Justifying the Unjustifiable: Deconstructing the Lies of the NSA

GlobalResearchTV - “As the public finally becomes outraged over the NSA’s illegal spying, members of government and the corporate media wage an information war to misdirect that anger to issues of less importance. To counteract this, a bold new citizen-led initiative to nullify the NSA is now gaining momentum around the United States…”

 

Americans are “outraged” by the NSA’s illegal spying, huh? That’s interesting…

America’s Private Sector Army

Prior to the Iraq war, most people wouldn’t have heard of the private military companies (PMCs) that provide their services to the USA. Then came the the headlines, thick and fast, as the heavy involvement of PMCs such as Blackwater led to controversy. 

Excerpts, The Kernel - “The number of contractors used is staggering. In 2010 there were 94,413 contractors in Afghanistan, compared with 91,600 US troops.

MERCENARIES IN EVERYTHING BUT NAME

Most PMCs provide logistical support, but one stands out above all others: Blackwater. Described by some as a “private army”, they differ from modern day military units such as the British Army’s Brigade of Gurkhas and the French Foreign Legion, in that they are an autonomous company providing military services. Mercenaries in everything but name. Blackwater in particular stands out for their boots-on-the ground provision of “security guards” who look, smell and operate like any other combat soldier.

Blackwater, now called Academi, became known for a string of controversial incidents involving its personnel. Now that Middle Eastern occupations are winding down and court cases have been settled, Blackwater has managed to slip under the radar again. But it still exists, albeit with a new name, and is as influential as ever.

In the sixteen years of its existence, Blackwater has changed the face of modern warfare. How did they do it, what are they doing now and what does their continued existence mean for the future?

In explaining his vision for Blackwater, its founder Erik Prince famously stated:

“We are trying to do for the national security apparatus what FedEx did for the Postal Service.” 

Blackwater started out by offering training services to the military and landed a major contract to train Navy personnel following the 2000 bombing of USS Cole of the coast of Yemen.

With their reputation established, Blackwater began to hoover up government contracts as the War on Terror progressed. At first they provided security to secret CIA bases, then they became the default private security force for the raft of diplomats and State Department employees who found themselves involved in occupied Iraq. Blackwater proudly remind people that “not one State Department employee was killed while we were protecting them”. No officials may have been killed but a number of innocent Iraqis did, at the barrel of Blackwater guns.

The US military has long had a reputation for financial ineptitude when it come to hardware acquisition. It’s a reputation that has persisted with their procurement of contract services. At the height of the Iraq war, sergeants in the military were getting paid one-sixth of their counterparts from Blackwater. This problem of capitalism colliding with patriotism was so serious that Defense Secretary Robert Gates considered asking US troops to sign a non-compete clause…

…The largest incident branded on Blackwater’s reputation is what has become known as The Blackwater Baghdad shootings. On September sixteenth 2007, Blackwater military contractors shot and killed seventeen Iraqi civilians in Nisour Square, Baghdad…

“They became a symbol of what was seen as an occupying force. They are always heavily armed with machine-guns, and wear body armour and wraparound sunglasses. Usually they are beefy men with goatees, covered in tattoos. They swagger around like something out of a movie. Their presence here has been deeply damaging.”

Blackwater has become a destination of choice for ex-public servants looking for a cushy retirement, resulting in the company having even stronger ties to the centres of American power post-Iraq than pre-Iraq. The board of directors now includes Bobby Ray Inman, the former head of the National Security Agency and Jack Quinn, the former White House Counsel to President Bill Clinton. 

Lessons have learned by both the Government and private companies from their flirtation over the last couple of decades and the legacy will have repercussions on future conflicts. The Government has found a way to patch up their military personnel shortcomings with off-the-shelf and adaptable solutions: no need for the tedium of training youngsters and paying out pension plans.

