The ruling FOG (Forces of Greed) spin news stories in their favor and keep the masses distracted with celebrity gossip and reality shows. Each week on Clearing The Fog, we feature guests who are working to expose the truth and offer real solutions to the current crises faced by our nation and the world. Knowledge is power, and with this knowledge you will be empowered to act to shift power to the people and weaken the corporate stranglehold on our lives. Our podcast is brought to you each week without advertising.

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Activists Stay In Venezuelan Embassy 24/7 To Protect It

By Margaret Flowers and Kevin Zeese, Clearing the FOG. -

On March 18, opposition leader Juan Guaido’s people took over the Venezuelan consulate in New York  City and the military attaché office in Washington, DC. They announced they will take over the Venezuelan embassy in Washington, DC next. Activists, with permission of the legitimate Venezuelan government, have been staying at the embassy 24/7 for over two weeks now to protect it from opposition people entering. They may attempt to do so as soon as April 25. The US is setting a new precedent by failing a coup attempt but pretending it succeeded and turning assets over to the opposition anyway. We speak with Medea Benjamin, co-founder of CODE PINK, who is staying with us in the embassy.

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Guest:

Medea Benjamin is the co-founder of the women-led peace group CODEPINK and the co-founder of the human rights group Global Exchange. She has been an advocate for social justice for more than 40 years. Described as “one of America’s most committed — and most effective — fighters for human rights” by New York Newsday, and “one of the high profile leaders of the peace movement” by the Los Angeles Times, she was one of 1,000 exemplary women from 140 countries nominated to receive the Nobel Peace Prize on behalf of the millions of women who do the essential work of peace worldwide. She received numerous prizes, including: the Martin Luther King, Jr. Peace Prize from the Fellowship of Reconciliation, the Peace Prize by the US Peace Memorial, the Gandhi Peace Award, and the Nuclear Age Peace Foundation Award. She is a former economist and nutritionist with the United Nations and World Health Organization.

In 2000, she was a Green Party candidate for the California Senate. During the 1990s, Medea focused her efforts on tackling the problem of unfair trade as promoted by the World Trade Organization. Widely credited as the woman who brought Nike to its knees and helped place the issue of sweatshops on the national agenda, Medea was a key player in the campaign that won a $20 million settlement from 27 US clothing retailers for the use of sweatshop labor in Saipan. She also pushed Starbucks and other companies to start carrying fair trade coffee.

Since the September 11, 2001 tragedy, Medea has been working to promote a U.S. foreign policy that would respect human rights and gain us allies instead of contributing to violence and undermining our international reputation. Medea has also been on the forefront of the anti-drone movement, publishing Drone Warfare: Killing by Remote Control in 2013. She organized the first-ever International Drone Summit, led delegations to Pakistan and Yemen to meet with drone strike victims, and directly questioned President Obama during his 2013 foreign policy address. The campaign against weaponized drones has helped reduce the number of civilian casualties and force the government to compensate the families of innocent victims.

Medea’s work for justice in Israel/Palestine includes taking numerous delegations to Gaza, organizing the Gaza Freedom March in 2010, participating in the Freedom Flotillas and opposing the policies of the Israel lobby group AIPAC. In 2011 she was in Tahrir Square during the Egyptian uprising and in 2014 she was detained, beaten and deported by the Egyptian security forces. In 2012 she was part of a human rights delegation to Bahrain in support of democracy activists; she was tear-gassed, arrested and deported by the Bahraini government. In 2015 and 2018 she participated in Women Cross the DMZ, an international delegation of women calling for peace in Korea.

Her groundbreaking work on the negative consequences of the US-Saudi alliance include the 2016 book Kingdom of the Unjust: Behind the U.S.-Saudi Connectionand the 2016 International Summit on Saudi Arabia. Her latest book, Inside Iran: The Real History and Politics of the Islamic Republic of Iran, is part of a campaign to prevent a war with Iran and instead promote normal trade and diplomatic relations.

Medea is the author of ten books.  Her articles appear regularly in outlets such as The Guardian, The Huffington Post, CommonDreams, Alternet, and The Hill. Medea can be reached at: medea@codepink.org or @medeabenjamin.

