclosure of such relationships be considered obligatory for those who present themselves as independent scholars? Certainly, it should be incumbent on someone like Sigmund to disclose his covert connection to the CIA. Even if that relationship was long past, writing an essay exculpating that agency from a charge of subversion without such disclosure raises ethical issues.

Aside from whether such persons should subsequently disclose that they once had a covert connection to the CIA, there is the question of whether it was appropriate to enter into such a relationship in the first place. Certainly, there was an idealistic component. Countering communism, I believed at the time and still do today, was the right thing to do. Yet doing so by covertly manipulating domestic organizations compromised American freedom of association. This contradiction, as more and more students came to oppose the Vietnam War, led to the eventual rupture of the NSA and its CIA patrons.

We don’t know how the constituents of the NSA would have felt about their officers’ secret relationship with the CIA. What we can surmise, however, is that some would have been strongly opposed. The NSA’s members could not debate whether to enter into the relationship, and those opposed could not express their views because they were not in on the secret. Disclosure would have killed the program. Whatever one thinks about the importance of having had such means to wage the battles of the Cold War, it seems difficult to justify the deception that was central to its operation.

Author’s Note: I was not shocked by the disclosures in Ramparts. Though I lacked definite information, I had been generally aware that there was a relationship between the CIA and the NSA. In 1957, as a student at Cornell, I became national president of the Student League for Industrial Democracy, a small organization with a social democratic bent that had chapters on several college campuses. Paget describes SLID as “fiercely anticommunist.” Yes, but we were also civil libertarians and vigorously opposed the college bans on communist speakers prevalent in that era. In 1959, I took the lead in relaunching SLID as Students for a Democratic Society, but I soon lost influence in SDS to Tom Hayden and others, who took it in a more radical direction. These activities put me in contact with some leaders of the NSA named by Paget. Though I did not know who wittingly collaborated with the Agency, I recall being quite sure that the Foundation for Youth and Student Affairs, the main source of funding for the NSA, was a CIA front.

As Karen Paget notes in her “Acknowledgments,” her early work on this book was supported by a fellowship from the Open Society Institute when I was its president.
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Re: AN unREASONABLE MAN, directed by Henriette Mantel

Postby admin » Mon Jul 27, 2015 1:40 am

Gloria Steinem - How The CIA Used Feminism To Destabilize Society
By Henry Makow, Ph.D.



"In the 1960´s, the elite media invented second-wave feminism as part of the elite agenda to dismantle civilization and create a New World Order."

Since writing these words last week, I have discovered that before she became a feminist leader, Gloria Steinem worked for the CIA spying on Marxist students in Europe and disrupting their meetings. She became a media darling due to her CIA connections. MS Magazine, which she edited for many years was indirectly funded by the CIA.

Steinem has tried to suppress this information, unearthed in the 1970´s by a radical feminist group called "Red Stockings." In 1979, Steinem and her powerful CIA-connected friends, Katharine Graham of the Washington Post and Ford Foundation President Franklin Thomas prevented Random House from publishing it in "Feminist Revolution." Nevertheless the story appeared in the "Village Voice" on May 21, 1979.

Steinem has always pretended that she had been a student radical. "When I was in college, it was the McCarthy era," she told Susan Mitchell in 1997, "and that made me a Marxist." (Icons, Saints and Divas: Intimate Conversations with Women who Changed the World 1997. p 130) Her bio-blurb in June 1973 MS. Magazine states: "Gloria Steinem has been a freelance writer all her professional life. Ms magazine is her first full-time salaried job."

Not true. Raised in an impoverished, dysfunctional family in Toledo Ohio, Steinem somehow managed to attend elite Smith College, Betty Friedan´s alma mater. After graduating in 1955, Steinem received a "Chester Bowles Student Fellowship" to study in India. Curiously, an Internet search reveals that this fellowship has no existence apart from Gloria Steinem. No one else has received it.

In 1958, Steinem was recruited by CIA´s Cord Meyers to direct an "informal group of activists" called the "Independent Research Service." This was part of Meyer´s "Congress for Cultural Freedom," which created magazines like "Encounter" and "Partisan Review" to promote a left-liberal chic to oppose Marxism. Steinem, attended Communist-sponsored youth festivals in Europe, published a newspaper, reported on other participants, and helped to provoke riots.

One of Steinem´s CIA colleagues was Clay Felker. In the early 1960´s, he became an editor at Esquire and published articles by Steinem which established her as a leading voice for women´s lib. In 1968, as publisher of New York Magazine, he hired her as a contributing editor, and then editor of Ms. Magazine in 1971. Warner Communications put up almost all the money although it only took 25% of the stock. Ms. Magazine´s first publisher was Elizabeth Forsling Harris, a CIA-connected PR executive who planned John Kennedy´s Dallas motorcade route. Despite its anti establishment image, MS magazine attracted advertising from the crème of corporate America. It published ads for ITT at the same time as women political prisoners in Chile were being tortured by Pinochet, after a coup inspired by the US conglomerate and the CIA.

Steinem´s personal relationships also belie her anti establishment pretensions. She had a nine-year relationship with Stanley Pottinger, a Nixon-Ford assistant attorney general, credited with stalling FBI investigations into the assassinations of Martin Luther King, and the ex-Chilean Foreign Minister Orlando Latelier. In the 1980´s, she dated Henry Kissinger. For more details, see San Francisco researcher Dave Emory.

Our main misconception about the CIA is that it serves US interests. In fact, it has always been the instrument of a dynastic international banking and oil elite (Rothschild, Rockefeller, Morgan) coordinated by the Royal Institute for Internal Affairs in London and their US branch, the Council for Foreign Relations. It was established and peopled by blue bloods from the New York banking establishment and graduates of Yale University´s secret pagan "Skull and Bones" society. Our current President, his father and grandfather fit this profile.

The agenda of this international cabal is to degrade the institutions and values of the United States in order to integrate it into a global state that it will direct through the United Nations. In its 1947 Founding Charter, the CIA is prohibited from engaging in domestic activities. However this has never stopped it from waging a psychological war on the American people. The domestic counterpart of the "Congress for Cultural Freedom" was the "American Committee for Cultural Freedom." Using foundations as conduits, the CIA controlled intellectual discourse in the 1950´s and 1960´s, and I believe continues to do so today. In The The Cultural Cold War: The CIA and the World of Arts and Letters, Francis Stonor Saunders estimates that a thousand books were produced under the imprint of a variety of commercial and university presses, with covert subsidies.

The CIA´s "Project Mockingbird" involved the direct infiltration of the corporate media, a process that often included direct takeover of major news outlets. "By the early 1950´s," writes Deborah Davis, in her book Katharine the Great : Katharine Graham and Her Washington Post Empire, the CIA owned respected members of the New York Times, Newsweek, CBS and other communication vehicles, plus stringers, four to six hundred in all." In 1982 the CIA admitted that reporters on the CIA payroll have acted as case officers to agents in the field. Philip Graham, publisher of the Washington Post, who ran the operation until his "suicide" in 1963, boasted that "you could get a journalist cheaper than a good call girl, for a couple of hundred dollars a month."

I was born in 1949. Idealists in my parent´s generation were disillusioned when the Communist dream of universal brotherhood turned out to be a shill for a brutal despotism. My own generation may discover that our best instincts have also been manipulated and exploited. There is evidence that the 60´s drug counter culture, the civil rights movement, and anti-war movement, like feminism, were CIA directed. For example, the CIA has admitted setting up the National Student Association as a front in 1947. In the early 1950´s the NSA opposed the attempts of the House Un American Activities Committee to root out Communist spies. According to Phil Agee Jr., NSA officers participated in the activities of SNCC, the militant civil rights group, and Students for a Democratic Society, a radical peace group.

According to Mark Riebling, the CIA also may have used Timothy Leary. Certainly the agency distributed LSD to Leary and other opinion makers in the 1960s. Leary made a generation of Americans turn away from active participation in society and seek fulfillment "within." In another example of the CIA´s use of drugs to interfere in domestic politics, Gary Webb describes how in the 1980´s, the CIA flooded Black ghettos with cocaine.

I won´t attempt to analyze the CIA´s motivation except to suggest what these acts have in common: They demoralized, alienated and divided Americans. The elite operates by fostering division and conflict in the world. Thus, we don´t realize who the real enemy is. For the same reason, the CIA and elite foundations also fund the diversity and multi cultural movements.

