Military Corruption Media ArticlesExcerpts of Key Military Corruption Media Articles in Major Media
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The United States Air Force's secretive X-37B space plane has been circling Earth for more than 10 months, and there's no telling when it might come down. "Because it is an experimental vehicle, they kind of want to see what its limits are," said Brian Weeden, a technical adviser with the Secure World Foundation and a former orbital analyst with the Air Force. The X-37B looks a lot like NASA's now-retired space shuttle, only much smaller. The unmanned vehicle is about 29 feet long by 15 feet wide (8.8 by 4.5 meters), with a payload bay the size of a pickup truck bed. For comparison, two entire X-37Bs could fit inside the payload bay of a space shuttle. Just what the X-37B does for so long while circling our planet remains a mystery, because the space plane's payloads and missions are classified. Partly as a result of the secrecy, some concern has been raised — particularly by Russia and China — that the X-37B might be a space weapon of some sort. But the Air Force has repeatedly denied that charge, claiming that the vehicle's chief task is testing out new technologies for future satellites. The spacecraft is flying repeatedly over the stretch of Earth from 43 degrees north latitude to 43 degrees south latitude. The space plane may be observing the Middle East and Afghanistan with some brand-new spy gear, perhaps instruments optimized to observe in wavelengths beyond the visible-light spectrum.
Note: For lots more on government secrecy from reliable sources, click here.
The Pentagon has quietly shifted combat troops and warships to the Middle East after the top American commander in the region warned that he needed additional forces to deal with Iran and other potential threats, U.S. officials said. Marine Corps Gen. James Mattis, who heads U.S. Central Command, won White House approval for the deployments late last year after talks with the government in Baghdad broke down over keeping U.S. troops in Iraq, but the extent of the Pentagon moves is only now becoming clear. The Pentagon has stationed nearly 15,000 troops in Kuwait, adding to a small contingent already there. The new units include two Army infantry brigades and a helicopter unit - a substantial increase in combat power after nearly a decade in which Kuwait chiefly served as a staging area for supplies and personnel heading to Iraq. The Pentagon also has decided to keep two aircraft carriers and their strike groups in the region. Earlier this week, the American carrier Carl Vinson joined the carrier Stennis in the Arabian Sea, giving commanders major naval and air assets in case Iran carries out its recent threats to close the Strait of Hormuz, a strategic chokepoint in the Persian Gulf, where one-fifth of the world's oil shipments passes.
It has been 10 years since Guantanamo Bay became a prison. Today, 171 men are still held there with no real prospect of either trial or release. Bush administration officials have admitted ordering torture against prisoners in Guantanamo, Afghanistan, Iraq and secret sites in [other] countries, yet no one has been held to account for violating U.S. law. Their illegal actions and the recent passage - and signing by President Obama - of the National Defense Authorization Act have undermined fundamental structures of law and morality that are our heritage as Americans. More than 80 percent of Americans self-identified as "religious" in a 2011 Pew poll. Today, 312 U.S. faith groups are members of the National Religious Campaign Against Torture. Organized in 2006, it is a vehicle for people of faith seeking to denounce abusive practices by the United States. Under President Obama, we have held no one accountable for torture. With the passage of the Defense Act, indefinite detention without trial has become law ... including even American citizens captured on U.S. soil, a clear violation of the Fourth Amendment to the Constitution. The loss of habeas corpus rights under the Defense Act now puts every ordinary person at risk of indefinite detention. As citizens, it is our right and responsibility to demand that our government investigate the U.S. torture program and uphold our constitutional rights. As a nation of people of faith, this is our sacred duty.
Note: The author, Louise Specht, is the convener of the Bay Area Religious Campaign Against Torture, the Northern California affiliate of the National Religious Campaign Against Torture.