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How Momentum Is Growing To Tax The Rich And Reduce Inequality

By Margaret Flowers and Kevin Zeese, Clearing the FOG. -

In the middle of the last century, there was a large and secure working class. Then, changes to the tax structure distributed more and more of the wealth to the richest and hollowed out the middle class. Now, levels of inequality in the United States are unsustainable as the top one-tenth of one percent (0.1%) has wealth equal to the bottom 80%. Momentum is growing to make the tax system more fair at both the state and federal levels. We speak with Sam Pizzigati about the history of taxes and what policies are currently being proposed.

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Guest:

Sam Pizzigati is a veteran labor journalist and Institute for Policy Studies associate fellow who co-edits Inequality.org, the Institute’s weekly newsletter on our great divides. He also contributes a regular column to OtherWords, the IPS national nonprofit editorial service.

Sam, now retired from the labor movement, spent two decades directing the publishing program at America’s largest union, the 2.8-million-member National Education Association, and before that edited the national publications of three other U.S. trade unions.

Sam’s own writing has revolved around economic inequality since the early 1990s. His op-eds on income and wealth concentration have appeared in periodicals all around the world, from the New York Times to Le Monde Diplomatique.

Sam has authored four books and co-edited two others. His 2004 book, Greed and Good: Understanding the Inequality that Limits Our Lives, won an “outstanding title” honor from the American Library Association’s book review journal. His 2012 title, The Rich Don’t Always Win: The Forgotten Triumph over Plutocracy that Created the American Middle Class, 1900-1970, explores how average Americans ended the nation’s original Gilded Age. Sam’s most recent book, The Case for a Maximum Wage, offers a politically plausible path toward ending that Gilded Age’s second coming.

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Busting The Myths About NATO; Why NATO’s Got To Go

By Margaret Flowers and Kevin Zeese, Clearing the FOG. -

On April 4, 2019, North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) foreign ministers met in Washington, DC to celebrate its 70th anniversary. While both parties in Congress applauded NATO, peace and justice activists held a week of action in protest, disrupting meetings, shutting down an entrance to the State Department and taking the streets. Activists are trying to expose the truth about NATO as an institution founded to prevent the rise of left movements, protect capitalism and provide cover for illegal wars. We speak with Yves Engler, a Montreal-based author and activist, about the history of NATO and why it’s time to abolish it.

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Guest:

Yves Engler is a former Vice President of the Concordia Student Union, Yves Engler is a Montréal-based activist and author. He has  published ten books: Left, Right — Marching to the Beat of Imperial Canada; A Propaganda System—How Canada’s Government, Corporations, Media and Academia Sell War and Exploitation, Canada in Africa — 300 Years of Aid and Exploitation, The Ugly Canadian — Stephen Harper’s Foreign Policy, Lester Pearson’s Peacekeeping — The Truth May Hurt, Stop Signs — Cars and Capitalism on the Road to Economic, Social and Ecological Decay (with Bianca Mugyenyi), The Black Book of Canadian Foreign Policy (Shortlisted for the Mavis Gallant Prize for Non Fiction in the Quebec Writers’ Federation Literary Awards), Playing Left Wing: From Rink Rat to Student Radical and (with Anthony Fenton) Canada in Haiti: Waging War on The Poor Majority and Canada and Israel: Building Apartheid. Yves was born in Vancouver, where he grew up playing hockey. He was a peewee teammate of NHL star Mike Ribeiro at Huron Hochelaga in Montréal before playing in the B.C. Junior League. After being suspended from Concordia University, he turned to research and writing, but he’s still a fan of the great Canadian sport. To contact Yves email Yvesengler(at)hotmail.com

Yves first became active in Canadian foreign policy issues in the early 2000s. Initially focused on anti-corporate globalization organizing, the year he was an elected vice president of the Concordia Student Union Benjamin Netanyahu was blocked from speaking at the university. The protests sparked a massive backlash against student activism on campus. Later in the school year the US invaded Iraq. In the lead-up to the war Yves helped mobilize students to attend a number of massive antiwar demonstrations and co-founded a small collective called Block the Empire, which organized an early morning blockade of the US consulate in Montréal. Later Block the Empire organized a number of events targeting arms manufacturers, including a tour of Montréal’s weapons industry.

While these efforts challenged Canadian foreign policy, it was only after Ottawa helped overthrow the democratically elected Haitian government in 2004 that Yves began to seriously question Canada’s peacekeeper self-image. As he learned about Canada’s contribution to violent, anti-democratic policies in Haiti Yves began to directly challenge this country’s foreign policy. Over the next three years he traveled to Haiti and helped organize dozens of marches, talks, actions, press conferences, etc. critical of Canada’s role in the country. Yves also co-authored Canada in Haiti: Waging War Against the Poor Majority and helped establish the Canada Haiti Action Network.