Feminism has done the most damage. There is no more fundamental yet delicate relationship in society than male and female. On it depends the family, the red blood cell of society. Nobody with the interests of society at heart would try to divide men and women. Yet the lie that men have exploited women has become the official orthodoxy.

Man loves woman. His first instinct is to nurture ("husband") and see her thrive. When a woman is happy, she is beautiful. Sure, some men are abusive. But the vast majority have supported and guided their families for millennium.

Feminists relentlessly advance the idea that our inherent male and female characteristics, crucial to our development as human beings, are mere "stereotypes." This is a vicious calumny on all heterosexuals, 95% of the population. Talk about hate! Yet it is taught to children in elementary schools! It is echoed in the media. Lesbians like Rosie O´Donnell are advanced as role models.

All of this is calculated to create personal confusion and sow chaos among heterosexuals. As a result, millions of American males are emasculated and divorced from their relationship to family (the world and the future.) The American woman has been hoodwinked into investing herself in a mundane career instead of the timeless love of her husband and children. Many women have become temperamentally unfit to be wives and mothers. People, who are isolated and alone, stunted and love-starved, are easy to fool and manipulate. Without the healthy influence of two loving parents, so are their children.

Feminism is a grotesque fraud perpetrated on society by its governing elite. It is designed to weaken the American social and cultural fabric in order to introduce a friendly fascist New World Order. Its advocates are sanctimonious charlatans who have grown rich and powerful from it. They include a whole class of liars and moral cripples who work for the elite in various capacities: government, education and the media. These imposters ought to be exposed and ridiculed.

Women´s oppression is a lie. Sex roles were never as rigid as feminists would have us believe. My mother had a successful business in the 1950´s importing watch straps from Switzerland. When my father´s income increased, she was content to quit and concentrate on the children. Women were free to pursue careers if they wanted to. The difference was that their role as wife and mother was understood, and socially validated, as it should be.

Until Gloria Steinem and the CIA came along.
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Re: AN unREASONABLE MAN, directed by Henriette Mantel

Postby admin » Mon Jul 27, 2015 2:08 am

American Jews and Israel
Dissent, Spring, 2011



In the world I was born into, Israel was an emotion wrapped in an idea. Simply by existing, the Jewish state was a portal to deliverance, and since I had been carried through that portal at birth, so to speak, a sense of deliverance was my default emotion. I was a war baby, which is to say, born at a moment when the Jews of Europe (including many relatives, though none close) were being slaughtered, and from then on, back to the earliest time when I can remember any awareness of a larger world, raised in the knowledge that I belonged to a people devastated “in the war,” as my grandmother used to say, the horrors not yet having been designated with that wrongly sacralized one-word name “Holocaust.” But, as in the ancient redemptions, the founding of storybook Israel was the lyrical restart moment; the happiest possible ending (or beginning of an ending) to the grimmest possible story.

Today, the state of Israel feels to me like a personal trauma, a huge, heartbreaking disappointment, a world-historical opportunity forgone, a danger to the Jews, a burden—and also a nation to which, like it or not, I am fastened, where people I love and admire carry on an immensely, grievously difficult struggle for decency against tall odds.

Now, truly it is peculiar, even perverse, to speak of being disappointed, or traumatized, by a state. States are social contrivances.

However motivated by ideas, they are not those ideas in themselves, because ideas are incarnated in action, and action is tragic. Certainly states are not paradises, not centers of brotherly and sisterly love. They are systems of power, which means that there are winners and losers. They operate within what social scientists are pleased to call constraints: they are not free. They are institutional; that is, human; that is, fallible. It seems hopelessly romantic, a category error, to feel disappointment in a state or grief and outrage about what it has come to. You’d have to be mightily illusioned in the first place to feel disillusioned. A hard-headed realist would say that any preexisting condition of innocence is begging to be smashed.

And yet, the state of Israel was produced by hearts as well as minds and sustained by both, in particular the hearts of Jews like myself, whose Russian-born grandfather volunteered for the British Army’s Jewish Legion against the Ottoman Empire during the First World War. (I cherish a photo of him, taken God knows where, posing in short sleeves and short pants, with two buddies, against a backdrop depicting some generic sort of wilderness.) The portrait of Chaim Weizmann that hung in his living room was a fixture in my mental iconography, too, with Weizmann cast as a liberator and Zionism, his cause, a taken-for-granted, unproblematic good. When I sang “Ha-Tikvah” during my four years in Hebrew school, lumbering among imperfectly memorized and not-much-understood words, the national anthem swept me to devotion, longing, and relief. “Ha-Tikvah” was, to me, far more vivid and rapturous than “The StarSpangled Banner.”

by Robert Gessner
February 19, 1935
The New Masses

The Zionist movement is a Jewish Nationalist movement aiming at the establishment of a "Jewish National Home in Palestine." It dates back to the eighties when as a result of a wave of pogroms in old Russia a movement known as the "Lovers of Zion" was established. Political Zionism, however, as it is represented by the present World Zionist Organization, dates back to 1897 when the first Zionist World congress took place in Basle, Switzerland, dominated and led by Dr. Theodore Herzl, a noted Austrian journalist. Dr. Herzl and his followers as late as 1914 were still striving to obtain a "charter" for Palestine from the Turkish Sultan. For this purpose Dr. Herzl sought the aid of the ambassadors and cabinet members of the various rulers of pre-war Europe, the Czar, the Kaiser, etc. A Jewish National Bank was established in order to "buy" Palestine from the Turkish Sultan.

Zionist diplomacy went on the rocks with the birth of the Young Turkey movement in 1908 and with the overthrow of the Sultan in 1910. It was only during the World War, when the British government issued the Balfour proclamation proclaiming Palestine a Jewish National Home in order to win the Jewish masses to the Allies' side that the Zionist movement obtained a new lease on life. The British government, however, generously promised Palestine to the Arabs as well. As a means of drawing in the Arab masses in its war against Turkey, England assured the Arabs that Palestine would be part of a United Arabistan.

This double dealing has had its consequences in a number of racial outbreaks in Palestine. The British government, which still holds the League of Nations mandate over Palestine, is seeking to retain the balance of power and to appear as the "protector" now of the Arabs, now of the Jews. It has been claimed by the Zionists that the outbreaks of August, 1929, when numerous Jews and Arabs were killed, were to a great extent fomented by British agents. The League of Nations recently made a blunt declaration that Palestine will never become a Jewish National Home under the mandate.

A section of the Zionist movement -- the Revisionists -- led by Vladimir Jabotinsky has been accusing the parent Zionist body of playing England's game in Palestine instead of realizing the Herzl objective: the establishment of a Jewish State. The Revisionists have been urging defiance of Great Britain. They aim to secure this Jewish State by force, through organizing the Jewish youth into fascist bands. Jabotinsky recently arrived in the United States in order to gain a favorable hearing for the Revisionist program.

The Jewish members of the revolutionary movement have always fought Zionism as detrimental to the interests of the Jewish masses. A number of their reasons may be formulated as follows:

Zionism is a tool of British imperialism which needs Palestine for its own purposes;

Zionism is dispossessing the Arab peasants and is conducting a colonization by conquest with the aid of British bayonets;

No nation can solve its problems by emigrating to another country, even if Palestine were not so small and so thickly populated;

Zionism draws away the attention of the Jewish masses from the problems of the countries where they live;

Zionism separates them from the masses of other nationalities;

As a chauvinist movement it is a breeding ground for fascism. -- THE EDITORS.


HE WAS an ordinary Brown Shirter. Sitting in a cafe in Berlin I asked him, "Why don't you allow the Jews to participate in this reconstruction of the Fatherland?" His ordinary face showed a slight disgust at the naivete of my question. "Jews," he said, "are not Germans. Let them build up their own fatherland."

This is what 300,000 of them are attempting to do today in Palestine. Zionism is the nationalist movement of the Jews. A few have gone to await the second coming of Moses; they may be called Religious Zionists. Many have gone to make money at orange-growing or apartment-house-building; they are Capitalist Zionists. Others have gone to live communally on farms; they are Socialist Zionists, and since these are the Socialist Nationalists of the Zionist Movement they may be partially described as Pink Nazis. The Nationalist Socialists on the other hand are the Revisionists, or the Brown Nazis of Palestine. They believe in the Jewish State 100 percent, with their own Jewish army and even, I might add, a Jewish navy on the Dead Sea! The Fuehrer of the Brown Nazis in Palestine is Vladimir Jabotinsky.

