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Civil Liberties Media Articles
Excerpts of Key Civil Liberties Media Articles in Major Media


Below are highly revealing excerpts of important civil liberties articles reported in the media suggesting a major cover-up. Links are provided to the full articles on major media websites. If any link fails to function, read this webpage. These civil liberties articles are listed by article date. You can also explore the articles listed by order of importance or by date posted. By choosing to educate ourselves on these important issues and to spread the word, we can and will build a brighter future.

Note: Explore our full index to revealing excerpts of key major media news articles on several dozen engaging topics. And don't miss amazing excerpts from 20 of the most revealing news articles ever published.


Military given go-ahead to detain US terrorist suspects without trial
2011-12-15, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2011/dec/15/americans-face-guantanamo-detenti...

Barack Obama has abandoned a commitment to veto a new security law that allows the military to indefinitely detain without trial American terrorism suspects arrested on US soil who could then be shipped to Guantánamo Bay. Human rights groups accused the president of deserting his principles and disregarding the long-established principle that the military is not used in domestic policing. The legislation has also been strongly criticised by libertarians on the right angered at the stripping of individual rights for the duration of "a war that appears to have no end". The law ... effectively extends the battlefield in the "war on terror" to the US and applies the established principle that combatants in any war are subject to military detention. The law's critics describe it as a draconian piece of legislation that extends the reach of detention without trial to include US citizens arrested in their own country. "It's something so radical that it would have been considered crazy had it been pushed by the Bush administration," said Tom Malinowski of Human Rights Watch. "It establishes precisely the kind of system that the United States has consistently urged other countries not to adopt. At a time when the United States is urging Egypt, for example, to scrap its emergency law and military courts, this is not consistent."

Note: The implications of the passage of this bill to authorize the US military to carry out domestic arrest and imprisonment of US citizens have hardly been reported on by the major media. The defense authorization bill undermines protections established by the Bill of Rights and the Posse Comitatus Act against use of US military forces in domestic control and arrest. For further analysis of the implications of this legislation, click here and here.


Protests Boost Sales and Fears of Sonic Blaster
2011-12-12, ABC News/Associated Press
http://abcnews.go.com/US/wireStory/protests-boost-sales-fears-sonic-blaster-1...

Rather than batons or rubber bullets, some police departments have started using an intense beam of sound to manage protesters, but the annoying tone has drawn criticism from some who say it can cause permanent damage. More U.S. police and emergency-response agencies are using the so-called Long-Range Acoustic Devices ... for crowd control. The leading manufacturer, LRAD Corp. of San Diego, said the product was developed as a nonlethal option for military use. Some people who have been on the receiving end call the devices "sound cannons." A woman is suing the city of Pittsburgh claiming the piercing tone from a police blaster during the 2009 G-20 summit permanently damaged her hearing. There were reports that New York City police used the punishing tone on protesters. The devices were developed for the U.S. Navy. They have also been used to deter pirates from attacking cruise ships. The products range from a 15-pound, battery-operated, hand-held unit to a 320-pound device with a range of nearly 2 miles. Even the smallest unit, the LRAD 100X, emits as much as 137 decibels at 1 meter, which is louder than a jet takeoff at 100 meters.

Note: For key reports from reliable sources on so-called "non-lethal" weapons, click here.


Police employ Predator drone spy planes on home front
2011-12-10, Los Angeles Times
http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/nation/la-na-drone-arrest-20111211,0,...

Armed with a search warrant, Nelson County Sheriff Kelly Janke went looking for six missing cows on the Brossart family farm in [eastern North Dakota]. He called in reinforcements from the state Highway Patrol, a regional SWAT team, a bomb squad, ambulances and deputy sheriffs from three other counties. He also called in a Predator B drone. Sophisticated sensors under the nose helped pinpoint the three suspects and showed they were unarmed. Police rushed in and made the first known arrests of U.S. citizens with help from a Predator, the spy drone that has helped revolutionize modern warfare. But that was just the start. Local police say they have used two unarmed Predators based at Grand Forks Air Force Base to fly at least two dozen surveillance flights since June. The FBI and Drug Enforcement Administration have used Predators for other domestic investigations, officials said. The drones belong to U.S. Customs and Border Protection, which operates eight Predators on the country's northern and southwestern borders to search for illegal immigrants and smugglers. The previously unreported use of its drones to assist local, state and federal law enforcement has occurred without any public acknowledgment or debate.