As the situation in Haiti stabilized Yves began reading everything he could find about Canadian foreign policy, which culminated in the Black Book of Canadian Foreign Policy. This research began a process that later led to Canada and Israel: Building Apartheid, Lester Pearson’s Peacekeeping: The Truth May Hurt, The Ugly Canadian: Stephen Harper’s Foreign Policy, Canada in Africa: 300 Years of Aid and Exploitation, A Propaganda System: How Canada’s Government, Corporations, Media and Academia Sell War and Exploitation and Left, Right — Marching to the Beat of Imperial Canada.

While Yves regularly attend rallies and demonstrations in Montreal, since the release of the Black Book of Canadian Foreign Policy in 2009 the bulk of his activism has focused on organizing and coordinating hundreds of speaking events concerning the subject of his books. Through these efforts Yves has worked with antiwar, mining justice, as well as Palestine, Africa, Haiti and Latin America solidarity groups across the country.

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Assange And Manning Sacrifice Their Freedom For Our Right To Know

By Margaret Flowers and Kevin Zeese, Clearing the FOG. -

Julian Assange, the editor of Wikileaks, a media outlet for information provided by whistleblowers, has been in confinement in the Ecuadorian Embassy in London for almost seven years and is experiencing increasingly harsh treatment. Chelsea Manning, who leaked information to Wikileaks and spent seven years in prison for it, is back in prison for her refusal to testify against Assange in a secret court. We speak with Joe Lauria of Consortium News about why Assange and Manning are sacrificing so much to protect our right to know what our governments are doing, the historical significance of their deeds and what we must do to support them.

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Guest:

Joe Lauria is the editor of Consortium News, taking over after the death a year ago of Robert Parry, its founder. Lauria has been a United Nations correspondent for 25 years. This included six and a half years as the Wall Street Journal correspondent based at U.N. Headquarters in New York. Mr. Lauria has covered ever major world crisis that has come before the U.N. over the past quarter century. Among those stories was the fraught diplomacy before the First Gulf War and the 2003 U.S. invasion of Iraq; the 1990s wars that broke up Yugoslavia; the genocide in Rwanda; the destruction of Libya; the coup d’etat in Ukraine and resulting civil war; the devastating conflict in Syria; African coups and the U.N. response to earthquakes, tsunamis and other natural disasters. Mr. Lauria has interviewed numerous presidents, prime ministers, foreign ministers, and ambassadors and questioned many other leaders in press encounters, including Yassir Arafat, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, Robert Mugabe, Jacques Chirac, Jimmy Carter, Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama. He reported numerous exclusives and front- page U.N.-related stories for the WSJ. These included a U.S. exclusive on the U.N. General Assembly considering a new probe into Dag Hammarskjöld’s death; the U.N. envoy to Yemen saying Saudi bombing derailed a political settlement close to completion; senior U.S. officials asking the U.N. to pull its chemical weapons inspectors from Syria; Rwandan President Paul Kagame saying he would’t pull his troops from Somalia after a critical U.N. report; the Indian foreign minister suggesting India favored negotiating with the Taliban; Somalia’s prime minister saying he would welcome a bin Laden-style US raid on militants in his country; China revising its anti-separatist stance in South Sudan; and U.N. corruption favoring Price Waterhouse Coopers on a multi-million dollar contract and more. Before the WSJ, Mr. Lauria was the Boston Globe’s U.N. correspondent for six years and has also reported from the U.N. for the London Daily Telegraph and the Daily Mail, The Johannesburg Star, Montreal Gazette, Ottawa Citizen and Vancouver Sun; and the German Press Agency dpa. Mr. Lauria has been an investigative reporter for The Sunday Times of London, having taken part in investigations that led to the suspension of a British member of parliament for corruption and the unmasking of an FBI/MI5 double agent. At Bloomberg News he led an investigation that brought about the resignation of an Argentine provincial governor after he issued a counterfeit government bond.  Mr. Lauria’s work has also appeared in The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Guardian, New York Magazine, and other publications. He is the author of two books. The first was with former U.S. Senator and presidential candidate Mike Gravel, a history of U.S. foreign policy and the defense industry, published by Seven Stories Press, with a Foreword by Daniel Ellsberg. It was entirely conceived, researched and written by Mr. Lauria. The second was a ghostwritten history of the three major Middle East religions with an emphasis on the history of Islam.  Mr. Lauria has traveled to more than 70 nations. Much of his reporting has focused on the Middle East, having visited the region more than two dozen times in the past four years, including lengthy stays in Egypt and Iraq. With the exception of Yemen and Iran, he’s visited every country in the region, many multiple times. Mr. Lauria has won two journalism awards and taught journalism at two U.S. universities. He has lectured on three continents and has appeared numerous times on radio and television, including on CNN (where he was interviewed by Wolf Blitzer), Good Morning America (interviewed by George Stephanopoulos) as well as on the BBC, the PBS News Hour, C- Span, Al Jazeera, Al Arabiya, Sky Arabia, and RT.  He’s also been a guest on Leonard Lopate’s and Brian Lehrer’s radio shows on WNYC in New York.