Jabotinsky was born in Eastern Europe, where, it is said, "we have always for the past fifty years thought in terms of nationalism." The Zionist movement had its first following among Eastern European Jews, and today they remain the strongest adherents to the nationalist creed of Zionism. Jabotinsky was a member of Allenby's Jewish Legions that marched into Jerusalem after the departure of the Turks. Today the young, stern-faced legionnaires of Jabotinsky march through the streets and wear shirts, like their nordic brothers in Germany. In Poland I had seen them marching through the streets (side streets in the ghettoes) singing "Poland for Pilsudski, Germany for Hitler. Palestine for Jews --"

From the halo that his young legionnaires had painted about his head I had imagined Jabotinsky to be tall, angular, a Russian giant. From his oratorical reputation I had expected long, expressive hands. Upon returning to America after seven months of observing Jews in Europe, Asia and Africa I heard that Jabotinsky was on board the liner, en route to America for a lecture tour. I climbed to the first class for an interview.

Jabotinsky is no Kerensky. He is a short, squatty, unattractive man. He has large, dark eyes, a snub nose, enormous lips with the lower one protruding and a jaw that acts like the lower lip. His face slants outward, like the Neanderthal Man's.

Vladimir Jabotinsky

He announced he would speak frankly, so that Revisionism would be made clear. The skin under his eyes contracted, his lower lip went out, the jaw stiffened. "Revisionism," he began, "is naive, brutal and primitive. It is savage. You go out into the street and pick any man -- a Chinaman -- and ask him what he wants and he will say 100 percent everything. That's us. We want a Jewish Empire. Just like there is the Italian or French Empires on the Mediterranean, we want a Jewish Empire."

When I inquired into the method of securing this Jewish Empire his voice became hard and determined. "We will take no no for an answer. In your universities in America you teach that a gentleman accepts no for an answer. Well, we don't."

Jabotinsky's idea is to keep asking the English to allow him to have a Jewish Empire until the English are so groggy from saying no that in a semi-conscious condition they will feebly nod their heads in consent. This logic is based upon the belief that English diplomacy is flighty, that is, saying no to everything and then coming around to yes when they have admitted their error.

"After you've gotten the Jewish Empire," I continued, "what is it to be?"

"Palestine is to be the homeland for ten or twelve million Jews."

Palestine is, incidentally, a two-by-four country, two hours wide and four hours long by auto. The 900,000 Arabs have been long complaining, and official England is agreeing, that the 300,000 Jews are making life an unbearable sardine box. Land values have skyrocketed overnight. Dunams, which are about one-fourth of an acre, have already sold for as high as $5,000. Into this sardine box Jabotinsky means to stuff ten or twelve millions Jews. I asked what about the sixteen million in all the world. He answered that in the remaining four million he was frankly not interested! A Jewish Empire of ten or twelve million suited him.

Jabotinsky's empire, like all other empires, has territorial desires. Jabotinsky's opposition to the Jewish Agency, which is the administrative office of the World Zionist Organization, crystalized into the founding of the Revisionist Party over the question of Transjordania. Following the Arab riots of 1920 and 1921 against Jewish colonization, Winston Churchill, then Secretary for the Colonies, wrote one of those famous White papers. To appease the Arabs he divorced Transjordania from Palestine and set it up as a mandatory territory by itself with its own parliament and ruler. The Jewish Agency acquiesced to this bill of divorcement. Jabotinsky, at that time an executive member in good standing in the Agency, refused to stomach this "betrayal" of his compatriots, and consequently launched himself against Dr. Chaim Weizmann, Ben Gurion and the other Agency Judases.

Revisionism is not the proper title for his party, the Fuehrer believes. He explained that the question of a name came up at the hurried last session of his first world congress, when it was decided the last minute to call themselves revisionists because they were for a revision. But personally he believes the title should have been the Jewish State Party. I suggested Fundamental Zionists.

"Yes, we are the pure Zionists," he answered. "We go back to the first Zionists. Herzl was a Revisionist. He believed in the Jewish State."

The German Fuehrer, to establish ancestral purity for his party, called Christ a nordic!

The Jewish Fuehrer believes that since the the time of Herzl, the nineteenth-century inventor of Zionism and the First Revisionist, there have been compromises, with the result that the goal has not been attained. "But I will make no compromises," he said. "I believe in the upbuilding of the Jewish State at any cost. If we must invest three or four generations in this upbuilding then that must be done."

"But in the capitalist economy, which as you know is the basic and ruling economy of Palestine," I asked, "which class of this three or four generations is going to be sacrificed in the upbuilding of a bourgeois society?"

"It will be the workers," he admitted. "But if the Jews accept going to Palestine in the first place, then they must expect to starve, be ready to starve for the sake of the Jewish State. There must be no strikes, because strikes are monkey-wrenches thrown into the machinery reconstructing the Jewish State."

Having heard Jabotinsky's plan to control labor, I asked about the sacrifices of capital for the sake of the fatherland.

"Oh," he said, "capital and labor must suffer alike." He said this so glibly.

On this point the Jewish Fuehrer agrees with the Italian Fuehrer. This cardinal point of Jabotinsky's Corporate Jewish State was recently accepted by the Jewish Labor Party. Those "Pink Nazis," known as the Histadrut or the Jewish Federation of Labor, signed an agreement with Jabotinsky. Histadrut, which has a monopoly of control over 80 percent of all Jewish workers in Palestine, is run by its majority party, the MAPEI or Socialist Zionist Party, which is affiliated with the Second International. The Revisionists are not members of the Jewish Federation of Labor, which numbers 60,000 workers; the Revisionists have about 1,000, who are in great demand by employers, having been forbidden to strike by their Fuehrer. The Revisionists break up strikes inaugurated by Histadrut workers; there is no love lost or found between the factions. The Revisionist youth learn their strike-breaking tactics in semi-military camps, often located beside a Histadrut agricultural commune.

"I do not know why Ben Gurion [leader of MAPEI] signed the agreement," Jabotinsky answered my question. "But to me it was a great advantage, because we are weak and a minority. The Labor Party by warfare could limit us, refuse us entry certificates for our immigrants [The Palestine Government controls Jewish labor immigration by issuing limited entry certificates to the Jewish Agency for distribution]. But the Labor Party has agreed to our principle of obligatory arbitration in questions of pending strikes."

Many of the young workers in Histadrut are disgruntled with this Ben Gurion peace treaty, claiming that he sold out just when they had the Revisionists licked. Undoubtedly the Brown Nazis have been given a new lease on life by the Socialist-Zionists, just as they were given a new lease time and again by the Social Democrats in Germany. It must be remembered that MAPEI is affiliated with the Second International.

Is Jabotinsky grateful for his reprieve? "But," added the Fuehrer, "there can be no coordination between us."

Jabotinsky believes the socialist ideology unacceptable for Palestine. The "communist" colonies are "interesting but too expensive," and are "too small and scattered to have any consequence on the economic structure of Palestine." He pointed out that of the 60 odd million pounds that have been invested in Palestine only eight million have been National Fund money. Private factories, not agricultural "communist" colonies, will allow more workmen to enter and find employment. Consequently, he believes in the system already in action, namely, capitalism.

While in Tel Aviv I called on Jabotinsky's first lieutenant, Ben Horin, for an explanation of the tenets of Revisionism, since his Fuehrer was at that time not allowed to reside in the embryo Jewish State by the dictators of the more mature Empire of Britain. Ben Horin, who runs a news agency and who may be described as the Goebbels of the movement, was even more outspoken than his Fuehrer on capitalism for Palestine. "The capitalist is always in the right," he said, "because he creates jobs for Jews."

The divine right of kings had nothing on the divine right of capitalists in Palestine, because they are, ipso facto, ordained by Moses to prepare the earth for the Second Coming of the Messiah!

"The exploitation of labor," said Ben Horin, "is approved by the principle that it is aiding the establishment of the Jewish State. It is not a question of the standard of living of the Jews in the Jewish State, but of the number of Jews in the State."

The anti-labor ideology of the Revisionists stems from their common hatred of Communism. Most of them left Russia for Palestine during the years of and immediately following the Civil War.

In answer to my question of how he planned to assist the establishment of capitalism in Palestine Jabotinsky outlined his plan. First, to demand of the British tariffs to protect industry. [Palestine is a mandated country free of tariffs although certain duties of a 12 percent level have been levied.] Secondly, to demand a geological survey of waste lands to see what minerals are there for exploitation. Thirdly, to have the Palestine Government control all land settlement, instead of the Zionist Agency.

