Gorilla Radio with Chris Cook, John Helmer, Janine Bandcroft February 14th, 2019

What do any of us really know?

For the most part, our understanding of reality is based on what we’ve been told; told by parents, teachers, friends, and the media. And who told them?

There is though another path to discovery. Go to the places where things are happening; talk to the people making them happen, then decide what’s true.

But, and it’s a vitally big but; be careful what you ask, for you could find out more than it’s safe to know.

As the first cracks of the Soviet Empire’s eroding iron facade opened, Australian-born author, political essayist, professor of political science, and policy advisor to presidents and prime ministers, John Helmer headed for Moscow, determined to establish what was to become the longest continuously operating foreign press bureau in the capital.

From his position as an independent of single-national, or commercial sponsorship reporter, he ventured into the country’s unpredictable, and often precarious economic transition period; a time that would see coup attempts, the undoing of international political superstar, Mikhail Gorbachev, and fall of Russia’s communist system itself. It would too usher in the tempestuous Age of the Oligarchs.

Some of John Helmer’s book titles include: ‘The Deadly Simple Mechanics of Society’, ‘Drugs and Minority Oppression’, (with Claudia Wright) ‘The Jackal’s Wedding – American Power, Arab Revolt’, ‘Grand Strategy for Small Countries, Case Studies in Transforming Weakness into Power,’ (and with Ajay Goyal) ‘Uncovering Russia’. His latest book is the newly out political and personal memoir, ‘The Man Who Knows Too Much About Russia‘.

John Helmer and a special, Gorilla Radio double-yolker, getting to know too much about Russia.

And; Victoria-based activist and long-time contributor to Gorilla Radio, Janine Bandcroft will be here at the three-quarter mark, bringing us up to speed with some of what’s good to do in and around our town in the coming week. But first, the man who knew too much, John Helmer. 

Chris Cook hosts Gorilla Radio, airing live every Thursday between 11-Noon Pacific Time. In Victoria at 101.9FM, and on the internet at: http://cfuv.uvic.ca.  He also serves as a contributing editor to the web news site, http://www.pacificfreepress.com. Check out the GR blog at: http://gorillaradioblog.blogspot.ca/

Gorilla Radio Flashbacks with Chris Cook, Harry Rankin May 15th, 2001

The most interesting facet of the gem that is B.C.’s looming election is the fate of the left. With the long awaited pendulum swing away from neo-liberalism, if the paid pollsters are to be believed, at least four years away for British Columbia, the NDP and Greens fighting over the official opposition bone, the poor lefty is left to decide whether to vote with conviction, or sour pragmatism. But why has it come to this? And what can the citizen do. On today’s program, two views of politics British Columbia style. Harry Rankin is no stranger to the politics of the left, and no stranger to the taciturn Premier in waiting, Gordon Campbell. Rankin rankled Vancouver Mayor, Gordon Campbell as a Vancouver City councilor throughout Mr. Campbell’s disastrous tenure as Mayor. In the first half o the show, legendary lefty, Harry Rankin…

Gorilla Radio with Chris Cook, Daniel Kovalik, Denis Halliday, Christopher Black, Janine Bandcroft Feb. 7, 2019

The Lima Group met Monday in Ottawa to make official its determination to overthrow the government of Venezuela, as detailed in its ‘Ottawa Declaration‘.

An offshoot of the Organization of American States, the Lima Group formed following the OAS’s failure to agree on the forced removal of president Nicolas Maduro.

In addition to hosting the meeting, and adding its capital’s name to the Group’s declaration, Canada’s foreign minister promised 53 million Canadian dollars in “humanitarian and development aid” to be delivered to what Chrystia Freeland termed, its “trusted partners” in the embattled South American nation.

Daniel Kovalik is a labor and human rights lawyer, essayist, and author of the critically-acclaimed books, ‘The Plot to Scapegoat Russia’, and ‘The Plot to Attack Iran’. The third in his “plot to” trilogy, ‘The Plot to Control the World: How the US Spent Billions to Change the Outcome of Elections Around the World’ is newly out and couldn’t be more timely. Dan has too served as an election observor multiple times in Venezuela, and other Latin American countries, and is just returned from Caracas.

Dan Kovalik in the first half.

And; despite a gruesome colonial past, and more recent history of supporting dictatorships, Canada still gets a lot of mileage out of its “democracy-loving” reputation. It scores a solid six on The Economist’s annual rating of global democratic performance, and does almost as well on international justice indices. In fact, Canada’s “rule of law” bona fides is wielded more and more by the prime minister, even as the country diverges further and further from it.

