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Jeremy Scahill’s War or War. Video of Dirty War discussion at SF Commonwealth

May 9, 2013, San Francisco

Jeremy Scahill spoke at the Commonwealth Club in San Francisco on a variety of topics covered in his book “Dirty Wars: The World Is A Battlefield”, including drone strikes on American citizens, Awlaki’s Facebook wife, the Authorization for Use of Military Force (AUMF), Congresswoman Barbara Lee’s speech against the war, and the ideal role of journalists and the press. He also mentioned a Dirty Wars movie version in the works which was a winner at the Sundance Film Festival. Scahill was ‘interrogated’ by Barry Eisler, novelist and former CIA Operative.


Selected Excerpts

7:35 “And now here we are, twelve years later, and President Obama is using this AUMF to go after people, some of whom were toddlers on 9-11, which was passed to go after the people responsible for the 9-11 attacks…”

7:54 “But there’s something that no one ever talks about, article two of the Constitution, the commander in chief clauses. Cheney and Rumsfeld believe that that made the president a dictator when it comes to national security policy, and the Obama administration has continued to interpret it that way. So what we’ve really seen is a bipartisan power grab by the executive branch that was legitimized by a Constitutional law professor/Nobel peace prize winning president.”

Jeremy Scahill

“The whole war machine is just like one catastrophic threat to the environment writ large” ~ Jeremy Scahill

36:57 “We have an obligation to go to the other side of the barrel of the gun and talk to the people that we’re being told are our enemies…. We have an obligation to tell the stories of people in countries around the world who are impacted by our policies. in operations paid for with our money, and that telling their story is part of fighting for the future of our country too.”

Jeremy Scahill

“What we’ve really seen is a bipartisan power grab by the executive branch that was legitimized by a Constitutional law professor/Nobel peace prize winning president” ~ Jeremy Scahill

“And I think that’s what good journalism does, it’s twofold, it gives voice to the voiceless and it holds those in power accountable. And at the end of the day what I want this book to be is actionable intelligence for citizens to make – it’s an intelligence term – I want it to be actionable intelligence that people can use to inform their decisions on what the policy should be or shouldn’t be and decide whether they want to get off their butt and try to do something about it.”

Jeremy Scahill

“Empathy is a powerful powerful force, and at the end of the day I think that empathy results in people standing up for themselves and standing up for others.” ~ Jeremy Scahill

Jeremy Scahill

Dirty Wars, The World is a Battlefield book signing

Report by James George