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“[Censored] offers devastating evidence of the dumbing-down of main-stream news in America. . . . Required reading for broadcasters, journalists, and well-informed citizens.” —Los Angeles Times
“Project Censored brings to light some of the most important stories of the year that you never saw or heard about. This is your chance to find out what got buried.” –Diane Ravitch, author of The Death and Life of the Great American School System.
“For ages, I’ve dreamed of a United States where Project Censored isn’t necessary, where these crucial stories and defining issues are on the front page of the New York Times, the cover of Time, and in heavy rotation on CNN. That world still doesn’t exist, but we always have Project Censored’s yearly book to pull together the most important things the corporate media ignored, missed, or botched.” –Russ Kick, author of You Are Being Lied To, Everything You Know Is Wrong, and the New York Times bestselling series The Graphic Canon.
“Project Censored shines a spotlight on news that an informed public must have . . . a vital contribution to our democratic process.” —Rhoda H. Karpatkin, president, Consumer’s Union
“Those who read and support Project Censored are in the know.” —Cynthia McKinney
“Project Censored interrogates the present in the same way that Oliver Stone and I tried to interrogate the past in our Untold History of the United States. It not only shines a penetrating light on the American Empire and all its deadly, destructive, and deceitful actions, it does so at a time when the Obama administration is mounting a fierce effort to silence truth-tellers and whistleblowers. Project Censored provides the kind of fearless and honest journalism we so desperately need in these dangerous times.” —Peter Kuznick, professor of history, American University, and coauthor, with Oliver Stone, of The Untold History of the United States
“In another home run for Project Censored, Censored 2013 shows how the American public has been bamboozled, snookered, and dumbed down by the corporate media. It is chock-full of ‘ah-ha’ moments where we understand just how we’ve been fleeced by banksters, stripped of our civil liberties, and blindly led down a path of never-ending war.” –Medea Benjamin, author of Drone Warfare, cofounder of Global Exchange and CODEPINK.
“Activist groups like Project Censored . . . are helping to build the media democracy movement. We have to challenge the powers that be and rebuild media from the bottom up.” —Amy Goodman
“[Censored] should be affixed to the bulletin boards in every newsroom in America. And, perhaps read aloud to a few publishers and television executives.” —Ralph Nader
“Most journalists in the United States believe the press here is free. That grand illusion only helps obscure the fact that, by and large, the US corporate press does not report what’s really going on, while tuning out, or laughing off, all those who try to do just that. Americans–now more than ever–need those outlets that do labor to report some truth. Project Censored is not just among the bravest, smartest, and most rigorous of those outlets, but the only one that’s wholly focused on those stories that the corporate press ignores, downplays, and/or distorts. This latest book is therefore a must read for anyone who cares about this country, its tottering economy, and–most important– what’s now left of its democracy.” –Mark Crispin Miller, author, professor of media ecology, New York University.
“One of the most significant media research projects in the country.” —I. F. Stone
“Project Censored continues to be an invaluable resource in exposing and highlighting shocking stories that are routinely minimized or ignored by the corporate media. The vital nature of this work is underscored by this year’s NSA leaks. The world needs more brave whistle blowers and independent journalists in the service of reclaiming democracy and challenging the abuse of power. Project Censored stands out for its commitment to such work.” —Deepa Kumar, author of Islamophobia and the Politics of Empire and associate professor of Media Studies and Middle Eastern Studies at Rutgers University
“Censored 2014 is a clarion call for truth telling. Not only does this volume highlight fearless speech in fateful times, it connect the dots between the key issues we face, lauds our whistleblowers and amplifies their voices, and shines light in the dark places of our government that most need exposure.” –Daniel Ellsberg, The Pentagon Papers
Buy it, read it, act on it. Our future depends on the knowledge this col-lection of suppressed stories allows us.” —San Diego Review
“Hot news, cold truths, utterly uncensored.” —Greg Palast
“Project Censored is one of the organizations that we should listen to, to be assured that our newspapers and our broadcasting outlets are practicing thorough and ethical journalism.” —Walter Cronkite
“At a time when the need for independent journalism and for media outlets unaffiliated with and untainted by the government and corporate sponsors is greater than ever, Project Censored has created a context for reporting the complete truths in all matters that matter. . . . It is therefore left to us to find sources for information we can trust. . . . It is in this task that we are fortunate to have an ally like Project Cen-sored.” —Dahr Jamail
“The staff of Project Censored presents their annual compilation of the previous year’s 25 stories most overlooked by the mainstream media along with essays about censorship and its consequences. The stories include an 813% rise in hate and anti-government groups since 2008, human rights violations by the US Border Patrol, and Israeli doctors injecting Ethiopian immigrants with birth control without their consent. Other stories focus on the environment, like the effects of fracking and Monsantos GMO seeds. The writers point out misinformation and outright deception in the media, including CNN relegating factual accounts to the “opinion” section and the whitewashing of Margaret Thatcher’s career following her death in 2013, unlike Hugo Chavez, who was routinely disparaged in the coverage following his death. One essay deals with the proliferation of “Junk Food News,” in which “CNN and Fox News devoted more time to ‘Gangnam Style’ than the renewal of Uganda’s ‘Kill the Gays’ law.” Another explains common media manipulation tactics and outlines practices to becoming a more engaged, free-thinking news consumer or even citizen journalist. Rob Williams remarks on Hollywood’s “deep and abiding role as a popular propaganda provider” via Argo and Zero Dark Thirty. An expose on working conditions in Chinese Apple factories is brutal yet essential reading. This book is evident of Project Censored’s profoundly important work in educating readers on current events and the skills needed to be a critical thinker.” -Publisher’s Weekly said about Censored 2014 (Oct.)

