SPECIAL REPORT: "Tortured Logic: McGovern talks about Gina Haspel, the new CIA director"

The Resistance Round Table panel interviews former CIA analyst Ray McGovern about Gina Haspel, the new CIA director who oversaw torture after 9/11. The conversation includes discussion of the U.S. as an 'out law state,' American exceptionalism and the fight to defend net neutrality. Panel: Scott Harris, Ruthanne Baumgartner and Richard Hill (49:08) May 23, 2018

SPECIAL REPORT: "MIT Students' 'Day of Action': Understanding and Resisting Attacks on Immigrants"

Three-part excerpts from Avi Chomsky's presentations at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology's Day of Action on April 17. Includes a historical perspective as well as a question and answer session with immigrants. Recorded and produced by Chuck Rosina, long-time public affairs and news producer at WMBR FM, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology's radio station in Cambridge, Massachusetts. April 17, 2018

SPECIAL REPORT: "MIT Students' 'Day of Action' Takes On Today's Political, Economic Challenges"

Chuck Rosina's report on the Massachusetts Institute of Technology's Day of Action on April 17, where members of the MIT and broader local community were given an opportunity to devote the day to engaging with the political, economic, environmental and social challenges facing us today, through learning, discussion, reflection and planning for action. Includes comments from Avi Chomsky, daughter of the renowned professor Noam Chomsky (12:58) April 17, 2018

SPECIAL REPORT: "Response to chemical attack in Syria – The priority must be the people"

The Resistance Roundtable panel discusses the U.S. missile strikes on Damascus and interviews Stan Heller from Promoting Enduring Peace ( the situation in Syria and the broader Middle East. Panel: Ruthanne Baumgartner, Scott Harris and Richard Hill. April 14, 2018

SPECIAL REPORT: "What's next for the youth movement against gun violence?"

Tyler Suarez, lead organizer of the March for Our Lives demo in Hartford, CT on March 24, assesses the event attended by 10,000 and discusses the agenda for the youth movement going forward. Interviewed by Richard Hill.

SPECIAL REPORT: "March for Our Lives - Hartford, Connecticut" March 24, 2018

Selected speeches from the March for Our Lives in Hartford, Connecticut, recorded and produced by Scott Harris

Panel Discussion: Privatization v. Public Good and the Upcoming March for Our Lives on March 24

SPECIAL REPORT: Organized Labor: Resurgent or On the Ropes?

SPECIAL REPORT: Neoliberalism Comes Home: Connecticut's Water Under Privatization Threat

SPECIAL REPORT: Can There Be Food Justice Under Capitalism?

SPECIAL REPORT: Resistance Round Table – Feb. 10, 2018

Award-winning Investigative Journalist Robert Parry (1949-2018)

Award-winning investigative journalist and founder/editor of, Robert Parry has passed away. His ground-breaking work uncovering Reagan-era dirty wars in Central America and many other illegal and immoral policies conducted by successive administrations and U.S. intelligence agencies, stands as an inspiration to all in journalists working in the public interest.

Robert had been a regular guest on our Between The Lines and Counterpoint radio shows -- and many other progressive outlets across the U.S. over four decades.

His penetrating analysis of U.S. foreign policy and international conflicts will be sorely missed, and not easily replaced. His son Nat Parry writes a tribute to his father: Robert Parry’s Legacy and the Future of Consortiumnews.

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The Resistance Starts Now!

Between The Lines' coverage and resource compilation of the Resistance Movement

SPECIAL REPORT: "The Resistance - Women's March 2018 - Hartford, Connecticut" Jan. 20, 2018

Selected speeches from the Women's March in Hartford, Connecticut 2018, recorded and produced by Scott Harris

SPECIAL REPORT: "No Fracking Waste in CT!" Jan. 14, 2018

SPECIAL REPORT: "Resistance Round Table: The Unraveling Continues..." Jan. 13, 2018

SPECIAL REPORT: "Capitalism to the ash heap?" Richard Wolff, Jan. 2, 2018

SPECIAL REPORT: Maryn McKenna, author of "Big Chicken", Dec. 7, 2017

SPECIAL REPORT: Nina Turner's address, Working Families Party Awards Banquet, Dec. 14, 2017

