Originally published on Jan. 25, 2017
On this episode of Around The Empire, Dan and Joanne interview former CIA officer and whistleblower John Kiriakou about the ongoing tensions between the CIA and President Donald Trump as well as his recent article about abolishing the CIA.
Kiriakou explains how the CIA works in both theory and practice, and that the agency’s duties could be better accomplished by the State Department and the Pentagon. The State Department can do the analytical functions of the CIA, while the Defense Department’s already existing human intelligence operations can recruit and run spies around the world.
The discussion also includes Kiriakou’s detailed knowledge of John Brennan and the reforms he made to the CIA under President Barack Obama, and what Trump might do to purge the CIA of Brennan’s influence.
Follow John on Twitter @JohnKiriakou
Originally published on Jan. 17, 2017
On this episode of Around The Empire, Dan and Joanne interview journalist David Chibo about his recent article on the deep state in the United States for Unz Review.
Chibo offers a comprehensive and holistic perspective for understanding the hidden forces influencing the U.S. government by synthesizing theories from seven different intellectuals to finally arrive at a “theory of everything.” Using the famous Indian story of the Blind Men and the Elephant, Chibo shows that each intellectual was seeing only one part of the overall picture, but when combined, the full animal comes into view.
The discussion includes both an overview of Chibo’s article as well as discussion of current events related to what appears to be a power struggle between President-elect Donald Trump and forces within the U.S. intelligence community.
Follow Dave on Twitter @DChibo
Originally published on Jan. 10, 2017
On this episode of Around The Empire, Dan and Joanne interview journalist Benjamin Norton on the ongoing humanitarian crisis in Yemen. Ben has been closely monitoring the situation in Yemen for years writing previously in Salon and now for Alternet’s Grayzone Project.
The discussion focuses on the overall dynamics of the civil war in Yemen, as well as the motives of external actors participating in the war such as Saudi Arabia, the United States, and Iran. The role of the United States in facilitating Saudi Arabia’s brutal bombing raids has put the U.S. in jeopardy of being charged with war crimes.
Ben explains the horrendous toll the conflict is taking on the people of Yemen, the necessity for a political solution to stop the carnage, and the obstacles such a solution faces from all parties involved.
Follow Ben on Twitter @BenjaminNorton
Originally published on Jan. 2, 2017
On this episode of Around The Empire, Dan and Joanne interview war reporter Elijah Magnier. Elijah is the chief international and veteran war correspondent for Al Rai media. He has covered wars in Lebanon, the Balkans, Iraq, Sudan, Libya, and Syria.
Beyond reporting on wars from the ground, Mr. Magnier also offers expert analysis on terrorism and terrorist organizations. He spoke to us from Brussels about the current Syria peace deal and its wider implications for the region and world.
Follow Elijah on Twitter at @EjmAlRai
Read English versions of his work here.
Originally published on Dec. 6, 2016
On this episode of Around The Empire, Dan and Joanne interview independent journalist Rania Khalek about her recent trip to Syria. Rania is one of the few journalists to report from inside Syria and she shares what she witnessed and her conversations with Syrians.
Part of the discussion also focuses on a U.S.-backed effort through traditional and social media to ignore the role Al Qaeda/Al Nusra is playing in the civil war.
Rania explains the “moderate rebels” are, in truth, Al Nusra and those groups ideologically aligned with Al Nusra. If the moderate rebels prevailed, a sectarian bloodbath would shortly commence targeting Alawites, Christians, Shiites, and any other minorities not conforming to their Sunni jihadist worldview.
Follow Rania on Twitter at @RaniaKhalek
Originally published on Dec. 19, 2016
Around The Empire is a new podcast hosted by Shadowproof writers Dan Wright and Joanne Leon. Every week they explore the massive imperial apparatus of the United States and have an in-depth discussion about one of its many tentacles.
On this episode, Dan and Joanne discuss the rebels in Syria that the mainstream media has been promoting as freedom fighters, as well as the different powers waging proxy wars in Syria. They also talk about what might happen after Aleppo falls.