“Show me somebody who is always smiling, always cheerful, always optimistic, and I will show you somebody who hasn’t the faintest idea what the heck is really going on.” – Mike Royko
Visitors to this website who are unfamiliar with Cointelpro stalking
should read the What is “Gang Stalking?” page for an overview.
Shining a Light on the Cockroaches
While the web traffic is still microscopic by the standards of many blogs, the trend is encouraging – especially for a topic which remains relatively obscure.
Most of the content of this website is an aggregation of published news reports relevant to counterintelligence. Unavoidably, my analysis of the material sometimes involves speculation, but my speculation is informed by personal and professional experience and research.
The positive response I get from readers – and the efforts at intimidation I get from the feds and their minions – suggests that the allegations in this website are mainly or entirely accurate.
In January 2014, one of the U.S. government’s counterintelligence front groups, OSI, threatened me with legal action – and that’s one of the least creepy efforts at intimidation I have encountered. I describe in detail in this site some of the threats I have received.
Although nearly 80 percent of the visitors to this website are from America, on a typical day there is also web traffic from about a dozen other nations. Not surprisingly, a significant number of visits are from readers in Canada and the U.K. – two nations with which the U.S. intelligence community has very close ties and where media reports indicate that organized stalking is used as an extra-judicial weapon against targeted individuals by people with connections to law enforcement, intelligence, and homeland security agencies – just as it
is in the U.S.
Thank you very much to those readers who help me by bringing important news reports to my attention so that I can in turn share them with others.
Please do whatever you can to help expose the illegal use of Stasi-type counterintelligence tactics by U.S. government agencies and corporations.
Mozilla’s Firefox web-browser sometimes clashes with the blog template I use for this website. When visiting Fight Gang Stalking,
you might want to use Google Chrome or Internet Explorer instead.
December 1, 2014
Persuading skeptics about state-sanctioned criminality
Emails I receive via this website from self-identified victims of Cointelpro/MK Ultra-type harassment often include requests for advice about how to persuade friends and relatives that state-sponsored organized stalking is very real – not just a product of paranoia. Inevitably – because of the nature of “Zersetzung” (“gang stalking”) tactics, objective evidence is usually in short supply. Of course, that is also the essential challenge when trying to gain the attention of the news media on this issue, although that problem requires different strategies.
Past crimes – by individuals or government agencies – do not prove allegations of current crimes, but it is impossible to make an informed evaluation of the plausibility of claims without knowing about relevant historical evidence. So part of the answer is to educate people a bit about the history of criminality by U.S. intelligence agencies and their accomplices. There is no shortage of examples (agencies such as the FBI and the CIA have been abusing their powers since their inceptions), but a good place to start is the book Into the Buzzsaw. That critique of the news media includes detailed explanations of government and corporate conspiracies, and – just as importantly – it includes explanations of how the reporting on such behavior is frequently censored by political and corporate pressures.
The book covers a wide range of scandals that proved difficult to expose because of their implications for powerful people, agencies, and corporations. Self-censorship and media manipulation occur regularly with issues such as U.S. war crimes, corporate influence on foreign policy, and the drug war. In particular, I recommend reading the two chapters about the investigation of TWA Flight 800. It is a perfect example – especially for anyone who insists upon seeing more recent cases than Cointelpro and MK Ultra – of how (a) the FBI and the CIA (not just the NSA) lie to the American public to cover up information harmful to the military-industrial complex, and (b) how the corporate news media can be spectacularly incompetent, cowardly, and credulous – if not actually complicit – when dealing with government conspiracies, even when the issue is in the national media spotlight, and involves American fatalities.
Those chapters are written by reputable veteran investigative journalists, and are filled with specific details – including credible eyewitness testimony that was completely at odds with the disinformation peddled by the FBI. Unlike covert operations such as Cointelpro harassment, that case involved an incident with lots of objective evidence, and yet the truth was still, for the most part, buried in the world of tinfoil hat conspiracy theory. Eventually, that whole incident – just like Gary Webb’s reporting on the CIA’s acquiescence in drug smuggling to fund illegal warfare in Central America – will probably be re-visited and exposed.
Unfortunately, the use of “Zersetzung” (a.k.a.“gang stalking”) tactics is infinitely more difficult to prove – which is precisely why the tactics are used. The challenge is compounded by moral and professional weaknesses in the news media. As noted in a Library Journal review of Into the Buzzsaw, corporate self-censorship continues to pose a serious threat to the free flow of information:
“The first edition of this book appeared during the early months of the Bush administration’s war on terror. Since then, the climate for investigative journalism has only become more repressive.”
November 28, 2014
During the seven days that immediately followed the recent shooting at Florida State University, Fight Gang Stalking was visited a total of 2,712 times. Apparently, at least a few people are curious about what the hell is going on in the shadows of the U.S. surveillance state. Always conspicuously absent from the group of people expressing interest in these reported incidents involving claims about organized stalking are the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ), the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). Those agencies have never made any public statement about “gang stalking” – not even to dismiss it as an urban legend. If those three intelligence agencies believe that reports of gang stalking are simply the product of delusional thinking, they should share that view with the public.
In the past 14 months, there have been (at least) three violent incidents involving individuals who claimed to have been systematically harassed by people using similar counterintelligence subversion tactics: the FSU shooting, the stabbing in Canada (see the 17 November post below), and the mass shooting at the Washington Navy Yard. In the latter incident, a dozen people were killed on a U.S. military base in the nation’s capital by an individual with a security clearance.
Websites such as the one you are now reading explicitly promote the analysis that these violent incidents are the direct result of Cointelpro/MK Ultra type operations. If such notions are false, and are contributing to people being seriously wounded and killed, then the DOJ should disabuse people like me of our misconceptions by issuing a public statement to that effect. In addition to the threat to public safety, unanswered allegations that the government is still engaging in the kinds of predatory behavior exposed by the Church Committee in the 1970s undermines belief in the U.S. government’s integrity. Yet the DOJ remains completely silent.
A similar conspicuous silence followed recent reports that fake cell phone towers were discovered in Washington DC. Here is the reported response by the feds about whether they are using those towers to snoop on Americans’ phone calls and text messages without a search warrant:
“The federal government will neither confirm nor deny that they use such towers for law enforcement purposes.”
Anyone who is skeptical about reports by self-proclaimed victims of state-sponsored organized stalking should ask the DOJ what its position is on the issue. I’ll bet you a box of doughnuts that they won’t respond by issuing a public statement.
Corporate news media sources are not much better than the DOJ on the subject of organized stalking. They have no choice but to report the violence, but they have no apparent interest in finding out, for example, what Myron May tried so desperately to expose in Florida last week. Intellectual laziness is as much a factor as institutional cowardice in shaping the news coverage of these events in predictable ways. The political activists who exposed the first version of Cointelpro described why they felt compelled to break into an FBI office and steal the secret documents which proved that the FBI was perpetrating numerous crimes against Americans:
“When you talked to people outside the movement about what the FBI was doing, nobody wanted to believe it.”
Nothing has changed. Intelligence agencies continue to exploit ignorance, cowardice, and laziness to keep the public in the dark, and manipulate the news. Among the most effective methods of deception by intelligence agencies are slandering and framing individuals, and discrediting them by associating them with symptoms of psychiatric disorders. These tactics are perpetually useful because most members of the public never suspect that events might be something other than what they first appear. When trumped-up criminal charges were filed against WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, many credulous people just assumed that the charges were legitimate. People in the intelligence industry, on the other hand, immediately recognized the game, as was revealed when someone leaked an email exchange between two employees at GCHQ (the British equivalent of the NSA). They knew he was being framed, because that is exactly what the governments in the U.S. and the U.K would do to someone who is exposing their war crimes.
Portraying someone as mentally ill is especially easy. If security contractors harass someone using the “no-touch torture” methods associated with organized stalking (what the Stasi called “Zersetzung”), the victim cannot say anything about what is happening without appearing to be paranoid or delusional – which is precisely the objective. Even in the wake of Edward Snowden’s revelations of unconstitutional creepy Big Brother-type domestic spying – and the history of programs such as MK Ultra and Operation Mockingbird, most news reporters – and news consumers – remain almost willfully ignorant about U.S. government criminality. Deceiving the American public about counterintelligence stalking is about as challenging as showing a toddler the tip of your thumb and convincing him that you have snatched his nose.
Psychiatry books do not – unfortunately – include a chapter about counterintelligence tactics. Consequently, most psychiatrists are unlikely to recognize instances of “the Martha Mitchell effect.” On the other hand, a manual about counterintelligence methods would have a big chapter about psychiatry.
November 24, 2014
A targeted individual in Florida shot three possible stalkers
Early Thursday morning at the Florida State University (FSU) library, Myron May, a 31-year-old lawyer and FSU alumnus, shot three people. Based on all the reporting – such as this account by NBC News, it appears that May’s shooting rampage was a response to being intensely harassed in a counterintelligence operation of the sort colloquially known as “gang stalking.” May was fatally shot at the scene by police. One of the persons shot by May was merely grazed by a bullet, and was treated at the scene. Another person, who was shot in the leg, was released from the hospital Friday night. The third person remained in critical condition as of Friday evening.
It is unknown – except to law enforcement and intelligence authorities – whether the persons shot by May were among those complicit in his ongoing harassment. Similarly, it is unknown to the public what May might have done – or been falsely accused of having done – that led to him being targeted for organized stalking. What is clear though, is that he went to some length to ensure that his ordeal of being stalked by counterintelligence perpetrators would be known after his death. Here, for example, is an excerpt from the NBC News report:
Hours before he opened fire at the Florida State University library, lawyer Myron May left a desperate voicemail for an acquaintance with this plea: “I do not want to die in vain.”
The message was part of a flurry of emails, texts and phone calls in which the former prosecutor laid bare his torment: He believed government “stalkers” were harassing him and using a “direct energy weapon” to hurt him. He said that he had sent packages to 10 people that would “expose” what he thought was happening to him.
Unfortunately, May announced that he was sending the information, so the FBI intercepted the packages. As a result, the public might never learn what – if any – useful information May attempted to convey. Keep in mind that the FBI perpetrated – not investigated – the original version of Cointelpro. Also, that agency was responsible for investigating last year’s remarkably similar incident – the mass shooting at the Washington Navy Yard, and that whole suspicious affair remains an information black hole.
Note the way that the news media outlets are handling the issue of Myron May’s mental state. In all of these cases, it is automatically assumed that the claims and actions of the individual involved should be ascribed to delusional thinking. In the navy yard shooting, the individual had been deemed mentally fit by a military physician and held a security clearance. In the FSU shooting, the individual, May, was an attorney who had been described as a friendly, non-violent person. No matter; the standard narrative is adopted. Even the reporters who seek quotes from experts to pad their articles in these cases, simply consult psychiatrists – never persons familiar with topics such as the CIA’s MK Ultra program, or the FBI’s Cointelpro operations.
Remember that the original Cointelpro scandal was not uncovered by journalists (or by government whistle-blowers); it was exposed by citizen activists who broke into an FBI office and seized secret documents, and leaked them to the news media. Similarly, the mainstream press has so far been mostly worthless regarding the increasingly common reports of domestic psychological operations (“psyops”). Most reporters are focused on meeting deadlines for filing articles – not trying to connect the dots of a murky covert program. This is especially true in an era when the U.S. Justice Department is aggressively prosecuting whistleblowers, and spying on the phone records of the Associated Press.
What is needed is an investigative journalist in the mold of Seymour Hersh – someone who is not afraid to get close to a hornet’s nest. We also need an editor who is willing to stick his or her neck out a bit – instead of waiting for the rare Daniel Ellsberg or Edward Snowden to conveniently drop “smoking gun” documents into the media’s lap.
It is no coincidence that accounts of unethical and unconstitutional counterintelligence psyops activities have been emerging during a period of massive expansion of the surveillance state. America is becoming infested with “homeland security” parasites and thugs – both in the U.S. intelligence agencies and in their numerous unregulated crony contractor firms. It is time to expose this rogue industry.
Update – November 24, 2014…
One of the possible stalkers is now paralyzed from the shooting
USA Today reports that one of the three persons shot at FSU on Thursday – 21-year-old Farhan Ahmed – is now paralyzed from the waist down by a bullet injury to his spine. If Ahmed was shot because he was participating in the intense harassment campaign against the shooter, Myron May, then he should share that fact with news reporters. If Ahmed was simply an innocent victim of the rampage which apparently resulted from a psyops game played against May by perpetrators working for a homeland security contractor firm or a U.S. intelligence agency, then those perpetrators (and their bosses) should be prosecuted.
November 17, 2014
A targeted individual in Canada stabbed one of his stalkers
This incident was reported in January of this year, but only recently came to my attention. Apparently, in July of 2013 a man in Manitoba, Canada, stabbed one of the alleged perpetrators of an organized stalking campaign against him that had been going on for years. In January 2014 the Winnipeg Free Press reported that the 56-year-old man who committed the stabbing, Gerald Chudy, stated that his neighbors were “gang stalking” him.
The reporter did not elaborate in the article on the term “gang stalking,” and he did not reply to my email to him about the issue. The article does not mention the name of the man Chudy accused of being a gang stalking perp. Apparently, the man’s injuries were not serious – for better or worse.
November 17, 2014
Miscellaneous news reports
I lack the time currently to add much commentary about these news reports from the past two months, but I wanted to at least share the links…
U.S. Marshals gathering cell phone data from aircraft-based surveillance devices
A good interview with NSA whistleblower William Binney
NSA reform advocate Senator Udall loses re-election bid
Sharon Weinberger joins The Intercept
Weinberger wrote the 2007 cover article in The Washington Post Magazine about organized stalking. Perhaps she will re-visit the subject at The Intercept.
Cops trying to intimidate people who film them
Although he was found not guilty of the trumped-up charges, the judicial system still made an example of Antonio Buehler.
“I don’t feel vindicated, nor do I think I ‘won.’ The cops who committed crimes that night were never tried, arrested, fired, disciplined, or even reprimanded. Instead, Norma and I were charged with a total of six crimes we did not commit, and it took nearly three years to make them disappear. And I still have three more trials coming up for the ‘crime’ of filming the police. The city had eight prosecutors in the courtroom trying this case, and about a dozen police officers were in there to intimidate the jury. When cops and prosecutors are willing to expend such tremendous resources to prosecute a Class C Misdemeanor for political purposes, all Americans should fear their government.”
Feds are secretly spying on the mail of thousands of Americans
A good article about the “Deep State”
“Nigeria on the Potomac”
A good interview about the massive unregulated spy industry pig trough.
Four Blackwater security thugs convicted
The various Blackwater scandals are examples of the corruption among US security contractors. These four perps were convicted for murdering civilians.
As Jeremy Scahill notes though, the rich pigs at the top of this food chain are well-connected and not touched by these investigations and prosecutions.
Citizenfour (a documentary about Edward Snowden) gets good reviews
“It’s a tense and frightening thriller that blends the brisk globe-trotting of the “Bourne” movies with the spooky, atmospheric effects of a Japanese horror film. And it is also a primal political fable for the digital age, a real-time tableau of the confrontation between the individual and the state.”
Kill the Messenger (a film about reporter Gary Webb) gets good reviews
A critical chapter in the history of modern American journalism involved the CIA’s collusion with cocaine traffickers to finance secret illegal warfare in Central America supported by the U.S. government. Reporter Gary Webb exposed the smuggling of cocaine to the US that was occurring with the full knowledge of the CIA – and the associated rapid spread of crack cocaine use in America. For his efforts, he was basically destroyed by the mainstream corporate press, and he committed suicide. Thankfully, a new film about Webb is shining a light on the whole affair.
The Intercept ran an article on Gary Webb recently also. It’s not bad (and there are some good reader comments), but I especially recommend one of the accounts written by Webb himself – such as the chapter of the book about corporate media censorship, Into the Buzzsaw.
ABC Plans Mini-Series on the CIA’s Infamous MK Ultra Program
Fake Cell Phone Towers Discovered
September 21, 2014
I’m pressed for time currently, but I’ll resume blogging as soon as my schedule permits it.
In the meantime, distribute lots of flyers if you can. LOTS of flyers. Blanket your whole neighborhood with them – and a few other neighborhoods to be thorough. Mail them if you can afford the postage, or just deliver them to front porches, place them under windshield wiper blades, etc. Be creative. Mail some to schools, businesses, and churches too. The more the better. Repeat as needed.
America’s Stasi cockroach brigade does not have any good way to suppress the distribution of flyers. Mailing flyers anonymously – and placing them on doorsteps – is perfectly legal (unlike stalking people). It is also simple and cheap. A local print shop or office supply store can print a large batch of such leaflets for a small price. I guarantee that people will notice if numerous leaflets – large or small – begin to appear around their residences, businesses, and schools, which say “Who will be the next target?” on one side and “FightGangStalking.com” on the other side. If you use a red marker pen to put blood-red ink blotches on them, they will be particularly effective.
Also consider ink-stamping dollar bills (and anything else which will be seen by the public).
Let your neighbors know that their country is becoming infested with corrupt cops, corrupt federal agents, and security contractor parasites. It’s time to expose America’s fascist cowards. It’s time to poison their pig trough.
September 19, 2014
The usefulness of ignorance
If your business involved illegal surveillance and harassment of various citizens, your job would be much easier if the population was largely ignorant. The U.S. provides an ideal environment in that respect for the spying-and-lying industry.
Because of their history of acting as rogue entities, the U.S. intelligence agencies have occasionally been referred to collectively as “the fourth branch” of the federal government. Presumably, it is far simpler for that “branch” to conduct its unconstitutional operations if the public is mostly unaware of even the three official branches of the government. A new survey reveals that Americans are indeed just that ignorant. The Annenberg Public Policy Center found that most Americans – 64 percent – cannot even name the three branches of the federal government established by the U.S. Constitution.
September 18, 2014
The watchers don’t like being watched
Videos posted yesterday at The Intercept show an NSA recruiter reacting angrily to being filmed at a jobs fair at the University of New Mexico. A student and a former student confronted the NSA representative on camera about his employer’s unconstitutional mass surveillance of Americans. He was not pleased.
Even more interesting than the video are some of the comments posted below it. Several of them are from apparent targets of Cointelpro stalking. One comment for example, contains specific references to some of the apparent elements of the program – such as Surveillance Role Players. The replies by “a nurse” are also sophisticated comments from someone who is apparently in the know about what is happening.
The counterintelligence rodents will no doubt respond to this kind of exposure by posting disinformation comments on the site. That has already happened in previous comment threads there. Most of those comments take the form of someone who appears to be stupid and paranoid proclaiming to be a victim of gang stalking. But that kind of disinformation effort eventually calls attention to itself – especially at a site like The Intercept, where both the reporters and the readers are more sophisticated than most people about the spying-and-lying industry’s games.
September 16, 2014
Predicting the nature of the collapse
Many columnists write about the dysfunctional nature of our political system, the rise in economic inequality, and the need for reforms, but few seriously question the fundamental assumptions of our nation’s power structure, or explicitly predict its collapse. Journalist Chris Hedges, on the other hand, often writes about the prospects of a revolution, and forcefully advocates civil disobedience to bring it about.
Hedges’ newest column is a good example, and is worth a read. One reason his views are relevant to the topic of this website is that he often discusses the excesses of the police state. He writes with some authority on the subject as well, as he covered East Germany’s Stasi as a reporter. He sometimes compares current U.S. government entities and policies with those of that infamous communist secret police agency.
Another issue on which Hedges has expertise is Palestinian-Israeli relations; he was the Middle East bureau chief for The New York Times. According to Hedges, the recent slaughter of Palestinian civilians by Israel’s military reflects the same kind of political and moral dynamics at play in the U.S.
“The refusal to speak out for the people of Gaza is not tangential to our political life. The pathetic, Stalinist-like plebiscite in the [U.S.] Senate, where all 100 senators trotted out like AIPAC windup dolls to cheer on the Israeli bombing of homes, apartment blocks, schools—where hundreds of terrified families were taking shelter—water treatment plants, power stations, hospitals, and of course boys playing soccer on a beach, exposes the surrender of our political class to cash-rich lobbying groups and corporate power. The people of Gaza are expendable.”
The use of counterintelligence crimes – such as organized stalking – against targeted individuals in the U.S. is also an example of how people with money and power use military, police, and intelligence agencies as their boot boys. Agents, former agents, cops, private investigators, and their various useful idiots function as enforcers for the political class in America – who view those with relatively little power as expendable.
In a speech Hedges gave Saturday in Wisconsin, he discussed what is needed to challenge the supremacy of our corrupt government and its corporate cronies, and he noted that abuse of power in the security sector should be expected:
“Revolt is the only option left. Ruling elites, once the ideas that justify their existence are dead, resort to force. It is their final clutch at power.”
Most importantly, Hedges says that Americans should not expect support from their corrupt political leaders:
“….Do not look to our political mandarins for help, or expect anything but vaudevillian smoke and mirrors from the billions poured into our campaign circus.
….[Americans need to] carry out sustained acts of civil disobedience to overthrow—let me repeat that word for the members of Homeland Security who may be visiting us this afternoon—overthrow the corporate state.”
What that means, specifically for victims of Cointelpro stalking, is that
we need to use disruptive guerrilla tactics – such as distributing large numbers of flyers – which expose corrupt policing in ways that are difficult for officials and the news media to ignore.
Another powerful tactic some people have begun to exploit is using an ink stamp to mark currency. Your message can reach a lot of people that way too.
September 15, 2014
DOJ announces a new snitch program
Today Politico reported that the Justice Department plans to root out
all the potential terrorists in America by implementing a new program of “community-led interventions.” If that sounds like it might lead to Stasi-type witch hunts, don’t worry; Attorney General Eric Holder assures us that this “innovative and aggressive” program will be guided by “democratic values.”
September 14, 2014
On video: individuals learning they are targets of the NSA
A short video posted today at The Intercept shows the CEO and senior engineers of a German communications company reacting to leaked documents from NSA whistle-blower Edward Snowden which show that their company’s IT network has been breached by hackers at the NSA.
The 6-minute video also includes their reactions as they learn that they are among ten individuals in their corporation who were selected as specific targets for NSA surveillance. Sometimes only a video can adequately convey the nature of a crime. This is an example.
September 14, 2014
The NFL’s FBI
Yesterday’s Washington Post featured an interesting article about the security apparatus of the National Football League (NFL). Apparently, the league has a security network which consists mainly of former federal agents.
The NFL’s security is in the news this week because surveillance video was released on Monday related to an assault in February by a former Baltimore Ravens player on his then-fiancee. Former FBI Director Robert S. Mueller has been hired by the legaue to investigate the NFL’s handling of the incident.
According to the Post’s article, the structure – not just the personnel – of the NFL’s security network has an FBI element:
“It’s set up just like the FBI,” said another former NFL team official. “Think of the 32 teams as field offices.”
One of the advantages of hiring former agents for corporate security is their contacts:
“When you walk into the local police department and you’re either former FBI or NYPD,” the former NFL team official said, “it can open doors.”
The article does not allege that there is anything improper about the NFL’s use of former federal agents for its security services, but it does provide a glimpse of the very close connections in America between corporations and U.S. intelligence agencies.
September 13, 2014
Israel’s 1984-style spying is generating internal dissent
A must-read article published yesterday by The Guardian gives a detailed account of how 43 veterans of Unit 8200 – Israel’s version of the NSA – have publicly denounced their nation’s “all-encompassing” program of spying on Palestinians.
Given the close ties between U.S. intelligence agencies and the Israeli government, this story should be of interest to all Americans. Clearly, the spy industries in the U.S. and Israel share the same values. Testimony by former insiders paints an image of a deeply corrupt system that targets all Palestinians – not just terrorism suspects – with highly invasive spying. As with America’s Cointelpro operations (past and present), Israel’s spying is apparently often rooted in political agendas, rather than security concerns:
It is used for political persecution and to create divisions within Palestinian society by recruiting collaborators and driving parts of Palestinian society against itself.
As with the FBI’s goon squads, Israeli intelligence officials instruct their personnel to view all Palestinians as potential blackmail targets:
Personnel were instructed to keep any damaging details of Palestinians’ lives they came across, including information on sexual preferences, infidelities, financial problems or family illnesses that could be “used to extort/blackmail the person and turn them into a collaborator.”
The highly-credible accounts by these Israeli whistle-blowers suggest that Israel’s intelligence agencies – just like their counterparts in the U.S. – are thoroughly infected by a culture of lawlessness:
In their interviews, they described a culture of impunity where soldiers were actively discouraged in training lessons from questioning the legality of orders, and of being deliberately misled by commanders about the circumstances of a case in which one member of their unit refused to cooperate in the bombing of a building with civilians in it in retaliation for an attack in Israel.
They added that there were in effect “no rules” governing which Palestinians could be targeted and that the only restraint on their intelligence gathering in the occupied territories was “resources.”
The nature of the responses – and lack of responses – by America’s political leaders and news editors to these revelations will reveal which individuals have moral credibility on the issue of Israeli-Palestinian relations (and on surveillance policies), and which individuals are simply whores of the Israel lobby and the U.S. intelligence complex.
September 13, 2014
Friction between Congress and “the fourth branch”
For some reason, certain members of the U.S. Senate are not happy about being spied on and lied to by the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA). As we await the release of a redacted version of a classified report from the Senate Intelligence Committee about the CIA’s use of torture, here is what we know: the CIA ran a rendition and interrogation program which involved torture, and its agents destroyed some of the evidence of that torture. Then the CIA got caught spying on the Senate committee that was investigating the CIA’s use of torture. Then the CIA got caught lying about that spying. Then – on Tuesday of this week – senators on the committee asked the head of the CIA to tell them who authorized the spying, and he refused.
Other than that, relations between America’s rogue spy agencies and America’s representatives in Congress are just fine.
September 12, 2014
The Black Asphalt private law enforcement intelligence network
This week the Washington Post published an interesting article about “policing for profit” – a term sometimes used to describe the strategy of exploiting drug war asset forfeiture as a source of government revenue. The article describes a private intelligence network run by a corporation called Black Asphalt, which serves as an information hub for police agencies seeking to cash in on the drug war.
