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Costa Rica related but pretty far afield otherwise. It seems, up until murdering Nicole Brown and Ronald Goldman, OJ Simpson was slated to star in a new show for NBC that had similar themes to some of the work Gary Webb had done around that time period in uncovering the contra-cocaine scandal ..
...Hitz acknowledged that cocaine smugglers played a significant early role in the Nicaraguan contra movement and that the CIA intervened to block an image-threatening 1984 federal investigation into a San Francisco-based drug ring with suspected ties to the contras, the so-called “Frogman Case.”...
CIA Drug Asset
Along the Southern Front, in Costa Rica, the drug evidence centered on the forces of Eden Pastora, another leading contra commander...
Yes, O.J. Simpson really made a 1994 NBC pilot titled Frogmen that was locked away forever http://uproxx.it/1UeS3Vm
11:13 PM - 15 Mar 2016
The seventh episode of The People V. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story focused mainly on the infamous bloody glove moment at the trial, where Christopher Darden directed Simpson to try it on only to have the plan backfire when the glove appeared too tight. It was an important moment in the trial, and therefore an important moment in the series, but it was completely overshadowed — for me, at least — by a brief discussion Marcia Clark had with Christopher Darden’s friends about O.J. Simpson’s starring role in a scrapped 1994 NBC pilot titled Frogmen.
Yes, Frogmen was a real thing. It was described at the time as a kind of A-Team-esque series about beach bum former Navy SEALs. If you read that sentence and thought, “Well that sounds like an incredible television show,” there’s a good reason for that: It sounds like an incredible television show. From a 2000 Los Angeles Times article about the pilot:
The premise centers on a team of Navy SEALs who, as described in the pilot, “take on special assignments for the government and private sector.”
Simpson plays their leader, John “Bullfrog” Burke, who goes to Costa Rica with four fellow ex-SEALs ...
Posted by MinM | Tue Mar 22, 2016, 12:09 AM (0 replies)
Posted by MinM | Tue Mar 15, 2016, 11:47 PM (0 replies)
Gravel was opposed to the war in Vietnam. He had filibustered on the floor of the Senate to block the draft. Ellsberg had given a copy of the papers to Ben Bagdikian, an editor at The Washington Post, on the condition that he give a copy to Sen. Gravel. Bagdikian met Gravel at midnight and transferred the papers from the trunk of one car to another outside The Mayflower Hotel. In order to enter these classified documents into the Congressional Record, Gravel found a loophole, which he recalled to me recently on the “Democracy Now!” news hour...
As Pulitzer prize-winning journalist Professor Ben Bagdikian puts it, whereas once the men and women who owned the media could fit in a “modest hotel ballroom,” the same owners (all male) could now fit into a “generous phone booth.” He could have added that, whilst a phone box may not exactly be the chosen venue for the likes of Rupert Murdoch and Sumner Redstone, these individuals do indeed meet at plush venues such as Idaho’s Sun Valley to identify and forge their collective interests...
Started in 1967, the CIA's Operation CHAOS was (is) an illegal domestic program to attack domestic dissent against the Vietnam War and activist groups in general.
When Ramparts Magazine started exposing CIA manipulation of Students for a Democratic Society and other illegal domestic tricks, Richard Helms cooked up a plan to target dissent under the cover of targeting terrorism...
One of Capital City's early founders was William Casey, who would later become Ronald Reagan's Director of the CIA. At the time of Casey's nomination, the press expressed surprise that Reagan would hire a businessman whose last-known intelligence experience was limited to OSS operations in World War II. The fact is, however, that Casey had never left intelligence. Throughout the Cold War he kept a foot in both worlds, in private business as well as the CIA. A history of Casey's business dealings reveals that he was an aggressive player who saw nothing wrong with bending the law to further his own conservative agenda. When he became implicated as a central figure in the Iran-Contra scandal, many Washington insiders considered it a predictable continuation of a very shady career...
By the 1980s, Capital Cities had grown powerful enough that it was now poised to hunt truly big game: a major television network. A vulnerable target appeared in the form of ABC, whose poor management in the early 80s was driving both its profits and stocks into oblivion. Back then, ABC's journalistic slant was indeed liberal; its criticism of the Reagan Administration had drawn the wrath of conservatives everywhere, from Wall Street to Washington. This was in marked contrast to the rest of the White House press corps, which was, in Bagdikian's words, "stunningly uncritical" of Reagan. Behind the scenes, Reagan was deregulating the FCC and eliminating anti-monopoly laws for the media, a fact the media appreciated and rewarded. The only exception was ABC. Sam Donaldson's penetrating questions during press conferences were so embarrassing to Reagan that his handlers scheduled the fewest Presidential press conferences in modern history...
