May 16 2008

Bill Fletcher on Wright and Obama, Andy Worthington on Guantánamo


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This week on CounterSpin: race, Wright and Barack Obama. You might have been tempted to think that the controversy over Barack Obama and Rev. Jeremiah Wright ended back when Obama gave a long speech on race and his long association with Wright’s church. Or maybe you figured that when Obama gave another set of more forceful comments denouncing Wright, that might be the last we heard of all that. But the discussion of race in the Democratic primaries would suggest that there’s plenty more Rev. Wright chatter to come. Bill Fletcher will join us to share his thoughts about what the Wright controversy meant-and what purpose it seemed to serve for the corporate media. He is the executive editor of The Black Commentator website and is a former president of TransAfrica Forum.

Also this week: Sami al-Haj, the Al Jazeera cameraman recently released after six years in the U.S. prison camp at Guantánamo, is back in his native Sudan. As the only journalist believed held in Guantamo, Al Haj’s story has become well known around the world. It is less well-known in the US-al-Haj’s May 1st release merited just a 72 word squib in the Washington Post, and a short report on page 14 of the New York Times.

Still less attention has been paid to the other Guantánamo detainees who were released with Al Haj. Journalist Andy Worthington will join us to tell their stories. He is the author of “The Guantánamo Files: The Stories of 774 Detainees in America’s Illegal Prison.”