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The Critical Hour
The mainstream news outlets play it safe by parroting the perspectives of their corporate benefactors. The Critical Hour uses clear, cutting edge insight and analysis to examine national and international issues impacting the global village in which we live.

Washington Post Saudi Link; Assange Has Partial Wi-Fi; Harvard Lawsuit

Washington Post Saudi Link; Assange Has Partial Wi-Fi; Harvard Discrimination Lawsuit
On this episode of The Critical Hour, Dr. Wilmer Leon is joined by Daniel Lazare, journalist and author of three books: The Frozen Republic, The Velvet Coup and America's Undeclared War.

Lazare joins us to discuss a recent Intercept article, "The Washington Post, as it Shames Others, Continues to Pay and Publish Undisclosed Saudi Lobbyists and Other Regime Propagandists," by Glenn Greenwald. It questions the Washington Post grieving one of its journalists while at the same time continuing ties with the Saudi regime: "In the wake of the disappearance and likely murder of Washington Post columnist Jamal Khashoggi, some of the most fervent and righteous voices demanding that others sever their ties with the Saudi regime have, understandably, come from his colleagues at that paper… addressing unnamed hypothetical Washington luminaries who continue to take money to do work for the despots in Riyadh, particularly Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, or 'MbS' as he has been affectionately known in the Western press." But Greenwald says Post writers should ask those question of themselves, given the paper's history of favorable reporting on Saudi Arabia's government. What do we make of these headlines?

WikiLeaks Founder Julian Assange is back online — well, partially. It's been six months since the Ecuadorian government suspended his internet access after he discussed issues concerning the country's diplomatic relations. Assange took refuge in Ecuador's London Embassy after British courts ordered his extradition to Sweden to face questioning in a sexual molestation case. That case has since been dropped. But friends and supporters say Assange now fears he could be arrested and eventually extradited to the United States if he leaves the embassy. He has had contact only with lawyers since Ecuador suspended his communications with the outside world. What's the significance behind this move, and what and we expect next?

A federal lawsuit alleging Harvard University discriminates against Asian-American applicants goes to court this week in Boston. While the case focuses on Harvard, it could have big consequences for higher education, especially if it moves on to the US Supreme Court. At stake are 40 years of legal precedent allowing race to be one factor in universities' decisions of which students to admit. The group that filed the suit, Students for Fair Admissions, led by conservative legal strategist Edward Blum, charges that Harvard engages in "racial balancing," which is illegal and discriminates against Asian-American applicants by rating them lower on intangible traits like courage, kindness and leadership. What's going on with this Harvard case? According to Students for Fair Admissions, none of the anonymous, Asian-American plaintiffs who claim they were denied admission will testify. Still, Lee Cheng, a lawyer and secretary for the Asian American Legal Foundation, which supports the lawsuit, thinks the group has a chance of winning.


Daniel Lazare — Journalist and author of three books: The Frozen Republic, The Velvet Coup and America's Undeclared War.

Brian Becker — Co-Host of Loud & Clear on Sputnik News Radio.

Michael Meltsner — Former dean of Northeastern University School of Law, Matthews Distinguished University Professor of Law and author of With Passion: An Activist Lawyer's Life.

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