Democracy Now! 2019-07-19 Friday


From from New York this is democracy now as president trump tries to distance himself from the racist chance of send her back about Congress member Ilhan Omar that he paused for thirteen seconds to let ring out at his campaign rally this week we'll speak with Professor Abor Mex- candy a descendant into slaves who asks am I in American then is the British government says it's identified the person who leaked cables forcing out the British Ambassador for calling trump inept we look at the real life political thriller of a British British intelligence specialists who risked everything to blow the whistle on U._S.. Dirty tricks at the United Nations in the lead up to the Iraq invasion of two thousand three to keep him as the Americans want us to help them get a U._N.. Resolution fool you work for the British government. This propose world historically on I worked British intelligence government can nigh to the British people. Catherine gun worked for British intelligence when she opened a top secret N._S._A.. Memo that reveal the U._S. was spying lying on U._N.. Security Council members in order to pressure them into supporting the Iraq invasion. She leaked the memo to the press which began a chain of events that opened the door to putting the entire Iraq invasion on trial Katherine Dunn Joins US Live and Studio to tell her story along with the reporters from the observer who she turned to with her leak. A new dramatic film is out. It's called offical secrets all that and more coming up welcome to democracy now democracy now dot Org the Warren Peace Report. I'm Amy Goodman in Washington D._C.. Capitol Police arrested Seventy Catholic nuns and clergy Thursday as they held a nonviolent sit in protest inside the Russell Senate office building against the trump administration's inhumane treatment of immigrants and asylum seekers more than a dozen protesters stood in a circle holding the photographs graphs of migrant children who've died and U._S.. Custody reciting their names. The latest protests came as immigrant communities across the country of prepared for reported ice raids that were scheduled to begin last weekend but have largely not materialized meanwhile a group of Indian asylum seekers in El Paso Texas have launched a hunger strike from inside an ice immigration jail demanding. They be released while they appeal their deportation orders one of the mental the Texas monthly if go back to India I'll be tortured and killed can die here. It's the second time this year that Indian men have led hunger strikes at the El Paso Processing Center back on Capitol Hill House Democrats grilled President Trump's acting homeland security secretary Thursday over migrant family separations the deaths of children taken into custody and reports of squalid overcrowded and dangerous conditions and U._S.. Immigration Jails this House Oversight Committee Chair Elijah Cummings questioning the acting V._H._S. chief Kevin McLennan doing a great job right what you're saying. We're doing our level best in a very what does that mean. What does that mean when a child is sitting a nail and feces can't take us our aw come on man what's that about none of us would have children in that position they are human beings also at Thursday's house oversight hearing in Congress member Alexandra Castro Cortez Confronted Kevin mcelwain over hateful messages shared by thousands of current and former border patrol agents on a private facebook group the groups online discussions exposed by PROPUBLICA earlier? This month are full all of homophobic anti immigrant in the Sajjan content about migrants and asylum seekers as well as racist attacks on Texas Congress member Veronica SCO bar and on Cossio Cortez who's depicted in a photo shopped image being sexually assaulted by president trump trump. This is Congress member. A CASIO CORTES QUESTIONING mcelwain. Did you see the posts mocking migrant children's deaths or did you see the post planning physical harm to myself in Congresswoman Escobar. Yes and I directed investigation within minutes of reading the article. Did you see the images of officers circulating photo shopped images of my violent rape. Yes I did are those officers on the job today and responsible for the safety of migrant women and children so there's an aggressive investigation on this issue preceding you've heard the chief of the border patrol the most senior female official and law enforcement across the the entire country say opposed to not meet our standards of conduct and they will be followed up aggressively president trump sought to distance himself Thursday from racist chants made by supporters at a campaign rally in North Carolina Wednesday evening. Speaking from the Oval Office is trump insisted that he quote felt a little bit badly about the chorus of send her back directed at Minnesota Congresswoman Ilhan Omar a naturalized US citizen who was born in Somalia and came to the United States as a political refugee. She has been a U._S.. Citizen longer than the first lady Melania trump president trump made the claim. Even though video of Wednesday evenings incident shows he did nothing to intervene as his supporters chanted send her back for thirteen seconds has a history of launching vicious anti-semitic screens President President trump waited a full thirteen seconds before continuing his verbal attack on Congress member Omar this came just three days after he attacked Omar and three other progressive democratic congresswoman of color on twitter writing why didn't go back and help fix totally broken and crime infested places from which they came speaking from Capitol Hill Thursday Congress member Omar accused trump of quote spilling his fascist ideology on stage Omar later flew home to her district restricted Minnesota where she was greeted at the Minneapolis airport by scores of supporters chanting welcome