Democracy Now

Democracy Now!
Democracy Now! is an independent daily TV & radio news program, hosted by award-winning journalists Amy Goodman and Juan González. We provide daily global news headlines, in-depth interviews and investigative reports without any advertisements or government funding. Our programming shines a spotlight on corporate and government abuses of power and lifts up the stories of ordinary people working to make change in extraordinary times. Democracy Now! is live weekdays at 8am ET and available 24/7 through our website and podcasts.
Updated: 3 hours 2 min ago

"Heritage of Hate": Univ. of Miss. Students Seek Removal of Confederate Battle Flag from Campus

Tue 06 38 AM

College students in Mississippi are confronting the national legacy of racism and slavery in a new battle over the display of Confederate symbols. The student government at the University of Mississippi will vote today on whether to seek removal of the state flag from campus grounds. The flag features the Confederate battle symbol in its upper left corner—the only state flag in the country that continues to use the design. It’s the latest Confederate symbol to be targeted for removal from a public space since a white supremacist killed nine African-American worshipers in Charleston, South Carolina, four months ago. Alabama and South Carolina have already taken down the Confederate flag on capitol grounds. Removing the flag would be particularly significant for the University of Mississippi, where in 1962 white students rioted over the registration of African-American student James Meredith, an incident that became a flashpoint in the civil rights struggle. Allen Coon, president of the University of Mississippi College Democrats, and Dominique Scott, secretary of the university’s chapter of the NAACP, discuss the student-led effort to remove the flag from campus grounds.

Canadians Oust Stephen Harper, Right-Wing PM Who Ignored Climate Change & Shunned First Nations

Tue 06 11 AM

Canadian voters have unseated right-wing Prime Minister Stephen Harper after nearly a decade in office. In a surprise result following the closest election campaign in recent history, the centrist Liberals jumped from third place to a parliamentary majority. Liberal leader Justin Trudeau will become Canada’s next prime minister. Harper’s loss ends a tenure that saw him take three elections despite his Conservative Party never winning more than 40 percent of the vote. For a hostile stance on the environment and other signature right-wing policies, a recent headline in The Guardian called him "the last remnant of George W Bush in North America." Monday’s result is also a major loss for the traditionally leftist New Democratic Party, which fell from holding Official Opposition status to third place. The NDP led the polls in August but lost momentum as its leadership drifted toward the middle. Trudeau has pledged to reverse some of Harper’s key policies while backing others, including the C-51 surveillance law — known as "Canada’s Patriot Act" — and the Keystone XL pipeline. We discuss the Canadian elections with two guests: indigenous attorney and law professor Pamela Palmater, and Judy Rebick, founder of, one of Canada’s leading independent news websites.

A CIA Tie to JFK Assassination? Book on Ex-Director Allen Dulles Questions Agency's Role

Mon 06 53 AM

David Talbot, author of "The Devil’s Chessboard: Allen Dulles, the CIA, and the Rise of America’s Secret Government," re-examines what happened in Dallas on November 22, 1963, and looks at John F. Kennedy’s relationship with his former CIA director. "The weekend of Kennedy’s assassination, Allen Dulles is not at home watching television like the rest of America," Talbot said. "He’s at a remote CIA facility, two years after being pushed out of the agency by Kennedy, called The Farm, in northern Virginia, that he used when he was director of the CIA as a kind of an alternate command post." Talbot also asks why the agency has refused to publicly release travel documents of CIA officials who have been identified for having a possible role in Kennedy’s death.

Inside Allan Dulles' Reign as CIA Director, from '54 Guatemala Coup to Plotting Castro's Overthrow

Mon 06 41 AM

Voters go to the polls in Guatemala on Sunday to elect a new president after a popular uprising led to President Otto Pérez Molina’s resignation and jailing. We speak with journalist and historian David Talbot, author of "The Devil’s Chessboard: Allen Dulles, the CIA, and the Rise of America’s Secret Government," about the role Allen Dulles and his brother, then-Secretary of State John Foster Dulles, played in the CIA’s 1954 coup in the country, the ramifications of which are still being felt. "The CIA and Allen Dulles told Eisenhower after the Guatemala coup, 'Oh, it was a clean coup. You know, hardly anyone died,'" Talbot said. "But the fact is, tens of thousands of people died in the killing fields of Guatemala as a result of that coup, and that violence continues today."

After Historic Shifts on Cuba & Iran, Will Obama End Decades-Long Support for Israeli Occupation?