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How Venezuelans Are Holding Their Own Against US Imperialism

By Margaret Flowers and Kevin Zeese, Clearing the FOG. -

The United States and its allies are waging a long term battle for Venezuela’s abundant resources, which include oil, gas, gold, diamonds and minerals. The Venezuelan government, through the Bolivarian Process, is trying to use those resources to meet the needs of its people for housing, education, health care, food and more. We speak with Paul Dobson, a resident of Venezuela and journalist, about how Venezuelans are organized to resist the escalating attacks by the US and its allies and how US efforts are backfiring by consolidating support for the democratically-elected President, Nicolás Maduro.

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Guest:

Paul Dobson is a Brit with a firm repudiation of the monarchic British political system. He is also an MA graduate specialised in history and philosophy from Edinburgh University. He has lived, worked, and extensively knows nearly every different region of Venezuela, having lived there since 2006.

An ex-tour guide, anaconda-trapper, bird watcher, and map producer, Paul is a great lover of the stunning natural life which can be found in Venezuela. Having finally settled in the beautiful Andean state of Merida in the west of Venezuela with his wife, Paul is currently involved in a range of political projects including being an active member of Venezuela’s Committee of International Solidarity (COSI) and a number of grassroots collectives ranging from communicational projects to ecological issues as well as his communal council. He is a journalist with Venezuelanalysis. He is also a specialist on the Venezuelan electoral system.

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The Politics Of Pesticides: Monsanto Under Fire

By Margaret Flowers and Kevin Zeese, Clearing the FOG. -

Through a series of mergers, pesticide companies are consolidating, taking over seed companies and pushing genetically-engineered foods. Companies such as Monsanto, now merged with Bayer, and Dow and Dupont, which have merged, are chemical companies with a long history of producing toxic chemicals, including chemical weapons used in warfare. We speak with Mitchel Cohen and Robin Esser, authors of “The fight Against Monsanto’s Roundup: The Politics of Pesticides,” who spoke about the corruption and health impacts of pesticides as well as the connections to imperialism and colonialism.

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And visit the new Popular Resistance Podcast Network at www.PopularResistance.org/prpn/

Guests:

Mitchel Cohen coordinates the No Spray Coalition in New York City,which successfully sued the City government over its indiscriminate spraying of toxic pesticides.He graduated from Stuyvesant High School in Manhattan and received his B.A. from SUNY Stony Brook, where he co-founded the Red Balloon Collective in 1969 – a radical-thinking and creatively-acting group that put their bodies and art on the line against the U.S. war machine and in defense of social and environmental justice.

Mitchel ran for Mayor of NYC as one of five Green Party candidates. That primary election fell on September 11, 2001, when life as we know it was changed forever. He was editor of the national newspaper, “Green Politix,” for one faction of the national Green Party (before being purged), as well as the NY State Green Party newspaper; chaired the non-commercial, listener-sponsored WBAI radio (99.5 FM) Local Board, and hosted a weekly show, “Steal This Radio,” for different internet-based station. His writings include: The Social Construction of Neurosis, and other pamphlets; What is Direct Action? a book that draws on personal experiences as well as lessons from Occupy Wall Street; two books of poetry – One-Eyed Cat Takes Flight and The Permanent Carnival – and scores of pamphlets; which he sells on the streets and subways of his beloved Brooklyn. His forthcoming book of poetry and short stories is called, The Rubber Stamp Man, and will be available in 2019.

