imc indymedia

Los Angeles Indymedia : Activist News

white themeblack themered themetheme help
About Us Contact Us Subscribe Calendar Publish RSS
Tell the NSA: StopWatching.US

Features
latest news
best of news
syndication
commentary


KILLRADIO

VozMob

CopWatch LA

ABCF LA

A-Infos Radio

Indymedia On Air

Dope-X-Resistance-LA List

LAAMN List





IMC Network: www.indymedia.org africa: ambazonia canarias estrecho / madiaq kenya nigeria south africa canada: hamilton london, ontario maritimes montreal ontario ottawa quebec thunder bay vancouver victoria windsor winnipeg east asia: burma jakarta japan korea manila qc europe: abruzzo alacant andorra antwerpen armenia athens austria barcelona belarus belgium belgrade bristol brussels bulgaria calabria croatia cyprus emilia-romagna estrecho / madiaq euskal herria galiza germany grenoble hungary ireland istanbul italy la plana liege liguria lille linksunten lombardia london madrid malta marseille nantes napoli netherlands nice northern england norway oost-vlaanderen paris/Île-de-france patras piemonte poland portugal roma romania russia saint-petersburg scotland sverige switzerland thessaloniki torun toscana toulouse ukraine united kingdom valencia latin america: argentina bolivia chiapas chile chile sur cmi brasil colombia ecuador mexico peru puerto rico qollasuyu rosario santiago tijuana uruguay valparaiso venezuela venezuela oceania: adelaide aotearoa brisbane burma darwin jakarta manila melbourne perth qc sydney south asia: india mumbai united states: arizona arkansas asheville atlanta austin baltimore big muddy binghamton boston buffalo charlottesville chicago cleveland colorado columbus dc hawaii houston hudson mohawk kansas city la madison maine miami michigan milwaukee minneapolis/st. paul new hampshire new jersey new mexico new orleans north carolina north texas nyc oklahoma philadelphia pittsburgh portland richmond rochester rogue valley saint louis san diego san francisco san francisco bay area santa barbara santa cruz, ca sarasota seattle tampa bay tennessee urbana-champaign vermont western mass worcester west asia: armenia beirut israel palestine process: fbi/legal updates mailing lists process & imc docs tech volunteer projects: print radio satellite tv video regions: oceania united states topics: biotech
printable version - js reader version - email this article - view hidden posts - tags and related articles
link:

Good News and Bad

by Stephen Lendman Saturday, Nov. 03, 2012 at 8:49 PM

police state

Good News and Bad

by Stephen Lendman

A personal note: As a writer and radio host, I'm often asked why I don't discuss good news. My answer is when I find some I will. Today I did, and here it is.

Two previous articles discussed suppressing free expression in Greece. Targeting dissent and media freedom continues.

Journalists revealing information government authorities want suppressed are suspended, fired, and/or arrested and prosecuted.

Costas Vaxevanis and Spiros Karatzaferis were targeted. Karatzaferis remains in custody on libel charges. He claimed to have information on how Greece manipulated its deficit to seek bailout help at the expense of ordinary people.

He said he'd present it on air October 31. He was arrested to prevent him from doing it. He added that he wasn't apprehended for having the information. Authorities used an old warrant against him.

It related to accusations he made against judges. He accused them of trying to form a para-state outside government. "I am being condemned for libel," he said. He added that he'll go to jail before paying a fine if assessed one. He may end up there.

Vaxevanis was arrested for publishing the "Lagarde List." It contained names of 2,059 wealthy Greeks with secret HSBC Swiss accounts.

Secreting wealth offshore in tax havens makes them suspect. Vaxevanis and former Greek finance minister George Papaconstantinou wanted them investigated for possible criminality.

Current Greek finance minister Evangelos Venizelos did nothing. Papaconstantinou said authorities didn't act because they're covering for elite tax cheats. Greece is notorious for high-level ones. Its longstanding system is "broken and corrupt," he added.

Vaxevanis was arrested, brought to Athens magistrate court for a hearing, released pending trial, then rushed through one on November 1.

Initially it was scheduled for later. Perhaps a national uproar got it moved up to dispense with it quickly. A packed court watched it.