In the space of three years, the [Obama] administration has built an extensive apparatus for using drones to carry out targeted killings of suspected terrorists and stealth surveillance of other adversaries. The apparatus involves dozens of secret facilities, including two operational hubs on the East Coast, virtual Air Force cockpits in the Southwest and clandestine bases in at least six countries on two continents. No president has ever relied so extensively on the secret killing of individuals to advance the nation’s security goals. Lethal operations are increasingly assembled a la carte, piecing together personnel and equipment in ways that allow the White House to toggle between separate legal authorities that govern the use of lethal force. In Yemen, for instance, the CIA and the military’s Joint Special Operations Command pursue the same adversary with nearly identical aircraft. But they alternate taking the lead on strikes to exploit their separate authorities, and they maintain separate kill lists that overlap but don’t match. CIA and military strikes this fall killed three U.S. citizens, two of whom were suspected al-Qaeda operatives. Although human rights advocates and others are increasingly critical of the drone program, the level of public debate remains muted. [One] reason for the lack of extensive debate is secrecy. The White House has refused to divulge details about the structure of the drone program or, with rare exceptions, who has been killed.
Note: Not that the US citizens killed were not given their constitutional rights for a fair trail before being assassinated. For lots more from major media sources on government secrecy, click here.
At one point in the 1970s there were more than 1,000 people in the Danbury area working on The Secret. And though they worked long hours under intense deadlines, sometimes missing family holidays and anniversaries, they could tell no one — not even their wives and children — what they did. They were engineers, scientists, draftsmen and inventors. It was dubbed “Big Bird’’ and it was considered the most successful space spy satellite program of the Cold War era. From 1971 to 1986 a total of 20 satellites were launched, each containing 60 miles of film and sophisticated cameras that orbited the earth snapping vast, panoramic photographs of the Soviet Union, China and other potential foes. The film was shot back through the earth’s atmosphere in buckets that parachuted over the Pacific Ocean, where C-130 Air Force planes snagged them with grappling hooks. The scale, ambition and sheer ingenuity of Hexagon KH-9 was breathtaking. So too is the human tale of the 45-year-old secret that many took to their graves. Hexagon was declassified in September. “The question became, how do you hide an elephant?’’ a National Reconnaissance Office report stated at the time. It decided on a simple response: “What elephant?’’ Employees were told to ignore any questions from the media, and never confirm the slightest detail about what they worked on.
Note: This is another excellent example of how government is able to keep huge projects secret, and how top secret military technology is often decades ahead of anything which has been publicly revealed. Note that even the existence of the National Reconnaissance Office, founded in 1960, was completely denied until it's existence was declassified in 1992. Does government lie to us? Without a doubt.
A Pentagon public relations program that sought to transform high-profile military analysts into "surrogates" and "message force multipliers" for the Bush administration complied with Defense Department regulations and directives, the Pentagon's inspector general has concluded after a two-year investigation. The inquiry was prompted by articles published in the New York Times in 2008 that described how the Pentagon, in the years after the Sept. 11 attacks, cultivated close ties with retired officers who worked as military analysts for television and radio networks. In response to the articles, the Pentagon suspended the program, and members of Congress asked the Defense Department's inspector general to investigate. The results of the inquiry ... confirm that the Pentagon under Donald Rumsfeld made a concerted effort ... to build and sustain public support for the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. The inquiry found that from 2002 to 2008, Rumsfeld's Pentagon organized 147 events for 74 military analysts. The inquiry confirmed that Rumsfeld's staff frequently provided military analysts with discussion points before their network appearances.
Note: For lots more on government corruption from reliable sources, click here.
It has been seven years since the end of the second siege of Fallujah – the US assault that left the city in ruins, killed thousands of civilians, and displaced hundreds of thousands more; the assault that poisoned a generation, plaguing the people who live there with cancers and their children with birth defects. It has been seven years and the lies that justified the assault still perpetuate false beliefs about what we did. Unlike most of my counterparts, I understand that I was the aggressor, and that the resistance fighters in Fallujah were defending their city. How can I begrudge the resistance in Fallujah for killing my friends, when I know that I would have done the same thing if I were in their place? How can I blame them when we were the aggressors? I carried a radio on my back that dropped the bombs that killed civilians and reduced Fallujah to rubble. If I were a Fallujan, I would have killed anyone like me. I would have had no choice. The fate of my city and my family would have depended on it. I would have killed the foreign invaders. [US soldiers] were killed and they killed others because of a political agenda in which they were just pawns. They were the iron fist of American empire, and an expendable loss in the eyes of their leaders. What we did to Fallujah cannot be undone. What I want to attack are the lies and false beliefs. I want to destroy the prejudices that prevented us from putting ourselves in the other's shoes and asking ourselves what we would have done if a foreign army invaded our country and laid siege to our city.
