Previous Winners | Sam Adams Awards | Oxford Union





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Published on Mar 13, 2013

Ray McGovern introduces the previous winners of the esteemed Sam Adams Award for celebrated Whistleblowers.
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Ray McGovern introduces the previous winners of the esteemed Sam Adams Award for celebrated Whistleblowers.

Annie Machon, a former MI5 officer, was forced to go into exile and hiding in Europe for many years after blowing the whistle on criminal activities in the organisation

Also featured are Jesselyn Radack, Ray McGovern and Thomas Drake, with a videolink appearance by Julian Assange

Beginning the talk is Annie Machon. Annie Machon tells of the crimes and incompetence committed by MI5 during her time as an intelligence officer.
She says whistle-blowers pay an incredibly high price for the exposure of secrets and crimes within MI5. If you report a crime that has happened within the organisation then the whistle-blower is the one accountable and not the person who committed the crime.

3:45 - Thomas Drake

Thomas Drake begins by defining intelligence and follows this by saying that intelligence without integrity is like an umbrella with hole or the tail wagging the dog -- pointless.

Secrets that are with held from analysts and policy makers affect decisions made in error and only serve to maintain the status quo of current worldviews. Intelligence is sometimes with held in the interest of selfishness rather that in that of the public. It is often skewed in the interest of a desired outcomes to justify actions such as the invasion of Iraq.

8:17 -- Ann Wright was one of only three US State Department officials to resign over the 2003 invasion of Iraq

Ann Wright says that she protests drones strikes and assassination Tuesdays where the president of the united states choses who will live or die, particularity in Pakistan, every Tuesday.

11:15 - Ray McGovern

Ray McGovern makes a speech from his own experience of serving his country for 20+ years and then making a career destroying decision to stand up for national interest. He says even though his career ended he left with dignity, integrity and the respect of his peers and maintains that it was the best decision he has ever made.

15:00 -- Craig Murray

He begins by highlighting that he has walked through hundred of people demonstrating against Julian Assange whereas the night before John Bolton, a war criminal responsible for the deaths of hundreds of thousands of people in Iraq, was speaking at the Union and no one was outside making a stand. His point is that some people have their values seriously messed up.

He goes on to say that we need organisations like WikiLeaks because we can no longer trust governments who bend the truth to achieve their own goals. Wikileaks is necessary for exposing cruel acts governments inflict on other countries and to make people aware that public opinion is controlled by the media.

Filmed on Wednesday 23rd January 2013

The Union is the world's most prestigious debating society, with an unparalleled reputation for bringing international guests and speakers to Oxford. It has been established for 189 years, aiming to promote debate and discussion not just in Oxford University, but across the globe.


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