Note: "Looking for six cows," the Sheriff called in "a regional SWAT team, a bomb squad, ambulances and deputy sheriffs from three other counties. He also called in a Predator B drone." Does that sound like a reasonable response to the problem of missing cows? Or could there be an agenda to establish aerial surveillance by drones as the norm in the US?


Can Congress Steal Your Constitutional Freedoms?
2011-12-01, Fox News
http://www.foxnews.com/opinion/2011/12/01/can-congress-steal-your-constitutio...

Can the president use the military to arrest anyone he wants, keep that person away from a judge and jury, and lock him up for as long as he wants? In the Senate’s dark and terrifying vision of the Constitution, he can. Last week ... the Senate Armed Services Committee decided to meet in secret. Behind closed doors, it drafted an amendment to a bill appropriating money for the Pentagon. The amendment would permit the president to use the military for law enforcement purposes in the United States. Essentially, this legislation would enable the president to divert from the criminal justice system, and thus to divert from the protections of the Constitution, any person he pleases. And that person, under this terrifying bill, would have no recourse to a judge to require the president either to file charges against him or to set him free. The Fifth Amendment to the Constitution says, “No person shall be … deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law.” Note, the Founders used the word “person.” Thus, the requirement of due process must be accorded to all human beings held by the government -- not just Americans, not just nice people, but all persons. If this legislation becomes law, it will be dangerous for anyone to be right when the government is wrong. It will be dangerous for all of us. Just consider what any president could get away with. Who would he make disappear first? Might it be his political opponents? Might it be you?

Note: The author of this op-ed, Andrew P. Napolitano, is a former judge of the Superior Court of New Jersey. His most recent book is It Is Dangerous to Be Right When the Government Is Wrong: The Case for Personal Freedom.


Senate rejects effort to strip detainee provision
2011-11-29, Boston Globe/Associated Press
http://articles.boston.com/2011-11-29/news/30455506_1_defense-bill-military-c...

The Senate on Tuesday rejected an effort to strip divisive provisions from a defense bill that deal with the capture and handling of suspected terrorists. “The provisions would dramatically change broad counterterrorism efforts by requiring law enforcement officials to step aside and ask the Department of Defense to take on a new role they are not fully equipped for and do not want,’’ said Sen. Mark Udall, D-Colo., who added that the legislation would make the military “police, judge and jailer.’’ His amendment would have taken out the sections on detainees and instead called for congressional hearings with Pentagon and administration officials on the issue. The bill would require military custody of a suspect deemed to be a member of al-Qaida or its affiliates. The vote came shortly after the weekly Republican and Democratic policy luncheons. A guest at the Republican session was former Vice President Dick Cheney, an advocate for harsh interrogation tactics against suspected U.S. enemies during his two terms in office. Defense Secretary Leon Panetta and FBI Director Robert Mueller have spelled out their opposition in letters to lawmakers. Mueller said Monday that because the legislation applies to people detained in the United States, it could disrupt ongoing international terrorism investigations.

Note: The implications of the Senate's vote to authorize the US military to carry out domestic arrest and imprisonment of US citizens have hardly been reported on by the major media. The defense authorization bill passed by the Senate undermines protections established by the Bill of Rights and the Posse Comitatus Act against use of US military forces in domestic control and arrest. The ACLU has issued an analysis; for further analysis of the implications of this legislation, click here and here.


The shocking truth about the crackdown on Occupy
2011-11-25, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/cifamerica/2011/nov/25/shocking-truth...

