Last week Medea Benjamin wrote about confronting John Brennan on drones at the Wilson Center. I only watched the video today, and was awed by Benjamin's bravery. Watch her being frogmarched from the hall and with perfect timing proclaiming exit lines that would make Shakespeare proud:
I love the rule of law. I love my country. You are making us less safe by killing so many innocent people around the world. Shame on you. [Door slams]
No one pointed out that the person on the dais at the Wilson Center next to Obama drone boss John Brennan is the head of the Wilson Center, Jane Harman. You can see Harman in red flitting angrily to the microphone to try and shut Benjamin up. She fails.
Harman is a great partisan of the war on terror. As she said in introducing Brennan:
This afternoon’s conversation is, as I see it, a great tribute to the kind of work we do here. We care intensely about having our most important policymakers here, and in getting objective accounts of what the United States government and other governments around the world are doing. ... [Brennan has] a broad portfolio to manage counterterrorism strategy in far-flung places like Pakistan, Yemen, and Somalia. Activities in this space, as I mentioned, at the Wilson Center are ongoing, as are terror threats against our country.
The former congresswoman from California is a fierce supporter of Israel right or wrong and is also on the board of Newsweek/the Daily Beast-- which runs Peter Beinart's liberal Zionist website:
After 92-year-old Newsweek/DailyBeast co-owner Sidney Harman died [in spring 2011], the future of the money-losing media company seemed potentially up in the air. Harman's co-owner Barry Diller assumed Harman's position as chairman of the board, but a spot was still reserved on the panel for a representative of the Harman family. Sidney's son Daniel was considered a possibility, as the 29-year-old was the only member of the family who'd actually been to visit the Newsbeast offices. But the company announced today that, in fact, Sidney's widow, Jane Harman, would take the board seat. Until February, Harman was a Democratic U.S. representative for California.
It's sad to see the liberal media establishment so aligned with the militant powers that be. But that reminds me of a big reason I started blogging. In 2004 I was at the Republican convention in New York when Jodie Evans, who along with Benjamin is a leader of Code Pink, stood up during George W. Bush's speech and ripped off her coat to expose a pink slip with the words You have blood on your hands. She started speaking and was dragged from the hall. I will never forget the sight of Evans being brutally dragged up the concrete steps of Madison Square Garden right past me, her shoes flying off. She came out of jail a day later barefoot.
And the reason I'll never forget is that I was sitting in a giant pecking order of establishment media, and they were indifferent. They were too busy noting who was getting close to the big stars in the media, they were bent over their notebooks recording George Bush the warmonger's words. Because almost all of them were in on that war themselves.
These women have put their bodies on the line, and been great leaders. Salute them.