Democracy Now! April 25, 2003

Program Title:
Democracy Now! April 25, 2003
Series Title:
PRA Archive #: 

Hour 1: An infringement of freedom of the press? The FBI opens and seizes mail sent from one Associated Press reporter to another; Who was Deep Throat? A University of Illinois professor and his class say they have uncovered the identity of the Nixon insider who exposed the story behind the break-in of Watergate; An exclusive look at a U.S. bombing in Iraq that killed three family members in Iraq: Journalist Julia Guest discusses the tragedy she came across while reporting in Iraq; Leaked document exposes pro-Israel lobby's manipulation of US public: We talk with Ali Abunimah of the Electronic Intifada Hour 2: US forces detain former Iraqi deputy prime minister Tariq Aziz: We speak with author and journalist Dilip Hiro and Democracy Now s Jeremy Scahill; China quarantines thousands of Beijing residents as SARS worsens: World attention remains fixated on SARS even as 3,000 African children die of malaria every day. We speak with Dan Sermand and Rachel Cohen of Doctors Without Borders; Ex-agent indicted in Tulia drug cases: Officer behind drug raid that led to 46 questionable arrests is charged with perjury

8:00-8:01 Billboard 8:01-8:10 Headlines 8:10-8:11 One Minute Music Break 8:11-8:25: Last September a reporter with the Associated Press in the Philippines sent a FedEx package to a colleague in Washington. The package contained unclassified FBI documents. Reporters send such items often. But this one never made it to Washington. FedEx officials originally said the package may have fallen off its delivery van. But AP officials were suspicious of what happened. And now it turns out the package was never lost. It was seized and confiscated by the FBI. In an April 3 letter released this week, the FBI acknowledged that its agents had confiscated the package at Customs. Unnamed FBI officials told the New York Times the documents seized were too sensitive for public consumption. The package contained a report with detailed materials seized from the apartment of a man convicted in the 1993 World Trade Center bombing. The F.B.I. also announced this week it had opened an internal investigation to determine whether its agents abused their authority by secretly seizing the documents. * Lucy Dalglish, Executive Director of The Reporter's Committee for Freedom of the Press Link: 8:20-8:21 One Minute Music Break 8:25-8:40: It may be one of the greatest mysteries of the 20th century. Who was Deep Throat? Who was the White House insider who tipped off the Washington Post reporters Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein? Based on information from Deep Throat, Woodward and Bernstein began to piece together the deep secrets of the White House. Their stories led to the demise of President Nixon s presidency. For nearly three decades the person s identity has been unknown to but a handful at the Washington Post. But now after a four-year investigation, a University of Illinois journalism professor and his class believe they have solved the mystery. The professor, William Gaines, joins us now . so tell us who was Deep Throat? * William Gaines, University of Illinois professor and two-time Pulitzer-prize winner journalist with the Chicago Tribune. Link: 8:40-8:41 One Minute Music Break 8:41-8:50: A month ago a U.S. bomb landed on an Iraqi farmhouse. Three Iraqi civilians were killed. They were all members of the same family. The story received no attention in the international press but independent journalist Julia Guest came across the scene a day after the attack and files this report. * Julia Guest, independent reporter who recently returned to Britain from Iraq 8:50-8:58: The Electronic Intifada has obtained a document prepared for pro-Israel activists by the public relations firm The Luntz Research Companies and The Israel Project. The document spells out the tactics that Israel and its US advocates should use to maintain support for Israel and its hardline policies. According to Electronic Intifada: The document, entitled "Wexner Analysis: Israeli Communication Priorities 2003," counsels pro-Israel advocates to keep invoking the name of Saddam Hussein, and to stress that Israel "was always behind American efforts to rid the world of this ruthless dictator and liberate their people." Despite his solid support for Israel and Ariel Sharon, the document warns pro-Israel advocates not to compliment or praise President Bush. At the same time it acknowledges that Yasser Arafat has been a great asset to Israel because "he looks the part" of a "terrorist." The installation of Mahmoud Abbas as Palestinian prime minister, and potential replacement for Arafat, comes "at the wrong time," because he has the potential to improve the image of the Palestinians, and that could put the onus on Israel to return to negotiations. The document advises supporters of Israel to appear to affect a "balanced" tone, but admits that in arguing for Israel's policies, the