Christopher Black is a Toronto-based criminal lawyer specializing in international war crimes cases, and executive member of the Canadian Peace Congress. He’s also an author, poet, and essayist who’s latest book is, ‘Beneath the Clouds’. Black’s articles on international law, politics and World events appear at New Eastern Outlook among other places, and his latest, ‘The Lima Group: International Outlaws’ serves as indictment of a gang of nations gone rogue.

Christopher Black and declaring Ottawa outlaws in the second half.

And; Victoria-based activist and long-time Gorilla Radio contributor, Janine Bandcroft will be here at the bottom of the hour with the Left Coast Events Bulletin of some of the good things to be gotten up to around our town in the coming week. But first, Dan Kovalik and a kettle of vultures over Caracas.

Chris Cook hosts Gorilla Radio, airing live every Thursday between 11-Noon Pacific Time. In Victoria at 101.9FM, and on the internet at: http://cfuv.uvic.ca.  He also serves as a contributing editor to the web news site, http://www.pacificfreepress.com. Check out the GR blog at: http://gorillaradioblog.blogspot.ca/

Ape Goes to the Victoria Hands Off Venezuela Demo (cut) February 2, 2019

Went down to the demo., sponsored by the Young Communist League and supported by CUPE.

Speakers in order were:

 

Tyson Strandland (Young Communist League)

Dr. Joan Russow (Former Green Party of Canada Leader)

Crazy fascist (heckler)

Rodrigo Garcia (FLMN)

Professor Larry Hannant (Camosun College)

Ape Goes to the Victoria Hands Off Venezuela Rally Feb. 2, 2019

Went down to the demo. to stand with like-minded Canadians opposed to the country’s position on the attempted coup in Venezuela.

Gorilla Radio with Chris Cook, Astra Taylor, John Helmer, Janine Bandcroft January 31st, 2019

From the barricades of France’s Gilets Jaunes and America’s Black Lives Matter marches, to Venezuela’s Bolivarian reactionary mobilizations, and the “coloured revolutions” manifesting around the globe, it’s clear: we’re living in an age of political upheaval. But are scenes of the People taking to the streets an ominous precursor of chaos and civilization’s end to come, or hopeful sign of civic renewal and democratic vibrancy?

Astra Taylor is a political activist, organizer, and co-founder of Debt Collective, a “community of debtors… working to build a new economy.” She is too an award-winning filmmaker, whose credits include, ‘Examined Life‘, ‘Zizek!‘, and her most recent, ‘What Is Democracy?’, featured at the upcoming Victoria Film Festival.

Astra’s also the American Book Award-winning author of, ‘The People’s Platform: Taking Back Power and Culture in the Digital Age‘, and an essayist whose writing has appeared at The New York Times, London Review of Books, and The Walrus among other places. Her new book, ‘Democracy May Not Exist, But We’ll Miss It When It’s Gone’ is due out any day.

Astra Taylor in the first half.

And; the long-running fiasco that has become Great Britain’s political reality may prove H.L. Menken’s maxim: “Under democracy one party always devotes its chief energies to trying to prove that the other party is unfit to rule – and both commonly succeed, and are right.”

John Helmer is a journalist, former academic, government policy advisor, author, and broadcaster. He’s the longest-serving Russia-based foreign correspondent, and sole western journalist directing his own news bureau, independent of any single national or commercial encumbrance, and principal behind the news website, Dances with Bears, where his recent article, ‘Novichok Full O’Nuts – In the Case of Sergei Skripal Police Commissioner Angus MacPherson Lifts the Lid‘ is one of a series chronicling the continuing inability, or unwillingness, of the May government to provide a consistent narrative surrounding the case that strained Anglo-Russian relations to breaking point.

Helmer’s titles include, (with Max van der Werff) ‘The Lie That Shot Down MH17 – The True Story of Who Did’, Grand Strategy for Small Countries, Case Studies in Transforming Weakness into Power,’ Russian State Strategy on the Cheap,’ among others. His latest, newly released book is his political memoir, ‘The Man Who Knows Too Much About Russia‘.

John Helmer and clearing finally the malodorous May miasma shrouding the sinister Skripal affair in the second half.

And; Victoria-based activist and long-time Gorilla Radio contributor, Janine Bandcroft will be here at the bottom of the hour with the Left Coast Events Bulletin of some of the good things to be gotten up to in the coming week. But first, Astra Taylor asking, “Just What Is Democracy?