Private quasi-governmental law enforcement entities are inherently dangerous to Americans’ civil liberties. As with the corporate partnerships associated with the federal intelligence community, privatization of local law enforcement creates enormous opportunities for abuses of power. Quite possibly, that phenomenon plays a large role in the organized stalking of individuals under current Cointelpro-type operations (of both the official and unofficial variety).
“For years, [Black Asphalt] received no oversight by government, even though its reports contained law enforcement sensitive information about traffic stops and seizures, along with hunches and personal data about drivers, including Social Security numbers and identifying tattoos.”
September 11, 2014
DHS wants stores to watch customers for signs of terrorist intent
Try not to linger too conspicuously in the Terrorism Supplies aisle at Walmart. You might find yourself on another secret watch list. The Washington Times reports that the Homeland Security Department is instructing stores to watch for behavior that might indicate a shopper is plotting a terrorist attack.
Keep in mind that Russian officials warned the FBI and the CIA that they had concerns about the radicalization of Tamerlan Tsarnaev – the Boston Marathon bombing suspect – and the warning was not heeded. But when some minimum-wage retail clerk encounters a random customer at Costco, he or she will be expected to perform the job of a counterintelligence agent.
America has the worst of both worlds: an incompetent national security infrastructure, and a paranoid snitch culture.
September 7, 2014
DOJ refuses to disclose information about navy yard shooting
As I noted in my August 30 post, a response was overdue for the FOIA request that sought information from the FBI about last year’s mass shooting at the Washington Navy Yard. The original request for information was made in December 2013, and was denied. An appeal was filed, and on Thursday, the Justice Department finally sent a letter denying the appeal.
Language in the DOJ’s denial letter is of the boilerplate variety. The agency contends that the information sought is exempt from disclosure requirements of FOIA because it falls under the category of “records or information compiled for law enforcement purposes the release of which could reasonably be expected to interfere with enforcement proceedings.”
The U.S. government’s position is that the shooting was simply a random act of insanity by a disturbed individual – as opposed to being the result of intense systematic harassment of the shooter, as the shooter himself clearly suggested. Since the shooter, Aaron Alexis, is dead, presumably the only potential “enforcement proceedings” would
be civil litigation related to security issues, such as Alexis’s security clearance, and the management of security at the naval base.
At least one such lawsuit has been filed by the family of one of the shooting victims.
Several critical pieces of information will remain in the dark – at least for now. One is the FBI’s investigation – if any – regarding Alexis’s claims that he was the target of psyops harassment. A closely related question is whether Alexis was, in any sense, a “targeted individual.” Obviously, if he had been the subject of
any kind of investigation and monitoring, that would have huge implications regarding his security clearance. The DOJ’s denial letter only addresses that issue with a standard blanket statement that applies to all FOIA inquiries:
“To the extent that your request seeks access to records that would either confirm or deny an individual’s placement on any government watch list, the FBI properly refused to confirm or deny the existence of any records responsive to your request because the existence of such records is protected from disclosure pursuant to 5 U.S.C. § 552(b)(7)(E). FOIA Exemption 7(E) concerns records or information compiled for law enforcement purposes the release of which would disclose techniques and procedures for law enforcement investigations or prosecutions. This response should not be taken as an indication that records do or do not exist. Rather, this is the standard response made by the FBI.”
The other critical piece of information which remains a secret
is the FBI’s investigation of Alexis’s communications with the organization called Freedom From Covert Harassment & Surveillance (FFCHS). Some news reports about the shooting noted that Alexis had sent three emails to FFCHS prior to the shooting.
FFCHS is ostensibly a gang stalking victims support group, although – as explained in the web page about the organization in this website – it is clearly a disinformation front group. It would be very interesting to read the description of FFCHS that appears in the FBI’s investigative files. No doubt, the DOJ would argue that such information also falls under one or more of the above FOIA exemptions. The only way to contest the claim would be to file a lawsuit.
Muckrock, which tracked the request, now lists its status as “rejected.”
Here is the DOJ’s denial letter: DOJ Denial of Appeal
Here is my complete summary of the news reports on the entire case.
September 5, 2014
Operation Mockingbird is alive and well
In the 1950s and 60s, the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) operated a secret propaganda campaign to control the reporting in the American news media. For Operation Mockingbird, the CIA recruited leading journalists and publishers at major news outlets – sometimes by bribing them. At one point, the agency had approximately 3,000 employees working on its propaganda program.
Current propaganda activities by U.S. intelligence agencies are more subtle, but they are rooted in the same ethos. By appealing to the career interests of certain reporters and publishers, government officials can feed stories to the public – or not – in ways that serve their agendas.
While it is not news that media hacks are often granted access in exchange for favorable reporting, the public does not usually get to see the sausage being made, so to speak. An article published yesterday by Ken Silverstein at The Intercept however, provides a glimpse of the process.
Emails released by the CIA in response to Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests, reveal some interesting exchanges between Ken Dilanian, a Los Angeles Times reporter – now with the Associated Press – and CIA public affairs officers. Apparently Dilanian worked hard to please the agency on which he was “reporting.”
“I’m working on a story about congressional oversight of drone strikes that can present a good opportunity for you guys,” Dilanian wrote in one email to a CIA press officer, explaining that what he intended to report would be “reassuring to the public” about CIA drone strikes. In another, after a series of back-and-forth emails about a pending story on CIA operations in Yemen, he sent a full draft of an unpublished report along with the subject line, “does this look better?”
As Silverstein notes in his article, most of the CIA’s half of the exchanges were redacted from the documents obtained via the FOIA requests. Nevertheless, the article paints a clear picture of the cozy relationship between pseudo-journalists and the spying-and-lying industry.
September 3, 2014
DHS is too busy spying on Americans to keep track of foreigners
This website is filled with news reports showing that America’s security industry has little trouble monitoring – and in many cases, intensely harassing – whistle-blowers, critics of corporations, journalists, and individuals who have simply angered someone who has connections to law enforcement officials. Apparently, our vast security infrastructure is somewhat less competent at managing legitimate national security issues.
ABC News reports: “The Department of Homeland Security has lost track of more than 6,000 foreign nationals who entered the United States on student visas, overstayed their welcome, and essentially vanished.”
September 1, 2014
Law enforcement predators
From the perspective of victims of ongoing Cointelpro-type harassment and stalking, it often seems as if the public has no clue about the depth of corruption in America’s law enforcement industry.
Fortunately for victims of gang stalking, the near-total impunity granted to law enforcement and intelligence agencies by cowardly politicians and the mainstream press is leading to other abuses which do not go unnoticed. The whole nation saw this recently with the events in Ferguson, but reporters who closely follow the police state are calling attention to the government’s war on Americans’ civil rights.
One of those reporters is J.D. Tuccille at Reason. In an article yesterday, he said this about the current state of affairs:
“Modern police forces have become little more than a new
set of predators from which the public needs protection.”
Individuals targeted by covert harassment at the hands of law enforcement personnel should exploit the fact that we currently have a receptive audience for our message. After Edward Snowden’s revelations about the NSA’s spying on all Americans, and after countless reports of unjustified violence by police, the public is much more open to hearing about the re-emergence of Cointelpro operations.
One of the best ways to seize this opportunity is to distribute numerous flyers, as was done in Connecticut earlier this summer. Use of the tactic there generated so much discussion that it prompted TV news reports and newspaper articles.
Make yourself heard. It’s time to put pressure on the cowardly thugs who believe they are exempt from the U.S. Constitution.
August 31, 2014
New York Times to U.S. gov’t: Stop censoring torture evidence
An editorial in the New York Times on Saturday called for the White House to stop censoring photos of torture by the U.S. government.
Most Americans remember the photos that were leaked from the Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq, but are unaware that there are many more photographs whose release has been censored:
…more than 2,000 other photos taken at various American military facilities in Iraq and Afghanistan have remained hidden under a 2009 law. By one account, the images — which officials say are a mix of snapshots by soldiers and photos by military investigators documenting allegations of abuse — are “worse than Abu Ghraib.”
A federal district judge ruled on Wednesday that the U.S. government must show why the photos should not be released.
August 30, 2014
FOIA response on Washington Navy Yard shooting expected soon
Almost a year has passed since the mass shooting at the Washington Navy Yard, in which a dozen people were killed (13 including the shooter), and eight others were wounded. Some of the news coverage of the shooting took note of public speculation that the shooter might have been the target of a “gang stalking”/MK Ultra-type operation.
Aaron Alexis, the shooter, had claimed to have been stalked by multiple perpetrators, and had reported that he was the victim of electronic harassment and noise harassment tactics of the sort often described by other individuals targeted in counterintelligence operations.
One of the many interesting facts reported about the case was that Alexis had sent three emails to the group called Freedom From Covert Harassment & Surveillance (FFCHS), which is ostensibly a gang stalking victims support group, although – as explained in the web page about the organization in this website – is actually a disinformation front group.
In December 2013, a citizen filed a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request for FBI files “referencing the Freedom from Covert Harassment and Surveillance (FFCHS) organization in regards to the well publicized shooting investigation…”
The FBI rejected the request later that month, claiming that the information was exempt from disclosure requirements on the grounds that it was part of an investigative file.
In January, the person requesting the information filed an appeal, noting that the president of FFCHS, Derrick Robinson, had already revealed information about the matter by publishing an FFCHS newsletter in which he stated that he had been interviewed by two FBI agents concerning the case.
In July, the Office of Information Policy (OIP) at the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) announced that a response would be issued “later this summer.” Yesterday the OIP representative stated “I would anticipate that OIP will issue a response sometime next month.”
Incidentally, the DOJ is not the only agency dragging its feet regarding FOIA requests for information about the navy yard shooting. NBC News reporter Scott MacFarlane has made multiple FOIA requests to the U.S. Navy’s FOIA office about the incident, and has received no cooperation. In June, Investigative Reporters and Editors (IRE) named the U.S. Navy’s FOIA office as one of the three winners of the 2014 Golden Padlock Award – which celebrates “the most secretive government agency or individual in the U.S.” The nomination was made “for blocking access to records” about the navy yard shooting.
All of the correspondence regarding the FOIA request about FFCHS can be seen here.
A summary of the whole navy yard shooting case – including links to the most interesting news reports – is posted here on the What is “Gang Stalking?” page of this website.
August 27, 2014
America’s funniest inmate
One of the funniest writers in America today is an inmate at the federal detention facility in Seagoville, Texas. Barrett Brown – a political activist and journalist – has been incarcerated for the past two years on charges related to his role in exposing information about intelligence-security firms.
In 2010, Brown began serving as sort of an unofficial spokesman for the Anonymous movement. In 2011, when hackers obtained internal emails from the intelligence firms HB Gary and Stratfor, Brown organized an effort to sort and analyze the information that had been leaked.
The emails gave a glimpse of the slimy ecosystem of mercenary spooks performing counterintelligence dirty work for powerful corporate clients, such as Bank of America and the Chamber of Commerce. One example was a plot to discredit the journalist Glenn Greenwald by spreading lies.
Apparently, the DOJ and the FBI took a dim view of the efforts to expose their corporate brethren in the spying-and-lying business. One of the hackers, Jeremy Hammond, is currently serving a 10-year prison term for his role. Barrett Brown’s sentencing is scheduled for October 6th.
Probably the best report on the whole interesting affair is still this June 2013 article in the Nation by Peter Ludlow. Brown’s case has important implications about the creepy – and sometimes illegal – business of counterintelligence operations in the U.S., as well as important implications about the freedom of the press.
In addition to his contributions to journalism, Barrett Brown happens to be one of the best humorists in America. He has written a dozen essays while behind bars so far – mostly about his experiences in jail. Every one of them is worth reading, and they are frequently laugh-out-loud funny. You can view them all here.
August 25, 2014
Ralph Nader on corporate espionage
In a column today in CounterPunch, Ralph Nader calls attention to the fact that U.S. corporations are increasingly spying on non-profit organizations and on other corporations – “sometimes with the help of former NSA and FBI employees.”
Covert operations by American corporations have received more attention in the past year or so. One source of the attention was the publication last year of a report on the subject, called Spooky Business,
a report which Nader also mentions.
Two of the important points raised by Ralph Nader’s column are the failure of the mainstream news media to report on this trend, and the impunity of the corporate perpetrators:
“Here’s a dirty little secret you won’t see in the daily papers: corporations conduct espionage against US nonprofit organizations without fear of being brought to justice.
Yes, that means using a great array of spycraft and snoopery, including planned electronic surveillance, wiretapping, information warfare, infiltration, dumpster diving and so much more.”
Nader speaks with more than a little credibility on the subject of corporate spying and counterintelligence operations. The November-December 2005 issue of Legal Affairs described what General Motors tried to do to Nader in 1965 while he was working to expose that corporation’s negligence:
“GM hired a detective to investigate Nader, tapping his phones and
even hiring prostitutes in an attempt to trap him in a compromising
situation. Nader sued for invasion of privacy, and an opinion by the
New York Court of Appeals extended the reach of tort law to cover
‘overzealous surveillance.’ GM eventually settled, and Nader said he
used the proceeds, some $290,000, to start the pro-consumer Center
for Study of Responsive Law.”
August 23, 2014
America’s police and school officials explore new levels of idiocy
Police officers and school administrators in Summerville, South Carolina, arrested and suspended a 16-year-old student for writing a story – as part of a school assignment – in which he shot a dinosaur. Making a reference to a gun is forbidden in Police State America.
Apparently, neither the cops nor the school officials were bright enough to perceive that the dinosaur element of the story was an indication that the account was fictional.
No one should be surprised that Stasi-type harassment of individuals by power-drunk law enforcement personnel is happening in America. Our education system and our law enforcement system are both infested with imbeciles.
August 21, 2014
Lessons from Ferguson
I have refrained from posting news and commentary here about the killing and protests in Ferguson, Missouri. Events there have been given the wide media coverage they deserve, and I do not have much to add to that discussion. Fortunately, actions by the police there seem to have awakened many people to the disturbing militarization of American law enforcement.
My only disappointment is that most of the reportage and analysis fails to note that the overt militarized policing is part of a larger trend which also includes federal and local spying. As documented throughout this website, the practices include illegal counterintelligence operations, such as organized stalking.
When law enforcement agencies use military hardware and tactics, the police state nature of the government is on full display. As abhorrent
as that is, at least the public can see exactly what is happening, and perhaps push back politically. More dangerous is the insidious use of illegal covert tactics, such as spying and stalking.
John Whitehead at the Rutherford Institute understands America’s ongoing mutation into a police state and writes about it regularly. His column yesterday makes a number of excellent points – one of which
is that the militarization of America’s police forces is being pushed by multiple federal departments and agencies:
Having spent more than half a century exporting war to foreign lands, profiting from war, and creating a national economy seemingly dependent on the spoils of war, we failed to protest when the war hawks turned their profit-driven appetites on us, bringing home the spoils of war—the military tanks, grenade launchers, Kevlar helmets, assault rifles, gas masks, ammunition, battering rams, night vision binoculars, etc.—to be distributed for free to local police agencies and used to secure the homeland against “we the people.”
It’s not just the Defense Department that is passing out free military equipment to local police. Since the early 1990s, the Justice Department has worked with the Pentagon to fund military technology for police departments. And then there are the billions of dollars’ worth of federal grants distributed by the Department of Homeland Security, enabling police departments to go on a veritable buying spree for highly questionable military-grade supplies better suited to the battlefield.
Is it any wonder that we now find ourselves in the midst of a war zone?
We live in a state of undeclared martial law. We have become the enemy.
August 19, 2014
Former high-level NSA official on the actual priorities of the NSA
William Binney, the technical chief of the NSA who became a whistle-blower, was interviewed today by Deutsche Welle, and he asserted that the agency is more concerned with expanding its budget and power, than with national security.
“…the slow process, starting in 80s and going into the 90s, was seeing the focus more on acquiring money to get contracts to build up the empire, as opposed to actually doing the mission.”
Binney also said that the federal government is trampling on the U.S. Constitution by secretly expanding its powers:
“These people subverted [the NSA’s programs]. They corrupted it to violate the law and the constitution. The design I did followed all that … and I was open with Congress about what I was doing. … These cowards downtown in DC are changing our constitution – they’re scrapping the First, Fourth, and Fifth Amendments primarily. If you want to change the constitution, there’s a process to do that. That process means putting a proposal in Congress, get Congress to pass it and then you pass it around all the states, and if 75 percent of the states ratify it, then it’s a Constitutional Amendment. That’s the process. These cowards are doing it all in secret.”
When Binney testified before Germany’s parliament last month, he said that the NSA seeks “total information control” over American citizens and has a “totalitarian mentality.”
August 13, 2014
Senators try to rein in a rogue agency
America’s secret police agency, the FBI, has a long history of lawlessness and deception. U.S. Senators Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) and Ron Wyden (D-Oregon) are attempting to rein it in a bit. They want to ensure that whistle-blowers in the FBI are protected from the kind of retaliation for which the agency is known.
So far, the Justice Department (which created the FBI) has been uncooperative. Yesterday the senators wrote a letter to President Obama about that, which you can read here.
August 12, 2014
A target of the Stasi describes that infamous secret police agency
A reader of Fight Gang Stalking brought this to my attention today.
In this 15-minute TED speech given in Berlin in June, Hubertus Knabe,
a German historian who was a victim of the Stasi (he was under surveillance for smuggling banned books), describes the infamous secret police agency, and its system of Zersetzung – the tactics of which were virtually identical to “gang stalking.”
Here is the description which accompanies the video:
Tour the deep dark world of the East German state security agency known as Stasi. Uniquely powerful at spying on its citizens, until the
fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989 the Stasi masterminded a system of surveillance and psychological pressure that kept the country under control for decades. Hubertus Knabe studies the Stasi — and was spied on by them. He shares stunning details from the fall of a surveillance state, and shows how easy it was for neighbor to turn on neighbor.
Here is a transcript of the speech posted at the TED website.
That site shows that the video has already been viewed more than 278,000 times.
August 10, 2014
The benefits of being a member of a police gang
On Friday, the excellent Police State USA website featured an article about a cop in Oakland, California who has been rewarded for being an enforcer for the one percent.
At an “Occupy Oakland” rally in October 2011, Iraq War veteran Scott Olsen had his skull fractured by a metal tear gas canister launched by an unidentified police officer. When several bystanders gathered to aid the wounded man, Oakland P.D. Officer and SWAT team member Robert Roche threw a flashbang grenade near Olsen’s head and drove off those who were trying to assist. Olsen sustained brain damage from the incident.
Roche has killed three people so far while serving as an officer with Oakland P.D. Those killings were deemed to be justified by the police department, despite the fact that one resulted in a half-million dollar settlement.
The injuries to Scott Olsen resulted in a $4.5 million settlement. The taxpayers of Oakland were not done paying though. Officer Roche was suspended for 22 months after the incident, but he was paid for that entire vacation. He has now returned to work.
“An officer who violently attacked a group of civilians — including an incapacitated man bleeding from a head injury and the people who tried to help him — has been reinstated to the department with back pay for the nearly 3 years of missed work.”
August 7, 2014
CIA helped kidnap a family as a favor to Muammar Qaddafi
An article published yesterday by Gawker describes how the CIA and its British counterpart MI6 participated in the kidnapping – “extraordinary rendition” if you prefer the U.S. government’s Orwellian euphemism – of a family in Hong Kong in 2004.
The family included a 12-year-old girl – who is now 23, and has written about the ordeal. She and her two brothers, then ages 9 and 11, and their parents, were handed over to the Libyan dictator Muammar Qaddafi, who was hunting down opponents of his dictatorship.
The woman’s story is supported by documents discovered by Human Rights Watch after Qaddafi’s regime collapsed.
As Conor Friedersdorf at The Atlantic notes today in his article about the incident, the CIA is currently being permitted by President Obama to censor the U.S. Senate report about its use of torture. The agency’s involvement in the kidnapping of children for dictators gives you a clue about the kind of things U.S. intelligence agencies do not want Americans to know about.
August 5, 2014
NYPD stalked and arrested the man who filmed police homicide
Yesterday a blog associated with the ACLU of Massachusetts noted that the New York Police Department spied on the man who filmed the killing of Eric Garner last month.
The killing received national media attention. Garner died after being wrestled to the ground when police were attempting to take him into custody for selling illegal cigarettes. Last week a medical examiner ruled that Eric Garner’s chokehold death at the hands of NYPD cops on 17 July was a homicide.
In a remarkable coincidence, the person who inconveniently filmed the cops murdering Garner has been arrested.
“Now the NYPD is making 22 year-old Ramsey Orta’s life a living hell. His wife says Orta, who filmed Garner’s tragic death, has been stalked by the NYPD for weeks now. On Saturday, officers arrested him on charges she says are bogus.”
August 4, 2014
Fight Gang Stalking appears in Omaha crime report
A series of “criminal mischief” incidents in Omaha in recent weeks are the subject of property crime reports with the Omaha Police Department. At least one of the reports mentions a sticker that says “FightGangStalking.com”
I have not seen the reports themselves, but they appear to document allegations of minor acts of vandalism.
Regardless of the particular nature of the incidents, it is worth noting that this website – and the illegal policing tactics it reveals – have been getting more exposure recently as individuals targeted by organized stalking are fighting back.
July 25, 2014
Phase 2 is Under Way
A famous episode of South Park featured a group of gnomes whose business plan consisted of three phases – the second of which was completely undefined. Dismantling the counterintelligence stalking operations of America’s Stasi can also be viewed as a three-stage plan, although without that defect.
The first phase for victims of organized stalking was to gather the basic information available about the current version of Cointelpro. This website represents my best effort at that – an effort which has been aided by the generous and helpful support of several other individuals who are also being stalked and harassed by corrupt cops and private security contractors.
The second phase – unlike that of South Park’s gnomes – is very specific. Individuals who are being targeted by the Stasi rodent brigade and its various minions need to expose what is happening.
Organized stalking (“Cointelpro Version 2.0”) involves a variety of illegal and unethical tactics. The perpetrators – just like J. Edgar Hoover’s goons – need to keep their crimes under the radar. Most Americans would not approve of unconstitutional extrajudicial punishment of the sort that was used by communist East Germany’s Stasi. Therefore, victims must expose the whole business to the public.
Phase 3 (which will occur over time and across the nation) will be the reaction of the public, the news media, and the political establishment – locally and on a national level – to learning that the public and private elements of America’s law enforcement and security industry are more corrupt than is widely believed even in the post-Edward Snowden era.
That reaction is impossible to predict. Revelations in the 1970s about the FBI’s counterintelligence crimes led to the U.S. Senate’s famous Church Committee investigations and reforms. Already there have been numerous calls for another Church Committee – in response to developments such as the NSA scandal and the FBI’s efforts to intimidate political movements such as Occupy Wall Street.
The best way for targeted individuals to throw a wrench into the Stasi machine is by distributing and posting numerous letters, flyers, and stickers in ways that will get noticed. That process – “Phase 2” – has already begun. TV and newspaper reports which I posted below (July 4) from Connecticut showed that these tactics can stir up real trouble for the perps.
I received an email today from someone who reported finding a notice about organized stalking posted on the towel dispenser in his or her unidentified establishment. This photograph was attached.
Click on image to enlarge.
I encourage efforts to spread information about organized stalking crimes. In fact, I devote an entire page of this website to that topic – “Tactics for Fighting Back.” Specifically, I advocate using tactics which will not be construed as vandalism, although I lack the legal expertise to say precisely which methods might be deemed objectionable.
Some efforts probably fall into a legal grey area, and call for a judgment to be made. My view of the moral – if not legal – context for such judgments is this: many of the crimes perpetrated against targeted individuals by corrupt police officers, security corporation mercenaries, and brown-nosed vigilante volunteers as part of organized stalking are very serious. By comparison, any legal transgressions associated with exposing those crimes are probably trivial.
It is generally a violation of local ordinances to make loud noises late at night. On the other hand, a rape victim will probably not be prosecuted for blowing a whistle to attract attention.
Americans are increasingly concerned that their country is contaminated by corruption in its government agencies and contractor corporations. Gallup polling in 2013 found that 79 percent of U.S. residents believed that corruption was widespread throughout the government in America.
You can help fight back by exposing what is happening. If you are aware of any local examples of Cointelpro-type activities by law enforcement officers and security contractors (slander, harassment, illegal spying, and such directed at targeted individuals), you should report that to a media source which can investigate it.
If you are an employee of a local or federal law enforcement agency or security contractor firm, and you want to expose tactics which are clear violations of the U.S. Constitution and American values, you can do so anonymously by means of the SecureDrop server at The Intercept.
July 23, 2014
The Intercept posts report on blacklisting
Today The Intercept published a document from the National Counterterrorism Center which contains “the government’s secret rules for putting individuals on its main terrorist database…”
The Obama administration has quietly approved a substantial expansion of the terrorist watchlist system, authorizing a secret process that requires neither “concrete facts” nor “irrefutable evidence” to designate an American or foreigner as a terrorist…
The fact that names are routinely added and removed from the watch-list – which is officially known as the “Terrorist Screening Database” – combined with the secrecy which surrounds the list, make it difficult to know how many people it includes, but apparently the list is growing rapidly. An article in the New York Times in December 2013 reported that at least 700,000 people were on the watch-list, but an Associated Press report last week stated that official numbers revealed in a lawsuit showed that “more than 1.5 million [names were] added in the last five years.”
In a video interview with the Huffington Post, Intercept journalist Jeremy Scahill said this:
“…[The] system makes a mockery of the idea of due process,” [and the public has a right to know about] “what amounts to a shadow legal system.”
July 19, 2014
Job Advertisements for Domestic Spies?
An interesting element of America’s workforce never appears on the radar of the mainstream news media. This is so despite the constant presence of job announcements posted on the websites of defense/security contractors. It is the job of “Surveillance Role Player.”
If you perform a Google search for jobs in this field, the results will always include active listings. For example, here are some of the top results from a search I performed this week:
Click on image to enlarge.