By buying up experienced Army personnel, Blackwater have made themselves indispensable as a training institution for America’s elite troops. And next time the US goes gung-ho into another country? The contractors will be ready. Academi have developed and manufactured their own infantry mobility vehicle called The Grizzly APC. They were too late to the military hardware party this time around but they have all the pieces in place to take an even greater role in the USA’s next major conflict.” Full Article on The Kernel

 

 

They Proved Him Right: FBI Interrogated Man After Comment About ‘Police State’ on Facebook

Police State USA
Fri, 27 Sep 2013 

SOTT.net - “A man says that within hours of making an impassioned post on Facebook, he was being interrogated by police and the FBI.

Blaine Cooper, 33, contacted policestateusa.com with a concerning story about how his sentiments posted on Facebook had drawn the attention of the federal government. He showed me the comment and told me that within 24-hours of posting it, he was being contacted by the police and FBI.

His colorful comment was in reference to what he believes is an “American Police State,” in which the power of the federal government is growing in a direction which may one day lead people to fight back.

Cooper, who is training to be a wild land fire fighter, said that on August 23, he was contacted by Officer Jason Kuafman of the Prescott Valley Police Department and was told that he needed to come to the police station for an interview with the FBI.

He complied with the request for an interview, which lasted 45 minutes with federal agents present. He was released after apparently being determined to not be a threat.

They had every Facebook post I had ever made in a huge file, along with all my wife’s information, and parent’s information,” Cooper told policestateusa.com.

Cooper said that he was told that without “defusing the situation” by complying with the interview, his house might have been raided.

“The FBI made mention they came to question me so they didn’t have to kick in my door,” Cooper told policestateusa.com.” Full Story

FBI Calls Half of Populace With 9/11 Doubts Potential Terrorists

Digital Journal – “The FBI is instructing local police departments and “communities against terrorism” to consider anyone who harbors “conspiracy theories” about 9/11 to be a potential terrorist, in a circular released to local police departments.

The memo thus adds 9/11-official-story skeptics to a growing list of targets described by federal law enforcement to be security threats, such as those who express “libertarian philosophies,” “Second Amendment-oriented views,” interest in “self-sufficiency,” “fears of Big Brother or big government,” and “Declarations of Constitutional rights and civil liberties.”

A newly released national poll shows that 48 percent of Americans either have some doubts about the official account of 9/11, or do not believe it at all.

The FBI circular entitled “Potential Indicators of Terrorist Activities Related to Sleepers” says that people who should be ‘considered suspicious’ of possible involvement in “terrorist activity” include those who hold the “attitude” described as ” Conspiracy theories about Westerners.” The circular continues: “e.g. (sic) the CIA arranged for 9/11 to legitimize the invasion of foreign lands…

…Other federal law enforcement agencies have been criticized for sweeping characterizations of potential terrorists, which demonize Constitutionally protected activity. In 2011, 18-year law enforcement veteran James Wesley Rawles warned that the Department of Homeland Security was being trained to consider as potential terrorists, among other people, those who had expressed “libertarian philosophies, “Second Amendment-oriented views,” “Self-sufficiency (stockpiling food, ammo, hand tools, medical supplies,) “Fear of economic collapse,” “fears of Big Brother or big government,” and “Declarations of Constitutional rights and civil liberties.” Since Hurricane Katrina, food stockpiling consultants and merchants have reported greater-than-ever activity and interest in storing long-term supplies of non-perishable food and water supplies.” Read Full Story on Digital Journal

 

Nevada Man Suing City of Henderson For Third Amendment Violations

A Nevada man is suing the city of Henderson and its police under the rarely-used Third Amendment, claiming that they unconstitutionally arrested him for obstruction of justice when he refused to let them commandeer his home.

SRA Dave Orth (L) and SRA Clarence Tolliver (R...

(Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Courthouse News ServiceJuly 03, 2013- “LAS VEGAS (CN) – Henderson police arrested a family for refusing to let officers use their homes as lookouts for a domestic violence investigation of their neighbors, the family claims in court.
Anthony Mitchell and his parents Michael and Linda Mitchell sued the City of Henderson, its Police Chief Jutta Chambers, Officers Garret Poiner, Ronald Feola, Ramona Walls, Angela Walker, and Christopher Worley, and City of North Las Vegas and its Police Chief Joseph Chronister, in Federal Court.
Henderson, pop. 257,000, is a suburb of Las Vegas.
The Mitchell family’s claim includes Third Amendment violations, a rare claim in the United States. The Third Amendment prohibits quartering soldiers in citizens’ homes in times of peace without the consent of the owner.
“On the morning of July 10th, 2011, officers from the Henderson Police Department responded to a domestic violence call at a neighbor’s residence,” the Mitchells say in the complaint.
It continues: “At 10:45 a.m. defendant Officer Christopher Worley (HPD) contacted plaintiff Anthony Mitchell via his telephone. Worley told plaintiff that police needed to occupy his home in order to gain a ‘tactical advantage’ against the occupant of the neighboring house. Anthony Mitchell told the officer that he did not want to become involved and that he did not want police to enter his residence. Although Worley continued to insist that plaintiff should leave his residence, plaintiff clearly explained that he did not intend to leave his home or to allow police to occupy his home. Worley then ended the phone call.
Mitchell claims that defendant officers, including Cawthorn and Worley and Sgt. Michael Waller then “conspired among themselves to force Anthony Mitchell out of his residence and to occupy his home for their own use.” (Waller is identified as a defendant in the body of the complaint, but not in the heading of it.)
The complaint continues: “Defendant Officer David Cawthorn outlined the defendants’ plan in his official report: ‘It was determined to move to 367 Evening Side and attempt to contact Mitchell. If Mitchell answered the door he would be asked to leave. If he refused to leave he would be arrested for Obstructing a Police Officer. If Mitchell refused to answer the door, force entry would be made and Mitchell would be arrested.’”
At a few minutes before noon, at least five defendant officers “arrayed themselves in front of plaintiff Anthony Mitchell’s house and prepared to execute their plan,” the complaint states.
It continues: “The officers banged forcefully on the door and loudly commanded Anthony Mitchell to open the door to his residence.
“Surprised and perturbed, plaintiff Anthony Mitchell immediately called his mother (plaintiff Linda Mitchell) on the phone, exclaiming to her that the police were beating on his front door.
“Seconds later, officers, including Officer Rockwell, smashed open plaintiff Anthony Mitchell’s front door with a metal ram as plaintiff stood in his living room.
“As plaintiff Anthony Mitchell stood in shock, the officers aimed their weapons at Anthony Mitchell and shouted obscenities at him and ordered him to lie down on the floor.
“Fearing for his life, plaintiff Anthony Mitchell dropped his phone and prostrated himself onto the floor of his living room, covering his face and hands.
“Addressing plaintiff as ‘asshole’, officers, including Officer Snyder, shouted conflicting orders at Anthony Mitchell, commanding him to both shut off his phone, which was on the floor in front of his head, and simultaneously commanding him to ‘crawl’ toward the officers.
“Confused and terrified, plaintiff Anthony Mitchell remained curled on the floor of his living room, with his hands over his face, and made no movement.
“Although plaintiff Anthony Mitchell was lying motionless on the ground and posed no threat, officers, including Officer David Cawthorn, then fired multiple ‘pepperball’ rounds at plaintiff as he lay defenseless on the floor of his living room. Anthony Mitchell was struck at least three times by shots fired from close range, injuring him and causing him severe pain.” (Parentheses in complaint.)
Officers then arrested him for obstructing a police officer, searched the house and moved furniture without his permission and set up a place in his home for a lookout, Mitchell says in the complaint.
He says they also hurt his pet dog for no reason whatsoever: “Plaintiff Anthony Mitchell’s pet, a female dog named ‘Sam,’ was cowering in the corner when officers smashed through the front door. Although the terrified animal posed no threat to officers, they gratuitously shot it with one or more pepperball rounds. The panicked animal howled in fear and pain and fled from the residence. Sam was subsequently left trapped outside in a fenced alcove without access to water, food, or shelter from the sun for much of the day, while temperatures outside soared to over 100 degrees Fahrenheit.” Full Story Here

Echoes Of Darkness

StormCloudsGathering“The powers that be shredded the constitution and took you into a series of wars that have left countless civilians dead based on this event. You owe it to your children and grand children to take another look at it…”

A Shocking Reminder

Not new by any means…but still as relevant today as it was when it was released…

Building The Global Special Operation Forces Partnership

This is…well…unnerving…and chilling.