Of the practical economic future the Fuehrer was frankly stumped. "If the robot comes to Palestine we are finished. The robot will make the proletarians an obsolete class."

"The robot?" I repeated, getting very concerned about this liquidation of the proletariat. "What do you mean?"

"Technocracy, the American brand," he replied.

"Oh," I sighed, relieved. The Palestine proletariat were still safe.

"If technocracy comes to Palestine we are finished, but I do not mention any of that when I make propaganda in my speeches. I am concerned only with the Jewish State."

The American audiences of Jabotinsky will be spared a discussion on technocracy, but will not be barred from hearing the fascist refrain, the magic cure-all: the Jewish State.

"Where do 900,000 Arabs fit into the Jewish State?" I asked.

"In the colonization of any country," the Fuehrer said sadly, "the native has always suffered. There can be no Arab state if there is to be a Jewish State. In the Jewish State we would guarantee them the same rights Jews are guaranteed in other states."

A novel idea. The Arabs under the Jewish State are to be held hostages for all the remaining Jews in the Diaspora, the four million that Jabotinsky is frankly not interested in!

The Fuehrer believes there can be no compromises on the Arab question. "The dickering of Dr. Weizmann and Ben Horin is futile," he said. "You can't buy off the Arab with backshish [an Arab word meaning a tip.] The Arab can understand reason only when we have enough armed Jewish youths to lick him."

After disposing of the Arabs as so many American Indians Jabotinsky attacked the English as idiotic. Inasmuch as they are too dumb to protect the Jews Jabotinsky proposes to do it himself. "If Palestine can be settled peacefully -- all right," he said, "but I say let there be Jewish legions in the British Army in Palestine. I will supply the men and arms."

Jabotinsky was quick to add that he was not anti-British. In all the years previous Jabotinsky has been notorious for his belligerent, uncompromising attack on England. Now he talks like any other diplomat. "We have the same point of view as Britain, even if she doesn't know it. It is best for her to have a highly organized, cultural society, obligated to her because of having received its national opportunity from her, residing on the borders of the Suez Canal."

I reminded the Fuehrer that Palestine does not border the Suez Canal, but that the Canal is in an Arab national territory, Egypt. The Fuehrer made a gesture which was meant to sweep away boundary lines. Having disposed of the south I asked him next how would the expansion of a Jewish State in the north not come into conflict with England's oil pipeline.

"Ah, Haifa," the Fuehrer began, "will be the largest port on the Mediterranean. There will be a new breakwater from Haifa to Acre -- it will make a harbor as large as the Solent." In his enthusiasm he pictured a new Jewish harbor destined to make shadows of Alexandria, Gibraltar, Marseilles, Genoa, Trieste, Venice, Naples and even Constantinople.

Jabotinsky considers his Jewish State the sole protector of Britain's highway to her imperial interests in the Indian and Pacific Oceans. England has no land on the Mediterranean, he speculates, except Gibraltar, which will recede to the Spanish; and the island of Cyprus, which he claims England offered to give back to the Greeks after the war but they won't take it. In his new role of diplomat Jabotinsky forgets that there was a revolt in Cyprus to return to Greece, which the British suppressed; and he also forgets the existence of the naval station at Malta, and that the British have soldiers and airplanes already stationed along the oil line, and in Egypt are quartered 11,000 Tommies, almost as many as the whole Egyptian army. Under the pretense of being England's Mediterranean watchdog Jabotinsky dreams of a Jewish Empire expanding into Egypt to take over the Suez Canal and expanding into Iraq in order to protect the highly valuable oil line.

Jabotinsky's underhand ideology for achieving his goal is no recent tactic. His hatred of the Bolsheviki drove him in 1921 to sign a pact of military co-operation with the White Guard, Ukrainian Nationalist and notorious pogrom-maker, Petlura. Jabotinsky told me that he "would be as proud today as I was then to sign such an agreement."

The Fuehrer of the Jewish Brown Shirt Legions explained his signature as follows:

Petlura had in 1921 15,000 soldiers in a Polish camp waiting for French support in order to attack Soviet Ukraine. Slavinsky, Petlura's foreign minister, called on Jabotinsky who was in Prague at that time. "No more proclamations," Jabotinsky told him. "I or no one else will believe them. There must be some action, not words." To protect the Ukrainian Jews Jabotinsky proposed to organize and arm a Jewish gendarmerie to follow in the rear of Petlura's army and after a Jewish town has been captured protect its population from pogroms.

I pointed out that it had been Petlura himself who had conducted the bloody pogroms on all of his expeditions into the Ukraine. "No," the Fuehrer disagreed, "I don't believe Petlura himself was anti-semitic. He came from a healthy, peasant stock. It was his soldiers who got out of control."

Jabotinsky was and is today proud of having signed a co-operative pact with a general who he admitted had no control over his own pogrom-rioters, while on the other hand the Jewish villages, that he purported to be the protector of, were at that time under the Bolsheviki who had already guaranteed and protected Jewish lives and property. At that time the Bolsheviki had been victorious on all the invaded fronts and had even signed a peace treaty with England. Stability was recognized when France in the same year withdrew her support of Petlura. Why then didn't Jabotinsky in his desire to safeguard the Jews support the Bolshevik Government at a time when it stood in the least possibility of being overthrown? Instead he signed a co-operative pact with a non-existing government, the Ukrainian Nationalists, the leader of which was in Poland, not in the Ukraine. Jabotinsky obviously was more interested in overthrowing the Bolsheviki than in protecting Jews. In fact his plan meant the sacrifice of Jews. Can anyone imagine a Jewish gendarmerie following in the rear and not being drawn into battle, or not being forced to do so by Petlura's uncontrolled bandits? Or can anyone imagine Petlura's pogrom-seasoned brigands being refused their prey by a handful of inexperienced Jewish youths, who had been placidly observing them while they drove off the defenders of the village?

Jabotinsky, because he said he would sign a similar pact today and be proud of it, is more interested in overthrowing the Soviet Government than in protecting Jews. In answer to my question he said he was not interested in whether anti-semitism has been abolished in the Soviet Union. Nor was he interested in the Jewish colonies in Russia. He counts out -- for the present -- the two million Russian Jews [I corrected him in that they are really three million but he insisted on the two] because he doubts if the government is economically sound.

The Fuehrer of the Brown Shirted Legions of Judaism is in America because "Revisionism is the genuinest proletarian movement in the world in that it is the poorest." In America about one percent of the Jews are Zionists. What fraction of another one percent will donate money to the Jewish Hitler?


Now, I read the Israeli news every day, oh boy, and most of it tears me apart. Since my most recent visit last October, I read it obsessively. I subscribe to newsletters that bring, almost every day, bad tidings. The government propaganda insults me. I am supposed to think that Israel is a worthy nation because it is superior to apartheid South Africa and that, because it has murderous enemies, it is deserving. As I sit down to write this melancholy reflection, I come upon this Reuters report based on WikiLeaks diplomatic cables just published in a Norwegian newspaper. Reuters cites an American diplomatic cable from November 3, 2008: “As part of their overall embargo plan against Gaza, Israeli officials have confirmed to [U.S. embassy economic officers] on multiple occasions that they intend to keep the Gazan economy on the brink of collapse without quite pushing it over the edge.” Israel wanted Gaza’s economy “functioning at the lowest level possible consistent with avoiding a humanitarian crisis,” Prime Minister Ehud Olmert said, in January of that year, even as he delivered an empty promise not to keep out food for children, medicine, and fuel for essential institutions. And then he said this: “But there is no justification for demanding we allow residents of Gaza to live normal lives while shells and rockets are fired from their streets and courtyards” into southern Israel.

There is no justification for demanding we allow…normal lives… This is the reasoning of terrorists. I cannot read the words without reflecting on the normal-looking Jerusalem streets I saw in October, filled with normal-looking women pushing normal-looking children in strollers, and normal-looking teenagers waiting for normal-looking buses at normal bus stops—while a few minutes away was occupied East Jerusalem, with all the dispossessions and incursions done by Israeli forces at the expense of residents who are very much not permitted to live normal lives. But, says the leadership of the Jewish state, not everybody is entitled to live normal lives.