Posted by MinM | Sun Mar 13, 2016, 03:00 PM (0 replies)
Interesting piece from the last POTUS election cycle...
Mitt Romney’s “Pinochet Moment”
Posted on September 20, 2012 by Daniel Hopsicker
...Speaking about US policy towards Honduras, Romney accused President Obama of backing a "pro-Marxist" leader in Honduras, faulting him for not more quickly and enthusiastically supporting the military coup in 2009 that deposed the elected President of a fledgling democracy.
That Romney chose to say anything at all about a small nation in Central America was somewhat surprising, especially since he hasn't been specific about much else.
But, as he must know, Honduras is important to US foreign policy for only one reason: Controlling Hondurus is important to controlling the drug trade.
Romney was signaling that in a Republican Administration, a return to the good old days when death squads could just "disappear" inconvenient people would be A-OK with him...
Posted by MinM | Sat Mar 5, 2016, 01:41 PM (1 replies)
In the fall of 2010, Clizbe was summoned from his Northern Virginia home to a restaurant at Baltimore-Washington International Airport for lunch with a Department of Defense contractor named Kerry Patton. The two had grown friendly on an email list affiliated with the International Association for Intelligence Education. The lunch was Patton’s idea; he wanted Clizbe to meet a mentor of his, Wayne Simmons. Simmons had served in the C.I.A. for 27 years and appeared regularly as an analyst on Fox News. He was ‘‘all Kerry could talk about,’’ Clizbe recalls.
Though Simmons had become well known to people in that right-wing media circle, Clizbe didn’t know his name. He never encountered Simmons during his days with the C.I.A. — it’s a massive, compartmentalized organization, after all — and he didn’t have cable TV. Still, Simmons and Clizbe should have had plenty to discuss. Their political leanings were similar enough. Simmons claimed to be ‘‘far right of Attila the Hun.’’ But something about Simmons didn’t sit right with Clizbe.
Over lunch, it seemed to Clizbe that Simmons was oblivious to the routine ‘‘butt-sniffing’’ that C.I.A. veterans routinely engage in: questions about time spent at the ‘‘Farm’’ and about stints in war zones. Simmons said he had operated separately from Langley; he hinted at brazen operations against drug cartels, opining on the painful isolation of an operative’s existence. ‘‘ ‘You and me, we know what it’s like,’ ’’ Clizbe recalls him saying. ‘‘ ‘It’s how we have to live our lives.’ ’’
Clizbe added: ‘‘He was so full of bluster that anybody who hadn’t been in the C.I.A. would have had their socks knocked off. But the things he said were so not C.I.A.’’ ...
Posted by MinM | Wed Mar 2, 2016, 10:48 AM (2 replies)
There was throwaway line at the end of an episode in season 1 of Person of Interest about Iran being behind the 1994 Buenos Aires bombing.
Alberto Nisman, along with many others, were heavily invested in that narrative...
article | posted January 18, 2008 (web only)
Bush's Iran/Argentina Terror Frame-Up
...Bernazzani admitted to me that until 2003, the case against Iran was merely "circumstantial." But he claimed a breakthrough came that year, with the identification of the alleged suicide bomber as Ibrahim Hussein Berro, a Lebanese Hezbollah militant, who, according to a Lebanese radio broadcast, was killed in a military operation against Israeli forces in southern Lebanon in September 1984, two months after the AMIA bombing. "We are satisfied that we have identified the bomber based on the totality of the data streams," Bernazzani told me, citing "a combination of physical and witness evidence." But the Berro identification, too, was marked by evidence of fabrication and manipulation...
In September 2004, a Buenos Aires court acquitted Telleldin and the police officials who had been jailed years earlier, and in August 2005 Judge Galeano was impeached and removed from office. But Galeano's successors, prosecutors Alberto Nisman and Marcelo Martinez Burgos, pressed on, hoping to convince the world that they could identify Berro as the bomber. They visited Detroit, Michigan, where they interviewed two brothers of Berro and obtained photos of Berro from them. They then turned to the only witness who claimed she had seen the white Trafic at the scene of the crime--Nicolasa Romero.
In November 2005, Nisman and Burgos announced that Romero had identified Berro from the Detroit photos as the same person she had seen just before the bombing. Romero, on the other hand, said she "could not be completely certain" that Berro was the man at the scene. In court testimony, in fact, she had said she had not recognized Berro from the first set of set of four photographs she had been shown or even from a second set. She finally saw some "similarity in the face" in one of the Berro photographs, but only after she was shown a police sketch based on her description after the bombing...
