The blowback from Edward Snowden’s NBC interview is in full force, and the new director of the NSA shares his thoughts on Snowden.
Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl’s rescue has caused a major upset, but is his rescue a clever distraction from the VA scandal?
Plus our thoughts on some recent anti-cannabis news, follow up, and much more!
– Show Notes –
Special Supporters Show
NSA is Crazy
Germany‘s federal prosecutor has defied public expectations by opening an investigation into the alleged tapping of Angela Merkel’s mobile phone by the US’s National Security Agency (NSA).
Federal prosecutor Harald Range announced on Wednesday: “I informed parliament’s legal affairs committee that I have started a preliminary investigation over tapping of a mobile phone of the chancellor.”
According to a survey commissioned by cloud storage service Tresorit.
The survey found that 55 percent of respondents think Snowden did the right thing in exposing PRISM, the mass data-mining program, while another 29 percent believe he was in the wrong, and 16 percent endorse neither statement. Of Snowden’s supporters, 80 percent said he exposed constitutional violations.
cryptome.org counting total Snowden doc releases: 42 Years for Snowden Docs Release, Free All Now
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Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl
Here’s some Recent Hostage Negotiations:
After the North Koreans captured the U.S.S. Pueblo in 1968, President Lyndon Johnson apologized for spying as part of negotiations to secure the release of 83 American prisoners.
In 1970, President Richard Nixon pressured Israel, Switzerland, West Germany and Britain to release Palestinian prisoners after two airlines were hijacked by the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine.
During the Iran hostage crisis of 1979 to 1981, President Jimmy Carter agreed to unfreeze $8 billion in frozen Iranian assets after more than a year of negotiations with the Iranian revolutionaries.
In perhaps the most famous swap, after seven Americans were captured in Beirut, Lebanon, President Ronald Reagan agreed to send missiles to Iran in what became known as the Iran-Contra scandal.
President Bill Clinton’s administration sat down with Hamas in attempts to negotiate peace with Israel. His administration also worked directly with the Taliban nearly two decades ago on several occasions to see if the group would hand over Osama bin Laden and other al-Qaida leaders.
Iran-Contra, as you’ll recall, almost laid waste to the Reagan presidency. Desperate to free U.S. hostages held by Iranian proxies in Lebanon, President Reagan provided weapons Tehran badly needed in its long war with Saddam Hussein (who, of course, was backed by the United States). In a clumsy and illegal attempt to skirt U.S. law, the proceeds of those sales were then funneled to the contras fighting the Sandinistas in Nicaragua. And as the New York Times recalled, Reagan’s fiasco started with an emissary bearing gifts from the Gipper himself
- Military Code Of Conduct: U.S. Govt. “Will Use Any Practical Means To Contact, Support And Gain Release” Of POWs.
Just as you have a responsibility to your country under the Code of Conduct, the United States government has an equal responsibility**** — ****to keep faith with you and stand by you as you fight for your country. If you are unfortunate enough to become a prisoner of war, you may rest assured that your government will care for your dependents and will never forget you. Furthermore, the government will use every practical means to contact, support and gain release for you and for all other prisoners of war.
Insane in the Ukraine:
A Ukrainian government spokesman claimed that more than 300 pro-Russia militants had been killed and at least 500 wounded during an ongoing Ukrainian military operation in the towns of Krasny Liman and Slovyansk.
The self-declared separatist mayor of Slovyansk, however, said only 10 separatist fighters had died and 12 were injured in the fighting.
CNN could not immediately confirm either report.
But a CNN investigation in Luhansk has found clear evidence that whatever detonations hit the building and the adjoining park came from the air. The tops of trees were splintered, and a series of small craters — about a dozen — had been blasted in a straight line, starting in the park and reaching the walls of the building, blowing out many of its windows and spraying the area with jagged shrapnel. That’s what appears to have killed most of the victims and injured 20 more.
The pattern of the craters clearly indicated some sort of strafing, according to a munitions expert at the scene with CNN. Their size suggested 30-millimeter ordnance, he said, which is standard equipment on the Su-25, a ground attack fighter, and the Su-27 — both combat aircraft operated by Ukraine.
U.S. President Barack Obama voiced his support for Ukraine’s newly elected president and called for the international community to “stand solidly behind” him Wednesday, on a visit to Europe dominated by the crisis in Ukraine.
State Department spokesman Jen Psaki reiterated this week that “we’ll continue to review their requests” but that the U.S. policy hasn’t changed regarding lethal weapons. When asked by a reporter here Tuesday whether the U.S. will provide such aid, Obama pointed out that during the Crimea crisis the U.S. provided non-lethal assistance.
WSP: Driver smoked pot before pile-up that injured 8 | Local & Regional | Seattle News, Weather, Sports, Breaking News | KOMO News
A violent Monday evening car crash on State Route 2 in Snohomish County injured eight people, including five children.
Washington State Patrol troopers said the causing driver had smoked marijuana earlier in the day and she has since been arrested.
In Maureen Dowd’s latest column for the New York Times, she describes her scary experience eating a pot candy bar while reporting on legalized marijuana in Colorado.
She sat in a Denver hotel room experimenting with the legalized edible, “nibbling” on some of the chocolate-flavored bar.
“For an hour, I felt nothing […] But then I felt a scary shudder go through my body and brain. I barely made it from the desk to the bed, where I lay curled up in a hallucinatory state for the next eight hours,” Dowd said.
She goes on to explain how her paranoia deepened, saying the high wore off “distressingly slowly.”
“I had been convinced that I had died and no one was telling me,” Dowd said.
- Colorado Sells $19 Million in Cannabis in March: $1.9 Million Goes to Schools and Crime Down 10% | The Mind Unleashed
Not counting medicinal weed sales, Colorado sold nearly $19 million in their recreational weed market in the month of March, and $1.9 million of that goes straight into government coffers and towards building schools.
The legislation smoked through the Republican-dominated House with a 218-189 vote in favor of the bill Friday. The bill’s suprising majority vote represents increasingly joint views about federal oversight of state medical marijuana laws between Democrats and Republicans. The vote also reflects public opinion. The ratio of Americans in favor of medical marijuana is high at 73 percent, according to a Pew Research study.
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