Video: Medea Benjamin interrupts Obama speech on US drone policy

ActivismMiddle EastUS Politics
on 32 Comments

President Obama just concluded a speech at National Defense University on the ongoing “war on terror,” including U.S. drone policy and the Guantanamo Bay detention facility. You can read the prepared transcript here.

Code Pink’s Medea Benjamin interrupted the president several times during the speech. NBC News reports:

Though the president appeared somewhat irritated by the interruption, he said he was willing to cut the woman “some slack, because it’s worth being passionate about.”

He added after another interruption: “The voice of that woman is worth paying attention to. Obviously I do not agree with much of what she said. And obviously she wasn’t listening to me and much of what I said. But these are tough issues, and the suggestion that we can gloss over them is wrong.”

The video above shows Medea as she was removed from the event.

About Adam Horowitz

Adam Horowitz is Co-Editor of

Other posts by .

Posted In:

32 Responses

  1. Les
    May 23, 2013, 3:57 pm

    She puts “liberal” Democrats to shame who would be the loudest in opposition if Bush were doing what Obama does.

  2. just
    May 23, 2013, 3:59 pm

    Thank you Medea– you spoke for millions around the world, and for me.

    I thought that Mr. Obama handled the situation well. There was much more she said before being escorted out, and that is good.

    She made her points and he acknowledged them as important.

  3. MRW
    May 23, 2013, 4:11 pm

    Good for her. I heard the woman on NPR, but didn’t realize it was Medea. I thought as I listened to it on the radio, This woman has her points prepared, although I could barely make out what she was saying.

    You know how Obama is always saying you’ve got to make me do it? Meaning people have got to complain to force the President to act? Maybe his allowing this complaint was in this vein, allowing people to see that there is dissent in the land.

    Anyway, I’m glad she did it.

  4. Annie Robbins
    May 23, 2013, 4:12 pm

    i love medea.

  5. Taxi
    May 23, 2013, 4:40 pm

    Massive courage, Medea, wow what naked conviction!

    The strangled voice of truth in the house of lies – what a song it sang!

  6. miriam6
    May 23, 2013, 5:30 pm

    Well done Medea!

  7. ritzl
    May 23, 2013, 5:34 pm

    Way to go Medea/Code Pink!

    I have to believe that Obama knows exactly who she is at this point, and that she represents maybe 5%± of Dems vote total. How much big donor money and suck-up policies does it take to make up those votes, if it’s even possible to de-alienate the alienated with money and ads?

    She/CP have created a following and are changing politics bit by bit. Obama can’t afford to alienate her. Doing the right and courageous thing has power, (contrary to popular Beltway belief??).

  8. ActivistGal
    May 23, 2013, 5:51 pm

    This actually made the 10 o’clock news just now in the UK! I’m impressed! I wish more people would listen to what she has to say. About a year or so after Obama was elected, there was a great deal of disappointment re his stance on Gitmo, etc, and her response was that we should not be disheartened or become apathetic, but continue to challenge him to hold true to his campaign pledges because he would not have won had it not been for the overwhelming desire for change within the US. She argued that it was that same energy and motivation that should be harnessed to push for change.

    Sadly, so many “liberals” have become apathetic and resigned (or just wilfully blind and ignorant) re his hypocrisy, that it’s really quite frustrating.

    • lysias
      May 24, 2013, 3:58 pm

      There was also an article on Medea’s confrontation of Obama in this morning’s Washington Post (on page A6 or so).

  9. dano
    May 23, 2013, 5:56 pm

    How is it that she keeps getting admitted to these events, you’d think the authorities would know by now and keep her out.

    • ritzl
      May 25, 2013, 2:10 am

      They know who she is and they DO NOT keep her out. That should speak volumes…

  10. tanoli
    May 23, 2013, 7:43 pm

    That was awesome…..wondering if MSM will play this. I watched the speech, but the audio of Medea was not too clear.

  11. Bumblebye
    May 23, 2013, 7:45 pm

    Oooh! Just heard Medea’s gonna be on ‘my’ radio station – bbcR5 “Up All Night”! I’ll have to wait a few hours tho, I expect.

  12. gingershot
    May 23, 2013, 8:33 pm

    Courage is contagious – wow! She just kept it up the whole way out and I was hanging on every word

  13. PeaceThroughJustice
    May 23, 2013, 10:01 pm

    Jeffrey Goldberg just tweeted:
    “Medea Benjamin, Obama’s heckler, is a Hamas apologist.”
    18 minutes ago

    • Les
      May 24, 2013, 10:56 pm

      American born Corporal Goldberg’s military service as an IDF camp guard over Palestinians, explains whose apologist he is.

    • ritzl
      May 25, 2013, 2:15 am

      Weak-ass s**t and getting weaker each time it’s used/he uses it. I hope he gets Twitter-reemed for invoking it. And by Twitter-reemed I mean, with the power and impact of social media, he becomes less employable.

