IF WE’RE READY FOR A BLACK PRESIDENT, OR A WOMAN, HOW ABOUT A BLACK WOMAN?
We hope you’ve enjoyed our week-long look at some of the independent and third-party candidates in this race. No doubt about it, independent voters are going to be critical to this election, perhaps even the scale-tipper in a race that is tight as a drum.
While the mainstream media continues to openly discriminate against independent and third-party candidates, we feel a responsiblity in the progressive blogosphere to let you know about lesser-known alternatives and give you a taste of what they’re saying.
The story below comes from the official website of Cynthia McKinney, Green Party nominee for President in 2008. Longtime readers of this blog may recall that Robert F. Kennedy Jr. was approached by the Greens last year as a potential presidential candidate for their party. Bobby (a lifelong Democrat), politely declined.
Official Statement from Cynthia McKinney – September 11, 2008
Seven years ago, criminal terrorist attacks on the Twin Towers, the Pentagon were carried out on September with hijacked planes, that led to the deaths of thousands of people. A month later, key figures in the print and broadcast media and members of Congress were sent envelopes containing very lethal and highly weaponized anthrax, which led to the deaths of journalists and postal employees. After the initial shock diminished, there were calls for explanations, investigations, accountability and a reasoned response that did not include war. The administration ignored or openly opposed them. Instead we went into a call for permanent wars that would last beyond our lifetime, changes in civil liberties both overt and covert, a takeover of state power by the executive branch, and the creation of a national security emergency state that would somehow protect us.
Cynthia McKinney was one of the few voices of reason during that time in the Congress. Long an opponent of militarism and wars abroad, she also called for explanations and accountability when information began to come to light about multiple advanced warnings and apparent foreknowledge of the imminence and methods of the attack inside government intelligence agencies that still failed to prevent it. She supported calls by the families of the 9/11 victims for an official investigation in what was being termed a “failure of intelligence” even though it more closely resembled a failure of response, of standard operating procedures, and of government officials and agencies to respond and prepare for, or even comprehend the source of these attacks.
With the formation of the 9/11 Commission at the insistence of the families and the public, press attention and investigative journalism began to reveal much more about the historical relationship of our CIA and Pentagon with the same terrorists who were allegedly behind the attacks, about the role the US has played in the history and international relations in the Middle East since WWII, about illegal covert operations that were hidden from the people and the Congress and funded by profits from illegal drugs, about the obstruction of investigations into the hijackers prior to the events, and about the inexplicable failure of defenses during the attacks. When the official 9/11 Commission Final Report was released, it got wide attention and acclaim from the press, but the families said that 70% of their questions remained unanswered by this flawed investigation, and called for more hearings to get at the truth and to establish oversight and accountability.
Vilified and misquoted in the press at the time, McKinney had raised the first of many serious questions about the events and accountability in an atmosphere of denial. But she was vindicated when others began to ask the same questions in light of the evidence. Unable to get the Republican controlled Congress to allow further hearings, she organized a day-long briefing on the remaining questions and the flawed assumptions, investigation, conclusions and recommendations of the 9/11 Commission drawing on experts from across the country. A full transcript of that briefing appears at:
Long an opponent of government secrecy and an advocate of transparency in democracy, McKinney introduced legislation to release all the government classified files on Dr. Martin Luther King’s life and death. When she discovered at another public examination of the 9/11 Commission findings, held in New York City as a Citizens Commission, that every footnote at the end of the official report refers to interviews, documents and forensic materials that were sealed from public view by the Commission until 2009, she began to call for release of the records and evidence that are the only way to verify the conclusions of the official investigation. Most of these files were not classified or secret to start with. An effort to use the Freedom of Information Act to file requests of all the agencies involved for each document failed to release a single record to date. She continues to push for a release of all pertinent records in the case.
At this point, Cynthia McKinney stands in full support of the 9/11 families groups and the public who are seeking to establish a fully independent and transparent public investigation into the historical background, the events, the official response and aftermath of 9/11. The full truth is not yet known or established in this critical event that has shaped American domestic and foreign policy in the last seven years and may for decades to come.
McKinney is featured in a new British award-winning documentary called The Elephant in the Room (http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=4701757632630708538) about the public efforts to understand 9/11, and the Truth Movement.
She spoke out in New York City on the anniversary of the attack, giving several speeches and press conferences, including one at St. Mark’s Church on September 11.