By Andrew Kreig / Director's Blog

Jan. 17 is the 50th anniversary of the Farewell Address of President Dwight D. Eisenhower, commander of Allied forces in Europe during World War II. After two terms the Republican war hero used his unmatched stature in U.S. military and other government affairs at the time to echo the Farewell address of George Washington in advising the nation to avoid foreign entanglements. A video is here of the former general's powerful remarks warning the public to become vigilent against the threat to democracy posed by what he called a new "military-industrial complex" unprecedented in United States history. His granddaughter, Susan Eisenhower, amplifies that message in a new essay excerpted below.

The date is also the national holiday honoring the Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr., who was assassinated at age 39 after helping lead the struggle culminating in the major civil rights laws in the 1960s. In 1955, he led the non-violent bus boycott in his hometown of Montgomery, Alabama after Rosa Parks refused to sit in the back of a bus as required under segregation. He is portrayed at right in a 1966 photo via Wikipedia with Democratic President Lyndon B. Johnson of Texas. Johnson, elected to the Senate in 1948, had won from fellow segregationists virtually unprecedented influence early in his career because they believed his acumen could help segregation endure. Instead, Johnson as president shocked his former Southern mentors by pushing through rights legislation. The final push came because of violence in the South and continuing discrimination throughout the nation, including the murder of civil rights workers in Mississippi, the bombing of a black Alabama church and the brutal suppression of Alabama civil rights marchers in Alabama. However, Johnson warned King, according to biographers, that signing civil rights legislation under Democratic leadership in Washington would lead to the demise of the party in the Deep South for generations.

The nearly decade-long, Republican-led effort to pursue former Alabama Gov. Don Siegelman on corruption charges, thereby removing the state's last Democrat of potential statewide electability, suggests one way that Johnson's prediction unfolded, as amplified below.

Click on the links to see the full columns on these and other topics excerpted as follows:

Washington Post, 50 years after the 'military-industrial complex,' what Eisenhower really meant, Susan Eisenhower, Jan. 14, 2011. I've always found it rather haunting to watch old footage of my grandfather, Dwight Eisenhower, giving his televised farewell address to the nation on Jan. 17, 1961.The 50-year-old film all but crackles with age as the president makes his earnest, uncoached speech. I was 9 years old at the time, and it wasn't until years later that I understood the importance of his words or the lasting impact of his message.

Tickle the Wire, Happy MLK Day, Allan Lengel, Jan. 17, 2011. A salute to a man who did some extraordinary things during an extraordinary era. He died at the young age of 39.The man left behind so many great quotes, including this one: "In the End, we will remember not the words of our enemies, but the silence of our friends."

OpEd News, My Upcoming Appeal Hearing on January 19th, Don Siegelman, Jan. 17, 2011. I believe that the U.S. Supreme Court vacated the earlier ruling of the 11th Circuit and sent my case back because the U.S.S.C. [U.S. Supreme Court] wants a different result...That is good news for me. If I do not win ....every governor, every U.S. Member of Congress and Presidents Bush and Obama will be subject to prosecution....Also keep in mind we have a motion for a new trial pending which lays open the government's misconduct starting with [Karl] Rove and ending with Bill Canary [Rove's friend and longtime Republican ally, and husband of the U.S. attorney whose office prosecuted Siegelman -- and who has been retained so far by the Obama administration].

RT, Can Gov. Don Siegelman stay out of jail? Thom Hartmann, Jan. 18, 2011. Video interview. "You don't have a Constitutional right not to be framed."

Locust Fork News-Journal, Glynn Wilson, Jan. 17, 2011. Former Alabama Governor Don Siegelman will be back in court again on Wednesday, Jan. 19, this time before the same panel of Republican-appointed justices on the Eleventh U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals who upheld parts of his conviction in Atlanta two years ago. “I believe that the U S Supreme Court vacated the earlier ruling of the Eleventh Circuit and sent my case back because the court wants a different result,” Siegelman said. “That’s good news for me.”