  14. RepresentativePress
    May 23, 2013, 11:24 pm

    Medea Benjamin is terrific and what she did was awesome. Obama is a lawless thug. What kind of apologist can make excuses for Obama insisting that Libya was not only not a war but wasn’t even hostilities?! I’m already in contact with CODEPINK and the process is underway, I’ll be making a video for my RepresentativePress channel to help amplify Medea’s message. They sent me their press release which I posted on my blog. I notice Obama didn’t answer her question, “Will you compensate the families of innocent victims?” Obama should be impeached.

  15. Qualtrough
    May 24, 2013, 12:20 am

    She’s the real deal. Gutsy and doing what we should all be doing on a daily basis when it comes to the government officials wreaking our foreign policy on the rest of the word. I wrote her once about something and she took the time to write me back right away, and it wasn’t just a boilerplate response. I have sent Code Pink money and it is time to send them some more.

  16. seafoid
    May 24, 2013, 9:14 am

    My theory is that war is the only acceptable means of deficit spending for Republicans and so the drones continue. There is no other rational explanation for the war.

    • lysias
      May 24, 2013, 3:59 pm

      Which perhaps makes it significant that Obama said this war (which I think he has yet to name) will have to end sometime.

  17. Justpassingby
    May 24, 2013, 10:09 am

    Great job Medea!

  18. kalithea
    May 24, 2013, 10:59 am

    A liberal holding a supposed liberals’ feet to the fire and shaming all his supporters…what a novelty!

    I’m tired of the gullible bull. Don’t be fooled AGAIN by Obama! Obama is the one that expanded a brutal drone program and escalated the war in Afghanistan that has in turn created “lone wolf” blowback.

    The phony “war on terror” is steeped in Islamophobia, profiling, entrapment, extra-judicial brutality, a two-tier racist policy and by-pass of the rule of law targeting Muslims and the repeated murder of innocents.

    The “war on terror” is a front for a war on Muslims benefiting American and Israeli interests and pretending to benefit British and Nato interests. This destructive “war on terror” is creating great unrest, chaos and anger in the Muslim world, and STILL Americans and Britons IGNORE the real narrative, the truth, pretending that lone wolves exist in a vacuum when this couldn’t be further from the truth. These “lone” players are part of a smoldering collective of resentment. It is the injustice and brutality fueled by this phony “war on terror” that should be the narrative that everyone picks up on. It’s staring everyone in the face: it’s the occupation of Muslim lands, the meddling in their political affairs and the repeated killing of Muslims that creates lone wolves and other Muslim blowback! The front that is the “war on terror” and the injustice that it represents is creating Muslim vigilantes who believe that the only option they have left to stop this war on Muslims is their own brand of “justice”. When you by-pass the rule of law you inspire others to do the same.

    For decades now, Muslims have been a target on practically every continent, but especially in the Middle East from foreign intervention, aggression and occupation so it’s not surprising that Muslims believe they are being targeted as a whole. Millions of Muslims have been victims of destruction in varying degrees fueled by the so-called “war on terror” whether they were killed for no reason, maimed, had their homes and infra-structure destroyed or were forced to live as refugees. The destruction that has befallen these MILLIONS of Muslims is staggering and very few in Western society have bothered to take time out of their superficial, materialistic existence to express any kind of compassion for these people or have bothered to stand up against this continuing brutality and destruction waged upon Muslims.

    It is up to everyone in a so-called superior, democratic society; not just the brave and justifiably persistent Medea, to denounce Obama’s policies and U.S. and Israeli brutality, occupation and interference in Muslim territory. But apparently our own society is more depraved than we care to admit.

    This is not “too-little-too-late Obama”! This is the Obama who expanded, escalated, meddled in and by-passed the law now pretending he is powerless to do otherwise! Oh puh-leez! Remember his West Point and Nobel speeches — he has zero integrity and is and always will be a FRAUD. Obama is responsible for coddling a twisted post-9/11 vengeful mindset making Americans believe that by-passing the Law and escalating hostility is a necessary evil conduit to peace and security which is TOTAL BULLSHET.

  19. Wonder Bunder
    May 24, 2013, 2:14 pm

    “That woman?”

    Her name is Medea Benjamin, Mr. President. I suggest you learn it. You’ll be hearing from her again, and she has more integrity and courage in her little finger than you do in your entire being.

  20. Inanna
    May 25, 2013, 12:21 am

    Damn it Obama, stop saying what we want to hear and start doing what you say you’ll do. Medea is listening to you and hearing you and she’s telling you that your talk and your walk don’t match.

    • Wonder Bunder
      May 25, 2013, 3:49 pm

      They haven’t been matching for the last five years. I wonder when he’ll start trying to reconcile the two.

Leave a Reply