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What’s the Scoop?

“Journalism is printing what someone else does not want printed. Everything else is public relations.” George Orwell

The recent disclosure of classified documents by U.S. Air National Guardsman Jack Teixeira was only part of the real scoop; he had been doing so since February of 2022, yet it took more than a year for the intelligence community to realize it.  While the NY Times and Washington Post made much of the fact that it was they who discovered who was doing it, few focused on the content until afterward, as if the real story was just about the security failures; the majority of the documents were mostly about the war in Ukraine, exposing facts, analyses and evaluations that were contrary to what the administration and the media had been telling the American people.

This is not new stuff as we have the ongoing case of Julian Assange, founder of Wikileaks, who in 2010 published a series of leaks provided by US Army intelligence analyst Chelsea Manning, which included the infamous April 2010 “Collateral Murder” video of US soldiers fatally shooting civilians and journalists from a helicopter in Iraq. Assange remains at Belmarsh Prison, UK pending extradition to the US; the charges basically are for exposing war crimes.

Then we have the case of Eric Snowden who in 2013 exposed a global surveillance program by the NSA, of not just criminals and terrorists, but also American citizens and US allies; he’s a guest of Russia who has given him asylum. Despite the fact that a US appeals court has found the NSA program unlawful, it continues, even though the US says it’s ineffective. The news has focused more on Snowden, and his whereabouts, than the unconstitutional government-run surveillance program of its own citizens.

The question arises as to why, unlike journalists of the past, do we have the legacy media so complacent, if not alarmingly accommodative to the corruption and deceit of the political class. The prosecution, if indeed the persecution, of whistleblowers exposing the misrepresentations and outright lies about the illegal actions by our government should be the real scoop, headline news blasting such misdeeds as we had back in the 1970s. 

Most relevant are the Pentagon Papers, leaked by intelligence analyst Daniel Ellsberg to the press in 1971 that exposed US actions in not only North Vietnam but also Cambodia and Laos, an expansion of a “war” that was never even declared, constitutionally illegal regardless of the Congressional abdication of its responsibilities; none of this had been reported by the American media prior to this. Subsequently this revelation ignited a journalistic tsunami that eventually led to the Watergate investigations.

Journalists Bod Woodward and Carl Bernstein of the Washington Post began an investigation of the 1972 break-in of the Democratic National Committee offices at Watergate in Washington, D.C., eventually exposing the involvement of President Nixon and leading to his resignation. Fittingly, the focus was on the documents found that exposed the criminal actions and who was ultimately responsible.

These are great examples of how a free, objective and insightful press serves the best interests of the American people, an essential element of liberty; the complacency and accommodation by our current legacy media does nothing of the kind. The old newspaperman’s hound dog persistence to get the real scoop has been replaced with advocacy journalism, which is nothing more than the very absence of getting the facts in print should those facts not support a preferred narrative.

Now back to Jack Teixeira, an IT geek who is no Daniel Ellsberg, but whether wittingly or not exposed facts about a war that is illegal, misrepresented by our government, and likely will result in a similar outcome, if not worse. Ellsberg had conducted intense research into US activities in Indochina from 1940 to 1968, the conclusion of which was detailed analyses and evaluations that the war was illegal, a waste of both capital and human resources, unwinnable, and therefore detrimental to the interest of the America people.

While Ellsberg was indicted under the Espionage Act of 1917, all charges were eventually dismissed given the evidence of gross governmental misconduct. Hopefully similar justice awaits Jack Teixeira and the American people with an end to the US proxy war in Ukraine, which has nothing to do with defending democracy, and everything to do with corruption and yet more deceit by our government, with whom, as Ron Paul so succinctly observed, “Truth is treason in the empire of lies.”

Author: jvi7350

Politically I am an independent. While I tend to avoid labels, I consider myself a Libertarian. I find our politics to have deteriorated to a current state of ranting tribialism, and a growing disregard for individual rights; based on the axiom that silence is consent, I choose instead to speak out and therefore launched this blog.

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