Hearings are underway on the case of John Kiriakou, a former CIA official turned whistleblower. He first told the world about waterboarding in secret prisons, but scandals like that might never break again of lawmakers on Capitol Hill have their say. Congress is on a mission to silence journalists from ever publishing classified information and, in fact, want to make doing so a crime under the Espionage Act. Jesselyn Radack, National Security & Human Rights Director of the Government Accountability Project, joins RT’s Liz Wahl to explain what that could mean for the freedom of press in America (24 July 2012).
The Occupy movement has united hundreds of thousands across the world in protest against economic and social injustice. In this episode, key Occupy activists talk global finance, politics, and direct action. The former Deutsche Bank building inLondonplays host to this week’s discussion, which sees Julian discuss the origins, targets, and future of the Occupy movement with five high profile activists. The roots of the movement lie in the growing outrage many felt in the wake of the 2008 global financial crisis. However, according to Alexa O’Brien from OccupyNew Yorkand US Day of Rage, they are also responding to a “Global Political Crisis, because our institutions no longer function.” Aaron Peters from Occupy London agrees that political failure is a “global phenomenon”, with power shifting to unaccountable non-democratic institutions. However, the last word goes to David Graeber from Occupy New York, who jokes “there’s nothing that terrifies the American government so much as the threat of democracy breaking out in America” (29 May 2012).
In the fourth episode of The World Tomorrow Julian Assange speaks with two leading Arab revolutionaries in the middle of conflict, Alaa Abd El-Fattah from Egypt and Nabeel Rajab from Bahrain. Alaa Abd El-Fattah is a long time Egyptian blogger, programmer and political activist. His parents were human rights campaigners under Anwar Sadat; his sister Mona Seif became a Twitter star during the 2011 Egyptian revolution, and is a founder of the No Military Trials for Civilians group formed under the post-Mubarak military junta. El-Fattah was imprisoned for 45 days in 2006 for protesting under the Mubarak regime, and released after “Free Alaa” solidarity protests in Egypt and around the world. In 2011, from abroad, El-Fattah helped route around Mubarak’s internet blockade. Nabeel Rajab is a lifelong Bahraini activist and critic of the Al Khalifa regime. A member of a staunch pro-regime family, Rajab has agitated for reform in Bahrain since his return from university in 1988. Along with the Bahraini-Danish human rights defender Abdulhadi al-Khawaja, he helped establish the Bahrain Centre for Human Rights in 2002. Rajab is reasonably new to the limelight — becoming a face for the Bahrain uprising of February 14 2011, after the sit-in at Pearl Roundabout. Since then, he has been a public face for the revolution, waging a social media war on Twitter with PR companies working for the regime. After al-Khawaja was imprisoned, he led protests for his release. He has endured beatings, arrests and legal harrassment for engaging in pro-democracy demonstrations. On Saturday 5th of May, he was arrested atManama airport , and charged the next day with encouraging and engaging in “illegal protests.” Nabeel Rajab remains in detention at the time of broadcast (8 May 2012).