Facebook yesterday censored and deleted hundreds of pages from the website that the company deemed to be part of an entirely American effort to influence the public and to possibly swing votes in the upcoming midterm election. The problem is that the company also deleted dozens, perhaps hundreds, of legitimate pages, including many where progressives get their news. The decision calls into question the role that private companies play in a democratic system.
We take a look at political races around the country in the runup to midterm elections in November. Jacqueline Luqman and Abdus Luqman, co-editors-in-chief of Luqman Nation, join the show.
If the mainstream media is to be believed, Russian intelligence services, hackers, and internet trolls manipulated social media in 2016 while employees of the Trump campaign colluded with Russian spies to give the country Donald Trump as president. But in an exhaustive new article in Consortium News, Gareth Porter says that narrative simply isn't true. He says that a report done by the New York Times, which is cited as the definitive piece on this issue, is fundamentally flawed and journalistically irresponsible. Brian and John speak with Gareth Porter. He is a historian, investigative journalist, and analyst specializing in US national security policy.
Andrew Brunson, an American pastor who has been held by Turkish authorities for two years on terrorism charges, which he has steadfastly denied, was convicted in a Turkish court today, but then immediately sentenced to time served. He left Turkey immediately. Meanwhile, Turkish authorities investigating the disappearance of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi told the Washington Post that they have video and audio evidence of Khashoggi being detained, tortured, murdered, and dismembered inside the Saudi Consulate. Dr. Gönül Tol, the founding director of The Middle East Institute's Center for Turkish Studies, joins the show.
Syrian rebels appear to be complying with an agreement with Turkey and Russia to withdraw heavy weapons from Idlib and the buffer zone along the Turkish border. The Free Syrian Army already has confirmed that it has withdrawn all tanks and heavy guns from Idlib, the last rebel-held bastion in Syria. Rick Sterling an investigative journalist and member of the Syria Solidarity Movement, joins Brian and John.
It's Friday! So we'll look at the week's worst, funniest, and most misleading headlines. Steve Patt, an independent journalist whose critiques of the mainstream media have been a feature of his blog Left I on the News, joins the show.
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