Note that two of the firms listed are the two largest defense contractors in the world: Lockheed Martin Corporation and BAE Systems. Many small intelligence-security firms also employ surveillance role players though. Copies of several of their job listings appear on the What is “Gang Stalking?” page of this website.
The content of the job ads does not vary much; each listing indicates that the unspecified work involves human intelligence operations (as distinguished from signals intelligence) within the U.S., and that applicants must have counterintelligence training and active secret clearances.
In at least some cases, the client for the Surveillance Role Player (SRP) contractors is the Department of Defense. Often though, the job announcements do not indicate which U.S. government department or agency is the client. It seems likely that some of the contracts would be with the Department of Homeland Security.
Here is an example of one of the current job listings, on which I have highlighted several sections.
Click on image to enlarge.
Here is the link to the job listing at BAE Systems’ website.
It is possible that SRPs are used for a variety of positions. For example, one job could be to simulate the role of terrorists and others in various security drills.
Another role might or might not be to participate in the counterintelligence stalking of targeted individuals. In the absence of reporting on either the nature of SRPs or the nature of counterintelligence stalking, it is at least worth considering that the two phenomena might be connected.
Some ads for SRPs list a college degree among the qualifications, but many – such as the one above – require only a high school diploma. This means that former enlisted military personnel with counterintelligence (CI) training can easily make some good money relative to their education level as SRPs – possibly by harassing and spying on their fellow citizens. That would be tempting for a certain type of person during any period, but especially in today’s relatively weak job market.
The opportunity would be especially appealing to anyone whose marketable job skills are limited. A CI agent’s job training emphasizes things such as lying convincingly. That kind of skill set is not always in big demand outside of fields such as used-car sales and politics.
In the absence of leaked documents and media reports about this element of the CI industry, one can only speculate about its possible connection to the numerous reports of organized stalking in the past decade, but there are some obvious potential links.
Secret clearances would perfectly explain how “Cointelpro Version 2.0” (aka “gang stalking”) remains off of the public’s radar. Anyone whose job involves a security clearance has a powerful legal incentive to keep silent about the morally and constitutionally questionable aspects of his or her work.
Also, members of the intelligence community – including contractors – are exempt from the Whistleblower Protection Act. So even if an intelligence-security contractor firm were to mistakenly hire someone who has moral integrity, that employee would still be reluctant to expose misconduct. Revealing secret practices – even practices which are legally dubious – would involve a high risk of serious legal trouble.
Another aspect of the Surveillance Role Player job which makes it a plausible explanation for how organized stalking is perpetrated is the fact that the position is relatively low on the food chain. If organized stalking is widespread – as anecdotal and media reports seem to suggest – the street-level work is certainly not being performed (in most cases) by FBI agents. Victims of organized stalking seem to be rather ordinary individuals who are not connected to criminal or terrorist organizations. In many cases, targets seem to have no idea how they came to be targeted. Some of them – perhaps most – might have simply crossed someone with connections to the law enforcement industry.
Such targeted persons do not have the resources and skills that would require serious “tradecraft” on the part of the perpetrators. Any brown-noser who can follow orders and keep a secret could perform this level of dirty work. SRPs would seem to fit the bill.
All of the SRP job announcements I have seen state that one element of the job is training others. That too is consistent with observable activities associated with organized stalking.
Acts of harassment done for psychological operations purposes are often perpetrated by someone having only a single momentary interaction with the target. For example, someone unknown to the victim makes some particular comment or performs some act of rudeness, or simply glares at the victim. Such persons are probably ignorant of why the victim is supposedly even being targeted.
Presumably, surveillance role players orchestrate and delegate those minor acts of “no-touch torture” which collectively make up what the Stasi referred to as “zersetzung” – the process of systematically degrading the target’s morale.
For any readers not familiar with the particular tactics and strategies of the infamous communist secret police agency – which I discuss in detail on the What is “Gang Stalking?” page of this website – the intended effects of zersetzung were to blacklist anyone who dissented from the government’s priorities, and to perpetrate psychological terrorism against the dissenters so that no one would dare to challenge the supremacy of the political elite.
Many SRP job ads – such as the one below – indicate that the work is part-time. That would make sense for this type of work for several reasons. For one thing, a part-time job would be easier to conceal from the public. Also, it is possible that harassing people full-time might be a bit demoralizing for all but the most purely sadistic CI agents. Some cops frequently behave as bullies, but few people could spend all 40 hours of their work week perpetrating acts of harassment.
Of course, an additional practical reason for restricting employees to part-time status is that it reduces or eliminates the employers’ obligation to provide benefits for them.
Note also that the job ad below states that one element of the work is to “coordinate with local law enforcement.” If SRPs are stalking people, they would inevitably need to sometimes coordinate their activities with police. Quite possibly, Law Enforcement Intelligence Units (LEIUs) could be involved in some ways. As explained in detail in the section of this website about “red squads,” LEIUs have a long history in the U.S. of functioning as political enforcement agencies.
Click on image to enlarge.
Admittedly, any connection between Surveillance Role Players and Cointelpro stalking is purely speculative, but Americans should at least be curious why their government is constantly hiring people with counterintelligence training and secret clearances for unspecified activities within the U.S.
Journalists especially ought to investigate this mystery – if only out of professional curiosity.
July 18, 2014
Comparisons of the federal government to the Stasi
Although the leaders of America’s two major political parties are almost equally enthusiastic in their unconditional support of U.S. intelligence agencies, law enforcement agencies, and the military-industrial complex, a very slight nod probably goes to the GOP in that category. Its politicians and pundits are a bit more open about their embrace of domestic spying and their deference to military and law enforcement officials.
It is therefore noteworthy that some of the criticisms of Big Brother-style governance are coming from members of the Republicans’ own tribe.
When critics compare America’s current government to the secret police agency which terrorized communist East Germany, a common reaction by the U.S. government’s apologists is to claim that the analogy is hyperbolic and that the critics are paranoid. A full analysis of the comparison requires a review of the kinds of news reports found throughout this website, but a quick indication of the plausibility of the claim is that it is now sometimes made by former high-level Republican officials.
One of those officials is Bruce Fein, who was U.S. Deputy Attorney General in the Reagan administration. In 2009 Fein advised Congress that the national intelligence-gathering system of regional data fusion centers should be abandoned. He compared the system to those operated by the Soviet Union’s KGB and East Germany’s Stasi.
Another critic of the police state nature of U.S. policies – foreign and domestic – was also a member of the Reagan administration: Paul Craig Roberts. The column last week by the former Assistant Secretary of the Treasury gives a sense of the visceral anger building in America over a government that is drunk with power.
“Homeland Security is an illegal and unconstitutional force directed at the American people.”
“….Washington reeks of evil. And the world is beginning to realize it.”
July 17, 2014
An insider’s glimpse of the U.S. spy business’s porn club
In a new video interview with the Guardian, NSA whistle-blower Edward Snowden explains that many NSA employees regard their access to the nude photos they intercept while monitoring the flow of Americans’ data as being a job perk, and they pass such photos around the office.
That kind of voyeurism is arguably less serious than some of the other threats posed by having rogue intelligence agencies preying on Americans – such as the danger of political blackmail, but it does give a sense of the creepiness of the Big Brother approach to government, and the attitudes and character of the rodents who operate the machine.
The 14-minute interview is worth watching; it shows why so many in Washington tried so hard – unsuccessfully – to discredit Snowden. He has the complete skill set needed to expose government corruption: a deep knowledge of the intelligence business and information technology, an understanding of the dynamics of political power, and a sophisticated awareness of the nature of the news media.
Update – July 18, 2014….
NSA offers its lame spin on Snowden’s allegations
Mike Masnick at Techdirt commented today on the NSA’s boilerplate response to Edward Snowden’s interview, and noted that the agency’s claim of “zero tolerance” for non-professional behavior is rendered meaningless by a history of similar abuses, and a failure to audit its employees’ activities.
Masnick says what everyone should be considering:
“…it makes you wonder just how much abuse is going on that the NSA has no idea about — potentially for things even worse than listening in on phone sex or passing nudie pics around the office.”
July 16, 2014
Sweden’s arrest warrant for Julian Assange will remain in place
WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange will have to remain in Ecuador’s London embassy for now. Today a Swedish judge ruled to uphold Sweden’s arrest warrant against him. For two years, Assange has been stuck in the embassy of Ecuador – which has granted him diplomatic immunity.
Assange faces what everyone knows are trumped-up charges in Sweden, but more seriously he faces the potential that he could be extradited from Sweden to the U.S. if he is charged in connection with WikiLeaks’ publication of leaked U.S. diplomatic documents.
You can see why Assange and his legal defense team have concerns about what might happen to him. Here is a 7-minute video montage of various political hacks and media hacks calling for Assange to be murdered:
A few years ago, The Washington Times published a column which explicitly called for Assange to be assassinated.
U.S. intelligence agencies, law enforcement agencies, military leaders, politicians, and their apologists in the press really do not like having their lies and crimes exposed. A quick review of just a couple of examples of the kinds of things WikiLeaks exposed which generated all the hatred toward Assange:
When a U.S. cruise missile struck a village in Yemen in December 2009 killing 41 people – including 14 women and 21 children – the U.S. government and the Yemeni government conspired to lie about the incident, saying that the Yemeni government had launched the attack rather than the U.S., and that the victims were members of an al-Qaeda training camp.
During an incident in 2006, U.S. troops in Iraq executed at least 10 Iraqi civilians, including a woman in her 70s and a 5-month-old, then called in an airstrike to destroy the evidence.
“The most transparent administration in history”™ does not care for that kind of publicity.
July 15, 2014
Lessons from the destruction of Aaron Swartz
An article about Aaron Swartz by Matt Stoller that was published last week on Vice deserves to be noticed. The piece is one of the best I have seen about Swartz – who was driven to commit suicide last year by what was clearly an excessive prosecution.
Stoller – who knew Swartz – does a great job highlighting the most disturbing aspects of the case, which range from the values of American capitalism to the opportunistic and sociopathic tendencies of the government’s enforcers.
July 14, 2014
Corrupt police officers and corrupt corporations
A shoplifting incident in Virginia illustrates the deep corruption in America’s law enforcement industry – and the collusion of corporations with corrupt cops.
As the Washington Post reported on Saturday, when a police officer was caught shoplifting at a Target store in Leesburg, Virginia in May, the incident was handled in an interesting way. The police officer – who has not been charged, even though his crime was captured on video – was allowed to quietly retire from the police department, and the store security officer who reported the crime was fired.
As the Post notes, the security officer – who had been working at Target for 8 years – is a married father of two, and his wife is pregnant with their third child. His unemployment is apparently the collateral damage from a move made to ensure that the police remain above the law. One presumes that Target has a “special” relationship with the police industry, and that played a factor.
Additional reporting by the Post seems to confirm this:
“Target sponsored National Police Week in the District this year and contracts with the Minneapolis Police Department to assist with surveillance video analysis.”
Federal and local law enforcement agencies in America have a very close relationship with corporations and the political class. Whenever that partnership decides it is convenient to target someone (excuse the pun), it usually happens with impunity. This case might ultimately be an exception to that rule, because it is getting some national attention.
Tom Jackman, the Washington Post’s reporter, has vowed to pursue this story.
July 13, 2014
America’s Undeclared War
Our government loves perpetual wars, such as “the war on drugs” and “the war on terrorism.” Perhaps it is time for our government to formally declare a perpetual war on dogs.
The government’s enforcers are already waging the war; it should at least be officially recognized.
July 12, 2014
DOJ will not investigate allegations of CIA’s spying on Senate
On Thursday, the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) issued a short statement regarding allegations made in March that the CIA had spied on the very people responsible for its oversight – the U.S. Senate Intelligence Committee:
“The department carefully reviewed the matters referred to us and did not find sufficient evidence to warrant a criminal investigation.”
At the time of the incident, the Senate committee was investigating the CIA’s use of torture for interrogations. As the New York Times reported, the committee’s report “concludes that the spy agency repeatedly misled Congress, the White House and the public about the benefits of the program, under which more than 100 detainees were interrogated.”
Just to review: apparently, the CIA tortured people, lied to Congress and the public about it, then spied on the Senate when it was investigating the whole matter. As for its part, the DOJ closed its inquiry into the torture in 2012 without bringing any charges, and now has declined to investigate the CIA’s alleged spying on Congress.
In March the Senate committee responsible for oversight of the CIA issued its classified 6,300-page report – none of which has been made available to the public. At that time the committee’s chairwoman, Sen. Feinstein, said this:
“The purpose of this review was to uncover the facts behind this secret program, and the results were shocking. The report exposes brutality that stands in stark contrast to our values as a nation.”
As Feinstein noted, the CIA destroyed video tapes of some of the interrogations. Also, as former State Department employee Peter Van Buren notes, the intervention by the CIA into the Senate’s investigation very likely involved removing additional material from investigators, so the evidence which the Senate found “shocking” was probably not even the worst of it.
The whole matter – just like the NSA scandal – suggests that the agencies and contractor corporations in America’s intelligence and security industry are essentially rogue entities.
July 10, 2014
Intercept reporters comment about targeted individuals not listed
In recent interviews, the journalists at The Intercept who reported the story about NSA spying on Muslim-American leaders (see the post below) addressed questions about additional targets of government spying, and additional abuses of power that might be even more egregious.
In a video interview with Huffington Post, reporters Glenn Greenwald and Murtaza Hussain made clear that the list of emails being monitored by the NSA included many persons other than the five on whom they reported, and that in many cases, almost nothing was known about the individuals associated with the email addresses. The exchange which begins at approximately 4:15 in the interview addresses that point.
An online question-and-answer forum on reddit also touched on the issue:
Question: In your article, you cite a “FISA recap” spreadsheet that lists 7,485 e-mail addresses as monitored between 2002 and 2008. Is it your understanding that those 7,485 e-mail addresses are the only ones monitored under FISA court orders during that period?
Also, have you seen any evidence in the Snowden documents that NSA has targeted the communications of US persons absent a FISA court order?
Murtaza Hussain: We are necessarily limited to only being able to comment on the implications of what we are able to see, from what has been recorded in the documents we have. It is a fair assumption that were there activities out there that are extremely egregious and would want to be hidden even internally within an organization, these would not be recorded. As such, we are unable to prove a negative in this case.
Having said that, when such immense power is exercised in private such abuses inevitably tend to manifest. What we have documented is deeply significant and evidently shocking to many people; if there are undocumented processes being conducted those would likely be considered even more distressing.
Glenn Greenwald: We cannot say at all that these were the only emails monitored – either under FISA or some other way. There very well could be other lists we don’t have.
Also, it’s important to realize that if the NSA thought some of their targets were plainly illegally selected, it’s highly unlikely they’d put it down on paper, let alone go to the FISA court with it.
Question: Considering the US Government has a history of attacking dissidents like Martin Luther King Jr, communists and anarchists, do you believe that innocent people are in jail because of ideologically motivated NSA intelligence laundering?
Glenn Greenwald: Let me put it this way: while we do not have all the information about everything the NSA and related agencies have done, one of the big benefits of being able to publish what we do have is that it lets lawsuits be commenced, investigations proceed, and opens cracks in previously opaque walls of secrecy. Almost every one of our stories has led to other related revelations - it’s like a ball of yarn: you have to keep tugging and eventually the whole thing unravels.
Question: Are there other targeted domestic groups/organizations/
communities/interests/etc. beyond the Muslim community that you plan to report on?
Glenn Greenwald: ….Muslims, while the prime target of post-9/11 abuses, are not the only ones targeted by them, and there is definitely more big reporting to come from the Snowden archive.
July 9, 2014
NSA and FBI spied on Muslim-American leaders
Today The Intercept published a report on how the NSA and FBI secretly monitored the emails of prominent Muslim-Americans – apparently despite the absence of any evidence that they were involved an any criminal or terrorist activities.
Although the report discusses in detail five men who were the targets of surveillance, it leaves many questions unanswered, since – as usual – the FBI and the Department of Justice declined to comment:
“…it is impossible to know why their emails were monitored, or the extent of the surveillance. It is also unclear under what legal authority it was conducted, whether the men were formally targeted under FISA warrants, and what, if anything, authorities found that permitted them to continue spying on the men for prolonged periods of time.”
No one should dismiss the fact that the federal government has been caught spying on Americans – apparently based mostly on religious profiling, but frankly the story is somewhat anti-climactic after such a long wait for it to be published.
Most victims of the ongoing domestic counterintelligence operations commonly referred to as “gang stalking” will probably react to this news by wishing they could trade places with the surveillance targets identified in this report.
The men described in The Intercept story had their emails monitored temporarily. Victims of organized stalking on the other hand are subjected to long-term intense psychological operations including slander, black bag jobs, electronic surveillance, blacklisting, and even more exotic methods of extra-judicial punishment.
Since the exposure of unconstitutional policing and spying seems to require that smoking-gun official documents be dropped into the lap of a journalist – as happened in the NSA case – what is probably needed are whistle-blowers comparable to Edward Snowden inside the organizations which perpetrate illegal counterintelligence operations: security contractor firms, Law Enforcement Intelligence Units (LEIUs), and the FBI.
There are reasons the public should be concerned about the increasing secret abuses of power by such agencies and corporations. One of the targets named in The Intercept’s story, Nihad Awad, made this point:
“I think all Americans should be worried about NSA surveillance and the targeting of American Muslims….because if it is American Muslims today, it is going to be them next. ”
The U.S. government has now been caught spying on citizens who were neither criminals or terrorists. Which other innocent Americans are currently being spied on?
What would we learn if there were an Edward Snowden in each of America’s numerous intelligence agencies, law enforcement agencies, and security contractor corporations?
July 5, 2014
Another TV news broadcast about the gang stalking flyers
WTNH News 8 – another Connecticut TV station – also broadcast a report yesterday about the distribution of the flyers calling attention to alleged gang stalking in Guilford, CT.
Here is the text which accompanied the video on the station’s website:
Click on image to expand.
July 4, 2014
Fight Gang Stalking flyer featured on TV news broadcast today
Today’s 5:30 pm TV broadcast of the local NBC News in Connecticut featured a report about “suspicious flyers” being distributed in Guilford which refer to “gang stalking.” The language in the flyers sounds very familiar because the templates for the flyers are posted on the Tactics page of Fight Gang Stalking.
Here is the news report on NBC’s website:
Click on image to expand.
Happy 4th of July to everyone – especially to the anonymous reader of this website who distributed those flyers. :)
Additional News reports are emerging about this. Here is the article from the Connecticut newspaper The Courant:
GUILFORD — Police are investigating anti-government fliers left in hundreds of mailboxes throughout town over the past two months.
The fliers refer to “gang stalking” and direct recipients to a website that likens U.S. intelligence agencies to the Stasi, the former East Germany’s secret police agency.
By the way, Fight Gang Stalking is not “anti-government.” It’s anti-(corrupt) government.
Another item about the flyers was published today in the Connecticut newspaper, The Day. This notice was posted by the Guilford Police Department.
Apparently there are at least two different flyers being distributed. The one posted by the police on The Day makes reference to a particular individual who is apparently being accused by the anonymous distributor of the flyers as being somehow complicit in the gang stalking.
Click on image to enlarge.
Here is the text accompanying the above flyer:
Click image to enlarge.
A copy of the other flyer is posted here (and shown below) on The Courant website. This is one of the flyers posted on Fight Gang Stalking, but with the California legal statutes and attorney general’s phone number replaced with the numbers for Connecticut. Perfect.
Click on image to enlarge.
Note: The text accompanying the flyer posted on The Day indicates that the flyers were being “placed in mailboxes.” Just a reminder: it is legal to distribute flyers, and it is legal to anonymously mail flyers, but it is not legal to place flyers inside mailboxes.
In defense of the person who distributed the flyers though, it is also illegal to stalk someone.
July 3, 2014
New York Times reports on corrupt Blackwater mercenaries
I have written here previously about James Risen, the Pulitzer Prize-winning New York Times reporter who currently faces the possibility of being jailed for contempt of court over his refusal to reveal his confidential sources.
On Sunday, the Times published an extraordinary article by Risen about the mercenary soldier corporation formerly known as Blackwater. The story has relevance to the issue of the likely involvement of intelligence-security contractors in domestic counterintelligence stalking in the U.S. because it illustrates the deep corruption and legal impunity of ex-military personnel with secret clearances who perform dirty work for the federal government.
Several weeks before an infamous incident in which Blackwater personnel killed 17 civilians in Baghdad in 2007, the U.S. State Department had begun investigating the corporation’s misconduct and lack of oversight. However, American Embassy officials pulled the plug on that investigation and ordered the investigators to immediately leave the country. That move followed a rather interesting exchange between a Blackwater official and an investigator:
… the inquiry was abandoned after Blackwater’s top manager there issued a threat: “that he could kill” the government’s chief investigator and “no one could or would do anything about it as we were in Iraq,” according to department reports.
The death threat – which was made by a former member of SEAL Team 6 – was witnessed by another investigator. Despite having the statements of the investigators – as well as a long list of other examples of serious misconduct by Blackwater employees, the State Department never even interviewed either of the investigators during its inquiry.
The attitude among Blackwater employees – whose corporation had a contract worth over $1 billion to protect American diplomats – was described by the lead investigator as follows:
“Blackwater contractors saw themselves as above the law,” he said, adding that the “hands off” management resulted in a situation in which “the contractors, instead of Department officials, are in command and in control.”
Yesterday, Norman Pollack at CounterPunch fleshed-out some of the larger implications of the Blackwater scandals on which Risen reported, and touched on several points which also apply to organized stalking operations in the U.S.
….Blackwater would like to see, as its actions show, America become, a nation subservient to its thugs….Authoritarianism once off the ground knows no limits and demands the complete adherence of its subjects. America has lived with CIA for decades; Blackwater is icing on the cake.
….Organized thuggery knows no limits particularly when working for the highest authority, immunity from punishment worn as a badge of honor, as meanwhile government officials hide their eyes.
June 28, 2014
Rampant idiotic violence by America’s law enforcement officers
More evidence – it seems to emerge daily now – that America urgently needs laws which explicitly prohibit police departments from hiring any more officers who are both psychotic and stupid.
June 27, 2014
Police goon squads hiding behind private corporation status
This one is sort of in the “you can’t make this stuff up” category.
Yesterday the Washington Post reported that several SWAT teams in Massachusetts are claiming that the Law Enforcement Councils (LECs) under which they operate are private corporations – and consequently are exempt from open records requests.
Residents of Massachusetts – whose taxes pay for the SWAT teams – are not permitted to know how often the teams are used or who they are being used against.
Although the Post article does not mention it, these SWAT teams are taking a page from the strategy book of the LEIU – the Association of Law Enforcement Intelligence Units. The LEIU – to which I devote a section of the What is “Gang Stalking?” page of this website – is a quasi-governmental entity. Although the group received federal funding to create a networked database of intelligence to share among its members, it is a private, tax-exempt organization, and therefore mostly independent of any real oversight. Author and former CIA analyst George O’Toole described the LEIU as “America’s Secret Police Network.”
Massachusetts SWAT teams’ use of this strategy for avoiding public accountability was exposed by the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), which learned of this development when they sent open records requests to SWAT teams across the state.
Those records requests were made by the ACLU as part of an investigation into the militarization of police departments in that state. Here is an excerpt from the ACLU’s report:
“Due to the weakness of Massachusetts public records law and the culture of secrecy that has infected local police departments and Law Enforcement Councils, procuring empirical records from police departments and regional SWAT teams in Massachusetts about police militarization was universally difficult and, in most instances, impossible…”
You can download the entire ACLU report here:
June 25, 2014
Supreme Court unanimously affirms cell phone privacy rights
Today the U.S. Supreme Court unanimously ruled that police cannot search through a person’s cell phone without first getting a search warrant.
While the ruling is obviously good news for anyone who believes in the Bill of Rights, it should be noted that in this case the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) argued that law enforcement agencies should not need a search warrant. It is a clear example of the lack of respect the DOJ has for the basic rights of U.S. citizens – a fact which goes a long way toward explaining how Cointelpro-type operations, such as organized stalking, continue to be permitted.
June 23, 2014
The Intercept will name only a few targets of NSA spying
In an interview today on Fox News, Glenn Greenwald suggested that relatively few individuals will be named as specific targets of NSA spying in the forthcoming report by The Intercept. He also suggested that many of those who will be named are high-profile people, and that all of them have already been contacted to confirm that they assent to having their names reported.
Naturally, this news will be disappointing to many victims of Cointelpro-type operations such as organized stalking – some of whom have been hoping that their claims would be vindicated by the NSA documents.
On the other hand, The Intercept’s story will certainly receive wide attention in the U.S. and abroad, and will help call attention to the rogue nature of the U.S. intelligence agencies generally, just as the entire NSA scandal has done.
What is ultimately needed to expose widespread organized stalking crimes by law enforcement agencies in the U.S. is perhaps revelations about entities such as the FBI (which – unlike the NSA – is more focused upon domestic counterintelligence operations), the LEIU (the association of Law Enforcement Intelligence Units), and intelligence-security contractor firms.
June 20, 2014
Feds aggressively trying to hide cell phone tracking technology
It has been widely-known for some time that federal and local law enforcement agencies track Americans via their cell phones. The topic has received much more attention recently however, and it is worth reminding everyone that in America today carrying a cell phone is now comparable to wearing a GPS ankle bracelet such as those used to track paroled prisoners.
For a sense of how important the federal government views this system of secretly monitoring American citizens, consider the following recent incident.
Earlier this month, after filing a state-level freedom of information request, members of the ACLU were scheduled to meet with local police in Sarasota, Florida to view documents about the use of the tracking technology called “Stingray.” Before they arrived, U.S. Marshals were sent to the police department to seize the records.
To legally justify interfering with Florida’s freedom of information request process, the feds deputized one of the local cops, and declared – based on that action – that the records thereby became federal property (which would be exempt from the state’s freedom of information request).
The Stingray technology is now being used across the country, so the implication is this:
Anyone who wishes to not be constantly on Big Brother’s radar must remove the battery from his or her cellphone.
That is the only way to be sure it is not being tracked, according to the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF).
