Phil Ochs 1973 Interview Audio to Video Project Gets Promoted at Celebrating Phil Ochs

New Truth Troubadour YouTube Channel post gets promoted by webmaster Shannon Hammock at the new web site to celebrate Phil Ochs’ upcoming 75th birthday on Dec 19, 2015.

Celebrating Phil Ochs Blog 8-08-17: New Phil Ochs Interview From 1973 Released To Celebrate His 75th Birthday. Founded by Shannon Hammock with a companion page at Facebook. 

SUMMARY OF CONTENT: This interview took place in Washington, DC on WGTB Radio with Rich Lang, Host of Interface, a WGTB Public Affairs Program; Vic Sadot, Interviewer; Sound Engineer: Skip Pizzi. (Total time interview: 28 min, 54 sec)
Rich Lang announces “Interface” show and introduces Phil Ochs and Vic Sadot. Vic explains that Phil is in DC for a week long engagement at The Cellar Door. He then asks Phil about Watergate and what the Senate and the press are doing. Phil talks about “the Watergate conspiracy”, the possibility of impeachment of President Richard Nixon; Rich asks Phil what about Vice President Spiro Agnew; Nixon in the polls, the significance of Attorney General John Mitchell admitting to breaking the law. Phil expresses surprise that Judge Sirica pursued the Watergate case thus far, talks of the lack of character of Eliot Richardson, quotes John Lennon’s song, Working Class Hero, refers to “crooks” and “creeps” (Committee to Re-Elect the President), mentions FBI Director L. Patrick Gray admitting to having destroyed evidence, refers to the break-in to the office of Pentagon whistle-blower Daniel Ellsberg. Phil talks about his appearance on a TV show called “Panorama” the day before and what members of the international press, who were also on that show, were saying about the “Nixon scandal”. Phil comments on the superior nobility and utility of a parliamentary vote of no confidence compared to the impeachment process offered in the US Constitution.

Phil Ochs sings Here’s to the State of Richard Nixon, an update of a song he had previously written and released as Here’s to the State of Mississippi. Only Lyrics in white text on black background during the song segment.

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Vic Sadot asks Phil Ochs about his travels in recent years. Phil covers the globe with his commentary on Vietnam and Cambodia, and his report on his most recent travels to Chile, Argentina, Peru, Uruguay, Bolivia, Australia, New Zealand, Indonesia, Bali, Jakarta, Singapore, Thailand, the Phillipines, “and Philadelphia”. Phil describes the struggle going on in Chile. Salvador Allende, a socialist who nationalized the copper mines, a great national asset of Chile, that had come to be owned by ITT Anaconda. This interview is in May 1973, 4 months before the coup by General Pinochet, when ITT and CIA activities against the Chilean government are being discussed. The coup came on September 11, 1973. Phil cites the assassination of the head of the Chilean Armed Forces (General René Schneider) as a “false flag” operation to make it seem like the newly elected socialist government was attacking the Chilean military. Phil talks about the movie “State of Siege” and the nature of the movement in South America. He describes the tactics of the Tupamaros in Uruguay, and tells the story of being at a university in Uruguay when it was surrounded by the army and shots were exchanged. Phil tells about being tracked and interfered with by Interpol and being taken to a prison. We discuss the role of universities in South America. He says that folk singers make the juke box but it is still mostly romantic subjects rather than political. Phil talks about the CIA financing of a spiritual movement in Chile to drain youth from the revolutionary political movement in Chile. (There may have been more in this interview, but it appears that WGTB’s reel to reel tape ran out here.)

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Berkeley Gathering Calls for Defense of Rights

BERKELEY CALLING! The living Free Speech tradition of Berkeley, CA, the home of one of the University of California’s most famous universities and communities, was shining like a beacon to the world once again. An eloquent and heart-felt call to Defend the Bill of Rights and the Constitution of the United States was issued by a group of distinguished and experienced speakers.

On Thursday, January 23, 2014 over 400 Bay Area residents were treated to a panel of civil liberties leading activists at John’s Presbyterian Church in Berkeley California titled “NSA Surveillance and Our ‘Almost Orwellian’ State.” It was a packed house with a very lively panel discussion. It was also live-streamed.

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Shahid Buttar, Executive Director of the Bill of Rights Defense Committee, was one of the main speakers at the forum. Shahid Battar was joined by Daniel Ellsberg, the iconic whistleblower of The Pentagon Papers fame, a national hero described by President Nixon as “the most dangerous man in America”; Norman Solomon, co-founder of RootsAction.org and producer of the film “War Made Easy”; Cindy Cohn, Legal Director and General Counsel to the Electronic Frontier Foundation.