 

ISOF

ISOF (Photo credit: United States Forces – Iraq (Inactive))

 

(May 2012) Military assault demonstrations at the ISOF 2012 conference in Tampa bay, Florida. The participating SOF teams came from 10 allied nations: Australia, Canada, Brazil, Colombia, Jordan, Norway, Poland, Thailand, the United Arab Emirates, and included American SEALs, Green Berets, Air Force Combat Controllers, and US Marines. This year ISOF’s theme is “Building the Global SOF Partnership.” This is composed of mutually supporting partners working to identify and preemptively address problems, and helping to defeat the appeal of violent extremism.

 

 

 

Widower Harassed By State Moments After Wife Dies

“Mahaffey asked Vernal city officials and police administrators why officers would search his home without a warrant. He said he was told the Utah Controlled Substances Act provides authority for the search…”

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My mother died at home and we had a house full of prescription pills when she passed away. There was no need for officers to be sent in to deal with the drugs…the hospice nurse and I took care of rounding them all up and removing them from our home an hour or so AFTER my mom’s body was removed from the house. This whole story is just appalling…

And is just another example of the police-state noose that is being tightened around all of our necks…all in the name of “Safety” of course..!

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Excerpt from Deseret News“A man says Vernal police disrupted an intimate moment of mourning with his deceased wife of 58 years when they searched his house for her prescription medication without a warrant within minutes of her death.

Barbara Alice Mahaffey died of colon cancer in her bedroom last May. Ben D. Mahaffey, 80, said he was distraught and trying to make sure his wife’s body would be taken to the funeral home with dignity, when he says officers insisted he help them look for the drugs.

“I was holding her hand saying goodbye when all the intrusion happened,” he told the Deseret News.

Barbara Mahaffey died at 12:35 a.m. with Mahaffey, a Navy medic in the Korean War, and his friend, an EMT, at her side. In addition to police, a mortician and a hospice worker arrived at the home about 12:45 a.m., Mahaffey said. He said he doesn’t know how police came to be there.

“I was indignant to think you can’t even have a private moment. All these people were there and they’re not concerned about her or me. They’re concerned about the damn drugs. Isn’t that something?” Mahaffey said.

Mahaffey said he was treated as if he were going to sell the painkillers, which included OxyContin, oxycodone and morphine, on the street.

“I had no interest in the drugs,” he said. “I’m no addict.” Full Story Here

A Death Sentence…For The Marijuana That Wasn’t There

This story happened over a year ago but I decided to post it in order to highlight (again!) the dismal failure the ‘War On Drugs’ has been – as well as the dangers of law enforcement continuing to use SWAT teams to raid the homes of US citizens.  What happened to that pesky notion about people being INNOCENT until PROVEN guilty? Apparently it has been swept aside as government agencies get more and more federal funding to use on gadgets, gear & guns.

FBI SWAT in Atlanta gaining entry into a build...

FBI SWAT in Atlanta gaining entry into a building during a training exercise. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The mere suspicion that a natural plant might be in a home has now become justifiable cause for gunning down citizens and little thought is given to whether or not there might be children, pets…or innocent civilians taken out in the process. To call these *mistakes* anything less than what they are…cold blooded murder…is just a slap in the face to all of the victims and their families.

On May 19, 2011   Former Marine, Jose Guerena,  age 26, was killed  murdered in his Tucson home during a drug  pointless raid. Officers pounded him with 71 rounds as they burst through the door of his home. No drugs were ever found. His family helplessly watched as their loved one was shot to death by over-zealous, over-armed and UNDER trained officers…

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Knock-Knock!