Robin T. Falk-Esser, Ph.D., earned her Ph.D. in Physiology and Biophysics (cardiac electrophysiology, neurphysiology, and pharmacology) at SUNY Stony Brook Health Sciences Center; published papers in Science and Nature, and co-authored scientific papers published in The Journal of Physiology, The Journal of General Physiology, and The Biophysical Journal. She was a New York City high school science teacher for 30 years, teaching Advanced Placement Environmental Science, AP Bio, and Chemistry, and was a recipient of the Siemens AP Science award for excellence in teaching (subject of NY Times articles and Tom Brokaw NBC Nightly National News interview on exemplary teaching). She is a life-long political activist; working as a teenager in the 1965 anti-apartheid mobilization, 1968 Poor People’s Campaign with Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., against the Vietnam War and in the draft resistance movement, and with the Red Balloon Collective at SUNY Stony Brook.

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The Racial Wealth Divide Is Vast, But It Doesn’t Have To Be

By Margaret Flowers and Kevin Zeese, Clearing the FOG. -

In a new report, “Dreams Deferred: How Enriching the 1% Widens the Racial Wealth Divide,” researchers at the Institute for Policy Studies outline how the racial wealth gap has widened over the past thirty years and how this fits the long term pattern of systemic racism. We speak with one of the authors, Sabrina Terry, about the findings in the report and recommendations for closing the wealth divide. We report live from Caracas, Venezuela where the United States is continuing its aggressive efforts at regime change.

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Guest:

Sabrina Terry is the Senior Program Manager of Economic Initiatives at Unidos US.

Expertise:
Community and Economic Development: financial capability, economic inclusion, racial wealth, environmental justice, sustainable development.

Education:
M.S. City and Regional Planning, Pratt Institute, Brooklyn, NY; B.A Political Science, San Francisco State University, San Francisco, CA

Current Position:
Advance financial and economic inclusion of Latino immigrants through integrated financial capability and legal services programs

Previous Positions:
Manager of Community and Economic Development, NAACP Economic Department, NAACP; Economic Program, NAACP Economic Department, NAACP; Community Planner, UPROSE.

Selected Publications:

Afro-Latinos in 2017: A Demographic and Socio-Economic Snapshot; (February 2019).

Helping Immigrants in Chicago Reach Financial Freedom; (October 2015).  

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Demonizing Iran: An Inside Look Into What The US Is Trying To Hide

By Margaret Flowers and Kevin Zeese, Clearing the FOG. -

The United States has a long history of interfering in Iranian politics. Perhaps the most famous is the coup of the democratically-elected prime minister Mohammad Mossadegh in 1953 followed by the re-installation of the US-friendly brutal shah, Mohammad Reza Pahlavi. Since the revolution in 1979, which overthrew the shah and put in place a representative theocratic government, the US has sanctioned Iran and both supported and threatened military attacks. Now, in addition to increased sanctions, Iranians are banned from traveling to the US and US citizens have great difficulty getting visas to visit Iran. We spent nine days in Iran and bring you this interview with Dr. Foad Izadi, a professor who teaches American Studies at the University of Tehran, about the impacts of the sanctions, their state of democracy and how Iranian students view the US and Iran.

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Guest:

Dr. Foad Izadi is a professor at the Faculty of World Studies and the Faculty of Law and Political Sciences, University of Tehran. He obtained a bachelor’s degree in economics and a masters in mass communication studies from the University of Houston, and he is a PhD graduate of mass communications of the Louisiana State University. Izadi has written articles and books on political and international issues, including ” U.S. Public Diplomacy toward Iran: Structures, Actors, and Policy Communities” and “Terrorism and Peace: A Bibliography”.

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Mass Protests Again; Haiti And Revolutionary Struggle In Latin America

By Margaret Flowers and Kevin Zeese, Clearing the FOG. -

After years of corruption and neglect of the Haitian people, a popular revolt is demanding the current president’s resignation. The US-led attempted coup in Venezuela played a role in sparking the protests as the Haitian government sided with the US in voting to recognize Juan Guaido, the fake president over President Maduro, the democratically-elected president. Haiti and Venezuela share a history of interconnected revolution and mutual aid since 1804. We interview Kim Ives, an editor of Haiti Liberté, who has been covering Haiti for decades, about the protests and the bigger picture of imperialism. We also report live from Tehran, Iran where we are on a peace delegation.

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Subscribe to Clearing the FOG on Patreon and receive our bonus show, Thinking it Through, plus Clearing the FOG totes, water bottles and T shirts. Visit Patreon.com/ClearingtheFOG.