illegal "settlements are our Achilles heel," for which there is no good defense. * Ali Abunimah, founder of the Electronic Intifada Link: 8:58-8:59 Outro and Credits 9:00-9:01 Billboard 9:01-9:10 Headlines 9:10-9:11 One Minute Music Break 9:11-9:35: Former Iraqi Foreign Minister Tariq Aziz has turned himself into US forces. Aziz gave himself up in Baghdad after discussions with US forces through an intermediary, according to the London Guardian. Intelligence experts say Aziz is unlikely to possess information about weapons of mass destruction or Saddam's current whereabouts. He was the only Christian in the former Iraqi government and not a member of Saddam s hand-picked Tikrit clan. He never wielded powder and was just number 43 on the list of 55 most wanted Iraqis. But the fact that he is alive suggests that Saddam Hussein and his son may also still be alive. The Guardian reports Aziz may possess explosive information on the extent of the West s past support for the Saddam. He was appointed foreign minister in 1983 and was largely credited with securing Western support for Iraq against Iran. Aziz became prominent in 1991 following Iraq s invasion of Kuwait, when he led talks in various countries trying to avert war. * Jeremy Scahill, Democracy Now! correspondent who has reported extensively from Iraq. * Dilip Hiro, journalist and author of 24 books including Iraq: In the Eye of the Storm. 9:35-9:36 One Minute Music Break 9:36-9:40: Chinese officials sealed off a second major hospital and threw up roadblocks up around Beijing today to combat the deadly virus SARS. The government announced another five deaths and nearly 200 new cases. China s SARS death toll is now at 115. China yesterday quarantined thousands of Beijing residents who have had contact with suspected carriers of the deadly virus. Isolation orders were imposed on homes, factories and schools, and residents are being monitored to ensure they don t try to flee. Throngs of people are trying to escape at Beijing's railway stations. All of this comes as health advocates are trying to draw attention to malaria today, on Africa Malaria Day. Malaria is far more deadly than SARS - the World Health Organization and the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) are reporting that some 3,000 African children die every day of the disease. One million people die every year. But malaria generally strikes impoverished people in the global South, whearas SARS appears to cross both class and country lines with Toronto, Canada under a WHO travel advisory. The WHO is calling for the most effective malaria drugs to be made more widely available. Even insecticide-treated mosquito nets could reduce malaria transmission by up to 60%. * Dan Sermand, Head of the Doctors Without Borders SARS mission in Hanoi, Vietnam. * Rachel Cohen, Head of Doctors Without Borders Access to Medicines Campaign. 9:40-9:41 One Minute Music Break 9:41-9:58: The undercover officer who ran a controversial drug sting in Tulia four years ago was indicted yesterday on charges of lying under oath during recent hearings to determine if the convictions he obtained were legitimate. In 1998 and 1999 Tom Coleman single-handedly ran an undercover sting operation that ended with the arrest of 46 residents of Tulia. Coleman never presented any audio or video evidence connecting the residents to a crime. But local courts convicted 38 of the residents, most of whom were poor and African American. 13 remain in jail. Yesterday a Swisher County grand jury handed down a three-count indictment that accuses Coleman of making false statements about legal problems he faced in another county while working for the Panhandle Drug Task Force. If convicted, Coleman, who is no longer in law enforcement, faces up to 10 years in prison and a $10,000 fine on each of the three charges. In Tulia Texas, Tom Coleman has been indicted on three counts of perjury. Coleman is the sheriff's deputy in Tulia whose sole testimony led to controversial drug sting that sent 46 people, mostly poor African Americans, to jail. Charges against the 46 are being dropped while Coleman himself may be going to jail. * Randy Credico, Director of the William Moses Kunstler Fund for racial justice * Jeff Blackburn, Civil rights lawyer and head of the Tulia Legal Defense Project 9:58-9:59 Outro and Credits Democracy Now! is produced by Kris Abrams, Mike Burke, Angie Karran, Sharif Abdul Kouddous, Ana Nogueira, Elizabeth Press with help from Noah Reibel and Vilka Tzouras. Mike Di Filippo is our music maestro and engineer. Thanks also to Uri Galed, Angela Alston, Emily Kunstler, Orlando Richards, Simba Rousseau, Rafael delaUz, Gabriel Weiss, Johnny Sender, Rich Kim, Karen Ranucci, Fatima Mojadiddy, Denis Moynihan and Jenny Filipazzo.

Date Recorded on: 
April 25, 2003
Date Broadcast on: 
April 25, 2003
Item duration: 
118 min.
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WBAI; Amy Goodman, host., April 25, 2003
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