I take it personally, being a Jew start to finish, which has meant different things for me at different points in my life, but always one or another kind of complicity. During the Six-Day War, in 1967, a new friend, the writer Richard M. Elman, wrote me that he was heading for Israel to volunteer as a soldier. I was mystified and wrote back to say so. What I said to him was that my passion, as an American radical, was to oppose the awful war for which my country was responsible. We were going to build Jerusalem in America’s not-so-green and not-altogether-pleasant land. It didn’t work out that way…certainly not in every respect. But I never doubted, during my youth in the New Left, that it was as a whole human being that I had signed up, very much including my Jewish soul.

Dick Elman felt something I didn’t feel at twenty-four: that an American Jew was obliged to the state of Israel. Love it, loathe it, feel proud of it or disgraced by it, join settlements or peacenik organizations, an American Jew qua Jew carries the weight of it. I came to that sense in my own way and time. In 1973, news that Egyptian forces had crossed the Suez Canal sent me in tears to a San Francisco shul I had never set foot in before, knowing acutely, desperately, that if the state of Israel was going to be destroyed, I wanted to receive the news among Jews. In 1975, driving in San Francisco, when I heard on the radio about the UN General Assembly passing the infamous “Zionism = racism” resolution, written in Orwellian duckspeak, I swore out loud my revulsion that in a world of nations, all of which are founded on mythic ideas with various downsides, one in particular should have been singled out for condemnation. I puffed myself up to declare that Israel wasn’t going to be destroyed: Over my dead body.

Well, the same applies today and for the foreseeable future. Friends don’t let friends destroy themselves if there’s the slightest thing they can do about it.

What should the relationship of American Jews be to the actually existing state of Israel? Doubly serious, doubly sober, doubly burdened, doubly insulted, doubly obliged. We are entangled in two states of emergency. The state of Israel is not the imagined promised land where the Jews are led by Paul Newman or where secure, rugged boys and girls plant trees purchased in the names of boys and girls like me, safely ensconced in the Bronx. It is America’s crazed doppelgänger, careering stupidly into a future that risks both countries and scourges both peoples. We shore it up, subsidize it, apologize for it, care wisely and unwisely about its fate, suffer for it and with it. No one can think that the self-destruction that the state of Israel courts in its myopia, clumsiness, and paranoia—and yes, paranoids have real enemies—takes place outside us.

I was struck by a talk Dissent’s founding editor Irving Howe gave in 1989, arguing that American Jews, their Judaism unserious, were going to wake up one day to discover that their sense of being Jewish was so wrapped up with a connection to Israel that as Israel became less supportable, so would their sense of being Jewish. I fear that the passage of two decades proves him more right than wrong.

It is as an American and a Jew, and an American Jew, that I rage, rage against the dying of the light.

Todd Gitlin has recently published The Chosen Peoples: America, Israel, and the Ordeals of Divine Election (with Liel Leibovitz) and the novel Undying. He teaches at Columbia University.
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Re: AN unREASONABLE MAN, directed by Henriette Mantel

Postby admin » Mon Jul 27, 2015 3:45 am

by The Nation




Todd Gitlin, a professor of journalism and sociology, is chair of the PhD program in communications at Columbia. His new book, Occupy Nation: The Roots, the Spirit, and the Promise of Occupy Wall Street, is forthcoming in April from HarperCollins.


Why Future Generations Will Ask Where You Were on September 21, 2014
The People's Climate March proves the climate movement has reached critical mass, like the civil rights movement, antiwar, feminist and gay movements before it.



Students Are Leading the Fight Against Climate Change With a Simple Strategy: Divest Now!
It could just be the first step toward reversing this slow-motion apocalypse.



The Wonderful American World of Informers and Agents Provocateurs
Close encounters of the lower-tech kind.


MEDIA APRIL 25, 2013

Is the Press Too Big to Fail?

From climate change to financial meltdown, the worst of our journalism is becoming the norm.



The Unbearable Elasticity of Gun Logic

For the gun lobby, Newtown was evidence that more guns are necessary.

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Re: AN unREASONABLE MAN, directed by Henriette Mantel

Postby admin » Mon Jul 27, 2015 8:33 am


by The Nation



Morton Mintz covered the Supreme Court for The Washington Post from 1964 to 1965 and again from 1977 to 1980. He is a former chair of the Fund for
Investigative Journalism.

JUNE 19, 2007

Will McCain-Feingold Survive Another Court Test?

By a vote of 5 to 4, in December 2003, the Supreme Court upheld a major provision of the McCain-Feingold campaign finance act that prohibits corporations (and labor unions) from paying for ads that mention the name of a federal candidate, and that are broadcast 60 days before an election or 30 days before a primary.

That narrow ruling is now under challenge and could be overturned in the next few weeks, thanks to President Bush's appointments of John G. Roberts Jr. as Chief Justice and Samuel A. Alito Jr. as an Associate Justice.

The case involves Wisconsin Right to Life, Inc., which campaigned to prevent the re-election of Senator Russell Feingold (D-Wis.), by taking large sums of money from corporations to buy phony "issue" ads on radio and television. The ads attacked Feingold and Herb Kohl, the other Wisconsin Democrat in the Senate, for blocking Bush judicial nominees. Under the 2003 decision, such bogus ads were the "functional equivalent" of campaign ads and thus banned by the McCain-Feingold provision.



Will Congress Reform Wretched Executive Excess?

Outrage over excessive rewards for incompetent executives could spark the Democratic Congress to action.



Road to Perdition

A nearly forgotten criminal conspiracy by GM, Firestone and Chevron shut down the nation's municipal railways, replacing them with gas-guzzling bus lines, paving the way for global warming and for our energy crisis.



Serious Questions for Samuel A. Alito Jr.

Questions for Supreme Court nominee Samuel A. Alito Jr.: What are the rights of an individual before the law? Are these rights any different from what Alito views as the rights of a corporation?


LAW OCTOBER 11, 2005

Ten Questions for Harriet Miers

Corporate power and money control our lives and our politics as never before. As the Senate Judiciary Committee prepares for Harriet Miers's nomination hearings, here are ten legal questions worth pondering about corporations, individuals and the law.

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Re: AN unREASONABLE MAN, directed by Henriette Mantel

Postby admin » Mon Jul 27, 2015 8:51 am

A critique of the press by a veteran reporter
By Morton Mintz
September 18, 2005



In a talk [by Mintz on Sept. 13, 2005, to the Southeastern Sussex County Democratic Club at Bethany Beach, Del.] Morton Mintz describes what he calls six 'deep-seated, fundamental, and persisting press failings that have enormous impact on our people and our country.'

I came to speak as a journalist, not as a partisan, and that is what I will do.

Let me begin by describing two categories of critics of the mainstream press, as symbolized by, principally, the New York Times and the Washington Post.

One category consists of an army of dirty, rotten scoundrels and crazies. Most are agents of right-wing and Republican causes. For them, most of the time, freedom of the press is a license to agitprop; for their employers, it is a tool to maximize profits.

The scoundrels befoul the word "conservative." They exult without end in equating the word "liberal" with disloyalty, and sometimes treason; and in imputing "liberal bias" to mainstream news organizations—falsely—they sometimes, I suspect, intimidate them.

Their ultimate but unadmitted goal is, I fear, the destruction of nonpartisan journalism that speaks truth to power.

As you've doubtless noted, I've named none of the scoundrels. Might Rush Limbaugh be one? Of course not! If you thought I had him in mind, you must have missed the full-page ad published in Time Magazine last week by an entity calling itself the "Excellence in Broadcasting Network." A photo of "America's Anchorman" dominates it. Stripped across the bottom is a large-type caption that, in capital letters, proclaims: "THE NATION TRUSTS RUSH". I'm a citizen of the nation, right?

I would waste the time of a sophisticated audience were I to dwell on the frauds, liars and lunatics whose idea of a code of ethics is the three-digit number on the back of their credit cards. Instead, my focus will be on the second category. It consists of critics—myself emphatically included—who believe, as Bill Moyers put it last month, "that the quality of journalism and the quality of democracy are inseparable." That's why we applaud and cheer the many quality acts of superb, courageous journalism and investigative reporting done by the mainstream press at home and in dangerous places abroad.

Three very brief examples: In the New Orleans Times-Picayune, the powerful series warning that it was not whether, but when an utterly ruinous hurricane would strike. In the Times, David Barstow's and Lowell Bergman's terrific investigative reporting on the brutal safety and environmental crimes of McWane Inc., the Alabama-based pipe manufacturer. In the Washington Post, Anthony Shadid's brave, brilliant and insightful reporting from Iraq.

