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General News    H3'ed 1/23/11

MSNBC Countdown: It's Okay To Compare Bush, Rove to Nazis

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Last year on an episode of MSNBC's Countdown With Keith Olbermann, guest host Lawrence O'Donnell interviewed Lt. Col. Lawrence Wilkerson on the legality and ethics of torture in US Military history. The two Lawrences were discussing admissions in Karl Rove's book which indicate he had access to interrogation intel he should have been prohibited from in his advisory role and without operational "need to know".
Looking back, this segment (should have) made news as the only national cable network coverage of Colin Powell's decorated side man - who did have top security clearance - making an informed case that waterboarding has always specifically been illegal. Prodded by O'Donnell, Wilkerson called the neocons all chickenhawks and through the prism of US military history, morally bankrupt.

VIDEO: click here
This segment of Countdown was newsworthy in showing how MSNBC justifies use of the Nazi comparison, based on history and precedent, as recalled by Lt. Col. Wilkerson, according to the US at the time of the Nuremburg commission. He said Karl Rove should have been relieved of his post by Teddy Roosevelt, as was done to commanders who approved waterboarding in the Philippines.
Asked about the ethics of civilians like Rove not deferring to the most experienced commanders in effective warfare, Wilkerson called Cheney and all the others with deferments "cowards" (on top of comparing them to Nazis).
With this broadcast in March 2010, MSNBC sent a message to "corporate" - that calling out Bush-era crimes can pull top ratings. But failing to explore this revenue stream, they must explain to stockholders the reason foregoing this kind of news-breaking political controversy as MSNBC broke the "unwritten" cable network ban on Colin Powell's former chief of staff. (I see Gene Hackman and Morgan Freeman in the movie)
Money controls the Masses through the Media
We now hear it was former executive Jeff Zucker protecting Olbermann at MSNBC. Zucker left in the immediate wake of the approval of the Comcast/NBC merger, with Olberman the next domino to fall.
Olbermann is a bit pompous for some, but has a lot of support as the first to get on network TV, look into the camera and declare the Bush administration guilty of war crimes, torture, etc.
This was well explored yesterday, with over thirty thousand comments on one HuffPo article and petitions circulating. What we are NOT discussing is the very basis of network TV puppetry that "allowed" Olbermann into the mainstream "news free" breech and is now scooting him out with Ed, Rachel and Lawrence left behind.
Yes, all of these major network hosts sign an iron clad NON-DISCLOSURE AGREEMENT that prevents them from divulging anything that went on behind the scenes. If it's the standard industry contract, they have to keep mum for 50 years and can be arbitrarily over-ruled in picking guests and what they can and cannot cover.
This is why MSNBC's liberal hosts have stopped well short of exposing the stories we see scrubbed other network in the US. It points to a unitary hand puppeteering all mainstream media to whitewash, bury or downplay stories like the Downing Street memos, the 2004 election theft allegations, the vanishing of Cheney's DC Madam story and tamping down mentions of the Iran-Contra scandal, the October Surprise, arming Saddam with banned WMDs, installing and assassinating figureheads in Pakistan and Iran and all of the first hand accounts by whistleblowers like Lt. Wilkerson, Sibel Edmonds, John Perkins and Russell Tice.
These are not the conspiracy theories we see debated endlessly online, these are specific allegations of criminal wrongdoing with in-hand evidence, named crimes and defendants that have not been refuted, just suppressed, thanks to the state secrets privilege and compliant media execs.
In fighting for the truth MSNBC is permitted to broadcast, we must all remember, the network is only on the air but for the good graces of Comcast, Cox, Time Warner and the other giant cable companies that enjoy monopoly status in selling you access to TV. As we speak, they are look to install paywalls between you and your internet "free speech". 
So speak out often in support of Maddow, O'Donnell and Schultz being able to cover more reality-based news and respond quickly when you see MSNBC whitewashing a story and call out executive censorship when it is evident!
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(OpEdNews Contributing Editor since October 2006) Inner city schoolteacher from New York, mostly covering media manipulation. I put election/finance reform ahead of all issues but also advocate for fiscal conservatism, ethics in journalism and (more...)

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