Of course, anyone targeted by illegal counterintelligence stalking has to also consider that his or her vehicle has very possibly been fitted with a GPS tracking device (in violation of the U.S. Constitution’s Fourth Amendment).
Incidentally, the ACLU also learned that the U.S. Marshals have been systematically lying to judges about the use of the cell phone tracking technology.
Stingray Device made by Harris Corp.
June 16, 2014
An overview of the state of the police state
Today’s column by John Whitehead at the Rutherford Institute offers
a good summary of several of the most disturbing elements of the militarization of America’s law enforcement.
June 15, 2014
Is the ACLU finally joining the fight against organized stalking?
The ACLU played no role in the exposure in 1971 of the FBI’s illegal Cointelpro operations. Similarly – for reasons known only to its staff – the ACLU apparently never makes any public statements about the ongoing Cointelpro operations commonly referred to as “organized stalking” or “gang stalking.”
The following flyer is an example of what the ACLU could send out
that would be helpful. Since I don’t have the authority to issue public statements on behalf of that organization, I cannot officially say whether it would approve of this flyer.
You could try to contact the ACLU about it, although – in my experience – it is unlikely that you would receive a response to an inquiry about domestic counterintelligence stalking.
It would not surprise me therefore if some targets of organized stalking concluded that the only way to get the attention of the ACLU on this issue would be to anonymously mail/distribute/post flyers such as this one, and thereby generate some attention to the crime of organized stalking.
I have no expertise about the legal liability one might potentially face for distributing a document which bears the ACLU’s logo and implies the organization’s approval. To mitigate the risk of trouble, I included a disclaimer at the bottom.
Whatever risk might be associated with this, it is certainly less than the risk assumed by those who broke into an FBI office in 1971 and stole secret documents which exposed the Cointelpro operations being perpetrated at that time.
Click image to enlarge.
To download this flyer as a Word document, click here:
June 12, 2014
Firecracker Films is still being used for a disinformation project
A reader of this website who lives in the U.K. shared an email with me that he received two days ago from a representative of Firecracker Films. As I reported in my November 17, 2013 post, the company – which is based in the U.K., but also has a U.S. office – is apparently allowing itself to be used as a front group.
For the past several years, persons purporting to be representatives of the company have been reaching out to individuals targeted by illegal counterintelligence operations in the U.S. and the U.K. and asking them to participate in a documentary they are supposedly planning to produce about organized stalking.
The perpetrators of this operation ask individuals to participate in video chat interviews about their experiences – ostensibly for the purposes of gathering material for determining whether to go ahead with the production of the documentary. Presumably, the actual intent of the faux project is either to gather information about the counterintelligence operations or to create a fake documentary for disinformation purposes (in which victims of illegal policing would be portrayed as delusional) – or perhaps both.
I would caution anyone contacted by such people to read my original post on the whole matter.
Here is a copy of the email, which had the subject line “TV development project” and was sent from this address: Claire.Kunzel@FirecrackerFilms.com
Click on image to enlarge.
June 5, 2014
Published book on 1980s gang stalking operation is available free
As I noted in my May 10 post, an American expatriate, Arnold Lockshin – who was the target of an organized stalking campaign by federal agents during the 1980s, has recently been sharing information online about his experiences.
The FBI’s infamous – and illegal – Cointelpro operations under FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover are often assumed to have ended after they were exposed by activists during the early 1970s. Incidents such as the stalking and slander of Arnold Lockshin and his family are evidence that the use of illegal counterintelligence practices never stopped.
Examples of organized stalking during the 1980s also included illegal spying and harassment directed at other political activists, as documented, for example, in Brian Glick’s War At Home (1989). By many indications – cited throughout this website – such operations continue today on an even larger scale, and the tactics are still as vicious and cowardly and illegal.
Mr. Lockshin was a cancer research scientist who fled with his family to the Soviet Union in 1986 and was granted political asylum. The Lockshins wrote a book about their ordeal, Silent Terror, which was published in 1988. Although the book is out of print, Mr. Lockshin has now generously made his book available online for free. You can view or download a copy here.
May 27, 2014
The Intercept will publish names of NSA’s “specific targets”
Individuals who have been the targets of counterintelligence crimes (organized stalking) by America’s Stasi (corrupt federal and local law enforcement goons, intelligence agents, and their parasitic security contractors) have been following the NSA surveillance story with personal interest since it broke in June of last year.
Of primary interest to targeted individuals of course is the question of whether any of the secret NSA documents will expose domestic counterintelligence crimes (“Cointelpro Version 2.0”) in addition to exposing the mass surveillance programs.
The NSA is primarily dedicated to gathering “signals intelligence” (electronic communication), rather than conducting counterintelligence operations – which are mostly handled by the FBI and by local Law Enforcement Intelligence Units (LEIUs), so the NSA’s documentation related to counterintelligence crimes such as black bag jobs, slander, and psychological operations might be limited.
On the other hand, the various intelligence and law enforcement agencies do work closely with each other, so it is possible that something helpful will emerge. An article last week by the Electronic Freedom Foundation (EFF) pointed out that the NSA documents already published reveal a close relationship between the NSA and the FBI:
“A series of slides demonstrated that the FBI essentially serves as an attack dog for the NSA, doing the NSA’s domestic dirty work.”
At a minimum of course, public revelations that the U.S. intelligence community engages in widespread unconstitutional domestic spying is helpful to victims of organized stalking in a general way. For example, it potentially creates a political environment in which stalking victims’ claims are less easily dismissed.
Recent comments by investigative journalist Glenn Greenwald have been particularly intriguing. He has promised that the news outlet with which he is associated – The Intercept – will soon be publishing the names of the people targeted by the NSA’s spying. They are currently working on preparing the story for publication. Greenwald characterizes it as the biggest story to emerge from the NSA documents, and expects it to be ready within 4 to 6 weeks.
It would be difficult to overstate the contrast between the kind of reporting being done by Greenwald and his associates on the one hand versus that which normally occurs in the Washington establishment press.
Typical beltway news reporting about national security and surveillance issues involves having a government official such as the former NSA and CIA director General Michael Hayden appear on a Sunday morning network news show to be interviewed by a sycophant like Bob Schieffer or David Gregory.
Here is Greenwald discussing Michael Hayden:
“I think he’s a war criminal and belongs in the Hague.”
May 26, 2014
The wisdom and moral courage of Thomas Paine
Memorial Day seems like a good day to read about one of America’s great revolutionary thinkers, Thomas Paine – the subject of today’s excellent column by Chris Hedges at Truthdig.
The day we traditionally remember those Americans who made the ultimate sacrifice for our country is a fitting time to review the thoughts of a man who helped clarify the distinction between a society and a government. The former is the thing for which people sacrifice their lives; the latter is – as Paine wrote – “a necessary evil.”
Many of the readers of Fight Gang Stalking are more personally familiar than most with the fact that government in the U.S. often lacks even a shred of moral legitimacy. Interacting with corrupt federal and local cops, corrupt former agents and cops, and the other various mercenary goons of the private security industry is enlightening. You get a clear sense of the legitimacy of America’s government agencies and corporations by the nature of their enforcers.
Chris Hedges understands – just as Thomas Paine did in his day – the futility of hoping to achieve reform by working through a system that is fundamentally rotten. People being pushed around by thugs need to fight back.
As Hedges notes, Paine was an example of someone willing to endure the friction that comes with challenging powerful corrupt people. After returning to Europe he was persecuted, anonymously slandered, and tailed constantly by government spies. Sound familiar?
May 25, 2014
Big Brother’s use of data Fusion Centers to monitor protesters
Thursday’s New York Times featured an article on the government’s monitoring of the Occupy Wall Street (OWS) protests three years ago. Using freedom of information requests, lawyers representing OWS participants obtained about 4,000 pages of emails and reports circulated via the nation’s network of data Fusion Centers.
Mostly the Times’ reporting on the new documents is unremarkable, but it does confirm that the homeland security folks keep a close eye on individuals involved in protests. Security personnel also took note of which protesters engaged in public speculation about the government’s watchers:
The documents show that people connected to the centers shared information about individual activists or supporters, and kept track of those who speculated in social media postings that the centers had been involved when police departments used force to clear Occupy camps.
Naturally, the U.S. military took seriously its primary role – namely, protecting the U.S. government from Americans:
Military employees also shared Occupy material. Two Defense Department employees, for example, regularly sent information to the fusion center in Washington or to a federal official connected to the center. One of them, an intelligence research specialist working in the threat analysis center of the Pentagon Force Protection Agency, circulated an email describing Google searches as “a very handy intel gathering tool” to keep tabs on Occupy protests. The other employee, assigned to the Defense Threat Reduction Agency, which addresses weapons threats, forwarded an email that included a link to an essay titled “What Police Should Be Learning From the Occupy Protests.”
May 24, 2014
America’s police state circles the wagons for its psychopaths
Last weekend the Miami Herald reported that 2 years after a mentally ill prison inmate in Florida was burned to death by prison guards, not only have no charges been filed, but an autopsy has not even been performed.
Darren Rainey died from being locked in a shower with scalding hot water sprayed on him at full blast for over an hour. Rainey was serving a two-year sentence for the victimless crime of cocaine possession.
America’s law enforcement industry personnel – cops, prison guards, FBI agents, etc. – all belong to the same tribe, and they are all above the law. The Florida Department of Corrections, the Miami-Dade Police Department, and the Miami-Dade medical examiner’s office all reportedly declined to comment on the case.
May 23, 2014
Defense Intelligence Agency weighs in on Snowden’s leaks
A heavily-redacted classified report has been released by the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) regarding the publication of the NSA documents obtained by Edward Snowden. The DIA’s report – which was obtained by a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request – concluded that releasing the documents has caused “grave” damage to U.S. intelligence capabilities.
Here is the complete list of all the specific examples offered by the DIA of how our national security was supposedly damaged by Snowden’s revelations:
(in this little box)
May 22, 2014
A left-right alliance against the police state
A long-overdue political discussion has recently begun about the desirability of forming a populist left-right alliance in America to stand up to the corporate oligarchy which currently dominates government policy.
An alliance – even an informal one – between progressives on the left and libertarians on the right could have a beneficial effect on a range of issues, such as protection of whistle-blowers and consumers, breaking-up “too big to fail” banks, reining-in corporate welfare, and ending the idiocy of marijuana prohibition.
From the perspective of anyone victimized by corrupt law enforcement and intelligence agencies though, the primary benefit would be to improve the chances of putting a leash on the rogue entities of the American police state.
Some efforts at such reforms have already begun. A bipartisan proposal which would have banned mass surveillance by the NSA almost passed in the House of Representatives last year. Ultimately it was defeated by the leaders of both parties and other legislators whose primary loyalty is to the military-industrial complex, but it was encouraging to see a serious challenge to the power of a corrupt Big Brother-type political establishment.
One of the voices in support of a left-right alliance is that of Ralph Nader, who has written a new book on the subject, called Unstoppable. An article by Nader on this issue was published a few weeks ago in CounterPunch.
In a column last week, conservative writer Pat Buchanan expressed some skepticism whether such a political alliance could be formed because of the division over social issues, but he agreed that the effort should be made.
Issues regarding domestic spying and policing are very closely tied to views on the military and foreign policy. On that constellation of issues, leaders of the Republican and Democratic parties are basically indistinguishable, as Buchanan notes:
“In 2002, Hillary Clinton and John Kerry joined John McCain and George W. Bush in backing war on Iraq. Teddy Kennedy and Bernie Sanders stood with Ron Paul and the populist and libertarian right in opposing the war.”
Buchanan clearly shares Nader’s view that the two major parties currently serve the same master, and it is not the public:
“Both parties now feed at the same K Street and Wall Street troughs. Both have oligarchs contributing tens of millions to parties and politicians who do their bidding.”
May 20, 2014
More about Law Enforcement Intelligence Units (LEIUs)
I obtained some additional information about Red Squads – also called Law Enforcement Intelligence Units (LEIUs), and added the new material to that section of the “What is Gang Stalking?” page.
I assume that the Association of LEIUs would want me – and all targets of organized stalking – to post as much information about them as possible, since they hardly ever get credit in the news media for all that they do.
May 20, 2014
Psychopaths with badges
It’s difficult to say which is more disturbing – the behavior in these increasingly frequent incidents, or the fact that so few people in the political class or the mainstream news media have the integrity to call attention to this stuff in a serious way.
I could link to stories like these every day and never run out of material. It is all relevant in a general way because organized stalking draws upon a deep supply of sadists in the law enforcement industry.
The only good thing about these incidents is that the public gets to see what kind of people the government hires as its enforcers – namely, the kind of people who enjoy shooting puppies in front of children and killing mentally ill people for amusement.
May 19, 2014
Creating docile citizens
Since he is currently on a book tour, journalist Glenn Greenwald has been in the media even more than usual lately. Some people – especially those in the U.S. intelligence and law enforcement community – are no doubt tired of hearing from him; however, the attention given to his views benefits everyone else – especially anyone who is a victim of corrupt cops – both the federal and local species.
To attack the moral rot pervasive in America’s domestic spying industry, it is necessary to challenge the core arguments of the industry’s defenders. No one does this better than Glenn Greenwald. A column published last week in the Guardian is a case in point.
For a long time, a primary assertion used to convince Americans to accept being spied on by their own government is that only criminals need to worry about being watched. Greenwald explains that such a claim ignores the element of political control which motivates most domestic spying:
The perception that invasive surveillance is confined only to a marginalised and deserving group of those “doing wrong” – the bad people – ensures that the majority acquiesces to the abuse of power or even cheers it on. But that view radically misunderstands what goals drive all institutions of authority. “Doing something wrong” in the eyes of such institutions encompasses far more than illegal acts, violent behaviour and terrorist plots. It typically extends to meaningful dissent and any genuine challenge….
…the implicit bargain that is offered to citizens: pose no challenge and you have nothing to worry about. Mind your own business, and support or at least tolerate what we do, and you’ll be fine….
….This is a deal that invites passivity, obedience and conformity. The safest course, the way to ensure being “left alone”, is to remain quiet, unthreatening and compliant.
May 16, 2014
Is the new editor at the Times a lapdog?
Even people such as me who routinely disparage the “dinosaur media” for their obvious biases and self-censorship in favor of the law enforcement community and the military-industrial complex acknowledge the importance of the mainstream press. Despite cutbacks in recent decades, major newspapers still do some serious investigative journalism; this website is filled with references to such reporting.
Since the New York Times is still the most influential entity in the American news business, it matters who is overseeing its operations. Unfortunately, Dan Baquet, the person chosen by the Times to serve as its new editor might not be exactly the adversarial watchdog type.
In an interview today on Huffington Post, journalist Glenn Greenwald expressed reservations about the new leader of the Times’ newsroom:
“…Dean Baquet does have a really disturbing history of practicing this form of journalism that is incredibly subservient to the American National security state, and if his past record and his past actions and statements are anything to go by, I think it signals that the New York Times is going to continue to descend downward into this sort of journalism that is very neutered and far too close to the very political factions that it’s supposed to exercise oversight over.”
May 15, 2014
Red Squads: America’s Secret Police Network
A low-profile national organization called the Association of Law Enforcement Intelligence Units deserves some serious consideration by anyone who wishes to understand the nature of organized stalking in the U.S.
The association – which goes by the acronym LEIU – is a quasi-governmental entity: it plays a role in law enforcement intelligence operations, yet it is a private organization and therefore has minimal oversight. If you think that’s a recipe for abuse of power, you are not alone in that analysis.
Traditionally, police intelligence units have been referred to as “red squads.” Today I posted a new version of the section about red squads on the “What is Gang Stalking?” page.
May 14, 2014
Updates on the state of the police state
Glenn Greenwald’s new book, No Place to Hide, is getting good reviews.
Frontline’s new documentary which aired last night on PBS, United States of Secrets, is also getting good reviews. You can watch it here.
May 14, 2014
A mutually beneficial relationship on the animal farm
On George Orwell’s allegorical Animal Farm, Napolean the pig represented Joseph Stalin. Napolean used dogs as his enforcers; the dogs represented Stalin’s secret police.
Attack dogs are loyal to their masters, and are treated well for their services. So it is with politicians and law enforcement personnel in America. Anyone who is familiar with the history of “red squads” – also known as Law Enforcement Intelligence Units (LEIUs) – knows that police agencies in the U.S. have always primarily served the interests of the political class (government leaders and corporations).
Because of that relationship, politicians always make a big show of their appreciation of law enforcement officers – and rarely express disapproval of extra-judicial punishment and other forms of corruption among cops.
On Monday President Obama and Vice President Biden hosted the annual “Top Cops” awards to call attention to the bravery of those who face the dangers associated with police work.
Vice President Biden apparently believes that for police officers, merely getting dressed in the morning is deserving of a medal. Here is a quote from the White House website:
Vice President Biden….[said]….that the act of putting on the police shield each morning is, in and of itself, “an act of bravery.”
As with most political theater, a closer look at the facts gives a different impression. In a post yesterday on Reason, J.D. Tuccille notes that the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics does not list law enforcement among America’s most dangerous professions.
Logging and commercial fishing are at the top of the list incidentally. America’s political establishment does not often celebrate employees of those industries however; those workers are not what activist Jeremy Hammond calls “the boot boys of the one percent.”
By the way, working on a farm is among America’s most dangerous occupations (number 9 on the Bureau of Labor’s list). On Orwell’s animal farm the most dangerous role of all was being a political dissident.
May 13, 2014
Greenwald releases additional NSA documents
Today journalist Glenn Greenwald’s new book No Place to Hide was released – and along with it, more of the secret documents obtained by NSA whistle-blower Edward Snowden.
You can download a pdf file of the new documents from Greenwald’s website, as well as an excerpt from his book, and additional notes.
May 13, 2014
ABC’s lively debate between two people with identical views
Peter Hart, writing at Fairness & Accuracy In Reporting (FAIR), notes that a segment about Edward Snowden on ABC This Week was introduced as an issue of “raging debate,” and then featured two guests with identical views.
Former NSA chief Keith Alexander and former national security aide Richard Clarke both essentially characterized Snowden as a traitor who damaged national security by his NSA revelations.
Both gentlemen were also of the opinion that the revelations enabled terrorists to adjust their tactics – the assumption being that it probably had not already occurred to the terrorists that the U.S. might attempt to monitor their communications.
Although it is not exceptional for the Sunday morning talk shows to simply promote the U.S. government’s talking points, it is helpful to occasionally be reminded of just how dishonest and shallow mainstream political news coverage tends to be on spying and national defense issues.
May 11, 2014
Secret Service director assigned agents to protect personal friend
Yesterday The Washington Post reported that in 2011 Mark Sullivan, who was then director of the Secret Service, dispatched agents to provide security checks for his aide, because she was having a dispute with her neighbor:
“Top Secret Service officials ordered members of a special unit responsible for patrolling the White House perimeter to abandon their posts over at least two months in 2011 in order to protect a personal friend of the agency’s director, according to three people familiar with the operation.”
Twice a day two agents from a White House surveillance team were sent to the aide’s home – an hour’s drive from Washington – to check on the home and on the whereabouts of the neighbor, Michael Mulligan.
Obviously, if the aide had a dispute with her neighbors that raised a concern about her security, the matter should have been handled by local police. Apparently, the Secret Service agents who were assigned to this operation had similar concerns:
“The agents thought the reassignment was a potentially illegal use of government resources. They were concerned enough about their own liability that they kept records of their involvement and their superiors’ instructions.”
Not surprisingly, having a federal goon squad outside their home did not sit well with the people who were targeted for surveillance:
“The presence of imposing-looking unmarked vehicles, including a black SUV or an American-made sedan, came as a shock to Mulligan and his then-girlfriend, Brenda Allen. They said they did not know who owned the cars that parked behind the tree line near a backyard shed.
….The couple said they barely went outside their house when the cars were there. Eventually, the mysterious surveillance and the tensions with the Chopey family led them to move, they said.”
Several aspects of this incident are relevant to the issue of organized stalking. One is the inappropriate use of government agents for personal reasons. Another is the lack of accountability. As the Post reports, the orders for the special operation “came from the top two agents in charge of the Washington field office….who have since been promoted….[and who] declined to comment.”
The man who was director of the Secret Service when this happened now runs a private security firm.
America’s law enforcement and intelligence agencies – as well as America’s private security firms – are infested with such people.
May 10, 2014
American expatriate was target of organized stalking in 1980s
Several readers of Fight Gang Stalking have brought to my attention online comments posted recently by Arnold Lockshin, an American expatriate who was the target of organized stalking in the 1980s.
Mr. Lockshin was a cancer research scientist who fled with his family to the Soviet Union in 1986 and was granted political asylum. According to Lockshin, he and his family were the targets of intense harassment by U.S. federal agents because of the socialist political views held by him and his wife, Lauren.
The harassment tactics he reported experiencing included many of those associated with other cases of organized stalking, such as slander, spying, break-ins, threats, and harassing phone calls.
The Lockshins wrote a book about their ordeal, Silent Terror, which was published in 1988. Although the book is out of print, Mr. Lockshin has indicated to me that he wishes to make it available – perhaps as a free pdf file. If that happens, I will post that news here.
Update – June 5, 2014….
A free pdf scan of Silent Terror is now posted at the jump-link above.
May 9, 2014
Homeland Stalk website to go off-line soon
Good sources of information about organized stalking have always been in short supply, and the number will soon decrease by one.
The creator of Homeland Stalk informs me that the website will be discontinued. Here is that person’s statement:
It is with sadness that I must report that my website (HomelandStalk) will be going offline soon. While I have been unable to connect all the dots, the information contained therein, is to the best of my ability and understanding, the truth of what is happening to us.
I am physically and mentally fine. Personal circumstances are necessitating this change.
The Police State that we find ourselves in, still allows for public discourse and expression. Therefore, I strongly maintain that the best course of action continues to be unrelenting exposure.
I will continue to analyze, observe, experiment and maybe someday again, I can contribute in a meaningful, public way. Even though my website will not be my public voice any longer, my fight against tyranny, oppression, fascism, compulsion, and the destruction of free will is eternal. Never give up and never give in.
Love to all.
May 8, 2014
Vigilante firefighters and cops in Ohio town terrorize couple
For 7 years a couple in Hubbard, Ohio has apparently been the target of an organized harassment campaign orchestrated by the town’s fire chief.
In 2007 Garrick and Cindy Krlich attempted to purchase a vacant house next door to their residence. At the time, the house was in probate court, and John Clemente – who was then Hubbard’s fire chief, was also attempting to purchase the property – which had been owned by the Clemente family.
Mr. Krlich filed a lawsuit to block Clemente’s purchase of the home. Clemente responded by enlisting other residents of Hubbard in a campaign to relentlessly harass the Krliches by honking car horns outside their residence – for 7 years.
Hubbard is a small town (population under 8,000) with perhaps more than its share of small-minded people, and Clemente was able to exploit that for his vengeance game.
Also, other members of the fire department and police department are apparently as corrupt as the fire chief, so he was able to enlist them as vigilantes. In the videos linked below, fire and police vehicles can be seen passing by the Krliches’ residence honking their horns.
Harassment by noise is one of the classic tactics employed by corrupt law enforcement and intelligence agencies in the U.S. and elsewhere for psychological operations against targeted individuals. It is apparently used to some degree in most or all cases of organized stalking.
Instead of responding to the organized bullying by fleeing the town, the Krliches – to their credit – elected to fight back. They filed police reports and lawsuits against the perpetrators of the harassment.
They have also documented their ordeal on a website, which includes some of their video evidence and legal records.
As the Krliches explain on their website, the local socio-political ecosystem which makes possible the harassment they have endured is contaminated by nepotism:
“Like most of the municipalities in the scandal-plagued Mahoning Valley, elected officials here don’t forget who funded their campaigns, who the power faction consists of, who can roust the votes to get them re-elected. This influence reaches through wards and precincts, through police and fire departments, through City Council and the courts.”
Fortunately, the Krliches’ story has now become the subject of news reports, such as this article in the Daily Mail.
On Friday, the ABC News TV program 20/20 broadcast a report about this as well.
May 8, 2014
Is FBI stonewalling on FOIA requests about Michael Hastings?
Activist Ryan Shapiro and journalist Jason Leopold are seeking additional information about Michael Hastings, the investigative journalist for Rolling Stone who died in June of last year in a car crash which many people viewed as suspicious.
Shapiro and Leopold think the FBI is stonewalling regarding their Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests for information about Hastings, and they have brought a lawsuit. The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) asserts that the FBI has complied with the FOIA requirements and has filed a motion for summary judgment.
May 7, 2014
Law enforcement in the “post-constitutional era”
Everyone has his or her own idea of the degree of consolidation of corporate and state power over a society’s citizens that would deserve the label of “fascism.” For some people, anything short of personally being put on a train to a prison camp would not qualify.
Still, some signposts on the road toward a fascist government are clearer than others. One such indicator occurred last week when the U.S. Supreme Court decided to let stand an appellate court ruling that allows the military to imprison U.S. citizens indefinitely in detention centers without due process.
The appellate court had overturned a lower court’s finding on the issue. In 2012 a U.S. District Court had ruled that Section 1021(b)(2) of the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) was unconstitutional.
As blogger Bob Adelmann explained, the implications of this law in the context of an open-ended “war on terror” are profound:
“….under instructions from the president, an American citizen may be arrested, incarcerated and deprived not only of his right to an attorney but access to trial in a court of law for as long as such alleged hostilities last (i.e., forever).”
On Monday, the lead plaintiff in Hedges v. Obama – journalist Chris Hedges – published a column denouncing the Supreme Court’s refusal to hear the case. He cited the response by Carl Mayer, one of the plaintiffs’ attorneys in the case:
“…the Supreme Court has turned its back on precedent dating back to the Civil War era that holds that the military cannot police the streets of America”
That the U.S. military now has jurisdiction over civilians is no small concern. As a practical matter, the executive branch has few limits anymore on what it can do simply by invoking the magical phrase “national security.”
Hedges makes a persuasive case that it would be dangerous to not push back against a corrupt government while there is still time:
“….if we do not rapidly build militant mass movements to overthrow corporate tyranny, including breaking the back of the two-party duopoly that is the mask of corporate power, we will lose our liberty.”
