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by: Stephan Salisbury – truth-out.org
At the height of the Occupy Wall Street evictions, it seemed as though some diminutive version of “shock and awe” had stumbled from Baghdad, Iraq, to Oakland, California. American police forces had been “militarized,” many commentators worried, as though the firepower and callous tactics on display were anomalies, surprises bursting upon us from nowhere.
There should have been no surprise. Those flash grenades exploding in Oakland and the sound cannons on New York’s streets simply opened small windows onto a national policing landscape long in the process of militarization — a bleak domestic no man’s land marked by tanks and drones, robot bomb detectors, grenade launchers, tasers, and most of all, interlinked video surveillance cameras and information databases growing quietly on unobtrusive server farms everywhere.
The ubiquitous fantasy of “homeland security,” pushed hard by the federal government in the wake of 9/11, has been widely embraced by the public. It has also excited intense weapons- and techno-envy among police departments and municipalities vying for the latest in armor and spy equipment.
In such a world, deadly gadgetry is just a grant request away, so why shouldn’t the 14,000 at-risk souls in Scottsbluff, Nebraska, have a closed-circuit-digital-camera-and-monitor system (cost: $180,000, courtesy of the Homeland Security Department) identical to the one up and running in New York’s Times Square?
EXCLUSIVE: Cointelpro Gothic II: Midwestern Police State Paranoia Continues! Winona & Des Moines hubs of spurious “terrorism” & great FBI statistical accomplishments!
BY DAN FEIDT — HongPong
Another level of the seemingly endless, unregulated Midwestern law enforcement campaign against political activists has been revealed in 525 pages obtained from the Department of Justice by Freedom of Information Act requests filed by David Goodner of Des Moines. (FULL PDF 62MB / Scribd.com)
Two related stories emerge: in 2004-2006, federal agents spurred to achieve career-advancing “statistical accomplishments” spied on people the G-Men linked with the CrimeThinc Anarchist publishing label — in Des Moines and Winona, MN anyone linked to anything CrimeThinc is deemed a great target for further snooping. Read the rest of this entry →
The War in Iraq is mostly over. We’re drawing down forces in Afghanistan. Barring an unexpected terrorist attack or another Libya-style troop deployment, Election 2012 will proceed in a world where the War on Terrorism is being waged by intelligence agencies making drone strikes in places like Pakistan, Yemen and Somalia, and one in which we may be taking covert action inside Iran too.
In others words, much of American foreign policy will be a state secret.
Think about what that means for democracy.
The Iraq War was a major campaign issue in 2004 and 2006. President Obama owes his victory in 2008 partly to the fact that he opposed it, persuaded voters he’d exercise better judgment if faced with a “3 a.m. phone call,” and vowed to double down on winning the War in Afghanistan.
Leading neuroscientists believe that the UK Government may be about to sanction the development of nerve agents for British police that would be banned in warfare under an international treaty on chemical weapons.
A high-level group of experts has asked the Government to clarify its position on whether it intends to develop “incapacitating chemical agents” for a range of domestic uses that go beyond the limited use of chemical irritants such as CS gas for riot control.
The experts were commissioned by the Royal Society, the UK’s national academy of sciences, to investigate new developments in neuroscience that could be of use to the military. They concluded that the Government may be preparing to exploit a loophole in the Chemical Weapons Convention allowing the use of incapacitating chemical agents for domestic law enforcement.
The 1993 convention bans the development, stockpiling and use of nerve agents and other toxic chemicals by the military but there is an exemption for certain chemical agents that could be used for “peaceful” domestic purposes such as policing and riot control.
The British Government has traditionally taken the view that only a relatively mild class of irritant chemical agents that affect the eyes and respiratory tissues, such as CS gas, are exempt from the treaty, and then only strictly for use in riot control.
The issue centers on provisions in the National Defense Authorization Act of 2012, signed by President Obama, for the indefinite and rights-free detention of those Washington cites as belligerents, whether American citizens or not.
WND reported when Rep. Daniel P. Gordon Jr. immediately drafted a resolution in the Rhode Island legislature to express opposition to the sections of the NDAA “that suspend habeas corpus and civil liberties.”
Now the Tenth Amendment Center confirms that the resistance to the federal bureaucracy is catching on.
By Kelly O’Brien – from fightbacknews.org
Minneapolis, MN – More than 75 people rallied here, Feb. 3, as a part of the National Day of Protest against the provision of the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) that allows for indefinite detention without trial. The protest occurred outside the Obama campaign headquarters. President Obama signed this unconstitutional bill into law Dec. 31. According to Anh Pham of the Committee to Stop FBI Repression (CSFR), “This law allows the government to continue to oppress anyone who doesn’t agree with them.”
Sam Richards of Occupy Minneapolis stated, “The NDAA of 2012 is the largest assault on our rights since the Patriot Act. Obama ran as a champion of civil liberties. We demand an end to the attack on our civil rights.”
This demand rang clear as activists joined in chants, speeches, guerrilla theater and an occupation of the Obama headquarter building as part of the direct action. The message of the protest was apparent, with signs such as “No war on our rights: No NDAA,” and chants like “Hey Obama, pay attention! We say no to indefinite detention!”
Uploaded by roguemediaChannel on Feb 6, 2012
from — patriot-newswire.com
In an interview with CBS 60 Minutes’ Scott Pelley, Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta revealed more about the secret process the Obama administration uses to kill American citizens suspected of terrorism without trial. According to Panetta, the president himself approves the decision based on recommendations from top national security officials.
“So it’s the requirement of the administration under the current legal understanding that the president has to make that declaration, not you?” Pelley asked. Panetta replied, “That is correct.”
from — endoftheamericandream.com
When you use the Internet in a public place, do you prefer to have as much privacy as possible? Well, that makes you a potential terrorist. According to the FBI, Internet privacy is now considered to be suspicious activity. If you are out in public and you attempt to keep snoopers from peeking at your computer screen, then according to the FBI they should gather as much information about you as they can and they should report you to the authorities immediately. If this seems completely and totally ridiculous to you, then you are not alone. Millions of Americans have become deeply concerned about the constantly expanding definition of “suspicious activity” in the United States. Sadly, the federal government is now engaging in an all-out attempt to have us all spy on one another. All over America, the Department of Homeland Security is running ads promoting the “See Something, Say Something” campaign. They even had 8,000 stadium workersat the Super Bowl this year go through special training on how to spot potential terrorists. So the next time you see a hot dog vendor, keep in mind that he might also be part of a special anti-terrorism task force.
The following are some quotes from a government document entitled “Potential Indicators of Terrorist Activities Related to Internet Café“. In between each quote, I have included some commentary. It is absolutely amazing what the definition of “suspicious activity” now includes….
“Are overly concerned about privacy, attempts to shield the screen from view of others”