The violent police assaults across the US are no coincidence. Occupy has touched the third rail of our political class's venality. US citizens of all political persuasions are still reeling from images of unparallelled police brutality in a coordinated crackdown against peaceful OWS protesters in cities across the nation this past week. But just when Americans thought we had the picture – was this crazy police and mayoral overkill, on a municipal level, in many different cities? – the picture darkened. The New York Times reported that "New York cops have arrested, punched, whacked, shoved to the ground and tossed a barrier at reporters and photographers" covering protests. In New York, a state supreme court justice and a New York City council member were beaten up; in Berkeley, California, one of our greatest national poets, Robert Hass, was beaten with batons. The Mayor of Oakland acknowledged that the Department of Homeland Security had participated in an 18-city mayor conference call advising mayors on "how to suppress" Occupy protests. I noticed that rightwing pundits and politicians on the TV shows on which I was appearing were all on-message against OWS. Journalist Chris Hayes reported on a leaked memo that revealed lobbyists vying for an $850,000 contract to smear Occupy. Message coordination of this kind is impossible without a full-court press at the top. As the puzzle pieces fit together, they began to show coordination against OWS at the highest national levels.

Note: For key reports from reliable sources on the reasons why people nationwide are occupying their city centers in protest against the collusion between powerful corporate and government elites, click here.


G20 case reveals 'largest ever' police spy operation
2011-11-22, CBC News (Canada's Public Broadcasting Channel)
http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/story/2011/11/22/g20-police-operation.html

Police organizations across the country co-operated to spy on community organizations and activists in what the RCMP [Royal Canadian Mounted Police] called one of the largest domestic intelligence operations in Canadian history, documents reveal. Information about the extensive police surveillance in advance of last year's G8 and G20 meetings in southern Ontario comes from evidence presented in the case of 17 people accused of orchestrating street turmoil during the summits. Two undercover police officers ... spent 18 months infiltrating southern Ontario community groups ahead of the June 26-27, 2010, gathering of world leaders. They were part of a much larger so-called joint intelligence group (JIG) operation [which] employed more than 500 people at its peak. "The 2010 G8 summit in Huntsville ... will likely be subject to actions taken by criminal extremists motivated by a variety of radical ideologies," reads a JIG report. "The important commonality is that these ideologies ... place these individuals and/or organizations at odds with the status quo and the current distribution of power in society." The RCMP-led intelligence team made a series of presentations to private-sector corporations, including one to "energy sector stakeholders" in November 2011. Other corporations that received intelligence from police included Canada’s major banks, telecom firms, airlines, downtown property companies and other businesses seen to be vulnerable to the effects of summit protests.

Note: For lots more from major media sources on government attacks on civil liberties, click here.


News Organizations Complain About Treatment During Protests
2011-11-21, New York Times
http://mediadecoder.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/11/21/news-organizations-complain-...

A cross-section of 13 news organizations in New York City lodged complaints ... about the New York Police Department’s treatment of journalists covering the Occupy Wall Street movement. Separately, ten press clubs, unions and other groups that represent journalists called for an investigation and said they had formed a coalition to monitor police behavior going forward. [The] actions were prompted by a rash of incidents on Nov. 15, when police officers impeded and even arrested reporters during and after the evictions of Occupy Wall Street protesters from Zuccotti Park, the birthplace of the two-month-old movement. The news organizations said in a joint letter to the Police Department that officers had clearly violated their own procedures by threatening, arresting and injuring reporters and photographers. The letter said there were “numerous inappropriate, if not unconstitutional, actions and abuses” by the police against both “credentialed and noncredentialed journalists in the last few days.” The letter was written by George Freeman, vice president and assistant general counsel for The New York Times Company, and signed by representatives for The Associated Press, The New York Post, The Daily News, Thomson Reuters, Dow Jones & Company, and three local television stations, WABC, WCBS and WNBC. It was also signed by representatives for the National Press Photographers Association, New York Press Photographers Association, Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press, and the New York Press Club.

Note: For key reports from reliable sources on the reasons why people nationwide are occupying their city centers in protest against the collusion between powerful corporate and government elites, click here.


Occupy and the militarisation of policing protest
2011-11-03, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/cifamerica/2011/nov/03/occupy-militar...