SPECIAL REPORT: Mic Check, Dec. 12, 2017

SPECIAL REPORT: Resistance Roundtable, Dec. 9, 2017

SPECIAL REPORT: On Tyranny - one year later, Nov. 28, 2017

SPECIAL REPORT: Mic Check, Nov. 12, 2017

SPECIAL REPORT: Resistance Roundtable, Nov. 11, 2017

SPECIAL REPORT: Rainy Day Radio, Nov. 7, 2017

SPECIAL REPORT: Rainy Day Radio, Nov. 7, 2017

SPECIAL REPORT: Resisting U.S. JeJu Island military base in South Korea, Oct. 24, 2017

SPECIAL REPORT: John Allen, Out in New Haven

2017 Gandhi Peace Awards

Promoting Enduring Peace presented its Gandhi Peace Award jointly to renowned consumer advocate Ralph Nader and BDS founder Omar Barghouti on April 23, 2017.

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who helped make our 25th anniversary with Jeremy Scahill a success!

For those who missed the event, or were there and really wanted to fully absorb its import, here it is in video

Jeremy Scahill keynote speech, part 1 from PROUDEYEMEDIA on Vimeo.

Jeremy Scahill keynote speech, part 2 from PROUDEYEMEDIA on Vimeo.

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Between The Lines Presentation at the Left Forum 2016

"How Do We Build A Mass Movement to Reverse Runaway Inequality?" with Les Leopold, author of "Runaway Inequality: An Activist's Guide to Economic Justice,"May 22, 2016, John Jay College of Criminal Justice, The City University of New York, 860 11th Ave. (Between 58th and 59th), New York City. Between The Lines' Scott Harris and Richard Hill moderated this workshop. Listen to the audio/slideshows and more from this workshop.

Listen to audio of the plenary sessions from the weekend.

JEREMY SCAHILL: Oscar-nominated documentary filmmaker "Dirty Wars"

Listen to the full interview (30:33) with Jeremy Scahill, an award-winning investigative journalist with the Nation Magazine, correspondent for Democracy Now! and author of the bestselling book, "Blackwater: The Rise of the World's Most Powerful Mercenary Army," about America's outsourcing of its military. In an exclusive interview with Counterpoint's Scott Harris on Sept. 16, 2013, Scahill talks about his latest book, "Dirty Wars, The World is a Battlefield," also made into a documentary film under the same title, and was nominated Dec. 5, 2013 for an Academy Award in the Best Documentary Feature category.

Listen to Scott Harris Live on WPKN Radio

Between The Lines' Executive Producer Scott Harris hosts a live, weekly talk show, Counterpoint, from which some of Between The Lines' interviews are excerpted. Listen every Monday evening from 8 to 10 p.m. EDT at (Follows the 5-7 minute White Rose Calendar.)

Counterpoint in its entirety is archived after midnight ET Monday nights, and is available for at least a year following broadcast in WPKN Radio's Archives.

You can also listen to full unedited interview segments from Counterpoint, which are generally available some time the day following broadcast.

Subscribe to Counterpoint bulletins via our subscriptions page.

Between The Lines Blog  BTL Blog

"The Rogue World Order: Connecting the Dots Between Trump, Flynn, Bannon, Spencer, Dugin Putin," by Anna Manzo (GlobalHealing), Daily Kos, Feb. 13, 2017

"Widespread Resistance Begins to Trump's Muslim Travel Ban at U.S. Airports," by Anna Manzo (GlobalHealing), Daily Kos, Jan. 28, 2017

"MSNBC Editor: Women's March is a Revival of the Progressive Movement," by Anna Manzo (GlobalHealing), Daily Kos, Jan. 24, 2017

"Cornering Trump," by Reginald Johnson, Jan. 19, 2017

"Free Leonard Peltier," by Reginald Johnson, Jan. 6, 2016

"For Natives, a "Day of Mourning"by Reginald Johnson, November 23, 2016

"A Bitter Harvest" by Reginald Johnson, Nov. 15, 2016

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ACLU Sues for Bureau of Prisons Documents on Approval of CIA Torture Site

Posted April 20, 2016

MP3 Interview with Carl Takei, staff attorney with the ACLU, conducted by Scott Harris


Since the public first learned about the Bush administration's approval of torture techniques used by the CIA and military personnel against suspected terrorists held by the U.S. at Guantanamo Bay Naval base in Cuba and other covert sites around the world, there have been a number of unsuccessful attempts to hold government officials accountable for their violation of international and U.S. law.