Despite a case against Iran that lacked credible forensic or eyewitness evidence and relied heavily on dubious intelligence and a discredited defector's testimony, Nisman and Burgos drafted their indictment against six former Iranian officials in 2006. However, the government of Néstor Kirchner displayed doubts about going forward with a legal case. According to the Forward newspaper, when American Jewish groups pressed Kirchner's wife, Christina, about the indictments at a UN General Assembly in New York in September 2006, she indicated that there was no firm date for any further judicial action against Iran. Yet the indictment was released the following month.
Both the main lawyer representing the AMIA, Miguel Bronfman, and Judge Rodolfo Canicoba Corral, who later issued the arrest warrants for the Iranians, told the BBC last May that pressure from Washington was instrumental in the sudden decision to issue the indictments the following month. Corral indicated that he had no doubt that the Argentine authorities had been urged to "join in international attempts to isolate the regime in Tehran."
A senior White House official just called the AMIA case a "very clear definition of what Iranian state sponsorship of terrorism means." In fact, the US insistence on pinning that crime on Iran in order to isolate the Tehran regime, even though it had no evidence to support that accusation, is a perfect definition of cynical creation of an accusation in the service of power interests.
Posted by MinM | Wed Mar 2, 2016, 09:57 AM (1 replies)
Posted by MinM | Thu Feb 25, 2016, 01:18 AM (0 replies)
Obama has really walked a fine line in those regards.
Posted by MinM | Wed Feb 24, 2016, 04:09 PM (0 replies)
Democracy Now! @democracynow 2 hours ago
El Salvador: 4 Former Soldiers Arrested for 1989 Murders of 6 Jesuit Priests http://owl.li/Y5bD8
When I read this story at Democracy Now! it sounded a lot like the plot from Oliver Stone's Salvador. Only thing being that the movie predated this by at least 3-years.
Did Bill O’Reilly Cover Up a War Crime in El Salvador?
Posted by MinM | Mon Feb 8, 2016, 11:17 PM (1 replies)
Jane Mayer told Dave Davies on Fresh Air that the Kochs tried to intimidate FBI agent Jim Elroy...
DAVIES: This is FRESH AIR. And if you're just joining us, we're speaking with Jane Mayer. She's an investigative reporter and a staff writer for The New Yorker. Her new book is "Dark Money : The Hidden History Of The Billionaires Behind The Rise Of The Radical Right." You know, you write about a number of cases in which adversaries of the Kochs believe they were followed or investigated. Give us a sense of who's making these claims and what you think are their credibility.
MAYER: Yeah, this is interesting. I came across this pattern of people who had tried to challenge the Kochs or Koch Industries in one way or another who felt that they were being targeted, particularly by private investigators.
DAVIES: And in some cases - in some cases, employees or former employees of Koch Industries, right?
MAYER: That's right. You got the sense that if their stories are true, that this was a company that plays and played super hardball. And interestingly, among those who've lodged such complaints who I've interviewed were three former prosecutors, government prosecutors - two federal ones, one state prosecutor - who have tried to either press charges against Koch Industries or to investigate it. And in each case, they felt that somebody was following them or someone was going through their garbage or somebody was trying to dig dirt on them. There's a reference to it in one of the Senate reports about the investigation into whether Koch Industries stole oil from Indian reservations. It specifically mentions that some of the investigators felt that they too were being investigated, but by Koch Industries. Let me tell you one story about - there was an FBI agent who worked on the Senate investigation into Koch Industries. His name is Jim Elroy, and I interviewed him. And he told me that he was so certain he was being tailed that one day, he just stopped his car and confronted the person who he thought was tailing him. He took out his badge. He took out his gun. And he said to this person who he thought was following him, you tell me what you're doing and who you're doing it for. And the guy sort of, you know, froze and said, I'm working for Koch Industries, he says. And Elroy told me that he told this fellow, you tell your bosses if they try to do this again, you're going to be in a body bag. So Elroy's kind of a tough guy, but he - he had investigated organized crime in Oklahoma before he had investigated Koch Industries. And he told me he'd never encountered the kinds of tactics that he thought were being employed against him when he investigated Koch Industries.
DAVIES: So it sounds like these seem credible. There's no finding by a prosecutor or jury that substantiates them. What do the Kochs' representatives say when they're asked about these things?
MAYER: Well, in the case of Elroy, they said at the time - they denied it. But then they also confirmed another case around the same time, where somebody said that - it was a witness to the Senate investigation who said that he thought he was being smeared. And they admitted that they had provided sort of some negative information to the press on him.
DAVIES: Now, you wrote about the Kochs in a 2010 piece in The New Yorker. And then you were attacked by conservatives. What happened? ...
The way Jane Mayer described the Kochs having their enemies tailed reminded me of the Karen Silkwood story.
Posted by MinM | Sun Jan 24, 2016, 01:21 PM (1 replies)