Home Ilhan Residence Nightmare while you're watching in his nightmare is seeing a Somali immigrant refugee. We are in the ring we are in the People's House and we are going to continue to keep fighting until the America. We know we all deserve. Thank you later that evening. Congress member Omar tweeted home sweet home on Thursday. The chair of the House Homeland Security Committee asked the Senate <unk> Sergeant at arms who also chairs the Capitol Police Board to enhance security for quote certain targeted members will have more on President Trump's latest racist remarks after headlines. The House of Representatives approved a bill Thursday that would raise the federal minimum minimum wage to fifteen dollars per hour twenty twenty-five while ending subminimum wages for tipped workers in the Senate Republican majority leader Mitch McConnell has said he will not allow a vote on the minimum wage. Meanwhile domestic workers and their supporters are rallying behind a bill that would grant them the right to overtime pay meal breaks and collective bargaining under federal labor law domestic workers are excluded from any of the protections most workers receive the domestic worker's bill of Rights Act with change that the bill is co sponsored by Washington Congressman Barr Pramilla Elegiac Paul and California Senator Twenty Twenty presidential hopeful Kamala Harris. This is Jen Poo director of the National Domestic Workers Alliance need for child care and elder care is exploding especially as the baby boom generation ages ages and people live longer. These are jobs that are not going to be outsourced. They won't be automated. These are going to be a large part of the jobs of the future and now thanks to all all of you. We are going to make these jobs good jobs. Domestic workers are among the lowest paid workers in the United States and suffer high rates of wage theft and sexual harassment on the job president trump said Thursday. He'll nominate Eugene Scalia as this next secretary of Labor. <unk> is the son of the late far-right Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia he previously served as the Labor Department's top lawyer under President George W. Bush as a partner at the law firm Gibson Dunne and Crutcher Scalia has a long history of opposing labor unions on behalf of corporate clients including Walmart much of scalise legal work has been aimed at stopping the dodd frank financial regulations enacted after the two thousand eight financial collapse last week. Alex Acosta resigned as Labor secretary amidst. The uproar over an extremely lenient plea deal he granted to the wealthy Serial Child Sex Abuser Jeffrey Epstein in two thousand eight when a Kosta was a U._S.. Attorney in Florida meanwhile federal judge in New York has denied bail to Jeffrey Epstein declaring him danger to the community and a significant flight risk U S District Judge Richard Berman pointed to a raid by investigators Epstein's New York Mansion earlier this month that found piles of cash stashes of diamonds is an expired passport with epsteins photo next to someone else's name listed under a Saudi Arabian address. Iran is denying president trump's claim that the U._S. military shot down in Iranian drone in the Strait of Hormuz competing claims came as the trump administration demanded Iran immediately release an oil tanker seized in the Gulf by Iran's Revolutionary Guard Iranian state media said the foreign ship was carrying a million leaders of oil being illegally smuggled out of of Iran and Afghanistan at least twelve people were killed almost ninety wounded Thursday as a pair of car bombs exploded at the gates of police headquarters in the southern city of Kandahar. The Taliban claimed responsibility for the attack hours later for at least eight people were killed thirty three others wounded when an explosion tore through the entrance to a university in the capital Kabul. This comes this U._S.. Officials in the Taliban continue peace talks and cutter and did ending the longest war in U._S.. History now in its seventeenth year in Kyoto Japan thirty three people were killed Thursday after a man burst into an animation studio douse the three story building with a flammable liquid and set it on fire. Police arrested a forty one year old man after the arson attack on the Kyoto animation company witnesses reportedly heard the suspect shout they stole my ideas and they copied my novel has police arrested him. If convicted the men could face the death penalty back in the United States the National Weather Service this has declared an excessive heat warning for vast swaths of the Midwest and east coast with warnings that high humidity and triple digit temperatures could combine to bring heat related illnesses and deaths in Washington D._C.. The heat index could reach one hundred fifteen in degrees Fahrenheit this weekend when some two hundred ninety million Americans are likely to experience temperatures above ninety degrees this comes as the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration reported that worldwide surface temperatures last month with the highest ever record for the month of June a finding consistent with global heating caused by human activity the Environmental Protection Agency announced Thursday it will not ban the widely used pesticide cler para fuss. Even though the agency's own research shows it can cause brain damage in children. The Obama Administration said it would ban the use of the toxic chemical in two thousand fifteen but the rule never took effect and was suspended in two thousand seventeen by then e._p._a.. Head Ed Scott Pruitt this comes the trump administration is preparing to roll back government regulations on nuclear power plants with staffers at the Nuclear Regulatory Commission recommending allowing the nuclear industry to carry out more self inspections while slashing the size and scope radiation