The need to improve mainstream journalism

But, in an effort that seems Sisyphean at times, we also criticize this same press, compulsively, constantly, and vigorously. Our goal is the polar opposite of the goal of the scoundrels. It is to improve mainstream journalism. The better mainstream journalism is, the better served is democracy, and the better its ability to withstand and discredit unscrupulous assaults.

It is in this context that I will identify a half-dozen of what I see as deep-seated, fundamental, and persisting press failings that have enormous impact on our people and our country, but that are mostly under the public's radar. Indeed, these failings are seldom discussed by journalists.

FAILING ONE: Right-wing commentators have become extraordinarily powerful influences on our politics, our governance, our society, and our future. They were indispensable to George W. Bush as a candidate and are bulwarks of his presidency and his party. In significant degree, I believe, they have become so influential precisely because in the name of informing the public, they routinely deceive, distort, mislead, and outright lie. Their pollution of civil discourse has been documented by David Brock in his book The Republican Noise Machine, and by Fairness and Accuracy in Reporting, among others. Indeed, the invaluable documents and archives their wretched conduct every weekday.

It is because the scoundrels exert vast power that mainstream news organizations are duty-bound to monitor what they say and do. To be sure, the scoundrels do get occasional hits: Think Frank Rich in the Times. In my view, however, commentary, no matter how much supplemented by MediaMatters, bloggers, and others, is neither a sufficient response nor a good excuse for the enduring failure of the Times, Post, and others to do in-depth, fair-minded, and sustained journalism about this gang. I'm talking about reporting, not invective. I have in mind, for example, careful journalism comparing actual facts with what are alleged to be facts in the torrential outpourings of Rush Limbaugh, Bill O'Reilly, Sean Hannity, Michael Savage, and Ann Coulter, among many others.

FAILURE TWO: News organizations that have and enforce high ethical standards for their news staffs have low or non-existent and unenforced ethical standards for their commentators. They do unto reporters what they do not do unto pundits. This rarely discussed double-standard is deeply embedded at the Wall Street Journal.

Over a period of years, a former Journal op-ed legal-affairs pundit, L. Gordon Crovitz, falsely quoted court opinions and wrapped quotes around statements that, he would have had his readers believe, came from the opinions, but in fact did not. Stuart Taylor documented a long list of such ethical atrocities in The American Lawyer in 1989. Dow Jones didn't fire Crovitz; it gave him an important assignment in Asia.

A Journal editorial-page editor, John Fund, "has doubled as a member of the Speaker's Advisory Group, a small cluster of [Newt] Gingrich's close advisers. Fund nearly left the Journal a few months ago to become Gingrich's chief spokesman." Jacob Weisberg wrote those sentences in Slate in 1996. In The Hunting of the President, Joe Conason and Gene Lyons document that Fund and fellow Journal editorial writer Micah Morrison were in Arkansas as active co-conspirators in Richard Mellon Scaife's Arkansas project to destroy Bill Clinton. Fund and Morrison continue to editorialize. It is all but unimaginable to me that the Journal would not immediately have fired a reporter who had engaged in any such unethical conduct.

George F. Will is a pundit for several hundred newspapers, including the Post; a Newsweek contributor, and an ABC commentator. In March 2003, in a piece in which he tore into critics of President Bush's plans to go to war against Iraq, Will featured quotes from Conrad Black, who controlled a media empire, the now-insolvent Hollinger International.

"Into this welter of foolishness has waded Conrad Black," Will wrote. What he did not give a scintilla of a hint of was that he was a member of the Board of Advisers of Hollinger, which for one day of conversation a year was paying him $25,000 annually. This jaw-dropping conflict of interest, by the way, was but the latest in a series of what could be called Willful transgressions.

A different standard for George Will

A Times reporter asked Will whether he should have revealed his Hollinger connections to his readers. "Mr. Will said he saw no reason to do so," the reporter wrote. His story went on to quote Will as saying: "My business is my business. Got it?"

Ethical journalism may not be Will's business, but it certainly ought to be the business of those who publish and air him. But rather than criticizing his offenses, they let him go on punditing as if he's done nothing wrong, just as they do Robert Novak and others.

Having been a reporter at the Washington Post for nearly 30 years, I will tell you with total confidence that a reporter found to have taken any dollars at all, or gift, from some corporation, union, whatever, and to have doubly compounded his error by concealing the payment from his editors and writing about the source of the money, would have been fired on the instant for gross breach of trust. And rightly.

FAILING THREE: Imagine that you are an oil company bent on undermining warnings of global warming from the scientific community. Or a tobacco company wanting to persuade the public that the safety of smoking is a matter of genuine scientific controversy. Or a pharmaceutical company wanting to sell the notion that the industry is over-regulated or that the drugs it makes in the United States become unsafe when imported from Canada.

Because you are clearly a party at interest, your argument in each case will be met with a certain skepticism. How to get around this? Simple: Fund think-tanks to deploy personable salesmen who, under an illusory protective halo of scholarly independence, will push your claims 24-7. Most importantly, the think-tank penumbra provides news organizations with a rationale for prominently printing and airing the very claims that they would shun or downplay had they not been not laundered through think tanks.

This is an ugly scam. Why has the falsely-labeled liberal press participated in it? Because, I dare suggest, it's been eager to demonstrate that it is what Fox News pretends to be but certainly is not, which is fair and balanced. The reality is that this brand of fair and balanced is unfair and unbalanced. Defensively, possibly even cravenly, I suspect, the press has been anxious to turn back the onslaught of "liberal bias" and anti-business smears by the scoundrels and their Republican and right-wing accomplices. This crowd is guilty as hell of "conservative bias," or, more accurately, right-wing bias.

My case in point is the Competitive Enterprise Institute. Merely between 2000 and 2003, Chris Mooney reported in Mother Jones magazine, ExxonMobil gave the CEI $1,380,000 (and several million dollars more to some 40 other opinion-influencing groups). Thanks to additional shrewd investments in CEI made by cigarette makers, drug companies and the rest, its annual budget had reached $3 million by 2002.

It's Journalism 101 to follow the money. In the case of think tanks, with few exceptions, the Post, Times and other mainstream news organizations have failed for years to do it. In the case of the CEI, they've repeatedly cringed from describing it as the industry-funded think tank it plainly is. Instead, they've applied such sanitizing labels as "libertarian," "business libertarian," "conservative," and "free-market."

Perhaps the most mealy-mouthed description of all appeared last November in a Washington Post story on new government drug-safety initiatives. The CEI, the article said, is "a nonprofit public policy organization dedicated to the principle of limited government." This is a classic entry in the annals of fact as the enemy of truth.

The news organizations that have been long-time active participants in the think-tank scam have not only effectively misinformed the public about very important matters, but have done so knowingly and willfully. Their complicity is spelled out in an article I did for the Summer issue of Nieman Reports.

A footnote, if I may. I think the money should be followed, period. That's why, in the early 1990s, I wrote extensively about the American Civil Liberties Union taking huge amounts of cash from the tobacco industry, while supporting legislation wanted by the industry and not telling its members of either activity.

Back to global warming. Independent scientists warn that it is a dire and growing threat to the planet. News organizations have routinely quoted Myron Ebell of the, you know, principled, libertarian CEI, trying to discredit them. What qualifies him as an authority on global warming? A master's degree is the pinnacle of Ebell's academic career. His master's degree economics. His master's voice is, well, I'll leave that to you.

Good journalism tries to level with the reader as best it can, always allowing for the possibility of being wrong. The journalism I've just summarized is a continuum of knowing omission and deception.

A word to the press: Get relevant

FAILURE FOUR: Consistently, stories that really matter to people's lives, safety, health and pocketbooks, even to the survival of our country, are ignored, neglected, trivialized, or if covered, covered very late, even when they can be as easily plucked as ripe fruit from a tree. Let me mention just one of dozens I could cite. It is the decline, and in some sectors blatant rejection, of congressional oversight of government fraud, waste, abuse, and mismanagement. My example is the Food and Drug Administration.

"From the mid-1960s through much of the 1980s"—I’m quoting a 2002 article in The American Prospect—“Congress played an integral role in drug safety. Lawmakers"—principally Reps. L.H. Fountain and Ted Weiss, but also including Gaylord Nelson and Ted Kennedy in the Senate—“meticulously probed the regulatory histories of dubious drugs, uncovered FDA weaknesses and ordered corrections."