Rainey Reitman, Activism Director of the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) and BORDC board member, kicked off the event with brief remarks. The moderator was Robert Jaffee, a volunteer attorney on the Hedges v. Obama case challenging “indefinite detention without due process”. Left to right seated are Daniel Ellsberg, Shahid Buttar,  Cindy Cohen, and Norman Solomon. Photo by Vic Sadot

Rainey Reitman, Activism Director of the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) and BORDC board member, kicked off the event with brief remarks. The moderator was Robert Jaffee, seated behind at right of Reitman, is a volunteer attorney on the Hedges v. Obama case challenging “indefinite detention without due process”. Left to right seated at the long table: Daniel Ellsberg, Shahid Buttar, Cindy Cohen, and Norman Solomon. Photo by Vic Sadot

Shahid Buttar sounded the call to Defend the Bill of Rights! He denounced Senator Feinstein D-CA for her role not protecting the American people against the crimes against the Constitution and the attempt to keep the crimes secret until 2038. He asked people to sign and promote the “Shame on Feinstein” statement, which demands that and to tell Senator Feinstein D-CA to withdraw her bogus bill to codify continuing unwarranted, untargeted, and unsubstantiated surveillance of citizens and to resign from the Senate oversight committee on Intelligence for trying to cover up instead of stopping the vast illegal spying on Americans by the NSA. Solomon earlier exposed in an open letter that Feinstein had made a secret deal to keep that level of Total Information Awareness surveillance a secret until 2038. There is a Shame on Feinstein Facebook Page. And the petition is here: https://shameonfeinstein.org

For the more comprehensive report on the forum read Matthew Kellegrew inThe Peoples’s Blog For the Constitution” by the Bill of Rights Defense Committee (BORDC). http://www.constitutioncampaign.org/blog/#.UuYabNLTlkg

 Kellegrew reports, “The panel often focused on the positive, presenting examples of creative ways local communities can engage with the issue of over broad surveillance. Members of the Shame On Feinstein coalition passed out flyers and BORDC’s Shahid Buttar commended the effort from the stage. Buttar put the struggle for a truly accountable government in the context of broader historical struggles for liberty and freedom.”

Executive Director of BORDC, Shahid Buttar, issued the call for a vigorous grass roots citizen campaign to Defend the Bill of Rights. Seated left to right at the table: Daniel Ellsberg, Cindy Cohen, and Norman Solomon.

Executive Director of BORDC, Shahid Buttar, issued the call for a vigorous grass roots citizen campaign to Defend the Bill of Rights. Seated left to right at the table: Daniel Ellsberg, Cindy Cohen, and Norman Solomon.

Cindy Cohn provided an update on the legal challenges to NSA spying. Norman Solomon shared his analysis of mass media coverage of the NSA controversy. Daniel Ellsberg addressed the role and history of whistleblowers and the institutions they confront. Shahid Bhuttar focused on grassroots action opportunities at the state level, including the “Shame on Feinstein” initiative calling for Senator Feinstein’s resignation as chair of the Senate Intelligence Committee, and the bi-partisan “Off Now Coalition” policy proposed in Sacramento, CA, and in other states, such as Utah, cut off the NSA from state resources. See US News & World Report article by Steve Nelson: “Some NSA Opponents Want to ‘Nullify’ Surveillance With State Law – Activists say legislation can cut water, kill snooping at Utah Data Center”.

Shahid Buttar, Executive Director of the Bill of Rights Defense Committee announces “tool kits” available to citizens in the ongoing campaign against criminal violations of the Constitution by the NSA. Short video at BORDC YouTube Channel (2:33).

Watch the entire forum in the video below! “Our Almost Orwellian State & NSA Surveillance Forum” Berkeley Gathering Calls for Defense of Rights in the Sanctuary of St. John’s Presbyterian Church. Posted by Bright Path Video YouTube Channel.

Abby Martin, RT TV Host of “Breadking the Set”, explains “Why Obama Speech Spells No Change to Global Surveillance” in her latest “Brainwash Update”. Abby Martin is “Breadking the Set” of the corporate media’s constrained parameters of allowed thinking! 

Full Spectrum Dominance: Lyrics and link to the free SoundCloud song posted at Global Network Against Nuclear Weapons and Power in Space! 

Are You A Citizen Or Are You A Slave? (5:11) Vic Sadot video at Truth Troubadour YouTube Channel – “Are You A Citizen” is an anthem salute to struggle that is done in strident Cajun waltz style. The song was written by Vic Sadot and Cindy Hubschmidt. It challenges citizen apathy and cynicism. In reciting the successful parts of the historical record, the song confronts the notion that we cannot change anything. Yet the the historical record of struggle says otherwise. Colonialism, slavery, and debtor prisons were defeated. A Bill of Rights, the right to organize unions, civil rights, and womens voting rights were all won through struggle. As Thomas Paine once said, “Rights are not gifts from one man to another, nor from one class of men to another.” Rights are inalienable and not granted by the political powers that be. As the song says, “You’ll use your Bill of Rights ’til your struggles are won!”