protection and emergency preparedness inspections nuclear plants and those are some of the headlines this is democracy now democracy now dot Org the Warren Peach report. I may need Goodman on Thursday state. President trump attempted to distance himself from the racist chant centre-back about Minnesota Congresswoman Ilhan Moammar ran out through his campaign rally Wednesday night in Greenville North Carolina in fact he did nothing into intervene as chant rang out pausing a full thirteen seconds in response to his own verbal attack on the congresswoman Omar blamed the United States for for the crisis in Venezuela we think of that one and she looks down with contempt or the hardworking American saying that ignorance is pervasive in many parts of this country and obviously and importantly Omar has a history of launching vicious anti-semitic screens trump paused for thirteen seconds for send her back to wring out through the <hes> rally trump's remarks came one day after the House of Representatives voted to condemn his racist tweet telling four Progressive Congress women of Color Freshman Representatives Alexandra Cossio Cortes Diana Presley Rashida Ilhan Omar to go back to the crime infested places from which they came three of the congresswoman were born in the United States Omar's and naturalized U._S.. Citizen who was born in Somalia Malia. She has been a citizen longer than first lady. Melania trump despite outrage about trump's tweets the president double down on his racists attacks saying the congresswoman were hate-filled extremists who are constantly like trying to tear our country down speaking to reporters in the Oval Office Thursday trump attempted to distance himself from his supporters chance your supporters Leslie Chiming Chintzy sent back stop after this well number one I think I did I started speaking very quickly and it really was a loud I disagree with it by the way but it was quite a chant and I felt a little bit badly about it but I will say this <hes> I did and I started speaking very quickly but it started up rather rather fast as you probably know telling her supporters now I would say that I was not happy with it. I disagree winded. I felt a little bit badly about it. Trump said though again pausing thirteen seconds to allow the chance to ring out Minnesota Congressman Bar Ilan Omar responded to the president's actions while speaking to reporters Thursday. I want wants to make sure that every single person who is in this country who's aspiring to become part of the American fabric understands that nothing this president says should be taken apart. We are Americans as much as every one else. This is our country and we are where we belong three nights people on my election night in the state of Minnesota we don't aww come refugees to represent us in Washington and as much as he's spewing his fascist ideology on stage telling you a citizens to go back because they don't agree with his detrimental for mental policies for our country. We tell people that here in the United States dissent is patriotic here in the United States. This agreement is welcome. Debate is welcomed and especially in the People's House. All of our voices are uplifted heard on Thursday night Congress member Omar arrived back in the twin cities in Minnesota to a crowd of supporters at the airport her constituents headey new chant to greet her. Welcome Home Congress member Omar re tweeted this video Thursday night writing going home sweet home for more we go to Washington DC where we're joined by Abram Kennedy professor of history and International Relations and founding director of the anti-racist Research and Policy Center at American University. He's the National Book Award Winning Author of stamped from in the beginning the definitive history of racist ideas in America his forthcoming book out in August how to be an anti-racist in his latest piece in the Atlantic headlined AAH My an American Professor Kendy writes President Trump's tirade against four minority congresswoman prompts the question. Whom does he considered to be American Professor Sandy? Welcome back to democracy now respond to all. That's happened this week. The House didn't censure President Trump front but it did criticize him for his attack on the four congresswoman telling them to go back to their crime infested <hes> to go back to their crime-infested countries and of course they're all a U._S.. Citizens Yeah you know I think Marta response to this week is I think we have to continuously recognize that. There's a certain segment of people in this country tree who imagined the home of America is white people and that when when people of color come into that home and criticize that home <hes> they say how dare you come into my home and criticize my home you might as well go back to your home home but what if it's their home to and what if they have the right to criticize it to and what if they're trying to make that home better and I think this sort of week has showed us that power sort of imagining who is American. A and what is America and of course that's that's a debate as you know amy. We've been having for a very long time in this country. Title of your piece is am I an American <hes> explain slane why you think first and foremost this idea of go back to your country or in my case go back to Africa is something that that people of Color and black people have been hearing really from the beginning of this country and it's always caused some some of us to question are we in American at the same time particularly in our era is rare that a white person. Here's this idea here's this sort of shout to go back to your country because it's assumed <hes> that that they are an American and so I I just wanted to really speak through and talk through and really really think deeply about the literal impact that what trump said is having on people in connect that to