Posts Tagged ‘FBI’

New study confirms: domestic terror prosecutions contrived

Monday, June 9, 2014 at 11:08 am by

Last week, the National Coalition to Protect Civil Freedoms (NCPCF) and Project SALAM (Support And Legal Advocacy for Muslims) released a 175-page study of the government’s prosecution strategy in domestic terrorism cases. The study, Inventing Terrorists: The Lawfare of Preemptive Prosecution, reveals that the era of J. Edgar Hoover may be less far removed from the Bureau’s operations than most observers realize. The introduction explains that:

[T]he war on terror has been largely a charade designed to make the American public believe that a terrorist army is loose in the U.S., when the truth is that most of the people convicted of terrorism-related crimes posed no danger to the U.S. and were entrapped by a preventive strategy known as preemptive prosecution.

This week, they will host a press conference to discuss their discoveries on on Thursday, June 12 at 11 a.m. in New York City at the Center for Constitutional Rights. Anyone interested is invited to attend.

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Are agencies such as the NSA and FBI actually useful?

Monday, April 28, 2014 at 12:46 pm by

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“The idea of our nation’s intelligence services being necessary for security is a bit of a misnomer. The only security that the intelligence particularly protect is the job security of their officials and the members of Congress who write their checks,” said BORDC’s executive director, Shahid Buttar. (more…)

The cost of liberty? Or what will cost us our liberty?

Monday, April 28, 2014 at 9:30 am by

Lady_Liberty_New_YorkThe 9/11 incident and subsequent terrorist attacks have left the American people living in a perpetual state of fear. As a result, the public has largely deferred to those actions that the government has deemed as “essential” to national security. The proliferation of already contested, by the public and legally, practices such as racial profiling, deportation of individuals without due process, and the militarization of the police – may appear to be promoting the public welfare but it can be seen that they are imposing too high of a price. In exchange for the perception of safety, the people are sacrificing the civil rights and liberties that American ideals rely upon.

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If J. Edgar had biometrics: state repression isn’t new, but technology raises the stakes

Saturday, April 19, 2014 at 10:44 am by

Original commentary published on November 13, 2013 on PrivacySOS blog.

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Some of us are very worried. If you regularly read this blog, you are likely one of the worriers.

We worry because we are surveillance state watchers, because we are people concerned about the degree to which US culture has been warped by fear-driven narratives that cast Muslims as the enemy in a never-ending, borderless ‘war on terror’. We worry because we see state institutions, seemingly hell-bent on shredding the Bill of Rights, deploy that fear in the service of any number of anti-democratic horrors: extrajudicial assassination, indefinite detention, secret law, mass suspicionless surveillance, the militarization of the police.

An authoritarian impulse to control, monitor, and oppress appears to guide the hands of our most powerful agencies – those secretive, three letter organizations that suck up increasingly substantial quantities of our hard earned money, with little besides repression and misery to show for it.

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Secrecy and manipulation: On the FBI’s propaganda war and the shaping of public opinion

Friday, April 18, 2014 at 12:13 pm by

Original commentary from Privacy SOS blog published on Wednesday, April 16.

A4490-20Longtime FBI director J. Edgar Hoover was obsessed with the public’s perception of him and his enemies. As a result of this obsession, an agent could do no wrong greater than publicly embarrass the director or the bureau. Hoover knew that image and representation were more important than reality, so he worked hard to hide the truth from the public and his congressional purse-string-holders, and spin fabulous tales starring himself and his sharp-dressing agents as great American heroes.

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FBI plans to have 52 Million photos in its NGI face recognition database by next year

Monday, April 14, 2014 at 10:45 am by

Original commentary by Jennifer Lynch published April 14, 2014 on EFF Deeplinks Blog

FBI NGI Face Recognition IllustrationNew documents released by the FBI show that the Bureau is well on its way toward its goal of a fully operational face recognition database by this summer.

EFF received these records in response to our Freedom of Information Act lawsuit for information on Next Generation Identification (NGI)—the FBI’s massive biometric database that may hold records on as much as one third of the U.S. population. The facial recognition component of this database poses real threats to privacy for all Americans.
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NSI program makes mass suspicion, surveillance, and profiling national standards

Saturday, April 12, 2014 at 9:25 am by

blog_governmentsurveillanceAfter receiving a great deal of public criticism about the NSA, the Obama administration and federal agencies have been forced to reform their mass surveillance programs. But it seems the federal government is proving to be adaptable, finding other ways and means of collecting massive amounts of data on innocent, law-abiding Americans. The National Suspicious Activity Reporting Initiative (NSI) is the new form of mass surveillance, and federal agencies as well as local law enforcement are partaking in it.
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Just salute and follow orders’: When secrecy and surveillance trump the rule of law

Tuesday, April 8, 2014 at 8:58 am by

Original commentary by John Whitehead, published March 31, 2014 on the Rutherford Institute blog.

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“The Secret Government is an interlocking network of official functionaries, spies, mercenaries, ex-generals, profiteers and superpatriots, who, for a variety of motives, operate outside the legitimate institutions of government. Presidents have turned to them when they can’t win the support of the Congress or the people, creating that unsupervised power so feared by the framers of our Constitution…”—Journalist Bill Moyers and White House press secretary under President Johnson (1988)

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How state secrecy protects government agencies from embarrassment, then and now

Thursday, March 27, 2014 at 9:37 am by

Original commentary published on Privacy SOS blog on March 24.

J. Edgar Hoover's obsession with secrecy is a legacy that scars present-day government agencies.

J. Edgar Hoover’s obsession with secrecy is a legacy that scars present-day government agencies.

Often when the government wants to keep something secret, it claims that transparency would endanger national security. We’ve been hearing a lot of this lately in light of the new information about the FBI and NSA’s surveillance activities disclosed to the press by former contractor Edward Snowden. The leaks have caused “grave harm” to national security and even US foreign policy, Snowden’s critics repeat over and over again.
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BORDC News Digest for 03/24/14

Monday, March 24, 2014 at 5:55 pm by

3/24, Dave Lindorff, CounterPunch, Dark Questions About a Deadly FBI Interrogation in Orlando

3/24, Chris Edwards, Townhall Finance, The Federal Spying Budget

3/23, Burgess Everett, POLITICO, Democrats have votes to release CIA report

3/21, Candice Bernd, AlterNet, From Tacoma to Texas, Hunger Strikers Challenge Private Immigration Detention Centers

3/21,AFP-JIJI, Japan Times, Intelligence officials deny U.S. is waging industrial espionage

3/21, Amy Goodman and Juan Gonzalez, AlterNet, Could the NSA Gain Ability to Record and Replay Every Call, Everywhere?