Why, when protesters are peaceably exercising first amendment rights, is the machinery of counter-terrorism being mobilised? While riot police are not necessarily an everyday feature at any given protest, the sheer frequency with which we are witnessing their presence on city streets throughout the United States is enough to give average citizens cause for concern; the excessive force being routinely deployed is alarming. Within the first few days of Occupy Wall Street, protesters began to notice the presence of the NYPD's Counter Terrorism Unit at Liberty Plaza. Reports of targeted arrests of informal "leaders" at Wall Street, Chicago and Boston indicate surveillance measures are operating [along with] extended and humiliating detentions of targeted occupy "leaders" ... deprived of their phone call, food and water, and ... mattresses were removed from cells. Director of education at the Massachusetts chapter of the ACLU, [Nancy Murray] views the various signs of Department of Homeland Security involvement as important indicators that the federal government is orchestrating the policing of Occupy protests throughout the country. "This would be a big concern because it would show that the federal government is possibly playing an active role in opposing people's rights to free speech and to peaceably assemble," says Murray.

Note: For Prof. John McMurtry's important review of Andrew Kolin's State Power and Democracy, which argues that the US is a police state designed over decades, even centuries, to protect the interests of the "1 percent", click here. For key reports from reliable sources on major government assaults on civil liberties, click here.


Group of moms defies U.S. law in raw milk protest
2011-11-02, San Francisco Chronicle (San Francisco's leading newspaper)
http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2011/11/01/MNRG1LP5LU.DTL

A self-described "caravan of criminal mothers" defied federal law [on November 1] by transporting raw milk across state lines from a Pennsylvania farm and drinking it in front of the Food and Drug Administration headquarters in Maryland. "It's totally natural for me as a parent to want to feed my children good food that makes them healthy," said Liz Reitzig, 31, a mother of five in Bowie, Md., who organized the protest. "In this case that is fresh, clean, raw milk from farmers we know and trust. The idea that we become criminals for engaging in that transaction is what is so appalling." The protesters, numbering about 100, ... drove in from as far away as Illinois and Kentucky to denounce government tyranny, corporate cabals and the "agricultural-industrial complex," promising more protests and civil disobedience. The FDA considers it "perfectly safe to feed your kids Mountain Dew, Twinkies and Cocoa Puffs, but it's unsafe to feed them raw milk, compost-grown tomatoes and Aunt Matilda's pickles," said Joel Salatin, the Virginia farmer made famous by the documentary "Food, Inc.," who joined the protesters. The protest sprang from an FDA sting operation on Amish farmer Dan Allgyer's tiny dairy of three dozen cows in Kinzer, Pa., that culminated in a predawn raid on the farm last year. Allgyer had been selling milk to consumers in Maryland who had formed a buying club. None of Allgyer's milk was contaminated. His alleged crime was selling it across state lines.

Note: For a great video of the raw milk freedom riders, click here. For key reports from reliable sources on government attacks on civil liberties, click here.


Governments turn to hacking techniques for surveillance of citizens
2011-11-01, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
http://www.guardian.co.uk/technology/2011/nov/01/governments-hacking-techniqu...

In a luxury Washington, DC, hotel last month, governments from around the world gathered to discuss surveillance technology they would rather you did not know about. The annual Intelligence Support Systems (ISS) World Americas conference is a mecca for representatives from intelligence agencies and law enforcement. But to the media or members of the public, it is strictly off limits. Behind the cloak of secrecy at the ISS World conference, tips are shared about the latest advanced ... methods used to spy on citizens – computer hacking, covert bugging and GPS tracking. The use of such methods is more commonly associated with criminal hacking groups, who have used spyware and trojan viruses to infect computers and steal bank details or passwords. But as the internet has grown, intelligence agencies and law enforcement have adopted similar techniques. "The current method of choice would seem to be spyware, or trojan horses," said Chris Soghoian, a Washington-based surveillance and privacy expert. "When there are five or six conferences held in closed locations every year, where telecommunications companies, surveillance companies and government ministers meet in secret to cut deals, buy equipment, and discuss the latest methods to intercept their citizens' communications – that I think meets the level of concern," he said. "Decades of history show that surveillance powers are abused – usually for political purposes."

Note: For more on corporate and government threats to privacy and civil liberties, click here and here.


8 City Officers Charged in Gun Smuggling Case
2011-10-26, New York Times
http://www.nytimes.com/2011/10/26/nyregion/new-york-officers-accused-of-smugg...