the history of people being told to go back to their countries in your piece and I in American Eric and you right. I'm tolerated until I'm not I can dine on American soil until I demand a role in remaking the menu. That's killing me like those four progressive congresswoman of Color House Speaker Nancy Pelosi is told representatives Ilhan Omar of Minnesota. IANNA Presley of Massachusetts Rasheed had to leave of Michigan and Alexandra Cossio Cortes of New York to get in line to be a Democrat in the way I'm told by moderates away from Capitol Hill to get in line to be an American a here the moderate message of compliance of assimilation of being happy just dining and I hear the message from the man with the blood red hat defending the moderate and giving me an ultimatum. Can You unpack that for US professor candy sure so I wanted to really talk through and discuss the distinction between someone like trump who more or less says as I write in the piece that if you do not act like a slave then you're essentially not an American Eric and you need to go back to where you come from from the moderate or even to a certain extent the liberal who says you are an American and this is the way you're supposed to act as an American. You're not supposed to speak Spanish. You're not supposed to dress us that way. You're not supposed to look that way. You're supposed to do this in order to to essentially <hes> function in politics and so one is essentially the the one is telling us to essentially be be slaves. Don't ever critique or leave while the other is essentially trying to assimilate us into this singular sense of what an American is can you comment on the fear that these congresswomen now feel because they've been so targeted Democratic officials are afraid for example for the safety of Congress member Omar calling authorities to evaluate her security eh as well as the others. I think these four congressmen obviously are very well versed in American history and even of course the racial terror and violence that still persist and they know that the people who have been most likely to be affected by this violence whether you're talking about the lynching error reading whether you're talking about the era of police violence today are people who resist assist are people who resist <hes> American policies are the people who resist <hes> police officers other people who resist racism and so as to as for the most sort of visible resistors sisters of American racism and sexism imperialism it makes complete sense that they would fear violence happening one day to them. I want to ask you about how the media has been covering trump's racists attacks and also the broader conversation sation about racism. That's emerge. People were particularly enraged at C._N._N.. Had Richard Spencer on the avowed white supremacist to talk about trump's comments in a news conference earlier this week Congressman for Omar said this is the agenda of white nationalist whether it's happening in chat rooms or what's happening on National TV Professor Candy. How can the media the anti-racist instead of complicit? I think the media should use words you have words like racist which is a descriptive the term which describes people who are expressing racist ideas that certain racial groups are better or worse than others and people who are supporting racist policies that that yield racial equity and then you have terms is like anti-racist which are people who express notions of anti-racist ideas of of racial equality and support policies that yield racial equity and so when when when reporters and journalists list see people who are expressing racist ideas they should describe that person as racist when they see adhere people expressing anti-racist ideas they should describe people who are expressing who are being anti-racist. It is critical article for the media to use words to use descriptive terms in the way they use it in other in other ways. I mean they're going to talk about this week and is being very hot as they should. I also wanted to ask you about White House. Counselor Kellyanne Liane Conway defending trump's racist tweets this week when a reporter asked her about it she responded by asking him his ethnicity. If the president was not telling these these four congresswoman to return to their you're supposed countries of origin to which countries was he referring. What's your ethnicity? Why is that relevant to this question? My ancestors are from Ireland Ireland Italy who is not relevant to the question. I'm asking it is about he said originally so that's Kellyanne Conway asking Andrew Feinberg the White House reporter his own ethnicity now even candy the you had an interesting you raise an interesting point a sort of flipping this around to the luxury of knowing where your where your family did come from something. Many people enslaved Americans did did not know as they were forcibly taken from Africa and brought to this country. I think that's what makes it particularly painful for descendants of enslaved Africans because I think many of us of course no that that our ancestors are from Africa but we cannot necessarily pinpoint exactly where when when we think of Africa we think of course mother Africa many of US Imagine Africa as to a certain extent you know a a a a place of origin but at the same time we can't pinpoint where so when you say go back to our country <hes> I it's hard for us to not respond well what country <hes> even if we were to go back to Africa. Where would we go and I think that's what that's what becomes that's what it just sort of reminds us of the slave trade of the slave trade that millions of people were not only killed but separated from their ancestors against their will and now they're saying to us against against their will against our will to go back to our countries? I'm getting the end with Eric Swallow. He just pulled out