Congressional oversight of the FDA began to decline in the late 1980s, while the Democrats still controlled the House. It spiraled sharply downward in 1992-still on the Democrats' watch-with passage of a highly dubious law allowing the industry to pay so-called user fees as a way to speed FDA approval of new drugs.

Oversight collapsed utterly in January 1995, when the Republicans took control of the House and drug and tobacco industry lobbyists and campaign contributors took control of them. Speaker Newt Gingrich called the FDA the "leading job killer in America." He denounced its then-Commissioner, David Kessler, who wanted to regulate tobacco, as "a thug" and "a bully."

The consequences were catastrophic.

In the decade ending in the Fall of 2002, 13 dangerous drugs were pulled from the market after causing many hundreds of deaths and many thousands of injuries. Just seven of the unsafe medicines had caused more than one thousand deaths. Why had the FDA rushed them onto the market? Why had the withdrawals been slow?

In a superb investigative series that won a Pulitzer Prize in 2002, David Willman of the Los Angeles Times found that the FDA had become a partner rather than a supposed watchdog of the pharmaceutical industry. This is an industry that has more lobbyists than Congress has members, that fills the campaign coffers of friendly lawmakers to overflowing, and that dangles the prospect of high-paying jobs before Capitol Hill overseers who don't oversee.

House leaders and committee chairs had no interest in investigating the FDA's role in approving even one of the drugs that caused needless deaths and injuries on their watch. Least of all did they and the other lawmakers who were themselves partners of the industry want to investigate why and how the FDA had become a partner of the industry.

As chairman of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, Billy Tauzin had prime FDA oversight jurisdiction but didn't exercise it. Over the course of 15 years, he took $218,000 from the drug industry. In January 2005, the Louisiana Republican became president of the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America. His annual pay package is reportedly worth at least $2 million. Tauzin's successor, Joe Barton of Texas, is cut from the same cloth.

Early last year in the Senate, in startling contrast, Charles Grassley broke from the Republican pack. The chairman of the Finance Committee undertook tough oversight of the FDA, notably including its handling of childhood antidepressants and Vioxx and related painkillers. Moreover, Grassley served notice that he'd protect the FDA's internal whistleblowers, such as medical officer David Graham, who had called Vioxx a "profound regulatory failure" by an agency "incapable of protecting America against another Vioxx."

It's all very well to criticize the FDA and the likes of Gingrich, Tauzin, and Barton. But does the press deserve a pass? No way. For a full decade, it has failed to inform the public of the prolonged, corrupt pre-Grassley abdication of congressional oversight of the agency responsible for the safety of their medicines and of the causes, consequences and implications of that abandonment.

I have yet to see a story in which Billy Tauzin, or Joe Barton, or House Speakers, or House and Senate majority leaders, were asked why, say, there'd not been an oversight investigation into any of the seven drugs that caused the deaths of a thousand Americans. Or a story on why these deaths seemed to matter not at all to them while the death of Terry Schiavo became their be-all and end-all. Or a story in which Senator Mike Enzi was asked why his Health committee hadn't done the FDA oversight done by Charles Grassley's Finance Committee.

The failure here was one of turning a blind eye when the blood of thousands of thy neighbors was being spilled. Unfortunately, much the same story could be told about other agencies and issues.

FAILURE FIVE: In the aftermath of Katrina, the mainstream press, network TV, in particular, is being justly praised for asking tough questions—for speaking truth to power. This is a sea-change, make no mistake about it. Down through the years, thousands of substantive questions should have been but were not asked of the powerful, starting with presidents, government executives, lawmakers, candidates for the White House and Congress, corporate leaders, religious leaders, and on and on.

The United States and Russia together have approximately 4,800 nuclear warheads on hair-trigger alert. These weapons have a combined destructive power nearly 100,000 times that of the atomic bomb which leveled Hiroshima. Within a few minutes, a wrong call about a supposed incoming missile, or, say, a terrorist electronically hacking into a launch-control system, could start a war that would destroy humankind.

A few questions for the President

So here's a question for President Bush: In May 2000, as a presidential candidate you said this: "[F]or two nations at peace, keeping so many weapons on high alert may create unacceptable risks of accidental or unauthorized launch. So, as President, I will ask for an assessment of what we can safely do to lower the alert status of our forces." Mr. President, what have you done to lower the risks that you cited five years ago?

Here's another: Many of your appointees to Cabinet-level and other high regulatory posts had been lobbyists dedicated to weakening or killing the very regulations that on taking office they solemnly swear to enforce. What philosophy underlies such appointments? Have you been appointing foxes to guard the chicken coops?

And one more: Economic inequality in the United States today has for a long time been greater than in any other industrialized country. Yet the gaps in income and wealth have been steadily widening. At 367 leading corporations today, the pay of the top boss averages 431 times that of the production worker. Are the economic inequality and the chasm in income healthy for our democracy?

FAILURE SIX: Mainstream press organizations decided long ago, possibly unwittingly, that in campaign coverage, the issues owed serious, sustained attention are predominantly the issues that the candidates select, usually in their own self-interest. This policy may have served the public interest in, say, the presidential election of 1936. But for decades now, it's served to disconnect a great many issues of highest importance from election campaigns.

The issues I've just mentioned--nearly 5,000 nuclear warheads on hair-trigger alert, lobbyists become regulators, the economic inequality--are but three of a host of examples. George Bush and John Kerry didn't mention them in the 2004 campaign; consequently, they were—for political editors, reporters, and debate moderators—non-issues.

Here are a few more examples of questions of the kind that need to be but don't get asked, not only of presidential candidates, but also of vice-presidential and House and Senate candidates:

§ Why does the United States need nuclear weapons in numbers sufficient to destroy every major city on the planet ten times over?
§ Does every American have a right to basic health care?
§ Why aren't business executives who knowingly and willfully market products that they know will needlessly kill, injure, or sicken people, or who knowingly expose their workers to preventable death, in jury, or disease, criminally prosecuted?

A few illustrations from the past underscore the persistence of the disconnect between issues that really matter and the issues emphasized in campaigns:

In May 1988, while the presidential campaign was revving up, newspapers and television newscasters gave top billing to an alarming report by the Surgeon General of the United States. Cigarettes, warned Dr. C. Everett Koop, an appointee of President Reagan, "are addicting in the same sense as are drugs such as heroin
and cocaine."

Despite countless opportunities between the prominent news coverage and the November election, or indeed in the ensuing 17 years, to my knowledge, and despite the more than 400,000 premature deaths smoking causes every year, political reporters have not asked a presidential or congressional candidate questions such as: Do you accept Dr. Koop's evidence of the addictiveness of cigarettes? If you don't, what scientific evidence supports your position? You don't take money from the cocaine cartel, of course. But how is it moral, or right, to take money from the maker of an addictive but legal product that kills hundreds of thousands of Americans annually?

In 1996, no one asked presidential candidate Bob Dole whether he stood by a statement he'd made in 1983: "When these political action committees give money, they expect something in return other than good government."

In 2000, after a decade of unparalleled prosperity, it was somehow not a campaign issue that 13.5 million children--one out of every five--were hungry; and that three out of four of the hungry children had parents who work. Nor was welfare of $125 billion a year to politically-wired corporations and industries. Nor was the massive transfer of cash, securities and other assets to foreign tax havens. The resultant evasion of U.S. income taxes was in an amount equivalent to, by one unofficial estimate, the sum of "every tax dollar paid by everyone in New York State and New Jersey who earns less than $200,000 a year."

I'll have no income to report to the IRS as a result of being here today, just the pleasure of being with you. Now I'll be happy to take questions.

The above is the text of a talk by Mintz on Sept. 13, 2005, to the Southeastern Sussex County Democratic Club at Bethany Beach, Del.

Morton Mintz (Nieman '64) is a senior adviser to the Nieman Watchdog project.

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Re: AN unREASONABLE MAN, directed by Henriette Mantel

Postby admin » Mon Jul 27, 2015 9:16 am

Black, white and pink all over
More than a year after the New York Times printed its first same-sex wedding announcement, gay couples debate the need to declare their love in the most public way possible.
DEC 12, 2003



Since deciding to run same-sex wedding announcements a year and a half ago, the New York Times has actively recruited gay couples to be part of its pages — though it won’t specify how. “We have expressed our interest in hearing from more couples through our many contacts within a wide range of community, religious and social groups,” said Robert Woletz, the editor of the Times’ Society News section, who would agree to be interviewed only via e-mail. Woletz declined to provide figures on how many same-sex couples are accepted or rejected in an average week.

