News Release

* Venezuela * ‘Public Diplomacy’ * ‘Missile Defense’

GREGORY WILPERT
Wilpert is a journalist living in Venezuela and the author of an upcoming book on the Chavez presidency.
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MARK WEISBROT
Co-director of the Center for Economic and Policy Research, Weisbrot is currently in Venezuela. He said today: “Six months ago, when the opposition forces overthrew the democratically elected government of Venezuela and installed the head of the business federation as president, the Bush administration at first welcomed the coup, retreating the next day after it became clear that other countries in the Americas were not going to recognize the illegal government…. This time around, too, neither the White House nor the State Department has indicated that a coup would result in any diplomatic or commercial sanctions against an illegal government.”

* ‘Public Diplomacy’

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NANCY SNOW
The Under Secretary of State for Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs, Charlotte Beers, is giving a repeatedly delayed address today at the National Press Building. Assistant professor in the College of Communications at Cal State Fullerton, Snow is author of Propaganda, Inc. and the forthcoming Information War: American Propaganda, Free Speech and Opinion Control Since 9/11.

* ‘Missile Defense’

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ALICE SLATER
The Bush administration has announced that it is committing to an initial “missile defense” system. President of the Global Resource Action Center for the Environment, Slater said today: “The tests are not hitting their targets, but that doesn’t seem to be dissuading the Pentagon from continuing to spend billions of dollars. What this will do is start an arms race in space. China has been putting forward resolutions at the UN to keep space free of weapons. The whole world votes for it except for the U.S. and Israel. But it is not accurate to call this ‘missile defense’ — it’s an offensive weapons system. The U.S. Space Command talks openly about dominating the world from the ‘high ground’ — that is, through a space-based weapons system as outlined in their ‘Visions for 2020’ report.” For a PDF file of this report, see: www.gsinstitute.org/resources/extras/vision_2020.pdf
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MICHELLE CIARROCCA
Ciarrocca is a research associate at the World Policy Institute and co-author of the report “Axis of Influence: Behind the Bush Administration’s Missile Defense Revival.”
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For more information, contact at the Institute for Public Accuracy:
Sam Husseini, (202) 347-0020; or David Zupan, (541) 484-9167