All's far from well in Greece, but ended that way for Vaxevanis. Lawyers representing him convinced judges that accusations against him were politically motivated.

On November 1, the London Guardian headlined "Greek editor Kostas Vaxevanis acquitted over Swiss bank list."

Before testifying in his own defense, he said:

"My job is simply to tell the news and tell it straight. My job is to tell the truth." In Athens magistrate court, proceedings took 12 hours. A "three-member panel of judges (presided) stony-faced throughout" them.

Prosecutor Iraklis Pasalidis called no witnesses. Symbolically it confirmed baseless state accusations. Nonetheless, he argued that Vaxevanis should be convicted of violating state privacy laws and defamation without proof of guilt. Judges didn't buy it.

Vaxevanis was vindicated. He was acquitted and freed. Relieved, he said:

"Journalism for far too long has been a hostage to political forces that don’t allow it to work. This decision sets a precedent that allows my colleagues to do their jobs without political handcuffs."

"Journalism is printing what someone else does not want printed. Everything else is public relations. As such it was my duty to reveal this list."

"The political system has been hiding the truth for so long."

"It is quite clear the political system did everything not to publish this list. If you look at the names, or the offshore companies linked to certain individuals, you see that these are all friends of those in power. Phony lists had also begun to circulate. It was time for the truth."

"We live in a country where, on the one hand, tax evasion is rampant and, on the other, people are eating out of rubbish trucks because of salary cuts, because they can't make ends meet."

Attorney Nikos Kostantopouloulos represented Vaxevanis. "We have a schizophrenic situation," he said, "where, on the one hand, a journalist is being penalized for revealing a document in the interests of informing public opinion and, on the other, the parliament itself is now saying the handling of the list should be investigated."

"Right down to the way the prosecutor so hastily issued the charge sheet without even bothering to stamp it, it has been handled very badly. Furthermore, none of those on the list have even filed a complaint about privacy violation."

International Federation of Journalists president Jim Boumela flew from London to testify for Vaxevanis. He's a national hero. Exonerated, he's free. If convicted and imprisoned, he'd have risen to martyr status.

Transparency International co-founder, Frank Vogl, said Greece's government is tarnished.

"Internationally, the case will serve as a blunt reminder to Greece’s international official creditors that it is hopeless to accept the pledges of the Greek authorities that they will sharply curb their budget deficit so long as they fail to act meaningfully against corruption and tax evasion."

Now the bad news.

America's Justice Department bagged another innocent victim. It specializes in creating terror plots, not busting them. At issue is lawless FBI entrapment. It's happened so many times before. US prisons are filled with men and women who should be free.

Confining them to gulag incarceration constitutes police state injustice. Tyrannical regimes prioritize it. They never say they're sorry. They're too preoccupied bagging others on the false pretext of fighting terrorism.

America is the world's leading terror state. No one's safe anywhere domestically or abroad. Guilt by accusation is policy. Innocence is no defense. That's how police states operate.

In September 2011, Rezwan Ferdaus was indicted on six counts. They included alleged plans to attack the Pentagon and Capitol Hill, as well as provide aid to a foreign terrorist organization.

At the time, National Lawyers Guild president Heidi Boghosian said, "It deeply concerns us. It is another in a pattern of high-profile cases. Would this person have conceived or executed" anything without FBI involvement?

Council on American-Islamic Relations' Ibrahim Hooper said, "There is a big, big difference between a plot initiated by the FBI and a plot initiated by a suspect, and it seems this (likely was) initiated by the FBI."

On November 1, the FBI's Boston Division headlined "Man Sentenced in Boston for Plotting Attack on Pentagon and US Capitol and Attempting to Provide Detonation Devices to Terrorists," saying:

Rezwan Ferdaus was sentenced to "17 years in prison, to be followed by 10 years of supervised release."

On July 20, 2012, he was pressured to accept a plea bargain guilty plea despite having committed no crime or planning one. In return, four charges were dropped. None should have been made in the first place.

Prosecutorial pressure is unprincipled. Ferdaus perhaps was told either take 17 years or face life in prison without parole or perhaps the death penalty. Terrified victims, often poorly represented, choose the lesser of two bad options.