I’ve made other posts about No-Knock raids in the past but I am doing so again because nothing is being done to stop or prevent them. How can we consider ourselves free so long as agents of the government can beat down our doors…shoot our children, our grandparents and our family pets…any time they feel like it?

The only purpose for which power can be rightfully exercised over any member of a civilized community, against his will, is to prevent harm to others. His own good, either physical or moral, is not a sufficient warrant.  ~ John Stuart Mill~

I suppose that “No Knock” raids are for our own good, right? Police must protect us from ourselves and prevent us from making choices about how we choose to live. Raiding the homes of innocent people or of people who choose to grow and consume *illegal* plants must be for our own good!

Now, if police happen to bust down the wrong door, we shouldn’t be upset because obviously, mistakes happen in the heat of enforcing the prohibition on freedom. And if they happen to shoot your dog, well…remember, they are only ever doing their jobs. And no one is perfect…

Excerpts from Reason.com:

Fred Skinner was eating a piece of toast when police from three different agencies burst through his front door with guns drawn, put the 76-year-old in handcuffs, and began ransacking his house in search of drugs. Minutes later, one of the officers noticed a piece of mail on Skinner’s table. The name on it didn’t match the name for the suspected drug dealer the officers were after. The officers asked Skinner if the name on the mail was his. When Skinner said yes, the officer shouted “Wrong house,” and the entire raid team headed out the way they’d come, without apologizing or explaining themselves. They were, according to a department spokesperson, in too much of a rush to get next door, where their suspect was supposedly located…” 

What the police had to say about the raid -

It was a mistake,” Auburn Police Chief Gary Giannotta told WSYR-TV. “We’re no different than anyone else. We make mistakes just like everybody else. We try to make sure our information is as current and as reliable as possible. Once in a while we get it wrong. When we get it wrong, we make it right.” 

If raids on the homes of innocent senior citizens doesn’t make your blood boil,

Check out this website, Dogs That Cops Killed

“If a widespread pattern of [knock-and-announce] violations were shown . . . there would be reason for grave concern.”

~ Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy, in Hudson v. Michigan, June 15, 2006.

According to Radley Balko,  as many as 40,000 of these raids happen every year.

Interactive Map of Botched Raids from Cato Institute

As long as the “War on Drugs” is allowed to continue, no one is safe in their homes. If “No-Knock” raids aren’t the ultimate display of the unconstitutional actions committed by our government then I don’t know what is.

Droning For Dollars

Since the ‘Powers That Be’ recently gave themselves the green-light on the use of drones in the US, one has to wonder who might be profiting from the newly enlarged ‘drone industry’…not to mention, who is using the drones – and for what purposes, exactly?

A MQ-9 Reaper unmanned aerial vehicle prepares...

The Reaper has the ability to carry both precision-guided bombs and air-to-ground missiles. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

As with most of our new technological capabilities, the potential for abuse seems rather great. I personally wouldn’t trust my government to watch my cat and I certainly want no part of them watching ME. Beyond that, I don’t want any corporation to be trusted as responsible enough to be operating drones over my head…and seriously, there is no reason on earth for the local university to be screwing around testing these things over our community.

 Is There Is there a drone in your neighbourhood? Rise of spy planes exposed after FAA is forced to reveal 63 launch sites across U.S.

Excerpts from Daily Mail UK – “There are at least 63 active drone sites around the U.S, federal authorities have been forced to reveal following a landmark Freedom of Information lawsuit.

The unmanned planes – some of which may have been designed to kill terror suspects – are being launched from locations in 20 states.

Most of the active drones are deployed from military installations, enforcement agencies and border patrol teams, according to the Federal Aviation Authority…”

“...But, astonishingly, 19 universities and colleges are also registered as owners of what are officially known as unmanned aerial vehicles.

It is thought that many of institutions, which include Cornell, the University of Colorado, Georgia Tech, and Eastern Gateway Community College, are developing drone technology…

…The FAA has confirmed that there were about 300 active COAs and that the agency has issued about 700-750 authorizations since the program began in 2006.