And visit the new Popular Resistance Podcast Network at www.PopularResistance.org/prpn/

Guest:

Kim Ives is a founder of the weekly newspaper Haiti Liberté, where he is a writer and an editor. The paper has offices in Port-au-Prince, Haiti and Brooklyn, NY. Previously, he wrote, edited, and photographed for Haïti Progrès for 23 years. Ives has also made several documentary films about Haiti including Bitter Cane (director: 1983), Ayisyen Leve Kanpe (director: 1982), The Coup Continues (director: 1995), Killing the Dream (assistant director: 1992) and Rezistans (assistant director: 1997). He is also a member of Crowing Rooster Arts, a film collective specializing in films on Haiti. He is also a founding member of the International Support Haiti Network (ISHN), formerly the Haiti Support Network (HSN), and has led numerous delegations to Haiti since 1986 to investigate human rights violations, union struggles, peasant land conflicts, and state-enterprise privatization campaigns. In early October 2012, the ISHN organized a march by New York’s Haitian community across the Brooklyn Bridge to show solidarity with the Occupy Wall Street demonstrators. Ives is a co-host of the bi-weekly radio program “Lanbi Call,” previously known as “Haiti: The Struggle Continues,” which airs on WBAI 99.5 FM in New York. He used to also host a weekly Haitian TV show, produced by Haiti Liberté, entitled “Kafou Verite,” which aired on a Haitian subscription TV network. Ives has contributed to several books on Haiti including “Dangerous Crossroads” published by NACLA (1994), “The Haiti Files” edited by James Ridgeway (1993), “Haiti: A Slave Revolution” published by the International Action Center (2004), and, most recently, “Tectonic Shifts: Haiti Since the Earthquake,” released in January 2012.
Ives has written for numerous other publications including The Guardian, The Nation, NACLA Report on the Americas, The Progressive, and Jacobin. Ives is a frequent guest on radio and television networks and shows, including Al Jazeera, Democracy Now!, RT TV, CCTV America, National Public Radio, and several
Pacifica Network programs. In the summer of 2011, Ives coordinated the editing of, as well as wrote and coauthored, over a dozen stories based on some 2,000 Haiti-related secret U.S. diplomatic cables provided exclusively to Haïti Liberté by the media organization WikiLeaks. The series generated international press attention. Ives is a frequent public speaker about Haiti at churches, community groups, schools and colleges across the U.S. and internationally. In 2010 and 2011, he spoke at the University of Edinburgh, University of London, University of Toronto, University of Vermont, and the New School for Social Research in New York, among others. In November 2011, he was invited to and attended a conference held in Sao Paulo, Brazil on the UN military occupation of Haiti. In February 2012, he did speaking tour on Haiti in Canada and Seattle.

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How Democrats Are Blocking Progressives And What To Do About It

By Margaret Flowers and Kevin Zeese, Clearing the FOG. -

Progressives have been trying in earnest to make the Democratic Party move to the left and adopt their agenda since Senator Bernie Sanders started running for president in 2015. Like the many who have tried before them, they have failed. We speak with Nick Brana, the former national political outreach director for the Sanders campaign and a co-founder of Our Revolution who was on the inside of that effort, about what happened when they tried, where the party is now and what he sees as a path forward to build political power on the left.

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And visit the new Popular Resistance Podcast Network at www.PopularResistance.org/prpn/

Guest:

Nick Brana is the Founder and National Director at Movement for a People’s Party, formerly Draft Bernie for a People’s Party, and the organizer of the Labor Community Campaign for an Independent Party. He was the National Political Outreach Coordinator on Bernie Sanders’ presidential campaign through the 2016 Democratic National Convention and went on to become a founding member of Our Revolution. He was previously the Deputy Director of Voter Protection on the Terry McAuliffe gubernatorial campaign in Virginia. He got his B.A. in sociology and environmental policy from the College of William & Mary. You can reach him at nick.a.brana@gmail.com.

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Finding Hope In The Midst Of Climate Disruption

By Margaret Flowers and Kevin Zeese, Clearing the FOG. -

The climate crisis is no longer an abstract concept, it is here and it is getting worse. Each new report finds the temperatures are getting hotter, the ice is melting faster and the seas are rising, not to mention the storms, fires and droughts. In his new book, “The End of Ice,” Dahr Jamail takes us on  tour to the places where the impacts of climate disruption are evident. And he takes us on a tour of his personal journey through grief to acceptance and even hope. Jamail shows us the reality of the climate crisis and offers advice for how to relate to it in a meaningful way.

