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“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
“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.
“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
“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
“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
“[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
“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.
“[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
“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
“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
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
“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.
“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.)
“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.
“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
“One of the most significant media research projects in the country.” —I. F. Stone

11. CIA Warned Bush Administration of Terrorist Attack Prior to 9/11

Based on new interviews with Cofer Black, the former director of the CIA’s Counterterrorism Center, and George Tenet, the former director of the CIA, Chris Whipple reported in Politico that the George W. Bush administration ignored CIA warnings in the months before 9/11. Noting that neither Black nor Tenet has spoken about the warnings “in such detail until now—or have been so emphatic about how specific and pressing their warnings were,” Whipple wrote that, starting in spring 2001, the CIA “repeatedly and urgently” warned the White House that an attack was imminent. (Whipple distinguished Tenet’s detailed interview remarks from the “general terms” in which Tenet had described these events in his 2007 memoir, At the Center of the Storm: My Years at the CIA.)

In Spring 2001, Tenet and Black proposed to Bush administration officials a plan aimed at ending the threat of al-Qaeda. Known as the “Blue Sky paper,” the plan called for covert CIA and military operations against al-Qaeda, “getting into the Afghan sanctuary, launching a paramilitary operation, creating a bridge with Uzbekistan.” Tenet told Whipple that the White House responded, “We’re not quite ready to consider this. We don’t want to start the clock ticking.” Whipple interpreted Tenet’s account to imply that, in Whipple’s words, the White House “did not want a paper trail, to show that they’d been warned.” According to Black, Bush’s staff was “mentally stuck” in an outdated conception of terrorism. “They were used to terrorists being Euro-lefties,” Black told Whipple, making it “very difficult” to communicate the urgency of the CIA’s warnings regarding al-Qaeda.

Black recounted for Whipple how, on the morning of July 10, 2001, Richard Blee, who led the CIA’s al-Qaeda unit, told Black, “Chief, this is it. Roof’s fallen in.” According to Black the information was “absolutely compelling,” “multiple-sourced,” and “the last straw.” Black and Blee briefed Tenet, who then called Bush’s National Security Advisor, Condoleezza Rice. According to Tenet he told Rice, “I have to come see you.”

Whipple reported that Tenet “vividly recalls” the meeting with Rice and her team. (At the time President Bush was on a trip in Boston.) Tenet told Whipple that Blee began by reporting, “There will be significant terrorist attacks against the United States in the coming weeks or months. The attacks will be spectacular. They may be multiple.” According to Tenet, Rice asked what should be done, and Black, slamming his fist on the table, told her, “We need to go on wartime footing now!”

In her 2011 book, No Higher Honor: A Memoir of My Years in Washington, Rice wrote that her recollection of the meeting was “not very crisp because we were discussing the threat everyday … I thought we were doing what needed to be done.” Whipple wrote that, in response to an inquiry about her response to the claims by Black and Tenet, Rice’s chief of staff told Whipple that she stands by the account in her memoir. Tenet told Whipple he testified about the July 10 meeting with Rice and her team before the 9/11 Commission, but this was not included in the Commission’s final report. Black told Whipple that the White House’s inaction “remains incomprehensible.”

At the end of July, Tenet told Whipple, he and his deputies gathered in his conference room at CIA headquarters. According to Tenet, Blee told them, “They’re coming here.” Tenet described the ensuing silence as “deafening.” “You could feel the oxygen come out of the room.”

Whipple conducted interviews with George Tenet and Cofer Black for a documentary, The Spymasters, about Tenet and the eleven other living former CIA directors. Showtime broadcast the program in November 2015.


Chris Whipple, “The Attacks Will be Spectacular,” Politico, November 12, 2015, http://www.politico.com/magazine/story/2015/11/cia-directors-documentary-911-bush-213353.

Student Researcher: Austin Hamilton (Indian River State College)

Faculty Evaluators: Elliot D. Cohen (Indian River State College) and Mickey Huff (Diablo Valley College)

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