Episode

5/31 Henry Kissinger: Worse Than You Thought; Pentagon’s New Propaganda Machine w/ Ken Klippenstein & Nick Turse

May 31, 2023

It’s Hump Day! Sam and Emma talk to Ken Klippenstein, investigative reporter at the Intercept, to discuss his recent reporting on the Pentagon’s efforts to combat disinformation. Then they speak with Nick Turse, contributing writer at The Intercept, to discuss his recent series on Henry Kissinger.  First, Sam and Emma run through updates on the debt ceiling move to the House floor, the Sacklers getting shielded from accountability, conservatives’ turn against Chick-fil-A, Twitter’s plummeting valuation, and the SEIU’s new anti-trust suit, before watching Matt Gaetz walk through the Freedom Caucus’ plan to handle the debt ceiling, and what else could be pushed through. Ken Klippenstein then looks to his reports on the Pentagon’s propaganda efforts, with the recent (re)establishment of a “Perception Management Office,” first, walking through the Pentagon’s history of “perception management,” particularly coming out of the Vietnam war, and the complete public backlash to the eventual establishment of this office under the post-9/11 Bush administration. After touching on the lack of backlash to the recent re-establishment of this office, Ken, Sam, and Emma tackle the actual work this office engages in, and how they keep it undercover. Nick Turse then parses through his series on how Henry Kissinger’s level of imperial bloodshed was somehow even greater than previously believed. First, he establishes the incredible political and media network that Kissinger still maintains to this day, before stepping back to explore his work interviewing survivors and witnesses to Kissinger’s terror and the relentless violence he wrought in places like Cambodia. They also touch on Kissinger’s rampant and indiscriminate bombing of Cambodia in the context of initiating the Watergate scandal, and as the original blueprint for US counterinsurgency “forever wars.”

And in the Fun Half: Sam and Emma dive into the SEIU’s anti-trust suit against UPMC Hospital Network’s monopsony, the impeachment of Ken Paxton, and what it means that Trump is rallying behind him. They also look at the anti-LGBTarget rapper’s appearance on Fox, Candace Owens’ free-flowing fundamentalism, and Ken from South Carolina talks about MAMMOTH climate change solutions. Owen from LA discusses an impending real estate disaster, and Jesse Watters runs cover for DeSantis’ witness to war crimes. Sam from St. Augustine dives into the exploitative world of military recruitment, plus, your calls and IMs!

Check out Ken’s reporting here: https://theintercept.com/staff/kenklippenstein/

Check out Nick’s reporting here: https://theintercept.com/staff/nick-turse/

Check out Ken from South Carolina’s video “Can Wooly Mammoths Solve Climate Change?” here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F87vCO9Ra-I&ab_channel=Mycopath

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