Note: For key reports from reliable, verifiable sources detailing atrocities carried out by the US military and its allies in the "global war on terror", click here.
If terrorists ever target Fargo, N.D., the local police will be ready. In recent years, they have bought bomb-detection robots, digital communications equipment and Kevlar helmets, like those used by soldiers in foreign wars. For local siege situations requiring real firepower, police there can use a new $256,643 armored truck, complete with a rotating turret. Until that day, however, the menacing truck is mostly used for training runs and appearances at the annual Fargo picnic, where it’s been displayed near a children’s bounce house. Fargo, like thousands of other communities in every state, has been on a gear-buying spree with the aid of more than $34 billion in federal government grants since the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks on New York and the Pentagon. The federal grant spending, awarded with little oversight from Washington, has fueled a rapid, broad transformation of police operations in Fargo and in departments across the country. More than ever before, police rely on quasi-military tactics and equipment. A review of records from 41 states obtained through open-government requests, and interviews with more than two-dozen current and former police officials and terrorism experts, shows police departments around the U.S. have transformed into small army-like forces. Many police, including beat cops, now routinely carry assault rifles.
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.
Battlefield technology is coming to the streets of Los Angeles County. Starting this month, one of the nation's major military contractors is outfitting the Los Angeles County Sheriff Department's patrol cars with sophisticated computer systems and high-tech gadgetry that has been perfected for the battlefield. At a total cost to taxpayers of $20 million, Raytheon Co. promises to deliver technology that will enable deputies on the road to sort through key intelligence information in mere seconds. In a single roadside stop, they'll have the ability to run a background check using a searchable FBI database — or pull up a suspect's mug shots or even obtain biometric data, such as fingerprints — on the spot. The Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department is the largest in the nation, covering more than 4,000 square miles and a population of more than 10 million. Daniel J. Crowley, president of Raytheon's Network Centric Systems, noted that ... the Sheriff's Department's new equipment is being used by security forces in the Green Zone in Baghdad to police the area. "The military's situation overseas may be much different from the Sheriff's Department, but the need is basically the same."
Note: For an illuminating article revealing that the Pentagon is supplying police departments across the US with military technology and supplies for no cost, click here.
Prominent international human rights lawyer Clive Stafford Smith was impressed by the 16-year-old boy who wanted to draw attention to civilian deaths caused by U.S. drone strikes in Pakistan. Tariq Aziz had volunteered to take pictures of people killed by the remotely piloted aircraft to help Stafford Smith highlight what he calls illegal killings. Three days later, on October 31, he and his 12-year-old cousin were themselves killed by a drone missile strike in the North Waziristan region on the Afghan border, Stafford Smith said. For the veteran lawyer, the deaths highlighted major flaws in the CIA-run drone campaign, which U.S. officials say is invaluable in the war on militants. He considers the drones as "scandalous" as the secret U.S. bombing of Cambodia during the Vietnam War. "What we are seeing in Waziristan is a process that is alienating the population just as napalm in Vietnam did and it's achieving very little benefit." Stafford Smith [also] drew parallels between Guantanamo and the drone campaign in Pakistan, arguing both detentions and strikes were often based on dubious intelligence. He suspects the death of Aziz was a prime example of that. "We as America offer large bounties to different informants and these informants would sell their own mothers," said Stafford Smith, 52, a dual U.S.-British citizen who is the director of Reprieve, an organization that advocates for prisoners' rights.
Note: For key reports from major media sources on the killing of innocent people by US drones, click here.
Thirty-one seconds after the pilot reported muzzle flashes, the Marines at Alcatraz ordered that the Predator be prepared to strike if the shooters could be confirmed as hostile. At 8:49 a.m., 29 minutes after the ambush began, they authorized the pilot to fire. In minutes, two Americans would be dead. The decision to fire a missile from one of the growing fleet of U.S. unmanned aircraft is the result of work by ground commanders, pilots and analysts at far-flung military installations, who analyze video and data feeds and communicate by a system of voice and text messages. In addition to the platoon taking fire that morning in Helmand province's Upper Sangin Valley, the mission involved Marine Corps and Air Force personnel at four locations: Marines of the 2nd Reconnaissance Battalion at Alcatraz, the drone crew in Nevada, the analyst in Indiana and a mission intelligence coordinator at March Air Reserve Base in California. Senior officers say drone technology has vastly improved their ability to tell friend from foe in the confusion of battle. But the video can also prompt commanders to make decisions before they fully understand what they're seeing. In February 2009, a crew operating a drone over Afghanistan misidentified a civilian convoy as an enemy force. The Predator pilot and the Army captain who called in the airstrike disregarded warnings from Air Force analysts who had observed children in the convoy. At least 15 people were killed.