[New York police] officers — five are still on the force, and three are retired — and four other men were accused of transporting M-16 rifles and handguns, as well as what they believed to be stolen merchandise across state lines, according to a complaint filed in the case in Federal District Court in Manhattan. The gun-trafficking accusations strike at the heart of one of the Police Department’s most hard-fought and robust initiatives, and one that has been a central theme of the administration of Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg: getting guns off the city’s streets. Mr. Bloomberg is the head of Mayors Against Illegal Guns, a coalition of 600 municipal chief executives from around the nation. [NYPD], the largest municipal police force in the nation, [is] already besieged by corruption accusations. In recent weeks, testimony at the trial of a narcotics detective has featured accusations that he and his colleagues in Brooklyn and Queens planted drugs or lied under oath to meet arrest quotas and earn overtime, leading to the arrests of eight officers, the dismissal of hundreds of drug cases because of their destroyed credibility and the payout of more than $1 million in taxpayer money to settle false arrest lawsuits.

Note: For lots more from major media sources on government corruption, click here.


U.S. airstrike that killed American teen in Yemen raises legal, ethical questions
2011-10-22, Washington Post
http://www.washingtonpost.com/world/national-security/us-airstrike-that-kille...

One week after a U.S. military airstrike killed a 16-year-old American citizen in Yemen, no one in the Obama administration, Pentagon or Congress has taken responsibility for his death, or even publicly acknowledged that it happened. The absence of official accountability for the demise of Abdulrahman al-Awlaki, a Denver native and the son of [Anwar al-Awlaki], deepens the legal and ethical murkiness of the Obama administration’s campaign to kill alleged enemies of the state outside of traditional war zones. Officials throughout the U.S. government ... have refused to answer questions for the record about how or why Awlaki was killed Oct. 14 in a remote part of Yemen, along with eight other people. The official silence about the death of the American teenager contrasts with the Obama administration’s eagerness to trumpet another airstrike in Yemen two weeks earlier. In that case, armed drones controlled by the CIA killed the teen’s father, Anwar al-Awlaki. [A] U.S. official said the airstrike was launched by the military’s secretive Joint Special Operations Command, or JSOC. The younger Awlaki was the third U.S. citizen killed by the U.S. government in Yemen in recent weeks.

Note: For deep background on reasons why the US government may have wanted to eliminate Anwar al-Awlaki and his son, click here.


Questions Linger Over Why CIA Operative Is at NYPD
2011-10-17, ABC News/Associated Press
http://abcnews.go.com/US/wireStory/cia-nypd-depends-14750628

Working inside the New York Police Department is one of the CIA's most experienced clandestine operatives. He arrived in July as the special assistant to the deputy commissioner of intelligence. While his title is clear, his job responsibilities are not. Federal and city officials have offered differing explanations for why this top CIA officer was assigned to a municipal police department. The CIA is prohibited from spying domestically, and its unusual partnership with the NYPD has troubled top lawmakers and prompted an internal investigation. The last time a CIA officer worked so closely with the NYPD, beginning in the months after the 9/11 attacks, he became the architect of aggressive police programs that monitored Muslim neighborhoods. With that earlier help from this CIA official, the police put entire communities under a microscope based on ethnicity rather than allegations of wrongdoing. On Monday, New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg defended the arrangement. "If the CIA can help us I'm all for getting any information they have and then letting the police department use it," he said. All of this has troubled lawmakers, including Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., the chairwoman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, who has said the CIA has "no business or authority in domestic spying, or in advising the NYPD how to conduct local surveillance."

Note: While it is quite amazing that this information was reported in the major media, well-informed people have known that CIA operatives are secretly inserted in police stations across the US. They are also deployed in key positions in every major media outlet in the U.S. and many around the world, where they can stop reporting of information which reveals too much. To read the fascinating accounts of two award-winning journalist providing clear evidence of this, click here.


Secret panel can put Americans on 'kill list'
2011-10-06, MSNBC/Reuters
http://today.msnbc.msn.com/id/44794516/ns/today-today_news/t/secret-panel-can...