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Above photo by Dhar Jamail.

Guest:

Dahr Jamail – In late 2003, weary of the overall failure of the US media to accurately report on the realities of the war in Iraq for the Iraqi people, Dahr Jamail went to the Middle East to report on the war himself, where he has spent more than one year in Iraq as one of only a few independent US journalists in the country. Dahr has also has reported from Syria, Lebanon, Turkey and Jordan. He has also reported extensively on veterans’ resistance against US foreign policy, and is now focussing on anthropogenic climate disruption and the environment.

Dahr’s stories have been published with Truthout, Inter Press Service, Tom Dispatch, The Sunday Herald in Scotland, The Guardian, Foreign Policy in Focus, Le Monde, Le Monde Diplomatique, The Huffington Post, The Nation, The Independent, and Al Jazeera, among others. Dahr’s writing has been translated into French, Polish, German, Dutch, Spanish, Japanese, Portuguese, Chinese, Arabic and Turkish. On radio as well as television, Dahr has reported for Democracy Now! and Al-Jazeera, and has appeared on the BBC, NPR, and numerous other stations around the globe.

Dahr’s reporting has earned him numerous awards, including the 2008 Martha Gellhorn Award for Journalism, The Lannan Foundation Writing Residency Fellowship, the James Aronson Award for Social Justice Journalism, the Joe A. Callaway Award for Civic Courage, and five Project Censored awards.

Celebrating the 10th anniversary of the Izzy Award, in 2018 the Park Center for Independent Media (PCIM) at Ithaca College awarded Dahr an Izzy for his “path-breaking and in-depth reporting in 2017” exposing “environmental hazards and militarism.” The Izzy Award, presented for outstanding achievement in independent media, is named in memory of I.F. “Izzy” Stone, the dissident journalist who launched I.F. Stone’s Weekly in 1953 and challenged McCarthyism, racism, war and government deceit.

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The Rise Of A Fake President In Venezuela

By Margaret Flowers and Kevin Zeese, Clearing the FOG. -

On January 23 2019, Juan Guaidó, the current president of the defunct Venezuelan National Assembly, pronounced himself the president of the country. The United States, Canada, the European Union and a few Latin American countries immediately recognized him, while Russia, China, Mexico and many other countries support the democratically-elected current president, Nicolas Maduro. How did this relatively unknown man who barely won his race for the assembly rise to the position of fake president? We discuss that and more with Dan Cohen of The Grayzone Project.

Listen here:

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Subscribe to Clearing the FOG on Patreon and receive our bonus show, Thinking it Through, plus Clearing the FOG totes, water bottles and T shirts. Visit Patreon.com/ClearingtheFOG.

And visit the new Popular Resistance Podcast Network at www.PopularResistance.org/prpn/

Guest:

Dan Cohen is a Washington DC-based journalist and RT America correspondent. Prior to joining the team, he was based in Israel/Palestine where he produced widely distributed video reports and print dispatches for outlets including Mondoweiss, Electronic Intifada, The Nation, Alternet, Middle East Eye, Grayzone Project, Al Jazeera English, and Vice News. Cohen is the cinematographer and editor of the documentary ‘Killing Gaza’, and made the mini-documentary ‘The Syria Deception: Al-Qaeda Goes to Hollywood’.

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The Yellow Vests As Part Of The Global Revolt Against Neoliberalism

By Margaret Flowers and Kevin Zeese, Clearing the FOG. -

The Yellow Vests (Gilets Jaunes) movement of workers in France just completed its eleventh act this past weekend. They are revolting against neoliberalism and austerity and rule by and for the wealthy. There are many similarities to the Yellow Vest movement and the Occupy movement. We speak with Lola Girerd, a post-doctoral student in Paris who is participating in and studying the Yellow Vests, about what the protests are like, what they are about and how the Macron government is responding to them. We also discuss recent news, including mass climate actions, strikes and the US-led coup in Venezuela.

 

Listen here:

Review us on iTunes! Click here … Then click on “View in iTunes … Then click “Ratings and Reviews.”

 

Subscribe to Clearing the FOG on Patreon and receive our bonus show, Thinking it Through, plus Clearing the FOG totes, water bottles and T shirts. Visit Patreon.com/ClearingtheFOG.