Note: For key reports from major media sources on the illegal and immoral prosecution of the global "war on terror" by the US military and NATO, click here.
The Air Force has been secretly flying Reaper drones on counterterrorism missions from a remote civilian airport in southern Ethiopia as part of a rapidly expanding U.S.-led proxy war ... in East Africa, U.S. military officials said. The Reapers began flying missions earlier this year over neighboring Somalia. The United States has relied on lethal drone attacks, a burgeoning CIA presence in Mogadishu and small-scale missions carried out by U.S. Special Forces. The Washington Post reported last month that the Obama administration is building a constellation of secret drone bases in the Arabian Peninsula and the Horn of Africa. The location of the Ethiopian base and the fact that it became operational this year, however, have not been previously disclosed. Some bases in the region also have been used to carry out operations ... in Yemen. The U.S. military deploys drones on attack and surveillance missions over Somalia from a number of bases in the region. The Air Force operates a small fleet of Reapers from the Seychelles, a tropical archipelago in the Indian Ocean, about 800 miles from the Somali coast. The U.S. military also operates drones — both armed versions and models used strictly for surveillance — from Djibouti, a tiny African nation that abuts northwest Somalia at the junction of the Red Sea and the Gulf of Aden.
Note: For more from reliable sources on war manipulations and the expanding use of drones worldwide, click here.
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.
The Defense Department, which has promised to publish a reliable account of how it spends its money by 2017, has discovered that its financial ledgers are in worse shape than expected and that it will have to spend billions of dollars in the coming years to make its financial accounting credible, the Center for Public Integrity reported [on October 13]. The U.S. military has spent more than $6 billion to develop and deploy new financial systems, but the effort has been plagued by significant added overruns and delays, defense officials told the CPI, a nonprofit investigative news organization. The Government Accountability Office said in a report last month that although the services can now fully track incoming appropriations, they still can't demonstrate that their funds are being spent as they should be. The Pentagon’s bookkeeping has come under increased scrutiny as Congress and the Obama administration have vowed to reduce the federal deficit. The department could face substantial cutbacks if a special bipartisan "supercommittee" can’t agree on a formula for reducing the deficit.
Note: For an essay by a top U.S. general revealing how wars are used to bring huge profits to the powerful elite of our world, click here. For lots more from reliable sources on government corruption, click here.
After 10 years of war, the vast majority of post-Sept. 11 veterans say the public does not understand the problems faced by those in the military and by their families. The public largely agrees but believes there’s nothing unfair about the outsized burden being shouldered by veterans. The findings are part of a broad new study by the Pew Research Center that documents a growing gap between civilians and a military force that has been put under intense strain over the past decade. Less than 1 percent of the U.S. population has been on active military duty at any given time during the past decade. For many Americans, the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan have been seen only in glimpses, in a newspaper or on television. For many veterans, however, the wars have meant incredible strains that have lasted long beyond their deployments. Roughly 44 percent of post-9/11 veterans say their readjustment to civilian life was difficult, according to the Pew study. By contrast, 25 percent of veterans who served in earlier eras said the same. Nearly four in 10 said that they believe they have suffered from post-traumatic stress, regardless of whether they have been formally diagnosed.
Note: The full study, "War and Sacrifice in the Post-9/11 Era," can be found here.
Disturbing footage of Apache attack helicopters killing people in Afghanistan is being shown to frontline British soldiers in "Kill TV nights" designed to boost morale. The discovery of the practice ... casts fresh questions over the conduct of soldiers deployed abroad and has provoked a furious response from peace campaigners. Andrew Burgin from Stop the War ... described it as the "ultimate degradation of British troops", comparing it to the desensitisation to death of US soldiers in the final stages of the Vietnam War. The footage ... shows ground troops at the British headquarters in Helmand province, Camp Bastion, gathered for a get-together said to be called "Kill TV night". It shows an Apache helicopter commander admitting possible errors of judgement and warning colleagues not to disclose what they have seen. "This is not for discussion with anybody else; keep it quiet about what you see up here," he says. "It's not because we've done anything wrong. But we might have done." Much of the footage is along the lines of the now infamous video of a US Apache helicopter strike on civilians in Baghdad in 2007, first released on WikiLeaks last year. In one clip an Afghan woman is targeted after a radio dialogue between pilots refers to her as a "snake with tits".