as a presidential contender <hes> the Congress member from California but he went to the the House floor on Tuesday. Just ahead of the House vote to condemn trump's attacks on the four democratic congresswoman color he listed a number of trump's pass racist comments and as he did so several Republicans interrupted him. We have an opportunity today to condemn or condone. Birtherism is racist saying a Mexican judge can't be fair because of his his heritage is racist saying immigrants from Mexico are rapists is racist saying there were good people on both sides and Charlottesville is racist calling African countries whole all countries is racist and telling four members of this body to go home is racist and then you think it's not racist point of order. Do you think it's not a gentleman was suspended. Spanish gentlemen was stays right. Mr Collins Gentleman Mr Collins because you can say that the gentleman from California is out of order the gentleman from gentleman gentlemen from California Xiao Suspend for what purpose does the gentleman from Georgia born aboard at the gentleman's words are on parliamentary and our Chris. They'd be taken down order very interestingly Republicans interrupted him by citing an obscure house rule a line contained in congressional rules that states references to racial. Racial or other discrimination on the part of the president or not in order the original rule book banning the use of the word racist was written by Thomas Jefferson himself a slave owner but any irony in that was apparently lost on the Republicans pins and the resolution passed. You end your piece. Am I an American by writing Professor Candy. Maybe I should have been asking who controls America instead of am I an American your final thoughts. I wrote that because whoever controls in America whoever controls America is really the one who's going to determine who is an American and I should also add that when we say someone is is being racist. We are not making a personal attack as some of those House Republicans made the case. Were describing them so this isn't about attacking anyone. This is describing what they're saying. This is describing what they're doing this. This is not about what's in somebody's heart what's in somebody's bones. What's in someone's organs? This is about what's in their words and their actions and that's how we determine who is being racist or Anti Racist Ever Mex- Candy Founding Director of the anti-racist Research Research Policy Center at American University his forthcoming book how to be an anti racist and we'll link to his piece in the Atlantic headlined Am I an American Abram candy will be back on democracy now in just a few weeks when his book comes out this is democracy. Now I mean we could then when we come back. A whistle blower joins us who has lessons for us an act. She engaged in more than fifteen years ago. Stay with US been golden glorious me this be not let awesome these would've been heard in one night the outdoor someone and so for me this being manny singing bean voting on the Sinoe by Lila downs here in our democracy now studio to hear her performance and the interview go to democracy now dot org. I'm Amy Goodman as the British government says it's identified the person who leaked cables that forced out the British ambassador to the United States for calling president trump inept we look at the real life political thriller of a British intelligence specialist who risked everything to blow the whistle on U._S.. Dirty strict on U._S. dirty he tricks at the United Nations in the lead up to the Iraq invasion in two thousand three Catherine Gun was working for Britain's government communications headquarters known as G H Q the Intelligence Agency similar to the National Security Agency here when when she opened a top secret N._S._A.. Memorandum the highly confidential memo revealed the United States was collaborating with Britain and collecting sensitive information on United Nations Security Council members in order to pressure them into supporting the Iraq invasion guided by her conscience Catherine Gun defied her government and leak the memo to the press setting off a chain of events that jeopardized her freedom her safety but also opened the door to putting the entire Iraq invasion on trial acclaimed Pentagon papers whistleblower Daniel Ellsberg described Catherine guns action is the most important courageously I have ever seen. Dan Ellsberg said no one else including myself as ever done what Katherine Gotten to tell secret truths of personal risk before an imminent war in time possibly to avert well now catherine gun stories being told in the new film offical secrets starring here nightly this is the trailer employed to translate it signals intelligence and I reported anything interest my clients. You're a spine and the Americans hoping to the U._N.. Resolution for you for the British government. There's starkly on I worked to participate. I do not gather intelligence and the government can lie to the British people intentions may be manipulated. Take his country to get your copy. You're asking you to breach of official secrets. Some cool that treason <music> someone has to be trade that government and their country might need our help you do not go public would be conceding that no one ever tell the people when the government is lying marriage to be interrogated husband had absolutely nothing to do with this. These are Muslim. I'm sorry they chose loyalty to country over loyalty to government. You'll manage yourself speaks highly as a gun charged with an offence the official secrets. Do you want to rescue. That's the trailer for the new movie offical official secrets based on the true life story of whistleblower Katharine Gun at the time her actions received very little attention from journalists in the United States unless you are watching democracy now in two thousand for democracy