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Justice Integrity Project Director Andrew Kreig  answered listener questions Jan. 16 on the Connecticut Watchdog News Hour radio and television show. News Hour host Brian Palmer, founder of the HORN network, led the questioning.
The focus: Attempts by Swedish and United States authorities to investigate WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange -- and what that means for voters, news consumers and travelers in the United States and internationally.
Kreig has broken a number of recent articles on the topic, several first published on the Connecticut Watchdog news site founded by George Gombossy, right, after his 40 years at the Hartford Courant. Gombossy who also participated in questions on the show, had been the business editor and consumer editor at the Courant, its state's largest newspaper and also the nation's largest during the Revolutionary War.
The discussion explored how government investigations of WikiLeaks is just one of many restrictions on traditional rights as well as threats to web and Internet-enabled information sources. The News Hour is distributed via Internet worldwide via the HORN, an Internet radio/TV station based in Avon, Connecticut. Listeners joined the conversation by logging in to the HORN and to the accompanying chatroom, which requires a separate login. The interview is stored on the website and at right if you wish to view it. Connecticut Watchdog is a news information site founded in 2009 and now expanding its footprint with a focus on practical information benefitting consumers and voters.

Dr. Brian Palmer of Uppsala University in Sweden provided an illuminating interview on the Jan.13 edition of my Washington Update radio show regarding the influence of Karl Rove on Swedish politics as an advisor to the governing Moderate Party.

Sweden is leading a global manhunt to question WikiLeaks leader Julian Assange on claims of sex misconduct filed by a politically connected lawyer at the same time the United States has launched an investigation of Assange and WikiLeaks volunteers for possession of secret diplomatic cables.

Palmer described why he co-authored a Swedish-language book about political parties were attracting voters, “George W. Reinfeldt: The art of making a political extreme makeover.” The book describes  how  Sweden’s political right, including Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt, were creating an image of moderation, much as did U.S. President George W. Bush during his 2000 campaign.

The interview with my co-host Scott Draughon may be heard worldwide by archive via the My Technology Lawyer Radio Network.  Earlier in the week, I published evidence that Swedish sex probes of Assange and United States spy probes are suspect.

One column published by Connecticut Watchdog was headlined, “Partner at Firm Counseling Assange's Accusers Helped the CIA In Rendition for Torture.”  I amplify these comments Jan. 16 on the Connecticut Watchdog News Hour at 6 p.m. (ET), a video show available  globally.

Palmer and his co-author and Per-Anders Forstorp wrote a 2008 newspaper column describing a visit by Rove to Sweden that year. They said the trip’s purpose was to help conservatives reconfigure their public image in ways predicted by George Orwell and implemented successfully, in Palmer’s view, by President Bush.

“The method was the same as previously used by Bush and now John McCain: taking advantage of workers' anger against the elites,” they wrote.” If there were a prize named the George Orwell Award for linguistic innovations, Reinfeldt would be an obvious winner.”

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Best-selling spy thriller author Thomas Bodström ─ an attorney whose firm represents the two Swedish women making the notorious sex charges against WikiLeaks leader Julian Assange ─ knows better than most people that truth is stranger than fiction.  As Sweden's Minister of Justice,

Bodström, shown at right in a photo via Wikipedia, helped his nation in 2001 secretly turn over to the Central Intelligence Agency two asylum-seekers suspected by the CIA of terror, according to materials recently obtained by the Justice Integrity Project and by the Legal Schnauzer blogger Roger Shuler, who  broke the story Jan. 11.

The CIA flew the terror suspects to Egypt for torture as part of the decade's rendition effort requiring secret, high-level Swedish cooperation. Assange is the subject of a recent global manhunt by the Swedes seeking him for sex questioning. The United States is investigating him intensely, but has not filed charges. But Assange can take only cold comfort that Sweden, under international pressure, eventually awarded the 2001 asylum seekers damages for torture.

On Jan. 11, Assange's attorneys spoke of their fears that if Great Britain sends their client to Sweden for an inquiry on sex charges he could end up being sent by Sweden to the United States on spy charges. There, the defense lawyers said,

Assange could face death or imprisonment at Guantanamo in Cuba, where the Bush and Obama administrations can hold so-called terrorists almost indefinitely with minimal due process.

As a parallel development, the Obama administration has used the disclosures as rationale for a wide-ranging crackdown not simply against WikiLeaks but against anyone in government or the media, particularly the web-based media, who might disclose secrets that the government regards as threatening national security.

