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Porkins Policy Radio episode 186 Ken Silverstein on The Intercept, NRA spending scandal, and Venezuela

In the first hour, I went solo and talked about some recent developments in the West African nation of Burkina Faso. I started off with the recent hostage rescue operation by French special forces which freed 4 tourists. I talked about the political instability that Burkina Faso has been facing over the past several years. I also talked about the rumors that the hostages were going to be handed over to the Macina Liberation Front in Mali. I spoke about the rise of jihadi groups across West Africa and how much of it unfolded in 2012 with the ouster of Mali’s president Amadou Toumani Toure. I also discussed the role that France continues to play as a colonial overlord in West Africa. I finished off by looking at a recent attack on a church in northern Burkina Faso and how it might link to gold mining in the country, and how this is exploited by groups like the neocons.

In the second hour the founder of Counterpunch and Washington Babylon, Ken Silverstein, joined me. We started off by talking about Ken’s latest media project WashingtonBabylon.com. Ken talked about the structure of the site and the unique way they are approaching both journalism and political reporting. Later we talked extensively about The Intercept and the myriad problems facing the billionaire-funded outlet. Ken talked about the recent scandal where yet a third whistleblower has been sent to jail after cooperating with The Intercept and Jeremy Scahill. Ken talked about his own time at The Intercept and why he ultimately had to walk away. Ken and I trashed Glenn Greenwald and also talked about the theory that The Intercept is, in fact, an intelligence operation to entrap whistleblowers. Later we talked about some of Ken’s reporting looking at the NRA spending scandal and why Wayne LaPierre paid $14,000 in rent for a summer intern. We finished the conversation by looking at the situation in Venezuela. Ken also teased a bombshell story he is writing on Marco Rubio.

Download episode 186

Show notes:

French special forces rescue hostages in a deadly Burkina Faso raid

French ex-hostages arrive in Burkina Faso capital, pay tribute to soldiers killed

French troops free hostages in Burkina Faso

Macina Liberation Front

The Complex and Growing Threat of Militant Islamist Groups in the Sahel

Burkina Faso: Gunmen Kill Priest, Worshippers in Burkina Faso Church

Burkina Faso church attack: Priest among six killed

Burkina Faso – An Emerging World-Class Gold Province

Nexus Gold Corp

WashingtonBabylon.com

@KenSilverstein1

Where Journalism Goes to Die

The Intercept Is The Surveillance State: How Scahill & Cole Got Played By NSC & NSA

Is The Intercept An Intelligence Operation? An Ongoing Inquiry

EXCLUSIVE: DID THE HEAD OF THE NRA HAVE AN INTIMATE RELATIONSHIP WITH A RUSSIAN SPY AND HAVE HIS GROUP PAY HER APARTMENT RENT?

Why a Coup Is Unlikely in Venezuela

Caracas Chronicles, Part I of an Ongoing Series

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