CovertAction Bulletin
Don’t let FBI’s Trump raid fool you: they’re still enemies of the people

Don’t let FBI’s Trump raid fool you: they’re still enemies of the people

August 9, 2022

On Monday, the FBI raided Donald Trump’s Mar-A-Lago, Florida home, searching for documents that may have been classified and should not have left the White House. The right wing immediately jumped to condemning the raid, with far-right Congresswoman Marjorie Taylor Greene posting “Defund the FBI,” while liberals hailed the bureau as defenders of democracy and justice. 

We discuss how the right is being disingenuous and the left ahistorical in their assessments of the Bureau, and what the raid means especially in the context of an expected 2024 run by Trump, and how the continuing January 6 hearings could be impacted by both the raid and Alex Jones’ lawyers sending his texts to the wrong person.

We also talk about CNN’s blatant and intentional misrepresentation of Roger Waters’ comments about the conflict in Ukraine. The activist and musician provided a nuanced historical answer to a question about the US role in the war, but the network edited it to make Waters appear as if he’s defending war crimes.

Finally, we speak with two library workers about attacks on libraries, including Jamestown MI voting to defund its library, and drag queen story hours being physically attacked across the country. It is far from the first time libraries have been at the center of conflicts around access to information.

 

Pelosi’s Visit to Taiwan Could Be the Start of World War III

Pelosi’s Visit to Taiwan Could Be the Start of World War III

August 3, 2022

On Tuesday, Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi landed in Taiwan, marking a major escalation of U.S. aggression towards China. While this may not on it’s face seem alarming, the reality is that the U.S. is playing with fire. 1979 was the last time that a U.S. head of state or member of the ruling party visited Taiwan. Since the 70’s the official policy of the U.S. has been the One China policy, and this visit undermines this very policy. China’s statement by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs stated, “These moves, like playing with fire, are extremely dangerous. Those who play with fire will perish by it.”

In order to understand the unfolding situation, we are joined by Ken Hammon, Professor of East-Asian and Global History at New Mexico State and activist with Pivot to Peace.

Surveillance Nation: From Amazon to the NSA

Surveillance Nation: From Amazon to the NSA

July 27, 2022

Amazon wants to be your retailer, educator, grocery store, security system, bank and now your healthcare provider: A few days ago, reports came out that the tech giant is looking to buy One Medical for $4 billion, its latest foray into the healthcare business. At the same time, Amazon provides law enforcement with easy access to massive amounts of data and the tools to parse it.

Of course it’s not just Amazon: Facebook, Google, Microsoft, Twitter and every big tech company obey the basic law of capitalism: grow or perish. They all rely on one shared resource: our data. And they all cozy up to the US government when it comes to information sharing.

Meanwhile, agencies like the CIA and NSA, plus lesser-known ones like the National Reconnaissance Office, regularly spy on people across the globe with flimsy legal pretext. In the digital age, what was once led by the government is more and more relying on partnerships with private big data companies.

We’re joined by Rosa Astra, a tech worker, militant journalist and organizer to discuss the breadth and depth of the surveillance state and how to organize under it.

Why Were 400 Officers Not Enough to Stop the Uvalde Mass Shooter?

Why Were 400 Officers Not Enough to Stop the Uvalde Mass Shooter?

July 20, 2022

The chilling video released last week of the police response inside Robb Elementary in Uvalde, TX on May 24 exposes the police. Dressed in tactical gear, officers waited over an hour to confront the gunman who killed 21 people in a senseless act of violence.

Rather than being a local problem, this is a national issue: Over and over again, videos - many of them shot by bystanders - show police killing unarmed Black people. At the same time the police are hailed as heroes required to keep the peace and bring criminals to justice. The Uvalde response and video are the latest example of how this couldn’t be further from the truth.

We are joined by Natalia Marques, writer at Peoples Dispatch, to discuss the Uvalde response and the real role of the police: to defend property, not protect people.

Judicial Coup? The Supreme Court Case that Could End the Facade of U.S. Democracy

Judicial Coup? The Supreme Court Case that Could End the Facade of U.S. Democracy

July 13, 2022

On today’s show we discuss the deep implications that the Supreme Court's decision to take up Harper v Moore could have on the fundamental institution of U.S. democracy. The Supreme Court’s ruling on this case could rip the mask off of the sham of U.S. democracy and reveal the clear dictatorship of the rich. The recent overturn of Roe, the ongoing January 6th committee hearings, and now the turn towards overturning the fundamental democratic principle of 1 person 1 vote marks a new period of political struggle in the United States.

We are joined by Anoa Changa, southern based movement journalist and editor at NewsOne.

In addition, Monday marked the 1 year anniversary of the failed U.S. backed anti-government protests in Cuba. As the crisis of inflation continues and the embargo is still crushing the Cuban people, we look at what real democracy for workers could look like.