Chris Cook hosts Gorilla Radio, airing live every Thursday between 11-Noon Pacific Time. In Victoria at 101.9FM, and on the internet at: http://cfuv.uvic.ca.  He also serves as a contributing editor to the web news site, http://www.pacificfreepress.com. Check out the GR blog at: http://gorillaradioblog.blogspot.ca/

Gorilla Radio with Chris Cook, Dahr Jamail, Andy Worthington, Janine Bandcroft January 24th, 2019

It doesn’t matter who or what is to blame; or even if laying blame is appropriate. The fact is, the planet is changing, and that change is quickening. The predicted emerging climate is favourable to neither us, nor most of the rest of nature. In short, whether recognized or not, humanity is headed for an extinction whose eventuality is not a matter of “if”, but “when”. So then, how do we go on from here?

Dahr Jamail is a journalist and author who has, as staff writer at Truthout, been writing about climate change for the past decade or more. His book, ‘The End of Ice: Bearing Witness and Finding Meaning in the Path of Climate Destruction‘ is newly released and a firsthand account of visiting and revisiting places on an extincting planet.

But lest you despair, consider what End of Ice reviewer, David Swanson observes,

“There is no preventing utter disaster. Yet there is urgency. The need is to work to slow the collapse and to mitigate its impacts and provide aid to each other as it washes over us.”

Dahr Jamail in the first half.

And; as the Earth is an island, isolated from the rest of creation by that unfathomable ocean, the frigid vacuum of space, it too contains within it islands unreachable. One such place is Guantánamo Bay, Cuba where reside the prisoners of the forever Global War on Terror in the infamous mother of America’s Black Site gulags.

Andy Worthington is an investigative journalist, author, campaigner, commentator and public speaker. A recognized authority on Guantánamo and the “war on terror”, Andy is co-founder of Close Guantánamo, and We Stand With Shaker, campaigns dedicated to bringing justice for inmates of there past and present. The London-based Worthington is also a singer, songwriter, founding member of the band, The Four Fathers and urban photographer.

Andy Worthington and renewing resistance to Guantánamo in the second half.

And; Victoria-based activist and long-time Gorilla Radio contributor, Janine Bandcroft will be here at the bottom of the hour with the Left Coast Events Bulletin of some of the good things to be gotten up to in and around our town in the coming week. But first, Dahr Jamail and is the End of Ice the end of us?

Chris Cook hosts Gorilla Radio, airing live every Thursday between 11-Noon Pacific Time. In Victoria at 101.9FM, and on the internet at: http://cfuv.uvic.ca.  He also serves as a contributing editor to the web news site, http://www.pacificfreepress.com. Check out the GR blog at: http://gorillaradioblog.blogspot.ca/

Ape Goes to Chris Hedges’ Christian Fascism and the Rise of Donald Trump at UVic Jan 17th, 2019

Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist, author, and broadcaster, Chris Hedges spoke to a double capacity crowd at the University of Victoria tonight on the theme of Christian fascism and his most recent book, ‘America: The Farewell Tour.’

Overflow rooms overflowed as soon as they opened, sending some away disappointed.

Gorilla Radio with Chris Cook, Dave Lindorff, David Swanson, Janine Bandcroft January 17th, 2019

Last month, Philadelphia Judge Leon Tucker ruled, in part, favourably in a two year-old plea by Mumia Abu-Jamal’s legal team. They had argued, a U.S. Supreme Court Justice presiding over a previous appeal should have recused himself.

Abu-Jamal has spent nearly 40 years in prison for the 1981 murder of Philly police officer, Daniel Faulkner; a charge he has always denied. The case has, from the beginning, been politically charged and fraught with procedural irregularities. Further to those, just days after Judge Tucker’s ruling, the Philadelphia District Attorney’s office “discovered” six crates of evidence that has for years, they say, lay hidden in the back of a disused storeroom.

Lawyers and activists are excited now by the possibility those crates may contain material that could see Mumia freed.

Dave Lindorff is a Philadelphia-based investigative journalist and author. The former Philadelphia Enquirer newspaper reporter covered the Abu-Jamal case extensively, and wrote the book, ‘Killing Time: An Investigation into the Death Row Case of Mumia Abu-Jamal. Lindorff is too founder of the multi-award-winning news website, This Can’t Be Happening, where his latest article on the Abu-Jamal case, ‘A Potentially Tectonic Event Shakes up the Mumia Abu-Jamal Case‘ appears.

Dave Lindorff in the first half.