Ferdaus is 27 years old. If he survives, he'll be middle-aged when released. Hampered by a criminal record, his future prospects will be grim.

Charges against him are absurd. He was convicted of plotting to blow up the Pentagon "by means of an improvised explosive device (IED) using mobile phones."

The alleged plot sounded more like a bad film script. No self-respecting producer would touch it. Ferdaus will spend some of his best years in gulag confinement.

At issue is lawless entrapment. Paid informants are used. Witnesses are paid to lie. Secret evidence unavailable to defense attorneys is used. Muslims are America's target of choice.

Praying to the wrong God is hazardous. War on terror targeting snares unsuspecting victims. Media scoundrels convict them in the court of public opinion. Justice is denied every time.

On November 2, Reuters headlined "Massachusetts man sentenced to 17 years after FBI terrorism sting," saying:

Ferdaus was convicted for planning to use "remote-control(led) model airplanes" to blow up the Pentagon. Reading from a two-page statement, he said:

"I, the other, the uniquely dressed, the lone man in these hours, I speak of humanity. No dehumanization can serve as justification for inhumanity in other places."

He left unexplained what he meant. Judge Richard Stearns said, "Your statement convinced me that you have the character and capacity to search your own soul."

Non-Mainstream News headlined:

"FREE REZWAN FERDAUS. Day 400 of Solitary Confinement. Arrested on September 28, 2011, and Accused of a Terror Plot 'Orchestrated and Facilitated by the Government."

His mother, Ana Maria Ferdaus, told reporters, "My son is innocent. We are the best family that America will ever have….Investigate your government."

Public defender Miriam Conrad said Ferdaus had no interest in terrorism. FBI operatives manipulated him.

"There was no evidence ever produced that (he) sought out contact with any outside groups before the government became involved or even after the government became involved," she said.

She added that prior to his arrest, he got psychiatric help for depression and anxiety. His parents said he became depressed during his senior college year. In 2009, they thought he was mentally ill.

They urged him to seek professional help. At first he refused. They added, "We took a very cautious approach. After all, he was over 18 and we could not force him to see a doctor….We felt helpless."

Ferdaus was a 2008 Northeastern University physics graduate. On November 1, NU's The Huntington News discussed him perfunctorily.

Instead of explaining FBI entrapment, it regurgitated prosecutorial charges and 17 year prison sentence. What should have been explained was omitted.

There was no plot, crime or intention to commit one. Ferdaus was entrapped, manipulated, and pressured to accept a plea bargain guilty plea.

Another innocent victim of America's war on terror will spend some of his best years in prison. Given his depressed state, he may not survive it emotionally.

Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago and can be reached at lendmanstephen@sbcglobal.net.

His new book is titled "How Wall Street Fleeces America: Privatized Banking, Government Collusion and Class War"

http://www.claritypress.com/Lendman.html

Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com and listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network Thursdays at 10AM US Central time and Saturdays and Sundays at noon. All programs are archived for easy listening.

http://www.progressiveradionetwork.com/the-progressive-news-hour
Report this post as:
Share on: Twitter, Facebook, Google+

add your comments



Freenet/Sone comments box:

This is a comment system called babcom, which is a decentralized, anonymous, encrypted, troll-resistant, comment system that runs atop Freenet. These comments are not stored on this IMC server - they exist in the Freenet cloud, and you must be running Freenet and Sone to see the comments. Install Freenet and try it out.

Use Node:

⚙ Babcom is trying to load the comments ⚙

This textbox will disappear when the comments have been loaded.

If the box below shows an error-page, you need to install Freenet with the Sone-Plugin or set the node-path to your freenet node and click the Reload Comments button (or return).

If you see something like Invalid key: java.net.MalformedURLException: There is no @ in that URI! (Sone/search.html), you need to setup Sone and the Web of Trust

If you had Javascript enabled, you would see comments for this page instead of the Sone page of the sites author.

Note: To make a comment which isn’t a reply visible to others here, include the red link below somewhere in the comment text.