Twit Wit Radio 1-26-14 Archive – Berkeley Political Comedy Radio Show Every Sunday Evening on KPFA Pacifica. Activists need to laugh sometimes! And that takes smart humor like Twit Wit delivers! 

Daniel Ellsberg 2013 Berkeley Justice Awards Speech Posted at No Lies Radio

Daniel Ellsberg Speaks in Berkeley, California at the Annual BFUU Hal Carlstad Social Justice Awards Dinner in Historic Fellowship Hall on July 20, 2013. Listen to the audio at No Lies Radio(Total Time 1:31:19)

Daniel Ellsberg speaking to his hometown Berkeley  crowd at Fellowship Hall

Daniel Ellsberg speaking to his hometown Berkeley crowd at Fellowship Hall on July 20, 2013 Annual Hal Carlstad Social Justice Awards. Photo by Vic Sadot

It was a bright shining moment when a faithful Bay Area activist community gathered to hear the legendary Pentagon Papers whistle-blower speak at Historic Fellowship Hall at the Annual BFUU Hal Carlstad Justice Awards & Benefit Dinner on 7-20-13. BFUU member and Social Justice Committee activist Phoebe Sorgen described how “uplifting” Daniel Ellsberg’s speech was and she described Patricia Ellsberg’s presentation as “empowering the audience, lifting us all up as heroes.” Photo by Vic Sadot. See also the photo album of the event at the BFUU Facebook Page.

Sherri Maurin photo from CloseGitmo.net

Sherri Maurin photo from CloseGitmo.net

The first speaker that we hear in this 1:31:19 recording is Sherri Maurin of Nuremberg Actions (00:00:01 – 00:09:57). This group was born out of the struggles to stop the arms trains going through Concord, California, to be sent to Central America. The galvanizing incident of those days happened when the train conductor sped up and ran over US Army Vietnam War veteran-turned-peace activist Brian Willson, who was on his very first non-violent direct action. He continues his activism to this day in opposition to US wars.

Andrés Thomas Conteris photo from CloseGitmo.net

Andrés Thomas Conteris photo from CloseGitmo.net

You can move sound bar forward in the No Lies Radio archive if you like. The Dan Ellsberg segment starts at 00:36:50. At the 00:10:00 minute mark, Andre Conteros, who was on a water-only hunger strike, talks about the connections between the hunger strikes in California prisons, especially in Pelican Bay Prison, and at Guantanamo Bay Prison in Cuba. Indefinite solitary confinement is a reality in both places and a prisoner never knows when they will ever get out of that complete cut off from human interaction. He encouraged everyone to follow and support the hunger strikers at CloseGitmo.net

MC Cynthia Jean Johnson consulting with Dan Ellsberg at Fellowship Hall on July 20, 2013

MC Cynthia Jean Johnson consulting with Dan Ellsberg at Fellowship Hall on July 20, 2013. Photo by Leland Johnson

At 17:45 Cynthia Jean Johnson, former chair of the Social Justice Committee, current vice-chair, served as the MC of the evening. She spoke about the Hal Carlstad Social Justice Awards and his involvement with Nuremberg Actions. At the time of this event and even now at this post time, there is an on-going hunger strike in both Guantanamo Bay Prison and in California Prisons, most notably at Pelican Bay Prison. It was day 36 for Cynthia Papermaster and day 34 for Cynthia Jean Johnson for their participation in a liquid fast in solidarity with the Hunger Strikers at Guantanamo Bay and California Prisons.

Poster by Doug Minkler calling for Chef Djamel to be sent from Guantanamo Prison to Berkeley, CA as per the city's invitation to a cleared  "detainee".

Poster by artist Doug Minkler calling for Chef Djamel to be sent from Guantanamo Prison to Berkeley, CA as per the city’s invitation to a cleared “detainee”.

Cynthia Papermaster of No More Gitmos  and Code Pink for Peace is introduced at 19:00. She spoke about Chef Djamel Ameziane being held in Guantanamo for 11 years and being tortured. She explained that Chef Djamael is among the 86 prisoners still being held after both the Bush and Obama administrations had cleared them. Cynthia displayed the Poster Art created by artist Doug Minkler to promote sending Chef Djamel, an Algerian-born, Paris trained chef, to Berkeley, CA. In 2011 the City Counsel passed a resolution inviting a Guantanamo “detainee” to come here to live and to have his dignity and well-being restored. (Recent June 2013 coverage in Berkeley Calling Blog)

Cynthia Papermaster at the Fellowship Hall podium July 20, 2013 with Occupella and Code Pink Golden Gate Chorus singers

Cynthia Papermaster at the Fellowship Hall podium July 20, 2013 with Occupella and Code Pink Golden Gate Chorus singers. Photo by Vic Sadot