But this information does not reveal how many are owned, for example, by Miami Dade Police Department…”

So, who owns drones and how close might they be to YOU?

Read the full article on Daily Mail UK to find out.

I was disturbed to see names of institutions in close proximity to my own home on the list…*shudders*

Just a few launch spots out here in my neck of the woods…

 New Mexico State University Physical Sciences Laboratory (NMSU-PSL) 
New Mexico Tech

  **The maps in the original Daily Mail UK are very interesting and it’s well worth the time to click over and take a look at them in full size.**

Read more: Daily Mail UK

Related Links & News:

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From Republic Report

Rep. McKeon Praises Drone Manufacturers At Conference After They Lavish His Wife With Donations

“McKeon is Chairman of the House Armed Services Committee, and received $339,000 from the defense industry himself in 2010, so it’s reasonable to suspect that arms manufacturers and others are donating to his wife’s state race in order to please him.

Now, it appears that these donations are paying off. This morning at the Omni Shoreham Hotel in Washington, D.C., Rep. McKeon delivered a “Special Address” for the Association for Unmanned Vehicle Systems International(AUVSI), a drone industry lobbying organization. Republic Report gained access to the event — which hosted hundreds of attendees from the unmanned aerial systems industry, including military drone  manufacturers like Lockheed Martin and Northrop Grumman.

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With Liberty & Texting For All…

The article below is another example and reason why we should beware of letting the government have too big of a role in our lives – especially when they claim to be acting in the interest of our safety and personal well-being. It should also serve as a warning of the dangerous connections between our government and corporate interests. When they are completely one and the same, how we will hope to prevent a ban like this one from happening here in the US?

Africa may seem like a world away but note the similarities between the problems in their system…and the problems in ours…

Excerpts From BBC Article, DR Congo election: Deaf anger at ban on texting

By Thomas Hubert

Published 14 December 2011

Deaf people in the Democratic Republic of Congo say a ban on texting threatens their lives because they no longer receive warnings of violence.

The government banned SMS messages more than a week ago to preserve “public order” following disputed elections.

President Joseph Kabila was declared the winner, but his main rival, Etienne Tshisekedi, rejected the result. Last month’s elections were the second since the 1998-2003 war which claimed about four million lives.

Four people were killed in the capital, Kinshasa, after Mr Kabila’s victory was announced. He is due to be inaugurated for a second term next week. The official results gave him 49% of the vote against 32% for Mr Tshisekedi.

The opposition says they plan to organise mass protests, alleging the polls had been rigged.

According to the Kinshasa-based African Association for the Defence Human Rights (Asadho), the texting ban has affected all Congolese people.

It said text messages were an essential tool for communities to maintain security, as they could spread alerts cheaply, quickly and discreetly to a large number of people who may be in danger.

Other human rights groups have warned that the ban could cost human lives in isolated regions with poor mobile phone reception, as emergency services could only be alerted to rebel attacks via text message.

Prison Industry ‘Banking On Bondage’

The Spoils of Mass Incarceration

ACLU – The United States imprisons more people — both per capita and in absolute terms — than any other nation in the world, including Russia, China, and Iran. Over the past four decades, imprisonment in the United States has increased explosively, spurred by criminal laws that impose steep sentences and curtail the opportunity to earn probation and parole. The current incarceration rate deprives record numbers of individuals of their liberty, disproportionately affects people of color, and has at best a minimal effect on public safety. Meanwhile, the crippling cost of imprisoning increasing numbers of Americans saddles government budgets with rising debt and exacerbates the current fiscal crises confronting states across the nation.

Leading private prison companies essentially admit that their business model depends on high rates of incarceration. For example, in a 2010 Annual Report filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission, Corrections Corporation of America (CCA), the largest private prison company, stated: “The demand for our facilities and services could be adversely affected by . . . leniency in conviction or parole standards and sentencing practices . . . .”

Click to read full report in pdf -

As incarceration rates skyrocket, the private prison industry expands at exponential rates, holding ever more people in its prisons and jails,

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