And visit the new Popular Resistance Podcast Network at www.PopularResistance.org/prpn/

Guest:

Lola Girerd is a post-doctoral student in social psychology at the Paris Descartes University. Her thesis is on neoliberalism as an ideological barrier to feminist collective action. She has been participating in and studying the Yellow Vest movement.

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Breakthrough For Mumia Abu-Jamal And All Victims Of The Injustice System

By Margaret Flowers and Kevin Zeese, Clearing the FOG. -

The case of Mumia Abu Jamal, who was framed with the murder of a police officer, has had some important breakthroughs in the last month including allowing him appeal rights and the finding of six previously undisclosed boxes of evidence in his case. This could result in the dismissal of his case and release from prison after 37 years. We talk with Rachel Wolkenstein, who has served as an attorney and advocate for Mumia since 1990. Wolkenstein explains the significance of his case in the context of racist police enforcement, mass incarceration, the myths of US justice and legal lynching and describes evidence showing Mumia was framed because of his political activism. She argues that Mumia will only get justice if a mass movement demands it.

Listen here:

Review us on iTunes! Click here … Then click on “View in iTunes … Then click “Ratings and Reviews.”

Subscribe to Clearing the FOG on Patreon and receive our bonus show, Thinking it Through, plus Clearing the FOG totes, water bottles and T shirts. Visit Patreon.com/ClearingtheFOG.

And visit the new Popular Resistance Podcast Network at www.PopularResistance.org/prpn/

Guest:

Rachel Wolkenstein is a life-long political activist and an attorney for over 40 years defending civil liberties and civil rights, focused on the exercise of First Amendment rights, challenging the injustices of the American judicial system in criminal prosecutions and opposing the racist death penalty. From 1976-2010 she was staff counsel for the Partisan Defense Committee, a legal and social defense organization based on principles of non-sectarianism and class-struggle defense. 

Wolkenstein assisted in building a world-wide campaign for former death row political prisoner Mumia Abu-Jamal and was co-counsel during his post-conviction appeal proceedings from 1995-1999, responsible for much of the new evidence of his innocence and the state misconduct used to convict him and sentence him to death. Since then Wolkenstein has remained a legal and public advocate for freedom for Mumia Abu-Jamal. Wolkenstein was the legal consultant for the 2013 short film Manufacturing Guilt by producer Stephen Vittoria, Street Legal Cinema.  In defense of the First Amendment, Wolkenstein filed <em “mso-bidi-font-style:=”” normal”=””>amicus curiae briefs in the U.S. Supreme Court, including opposition to the government’s vast expansion of police powers in the “war against terror,” in Rumsfeld v. Padilla

For the past two years Wolkenstein has been an advocate with the Campaign to Free Lorenzo Johnson and since September 2014 has been representing co-defendant Corey Walker in his post-conviction appeals. Both men are serving life sentences in Pennsylvania for a murder they did not commit. Johnson and Walker were targets of the “war on drugs” and are among the over 100,000 innocent men and women who were convicted and remain imprisoned in the U.S.

 

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Canada Violently Violates First Nation Sovereignty Over Pipeline

By Margaret Flowers and Kevin Zeese, Clearing the FOG. -

The Wet’suwet’en Nation, which has never ceded its territory, has been working to stop a number of pipelines that Canada wants to build through their territory for the past ten years. This struggle came to a head last week when Canadian police violated their agreement with the Gidumt’en Clan by using violence to remove their blockade and arrest fourteen members. We speak with Jennifer Wickham, who is a member of the Gidumt’en Clan, about what is happening in this pivotal fight to protect the land, water and earth and what can be done to support the Wet’suwet’en People.

Listen here:

Review us on iTunes! Click here … Then click on “View in iTunes … Then click “Ratings and Reviews.”

Subscribe to Clearing the FOG on Patreon and receive our bonus show, Thinking it Through, plus Clearing the FOG totes, water bottles and T shirts. Visit Patreon.com/ClearingtheFOG.

And visit the new Popular Resistance Podcast Network at www.PopularResistance.org/prpn/

Guest:

Jennifer Wickham is a member of the Gidimt’en clan of the Wet’suwet’en First Nation who serves as a spokesperson for the Gidemt’en checkpoint.

 

Above photo: Red Power Media.

Audio from January 7 raid from Wet’suwet’en Access Point on Gidumt’en Territory Facebook Page.

Visit Unistoten.camp for more information and to donate.

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