Next, the Code Pink Golden Gate Chorus and members of Occupella sang “It Isn’t Nice”, a song by legendary Berkeley “Broadside Balladeer” Malvina Reynolds, who had 70 songs published in the pages of “Broadside: The National Topical Song Magazine”. (23:00)

At 26:57 Cynthia Papermaster talks about Bradley Manning and the fight to Save the Berkeley Post Office, a demo against Chevron Oil in Richmond, VA, and how the Nuremberg principles apply to UC Berkeley professor John Yoo, who wrote the legal briefs for the Bush-Cheney regime to justify the U.S. use of torture. Cynthia Papermaster saluted other Code Pink Golden Gate Chapter activists in the hall, such as Janet Weil who won the Patriot Award for Aug 2013 from the Bill of Rights Defense Committee, Jane Miller, Holly Harwood, Lisa Geduldigand Susan Harman.

Susan Harmon confronting GW Bush torture legal brief team writer promoted to Judge Bybee

Susan Harmon confronting GW Bush torture legal brief team writer promoted to “Judge” Jay Bybee

Susan Harman (30:00) speaks specifically about the “war criminals living in the Bay Area”: John Yoo at Boalt Law School; Condoleezza Rice at Stanford University; Jay Bybee was appointed for life to the 9th Circuit Federal Court of Appeals; William Haynes is now chief counsel at Chevron in San Ramon. Some people shout out, “What about Nancy Pelosi? What about Diane Feinstein?”

Then Cynthia Jean Johnson introduces Daniel Ellsberg (35:00) to his Berkeley hometown crowd. Daniel Ellsberg (36:50 – 1:08:00) measures the passage in time becoming apparent when he spoke with young activists who did not know who Joan Baez is. Ellsberg comments that this is the 5th year of the Presidency of the man who swore in pre-election speeches to close Gitmo. He pointed to CIA whistle-blower John Kiriakou going to prison for exposing US crimes of torture. He questioned why the Obama Justice Department prosecuted him instead of the torturers. Likewise, Bradley Manning exposed war crimes in Iraq. Yet he was the one prosecuted and given 35 years by the deep secrecy state, not the perpetrators of the war crimes, some of which were caught on photos and videos! Ellsberg relates the history of his own transformation from a high ranking pro-Vietnam War Pentagon Army colonel to many years as a peace and justice activist. He credits his wife Patricia for helping him to make that transformation and to make “The Pentagon Papers” public. As always, Daniel Ellsberg spoke appreciatively about Senator Mike Gravel (D-Alaska) for publishing the Pentagon Papers into the Congressional Record. He always fondly recalls how the Unitarian Universalist publishing house, Beacon Press in Boston, boldly published the Pentagon Papers. Just 4 days later Ellsberg told Democracy Now! how Beacon Press came forward to publish the secret Pentagon history when all other publishing houses had refused to do it out of fear or out of a complete lack of understanding of the historical significance in revealing without any doubt whatsoever that the American people had been lied to by their President, their military, and most of their Congressional leaders. He talked about NSA whistle-blower Edward Snowden and how remarkable it is that young people are becoming whistle-blowers because they “don’t want to live in a world” that the surveillance state wants to impose on everyone. He quotes a more extensive statement by Edward Snowden on that matter. He states his unequivocal support for Edward Snowden and accepts his Hal Carlstad Social Justice Award in the name of Bradley Manning and Edward Snowden.

 Patricia and Dan Ellsberg attending the 2010 Oscars for the release of The Most Dangerous Man in America

Patricia and Dan Ellsberg attending the 2010 Oscars for the release of The Most Dangerous Man in America

Cynthia Jean Johnson mentions Mordechai Vanunu, the whistle-blower who exposed the secret Israeli nuclear weapons program, and how Daniel Ellsberg supported him. She mentions the documentary about Daniel Ellsberg, “The Most Dangerous Man in America” (1:32 minutes long) Patricia Marx Ellsberg (1:10:00 – 1:16:30) lead the crowd in some deep breath conspiring and she called the folks there “a room full of heroes”. Cynthia Johnson gives a salute to Ann Fagan Ginger of the Meicklejohn Civil Liberties Institute in Berkeley before introducing the last speaker. 

Maxina Ventura with Cynthia Jean Johnson 7-20-13 Hal Carlstad Justice Awards Dinner

Maxina Ventura with Cynthia Jean Johnson 7-20-13 Hal Carlstad Justice Awards Dinner. Photo by Vic Sadot

The last award went to Maxina Ventura (1:18:50), another long-time activist from peace actions to “Occupy Berkeley” Maxina speaks about some of the things she has experienced as an activist getting arrested for non-violent direct actions. Max closes out closes out the evening with her beautiful accapella “Nightingale” song. Vic Sadot had opened the evening with his Bradley Manning “Courage To Resist” song, but the recording had not yet begun.