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The U.S. War on Terrorism
Myths and Realities
Tuesday, September 24, 2002

Lewis H. Lapham
Author, Theater of War, Imperial Masquerade, Waiting for the Barbarians, and other books
Alan W. Bock
Senior Editorial Writer, Orange County Register

Author, Waiting to Inhale: The Politics of Medical Marijuana, The Ecology Action Guide, and Ambush at Ruby Ridge: How Government Agents Set Randy Weaver Up and Took His Family Down

Columnist, and

Mr. Bock is a Director of the Free Press Association; Trustee of the World Affairs Council of Orange County; and former Fellow at the Hoover Institution

Seth Rosenfeld
Staff Writer, San Francisco Chronicle; former Legal Affairs Reporter, San Francisco Examiner

Awards: George Polk Award, Al Nakkula Award, Mencken Award, Hugh Hefner First Amendment Award, James Madison Award, 2002 Freedom of Information Award.

Author of the recent, 6-part San Francisco Chronicle report, “The Campus Files,” on the covert operations of the FBI in the University of California system to disrupt the Free Speech Movement and topple U.C. President Clark Kerr. This report resulted from a 17-year legal challenge brought by Mr. Rosenfeld under the Freedom of Information Act, forcing the FBI to release more than 200,000 pages of records from the 1940s to the 1970s. For years. the FBI had denied engaging in such activities at the university.

Paul H. Weaver
Former Washington Bureau Chief and Assistant Managing Editor, Fortune

Author, News and the Culture of Lying: How Journalism Really Works, The Suicidal Corporation: How Big Business Fails America, and The Shame of the Friendly Skies: How the Pilots Bought United Airlines and Corrupted a Company, a Union and a Cause (forthcoming); Editor, The Americans

Dr.Weaver has been Assistant Professor of Political Science at Harvard University; Associate Editor of The Public Interest; Editor of The Fed Fortnightly; and a Fellow at the Aspen Institute, American Enterprise Institute, and Hoover Institution.

"Nothing will be the same after September 11." This is the view offered since the announcement of the war on terrorism, a "permanent war" declared with an ill-defined objective and unclear enemies. At this upcoming Independent Policy Forum and based on his new book, Theater of War, Lewis H. Lapham will instead discuss with intelligence and wit why the recent behavior of the U.S. government is consistent with that of past administrations. Politicians have long fostered pork, corporate welfare, government surveillance, and global interventionism that have created a more dangerous world. Now, we face the prospects of a major war in Iraq combined with the Orwellian USA PATRIOT Act, TIPS domestic spying program, Department of Homeland Security, incarcerations without charge or trial, militarized domestic law enforcement and airport security, and national ID cards.

Until recently, hearing skeptics of the "permanent war" has largely been a rarity. For example, as Lapham points out: "Ted Koppel struck the preferred note of caution on November 2 when introducing the Nightline audience to critics of the American bombing of Afghanistan: 'Some of you, many of you, are not going to like what you hear tonight. You don't have to listen.'" Unpopular, informed opinions seldom appear on the network news, and since the destruction of the World Trade Center, dissenting voices have been few and far between. However, Lewis Lapham is a major exception, questioning the motive, feasibility and morality, as well as the imperial pretension, of an infinite and dangerous, U.S. global-war crusade.

This special program with Lewis Lapham and a distinguished panel of journalists, Alan W. Bock, Jonathan Marshall, Seth Rosenfeld, and Paul H. Weaver, discusses the "U.S. War on Terrorism: Myths and Realities."

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