And; does the World really need another celebration of war and warmakers? The good folks over at NATO think so, and they’re busy making preparation for just such an event. April 4th, 2019 marks the 70th anniversary of the multi-nation military alliance. The North Atlantic Treaty Organization has, since its Cold War inception, seen a massive expansion in both its membership and mission statement. Nothing if not resilient, NATO has not only survived, despite losing its raison d’etre rival, the USSR and its Warsaw Pact alliance, but thrived, no longer limiting activities to its titular region but creating “facts on the ground” across the globe.

David Swanson is an author, activist, tireless promoter of pro-peace networks and websites, and co-founder of World Beyond War, an organization making the case for the abolition at last of that ultimate expression of human destructiveness. His book titles include: ‘Curing Exceptionalism’, ‘A Global Security System’, ‘War Is Never Just’, ‘War Is a Lie’, ‘Killing Is Not a Way of Life’, ‘War No More: The Case for Abolition’, and many more.

Swanson is also host of Talk Nation Radio, linked through his website, Let’s Try Democracy, where a recent article dissects the myths and reveals the realities behind the organization that would have your anniversary cheers.

David Swanson and the ‘Top 10 Reasons Not to Love NATO‘ in the second half.

And; Victoria-based activist and long-time Gorilla Radio contributor, Janine Bandcroft will be here at the bottom of the hour with the Left Coast Events Bulletin of some of the good things to be gotten up to in and around our town in the coming week. But first, Dave Lindorff and can the beginning of the end of Mumia Abu-Jamal’s long imprisonment be happening?

Chris Cook hosts Gorilla Radio, airing live every Thursday between 11-Noon Pacific Time. In Victoria at 101.9FM, and on the internet at: http://cfuv.uvic.ca.  He also serves as a contributing editor to the web news site, http://www.pacificfreepress.com. Check out the GR blog at: http://gorillaradioblog.blogspot.ca/

Gorilla Radio with Chris Cook, Elizabeth Vos, William Craddick, Janine Bandcroft January 10, 2019

Fake News and rumours of Fake News continue to abound. Recent leaks detailing a UK government-funded program of media infiltration and propaganda dissemination has put fake news in a whole new context.

Anonymous, the shadowy trans-national association of hackers, has exposed the doings of the Institute for Statecraft and its so-called Integrity Initiative. They reveal “clusters” of politicians, military officials, and think tank academics recruited and retained to further the aims of the Institute and its masters.

Included in those clusters are prominent journalists working for, among others, Britain’s Guardian newspaper, long regarded the standard-bearer for leftist media.

The paper though has seen a curious transformation over the last few years, nowhere more evident than in its unabashedly biased coverage of Venezuela and incommunicado journalist, Julian Assange.

Elizabeth Vos is Co-Founder and Editor in Chief at Disobedient Media, a web news site focusing on the intersection of global politics, media, and technology. Her December expose, ‘The Guardian’s Reputation In Tatters After Forger Revealed To Have Co-Authored Assange Smear‘ is a body-blow to that paper’s already faltering credibility. (Full disclosure: Elizabeth and DM are staunch supporters of Julian Assange and WikiLeaks.)

Elizabeth Vos in the first half.

And; over the weekend cities across France were battlegrounds. For the eighth week in a row the so-called Gilets Jaunes, or Yellow Vest movement, has paralyzed both the country’s avenues and political process, pitting the disgruntled citizenry against a Macron government whose failed economic policies are being attacked by all sides of the political spectrum; or so it would seem. Could it be there’s a more sinister hand behind the protests; and if so, what might be the motive?

William Craddick is co-founder with Elizabeth Vos of Disobedient Media. He’s a graduate of Pepperdine University School of Law, and holds a Bachelor’s in International Relations from Wheaton College. Craddick has written numerous articles related to foreign policy and security, including propaganda operations, political corruption, the “Macron leaks“, and creation of an EU Army.

William Craddick and ‘Is Britain Involved with European “Yellow Vest” Protests?‘ in the second half.

And; Victoria-based activist and long-time Gorilla Radio contributor, Janine Bandcroft will be here at the bottom of the hour with the Left Coast Events Bulletin of some of the good things to be gotten up to in and around our town in the coming week. But first, Elizabeth Vos and following Luke Harding and friends down the Guardian rabbit hole.

Chris Cook hosts Gorilla Radio, airing live every Thursday between 11-Noon Pacific Time. In Victoria at 101.9FM, and on the internet at: http://cfuv.uvic.ca.  He also serves as a contributing editor to the web news site, http://www.pacificfreepress.com. Check out the GR blog at: http://gorillaradioblog.blogspot.ca/