Add this link to the comment:

Local News

#BlackLivesMatter Massive Lawyer Die-In at Los Angeles Courthouse D16 10:11PM

Liberal Majority Passes Sheriff's Civilian Review Board D09 8:40PM

KPFK in fund drive, yet again , but in deeperin trouble D09 12:01PM

INDY lost lots of concerned poster D09 11:27AM

PROTESTERS SHUT DOWN SAN FRANCISCO—AGAIN D07 10:52PM

FREE Silver Lake Consensus, Collaboration & Conflict Resolution Workshop w/STARHAWK D02 8:06AM

Protesting Hewlett-Packard on Black Friday N30 10:48PM

Wayne Pharr, Elder Freeman, Passed On in 2014 N30 2:33AM

Some LA Ferguson Protest Links N27 12:35AM

Protests at fig and Washington N24 11:09PM

LA Protests Grand Jury Decision N24 9:40PM

Chris Dixon on Indymedia On Air N24 6:49PM

NEW INTERVENTION BY FILIPINO WRITER IN FILIPINO N24 6:29AM

REMEMBERING CARLOS BULOSAN N23 6:27AM

RE-VISITING CARLOS BULOSAN N22 1:08PM

Winter 2014 National Immigrant Solidarity Network News Alert! N20 11:12PM

#UCLADivest N19 1:46AM

Ferguson verdict Monday? N16 1:42PM

TV LEGEND BOB BARKER FUNDS ‘LION’S SHARE’ OF SUCCESSFUL MISSION TO SAVE CIRCUS ANIMALS IN N13 11:30AM

Veterans Against Foreclosures Marches in San Fernando Veterans Day Parade N11 2:46PM

Disappeared Documentary in L.A N11 2:23PM

Los Angeles Questions Oversized LAPD Response to Million Mask March N07 1:57AM

Ghosts of Wall Street Occupy Hollywood Blvd Halloween Night N06 12:48PM

The "Cleaning Up" of Venice N02 5:16PM

Activists Hold Prayer Vigil for Lexi Dillon and Jonah Rief in Orange County O31 2:32PM

New ID Verification Feature on this Site O21 1:06AM

More Local News...

Other/Breaking News

Mark Masselli - Healthcare Reformer D21 11:57AM

Ukraine Headed for Disaster D21 9:57AM

Positions D21 8:17AM

Israel's War on Press Freedom D21 6:21AM

US Attempted Color Revolution in Russia? D21 2:43AM

Subversion de la théorie D21 2:29AM

Organized labor unites in opposition to BDS D20 10:49PM

Free Internet Book: After Neolib eralism: The Kilburn Manifesto D20 12:38PM

America's Deadly Embrace D20 12:10PM

Israel Bombs Gaza D20 7:13AM

Targeting Russia Escalates D20 2:49AM

Fidel's Legacy D19 12:58PM

ADI awards Congressman Jim Moran the 2014 Animal Champion Award for his dedication to end D19 12:07PM

REBELLIONS IN NORTH AMERICA D19 10:05AM

US to Veto Palestinian Statehood Bid D19 8:25AM

Longstanding US Cuba Policy: Regime Change D19 4:01AM

(A-Radio) Art and Anarchism D19 1:56AM

Paraphysique de l'anaphore D19 12:25AM

Hands Across California D18 9:54PM

The Shortwave Report 12/19/14 Listen Globally! D18 5:00PM

Putin's Annual Marathon Press Conference Tour De Force D18 12:30PM

Torture in Israeli Prisons D18 9:05AM

Sarswati Help Us D18 7:06AM

Thaw in US/Cuban Relations? D18 3:13AM

EU Parliament Recognizes Palestinian Statehood D17 12:40PM

Review of E San Juan's AMBIL D17 10:53AM

Jeb Bush, Cocreator of 2 Disastrous US Wars, Executioner of 21 D17 10:03AM

Continuing Reports On Crimes By fbi,PI,DPS D17 9:36AM

More Breaking News...
© 2000-2003 Los Angeles Independent Media Center. Unless otherwise stated by the author, all content is free for non-commercial reuse, reprint, and rebroadcast, on the net and elsewhere. Opinions are those of the contributors and are not necessarily endorsed by the Los Angeles Independent Media Center. Running sf-active v0.9.4 Disclaimer | Privacy