Unauthorized Disclosure

Abby Martin and Mike Prysner, who produce the weekly independent show, "The Empire Files," join the show to talk about their recent reporting trip to Venezuela.

Both describe the nature of the opposition in Venezuela. They share details about the violence they witnessed and speak about opposition figures targeting them with a vicious campaign of intimidation and harassment (particularly online).

Throughout the episode, the left-wing Chavism's ability to withstand this opposition is highlighted. Martin and Prysner talk about the engagement of Venezuelans, especially lower class citizens, in participatory democracy. They address what they thought they would uncover and outline what they found to be so very different about the country's government.

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Direct download: S4E20.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:16am EST

Peter Van Buren is a former State Department employee, who blew the whistle on malfeasance and corruption related to reconstruction efforts in Iraq. He also is a writer and fiction book author. He joins the show to discuss his new book, "Hooper's War."

"Hooper's War" is a raw novel, caustic in tone and sober in its treatment of war and the forever rot that war creates within us.

During the interview, Van Buren highlights what influenced his story. We delve into the concept of moral injury. We discuss myths about wars that are told, particularly how those who served in World War II were the "Greatest Generation."

Later, Van Buren addresses endless war and what the book's main character, Hooper, might think about this current era, given that he is WWII veteran.

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Direct download: S4E19.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:00pm EST

On this week's discussion for the "Unauthorized Disclosure" podcast, hosts Rania Khalek and Kevin Gosztola discuss President Donald Trump's trip to Saudi Arabia and how ordinary Syrians view the armed opposition in Syria. They celebrate the release of Chelsea Manning.

The hosts also talk about the Comey memo scandal that has roiled the Trump administration and a news story published by Gosztola on a development involving Trevor FitzGibbon, the founder of a progressive public relations firm which abruptly shut down as sexual allegations were leveled against him. A U.S. Attorney's Office declined to pursue charges based on three criminal complaints, which were filed.

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Direct download: S4E18.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:00am EST

In a special episode for the podcast, former CIA officer and whistleblower John Kiriakou joins the show to talk about his new book, "Doing Time Like A Spy: How The CIA Taught Me To Survive And Thrive In Prison."

Kiriakou talks about writing prison letters, how he came up with the concept for his book, and he shares some of his stories from his incarceration. He highlights the case of Mark Lanzilotti, who was given an extremely draconian sentence for his nonviolent drug offense.

Later in the discussion, he talks about why he became the target of prosecution and what lesson he learned from his time incarcerated.


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Direct download: S4E17-JohnKiriakou.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 6:00pm EST

Hosts Rania Khalek and Kevin Gosztola welcome Azadeh Shahshahani, who is a legal and advocacy director for Project South. She joins the show to talk about a report her organization worked on called "Imprisoned Justice: Inside Two Georgia Immigrant Detention Centers."

Shahshahani addresses how asylum seekers and immigrants are denied due process and in some cases even tricked into signing papers for deportation. At Stewart Detention Center and Irwin County Detention Center, solitary confinement is used as punishment against individuals who resist the conditions of their confinement.

She talks about the water in these facilities, the rotten food served to prisoners, and the labor they are expected to perform often for very little pay or no money at all. And Shahshahani describes the programs the government operates with local police forces that load up private facilities like Stewart with bodies for companies to make profits.

Later in the show, Khalek and Gosztola discuss a reaction to Max Blumenthal's interview last week, Chelsea Manning's upcoming release, and the firing of FBI director James Comey.

If you would like to support the show and help keep us going strong, please become a subscriber on our Patreon page.



Direct download: S4E16.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:00am EST

Hosts Rania Khalek and Kevin Gosztola welcome Max Blumenthal, journalist, senior editor of AlterNet's Grayzone Project, and author of The 51 Day War: Ruin and Resistance in Gaza.

Blumenthal addresses how the Syrian conflict has created fractures among the left in the United States and its impact on the boycott, divestment, and sanctions (BDS) campaign against the Israeli occupation of Palestine.

He talks about the International Socialist Organization and "Democracy Now!", including a recent appearance by journalist Anand Gopal on the show, and their politics on the conflict.

Later in the show, Blumenthal discusses how the far right in Europe capitalizes off the refugee crisis and the frenzy over Russia among Democrats.

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Direct download: S4E15.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:00am EST

Hosts Rania Khalek and Kevin Gosztola discuss UC Berkeley and Ann Coulter, immigrant prosecutions, President Donald Trump's busy day on April 26, and one of the most recent ominous reports about the Arctic ice melting.

With Rania in the Middle East for the next months, she is a bit detached from U.S. current events. She asked Kevin to give her an update on some of what she missed.

No guest this week.

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Direct download: S4E14.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:43pm EST

Host Kevin Gosztola interviews the filmmakers involved in the production of "Awake: A Dream From Standing Rock," which premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival on April 22.

Josh Fox, Oscar-nominated director of "Gasland" and "How to Let Go of the World and Love All The Things Climate Can’t Change," produced Part 1 of the film.

Part 2 was created by James Spione, who was nominated for an Oscar for his work on the short film, "Incident In New Baghdad." He is also known for directing "Silenced," a documentary profiling whistleblowers.

Myron Dewey, founder of Digital Smoke Signals, is Newe-Numah/ Paiute-Shoshone from the Walker River Paiute Tribe, Agui Diccutta Band (Trout Eaters) and Temoke Shoshone. Through Part 3, he captures much of the indigenous perspective of what unfolded at Standing Rock in the struggle against the Dakota Access pipeline.

Dewey also is a media maker known for live streaming and flying a drone to capture what was unfolding on the ground. What appears in the film from this footage is stunning, whether what we see happening at Standing Rock is beautiful or tragic.

The film is available at AwakeTheFilm.org for streaming.

If you would like to support the show and help keep us going strong, please become a subscriber on our Patreon page.







Direct download: S4E13.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:00am EST

Hosts Rania Khalek and Kevin Gosztola are joined by Michael Mann, who is a distinguished professor of atmospheric science at Penn State University. He also directs the Penn State University Earth Science Center. And he's the co-author of the book, "The Madhouse Effect: How Climate Change Denial Is Destroying The Planet, Ruining Our Politics, and Driving Us Crazy."

Mann recounts his experience testifying before the House Committee on Science, Space, and Technology, which is chaired by Republican Representative Lamar Smith, a massive climate change denier. He addresses the chilly atmosphere for scientists currently in Washington, DC, and talks about the dire situation the world finds itself on as President Donald Trump rolls back initiatives intended to combat climate change.

Later in the show, Mann talks about why he wrote a satirical book about climate change. He also highlights the Science March planned for April 22, when scientists will mobilize against the Trump administration for its agenda of climate change denial and attacks on science.

If you would like to support the show and help keep us going strong, please become a subscriber on our Patreon page.

Direct download: S4E12.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EST

Hosts Rania Khalek and Kevin Gosztola spend the full hour discussing President Donald Trump's attack on a Syrian airbase. In the beginning, the reaction of support from media personalities and Democrats and neoconservatives is highlighted.

Further into the show, the hosts break down who the media has referred to as sources for information on what happened in the alleged chemical attack that led Trump to escalate U.S. military action. The hosts also discuss the left's response to the strike and what the attack may mean for the Syrian conflict.

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Direct download: S4E11.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:01am EST