Mon 06 37 AM

The Israeli government has rejected a French call for international observers at the Temple Mount, the holy site that has been a flashpoint for the current unrest in Israel and the Occupied Territories. The United States is backing Israel’s stance ahead of a meeting with top leaders from both sides in the coming days. After President Obama restored ties to Cuba and brokered a nuclear deal with Iran, some are hoping for a similar change on Israel-Palestine during his last 15 months in office. Will it happen? We are joined by Palestinian human rights lawyer Jamil Dakwar.

Israel-Palestine: As Stabbings, Shootings Kill Dozens, Endless Occupation Fuels Vengeful Resistance

Mon 06 12 AM

The death toll from violence in Israel and the Occupied Territories has increased with new Palestinian stabbing attacks and an intensified Israeli crackdown. On Sunday, an attacker identified as a 21-year-old Arab citizen of Israel knifed an Israeli soldier to death and then opened fire at a bus station in Beersheba, wounding 10 people. The attacker was killed. In an apparent case of racial profiling, a mob of soldiers and bystanders then shot and beat an Eritrean man to death, mistakenly thinking he was a second assailant. After sealing off East Jerusalem neighborhoods last week, Israel is widening its crackdown on Arab residents and continuing military operations across the West Bank and Gaza. The United Nations says last week was the deadliest for Palestinians in the West Bank and Israel in 10 years, raising concerns "of excessive use of force, and violations of the right to life and security of the person." We are joined by two guests: Jamil Dakwar, a Palestinian human rights lawyer with Israeli citizenship, and Nathan Thrall, senior analyst at the International Crisis Group whose new article for The New York Times is "Mismanaging the Conflict in Jerusalem."

The Longest U.S. War, Prolonged: After Vowing Afghan Pullout, Obama Extends Occupation Indefinitely

Fri 06 42 AM

President Obama has reversed plans to withdraw most U.S. troops from Afghanistan by the time he leaves office. On Thursday, Obama said a deteriorating security situation will force him to maintain the current deployment of 9,800 soldiers through 2016. When Obama’s term ends in 2017, the U.S. will keep at least 5,500 troops at four bases across Afghanistan. After 14 years of war, the Taliban now holds more of Afghanistan than at any point since the 2001 U.S. invasion, and some estimates put them in control of half the country. President Obama’s announcement comes nearly a year after he declared an official end to the U.S. combat mission, though U.S. military operations have continued. The move assures that despite previous pledges, the war will continue under his successor. We are joined by Intercept reporters Jeremy Scahill, Ryan Devereaux and Cora Currier, whose new series "The Drone Papers" includes a detailed look at the drone war in Afghanistan based on government leaks.

"The Drone Papers" Reveals How Faulty Intel & Secret "Kill Chain" Mark Suspects, Civilians for Death

Fri 06 29 AM

The Intercept series "The Drone Papers" exposes the inner workings of how the drone war is waged, from how targets are identified to who decides to kill. They expose a number of flaws, including that strikes have resulted in large part from electronic communications data, or "signals intelligence," that officials acknowledge is unreliable. We speak to Intercept reporter Cora Currier, whose article "The Kill Chain," reveals how the U.S. identifies and selects assassination targets, from the collection of data and human intelligence all the way to President Obama’s desk.

Drone War Exposed: Jeremy Scahill on U.S. Kill Program's Secrets & the Whistleblower Who Leaked Them

Fri 06 13 AM

One of the most secretive military campaigns in U.S. history is under the microscope like never before. In a major exposé based on leaked government documents, The Intercept has published the most in-depth look at the U.S. drone assassination program to date. "The Drone Papers" exposes the inner workings of the U.S. military’s assassination program in Afghanistan, Yemen and Somalia, revealing a number of flaws and far more casualties than the intended targets. The documents were leaked to The Intercept by an unnamed U.S. intelligence source who says he wanted to alert Americans to wrongdoing. We are joined by The Intercept’s Jeremy Scahill, lead author of the exposé, "The Drone Papers."

Gideon Levy: U.S. Criticizes Settlements While Giving Israel "Carte Blanche" to Continue Occupation

Thu 06 50 AM

In an appearance at Harvard University, Secretary of State John Kerry appeared to draw a link between the wave of violence and increased Israeli settlements in the occupied West Bank. "There’s been a massive increase in settlements over the course of the last years," Kerry said. "Now you have this violence because there’s a frustration that’s growing." We get reaction to Kerry’s comments from Gideon Levy, a journalist with the Israeli newspaper Haaretz. "John Kerry’s declaration is rather hypocritical," Levy says. "If they really wanted to put an end to the occupation, the occupation would have ended a long time ago."