“….The fusion of corporate and state power means that government is broken. It is little more than a protection racket for Wall Street. And it is our job to wrest government back. This will come only through the building of mass movements.”
May 6, 2014
New York cops are even stalking dead people
Eight years after his death, NYPD officers are still periodically raiding the residence of the late James Jordan – presumably concerned that he might have come back to life.
Such extraordinary measures are understandable when you consider the severity of Mr. Jordan’s crimes: he was last arrested in 1996 for turnstile-jumping.
Reportedly, the residence – now occupied by Jordan’s widow – has been raided more than a dozen times since James Jordan died from diabetes in 2006.
[Mrs.] Jordan said the NYPD’s visits leave their home a wreck.
“They tell me to be quiet or they’ll lock me up,” she said. “So they go through my entire house, turning out drawers, looking in closets, harassing my children and asking them terrible questions.
Update – May 7, 2014…
Some reporting on this case suggests that the purpose of the raids are to put pressure on the son of the deceased man. If true – and it does seem plausible – it is a case of unconstitutional harassment rather than incompetence.
May 5, 2014
Adding insult to injury
A woman in Wisconsin had her neck broken in four places when a sheriff’s deputy rolled through a stop sign and struck her car. The woman was then arrested for drunk driving – despite being sober, as tests later confirmed. The deputy lied about what happened, as a video revealed within a few days after the accident. Then the sheriff’s department demanded that the woman pay for the accident damage. They also waited five months before dropping the charges against her.
Now, more than a year later, the woman has still not been reimbursed for her expenses. On the other hand, she apparently did not suffer any spinal cord injury. Also she has a strong legal case based on the reported facts, so she will most likely be compensated for her losses in the form of a settlement.
So her situation could be worse. Citizens targeted by organized stalking, by comparison, typically have little or no recourse to seek justice for the crimes perpetrated against them by corrupt law enforcement officers.
The crash victim’s x-ray
May 5, 2014
FBI threatened a man for not becoming an informant
In their unsuccessful effort to coerce Naji Mansour – an American citizen – into becoming an FBI informant, agents harassed his family and even threatened him. Mr. Mansour recorded some of the conversations, including one in which he was told that his refusal to cooperate would have the following results:
“A series of events is going to be put into motion. And once you put it into motion, honestly I, I’m out of it. I honestly do not care. I’m going home, you know, I got a vacation to plan. My life goes on. Yours might change. And it’s not going to, it might not be necessarily to your liking.” He added: “I’m telling you, you might get hit by a car—that is not a threat. That is a solid piece of advice.”
May 4, 2014
Snowden: NSA spies on Americans more than on other nations
In its official website, the National Security Agency (NSA) has a mission statement which clearly emphasizes the agency’s role in gathering information about “foreign adversaries.”
In his remote appearance on Wednesday to accept the Ridenhour Prize for Truth-Telling, NSA whistle-blower Edward Snowden suggested that the agency has a very different set of priorities:
“We watch our own people more closely than we watch any other population in the world.”
The NSA was not the only agency Snowden criticized in his remarks. Commenting on Thomas Drake – another NSA whistle-blower – Snowden said this:
“Thomas Drake showed us that even if you’re a real classic [whistleblower revealing] waste, fraud, and abuse in a program… there’s a very good chance the FBI will kick in your door, pull you out of the shower naked at gunpoint in front of your family, and ruin your life.”
May 3, 2014
Court ruling might force FBI to reveal identities of snitches
Yesterday the Guardian reported that on Wednesday a district court judge ruled against the FBI in a case involving an investigation of photojournalist Laura Sennett. The judge’s ruling compels the FBI to provide her with documents which will show how the agency used informants to identify her.
The ruling was the result of a FOIA request filed by the freelance photographer whose home was raided after she was observed taking photographs at a protest at the Four Seasons Hotel in Washington D.C. in April 2008. Anarchists had staged the protest – which resulted in some damages to the hotel lobby – because delegates of the International Monetary Fund were staying there.
Following the protest, the FBI began a Joint Terrorism Task Force (JTTF) investigation. Agents started conducting surveillance on the photojournalist, and then raided her home with two dozen armed law enforcement officials. Although Sennett was not arrested or charged, the agents seized computer and camera equipment and data. Sennett is suing the FBI for damages suffered as a result of the raid:
Sennett said the raid was traumatising. Around two-dozen agents “yanked my 19-year-old son out of bed at gunpoint”, she said, before quizzing her about political books on her shelf and asking what “kind of an American” she was.
As documented in news reports throughout this website, private spies are now used extensively to conduct surveillance and counterintelligence operations by the federal government and by large corporations. It appears that the incident which led to this court ruling might have been one of those cases:
“Mike German, a former FBI agent now with the Brennan Center for Justice at New York University, said he believed the two informants in the case, one of whom is said to have attended anti-capitalist meetings, could be private investigators.”
The FBI has declined to comment on the case or the ruling.
The ACLU of Massachusetts blog Privacy SOS put the FBI investigation and raid into historical perspective:
“The government’s investigation and persecution of the photo journalist fits within a long tradition of government surveillance and harassment of political activists and their associates….
….In 2008, the FBI changed the rules governing its investigations, allowing agents to monitor people absent any factual predicate or suspicion of illegal activity. The change has blown the door open to a 21st century COINTELPRO, allowing the FBI to harass people like Laura Sennett, who are never charged with a crime or even accused of violating any law.”
May 3, 2014
Yesterday’s debate is now posted online
If you missed the live broadcast of yesterday’s debate on government surveillance, you can watch it at The Intercept.
The debate begins 27 minutes into the video.
May 2, 2014
Live-stream debate today on government surveillance
At 7 pm (eastern time) today the website Munk Debates will be live-streaming a debate about whether “state surveillance is a legitimate defense of our freedoms.”
The pro-surveillance side will be represented by former CIA director Michael Hayden and Harvard Law School professor Alan Dershowitz. The anti-surveillance side will be represented by investigative journalist Glenn Greenwald and co-founder of reddit, Alexis Ohanian.
You can view the debate live for free, but you must register – which only takes a moment. Click on the Members tab, then click on Sign Up under Basic membership.
May 2, 2014
A partial record of the Sandy Hook massacre investigation
On December 14, 2012 a shooting at the Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut left 26 victims dead – 20 students and 6 adults. The shooter, 20-year-old Adam Lanza, reportedly committed suicide at the scene as first responders arrived. Lanza had also apparently killed his mother at their home prior to the mass shooting at the school.
Since the incident was the deadliest mass shooting at a high school or elementary school in U.S. history, the American public presumably has a right to know exactly what happened.
The FBI takes a slightly different view of the matter.
Last week – in response to a Freedom of Information Act request – the FBI released 175 pages of documents from the investigation of the massacre. A Connecticut newspaper, The Hartford Courant, reported that 64 pages “were completely redacted and most of the other 111 pages were heavily redacted.”
May 1, 2014
The fish that got away?
This document was posted on Pastebin yesterday. The link to it then appeared on Twitter at #AntiSec (the hashtag for Operation Anti-Security), with the comment “Can’t guarantee authenticity, but read [this].”
It purports to be the account of one of the activist hackers of the Anonymous movement who worked with Jeremy Hammond to expose counterintelligence operations by intelligence-security firms (see the post below), and who apparently narrowly escaped the clutches of the feds.
Perhaps Jeremy Hammond or Barrett Brown – or one of their associates – will confirm whether this document is authentic. Anyway, it’s an interesting read.
April 30, 2014
Barrett Brown pleads guilty to federal charges
Author and former spokesman for the Anonymous movement Barrett Brown pleaded guilty yesterday to federal charges for sharing stolen data, posting an online threat against a federal agent, obstructing the execution of a search warrant, and being an accessory to an unauthorized access of a protected computer. Most of the counts (11 of 17) originally brought against him were dropped last month.
Brown is scheduled to be sentenced in August. He now faces up to 8 ½ years in prison.
On Monday WhoWhatWhy posted this article on the feds’ efforts to keep Brown silent.
Reason magazine posted this short interview on Monday with the director of the Free Barrett Brown legal defense fund.
“It’s a politically motivated prosecution….persecution really…..They’re very willing and able to prosecute journalists and activists and people who are critical of the state or corporations. And that’s really what Barrett was looking into, was this collusion between the government the the private intelligence industry.”
Because of the sacrifices being made by Barrett Brown and Anonymous activist Jeremy Hammond – who is currently serving a 10-year prison sentence for his role in the same incident, the perpetration of counterintelligence crimes against Americans by intelligence-security firms was exposed to the public.
If you are a victim of organized stalking, you should be inspired by the courage of these two men who took personal risks to reveal the corrupt industry of private spooks used by U.S. corporations and the U.S. government to target individuals and groups to subvert political activism.
April 28, 2014
DOJ presses for reporter to be jailed for not testifying against
On Friday the U.S. Department of Justice filed a brief with the U.S. Supreme Court calling for the court to reject the petition of Pulitzer Prize winning New York Times journalist James Risen.
Risen is seeking to have the court hear his case – in which he asserts that as a journalist he should not have to rat-out his confidential sources of information about the government. The case arose when Risen was subpoenaed by federal prosecutors to testify against Jeffrey Sterling, a former CIA officer who was charged with revealing classified information. Some of the information was included in Risen’s book, State of War.
If the Supreme Court declines to hear his appeal, Risen could be sent to jail for contempt of court. James Risen has vowed not to disclose information about his sources.
As readers of this website know, mainstream news outlets have mostly ignored the case of another writer, Barrett Brown, who is currently in jail facing charges related to his reporting on counterintelligence operations perpetrated against Americans by intelligence-security firms. If Risen ends up in jail, his case would presumably be harder to ignore because of his prominence as a mainstream journalist.
April 27, 2014
The Atlantic: FBI using “Stasi-style tactics”
To its great credit, the Atlantic is reporting on the FBI’s abuse of Americans’ civil rights, and is doing so in the language appropriate for the agency’s thuggish actions. Editors at many American publications would wet their pants in fear at the thought of publishing an honest comparison of America’s federal goons to communist East Germany’s secret police.
In an article published Thursday, Conor Friedersdorf reported on a federal lawsuit – Tanvir v. Holder – filed in Manhattan earlier in the week.
“…the FBI is cornering innocent people, insisting that they act as informants for the federal government and preventing them from leaving the country if they refuse to collaborate.
Those are the tactics of the Stasi: Spy on other members of society or else. If you refuse? Forget about the ability to travel freely or visit family abroad.”
As Friedersdorf explained, FBI agents attempted to force the plaintiff to become a snitch for the feds, and when he refused, they apparently placed him on the federal No-Fly List to coerce him.
FBI agents also reportedly approached the plaintiff’s relatives and acquaintances to ask them about the plaintiff. The article quotes from the legal complaint filed about the results of such actions:
“This has caused Mr. Algibhah to be viewed in his community as someone targeted by law enforcement, resulting in his alienation, stigmatization, and loss of employment. Since the FBI’s attempts to recruit Mr. Algibhah as an informant, members of Mr. Algibhah’s community have taken to distancing themselves from him. In turn, Mr. Algibhah has also distanced himself from Muslim organizations, from his mosque and from many in his community. He no longer speaks with people in his mosque or his community because he is worried that they will report what he says to the FBI.
Three other individuals make similar allegations in the lawsuit.”
April 26, 2014
Hillary Clinton breaks her silence on mass surveillance
Hillary Clinton finally slithered out from under her rock and expressed her views on the mass surveillance exposed 10 months ago by NSA Whistle-blower Edward Snowden.
At the University of Connecticut on Wednesday evening, Clinton was asked whether Snowden’s revelations were at all helpful. She replied with one of her typically inarticulate phony bet-hedging comments in which she tried to avoid offending either the corrupt U.S. intelligence community or Americans who believe in their right to privacy – while simultaneously making clear that any sneaky unconstitutional monitoring of Americans by the police state is not her fault because – 9/11.
“People were desperate to avoid another attack, and I saw enough intelligence as a senator from New York, and then certainly as secretary [of State], that this is a constant—there are people right this minute trying to figure out how to do harm to Americans and to other innocent people,” Clinton said. “So it was a debate that needs to happen, so that we make sure that we’re not infringing on Americans’ privacy, which is a valued, cherished personal belief that we have. But we also had to figure out how to get the right amount of security.”
Just to be certain that all the war mongers, domestic enforcers, and corporate parasites associated with the powerful military-industrial surveillance state complex understand that she is a reliable puppet, Clinton made clear that she is no fan of Edward Snowden. Since she is Hillary Clinton though, she carefully slandered Snowden in a way that stopped just short of explicitly saying that he is a traitor:
“When he emerged and when he absconded with all that material, I was puzzled because we have all these protections for whistle-blowers. If he were concerned and wanted to be part of the American debate, he could have been,” she said. “But it struck me as—I just have to be honest with you—as sort of odd that he would flee to China, because Hong Kong is controlled by China, and that he would then go to Russia—two countries with which we have very difficult cyberrelationships, to put it mildly.”
Hillary Clinton is never in danger of being accused of having interesting and original thoughts – or expressing her thoughts eloquently, but for those who are impressed by politicians who can parrot the talking points of the political establishment, she came through once again.
Everyone knows that the governments of China and Russia are even more corrupt than our own, so it has become a standard line of criticism by people who are stupid or dishonest – or both – to try to associate Snowden with those governments, as Hillary Clinton did on Wednesday:
“I have a hard time thinking that somebody who is a champion of privacy and liberty has taken refuge in Russia, under Putin’s authority.”
Anyone who is not sophisticated enough to understand that Snowden sought refuge in China and Russia because those nations are among the few which are powerful enough to stand-up to pressures from Washington to turn Snowden over to the feds should not even bother attempting to understand surveillance issues.
Presumably, as a former senator and former Secretary of State, Clinton knows this perfectly well, so she’s just lying. That should endear her to the people she is seeking to reassure with her comments, since officials in the intelligence community view deception as an art.
April 25, 2014
New self-published book on organized stalking in the Netherlands
My personal experience with self-published books on gang stalking makes me skeptical of the quality of such works. Still, I wanted to share this information for what it is worth.
Orange Bruises by Maud Oortwijn was published in January, although it just came to my attention via a reader of this website. The book purports to describe several cases of organized stalking perpetrated by operatives on behalf of the Dutch royal family.
April 25, 2014
The military video game view of police work
Examples of the militarization of local police departments in America are so common that I don’t bother to post much of what I see on the topic. These particular video clips are worth a look though for anyone concerned about the police state culture infecting our country.
These are TV commercials for recruiting potential police officers. Clearly, the departments involved have a view of policing in which citizens are enemies, and the police are playing the role of an occupying army.
You can imagine what sort of people will be attracted to the law enforcement industry by such commercials.
April 25, 2014
University of Hawaii limits distribution of U.S. Constitution
Technically, the U.S. Constitution – including its First Amendment – is still in effect in America; however, if you are a student at the University of Hawaii who wants to hand-out copies of that subversive document, you will need to do so within a small “free speech zone” to avoid violating the university administrators’ policy.
April 24, 2014
Louisiana is creating “comprehensive” files on its residents
Anyone who is worried that the federal government might not be imposing a sufficiently Orwellian police state on Americans can take comfort from this: state government officials are taking their cues from the feds, and working to create their own Big Brother surveillance systems to supplement all the federal monitoring.
Louisiana authorities are building a database which will contain a “Comprehensive Person Profile” on each resident. I won’t bother criticizing the program here in any detail; the system’s proponents inadvertently reveal how disturbing the concept is by their own comments.
In this 3-minute video clip, you can watch a state legislator explain the virtues of this new program – which include predicting who is likely to become “a risk to the state” so that the state can preemptively “intervene in that person’s life.”
Note that a couple of aspects of this program are typical of this surveillance trend. One is that the system was originally designed to detect fraud, but now through a sort of “mission creep” phenomenon, it is being expanded to track data for a range of purposes.
The other common factor is that a corporate parasite is cashing in. Technology for the database was developed by the software company SAS, which profits as the privacy of Americans is destroyed.
April 23, 2014
Supreme Court chips away at the Fourth Amendment
Repealing a Constitutional amendment requires a massive political effort – as it should. Dismantling an amendment gradually through legislation, executive policy memos, and Supreme Court rulings is a much easier path.
Yesterday the U.S. Supreme Court took another step toward eliminating Americans’ Fourth Amendment rights. In a 5-4 decision the Court held that an anonymous tip is now all that is required for police to claim reasonable suspicion for initiating a traffic stop.
In his dissent, Justice Antonin Scalia said: “The Court’s opinion serves up a freedom-destroying cocktail.”
Anyone familiar with how America’s law enforcement system is sometimes used as a weapon against individuals who have crossed someone will understand the implications of declaring that an anonymous tip is all that is required to initiate a stop and search.
April 22, 2014
Police state mindset in America’s education establishment
On Thursday, Reason editor Nick Gillespie called attention to an incident which perfectly exemplifies the security paranoia and thought-police mentality that has infected American bureaucracies.
Community college administrators in New Jersey temporarily suspended a professor for posting a photo of his daughter wearing a T-shirt bearing this quote from the popular TV series Game of Thrones: “I will take what is mine with fire and blood.”
When art professor Francis Schmidt posted the photo on Google+ an email was automatically sent to a college administrator because he was on Schmidt’s contacts list. The administrator suspended the professor on the grounds that he deemed the email to be “threatening.”
Schmidt reportedly believes that the actual reason for his suspension was to retaliate against him for filing a grievance a week before regarding the denial of his request for a sabbatical.
This incident is disturbing regardless of the actual motives at play. At best, the suspension occurred because a stupid and cowardly bureaucrat reacted hysterically to a non-existent threat; at worst, it was a case of an administrator exploiting the current environment of security paranoia to retaliate against a subordinate.
Here is the full story, posted by the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE).
April 19, 2014
Rasmussen poll: most Americans view the federal government as a threat
More than twice as many American voters now regard the federal government as a threat to their rights than those who view the federal government as a protector of their rights.
A new poll by Rasmussen Reports shows that 54 percent of voters consider the federal government to be a threat to individual liberties. Only 22 percent view the government as a source of protection of individual liberties. The remaining 24 percent are undecided.
The bad news is that our government is so corrupt that few people trust it anymore; the good news is that most Americans have finally realized that the government is deeply corrupt.
April 17, 2014
DOJ does not have to reveal legal justification of American’s assassination
Last Friday a federal judge ruled that the U.S. Department of Justice does not have to make public its memo explaining its legal analysis behind the federal government’s decision to have an American citizen assassinated.
The First Amendment Coalition had sued the DOJ under the Freedom of Information Act, seeking a 2010 legal memo that supposedly “provided a legal analysis and justification for the U.S. government’s targeted killing” of U.S. citizens such as Anwar al-Awlaki – who was killed in a drone strike in 2011.
Except for a few people in the federal government who have secret clearances, no one knows what the memo says. For all we know, the memo says “We’re the federal government. We’ll assassinate any damn American citizen we want to. Fuck you.”
A fish rots from the head down, and the fish’s head regarding assassinations – and organized stalking – is the U.S. Department of Justice.
Update – April 22, 2014….
Decision was reversed on appeal
Yesterday a unanimous three-judge panel says the DOJ must release its classified memo.
April 15, 2014
Police state apologists react to Pulitzer prize for NSA reporting
Within hours of the Pulitzer prize being awarded to those who reported on Snowden’s NSA leaks, the Wall Street Journal happily made itself available as a platform for the defense of Big Brother style government.
WSJ is a reliable and well-funded cheerleader for the surveillance state and the military-industrial complex. Choosing between supporting journalism or supporting government secrecy would not have been a difficult call for the Journal’s editors.
Former British defense secretary Liam Fox’s editorial borrowed directly from the establishment talking points adopted back when the NSA story first broke: Snowden is “a self-publicizing narcissist” who committed an act of “treason.” It really rubs some people the wrong way when whistle-blowers and real journalists expose the fact that the feds secretly view the U.S. Constitution as a joke.
Condemning journalists who expose lawlessness by the feds is not new for authoritarians. As Juan Cole mentions in his column today, the loathsome and shallow hypocrite Bill Bennett expressed his anger in 2006 when the Pulitzer prize was given to Washington Post reporter Dana Priest for exposing the CIA’s use of secret prisons to torture terrorism suspects.
Bennett said the reporting was “worthy of jail.”
In this three-minute video clip Dana Priest describes the backlash against her – which included death threats – for exposing government criminality.
Victims of organized stalking perpetrated by corrupt federal and local police and their corporate cronies should expect this: when the stalking eventually gets widely exposed, there will be some neo-fascist shills who will try to publicly defend the government’s crimes.
April 15, 2014
FBI rapidly expands its face recognition database
Yesterday the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) reported that the FBI expects to have 52 million photographs in its face recognition database by next year.
According to information obtained by EFF via a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request, the Next Generation Identification (NGI) database will incorporate the FBI’s existing fingerprint database – which contains over a 100 million records – and other forms of biometric data such as iris scans and facial dimensions.
As the newly revealed information shows, the database – which will be shared with other federal, state, and local agencies – will be able to perform tens of thousands of searches every day.
EFF points out that this database will include both criminals and non-criminals – for example, people whose employers require them to have a “mug shot” photo taken as a condition of employment. In theory, this could mean that innocent people might sometimes be investigated if their photo has facial characteristics similar to those of a criminal suspect.
April 14, 2014
Pulitzer prize awarded for NSA reporting
Today the Pulitzer prize for public service was given to the Guardian and the Washington Post for reporting on the NSA surveillance practices revealed by the secret documents leaked by whistle-blower Edward Snowden.
The journalists whose work was being recognized included Glenn Greenwald, Laura Poitras, Ewan MacAskill, and Barton Gellman.
Snowden said: “Today’s decision is a vindication for everyone who believes that the public has a role in government.”
April 14, 2014
Our police state keeps us safe from schoolchildren with pencils
Earlier this month a 7th grade student in New Jersey was suspended from school and forced to undergo a five-hour psychological examination – which included being strip-searched and having blood and urine samples taken – because he was twirling a pencil and another student said he pointed it like a gun.
Incidents like that are symptoms of a paranoid “police state” mentality that is now pervasive in government and corporations in America.
Since the federal government’s terrorist screening center and fusion center databases are shrouded in secrecy, there is no way to know whether some idiot bureaucrat has added the student’s name to any of the various watchlists, but it would not surprise me.
April 13, 2014
Pulitzer Prize Board must choose sides
Tomorrow the Pulitzer Prizes for journalism will be handed out, which means that the Pulitzer Board must take a position on the leak of the secret NSA documents by Edward Snowden. The journalists who reported those leaks are either textbook examples of real journalists or they are “accomplices” to an act of treason – as alleged by Director of National Intelligence, James Clapper.
Although many people in the American news establishment routinely side with federal officials and corporations for the sake of their careers, the Pulitzer Board faces a real risk to its reputation if it does so on this issue, and they are no doubt keenly aware of that.
It will be interesting to see how they make their prize selections – and what will be the response.
April 12, 2014
New York Times editor says sources now “scared to death”
In a new interview, Jill Abramson – executive editor of the New York Times – discusses the current climate of fear created by the U.S. Department of Justice and the FBI.
Here are some quotes from the interview:
“The Obama years are a benchmark for a new level of secrecy and control.”
“[The seven criminal leak investigations] have really, I think, put a chill on reporting about national security issues in Washington.”
“Sources who want to come forward with important stories that they feel the public needs to know are just scared to death that they’re going to be prosecuted.”
“Reporters fear that they will find themselves subpoenaed.”
April 11, 2014
FBI officials abruptly depart Congressional briefing on insider threats
The blog emptywheel reported on yesterday’s speech about the Whistleblower Protection Act by Senator Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa). According to Grassley, President Obama’s Insider Threat detection program fails to adequately distinguish true insider threats – such as spies and terrorists – from whistle-blowers.
The good news for American citizens is that U.S. law enforcement and intelligence agencies have as much respect for them as they do for U.S. senators; the bad news is that they apparently have no respect for U.S. senators.
As Senator Grassley explained in his speech, when he and Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vermont) had a briefing with the FBI last week, the head of the FBI’s Insider Threat Program did not bring the program’s training materials as the senators had requested so they could review them. About ten minutes into the briefing, after the senators began raising questions about whether the bureau was fairly distinguishing between threats and whistle-blowers, the FBI officials “abruptly walked out.”
Senator Grassley described the FBI’s attitude this way:
“The FBI fiercely resists any efforts at Congressional oversight, especially on whistle-blower matters.”
Victims of organized stalking by corrupt law enforcement and intelligence agencies sometimes try to gain the attention of members of Congress so they might intervene to stop such criminal behavior. I encourage such efforts, but I would caution targeted individuals to be realistic. Senator Leahy is the Chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, and the FBI officials simply walked out of his briefing when he and Senator Grassley tried to question them about how they target individuals as potential threats.
Much of the U.S. law enforcement and intelligence industry behaves as a sort of criminal gang, and views itself as above the law.
April 10, 2014
America’s police state does not want surveillance applied to itself
Although America’s law enforcement agencies are generally enthusiastic about using surveillance technology to monitor citizens, they are somewhat less enthused about having those systems applied to themselves.
This week the Los Angeles Times reported that police officers in the LAPD had “tampered with voice recording equipment in dozens of patrol cars in an effort to avoid being monitored while on duty.”
Apparently, officers removed the antennas from 92 patrol cars. Of course, once this practice was discovered, the top brass cracked down harshly:
“LAPD Chief Charlie Beck and other top officials learned of the problem last summer but chose not to investigate which officers were responsible.”
Naturally, the police department promptly informed the officials responsible for oversight of LAPD:
“Members of the Police Commission, which oversees the department, were not briefed about the problem until months later.”
“L.A. Secret Police – Inside the LAPD Elite Spy Network”
In related news – a new book has been published about Daryl Gates, the Los Angeles police chief who was notorious for leading a police department known for brutality and racism – and for its inept response to the L.A. riots.