American militants like Anwar al-Awlaki are placed on a kill or capture list by a secretive panel of senior government officials, which then informs the president of its decisions, according to officials. There is no public record of the operations or decisions of the panel, which is a subset of the White House's National Security Council. Neither is there any law establishing its existence or setting out the rules by which it is supposed to operate. The panel was behind the decision to add Awlaki ... to the target list. He was killed by a CIA drone strike in Yemen late last month. The White House is portraying the killing of Awlaki as a demonstration of President Barack Obama's toughness toward militants who threaten the United States. But the process that led to Awlaki's killing has drawn fierce criticism from both the political left and right. Obama, who ran for president denouncing predecessor George W. Bush's expansive use of executive power in his "war on terrorism," is being attacked in some quarters for using similar tactics. They include secret legal justifications and undisclosed intelligence assessments. Liberals criticized the drone attack on an American citizen as extra-judicial murder. Conservatives criticized Obama for refusing to release a Justice Department legal opinion that reportedly justified killing Awlaki.

Note: State assassination of a citizen without due process would seem to be the ultimate attack on civil liberties. For lots more on such threats from reliable sources, click here.


On targeted assassinations, what about due process?
2011-10-04, San Francisco Chronicle (San Francisco's leading newspaper)
http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2011/10/04/ED7E1LCQ7N.DTL

U.S. officials last week acknowledged that unmanned predator aircraft killed two U.S. citizens, Anwar al-Awlaki and Samir Khan, in Yemen. Yet, U.S. media outlets have chosen to refer to them as "American born" or "U.S.-born," as in "the American-born cleric Anwar al-Awlaki was killed by U.S. armed drones." No concrete proof of their guilt has been furnished beyond what the government and multiple media outlets have reported. In the case of the al-Awlaki killing, U.S. officials said, "Al-Awlaki played a 'significant operational role' in plotting and inspiring attacks on the United States," as they justified the killing of an American citizen. In the post-9/11 world, such reporting garners little attention from the public. But those who believe in the rule of law find such mundane pronouncements frightening. The Sixth Amendment guarantees the accused the right to a public trial by an impartial jury, regardless of his or her ethnic background or previous alleged activities. Government-sanctioned assassinations of U.S. citizens without due process should be discussed rather than blindly accepted as a victory in the war on terror. The obvious follow-up question is: What about other U.S. citizens? Might they also be targeted for assassination without due process? The targeted killings of al-Awlaki and Khan should shock Americans reared on the rule of law, justice, liberty and freedom.

Note: State assassination of a citizen without due process would seem to be the ultimate attack on civil liberties. For lots more on such threats from reliable sources, click here.


'Stingray' Phone Tracker Fuels Constitutional Clash
2011-09-22, Wall Street Journal
http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424053111904194604576583112723197574.html

For more than a year, federal authorities pursued a man they called simply "the Hacker." Only after using a little known cellphone-tracking device — a stingray — were they able to zero in on a California home and make the arrest. Stingrays are designed to locate a mobile phone even when it's not being used to make a call. The Federal Bureau of Investigation considers the devices to be so critical that it has a policy of deleting the data gathered in their use, an FBI official told The Wall Street Journal. A stingray's role in nabbing the alleged "Hacker" — Daniel David Rigmaiden — is shaping up as a possible test of the legal standards for using these devices in investigations. Stingrays are one of several new technologies used by law enforcement to track people's locations, often without a search warrant. These techniques are driving a constitutional debate about whether the Fourth Amendment, which prohibits unreasonable searches and seizures, but which was written before the digital age, is keeping pace with the times. Mr. Rigmaiden maintains his innocence and says that using stingrays to locate devices in homes without a valid warrant "disregards the United States Constitution" and is illegal.

Note: For lots more on threats to civil liberties from reliable sources, click here.