now interviewed Catherine Gun. I asked her why she decided to leak the memo. When I saw this email asking G. C. H. help to bug the six swing nations nations to get a vote for for war with Iraq? I was very angry at first and very saddened that had come to this and that despite all the talk from about Tony Blair Erin George Bush about how important it was to get the U._N.. <hes> onboard and to legitimize <hes> any kind of aggression <hes> that they actually going around it <hes> in such low. Oh handed manner so I decided that <hes> the risk to my career was minute compared to the upcoming war in Iraq and the best thing to do for me was to leak this information to to the press so that everybody else could have the information and hopefully could avert this disastrous course of events that have occurred so that was Katherine Gun back in two thousand four. It's fifteen years later for more on this incredible story and the real life thriller that is coming out on August Thirtieth <hes> in <hes> movie theaters around the country. Our guests Catherine Gun is paid. <hes> is played by Keira Knightley. We're joined by Katharine Gun herself. The whistle blower former employees of Britain's Global Surveillance Center G. C. H.. Q. Played by actress Keira Knightley. Yes we're joined also by Martin Bright who <hes> is the journalist who reported guns revelations in the Observer as well as <hes> he was the observer journalist who is working in Washington on this story as well with Martin <hes> at the time <hes> the paper their paper. The Observer was openly supporting the Iraq invasion leading up to it also with us the director of Official Secrets Gavin Hood. We welcome you all to democracy now and it's so relevant to be talking about this today as the British government is talking about cracking down on the leaker of the <hes> of the memos of the U._S.. <hes> the British Ambassador to the U._S. that forced him out. He was forced to resign <hes>. <hes> because it showed that he called president trump and napped and he said you know the singular reason that the trump administration pulled out of the Iran nuclear deal was because it was signed by President Obama and other issues but they not only are saying they are going to crack down hard on the leaker but they're also saying they will crackdown on the press any press reports this in Britain. We thought it was really interesting to talk to you at this time but Katherine. How old were you in two thousand three again? This is before the Iraq war. What January of two thousand three Iraq war was in March? Tell us the moment you're sitting at the equivalent of the N._S._A.. You worked for G. C. H.. Q. In Britain and you were what a Chinese translator Yeah Mandarin Chinese Chinese dude nothing to do with what was going on covering stuff in Iraq or working on that issue. Oh what did you see in your email <hes> while it was a memo from a chap called Frank Khoza <hes> who worked at the N._S._A. and <hes> and yeah it was just a request from the N._S._A.. To <hes> for juice H._Q.. To assist system in bugging the domestic and office communications of the six U._N.. Security Council delegates in bugging in spying on in eavesdropping wiretapping whatever yeah and who were these six countries in putting me on Gavin worked on the screenplay the director Angola Cameroon Bulgaria Chile Pakistan and Mexico and and <hes> these six countries with a non-permanent members on the U._N.. Security Council at the time the idea was they would figure out which way they were going to vote so that they could sway them. The idea was to gather information that they could use was to bribe them or you know threaten them into voting yes for the resolution so yes tremendous amount of pressure down on these countries because if Blair and and Bush had been able to get that U._N.. Resolution for an invasion the weapons of mass destruction issue would have been an honest pretty much irrelevant because there's two legal ways to go to war. It's either go to war based on a U._N.. Resolution we're all together. All you've got to prove genuine threat to your self defense argument so Katherine you re this memo. You're working on translating the head Duran but you see this memo that went out to everyone in your area. And what did you think I was just appalled. I mean my first reaction was was shock and anger <hes> and I thought it was explosive. Information you know I thought it was something that people need to know about because it was basically exposing what was going on behind the scenes and the fact doc that all the flowery words that they use in front of the cameras about you know doing everything diplomatically was a sham. Tony Blair was the Prime Minister of Britain at the time. So what did you do <hes> well I. I didn't do anything immediately but I wasn't home. It was a Friday when I saw the email and I went home and thought about it over the weekend and then on Monday morning I went back into my <hes> workplace and I just <hes> photo well I made a copy of it and I printed out and folded up into my <hes> handbag. Put for the end of the day to take it out of out of the office. You took it out. What did you do with it <hes> and then I mailed it to contact who then passed onto a journalist journalist who then passed onto Monta right which takes us to Mr Martin bright but we're going to go to a break and then we're going to come back to this discussion and guys you do not want to miss this story and what would then take place? We're talking about official secrets. Yes assists new Hollywood movie. That's coming out but it is the real life story of Catherine Gun. How old were you at the time twenty seven years old working for the equivalent for British intelligence and she sees this memo that says that the evidence for going to war would not be based on intelligence of whether there were W._m._d.? But on trying to get something