1. COVERING THE GULF CRISIS. MORTGAGING THE FO FOURTH ESTATE

With the benefit of hindsight, we can safely say that the mobilization of U.S. troops in Vietnam, Grenada, and Panama have taught us a rather sobering lesson: When armed conflict is on the horizon, press skepticism is the first casualty. The Gulf crisis indicates that the press has still not learned its lesson.

What is plain is that many journalists became so carried away by the blare of the bugles in Saudi Arabia that, instead of being the honest, skeptical brokers of information they should be, many fell into that unseemly role of Pentagon cheerleaders.

Perhaps this jingoistic abdication of journalistic responsibility is not surprising, but to those who believe that the press is supposed to serve as an adversarial check-and-balance on the government, it is distressing.

As in Panama and Grenada, journalists and news executives took their cues from govern­ment officials, rather than thinking for themselves. Surprisingly, Defense Department spokes­man Pete Williams concurred, admitting that, “the reporting has been largely a recitation of what administration people have said.”

Meanwhile, dissent from official policy was all but nonexistent in news coverage. In the opening weeks of the crisis, the media focused on the two major questions: “Will we go to war?” and “Will we win?” Far less attention, however, was paid to two other equally vital concerns: “Should we go to war?” and “Can war be avoided?”

While the press was busy christening Hussein as “the new Hitler,” they were slow in un­covering the fact that just days before the invasion of Kuwait, the White House was lobbying Congress not to apply sanctions against Iraq, and that U.S. ambassador to Baghdad, April Glas­pie, was telling Hussein that the U.S. had “no position” concerning Iraq’s border dispute with Kuwait. Nor was there any coverage of the August 23 secret offer by Iraq to pull out of Kuwait and release all hostages (which Bush rejected).

President Bush told the nation that there was no decision more difficult than sending young Americans into a combat situation. The press should feel an equally grave obligation – to scrutinize such a decision and make clear its human and political costs. Journalist Mark Hertsgaard points out that “in our democracy, the press should be responsible above all to the people, not to the president. A journalist who loves his or her country therefore has a duty to question the dictates of the armed forces and the wisdom of going to war.”

In the final analysis, if we do go to war, and the body bags begin coming home to America, journalists will be among the first to say, “We should have asked the hard questions.”

SSU CENSORED RESEARCHER: DENISE MUSSETTER

SOURCE: IMAGE MAGAZINE, 925 Mission St., San Francisco, CA 94103, DATE: 10/14/90

TITLE: “The First Casualty”

AUTHOR: MARK HERTSGAARD

SOURCE: EDITOR & PUBLISHER, 11 West 19th St., New York, NY 10011, DATE: 10/20/90

TITLE: “Storytelling from the Persian Gulf

AUTHOR: DEBRA GERSH

SOURCE: THE QUILL, 53 West Jackson, #731, Chicago, IL 60604, DATE: October 1990

TITLE: “Imperial Thoughts”

AUTHOR: MIKE MOORE

SOURCE: THE SPOTLIGHT, 300 Independence Ave., SE, Washington, DC 20003, DATE: 10/8/90

TITLE: “Saddam Was Bush-Wacked On Invasion”

AUTHOR: JOHN McBRIEN

COMMENTS: The issue raised by this story, selected by the judges as the top undercovered subject of 1990, is whether the American public was sufficiently informed about what was happening in the Persian Gulf area prior to the non-declaration of war. Mike Moore, former editor of The Quill, summed it up as follows: “In the weeks following Iraq’s invasion of Ku­wait, there was ample coverage of military and political events in the Middle East and else­where. The shipping of men, women, and tanks to the Gulf was news, after all, as were the intense high-level efforts to round up international support. If one listened closely, one also could hear war drums in the press, particularly on the opinion pages.” But, Moore, concluded, there was virtually no investigation of “the extent to which a U.S. president can commit a nation to war (or commit the nation to a chain of events that could lead to war) on his own hook.”

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