Fear of Repression Spurs Scholars and Activists to Build Alternate Internets
2011-09-18, Chronicle of Higher Education
http://chronicle.com/article/College-20-Fear-of/129049/

Computer networks proved their organizing power during the recent uprisings in the Middle East [but] those same networks showed their weaknesses as well, such as when the Egyptian government walled off most of its citizens from the Internet in an attempt to silence protesters. That has led scholars and activists increasingly to consider the Internet's wiring as a disputed political frontier. One weekend each month, a small group of computer programmers gathers [in Washington DC] to build a homemade Internet—named Project Byzantium -— that could go online if part of the current global Internet becomes blocked by a repressive government. The leader of the effort ... says he fears that some day repressive measures could be put into place in the United States. He is not the only one with such apprehensions. Hundreds of like-minded high-tech activists and entrepreneurs in New York at an unusual conference called the Contact Summit. The summit's goal is not just to talk about the projects, but also to connect with potential financial backers, recruit programmers, and brainstorm approaches to building parallel Internets and social networks. The meeting is a sign of the growing momentum of what is called the "free-network movement," whose leaders are pushing to rewire online networks to make it harder for a government or corporation to exert what some worry is undue control or surveillance.

Note: For a revealing BBC News article showing the Pentagon's desire for "maximum control of the Internet," click here. Released government documents show the US military's intent to be able to "disrupt or destroy the full spectrum of globally emerging communications systems, sensors, and weapons systems." For lots more on threats to civil liberties from reliable sources, click here.


The Whistleblowers’ How-To Guide
2011-09-11, The Daily Beast/Newsweek
http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2011/09/11/frederic-whitehurst-more-whi...

Frederic Whitehurst had no idea what being a whistleblower entailed. He simply became outraged when he witnessed a colleague in the FBI laboratory giving misleading testimony in a criminal case two decades ago. So the supervisory agent decided to speak up, telling the defense experts about the inaccuracies. It cost him nearly a decade of his career, almost all his life savings, several emotionally draining internal investigations, the humiliation of a psychiatric exam, and an epic legal fight with the bureau. But the proudly stubborn Vietnam veteran persevered and ultimately prevailed in forcing sweeping ethical and scientific reforms at the vaunted FBI crime lab that began in the 1990s and still reverberate today. And while he’d do it all again, Whitehurst doesn’t want future whistleblowers to make the same mistakes he did. That’s why he and 19 other of America’s most famous corporate and government muckrakers of the last quarter century have banded together this month to donate thousands of copies of a book by their lawyer, Stephen Kohn, to libraries across America. Their goal is to give the next generation of American whistleblowers a roadmap, a virtual how-to guide to ensure they can call out wrongdoing successfully, be protected from the customary retributions, and maybe even cash in on False Claim Act awards that can reach into the millions of dollars. [They] are using their own money to buy copies of Kohn’s book, The Whistleblower’s Handbook: A Step-by-Step Guide to Doing What’s Right and Protecting Yourself, and donating them to libraries around the country.

Note: For deeply revealing reports from reliable major media sources on government corruption, click here.


Even a top cop concedes a right to video arrests - but the street tells a different story
2011-09-03, Philadelphia Inquirer (Philadelphia's leading newspaper)
http://articles.philly.com/2011-09-03/news/30109223_1_cops-arrest-police-crui...

Tamera Medley begged the police officer to stop slamming her head - over and over - into the hood of a police cruiser. Thinking they were helping, passers-by Shakir Riley and Melissa Hurling both turned their cellphone video cameras toward the melee that had erupted on Jefferson Street in Wynnefield, they said. But then the cops turned on them. Riley had started to walk away when at least five baton-wielding cops followed him, he said, and they beat him, poured a soda on his face and stomped on his phone, destroying the video he had just taken. Although it's legal to record Philadelphia police performing official duties in public, all three were charged with disorderly conduct and related offenses, and officers destroyed Hurling and Riley's cellphones, erasing any record of Medley's violent arrest. Echoes of the incident, which was corroborated by a half-dozen witnesses, have been reverberating nationwide in recent years as the combination of cellphone video and police officers has simmered into what is an increasingly explosive formula. The issue is gaining national attention. The American Civil Liberties Union has civil lawsuits pending in Washington, D.C., Florida, Illinois and Maryland. Last week, a federal appeals court in Boston ruled that police had violated the First Amendment rights of a lawyer who was arrested after filming cops arrest a teenager. Suits have been settled in Pennsylvania.

Note: For lots more from major media sources on growing threats to our civil liberties, click here.



Important Note: Explore our full index to revealing excerpts of key major media news articles on several dozen engaging topics. And don't miss amazing excerpts from 20 of the most revealing news articles ever published.