Democracy Now! February 18 2003

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Democracy Now! February 18 2003
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A respected Greek professor is detained, shackled and asked if he is anti-American: a Democracy Now! exclusive; They evidently believe that the means of violence in their hands are so extraordinary that they can dismiss with contempt anyone who stands in their way : professor Noam Chomsky on U.S. empire and the global movement against it; Police crack down on anti-war protesters from New York to Colorado Springs to San Francisco

9:00-9:01 Billboard 9:01-9:04 Headlines 9:04-9:06 Two-minute music break 9:06-9:12: Right now, a Democracy Now! exclusive. Eugene Angelopoulos is a Professor at the National Technical University of Athens. New York University invited him to speak at a conference on Philosophy and Politics last week. But when Professor Angelopoulos arrived at John F. Kennedy airport, he was detained, shackled, and asked if he is anti-American and whether he opposes the war against Iraq. This is the first time his story is being told. I spoke with him late last week. Tape: Eugene Angelopoulos, Professor, National Technical University of Athens Professor Angelopoulos agreed to the FBI s request for a second interview on condition it be held on what he considered neutral ground, at New York University. When he returned to his hotel after leaving the Democracy Now! studios, he found a phone message from the FBI asking him to instead come to the New York Field Office so that they could have an uninterrupted conversation. He respectfully declined their request. I spoke with him a little later outside the Greek Consulate on Manhattan s Upper East side. He was on his way to the airport where he would take the last flight out of New York before the blizzard. Tape: Eugene Angelopoulos, Professor, National Technical University of Athens, speaking outside the Greek Consulate Professor Angelopoulos addressed the Philosophy as Politics conference at NYU on Feb. 15. He opened his address with these remarks: Many centuries have gone by from the time when Athens was the leading democracy of the world. Being the cradle of democracy and philosophy did not prevent Athens to declare war and slaughter the citizens of Milos for the declared reasons, If you are not with us, you are against us and we must make an example, as reported by Thucydides an Athenian man. Today US troops are preparing to invade Iraq while lots of US citizens demonstrate their opposition to war. Today the leading democracy of the world is the United States. Contradiction is inherent to democracy and every time, one term of the contradiction prevails. I don t know if this is a fight between good and evil: this is for this assembly of philosophers to debate. But it is good for the world to know that America has many choices and voices, and not only the one of her president. Hope is not dead, and I am sure this conference will help keep hope alive. Professor Angelopoulos caught the last flight out on Sunday night, just before the snowstorm shut down Kennedy airport. He is spending a week in Paris, France, where he hopes to find a little peace. 9:12-9:20: "People have a right to protest; people can say what they think. Those were the words of National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice on Sunday, the day after millions protested against George Bush s plans to launch a first-strike attack on Iraq. But across the country demonstrators questioned how much of a right they still have to protest. In New York the Justice Department teamed with the NYPD to deny protest organizers a march permit. They cited national security. Once the protest began on Saturday unknown tens of thousands of demonstrators were penned in by police blocks from the stage. Many never saw the stage or heard a speaker. Some 300 people were arrested. United for Peace and Justice organizers are holding a press conference to discuss the reports of rampant police misconduct. In Colorado Springs anti-war protesters are blasting local police for using riot gear, tear gas and rubber bullets to disperse participants as a peace demonstration was winding down on Saturday. But according to a report in today s Denver Post, police maintain the response was appropriate. And in San Francisco 46 demonstrators were arrested. Five remain this morning in police custody. Guest: Leslie Cagan, coordinator, United for Peace and Justice, the group that organized the massive rally against war in NYC on Feb. 15th, Tape: Bob Choflet, protester who attended an anti-war rally in Colorado Springs who was tear-gassed and arrested 9:19-9:20 One Minute Music Break 9:20-9:4: Millions of people protested this weekend against George Bush s plans to launch a first-strike attack on Iraq. It is the first time in world history that such a massive anti-war mobilization has taken place even before the war has started. Well, world-renowned professor Noam Chomsky discussed this unprecedented global movement in an address he gave earlier this month at the World Social Forum in Porto Alegre. Among the topics Chomsky addressed was Turkey, a crucial country in the Bush Administration s drive toward war. Turkey is demanding that the U.S. allows them to place up to 80,000 troops deep inside Iraq in case of a war. This according to an exclusive report in Newsweek. It comes as Turkey and the U.S. are negotiating whether the U.S. can use Turkish land to stage an attack on Iraq. Turkey is also seeking $30 billion in aid from the U.S. and permission to take over portions of Northern Iraq. And yesterday the Turkish president said his country will only allow US soldiers to use Turkey to attack Iraq if the UN passes a second resolution authorizing the use of force against Iraq. Although 95 percent of the Turkish population opposes war in Iraq, the government has expressed willingness to help the U.S. Chomsky shared the stage in a local soccer stadium with Booker Prize-winning author Arundhati Roy, and spoke to a crowd of 15,000 people. Scoop Magazine said of Chomksy s speech, If a 73-year old linguistics professor from a nerd school like MIT can rock a stadium, maybe there s hope for a revolution after all. Guest: Noam Chomsky, M.I.T. professor and author numerous books including 9/11 and the forthcoming Power and Terror 9:41-9:42 One Minute Music Break 9:42-9:58 Chomsky, continued. 9:58-9:59 Outro and Credits Democracy Now! is produced by Kris Abrams, Mike Burke, Angie Karran, Ana Nogiera and Alex Wolfe. Mike Di Filippo is our engineer and webmaster.

Date Recorded on: 
February 18 2003
Date Broadcast on: 
February 18 2003
Item duration: 
59 min.
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WBAI; Amy Goodman, host., February 18 2003
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