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Truthdigger of the Week: Adrienne Kinne

Posted on May 18, 2008
Adrienne Kinne

Truthdig tips its hat this week to former Army Sgt. Adrienne Kinne, who has defied her one-time higher-ups by speaking out about how military officials knew that a target list in April 2003 contained the name of Baghdad’s Palestine Hotel, which was shelled by a U.S. tank on April 8 even though embedded reporters were staying there. Two journalists were killed in the attack; one of them even filmed his own death.

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Kinne recently talked to “Democracy Now!” host Amy Goodman about the Palestine Hotel incident, describing how both she and one of her superiors, Warrant Officer John Berry, knew from an internal e-mail that the hotel was on the target list. Kinne, who knows Arabic and worked in military intelligence from 1994 to 2004, told Goodman she had approached Berry and said she was concerned that “there are journalists staying at this hotel who think they’re safe, and yet we have this hotel listed as a potential target, and somehow the dots are not being connected here, and shouldn’t we make an effort to make sure that the right people know the situation?”

Unfortunately, according to Kinne, Berry gave an all-too-familiar response, telling her “that it was not my job to analyze ... [that] someone somewhere higher up the chain knew what they were doing.” Shortly thereafter, two cameramen, Taras Protsyuk from Reuters and José Couso from Telecinco, were killed by an American tank, which Couso filmed as it pointed at the hotel and fired the shot that took his life. Couso’s family is still pursuing the case, and Kinne’s account has strengthened its resolve. As it stands, Goodman reports, a Spanish court has brought murder charges against three U.S. military members implicated in the Palestine Hotel attack.

Kinne noted how then-Secretary of State Colin Powell insisted that the hotel “was not attacked during any phase of the aerial campaign”—with emphasis, perhaps, on aerial. She also revealed what she considered to be illegal wiretapping by the military to monitor certain NGOs and described how information from the Iraqi National Congress that later turned out to be false was given high priority in the U.S. government’s chain of command. Accounts like this from the inside may in some ways be hard to hear years after the fact, but they may help others come forward and fill in the crucial information gaps that still exist in the public’s understanding of what brought us to where we are now—and what to do about it.

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Watch Kinne’s interview with Goodman here.

Follow this link for more about Javier Couso, José‘s brother, and his efforts to prosecute those involved in his brother’s death.

In the YouTube clip below, Kinne describes how spying on American citizens went from being an unthinkable concept to a routine practice done “just in case”:




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By BCC Meteorites, June 7, 2008 at 3:42 am Link to this comment

Good. It looks like, and it is good when wrongdoers make any attempt to right past wrongs. I suspect A.K. is trying to clear her conscience. We remember reading a study in medical malpractice where it was found patients simply wanted an apology instead of millions of dollars. The doctors were stumped. “You mean all she wanted was to hear me say I’m sorry”. Unfortunately, we will always find greedy, racist, frauds, to whom it is cheaper to pay millions than to simply apologize. It’s the American way. For the detractors, give her credit, she’s trying to do the right thing. What is she going to gain? A lot of grief but a clear conscience.


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By Richard D Rosenblatt, May 24, 2008 at 3:40 pm Link to this comment
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I have been part of the structure all of my life (82 years) but I finally had to speak out about Iraq and the nature of war both past and present. “War is hell”;
it’s digusting and not for humans unless the real enemy
forces are at the real gate. I have written a novel pointing this out, just as Gone with the Wind did after the Civil War and All Quiet on the Western Front did after WWI.
BLACK GOLD GRAY is at AMAZON and Barnes & Noble and a critic called it “The best war novel of this century”.

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By Marshall, May 21, 2008 at 7:31 pm Link to this comment

I’d have reacted in horror the same way they did Roth - but that doesn’t mean they were purposely targeted.

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By LAroth, May 21, 2008 at 7:53 am Link to this comment
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I wish you could have taken their places. It would be interesting to observe your “emotion-driven-brain” reactions. What would you have done? Nothing? And that makes you . . . what?

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By Marshall, May 20, 2008 at 2:07 pm Link to this comment

Take any large group of people and you’ll find someone who claims the group did bad things.  That doesn’t mean they’re right. She’s provided no supporting evidence, and has offered her only her opinion about their legality.  You correctly point out that she was in the military.  That would also mean that she is not a lawyer.

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By Maani, May 19, 2008 at 9:11 pm Link to this comment


Actually, Sgt. Kinne has a powerful “predecessor” in Lt. Col. Karen Kwiatkowski, one of the first high-level whistleblowers re U.S. criminality in Iraq, and an active and vocal proponent of a new, thorough, non-political investigation into the events of 9/11.


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By Don Stivers, May 19, 2008 at 3:25 pm Link to this comment


The woman was in the military and was there.  Yes!  She is a reactionary because she saw unlawful conduct.  She is now reporting it.  AND sticking her head out.

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By Don Stivers, May 19, 2008 at 3:20 pm Link to this comment

I totally agree!!

Is nobody listening out there?  You columnists.  Should be BIG headlines for you!

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By Bill Blackolive, May 19, 2008 at 12:00 pm Link to this comment
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Non Credo, basically you be correct. What has to be done though is get corporate media into arguing about the expanding scene at Patriotsquestion9/11.

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By Don Stivers, May 19, 2008 at 11:30 am Link to this comment

This is why a person should not be afraid to stick their full name on their posting.  Adrienne Kinne has stood up where the Government can do anything to do harm to her and yet she speaks for Truth.  She is not afraid to speak out against the Creeps we have running our Government.

All of my support go to her and her Brave actions of speaking out.  I hope this lights a fire under those who have the columns to write about the abuses of our own Government.

I congratulate you Adrienne Kinne.  You ARE a TRUE PATRIOT!!!!! Thank You!!!!!

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By dsmith, May 19, 2008 at 3:27 am Link to this comment
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And what military gain do you achieve by having a tank fire into a hotel?

Dear God we become more like the “Kill anything that moves Israelis” everyday.

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By Marshall, May 18, 2008 at 10:45 pm Link to this comment

Adrienne Kinne and her organization carry on the embittered irrationality of the Cindy Shean movement. If this clip is representative of her message, then she’s just another emotion driven scatter brain who thinks she gets to decide what’s legal and what’s not, rather than the courts.

The accompanying text here is so easily dismembered for its lack of critical thinking as to be hardly worth the effort.  It doesn’t even make any claims of criminality - at most, miscommunication, if even that.  Who’s she even blaming here?  Herself for doing nothing?  John Berry?  The “higher ups” for not knowing who was in the hotel?  In other words: where’s the beef?

Truthdig should disassociate itself with flimsy reactionaries like this woman (and Cindy Shean) and concern itself with thoughtful analysis, commentary and opinion.  That’s my advice.

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By yirimyah, May 18, 2008 at 6:42 pm Link to this comment
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The “Javier Cuoso” link comes back to this page.

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By RICHARD D., May 18, 2008 at 2:45 pm Link to this comment
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