On April 14, the ACLU filed a lawsuit against the Federal Bureau of Prisons for their refusal to turn over requested documents under the Freedom of Information Act. The documents sought by the civil liberties group relates to a 2002 visit by Bureau of Prisons officials to a CIA secret detention site in Afghanistan, code-named "Cobalt," also known as the "Salt Pit," where the bureau's staff reportedly gave a positive assessment of the conditions there, and offered training to the site's administrators. This, despite documented evidence in the Senate Intelligence Committee's torture report that detainees held at this site were subjected to torture, solitary confinement and sensory deprivation conditions, which led to at least one known death of a prisoner held there.

Between The Lines' Scott Harris spoke with Carl Takei, staff attorney with the ACLU's National Prison Project who talks about why his group launched the lawsuit against the U.S. Bureau of Prisons – and the larger issue of U.S. personnel and their superiors not being held accountable for their violation of international treaties and U.S. laws that prohibit the torture of prisoners.

CARL TAKEI: So the first revelations about the Federal Bureau of Prisons being involved in the CIA torture sites came out when the executive summary of the Senate Torture Report was released in December 2014. We went through and realized, "Wait a minute. What is the Federal Bureau of Prisons doing at a CIA torture site?" This is an agency that is responsible for running the federal prison system. They provide technical assistance to state prison officials around the country and it was surprising to see them involved in visiting these black sites run by the CIA.

What was especially surprising, though, was that the report indicated that they went to a particular torture site in Afghanistan that's code-named "Cobalt" in the report. Many people know it as "The Salt Pit." And they looked at the conditions where people locked up indefinitely in solitary confinement in total darkness, shackled wall with only a bucket to use as a toilet and said, "We think this is not inhumane," and gave it a thumbs up, and allowed the CIA to continue doing what it was doing.

And that's profoundly disturbing for a number of reasons. So we filed a Freedom of Information Act request for all of the documents regarding the bureau's visit to the CIA black site and all of the advice to the CIA afterwards afterwards, and they stonewalled us. They said, "We have no responsive documents." We did an administrative appeal and they responded the same way, and that's why we're now filing this lawsuit.

BETWEEN THE LINES: Carl, from the Senate Torture Report, what else do we know about this particular detention center that the CIA was running? I know that the torture report cited some instances where detainees lost their lives, who were severely injured in the abuse of prisoners there by U.S. personnel. What do we know about this particular site, as you said, code-named Cobalt or The Salt Pit?

CARL TAKEI: Actually, on the very day that the Bureau of Prisons sent its inspection team to The Salt Pit, a detainee named Gul Rahman died. One of the interrogators had ordered he be stripped of all of his clothing, except for a sweatshirt. So he was mostly naked on the floor of his cell, chained to the wall in darkness in temperatures cold enough that overnight he died of suspected hypothermia. If you can just imagine the setting. Some CIA officials called this place a dungeon. Another CIA official said that the baseline conditions of confinement were so extreme that itself operated as an "enhanced interrogation technique."

BETWEEN THE LINES: Carl maybe you can discuss for us the larger issues of accountability here for torture undertaken by U.S. personnel in the aftermath of the 9/11 attacks under the Bush administration. We know that higher-ups in the White House approved these torture techniques. They called it by a euphemism, "enhanced interrogation" I think was the term they used. How does this case figure in, from your point of view, with the utter lack of accountability for military and political leaders during those years when torture was officially sanctioned by the White House?

CARL TAKEI: Well, it's part of a larger pattern of impunity for the officials who approved torture by the CIA. But I think another aspect of this is it shows how the culture of torture crossed over back and forth between the domestic prison system and all of these torture sites abroad. One of the things that many people don't realize is that, for example, Charles Graner Jr., who was the ringleader of the Abu Ghraib in Iraq, worked as a prison guard in Pennsylvania before he was in the Army Reserves. And the prison where he worked was filled with accusations that guards there engaged in brutal abuse, beating prisoners, spitting in their food, using racial epithets, and in one case, beating a prisoner and using his blood to write the words, KKK. That is the environment that Graner came out of and then brought to Iraq.

So, all of this is connected. The toleration of abuse and torture in domestic prisons helps normalize it in all of the torture that the CIA engaged in abroad. The accountability is lacking and it's something that remains important to address now. In the future, at some point, we need to reckon with this history of torture because otherwise there is no way to stop it in the future.

Learn more about the ACLU's National Prison Project at

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