on the U._n.. Security Council members personal or whatever to get them to vote for the invasion to back President George W Bush the system now back in thirty seconds uh-huh rebel girl <music> by Bikini Kill. This is democracy now. I'm Amy Goodman. We're looking at the real life political thriller of a British Intelligence Specials Catherine Gun who were everything to blow the whistle on U._S.. Dirty tricks at the United Nations in the lead up to the Iraq invasion in two thousand three yes in two two thousand and three gun was working for British intelligence. That's G. C.. H. Q. The intelligence agency similar to the N._S._A.. National Security Agency when she leaked memo revealing the United States was collaborating with Britain and collecting sensitive information to hold holdover U._N.. Security Council members to get them to support the Iraq war gun story being told and offical secrets. This is a clip. Your supervisor speaks highly of viewer integrity. She says this breach was a foolish. One was it to me if I leaked anything else. No do you intend to know. I've always been very proud to work itchy the H._Q.. Until now yes until now we employed to do. I can't be specific. General I translated related signals intelligence and I reported anything I thought might be of interest to my clients the Foreign Office Ministry of Defence so you work for the British government. No not really governments change. I I work for the British people. I got it intelligence so that the government can protect the British people. I do not gather intelligence so that the government can lie to the British people with respect Mrs Gun. YOU'RE A spy. Yes you gather information from people's phones and computers and you feed that to your clients eavesdrop on private conversation. Yes now oh you're upset at being asked to do that to members of the Security Council detective I don't object to being asked to connect information that could help prevent a terror attack which I object to is being. I got the intelligence to help fix a vote at the U._N.. And deceive the world into go into six hundred that was a clip from official secrets. The film is coming out August thirtieth in theaters around the country. That's Karen nightly playing Catherine Gun. Who's in our studio now? The whistle blower former British spy worked for British intelligence explaining why she leaked this memo which would get to the press which would get to the observer which brings us to our next two guests <hes> Martin Bright and as well as <hes> Volante Martin talk about how you got this memo you actually at that point had never met Catherine Gun. No it was a very unusual situation. We were handed a simple sheet of a four paper that was how to series of words. It's typed on it and whereas usually with a whistleblower. You'd worked very closely with them. Directly Catherine didn't come to me. She passed the memo to one of her contacts. That contact had connections with the antiwar war movement. Someone within the antiwar movement who is a former journalist took the memo initially to another newspaper and then finally it came to me and on the face of it. It looked like an extraordinary story. It's not every day you get top secret memo and I'll just a top secret in the memo from Q at a top secret memo from the N._S._A.. Sent to Jesus Chew. It looked like a very exciting story but the difficulty was that it was just woods on a piece of paper we had no idea where to come from and that's that's really where the story started etta myself on the observable verification so you. Go to your top editors and say I've got this piece of paper. In fact Catherine had ripped off the top is that right at the top of being ripped off of the memo and also all the header information. I usually have was not there so when I met Yvonne Ridley who is the former journalist who handed me the document it was immensely infuriating and I said what is this I mean what are you doing here. Yeah it's no use to me at all and she turned the piece of paper over and on the back someone had written them the header information so we at least three thousand scratch on the back that yes catherine wasn't me actually we we have to talk about this. Your argument to the editors you think this Israel but you do have to track it down and explain what the header said who you had to verify this with the header for information included the name Frank Oser who was the N._S._A.'s head of regional targets at the time and so we had at least that we had at least the name and it <hes> also the the memo is self contained language that was that was consistent with intelligence service language so we had experts look at that as well so you call Ed and you say can you track down the Sky Y'all so many other things so so initially we were quite nervous. I was quite nervous to a couple of colleagues about even taking it to the editor because you don't want to take a half baked story said so you're particularly the time of intense sir prewar preparation that the drums of war rolling at that that period but we were within the time he should run the fastest to the editor but only with a story that you know is true and so we knew that time was short and the time the observer newsroom was the observer south was split because some people supported the war some people didn't there are a group of journalists within the newsroom who trust each other had worked together gather supporting the war. That's the credit po-point hyper. The editorial line was supporting the war but obviously there were those within the paper he didn't and it was a very collaborative. It was a very collaborative place and I knew that I needed help on new ED was an extremely experienced journalist so I called him and asked him if he could do anything to help. Track down Franco's all the reality or otherwise if the guys at the N._S._A.. Say Your played by Race Font brilliantly