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“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.
“[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.
“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 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.
“[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
“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
“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 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
Buy it, read it, act on it. Our future depends on the knowledge this col-lection of suppressed stories allows us.” —San Diego Review
“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
“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.)
“Hot news, cold truths, utterly uncensored.” —Greg Palast
“One of the most significant media research projects in the country.” —I. F. Stone
“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 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 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
“Those who read and support Project Censored are in the know.” —Cynthia McKinney

14. THE U.S. MILITARY’S TOXIC LEGACY TO AMERICA

While a generation of new laws and a growing environmental consciousness are slowly causing private industry to become concerned about the environment, we are discovering that the U.S. Department of Defense is America’s most pervasive and protected polluter.

As stringent military budgets and the sudden costs of the mideast intrusion buffet the military planners, the United States must now confront an exceptionally expensive post cold-war toxic cleanup.

The military’s 871 domestic installations, strung across 25 million acres of land, produce more tons of hazardous waste each year than the top five U.S. chemical companies combined. Nowhere in this country is the Pentagon’s environmental nightmare more vivid than at the Army’s Jefferson Proving Ground in southern Indiana. Since 1941, workers have test-fired 23 million artillery, mortar, and tank rounds across 90 square miles of forests and meadows. An estimated 1.4 million of those test rounds have not exploded – yet. The result is a 90-square­mile wasteland armored with deadly debris. Jefferson is on the Pentagon’s closure list, and while shutting down the range will save the pentagon $7 million a year, the cleanup costs will run into the billions.

A curious double standard has permitted the Pentagon to ignore the environmental regulations that are beginning to solve problems in private industry. The Environmental Protec­tion Agency (EPA) cannot file civil suits against other federal departments to enforce its regula­tions. The Justice Department, which would bring any action on EPA’s behalf, says the Constitution precludes such suits. It insists that the EPA rely on voluntary agreements with other federal agencies. With the Pentagon already besieged with financial problems, asking it to voluntarily negotiate toxic cleanup could take years.

The result is that cities and states, which must comply with federal standards at their own sewage and waste sites, have limited recourse when Uncle Sam pollutes. The tug of war be­tween environmental and economic concerns will grow more tense. Further, the term cleanup itself is a misnomer. While the worst military toxic sites might eventually be suitable for limited surface uses, they will never be completely safe. And with the Justice Department and the EPA not helping out, the Pentagon can take as long as they want.

The military toxic waste issue has been nominated before and although this nomination appeared in a national newsweekly, it is felt that the continuing enormity of the problem, coupled with its limited coverage elsewhere, still qualifies it as an undercovered story.

SSU CENSORED RESEARCHER: FELICIDAD THORPE-DOE

SOURCE: NEWSWEEK, 444 Madison Ave., New York, NY 10022, DATE: 8/6/90

TITLE: “The Military’s Toxic Legacy”

AUTHORS: BILL TURQUE and JOHN McCORMICK

COMMENTS: The military’s toxic waste issue has been nominated several times in the past and in 1986 the story focused on Tinker Air Force Base, near Oklahoma City. It explained how, for more than a decade, Tinker AFB had illegally discharged untreated cancer-causing chemicals into public waters, despite reprimands by the state, the Environmental Protection Agency, the General Accounting Office, and, incredibly, the Air Force itself. We concluded that year’s synopsis with the following warning: “While Tinker exemplifies the Pentagon’s toxic waste problem, nobody knows the full extent of the problem nationwide and the military doesn’t really know what to do except to conduct more studies. The Air Force has hired several military contractors to clean up its toxic sites; ironically, all of them are major toxic polluters them­selves.”

As this year’s synopsis points out, although the 1990 story appeared in a national newsweekly, it still qualified as an undercovered story because of the extraordinary national scope of the problem and the limited coverage it received elsewhere. As the 1986 synopsis warned, it appears that little has been done to remedy the military’s toxic waste problem since. The Newsweek authors, Bill Turque and John McCormick, noted that the story has received fragmentary attention with bits and pieces of it appearing in the regional press. And, while there has been extensive attention given to the Department of Energy’s pollution problems, “the Pentagon’s slovenly environmental record has been a largely untold story.” Not surprisingly, the principal beneficiaries of the limited exposure given the story is the Pentagon “as well as the giant military contractors who often pollute under the color of their work for the Department of Defense. The authors feel it is important for the public to be aware of this problem since the Pentagon owns millions of acres of land in this country and “Its stewardship of that land is a story that touches thousands of communities.”

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