In the past 14 months, there have been a few weeks when no gay couples were featured — which initially prompted some outcry from members of the gay community. But as gay wedding announcements have become a regularly occurring part of the paper — at least 50 gay and lesbian couples have appeared in the pages so far — those criticisms have faded.

Even more impressive, perhaps, than the number of couples who have been featured, is the national impact of the Times’ decision. According to the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD), which lobbied the Times for a year to include gays in the section, at least 148 papers nationwide have followed suit. Only three states, Oklahoma, South Dakota and Mississippi, still lack a major newspaper that publishes same-sex wedding or commitment ceremony announcements. Even Bride’s magazine — a 70-year-old publication with a circulation of more than 400,000 — ran a feature story on same-sex wedding ceremonies for the first time in its September-October 2003 issue.

Considering that the Massachusetts Supreme Court recently declared the state’s ban on same-sex marriages illegal — while states such as Hawaii, California and Vermont already legalize same-sex unions and Canada officially allows gay and lesbian couples to wed — it seems certain that the number of gay couples appearing on the nation’s wedding pages will only increase.

Predictably, there has been some backlash from conservatives — the Times printed a letter condemning the policy change soon after the first announcement, groups like the Family Research Council published Op-Eds decrying the move, and a representative from the Traditional Values Coalition even appeared on MSNBC’s “Hardball” to condemn the paper. But what’s more surprising is the debate that same-sex announcements have sparked within the gay community itself. While gay couples may be becoming more visible, opinions within the gay community about the significance of being included on society pages remain divided. For many couples, submitting applications announcing their unions is about making a statement, and fighting for a level of normalcy and legitimacy. But others don’t want to be part of a mainstream, some would say elitist, tradition. Still others are fearful of the repercussions of going public.

“There is homophobia in this world, and there’s a safety concern,” acknowledges Glennda Testone, a media director at GLAAD. “These first couples are trailblazers, and coming out on that scale isn’t a step I would force people to make. Eventually, though, we want to make the wedding page an automatic for gay couples, so in preparing for their ceremony, they’ll say, ‘OK, I gotta get the cake, I gotta reserve a wedding hall, I gotta send in the announcement.’”

But some gay activists — and members of committed gay partnerships — say they have better things to do than ape the trappings of heterosexual conventions. Kathy LeMay is 33 years old, a graduate of the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, and the president of her own social affairs consulting firm in Northampton, Mass. In October, she participated in a commitment ceremony with her partner, Michelle Billings. In other words, LeMay would be a great candidate for the New York Times wedding page.

But she didn’t want any part of it.

“When it comes to where do I choose to put my time to make a real change in society, this isn’t it,” LeMay says. “I don’t feel like I need to put a picture of me and my girlfriend in the Styles section.” LeMay feels that more can be done to advance the status of gays within society by challenging norms, not by being a part of them.

“I think infiltration is one way to do activism, but at a certain level you start to react to what other people have done, rather than setting your own agenda. What if we were to spend time seeing, not how we can be a part of this institution that’s been handed to us, but how can we make things better?”

Sarah Wright, a 36-year-old social work consultant and doctoral student at the State University of New York at Albany, says her decision to stay out of the Times wedding page was more personal than political. Wright has been with her partner, Heather, for more than 11 years. Last year they celebrated their 10-year anniversary by throwing a party with about 40 guests, though they kept the event informal, without a vow ceremony. While she frequently reads the New York Times wedding page — and specifically looks for the latest gay couples who have tied the knot — Wright believes that her private life should remain private.

“I’m happy for other gay couples who decide to be in the wedding section, but for me personally, I’d never aspire to be on the page,” Wright says. “Because it’s so national, it just feels kind of showy, town-criery.”

While activists like GLAAD’s Testone say they respect some couples’ desire for privacy, she thinks there’s a bigger picture to consider. The more gay couples appear in mainstream publications like the New York Times, the more visible homosexuals — and in turn, the rights that they are fighting for — become.

“We won’t know who we are as a community until we allow LGBT couples to tell us who they are,” says Testone. “[Having gay couples featured on the wedding pages] forces politicians at a high level to treat the issues in a human way. Those couples you see in the Times don’t have access to their partners’ Social Security, they don’t have spousal visitation rights, they can’t adopt their partner’s child.”

Some argue that the stories of gay couples meeting, falling in love and forming healthy relationships that appear in the Times each week are, in and of themselves, subversive. In Steven Goldstein and Daniel Gross’ announcement — the first one in the New York Times’ history, which appeared on Sept. 1, 2002 — for example, Gross revealed what it was like to tell his parents that he had fallen in love with another man. “My mom said, ‘You seem like everything’s great,’” [Daniel] recalled. “‘You seem like you’re in love.’ I said, ‘I am.’ They said, ‘That’s great.’ I said, ‘His name is Steven.’ My mother said, ‘Oy,’ and was silent for a while.”

“That was awesome that they put that story in there,” Goldstein says. “It wasn’t just that Buffy Worthington III told her mother she was marrying John Pennington IV, and her mother said, ‘That’s wonderful, darling.’”

Before gay couples started appearing in the Times’ wedding pages, Joe Tom Easley, a legal affairs lecturer who lives in Florida and New York, was never interested in them — even though his longtime boyfriend, Peter Freiberg, loved to read them. Then in August, the two got married in Canada after spending 21 years together. Suddenly, the whole announcement idea didn’t seem quite so silly anymore.

“I always thought of it as the page for indefatigable publicity seekers,” Easley says. “Now I’ve become one of them.”

Their announcement, which appeared on Aug. 24, 2003, provided more than just a moment of fame and self-congratulation. Easley and Freiberg believe their appearance had an impact on people’s attitudes toward gay marriage and homosexuality in general.

“It’s important to let people know that there are gay couples out there in love,” Freiberg says. “Just like straight couples.”

Evan Wolfson is a longtime activist and executive director of Freedom to Marry, a New York group devoted to advancing the cause of gay marriage. Wolfson, long a reader of the wedding page, says that by making a political statement with their presence on the page, gay couples are ensuring that eventually their stories will be looked at as simply human, and not just representative of an embattled minority.

“A straight American will see a picture of a gay couple, and he or she will be forced to ask the question, ‘How am I going to treat this couple? Am I going to discriminate against them, or treat them like everyone else?’” Wolfson says. “Most people’s instinct will be to do the right thing.”

Of course, there will probably always be a certain segment of society that refuses to see gay marriage — and certainly gay couples on the wedding page — as simply normal. Guardians of “traditional” marriage feel that the inclusion of same-sex partners in the wedding section undermines the sanctity of marriage as an institution.

“On the same page, we may have pictures of two guys over here, and a guy and a girl over there. And we can be glad that they all found happiness, but this couple over here just is not the same as that couple over there,” says Glenn Stanton, author of “Why Marriage Matters,” and senior analyst for marriage and sexuality at Focus on the Family. “The implication, however, is that the two pictures are morally equal, which means that either the male or the female member of the heterosexual couple just didn’t matter — they matter as people, but the deepest part of their humanity, expressed in their maleness or femaleness, is diminished.

“By denouncing gender roles,” he continues. “These announcements diminish our humanity.”

So even as conservative opposition to same-sex marriage grows — led by talk of a constitutional amendment banning it — some segments of society are accepting a homosexual role in what has been a traditionally heterosexual institution as par for the course. The acceptance of gays in the wedding pages is just one part of this changing attitude.

Nick Gottlieb, 38, whose marriage to Macky Alston was one of the first gay announcements in the Times, definitely wanted to make a statement. His mother, Linda, who produced the hit movie “Dirty Dancing,” even made a few calls to friends at the paper to make sure her son got in. Not that Nick really needed any help — he graduated cum laude from Yale and earned a master’s in social work from Smith, while “Macky,” or Wallace McPherson Alston III, holds degrees from Columbia and the Union Theological Seminary. But Nick wanted to make a point; he wanted to make sure that their marriage would serve as an example of a gay couple that was just as successful, loving and committed as a straight couple.

The point was made. But something else happened, too. Beyond the politics of the situation, Nick found himself enjoying the moment. For Nick, who grew up in New York, the Times was his local paper. Seeing himself pictured next to his partner on its pages made him feel like a real part of the city he called home.

“With all of the time and attention the paper gave us, it was really nice to feel held up by your community,” Nick says. “We were made to feel very important, which is exactly what you want on your wedding day.”
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