Another element of Gates’ legacy of corruption – as chronicled in L.A. Secret Police – was a paranoid neo-fascist spying program.
Apparently, Gates used threats and blackmail to scare city council members and the Los Angeles Times away from digging into his activities. Such behavior by the American law enforcement community goes a long way toward explaining how crimes such as organized stalking could be kept off the public’s radar.
Here is an excerpt from the book’s description on Amazon:
“L.A. cops ruined lives and reputations, inflicted mindless brutality, committed murder and engaged in massive cover-ups. In Los Angeles, police corruption was much more than unmarked envelopes stuffed with cash. It was a total corruption of power. For decades LAPD engaged in massive illegal spying and lied about it. Its spying targets included politicians, movie stars, professional athletes, news reporters and anyone wielding power or those of interest to Daryl Gates.”
April 9, 2014
New book describes FBI’s manipulation of its image in the media
Hoover’s FBI and the Fourth Estate by Matthew Cecil explains the gap between the FBI’s portrayal in the American media – as a highly professional and ethical agency – and the reality of its incompetence and corruption.
As this review of the book in WhoWhatWhy notes, Cecil shows how the truth about the FBI – which is still unknown to much of the American public – did not really begin to emerge until after the death of FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover.
“[Investigations revealed] a lawless and uncontrolled Bureau that expended enormous amounts of time and resources policing political thought rather than investigating violations of federal law… Hoover had ultimately transformed the Bureau into an American secret police force, even as he convinced the public and many in the news media that he was a trustworthy defender of civil liberties.”
April 8, 2014
Advantages of obfuscation when abusing power
Yesterday, the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) posted an excellent summary of what is known about the 78 data “Fusion Centers” across America which store and exchange intelligence for local and federal law enforcement and intelligence agencies.
Fusion Centers are a key element in the federal government’s Suspicious Activity Reporting (SAR) system which seeks to predict future criminal and terrorist activity. As the article notes, SARs originate from multiple sources:
SARs can be initiated by law enforcement, by private sector partners, or by “see something, say something” tips from citizens. They are then investigated by law enforcement.
Among the disturbing and un-American aspects of SARs is that they can be used to initiate investigations – as a way around the old-fashioned Constitutional requirement of reasonable suspicion or probably cause.
Personally, I think the most disturbing aspect of this whole Big Brother system of Fusion Centers and Suspicious Activity Reports is the shadowy bureaucratic structure in which they exist. EFF takes note of this also. When describing the obscure system of shared oversight for SARS, they have this to say:
If this all sounds confusing, that’s because it is: the entire intelligence community is a plethora of duplicative agencies with overlapping areas of responsibility.
Anyone familiar with the ethics and tactics of the U.S. intelligence business knows that deception is a core skill, and that undetected criminality and abuses of power are often merely viewed as signs of professional competence. In that context, it is reasonable to suspect that a policy framework which inherently dodges accountability did not arise by accident. The folks at EFF hint at this also:
Because they are collaborative, legal authority over fusion centers is blurred, perhaps purposefully.
On Thursday, demonstrations against the existence of Fusion Centers are scheduled in several areas across the country, including Los Angeles, the San Francisco Bay Area, Boston, and Charlotte.
April 8, 2014
Court orders FBI to release information on its system for intercepting cellphone calls
Courthouse News reported Monday that a federal judge ruled that the FBI cannot continue to delay releasing information about its use of controversial StingRay technology to track cell phone calls.
The FBI – which is notorious for its reluctance to comply with Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests – has been arguing that it should be given more time to comply with a request from the Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC) because of the large number of requests it receives. The judge ordered that the FBI must turn over all responsive, non-exempt documents by August 1st.
April 7, 2014
Homeless woman targeted by police in Los Angeles
Annie Moody has been arrested 87 times for resting on the sidewalk in Los Angeles.
Although the reported facts about her do not suggest that she is the victim of “organized stalking” in the counterintelligence sense described throughout this website, she does appear to have been made the target of an aggressive campaign by police to specifically harass her. Also, her situation does involve a few factors which also apply to gang stalking cases.
While it is not remarkable that a homeless resident of the Skid Row area of Los Angeles would be repeatedly in trouble with local law enforcement officials, Ms. Moody appears to have attracted far more than her share of attention.
An article about Moody posted on LA Activist in February, featured some interesting quotes from the public defender’s office attorney who is representing her.
“It is some sort of vendetta or grudge that the LAPD and city attorneys have against her,” he said. “Out of all the homeless people they have sleeping, sitting or lying on the sidewalk, they keep bringing in Ms. Moody.”
“They just constantly harass this poor woman to the point where it is just ridiculous.”
Moody’s attorney, Aaron Jansen, filed a motion in LA County Superior Court to drop the most recent charges against his client. In the motion, Jansen argued that the police campaign against her violated the equal protection clauses of the state and federal constitutions.
One factor which seems to have greatly contributed to the uniquely intense policing directed at Annie Moody is also common in accounts by gang stalking victims – namely, she refuses to be pushed around by the government’s enforcers. When she is arrested for sitting or sleeping on the sidewalk, she reportedly insists on defending herself in court – where she usually wins (she has been convicted of 14 misdemeanors after 87 arrests).
Apparently, Moody’s insistence on defending herself does not sit well with the LAPD and the city attorney’s office.
Another factor – also common in cases of gang stalking – is that American law enforcement officials (and corporate security-intelligence contractors) seem to prefer targeting people who have minimal resources and connections. It is smarter to hunt rabbits than wolves if you are getting paid the same amount for both.
Not one high-level bank executive was successfully prosecuted for the systemic financial frauds which helped trigger a recession five years ago. In the government’s defense though, none of those executives were caught sleeping on the sidewalk.
April 6, 2014
Revelations on the horizon
After this, I will try to refrain from posting any more “teaser” comments here about promised revelations from the cache of secret NSA documents.
Yesterday in a video chat between journalist Glenn Greenwald and whistle-blower Edward Snowden, Greenwald indicated that some of the forthcoming reports will reveal not just the range of powers wielded by the U.S. intelligence community, but also the abuse of those powers.
“My hope and my belief is that as we do more of that reporting and as people see the scope of the abuse as opposed to just the scope of the surveillance they will start to care more,” he said.
“Mark my words. Put stars by it and in two months or so come back and tell me if I didn’t make good on my word.”
April 5, 2014
Challenges for journalists in the age of Big Brother government
This Skype interview recorded two weeks ago is a fascinating discussion of the difficulties involved in reporting about the U.S. surveillance state. Roger Cohen of the New York Times interviews filmmaker Laura Poitras and journalists Glenn Greenwald and Barton Gellman.
A range of critical issues are covered in this 45-minute chat, including efforts by the feds to criminalize investigative reporting, and the importance of using anonymous and encrypted communication methods.
Among the essential points is something Greenwald explains 26 minutes into the clip – namely, that the federal government does not need to imprison a lot of reporters and sources in order to destroy the free flow of information; they just need to create “a climate of fear” through mass surveillance and aggressive investigations – which is exactly what they have done.
April 4, 2014
Cointelpro documentary will premiere at Tribeca Film Festival
A documentary about the activists who exposed the notorious FBI Cointelpro operations will debut at the Tribeca Film Festival in New York on the 18th of this month.
1971 is an account of how a small group of anti-war activists broke into an FBI office in Pennsylvania on March 8, 1971 and stole secret documents which proved that the agency was committing counterintelligence crimes against American citizens.
As the subsequent “Church Committee” investigations by Congress revealed, the FBI’s crimes included many of the same illegal tactics currently being reported by victims of organized stalking: slander, black bag jobs, warrantless electronic surveillance, threats, blacklisting, spreading disinformation, and overt surveillance (stalking).
For 42 years the activists who exposed Cointelpro remained anonymous. Three months ago they finally revealed their identities.
Breaking into an FBI office to seize secret documents – and then giving those documents to the press – was obviously a bold operation that involved the risk of long prison sentences for those involved. Many people are appropriately comparing the incident to Edward Snowden’s release of the NSA documents. What Snowden did involved the same risks and likewise exposed unconstitutional secret operations against Americans by the U.S. intelligence community.
You can watch a trailer for the film and read some interesting information about the activists at this site.
April 3, 2014
The government’s most powerful weapon: technology or words?
That is a close call in my view, and the two issues are often intertwined. NSA document revelations in February from Edward Snowden’s cache, for example, included details about how the NSA conspired with GCHQ (its British counterpart) to develop programs for disseminating lies on the Internet.
Brett Max Kaufman, who writes on national security state issues for the ACLU, reminds us that George Orwell’s cautionary observations – in his fiction and essays – included warnings about both types of threats.
Kaufman’s point is that recent discussion has centered on the technological issues of mass surveillance, although the U.S. government’s deceptive use of language should be of equal concern.
Obvious examples include gutting the Bill of Rights by passing “The Patriot Act,” or euphemistically describing torture as “enhanced interrogation.” Kaufman mentions other examples, such as claiming that assassination by drone strikes is based on “imminent threat” when the term has actually been diluted to mean “potential” threat.
Kaufman quotes Orwell from the famous essay “Politics and the English Language” in which Orwell wrote that “political speech and writing are largely the defense of the indefensible” and the use of words “designed to make lies sound truthful and murder respectable, and to give an appearance of solidity to pure wind.”
April 2, 2014
Senate Intelligence Committee votes Thursday on whether to declassify CIA torture report
Tomorrow the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence is expected to recommend declassifying its 6,300-page report on the CIA’s use of torture. Even if it does so however, the report will probably not be released to the public right away, as the CIA will likely continue to delay the process. Already it has been 16 months since the report was completed.
Information leaked to the press suggests that the CIA lied about its interrogation methods and destroyed video recordings of interrogations.
As noted by political blogger Timothy Lange – who writes for Daily Kos under the pseudonym Meteor Blades – the report is also inherently flawed because the committee failed to interview key figures in the Bush administration or recommend any punishments for those involved.
“…it means that, down the road, U.S. officials will presume that because their predecessors escaped punishment, they too can get away with human rights violations without hurting their think-tank appointments or collection of ample lecture fees.”
Update – April 3, 2014
As expected, the intelligence committee voted today to declassify the report – although at this point, just the executive summary. Here is a portion of the statement released by Committee Chairwoman Senator Diane Feinstein (D-California):
“The purpose of this review was to uncover the facts behind this secret program, and the results were shocking. The report exposes brutality that stands in stark contrast to our values as a nation. It chronicles a stain on our history that must never again be allowed to happen.”
March 31, 2014
America’s various justice systems
Justice for the rich was on display this week when a judge sentenced an heir of the Dupont family to probation for child rape. If you can detect a legitimate reason for the leniency in this case based on the reported facts, then you have a much better imagination than I do.
Justice for the poor was also in the news this week. A violent protest occurred yesterday in Albuquerque, New Mexico in response to a series of fatal shootings by police over the past two years. Members of the Anonymous movement had called for action following a recent shooting of a mentally disturbed homeless man who was illegally camping in a public space.
A video of the shooting which can be seen here appears to have been a major spark for the protests. That fact illustrates the challenge for exposing gang stalking by corrupt law enforcement officers and private security-intelligence contractors. Since the “no-touch torture” tactics used in state-sanctioned stalking are more cowardly and sneaky than those used by street cops, videos of the crimes are extremely unlikely to be legally persuasive – let alone to inspire public outrage.
Update: Another incident of police brutality was captured on video this weekend at a riot which followed a University of Arizona basketball game on Saturday night. A young woman who was walking to her car was body-checked by one of America’s brave police officers.
On Sunday, a Tucson police sergeant praised his department for their professionalism in handling the riot. His comment made clear whose interests American law enforcement agencies represent:
“It got a little rowdy and it got a little violent, but no businesses suffered any damage.”
March 30, 2014
ABC News hires former NYPD commissioner as a consultant
On Friday ABC News announced it was hiring Ray Kelly, New York City’s longest-serving police commissioner as a consultant.
Kelly’s 43 years of experience with NYPD guarantees that he has extensive knowledge of domestic surveillance and law enforcement issues. It also guarantees that he will reliably represent the political establishment’s views when he speaks on those issues for ABC.
As NYPD’s commissioner, Kelly was a staunch advocate of the controversial “stop-and-frisk” policy, which was ruled unconstitutional.
A September 2012 article in Salon noted that a decade of lawsuits against NYPD for police brutality and other transgressions had cost the city almost $1 billion.
March 28, 2014
Police raid house to punish a family for living in a country whose law enforcement agencies are run by fascist idiots
Although most gang stalking harassment is not perpetrated by on-duty uniformed police officers, these incidents reveal a lot about the attitudes and priorities of America’s law enforcement industry.
Last week a local NBC news station reported on their investigation of a SWAT team raid of the home of the Harte family in Leawood, Kansas that occurred two years ago.
For two hours a couple and their two children were subjected to an early morning raid of their house which yielded no evidence of illegal activity. When it was over, the Hartes tried to inquire about the reason for the raid, and discovered that they were not entitled to access to government records of the incident under Kansas law.
After a year-long legal battle which cost the family $25,000, the county sheriff’s office finally released the records which showed that the raid was based on an incident which occurred 8 months earlier.
A highway patrol officer had seen Mr. Harte enter a hydroponics store in Kansas City, Missouri. Harte was there to purchase supplies for his son’s science project: a basement hydroponic garden. Seven months later – a delay not explained in the government records – the officer reported this critical piece of intelligence to authorities in Johnson County. Subsequently, investigators searched through the Hartes’ trash and found wet plant material which they suspected was marijuana, so they raided the home.
The wet plant material was tea leaves.
March 27, 2014
U.S. military now gathers information on American civilians
Although the U.S. has 16 intelligence agencies (17 counting the Office of the Director of National Intelligence – which oversees the other 16), only about half of those agencies are frequently the subject of news reports.
One reason for that is that the U.S. military’s intelligence agencies – unlike the FBI for example – are not traditionally involved in domestic law enforcement. That jurisdictional boundary is not a minor technical matter. Spying on civilians by the U.S. Army during the Vietnam War for example was among the reasons the U.S. Senate launched its Church Committee investigations.
Last week the Washington Examiner reported that the Naval Criminal Investigative Service (NCIS) now maintains a huge database which tracks civilian law enforcement records – including even minor offenses such as parking tickets. Reportedly, the database already contains over 500 million entries.
The article notes that Eugene Fidell, who teaches military law at Yale Law School, describes the new policy as “domestic spying.”
“Clearly, it cannot be right that any part of the Navy is collecting traffic citation information,” Fidell said. “This sounds like something from a third-world country, where you have powerful military intelligence watching everybody.”
March 27, 2014
PFC Manning has a new legal team to handle appeal
Yesterday it was reported that Army private Bradley (now Chelsea) Manning has a new team of lawyers to handle the appeal of the court martial conviction for leaking thousands of pages of government documents to WikiLeaks. Manning is currently serving a 35-year prison sentence at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas.
This is as good a time as any to review a few of the revelations to give a sense of why the U.S. government was so upset about the disclosures. These are some of the facts excerpted from an article published by Slate last year.
During the Iraq War, U.S. authorities failed to investigate hundreds of reports of abuse, torture, rape, and murder by Iraqi police and soldiers, according to thousands of field reports.
Coalition troops’ allegedly had a role in killing at least 195 civilians in unreported incidents, one reportedly involving U.S. service members machine-gunning a bus, wounding or killing 15 passengers.
A NATO coalition in Afghanistan was using an undisclosed “black” unit of special operations forces to hunt down targets for death or detention without trial. The unit was revealed to have had a kill-or-capture list featuring details of more than 2,000 senior figures from the Taliban and al-Qaida, but it had in some cases mistakenly killed men, women, children, and Afghan police officers.
A leaked diplomatic cable provided evidence that during an incident in 2006, U.S. troops in Iraq executed at least 10 Iraqi civilians, including a woman in her 70s and a 5-month-old, then called in an airstrike to destroy the evidence.
March 25, 2014
Over 5.1 million Americans now have security clearances
Americans should be curious about the apparently vast areas of our government’s activities that the feds do not want the public to know about.
A report issued last month by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) shows that more than 5.1 million Americans have security clearances – an increase from the previous year’s 4.9 million figure.
3.6 million of the clearances are confidential or secret, and 1.5 million clearances are top secret.
Almost one-third of those top secret clearances belong to contractors rather than government employees.
One of the implications of these numbers is that there is a deep supply of individuals available to manage domestic counterintelligence operations such as organized stalking.
March 24, 2014
Secret watch-lists maintained by state governments
The author of the Homeland Stalk website brought this article to my attention.
In America most media discussion of watch-lists concerns lists maintained by the federal government – such as the terrorist watch-list, which I described in my March 16 post. As this article makes clear though, state governments also now maintain their own secret lists.
In Michigan 275,000 people are on a secret list maintained by that state’s Department of Human Services. Reportedly, many of those people do not even know they are on the list, which is called the “Michigan Child Abuse and Neglect Central Registry.”
Persons can be put on the list without ever having been convicted of a crime. All it takes is for a staff member of Child Protective Services (CPS) to declare you an abuser. Getting removed from the list is not easy:
“As the law stands now, once you’re on the registry — you’re on for life. You can ask for a hearing in front of an administrative law judge to be taken off the list, although that’s not easy to do.”
According to the article, even being found not guilty by a judge or jury in a family court or criminal court does not guarantee your name will not be placed on the registry internally by the CPS.
March 24, 2014
Video of Oxford Union debate about Edward Snowden now posted
Video clips of the opening statements of the February 19 Oxford Union debate about Edward Snowden have finally been posted online. I assume that additional clips from the debate will be posted in the near future.
Here is the opening statement by journalist and activist Chris Hedges.
Here is the Oxford Union website with all the video clips.
March 22, 2014
An email about someone killed for running a website like this one
As you can imagine, I receive some interesting emails via this website.
Yesterday I received this email – whose author suggests that his friend was killed for operating a website which exposed the nature of organized stalking.
You can judge for yourself – given Fight Gang Stalking’s subject matter – whether this email is meant to be interpreted as a death threat.
Click on image to enlarge.
March 22, 2014
Obama’s “transparent” administration is denying Freedom of Information Act requests at record rates
When first elected, President Obama famously pledged to make his White House “the most open and transparent in history.”
He sometimes still claims to be making good on that promise, although his assessment is not shared by anyone else.
In January, New York Times Executive Editor Jill Abramson said that Obama’s White House is “the most secretive White House” she has ever covered as a journalist, and cited – among other facts – that under Obama there has been an unprecedented number of criminal investigations of information leaks.
This week an Associated Press report showed that federal agencies under President Obama have been less cooperative in complying with Freedom of Information Act requests than previous administrations, and last year was the worst yet.
“More often than ever, the administration censored government files or outright denied access to them last year under the U.S. Freedom of Information Act, cited more legal exceptions it said justified withholding materials and refused a record number of times to turn over files quickly that might be especially newsworthy…”
President Obama’s policy – just like that of the FBI, CIA, and NSA – is to keep Americans in the dark about the government’s activities, and to lie about doing so.
March 20, 2014
Rep. Pelosi says when a member of Congress fights the intelligence community, “They come after you.”
Just one day after the front-runner for the GOP presidential nomination (Sen. Rand Paul) said that members of Congress seem to fear the intelligence community, the House Minority Leader, Rep. Nancy Pelosi made a comment which suggests that there is a reason for such fear. Pelosi said this about resisting the intelligence community when it tries to withhold information from Congress:
“You don’t fight it without a price, because they come after you.”
March 19, 2014
Sen. Paul says senators seem to “fear” the intelligence community
Today Politico reported that libertarian-leaning Senator Rand Paul (R-Kentucky) said something which many people suspect, but almost no one in the Washington establishment ever says publicly – namely, that members of Congress seem to be afraid of the U.S. intelligence community.
He did not say that his fellow senators have reservations about some of the policies of the intelligence community; he said that they seem to fear it.
“I think I perceive FEAR of an intelligence community drunk with power, unrepentant, and uninclined to relinquish power.”
Americans with first-hand experience with the lawless goon squads which operate with the apparent approval and support of the rogue law enforcement and intelligence agencies have long held such suspicions. It is refreshing to see a prominent political leader with the courage to voice those concerns.
March 19, 2014
Judge rules FBI must explain why it is concealing information
about alleged assassination plot against OWS protest leaders
When an advocacy group called Partnership for Civil Justice published FBI files in December 2012 about the monitoring of the Occupy Wall Street movement, among the interesting things contained in the files were references to a plan to have snipers assassinate OWS protest leaders “if deemed necessary.”
Apparently, the FBI elected not to inform the potential targets of the snipers about this plan. Presumably, that decision reflects the priorities of the agency – namely, that protecting the interests of the banks who were the subject of the protests was more important than protecting the safety and rights of American citizens exercising their freedom of speech.
The FBI files were heavily redacted. For example, the identities of the prospective snipers was excluded. When Ryan Shapiro, an activist, filed a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request for additional information from the FBI, they responded with the typical stonewalling which that hyper-secretive agency is known for and released only a handful of partially redacted pages. Shapiro then sued the FBI for not complying with the FOIA.
Two days ago Courthouse News reported that a judge ruled that the FBI must explain why it is withholding information about the plot.
A post yesterday at Privacy SOS – a blog by ACLU of Massachusetts – noted that this issue (like the issue of counterintelligence operations against OWS generally) has obvious and disturbing connections to the FBI’s history.
“Too often, the federal government withholds information from the public because it is embarrassing, not because it should be legitimately secret. Given the FBI’s history with respect to the assassination of dissident political activists, this silence is troubling.
I’m very eager to see where this case goes. No matter what happens in court, the bureau should at least be pressed to publicly explain why it kept confidential information that could have led to the targeted killings of economic justice activists, instead of warning the groups allegedly targeted. One assumes they would give that courtesy to Wall Street bankers, if they were targets of such a plot.”
This article at Justice Online is about the original publication of the FBI documents.
March 18, 2014
Edward Snowden indicates major revelations still forthcoming
In a virtual appearance today at a TED (Technology, Entertainment, Design) conference in Vancouver, NSA whistle-blower Edward Snowden suggested that more big revelations will emerge from the secret NSA documents he revealed to the press.
“I don’t think there’s any question that some of the most important reporting to be done is yet to come.”
Tim Berners-Lee, the man widely regarded as the primary inventor of the world wide web, was on hand at today’s conference. When asked whether he would describe Snowden as a traitor or a hero, he chose the latter.
March 17, 2014
Sixteen people associated with the original Church Committee call for a new Church Committee investigation
Today the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) published a letter signed by 16 former counsel, advisors, and professional staff members of the Church Committee, calling on Congress to create a similar committee to investigate possible illegal and unethical conduct by the U.S. intelligence community.
March 16, 2014
New ACLU report warns of “devastating consequences” of U.S. government’s secret watchlist
A new report by the ACLU warns of a “bloated and unfair” watchlist system which “blacklists” people “including American citizens” – “based on secret standards and evidence, without a meaningful process to challenge error and clear their names.”
According to the National Counterterrorism Center, the U.S. government’s terrorist watchlist contained approximately 875,000 people as of December 2012.
This is how the ACLU describes the standards for being included on the feds’ watchlists: “We don’t know.” The U.S. government “has refused to disclose the standards by which it places individuals on other watchlists, such as the No Fly list.”
The report notes that “being placed on a U.S. government watchlist can….ruin employment prospects, and isolate an individual from friends and associates.”
The ACLU recommends that “ultimately, Congress and the Obama administration must rein in what the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals has called ‘a vast, multi-agency, counterterrorism bureaucracy that tracks hundreds of thousands of individuals’ – a bureaucracy that remains secret and unaccountable to the public or the individuals it targets for blacklisting.”
ACLU – U.S. Govt Watchlisting
March 13, 2014
A growing chorus of calls for a new Church Committee
America’s intelligence and law enforcement community – including its vast industry of private contractors – is a lawless swamp that badly needs to be drained.
The most recent serious effort to do that was in the mid-1970s when Senator Frank Church led a committee which famously investigated the numerous crimes being perpetrated against American citizens and others by agencies such as the FBI and the CIA.
One of the challenges is a lack of moral leadership in Congress, as noted by Pat Shea, who was a member of the senate intelligence committee during the Church Committee era. Shea said that Frank Church was “an ethical giant,” and that “we now live, unfortunately, in a world of ethical midgets.”
Although the general absence of moral leadership in Washington presents a serious obstacle, at least there is a growing consensus among many in the news media that it is time to shine a light on the cockroaches.
Here is a partial list of publications, organizations, and individuals explicitly calling for a new Church Committee investigation or alleging that a new version of Cointelpro is happening.
The Nation March 12, 2014
truthout February 25, 2014
The Atlantic August 2013
Daniel Ellsberg July 1, 2013
New Republic June 11, 2013
Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) June 7, 2013
CounterPunch January 21, 2013
Forbes September 20, 2012
A petition demanding that Congress launch a Church Committee type investigation was started by the famous whistle-blower Daniel Ellsberg. The goal is to obtain 100,000 signatures. As of today, the petition already has 92,473 signatures.
You can add your name to the list here:
March 12, 2014
Federal court: DOJ can keep GPS tracking policy memos a secret
Kevin Gosztola at Firedoglake has an interesting report today about a ruling by a federal court that says the Justice Department can keep secret some important memos about the way the U.S. government views its right to track Americans using GPS.
March 11, 2014
CIA’s torture, spying, and lying scandal escalates
This document released today by the chair of the Senate Intelligence Committee is an interesting read. Apparently, in addition to torturing people, the CIA has been destroying evidence of its torture and lying about that, and lying about its lying, and spying on Congress (in violation of the separation of powers doctrine).
This scandal is very good news for anyone who is a target of the current version of Cointelpro.
The best case scenario would be for this to lead to a new Church Committee type investigation – which could also uncover some of the widespread serious domestic crimes by the intelligence and law enforcement industry and its corporate cronies.
At a minimum, this helps expose the corruption at the highest levels of government – in case there are still Americans who fail to recognize what kind of people are ruling them even after 9 months of revelations from the NSA documents leaked by Edward Snowden.