Is This the Third Intifada? Violent Unrest Grows as Palestinians Seek End to Military Occupation

Thu 06 38 AM

The Israeli government has deployed thousands of soldiers and border police and has erected checkpoints to seal off Palestinian neighborhoods amid escalating violence in Israel and the Occupied Territories. The crackdown comes after a series of uncoordinated stabbing attacks by Palestinians on Israelis. Israel says seven of its citizens have been killed and many more wounded by Palestinian assailants armed with knives and other weapons this month. Israeli forces have shot dead at least 11 suspected Palestinian assailants, though questions have been raised over whether all were armed or posed a threat. Overall, at least 33 Palestinians, including eight children, have been killed, and more than 1,600 have been wounded this month. The flare-up is partially fueled by Palestinian concerns over Israeli control of the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound in Jerusalem and ongoing attacks by Jewish settlers on Palestinians. It’s also sparked new demonstrations across the occupied West Bank that have revived talk of a Third Intifada. We are joined by three guests: Diana Buttu, Palestinian attorney and former adviser to Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas; Gideon Levy, columnist for the Israeli newspaper Haaretz; and Budour Hassan, a Palestinian writer, activist and law student at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem.

Norman Solomon: Clinton's Debate Comments on Snowden "Give Hypocrisy a Bad Name"

Thu 06 31 AM

At Tuesday’s Democratic presidential debate, candidates offered differing views on what should happen to NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden for exposing illegal mass surveillance. "He stole very important information that has unfortunately fallen into a lot of the wrong hands," said front-runner Hillary Clinton. "So I don’t think he should be brought home without facing the music." The four other candidates expressed appreciation for Snowden’s leaks and said his exposure of wrongdoing should be taken into account. We get reaction from Norman Solomon, longtime activist and executive director of the Institute for Public Accuracy.

Breaking Silence, Wife of Jailed CIA Whistleblower Jeffrey Sterling Seeks Presidential Pardon

Thu 06 14 AM

In an unprecedented news conference today, the spouse of a jailed CIA whistleblower is speaking out. Holly Sterling, the wife of imprisoned former CIA officer Jeffrey Sterling, will appear at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C., to appeal for a presidential pardon. Sterling is serving a three-and-a-half-year sentence for leaking classified information to New York Times reporter James Risen about a failed U.S. effort to undermine Iran’s nuclear program. Risen later exposed how the risky operation could have actually aided the Iranian nuclear program. In January, Sterling was convicted of nine felony counts, including espionage. Ahead of her news conference, Holly Sterling joins us along with Norman Solomon, longtime activist and executive director of the Institute for Public Accuracy.

A New Snowden? Whistleblower Leaks Trove of Documents on Drones & Obama's Assassination Program

Thu 06 12 AM

Newly leaked government documents have provided an unprecedented window into the secret U.S. drone assassination program across the globe. In "The Drone Papers," The Intercept reveals drone strikes have resulted from unreliable intelligence, stemming in large part from electronic communications data, or "signals intelligence," that officials acknowledge is insufficient. The documents also undermine government claims that the drone strikes have been precise. In Afghanistan, strikes on 35 direct targets killed at least 219 other people. Among other revelations, they also suggest the strikes have hurt intelligence gathering and that unknown male victims have been labeled as "enemies killed in action" unless evidence later proves otherwise. The documents were leaked to The Intercept by an unnamed U.S. intelligence source.

In Defense of Democratic Socialism, Bernie Sanders Attacks "Casino Capitalism"

Wed 06 56 AM

During the debate, Senator Bernie Sanders defended democratic socialism and declared he was not a capitalist. "Do I consider myself part of the casino capitalist process by which so few have so much and so many have so little, by which Wall Street’s greed and recklessness wrecked this economy?” Sanders said. "No, I don’t." Hillary Clinton responded by saying the country needs to "save capitalism from itself."

Is Snowden a Hero or Traitor? Democrats Debate Whether NSA Whistleblower Should Face Jail Term

Wed 06 51 AM

Democratic candidates sparred on Tuesday about what should happen to NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden. "He stole very important information that has unfortunately fallen into a lot of the wrong hands," said Hillary Clinton. "So I don’t think he should be brought home without facing the music." Lincoln Chafee praised Snowden’s actions: "What Snowden did showed that the American government was acting illegally per the Fourth Amendment. So I would bring him home."