Our project summarized these developments this week in a column, "Whistleblower Says: Obama's DoJ Declares War on Whistleblowers."

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By Andrew Kreig /Project Director's Blog

Best-selling spy thriller author Thomas Bodström ─ an attorney who represents the two Swedish women making the notorious sex charges against WikiLeaks leader Julian Assange ─ knows better than most people that truth is stranger than fiction.

As Sweden’s Minister of Justice, Bodström helped his nation in 2001 secretly turn over to the Central Intelligence Agency two asylum-seekers suspected by the CIA of terror, according to materials recently obtained by the Justice Integrity Project that I lead and the Legal Schnauzer blog of Roger Shuler.  Shuler broke this story this morning in a blog headlined, ”Lawyer for Assange Accusers Has Apparent Ties to CIA and Torture.”

The CIA flew the terror suspects to Egypt for torture as part of the decade’s rendition effort requiring secret, high-level Swedish cooperation. Assange, the subject of a recent global manhunt by the Swedes seeking him for sex questioning and by the United States for spy charges, can take only cold comfort that Sweden eventually welcomed back the 2001 asylum seekers and awarded them damages for their torture. On Jan. 11, Assange’s attorneys spoke of their fears that if Great Britain sends their client to Sweden to Sweden for an inquiry on sex charges he could end up being sent by Sweden to the United States on spy charges. There, the defense lawyers said, Assange could face death or imprisonment at Guantanamo in Cuba, where the Bush and Obama administrations hold so-called terrorists almost indefinitely with minimal due process protections.

As a parallel development, the Obama administration has used the disclosures as rationale for a wide-ranging crackdown not simply against WikiLeaks but against anyone in government or the media, particularly the web-based, who might disclose secrets that the government regards as threatening national security. Our project summarized these developments this week in a column, “Whistleblower Says: Obama's DoJ Declares War on Whistleblowers.”

WikiLeaks Questions
Bodström is sometimes described as “The John Grisham of Sweden.”  He left his Social Democratic Party and his Parliament seat last fall to move to the United States for six months, citing a need for family time and to write another book, a curious posture for a lawyer at the center of one of the world’s most controversial cases.

Is Bodström again cooperating with U.S. authorities in their all-out effort to save the United States, Sweden – and perhaps Bodström himself – from further embarrassment caused by cables WikiLeaks might release from its still secret trove? Or are Swedish authorities proceeding normally, as they claim, in launching a global Interpol manhunt to capture Assange to question him about precisely how and why he engaged in sex-without-a-condom last summer with two women who invited him separately to stay with him in their beds while he was on a speaking tour? 

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By Andrew Kreig

Dana Jill Simpson, the Alabama attorney who stepped forward in 2007 to provide sworn evidence on how her fellow Republicans were framing Democratic former Gov. Don Siegelman on corruption charges, today released a statement saying that President Obama’s Department of Justice has declared a “war on whistleblowers.”

Simpson gave her statement to our Justice Integrity Project and OpEd News contributor Roger Shuler of Alabama’s Legal Schnauzer for release first to OpEd News, the main outlet for several previous opinion columns she has written. “We are getting dangerously close to becoming a “Dictator Democracy’ where even our thoughts can get us in trouble,” wrote Simpson, “and anything we do to bring truth to our citizens can get us thrown in jail.”

Aside from CBS 60 Minutes and MSNBC interviews broadcast in 2008 about the Siegelman case, Simpson rarely speaks in public despite what she describes as more than 100 broadcast and cable invitations.  Similarly, she has written only a few opinion columns. Most notable were those for OpEd News last year when she concluded that Supreme Court nominee Elena Kagan was not likely to protect civil rights as much as most Democrats imagined, given Kagan’s advocacy of more imprisonment for Siegelman and similar indications excessive deference to secrecy and executive power.

Simpson’s strong words now are prompted by the Obama administration’s failure to follow up on whistleblower complaints such as hers nationally about the justice system. Instead, she denounces the Obama DoJ’s coddling of corrupt office holders from past administrations and its retributions against whistleblowers and investigative journalists.

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