March 10, 2014
CIA lies to and spies on the people responsible for its oversight
As mentioned in the March 6th post below, the CIA has apparently been spying on the people who are supposed to be providing the oversight of the CIA and the other intelligence agencies – just as was done during the Cointelpro era. The current spying scandal appears to be connected with the CIA’s efforts to suppress reports about its use of torture at so-called “black site” prisons – and the fact that the CIA apparently lied to Congress about the effectiveness of that torture.
An insightful article by Gary Younge in the Guardian yesterday summarized it like this:
“In short the CIA spirited people away and tortured them, concluded this was useless, suppressed those conclusions, lied about them to elected officials and then spied on the people who had a democratic mandate to discover the truth precisely because they discovered the truth. Those black sites in far away lands have sister cities within the democratic process.
The defence for this duplicity is invariably national security. To be kept safe we must also be kept ignorant; to protect democracy it must be undermined. The unfettered phone surveillance of American citizens by the National Security Agency revealed the degree to which politicians collude in much of this – asking soft ball questions and apparently happier being fobbed off than taking on the democratic responsibilities.”
March 8, 2014
Julian Assange addressed SXSW via Skype today
In a video chat today, WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange addressed the folks at the South by Southwest technology festival. One of his comments was about who is actually calling the shots in Washington:
“There is a question whether the Barack Obama administration is at all serious and who really wears the pants in the administration,” said Assange. “Is it the intelligence agencies, or is it the civilian part of that administration?”
He continued: “We know what happens when a government gets serious: someone is fired, someone is forced to resign, someone is prosecuted, a big criminal investigation is launched, or budgets are cut, and none of those five things have happened in the last eight months since the Edward Snowden revelations. That means the Obama administration isn’t serious.”
Assange did, however, admit that Obama had his hands tied thanks to NSA spying, saying that if Obama decided to disband the NSA, he “would be rolled” and “people would come up with some type of dirt. The National Security Agency, having intercepted all this information, has dirt on everyone.”
The video of Assange’s Skype chat is now on Youtube:
March 8, 2014
Is the Washington Post shilling for the police state?
Editorial decisions by the Washington Post should probably be viewed with extra scrutiny now that the paper’s new owner is billionaire Jeff Bezos, the CEO of Amazon – a company which now has a $600 million contract with the CIA (which the Post’s executive editor refuses to discuss).
Maybe the editors were trying to please their new clients when they ran this photo yesterday to illustrate an article on “insider threats.”
Edward Snowden and Bradley Manning are whistle-blowers who exposed unconstitutional domestic spying and war crimes by the U.S. government. Nidal Malik Hasan is a convicted mass-murderer. Apparently the Post wants people to view those actions as being in the same category.
If anyone accuses the editors of the Washington Post of equating whistle-blowing with terrorism however, they can defend themselves by pointing out that they didn’t use the term “whistle-blower.” They refer to Snowden as a “leaker.”
March 7, 2014
Some interesting questions about the Boston Marathon bombing
Anyone who is troubled by the extreme secrecy, scandal-filled history, and frequently suspicious actions of the Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI) should read this story.
The Boston Marathon bombing in April of last year killed 3 people and injured approximately 264 others. Relative to its importance and to the long list of unanswered questions about it, the event has not received the quality of investigative journalism it deserves. A new article in Boston Magazine is an exception.
Susan Zalkind, the reporter who wrote the article, has a personal connection to the case: her friend was one of three people murdered in a related incident which occurred on September 11, 2011.
This evening, Zalkind narrated a fascinating report on the case for the radio show This American Life. Here is the web page where the audio will be posted later this weekend.
Update – March 24, 2014 – Another interesting article on this case
March 6, 2014
Ask Glenn Greenwald about organized stalking
A website called Ask Them submits questions via Twitter to verified Twitter users when enough people agree that the question should be posed.
Someone has just posted a question today about gang stalking for journalist Glenn Greenwald.
The site only requires 100 people to register their agreement that the question ought to be asked. Of course, there is no guarantee Greenwald will respond, but you might want to add your name to the list.
Update – March 10, 2014….
Apparently, the question did not reach the required number of signatures, and has now been deleted.
March 6, 2014
CIA might have spied on the committee responsible for CIA oversight
I would be surprised if the CIA was not spying on Congressional staffers, but then I’m probably more cynical than most Americans. At any rate, I’m glad they apparently got caught. All such news reports help to undermine the stupid assumption that the U.S. intelligence community has any integrity.
I would not hold my breath waiting for a new Church Committee investigation, but you never know. Sometimes these scandals grow beyond expectations.
March 6, 2014
National Review is complaining about cause stalking by unions
I don’t often cite National Review on this blog since they are usually on Big Brother’s side when it comes to police state issues, but this article might be of interest to anyone who follows news about stalking by groups.
“Cause stalking” is very different from gang stalking. The latter is much more sophisticated and intense and secretive. Gang stalking, although illegal, is sanctioned – if not orchestrated – by former and current members of intelligence and law enforcement agencies as a counterintelligence weapon, and its intended effect is psychological torture and social isolation.
In the case of gang stalking, anti-stalking laws are simply irrelevant as a practical matter because the crime is difficult to prove and because prosecutors have no interest in fighting the practice – or even discussing it.
Cause stalking is an overt form of harassment in support of a political cause. Apparently, as this article asserts, the tactics – including threats in some cases – are exempt from anti-stalking laws in several states if the perpetrators are union members. The states include California, Illinois, Wisconsin, and Pennsylvania.
March 4, 2014
Barrett Brown’s lawyers fight back against the feds’ attempt to censor the Internet
Today attorneys for journalist Barrett Brown – whose case is very relevant to organized stalking for reasons I have written about extensively on this website – filed a motion to dismiss the indictment against Brown which seeks to punish him for posting a link to information that had already been made public.
If the court rules against Brown on that issue, the case would inevitably be headed for an appeal.
Even journalists too cowardly to fight for Brown in the court of public opinion know that this has big implications. Posting links to all sorts of websites is a ubiquitous practice these days, and a ruling against Brown on that issue would leave the door open for the feds to prosecute countless people who, like me, link to sites such as WikiLeaks and Cryptome which routinely publish incriminating information the government and its cronies do not want the public to know about.
The feds might have overplayed their hand. By trying to railroad Brown, they risk calling attention to the underlying reasons why he and Michael Hastings and Jeremy Hammond and others were trying to expose those hacked emails in the first place – namely, to reveal to the American public the moral cesspool of perps in the intelligence-security industry who are using counterintelligence tactics (often illegally) against anyone who crosses someone with ties to big corporations or the federal government.
Update – March 5, 2014….
The feds dropped most of the charges today. Brown still faces the potential of a long prison sentence though.
February 27, 2014
NSA helps GCHQ spy on millions of Internet users via webcams
Today the Guardian reported that the secret NSA documents leaked by Edward Snowden revealed that the NSA aided its British counterpart GCHQ in intercepting and storing webcam images from “millions of Internet users not suspected of wrongdoing.”
The job of being an apologist for the intelligence community’s Big Brother spying policies gets harder every day. Here is how the Guardian describes the way the “Optic Nerve” program was used:
“The system, eerily reminiscent of the telescreens evoked in George Orwell’s 1984, was used for experiments in automated facial recognition, to monitor GCHQ‘s existing targets, and to discover new targets of interest.”
Judging from the comments already posted online it appears that some innocent citizens are not entirely pleased to learn that government spies are watching them inside their own homes.
Interestingly, a very small percentage of the comments actually defend the policy – or at least try to dismiss complaints about it. On the other hand, NSA documents leaked a few days ago (see the February 25 post below) proved that the same people who are watching innocent citizens inside their homes also use “cyber personas” to systematically spread lies on the Internet intended to influence public opinion. It is now impossible to know how many of the online comments which defend invasive spying practices are actually posted by government spies.
An interesting interview with one of the reporters at the Guardian who broke the story:
February 27, 2014
GOP’s early presidential front-runner scares the establishment
Libertarian-leaning Senator Rand Paul is the leading candidate among Republican voters according to the National Journal. Anyone who wishes to see America reverse its trend toward a Stasi-type police state should view this as an encouraging sign.
“His critique of the National Security Agency’s domestic surveillance techniques and noninterventionist views on foreign policy are gaining some conservative followers, but are still outside the party mainstream. Many conservative foreign policy hawks could sooner support Clinton than Paul in a 2016 matchup.”
Sen. Paul is one of the few nationally prominent political figures who has dared to challenge the supremacy of the U.S. intelligence community and military-industrial complex.
Although Sen. Paul’s public positions are far more moderate on civil liberties issues than his father – retired Congressman Ron Paul, by the standards of the Washington establishment, he is almost a radical.
Unfortunately, Sen. Paul does not agree with his father’s view that NSA whistle-blower Edward Snowden should be granted clemency, although he has said Snowden should receive only “a few years in prison.”
Earlier this month Sen. Paul filed a class-action lawsuit against the NSA to challenge the agency’s mass surveillance of phone data. In March of last year he held a filibuster to block the nomination of CIA Director John Brennan and forced the White House to very reluctantly promise to not use drone strikes to kill American citizens on American soil who are suspected of terrorism.
Incidentally, a Gallup poll after the filibuster found that although 79 percent of Americans agreed with Sen. Paul, 13 percent of Americans felt that such drone strikes were an acceptable alternative to the traditional policy of giving American suspects a trial before executing them. Presumably that 13 percent is the segment of the population from which gang stalking perps are recruited.
Among Democratic voters, a new poll by the New York Times found that more than 8 in 10 want Hillary Clinton to run for president in 2016. Ms. Clinton refuses to express any views on domestic spying or drone strikes.
February 26, 2014
Would cops and firefighters participate in organized stalking?
Only if they are not too busy committing other crimes.
Just like America’s intelligence agencies, police and firefighters in the U.S. have creative views about whether laws should apply to members of their gang.
Yesterday Reuters reported that among the 28 suspects arrested this week for disability fraud in New York City were 16 retired police officers, 4 former firefighters, and a retired NY City Department of Corrections employee.
Among 106 suspects charged last month for disability fraud were 80 retired New York cops and firefighters. The Manhattan District Attorney’s office reports that the amount stolen from taxpayers could reach $400 million.
February 25, 2014
GCHQ documents reveal how spy agencies systematically spread lies on the Internet
An article yesterday on The Intercept revealed leaked documents from NSA whistle-blower Edward Snowden which show some of the online disinformation tactics being used by the intelligence agency GCHQ (the U.K.’s equivalent of the NSA).
One of the main tactics described in the secret documents is spreading false information online to destroy the reputations of targeted individuals and groups. Another main tactic is to use social science principles to manipulate online discussions and activism.
No one familiar with organized stalking in the U.S. is unaware that western intelligence agencies systematically spread lies on the Internet – in discussion forums, for example. Now there is proof.
Among the tactics revealed by the documents is the use of false flag operations (referred to as such in the documents) in which the spy agency posts material online and makes it appear that it was posted by a targeted individual or group. GCHQ also creates fake blog posts which purport to be those of victims of the people and groups being targeted.
Other tactics include leaking confidential information and emailing colleagues, neighbors and friends of the target.
Greenwald poses this question for citizens and policy-makers on this issue:
“Who would possibly trust a government to exercise these powers at all, let alone do so in secret, with virtually no oversight, and outside of any cognizable legal framework?”
Another fundamental point made by Greenwald – and this applies equally to organized stalking – is that these tactics are not about national security. These are weapons being used in many cases to destroy people who are suspected of crimes but have never been charged or convicted, and people who are engaged in political activism of which the government disapproves.
Today activist Jacob Appelbaum posted a translation of a Stasi directive about zersetzung (gang stalking) to call attention to the striking similarities between the tactics of the communist secret police and those currently used by the U.K. and U.S. intelligence agencies – as proved by Snowden’s leaked NSA documents.
As noted in my December 24 post, Appelbaum has been the target of psychological operations by the U.S. government’s equivalent of the Stasi.
In case the above link to the Stasi directive does not work, I also posted it here as a Word Document which you can download: Stasi Directive on Zersetzung
February 23, 2014
Mike Lofgren’s Anatomy of the Deep State
Unlike the NSA, the FBI has not been exposed by an Edward Snowden scale revelation since 1971 – when activists broke into an FBI office and revealed the illegal Cointelpro operations.
Until there is some kind of document leak, targets of America’s Stasi program can only speculate about the exact structure of the operations. In the mean time, the most enlightening information is perhaps the big picture analysis of how power is wielded by the U.S. government and its cronies.
Organized stalking is a weapon for a sub-set of the political class with connections to the government’s surveillance and enforcement agencies and their contractors.
Just like the domestic security system of communist East Germany’s Stasi – upon which America’s gang stalking is apparently modeled – the program provides a means of covertly destroying anyone deemed to be inconvenient or undesirable by individuals and organizations connected to the security state.
To understand organized stalking, it is necessary to understand the power structure which sanctions it. Mike Lofgren, a former congressional staff member offers a sort of unified theory of the current U.S. power structure which attempts to explain the connection between Washington, Wall Street, the Pentagon, Silicon Valley, the intelligence community and law enforcement.
This big picture view is helpful to understanding how gang stalking might fit in.
Many observers have written about the distinction between the formal elected government and the informal “shadow government” which shapes policies, so Lofgren’s views on this subject are not entirely unique, but he does an excellent job of explaining the concept. He also speaks with some Washington insider experience, having spent nearly three decades as a congressional staffer, including on the powerful House and Senate Budget Committees.
Lofgren refers to “the deep state” as a hybrid of corporate America and the national security state.
“There is another government concealed behind the one that is visible at either end of Pennsylvania Avenue, a hybrid entity of public and private institutions ruling the country according to consistent patterns in season and out, connected to, but only intermittently controlled by, the visible state whose leaders we choose. My analysis of this phenomenon is not an exposé of a secret, conspiratorial cabal; the state within a state is hiding mostly in plain sight.”
On Friday, Lofgren appeared on Moyers and Company to discuss his views on the deep state. Here is the video:
The website for the program also features an essay by Lofgren on the same topic:
Here is a webpage of reactions to Lofgren’s portrayal of the deep rot in Washington. They include comments such as this one by Heidi Boghosian, director of the National Lawyers Guild:
“The term Deep State aptly conveys how the private security industry has melded with government. It is soldered by plutocracy, perpetual war, reduction of industrial capacity, US exceptionalism and political malfunction. Lofgren is a credible and welcome interpreter of how these factors combine to exert control over us.”
For more on this issue of who really calls the shots, you might want to consider the very credible observations expressed by NSA whistle-blower Russ Tice in this article and interview from September 2013.
February 23, 2014
Black bag job at the office of a whistle-blower organization in Washington D.C.
On Friday, Newsweek reported that the office of a national security whistle-blowers organization in Washington, DC was broken into last week.
“The intruder or intruders left dozens of computers and other valuable office equipment untouched but jimmied open a file cabinet at the Project on Government Oversight, a private organization that has conducted several sensitive investigations in recent months, including a critical report on a controversial Pentagon leak investigation.”
The burglary was similar to an incident last June, in which the high-rise office of some attorneys representing a U.S. State Department whistle-blower was burglarized, and files were stolen. In both cases, no other offices in the buildings were touched, and no valuables were taken. The State Department whistle-blower also had his email hacked in December.
The Newsweek article also notes that three years ago burglars broke into the Washington offices of the Government Accountability Project, the same organization that has offered legal support to NSA whistle-blower Edward Snowden. In that incident, six computers were stolen, including two which belonged to the group’s national security attorneys, and one to its legal director.
February 20, 2014
Tom Engelhardt on the rest of the iceberg
Anyone with first-hand experience as a target of America’s Stasi network knows that the widely-reported revelations about the NSA’s surveillance only show the surface of much deeper swamp. An article yesterday in the Nation by Tom Engelhardt makes that point clearly.
He notes that in one year (2011), the government classified over 92 million documents. Regarding the NSA revelations, he provides this perspective:
“Keep this in mind….the NSA is only one of seventeen intelligence outfits in what is called the US Intelligence Community. Some of the others are as large and well funded, and all of them generate their own troves of secret documents, undoubtedly stretching into the many millions.
And keep something else in mind: that’s just intelligence agencies. If you’re thinking about the full sweep of our national security state (NSS), you also have to include places like the Department of Homeland Security, the Energy Department (responsible for the US nuclear arsenal), and the Pentagon.”
Gang stalking is counterintelligence subversion. The U.S. agency primarily associated with counterintelligence is the FBI. Concerning that agency, Engelhardt has this to say:
“….what do you really know about the FBI, which now, among other things, issues thousands of national security letters a year (16,511 in 2011 alone), an unknown number of them for terror investigations? Since their recipients are muzzled from discussing them, we know next to nothing about them or what the Bureau is actually doing.”
February 20, 2014
Scientist stalked, threatened, and slandered by corporate goon squad
Research biologist Tyrone Hayes discovered some disturbing effects from a pesticide made by a large agribusiness corporation called Syngenta. When he refused to keep quiet about it, he became the target of a campaign by the corporation’s goon squad to discredit him by slandering him. They also stalked him, hacked his emails, and threatened him for more than a decade.
His story is the subject of a new article in The New Yorker.
Hayes also discussed his experiences on this morning’s broadcast of Democracy Now!
February 19, 2014
Chris Hedges debates U.S. police state apologists at Oxford today
I would be hard-pressed to name a journalist who understands and articulates the mutation of America’s government into a Stasi-style police state better than Chris Hedges.
His current column at truthdig contains this description of the type of government by which the U.S. is now ruled:
“There is no legal check on power. Official bodies operate with impunity outside the law. In the dual state the government can convict citizens on secret evidence in secret courts. It can strip citizens of due process and detain, torture or assassinate them, serving as judge, jury and executioner. It rules according to its own arbitrary whims and prerogatives. The outward forms of democratic participation—voting, competing political parties, judicial oversight and legislation—are hollow, political stagecraft.
….Thomas Paine described despotic government as a fungus growing out of a corrupt civil society. And this is what has happened to us.
No one who lives under constant surveillance, who is subject to detention anywhere at any time, whose conversations, messages, meetings, proclivities and habits are recorded, stored and analyzed, can be described as free. The relationship between the U.S. government and the U.S. citizen is now one of master and slave.”
Today Hedges will participate in a debate at Oxford University on the topic: “Is Edward Snowden a Hero?” His debate partner will be NSA whistle-blower William E. Binney. The opposing team will be Stewart A. Baker, a former general counsel for the NSA, P.J. Crowley, a former State Department spokesman, and Jeffrey Toobin, a legal analyst and media commentator.
Unfortunately, the debate will not be streamed live, but the Oxford Union posts their debates on YouTube, so I expect it will be there soon. Here is their YouTube channel.
February 18, 2014
Hillary Clinton’s bold stance on surveillance: she refuses to discuss it
Despite being a prominent political figure, Hillary Clinton is rarely mentioned in this blog. There is a reason for that.
During all the recent disturbing revelations about domestic surveillance policies and aggressive prosecution of whistle-blowers, Clinton has remained conspicuously silent.
Last September, in one of the rare exceptions, Hillary Clinton made this bold assertion during a speech in Philadelphia:
“How do we provide both security and liberty at home and abroad? Every era faces its own questions and has to fashion its own answers, and we are no different.”
So it wasn’t exactly Winston Churchill-caliber rhetoric. More importantly though, the fact that someone who is frequently mentioned as a possible contender for the presidency refuses to express any opinion whatsoever on the surveillance state is not encouraging.
Fortunately, I’m not the only one who has noticed that Hillary Clinton is dodging the whole issue of domestic spying. Yesterday, Josh Gerstein at Politico took note of it also.
February 17, 2014
Civil lawsuit against police officers for stalking is back in the news
After a Florida Highway Patrol officer cited an off-duty cop for reckless driving in October 2011, she became a stalking target for numerous police officers from multiple jurisdictions.
Apparently, Donna Watts had violated the rule that members of the law enforcement community – like members of the U.S. intelligence community – are supposed to be completely above the law.
Here is a description from an Associated Press report of some of what followed:
“Watts’ actions involving a fellow officer didn’t sit well with many in law enforcement, and not long after she made that traffic stop, she says, the harassment began. Random telephone calls on her cell phone. Some were threats and some were prank calls, including orders for pizza. Unfamiliar vehicles and police cars sat idling in her cul-de-sac. She was afraid to open her mailbox.
Watts suspected her private driver’s license information was being accessed by fellow officers, so she made a public records request with the Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles. It turned out she was right: over a three-month period, at least 88 law enforcement officers from 25 different agencies accessed Watts’ driver’s license information more than 200 times, according to her lawyer.”
Watts filed a federal lawsuit in December 2012 which named all the officers and agencies as defendants. Here is a copy of the claim: Donna Watts’ Complaint
The case was in the news again last week – apparently because it involves a driver’s license information privacy issue of interest to the U.S. Justice Department. Also, the judge is expected to rule in the next few weeks on motions by the agencies and police officers to dismiss the case.
February 15, 2014
Land of the free: U.S. drops to 46th in press freedom ranking
Reporters Without Borders now ranks America as the 46th best country for journalist freedoms – in between Romania and Haiti.
February 13, 2014
U.S. spy industry studies online game players to learn about insider threat detection
Among people who believe in privacy and freedom and government transparency, Edward Snowden is seen as a patriotic whistle-blower. In the counterintelligence industry however, Snowden is what is known as an “insider threat.”
In an effort to refine its ability to detect such persons before they can leak information, the U.S. government has been studying the behavior of online gamers. An interesting article about that has been posted at Defense One: “How Big Data Could Help the U.S. Predict the Next Snowden.”
No one in America’s intelligence community seems inclined to discuss the other option for avoiding another Edward Snowden incident – namely, to stop using unconstitutional secret programs to spy on American citizens.
February 13, 2014
Ron Paul has launched a petition to grant clemency to Edward Snowden
Today former congressman Ron Paul launched a petition calling for NSA whistle-blower Edward Snowden to be granted clemency.
You can sign the petition here:
February 12, 2014
A look back at the 2007 Washington Post article on gang stalking
A cover article published 7 years ago in the Washington Post Magazine is still one of the most prominent in-depth articles about gang stalking which has appeared in the mainstream U.S. news media.
Although the article is not new, I only recently posted the link to it on this website – along with my analysis. If you want to read it, you can find it here.
Some people have serious concerns about how much of that relatively-independent reporting about the intelligence industry can be expected from the Washington Post under its new leadership. An article posted today by Norman Solomon at CounterPunch notes a major conflict-of-interest issue.
The CIA has awarded a $600 million contract to Amazon to provide the agency’s “cloud” computing services. Amazon’s CEO and main stakeholder, Jeff Bezos, bought the Washington Post six months ago.
The Post’s recent reporting on the CIA makes no mention of that financial connection, and its executive editor refuses to discuss the matter despite being presented with a petition signed by 30,000 people who are asking for a full-disclosure policy.
February 9, 2014
The Onion: American Citizens Split on DOJ Memo Authorizing Government To Kill Them
Sadly, the folks at the Onion did not have to exaggerate much when describing Americans’ blind obedience to corrupt federal agencies.
February 8, 2014
V.A. doctors said Washington Navy Yard shooter had no mental health issues
Last week the Associated Press (AP) reported that the medical records of Aaron Alexis – the gunman who killed 12 people and injured 8 in a shooting rampage in September of last year – indicated that the Veterans Affairs doctors who examined Alexis weeks before the shooting determined that he did not appear to have any mental health issues.
“Speech and thoughts clear and focused…” was the description of the attending doctor.
The AP obtained Alexis’s medical records via a Freedom of Information Act request. Normally, the government does not disclose medical records, but the Veterans Affairs Department made an exception because of the public interest in the mass shooting.
It has been widely reported that Alexis had complained that he was the victim of precisely the kind of electronic harassment commonly described by many self-proclaimed targets of U.S. counterintelligence subversion (gang stalking).
About six weeks before the shooting, while staying at a hotel, Alexis had complained about being harassed by noise (a common tactic in psychological operations). This harassment apparently was leaving him sleep-deprived, and he reported his insomnia to his VA doctors.
“An attending doctor provided additional details, saying Alexis suffered from fatigue after sleeping only two or three hours every night over the past three weeks.”
A complete record of the interesting facts reported about the shooting, can be seen here.
February 7, 2014
U.S. Supreme Court Justice Scalia warns about internment camps
On Monday U.S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia publicly warned that it would not surprise him if the U.S. Supreme Court authorized internment camps for U.S. citizens again during wartime – just as it did for Japanese-Americans during World War II.
Scalia’s comment came in response to a question posed while he was at the University of Hawaii. He was responding to a question about the Supreme Court’s decision in Korematsu v. U.S., in which the court ruled in favor of forcing Japanese-Americans to report to an internment camp.
Scalia made clear that he felt that the decision was wrong, but that such rulings are likely to happen again during times of war.
“Well of course Korematsu was wrong. And I think we have repudiated [it] in a later case. But you are kidding yourself if you think the same thing will not happen again.”
A well-established policy in the U.S. corporate mainstream news media is that discussion of internment camps should always be portrayed dismissively as a lunatic fringe concern. You can examine the various media accounts of opinions expressed by former Minnesota Governor Jesse Ventura for examples.
Antonin Scalia is also frequently characterized in the Washington news media as being outside the mainstream because of his conservative views, but it does undermine the establishment propaganda a bit when a United States Supreme Court Justice explicitly states that the danger of such police state actions is real.
Thank you to the Hawaiian reader of this website who brought Scalia’s comments to my attention.
February 2, 2014
Gang stalking victim in New Jersey who distributed flyers has died
A reader of this website has brought to my attention that Frank L. Raffaele – whose distribution of flyers about gang stalking was the subject of an article in a New Jersey newspaper – died in November.
I offer my condolences to his relatives and friends.
Here is my post about the Verona-Cedar Grove Times newspaper article about his flyers.
January 31, 2014
Obama’s expert on lying warns about “paranoid libertarianism”
Cass R. Sunstein, a Harvard Law School professor and close confidant of President Obama, has written a column at Bloomberg calling attention to the danger of letting “paranoia” influence public policy.