Note: For reliable reports on war atrocities by US and NATO forces in Afghanistan and Iraq, click here.
[A recent] successful exercise in autonomous robotics could presage the future of the American way of war: a day when drones hunt, identify and kill the enemy based on calculations made by software, not decisions made by humans. The demonstration laid the groundwork for scientific advances that would allow drones to search for a human target and then make an identification based on facial-recognition or other software. Once a match was made, a drone could launch a missile to kill the target. The prospect of machines able to perceive, reason and act in unscripted environments presents a challenge to the current understanding of international humanitarian law. “The deployment of such systems would reflect a paradigm shift and a major qualitative change in the conduct of hostilities,” Jakob Kellenberger, president of the International Committee of the Red Cross, said at a conference in Italy this month. Drones flying over Afghanistan, Pakistan and Yemen can already move automatically from point to point, and it is unclear what surveillance or other tasks, if any, they perform while in autonomous mode.
Note: For lots more from reliable sources on Pentagon robotic weapons development projects, click here.
The CIA’s armed drones and paramilitary forces have killed dozens of al-Qaeda leaders and thousands of its foot soldiers. But there is another mysterious organization that has killed even more of America’s enemies in the decade since the 9/11 attacks. Troops from this other secret organization have imprisoned and interrogated 10 times as many [suspects as has the CIA], holding them in jails that it alone controls in Iraq and Afghanistan. Since the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, this secretive group of men (and a few women) has grown tenfold while sustaining a level of obscurity that not even the CIA managed. “We’re the dark matter. We’re the force that orders the universe but can’t be seen,” a strapping Navy SEAL, speaking on the condition of anonymity, said in describing his unit. The SEALs are just part of the U.S. military’s Joint Special Operations Command, known by the acronym JSOC, which has grown from a rarely used hostage rescue team into America’s secret army, routinely [used] to mount intelligence-gathering missions and lethal raids, mostly in Iraq and Afghanistan, but also in countries with which the United States was not at war, including Yemen, Pakistan, Somalia, the Philippines, Nigeria and Syria. The president has also given JSOC the rare authority to select individuals for its kill list — and then to kill, rather than capture, them. JSOC has grown from 1,800 troops prior to 9/11 to as many as 25,000. It has its own intelligence division, its own drones and reconnaissance planes, even its own dedicated satellites.
Note: This article describing JSOC’s spectacular rise, much of which has not been publicly disclosed before, is adapted from a chapter of the newly released Top Secret America: The Rise of the New American Security State, by Washington Post reporters Dana Priest and William M. Arkin. For lots more on the secret realities of the "Endless War" launched by the 9/11 false-flag operation, click here.
Britain and other European governments have helped the US commit “countless” crimes by colluding with torture and illegal rendition operations in America’s war on terror, Europe’s human rights watchdog has said. Thomas Hammarberg, the Council of Europe’s rights commissioner, accused governments of being “deeply complicit” in illegal activities carried out by the US over the last 10 years, since the September 11 2001 terrorist attacks on New York and Washington. “In attempting to combat crimes attributed to terrorists, countless further crimes have been committed in the course of the US-led 'global war on terror’,” he said. “Many of those crimes have been carefully and deliberately covered up.” A 2007 Council of Europe (COE) report by Dick Marty, Swiss MP, accused Britain and 13 other European governments of allowing the CIA to run secret detention centres, of turning a blind eye to torture and the illegal abductions of terror suspects. Mr Hammerberg accused Europe’s governments of blocking investigations into rendition in line with Washington’s wishes. “So far Europe has granted effective impunity to those who committed crimes in implementing the rendition policy. An urgent rethink is required to prevent this misjudged and failed counter terrorism approach from having a sad legacy of injustice,” said Mr Hammerberg.
Note: For lots more from reliable sources on the hidden realities behind the "Global War on Terror", 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.