in this movie offical secrets but so you have to track them Fred Khoza Frank Frank Costa. What do you do Berlinde busy? These actors are so clever. They need like he's more me than I am likewise other performances extraordinary in this film. I'm yeah I mean these were as Martin suggested divisive divided bitter difficult times of sound familiar to Sasha or the war I mean our obligation is not whether we support or against the war obligation is to the Truth and truth was having a hard time at the observer at that point <hes> this is the backstory this Catherine talking about but there is a back story in the film which plays its part which is might not be quick on this. I had found a source called no goodman namesake of yours who is the head of the Soviet desk at the C._I._A.. Catches Clarence wise man and he had told me of a two meetings a we know that Saddam Hussein has no weapons of mass destruction the C._I._A.. Knows everybody knows it too. There is a shadow intelligence operation going on through the Pentagon all your favorite names on this program Douglas Feith pool of its Richard Poe. You'll recall them. I hope not for their sake but some of them will then basically cooking it the cooking this up. It's not true I filed that story seven times to The Observer I could not get it in the paper. I didn't know why but I was going nuts and refi. receive fans plays the outraged insanity rather world and to my embarrassment for the haven does a good job and and so we're going crazy it later emerged that the newspaper was collaborating very very closely with Tony Blair and his sort of enforcers to keep this kind of thing out of the paper so where I had failed with my whistle blower Mr Goodman Martin with brave and extraordinary Catherine gun succeeded but this needed finding Khoza now. I asked around Mr Goodman I asked others. Can you help me find this because you had to get an extension number. They would just put you through to a man who doesn't exist assist in place that doesn't exist and you try that all the naive he tried to getting its Annapolis speaking and and they said we don't give out you find I came upon an extension of and that's when you get through. I tried to say I will. I put on American accents and goes the through WHO's talking to her. <hes> I can't I can't say just put me through and sure enough Franco's a good moment Mr Khoza Yahoos who's that I'm reading about the G. C. H.. Q. Memo that Shoe Senate Vic at least so you gotta prove Martin Bright you're able to move forward with the story and it is explosive. What was the headline tricks? The dirty tricks the U._N.. And talk about what happened and then I mean you were. The man of the hour you walk in. People are cheering you you've got C._N._N.. You've got <hes> B._B._C.. You've got everyone on the line. They want to interview Martin Bright Because you've got the story of this memo. You didn't know who Catherine Gotten was who had leaked it but you had the story of the memo that was going to get the goods on these U._N.. Security Council members and which would force them to vote for the invasion of Iraq. Everyone's booking you yes and then everyone Fox C._n._N.. And then they all cancel yes yes it was it was an extraordinary. It was every jealous dream to have these front page splash stories that get funded up around the world. It was particularly explosive in Chile which has been used to American television show in the six nations. We were getting calls from the world and it was three minutes. It was one of those huge Hugh Hugh stories and then one by one the American networks pulled out. We still don't know to this day why they did that. Somebody was to do with complications over and unfortunate spellcheck with this is absolutely astounding moment. You print the memo entirety yes and it's but it's the spelling of it is British spelling yes so we had a terrible moment where we'd we'd seen <hes> organizations full of the story up the drudge which reports famous right wing website at the story up <hes> and then they changed the headline from Condie Rice orders operation at the <hes> the cue to British newspaper prints fake fake memo right because F._A.. V. O. U. R. Instead of the details on that so that proves it's a fake memo they think but it's just because the copy editor was in Calcutta rather than conspiracy and it was a terrible moment when I had to look in my drawer but Katherine Gun for Your Home <hes> you see this headline splashed across the front page and your memo that you had leaked was right front and center. You promptly threw up well. No I was in the shop when I saw it so <hes> but I felt like straightaway. It was emblazoned across my forehead. It's me you know look at me. Target Right <hes> <hes> and I was petrified. I was trembling like a leaf and I pretty much ran home and my husband yes show is <hes> still in bed and just you know I just collapsed and talk about what I mean. You risked everything in fact your husband would they attempt to deport him well. It's just serendipitous fortuitous whatever it is but his is <hes> asylum case was coming to an end at the same time that my case began so as soon as I was you know well. We'll get to this. I I suppose I was really ready seconds. I was arrested and the whole process I think it was just a parallel process. That didn't win to sounding H._Q.. Leads investigation they question you but then you turn yourself in and tell the final results of what happened. When you go to court you face years in prison and what happened while they dropped the charges against me? This was how long after it was full <hes> nine to ten months out of the event and the U._S. went to war with Iraq. This is a remarkable story. We're going to do part two. We're going to post online at democracy now dot org to talk about these the courage Katherine Gun had in revealing this information and then.

Coming up next