Was January 6 a Ruling Class Conspiracy?

Was January 6 a Ruling Class Conspiracy?

July 6, 2022

The January 6 hearings and this term’s Supreme Court decisions are exposing the right-wing nature of the U.S. state and its institutions. January 6 was plotted in the open and with the apparent support of the highest levels of government, and many questions remain unanswered: why were the Capitol Police so outnumbered? Who donated the massive amounts of money required to mobilize in the days and weeks before? And more.

At the same time, the Supreme Court’s right-wing decisions overturning Roe and moving towards a removal of federal power in favor of states is being seized upon by the far right.

We are joined by anthropologist Rae Jereza, whose work focuses on social media, content moderation and the far right.

How Biden Can Step in to Protect Abortion

How Biden Can Step in to Protect Abortion

June 28, 2022

On today’s show, we discuss the unprecedented roll-back of women’s rights and civil liberties with the overturn of the landmark Supreme Court decision Roe V. Wade. After the decision dropped thousands upon thousands of people poured into the streets in places across the country. As of now, in 7 states the abortion trigger laws, written to go into place if Roe was overturned, have gone into effect banning abortion access for millions of women and trans people. In total there are 26 states that have already or will in the coming weeks implement bans or extreme restrictions on abortion access. 11 states have abortion bans that have no exception for rape or incest.

Those states are Arkansas, Florida, Kentucky, Louisiana, Missouri, Oklahoma, Ohio, South Dakota, Tennessee and Texas. On today’s show we ask, how did we get here? What is the legislative path forward? And most pointedly - will the Democrats actually put their money where their mouth is? 

Joining the show is Jessica Mason Pieklo, Executive Editor at Rewire News Group.

Will Julian Assange Actually Be Extradited?

Will Julian Assange Actually Be Extradited?

June 22, 2022

United Kingdom Home Secretary Priti Patel approved the extradition of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange to the United States.

Assange faces 18 charges brought against him by the US Justice Department, 17 of which fall under the Espionage Act. All the charges relate to documents WikiLeaks released in 2010 and 2011, which were provided by US Army whistleblower Chelsea Manning.

With diplomats hinting at action in Australia and a world-wide pressure campaign fighting for Assange’s freedom, there remains many different possibilities for the future of Julian Assange’s case.

We are joined by Kevin Gosztola, the managing editor of Shadowproof.com to discuss these developments. We are also joined by Randy Creidico host of Live on the Fly and Assange Countdown 2 Freedom on WBAI & PRN to discuss the grassroots fightback for Assange’s freedom and what the U.S. might do if extradition moves forward.

Our hosts also dive into the breaking news over the weekend of the major shift in tides in Latin America. Leftist candidates Gustavo Petro & Francia Marquez won the presidential election in Colombia, dealing a major blow to Washington. What does this mean for U.S. hegemony in Latin America? Listen to find out!

Activist Interrupts The Summit of the Americas, “Luis Almagro you have Blood on Your Hands!”

Activist Interrupts The Summit of the Americas, “Luis Almagro you have Blood on Your Hands!”

June 15, 2022

Activist and journalist Walter Smolarek interrupted General Secretary of the OAS, Luis Almagro and confronted Almagro about his role in the coup in Bolivia. We interviewed Walter the day after the interruption at the People’s Summit for Democracy which took place from June 8th through 10th in Los Angeles.

The People’s Summit wasn’t just a protest of Biden’s so-called Summit of the Americas, which was happening at the same time also in Los Angeles, but also brought together artists, activists, journalists, and revolutionaries to uplift the voices of the people and imagine a world that puts people’s democracy first. Hosts Chris and Rachel discuss Rachel’s on the ground coverage of the People’s Summit and reflect on the significance of the event. We review together the powerful speeches made by activists like Cornel West and Oscar Lopez Rivera.

Eyewitness: LA’s Secret Police Spy Network With Mike Rothmiller

Eyewitness: LA’s Secret Police Spy Network With Mike Rothmiller

June 1, 2022

On this week’s episode, we speak with Mike Rothmiller, former LAPD officer with the infamous Office of Criminal Intelligence Division (OCID), a historian and a New York Times best-selling author of many different books including the LA Secret Police: Inside the LAPD’s Elite Spy Network and Bombshell: The Night Bobby Kennedy Killed Marilyn Monroe.

Based on his own experiences and years of research, Mike shares the history and criminal behavior of the OCID, which falsified arrests, spied on politicians and and stars and sometimes acted like private intelligence for the police chief and other powerful figures throughout the late 20th century. Released in 1992, LA Secret Police provides a wealth of information on the now-defunct division.

We also discuss his more recent book, Bombshell, where Mike used the OCID files as well as years of other research and interviews, to make the case that Bobby Kennedy was responsible for the death of Marilyn Monroe nearly 60 years ago.

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