Sunstein is concerned about folks on both the left and right of the political spectrum who have “a wildly exaggerated sense of risks” that the government will abuse its authority in ways which violate civil liberties.
This “presumption of bad faith on the part of government officials” is unwarranted as Sunstein sees it. For perspective, it is important to know that Mr. Sunstein has interesting views about lying. He co-authored a paper at Harvard in 2008 which asserted that sometimes it’s a good idea for the government to lie to the public to shape opinion in ways that make people easier to govern. Seriously.
Presumably because he shares Obama’s views on the usefulness of lying, Sunstein was chosen to run the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs during the first Obama administration. His responsibilities in that position included overseeing policies on privacy and information quality.
He was also appointed by the White House last summer to serve on the panel which reviewed the NSA’s surveillance program in the wake of the disclosures by whistle-blower Edward Snowden. Again, presumably Sunstein was chosen for his creative notions about honesty and for his belief that massive secret expansions of government power should not be viewed with suspicion.
Although he is critical of paranoia, Sunstein is selective about which instances of paranoid thinking should be resisted. He seems to be unconcerned, for example, about the federal government’s conviction that our nation should be obsessed with terrorism – notwithstanding the fact that it is statistically less of a threat than say, lightning strikes.
Instead, the “paranoia” which Sunstein objects to is the kind exhibited by civil liberties advocates – the people who protest things like black-listing and profiling and harassment by thugs in the law enforcement industry.
“Paranoid libertarians tend to believe that as individuals or as members of specified groups, they are being targeted by the government, or will be targeted imminently, or will be targeted as soon as officials have the opportunity to target them.”
For whatever reason, the column does not mention any people who have actually been unjustly targeted by powerful government officials and agencies – such as the victims of the FBI’s Cointelpro operations or victims of current counterintelligence harassment (gang stalking) such as Jeffrey Kantor (see the post below).
Sunstein has adopted the totally-reasonable view that since Harvard professors who are close associates of the President of the United States do not seem to be targeted for harassment by the government, no one should be concerned about being targeted.
This compelling logic presumably impressed the editors at Bloomberg – which is owned by billionaire Michael Bloomberg.
So we have a consensus: a Harvard professor, a U.S. president, and a billionaire all agree: no one should worry that powerful people might abuse their power by targeting those who are deemed inconvenient. That settles it.
January 25, 2014
U.S. government contractor sues federal officials for gang-stalking him
CBS, the Daily Mail, RT, and Tech Dirt reported that last month a former U.S. government contractor filed a lawsuit against federal agencies and high-level government officials for gang stalking him and causing him to lose his job. The story first appeared on 10 December in Courthouse News Service, a national source of civil litigation news for attorneys.
Officials named as defendants in the lawsuit include Attorney General Eric Holder, Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, CIA Director John Brennan, Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel and Secretary of State John Kerry.
Jeffrey Kantor, the plaintiff, claims he became the target of intense stalking, harassment, and threats beginning in October 2009 after he made a Google search which attracted the attention of federal agents.
As the Daily Mail reported, Kantor alleges that he “was fired from his job after the government stalked him and used his co-workers to emotionally abuse him.”
Kantor’s lawsuit seeks $13.8 million in compensatory damages and $45 million in punitive damages, as well as an injunction to prevent the government from further stalking him.
Kantor’s complaint – filed on 4 December in Federal court in Virginia – alleges that the federal government made him the target of a “group stalking” campaign. The complaint states that group stalking is “(aka gang-stalking).”
As I explain in this website, “gang stalking” is a slang term for a set of counterintelligence subversion tactics used by U.S. intelligence and law enforcement agencies such as the FBI, and is also used by police and intelligence agencies in other nations. It was most famously used in communist East Germany by the Stasi (state police) – where the process was called zersetzung (which translates as “decomposition” or “corrosion”).
As explained in his complaint, the stalking began after Kantor performed a Google search for information about how to build a radio-controlled airplane – which he was planning to build with his son. According to Kantor, Google’s auto-complete function finished his query as “How to build a radio controlled bomb.”
According to Kantor, he then became a target of constant surveillance by government officials who began monitoring his computer activity, his book purchases, his phone calls, and his private conversations in his residence and in his car.
His claim also asserts that a GPS antenna was secretly attached to his car to monitor his travel.
At his workplace, Kantor became the target of constant verbal harassment and threats by his co-workers (a process known as “mobbing”).
At the time, Kantor was employed by the Appian Corporation – a sub-contractor of a company called CRGT – which was hired by the large defense contractor Northrop Grumman to work for the U.S. Army at Fort Belvoir, Virginia.
Jeffrey Kantor is also suing the Appian Corporation. That case was filed in November in the Virginia Eastern District Court. Here are the pleadings associated with that claim.
Kantor’s federal civil lawsuit against the U.S. government claims that the government’s gang stalking campaign against him involved illegal disclosure of his personal information, and violated the federal anti-stalking law. The suit also challenges the constitutional legitimacy of the Patriot Act.
According to the complaint, the gang stalking of Mr. Kantor involved multiple violations of his rights under the Constitution:
“Kantor asserts that this was done in an attempt to deprive Kantor of his 1st amendment right to free speech, his 4th amendment right to be secure in his house and papers, and his 5th amendment right to due process, his 6th amendment right to counsel, and his 8th amendment right to not be subjected to cruel and unusual punishment.”
Among the allegations in the complaint was that Kantor’s co-workers were apparently used to perpetrate constant verbal harassment and threats against him at his workplace.
Mainstream news media reports of this workplace harassment element of gang stalking – such as this August 2000 article in Newsweek/Daily Beast – refer to the process as “mobbing.”
Kantor claims that federal agents apparently used personal information about him – obtained by a secret FISA warrant under the Patriot Act – to psychologically torture him at work. The process continued after he found a new job.
The tactic, familiar to anyone targeted by gang stalking, involves making comments about something which could only have been acquired via unconstitutional surveillance – for example, the contents of a private conversation inside the victim’s residence. Comments are also made which will be understood as threats – but which are never explicit enough to be legally incriminating if recorded.
“Each time his information was repeated back, a person would immediately say there is a person and that person dropped dead from hypertension. If Kantor reacted angrily to them repeating back his private information (which included conversations in his house, conversations on his cell phone, emails that he sent, websites that he went to, and books that he got from the library) then the person instead of saying that there is a person who dropped dead from hypertension, would instead say that they had a neighbor who seemed like a nice person but went on a murder-suicide.”
Gang stalking – such as was done to Kantor – is a form of extra-judicial punishment. Kantor’s claim implies this by saying that such actions were done “for the purpose of harassment and group stalking, which has no legitimate investigative purpose.”
Harassment of Jeffrey Kantor included anti-Semitic comments according to his complaint. This too is consistent with a strategy apparently used in all cases of gang stalking – namely, trying to provoke emotional reactions by the targeted individual through the use of comments personally tailored to the victim (Kantor is Jewish).
As the CBS report of the lawsuit indicates, Kantor states that he reported the anti-Semitic comments to the Anti-Defamation League, after which he experienced an increase in the frequency of death threats.
Kantor’s complaint is filled with details about incidents that were intended to provoke him on a personal level – such as comments about Jews trying to control the U.S. government through the central bank. These tactics are consistent with reports of FBI tactics generally, which apparently often involve baiting people so that agents can capture some form of incriminating behavior when they react.
One example of this appears on page 17 of the complaint. One of Kantor’s co-workers would repeat Kantor’s private information to him “in a whiny high-pitched voice that he never used otherwise.”
Something which is apparent from the claim is that the plaintiff, Mr. Kantor, is an intellectually-sophisticated target. For example, at the time when his gang stalking began, Kantor was studying chemistry at George Mason University.
From my experience with correspondents who contact me via this website – individuals targeted by America’s Stasi agents range from clueless to exceptionally smart. Possibly some of the former end up as targets of counterintelligence subversion for the same reason that many of the “terrorists” arrested by the FBI seem to have been entrapped – namely, because they are essentially soft targets and therefore easy work for the agents and intelligence-security contractors who manage their surveillance. Conversely, some people might be targeted because their employer or an FBI agent suspects that they are dangerously capable of independent thought.
I have no doubt whatsoever – based on personal experience and news reports I cite elsewhere in this website – that gang stalking, not surprisingly, is also used as a personal weapon by people associated with the law enforcement and intelligence community to exact revenge.
Jeffrey Kantor is exceptional in that he had the wherewithal to document his case and retain legal counsel. His harassment is far from unique though – as indicated, for example, in the DOJ Statistics about cases of stalking which involve multiple perpetrators.
Kantor’s case is also probably typical in the sense that when an assessment is made that someone should be targeted, the career interests and egos of the agents involved make it very unlikely that the initial decision will be later acknowledged to have been wrong.
Of course, even if someone is an appropriate target of an investigation, the use of extra-judicial punishment would still be unconstitutional.
Note also that the tactics Kantor alleges were used against him – which are typical of accounts by other targeted individuals – involved psychological operations specifically intended to generate angry reactions by the target.
One of the intended effects of such methods – which are textbook FBI tricks – is that once someone is targeted for subversion, he or she will almost inevitably react in ways that can be portrayed as evidence that the individual is emotionally unstable – and therefore deserving of surveillance. It quickly becomes a Kafkaesque nightmare for the victim, who is essentially at the mercy of a bunch of sociopath minions of a rogue intelligence agency.
As is typical of gang stalking cases, the numerous incidents described in Kantor’s complaint are – by design – inherently difficult to prove. For example, even if the abusive comments were recorded, it would be very hard to show that they were part of a conspiracy to torment the victim.
No doubt Kantor and his attorney, Stephen Swift, understand the challenge they are facing. Quite possibly, the agencies involved will also employ a variety of illegal dirty tricks as the case progresses to make the challenge even greater. I have enormous respect for Mr. Swift’s courage for even taking the case, whatever the outcome.
January 21, 2014
“Morbid Reality” comment thread about gang stalking on reddit.com
A discussion thread (a “subreddit” in reddit-speak) called “Morbid Reality” has been generating some Internet traffic to Fight Gang Stalking recently. Predictably, there are the usual disinformation comments by FBI sock-puppet minions, but also a few legitimate comments – several of which contained links to Fight Gang Stalking.
Here is one of the recent comments – in response to the disinformation:
It’s a fascinating puzzle why “paranoid schizophrenia” would sweep across the country and manifest itself coincidentally in precisely similar experiences. Schizophrenia is a genetic and neuro-biological illness. Those are not known to be contagious.
Hmmm… What would Sherlock Holmes think about the schizophrenia theory?
The other theory is that – since the described experiences are precisely identical to counterintelligence subversion psyops tactics used by the FBI and formerly by the East German Stasi, that what is happening is a new version of Cointelpro.
By remarkable coincidence, a former high-level FBI official, the late Ted L. Gunderson, publicly maintained that gang stalking is in fact a modern version of the FBI’s infamous Cointelpro operations.
January 20, 2014
Former FBI agent tried to smear Edward Snowden on “Meet the Press”
On yesterday’s broadcast of NBC’s “Meet the Press,” chairman of the House intelligence committee, Mike Rogers (R-Michigan), tried to slander NSA whistle-blower Edward Snowden by alleging that he probably worked with Russia to obtain and reveal NSA secrets.
Being a former FBI agent, Rogers is not especially fond of the man who exposed the Stasi rodent empire.
Rep. Rogers said he suspected that Snowden was “a thief whom we believe had some help.”
“Let me just say this. I believe there’s a reason he ended up in the hands, the loving arms, of an FSB agent in Moscow. I don’t think that’s a coincidence.”
In support of his allegations against Snowden, the Congressman cited – nothing.
Of course, NBC’s totally-legitimate serious journalist David Gregory did not let that purely-fabricated allegation go unchallenged: “That’s a significant development if it’s true” he said.
In response to that withering cross-examination, Rogers said this:
“Well, like I said, we have questions we have to answer. But as somebody who used to do investigations, some of the things we’re finding we would call clues that certainly would indicate to me that he had some help.”
David Gregory then asked Senator Diane Feinstein (D-California), chairwoman of the Senate intelligence committee if she concurred with Congressman Rogers’ suspicions that Snowden colluded with the Russians.
“He may well have” said Sen. Feinstein.
Naturally, Gregory demanded to know the evidence of Snowden’s alleged treason. He did this by asking Feinstein this:
“Is it critical, then, to get to the bottom? And will you investigate who might have been involved and whether there was any link to the Russians?”
Thankfully, both Feinstein and Rogers assured Gregory – and the American public – by saying “Absolutely.”
Apparently, the talking points had been passed around to all the top political rodents connected to the U.S. intelligence community. Michael McCaul (R-Texas), chairman of the House committee on homeland security told ABC’s “This Week:” “I believe he [Snowden] was cultivated by a foreign power to do what he did.” McCaul also apparently based his suspicions on the same non-existent evidence.
“I think he was helped by others. Again, I can’t give a definitive statement on that…”
Using the same standards of proof, it could be fairly alleged that Edward Snowden might have been assisted by space aliens. We’ll just have to wait to see if evidence for that emerges. In the mean time, we cannot rule it out.
January 16, 2014
This would explain a few things
Most of the reporting on the moral corruption of the NSA recently has naturally centered on Edward Snowden, but another NSA whistle-blower, Russell Tice, has provided some interesting revelations as well.
This interview with Tice raises questions about the possible role of blackmail in U.S. policy making. Blackmail could explain why, for example, an apparently progressive Senator Obama seemed to become a tool of the intelligence community after being elected president.
January 15, 2014
What can law enforcement personnel in America get away with?
This is what law enforcement personnel in America can get away with.
On Monday a jury in southern California decided that it was OK with them that officers from their local police department beat to death an unarmed mentally ill homeless man who was posing no risk to anyone.
The mere fact that the whole incident was completely recorded on surveillance video (and audio), and that the victim was pleading for mercy during the ten minutes he was being beaten by a half-dozen police officers was deemed by the jury to be of no significance. They found the officers innocent – not only of the murder charge against the main defendant – but also of the lesser charges of excessive use of force.
Apparently, the jurors were of the view that anyone in America who has a uniform and a badge should never have his actions questioned for any reason.
The victim, Kelly Thomas, was well-known to the officers who murdered him. He suffered from schizophrenia.
On the audio recording of the incident, as he was being beaten, Thomas could be heard screaming and begging for his life. During the final ten minutes of his life, as he was being killed, Thomas repeatedly shouted “I’m sorry” to the police officers, and repeatedly called out “Dad, help me! Dad help me!”
Kelly Thomas also shouted “I can’t breathe!” On the fourth day of the trial, the coroner who conducted Thomas’s autopsy confirmed that he died from lack of oxygen caused by chest compression during his struggle with police.
About 15 minutes into the video, one of the officers donned a pair of rubber gloves and said to Thomas: “See these fists? They’re going to fuck you up.” The officers repeatedly tasered Thomas and beat him with their fists and batons and bashed-in his face with the butt of their taser-gun.
He died five days later when he was removed from life-support.
Apparently, there are no rules for the government’s enforcers.
January 15, 2014
A glimpse of the shadow government
In a column posted Sunday on the excellent website TomDispatch.com, Peter Van Buren, a former State Department Foreign Service Officer, suggests that the domestic spying revelations of NSA whistle-blower Edward Snowden are only the tip of the iceberg.
Counterintelligence activities – such as gang stalking – would not be part of the NSA’s responsibilities. Those operations would presumably be handled by the FBI or perhaps the Department of Homeland Security.
“…count on one thing: we undoubtedly don’t yet know the worst or most illegal aspects of this era of “intelligence.” After all, while Snowden “liberated” up to 1.7 million National Security Agency documents (many of them not yet looked at, analyzed, or written about), there have been no similar twenty-first-century break-ins at the FBI, the CIA, or other parts of the American intelligence community (or for that matter at the Pentagon and the Department of Homeland Security). Massive and shocking as the NSA revelations have been, the curtain has only been pulled back on a corner of the new Washington world that we, the people, continue to fund, even if we aren’t considered important enough to know anything about it.” [emphasis added]
Another insightful piece on TomDispatch.com was posted last week by the website’s founder Tom Engelhardt, regarding the expansion of the national security complex. Engelhardt teaches at the Graduate School of Journalism at the University of California, Berkeley.
“It has essentially merged with a set of crony outfits that now do a significant part of its work. It has hired private contractors by the tens of thousands, creating corporate spies, corporate analysts, corporate mercenaries, corporate builders, and corporate providers for a structure that is increasingly becoming the profit-center of a state within a state.”
January 14, 2014
Government stonewalling on Washington Navy Yard Shooting?
Mainstream news reports of the mass shooting at the Washington Navy Yard in September 2013 contained multiple references to allegations about gang stalking. The shooter, Aaron Alexis, claimed to have been the target of organized stalking/MK Ultra tactics, including electronic harassment. He also sent emails to the FBI disinformation front group, FFCHS, several times shortly before the shooting. (For those unfamiliar with FFCHS, see the page of this website devoted to that organization.)
A whole bunch of interesting facts and questions surround the shooting – explained in detail here. That list of interesting facts keeps growing.
Last week, Politico reported that a local NBC news journalist in Washington D.C., Scott MacFarlane, received an email which the U.S. Navy sent to him by accident.
The internal email – from the Navy’s FOIA (Freedom of Information Act) office – outlined the strategy which they planned to use to limit the amount of information released to MacFarlane, who had filed a FOIA request for internal Navy memos sent on the day of the shooting.
MacFarlane tweeted about the incident with this message:
“EPIC FAILURE- U.S. Navy accidentally sends reporter its strategy memo for dodging his FOIA request”
He included this screenshot of the email.
Click on the image to enlarge.
The most charitable analysis would be that this was simply routine “cover your ass” protocol for a government entity seeking to avoid embarrassing revelations about its incompetent management of security at a naval facility.
I know a little bit about this stuff incidentally, because I worked in the security industry and I was also a sailor in the U.S. Navy.
At least one thing is clear: some reporters in the mainstream news media are still curious about the shooting. Stay tuned.
January 7, 2014
The activists who exposed the FBI’s Cointelpro operations have come forward
This morning’s New York Times features an article and video report about the previously-anonymous activists who broke into an FBI office in 1971 to seize the secret documents which exposed the infamous Cointelpro operations.
As the subsequent “Church Committee” Congressional investigations revealed, the FBI had committed numerous crimes against Americans – including slander, black bag jobs, warrantless electronic surveillance, blackmail, spreading disinformation by media manipulation and propaganda, infiltrating political groups, interfering with the judicial process, orchestrating acts of violence, and conducting overt surveillance (stalking).
Of the eight activists who participated in the break-in, five decided to reveal their identities, and three have chosen to remain anonymous. Of the five who decided to go public with their stories, one – William Davidon – died late last year.
The others are Keith Forsyth, John and Bonnie Raines, and Bob Williamson – heroes all.
Mr. and Mrs. Raines “said they felt a kinship toward [Edward] Snowden” – the NSA whistle-blower.
According to the late Ted L. Gunderson, who was a high-level official in the FBI during the Cointelpro era, the current phenomenon of “gang stalking” is a continuation of the Cointelpro operations in a more sophisticated form.
A new film about the break-in, called “1971” is in the works. Apparently, a release date has not been announced yet.
Current FBI Director says the activists who exposed Cointelpro should have been prosecuted.
When speaking to reporters on 9 January, FBI Director James Comey said that the activists who broke into the FBI office in 1971 should have been prosecuted if they had been caught before the statute of limitations expired.
Comey did not mention anything about whether the FBI agents who perpetrated the numerous crimes against Americans during the Cointelpro era should also have been prosecuted.
A quote from one of the activists who exposed Cointelpro
Everyone should pay very close attention to this quote from the above-referenced NY Times article. It has obvious relevance to the current version of Cointelpro (“gang stalking”). Activist Keith Forsyth explained why they felt the FBI office break-in was necessary:
“When you talked to people outside the movement about what the FBI was doing, nobody wanted to believe it.”
January 6, 2014
Kill the beast before it grows even bigger
Anyone with first-hand knowledge of the criminal nature of America’s rogue counterintelligence operations must sometimes wonder if others really understand the depth of corruption in the U.S. government.
Some people do understand.
Chris Hedges is one of those people. A journalist at truthdig, Hedges regularly excoriates the political establishment and its enforcers. Moreover, he does not pretend that the police state tendencies of the government can be curbed by playing a game that is heavily rigged by those in power.
Pundits and political leaders who lament the dysfunctional nature of American government are never in short supply, but their prescriptions are usually along the lines of “starting a national dialogue” or “studying ways to reform the system.” Hedges says Americans should take to the streets.
“The structures of the corporate state must be torn down. Its security apparatus must be destroyed. And those who defend corporate totalitarianism, including the leaders of the two major political parties, fatuous academics, pundits and a bankrupt press, must be driven from the temples of power. Mass street protests and prolonged civil disobedience are our only hope. A failure to rise up—which is what the corporate state is counting upon—will see us enslaved.”
Secret domestic surveillance and policing programs are not easily reined-in once they become entrenched. All industries try to protect their interests, but “national security” agencies and contractors have powerful unique tactical and political weapons at their disposal. Hedges suggests that is probably unwise for Americans to wait until things become much worse before pushing back.
“Any state that has the capacity to monitor all its citizenry, any state that has the ability to snuff out factual public debate through control of information, any state that has the tools to instantly shut down all dissent is totalitarian. Our corporate state may not use this power today. But it will use it if it feels threatened by a population made restive by its corruption, ineptitude and mounting repression. The moment a popular movement arises—and one will arise—that truly confronts our corporate masters, our venal system of total surveillance will be thrust into overdrive.”
January 5, 2014
America’s secret police and the “mosaic” theory
For most Americans, the term “secret police” is associated with totalitarian states, but any police force which operates with a high level of secrecy can be fairly assigned that label.
That the FBI is a secret police agency is an objective fact. No one familiar with the FBI would dispute that the agency is secretive, although opinions vary about the scope and legitimacy of its secrecy.
An article last week on Huffington Post by Matt Sledge explained that the New York City Police Department has adopted a tactic used frequently by the FBI to justify its lack of transparency. Last month, NYPD denied a request for information about its budget (the money it gets from American taxpayers) based – apparently, though not explicitly – on the “mosaic” theory.
That legal concept holds that even a piece of seemingly innocuous information can be legally kept secret from the public because America’s enemies could piece together multiple bits of such information to form a picture (just as one creates a mosaic artwork) and thereby gain knowledge of national security secrets.
Incremental expansions of police powers (always in the name of “security”) such as the one now being asserted by NYPD pose a real threat to freedom. Americans should be careful to avoid becoming a nation of boiled frogs.
January 4, 2014
European Parliament report on “Technologies of Political Control”
On Wednesday, Cryptome summarized the lessons from the secret NSA documents revealed earlier in the week at the annual conference of the European computer hackers association, Chaos Computer Club.
The documents – part of the data taken by NSA whistle-blower Edward Snowden – show some of the ways the NSA hacks computers and phones. Newly-revealed capabilities and methods include such things as hacking Wi-Fi signals from as far as 8 miles away, creating fake cell phone towers to spy on phone calls and text messages, and intercepting computers and phones during their shipment to customers so the NSA can implant hardware which enables the NSA to simply bypass normal security measures.
You can view the details – including photos and diagrams of all the computer spy gear – in this video of Jacob Appelbaum’s presentation at the conference. Appelbaum has been a target of psychological operations by goons from the U.S. intelligence community for his activism – as described in my 24 December post below.
As the folks at Cryptome noted, cyber-security for citizens preyed upon by powerful secret agencies requires much more than technical measures such as firewalls and encryption. It also requires countering things like backdoor hardware installations, bribery, political propaganda, and counterintelligence infiltrations.
Of particular interest to me in the Cryptome post was not so much the latest spy technology leaks, but rather a link to a 1998 report by a technology directorate of the European Union.
“An Appraisal of Technologies of Political Control” is a working draft report which examined how advancements in technology are exploited and abused as weapons of political control.
A range of issues relevant to counterintelligence subversion (gang stalking tactics are a form of counterintelligence subversion) are covered in the document, including the militarization of police forces, the use of non-lethal weapons for interrogation and torture, the use of psychological torture, the proliferation of surveillance and weapon technology, and the exploitation of such trends by private enterprises.
This excerpt from the report’s conclusion offers a “big picture” view of the threats posed by these developments:
“With proper accountability and regulation, some of the technologies discussed above do have a legitimate law enforcement function; without such democratic controls they provide powerful tools of oppression. The unchecked vertical and horizontal proliferation of the technologies of political control described in this report, present a powerful threat to civil liberties in Europe in the [21st] century, particularly if the political context of freedoms of expression changes in the next century as many times as it has in the last.
Whilst there are sufficient real abuses of power by the police, internal security and intelligence agencies to keep the conspiracy theorists busy for the foreseeable future, technological and decision drift will have an equal if not more powerful role to play if current trends develop unchecked. The real threat to civil liberties and human rights in the future, is as likely to arise from an incremental erosion of civil liberties, than it is from some conscious plan. The rate of such erosion is speeding up and is rapidly being fuelled by the pace of innovation in the technology of political control. An arsenal of new weapons and technologies of political control has already been developed or lies waiting on the horizon for a suitable opportunity to find useful work.”
January 2, 2014
The Washington establishment versus the American people
Today’s broadcast of Jake Tapper’s show on CNN featured a lively debate between journalist Glenn Greenwald and government shill Ruth Marcus about whistle-blower Edward Snowden.
Exchanges such as this one give the impression that even the apologists for the U.S. intelligence community realize deep down that they are defending a bunch of lying weasels.
If you can help expose the use of illegal counterintelligence operations against American citizens by U.S. intelligence and law enforcement agencies and their private contractors, please do so. America needs more patriots like Daniel Ellsberg, Edward Snowden, Jeremy Hammond, Barrett Brown, Russell Tice, William Binney, Ray McGovern, Thomas Drake, Frank Serpico, Thomas Tamm, Hugh Thompson, Jr., and William C. Davidon.