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Civil Liberties Media Articles

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'I was misidentified as shoplifter by facial recognition tech'
2024-05-25, BBC News
https://www.bbc.com/news/technology-69055945

Sara needed some chocolate - she had had one of those days - so wandered into a Home Bargains store. "Within less than a minute, I'm approached by a store worker who comes up to me and says, 'You're a thief, you need to leave the store'." Sara ... was wrongly accused after being flagged by a facial-recognition system called Facewatch. She says after her bag was searched she was led out of the shop, and told she was banned from all stores using the technology. Facewatch later wrote to Sara and acknowledged it had made an error. Facewatch is used in numerous stores in the UK. It's not just retailers who are turning to the technology. On the day we were filming, the Metropolitan Police said they made six arrests with the assistance of the tech. 192 arrests have been made so far this year as a result of it. But civil liberty groups are worried that its accuracy is yet to be fully established, and point to cases such as Shaun Thompson's. Mr Thompson, who works for youth-advocacy group Streetfathers, didn't think much of it when he walked by a white van near London Bridge. Within a few seconds, he was approached by police and told he was a wanted man. But it was a case of mistaken identity. "It felt intrusive ... I was treated guilty until proven innocent," he says. Silkie Carlo, director of Big Brother Watch, has filmed the police on numerous facial-recognition deployments. She says that anyone's face who is scanned is effectively part of a digital police line-up.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on artificial intelligence controversies from reliable major media sources.


Columbia Crackdown Led by University Prof Doubling as NYPD Spook
2024-05-03, ScheerPost
https://scheerpost.com/2024/05/03/columbia-crackdown-led-by-university-prof-d...

The violent crackdown carried out on Columbia University students protesting Israel’s genocidal assault on the Gaza Strip was led by a member of the school’s own faculty, New York City Mayor Eric Adams has declared. During a May 1 press conference, just hours after the New York Police Department arrested nearly 300 people on university grounds, Adams praised adjunct Columbia professor Rebecca Weiner, who moonlights as the head of the NYPD counter-terrorism bureau, for giving police the green light to clear out anti-genocide students by force. Weiner maintained an office at Columbia’s School of International and Public Affairs (SIPA). Her SIPA bio describes her as an “Adjunct Associate Professor of International and Public Affairs” who simultaneously serves as the “civilian executive in charge of the New York City Police Department’s Intelligence & Counterterrorism Bureau.” In that role ... Weiner “develops policy and strategic priorities for the Intelligence & Counterterrorism Bureau and publicly represents the NYPD in matters involving counterterrorism and intelligence.” A 2011 AP investigation revealed that a so-called “Demographics Unit” operated secretly within the NYPD’s Counterterrorism and Intelligence Bureau. This shadowy outfit spied on Muslims around the New York City area. The unit was developed in tandem with the CIA. As a former police official told the AP, the unit attempted to “map the city’s human terrain” through a program “modeled in part on how Israeli authorities operate in the West Bank.”

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on police corruption and the erosion of civil liberties from reliable major media sources.


FBI Agent Says He Hassles People 'Every Day, All Day Long' Over Facebook Posts
2024-03-29, Reason
https://reason.com/2024/03/29/fbi-agent-says-he-hassles-people-every-day-all-...

The FBI spends "every day, all day long" interrogating people over their Facebook posts. At least, that's what agents told Stillwater, Oklahoma, resident Rolla Abdeljawad when they showed up at her house to ask her about her social media activity. Three FBI agents came to Abdeljawad's house and said that they had been given "screenshots" of her posts by Facebook. Her lawyer Hassan Shibly posted a video of the incident. "Facebook gave us a couple of screenshots of your account," one agent in a gray shirt said in the video. "So we no longer live in a free country and we can't say what we want?" replied Abdeljawad. "No, we totally do. That's why we're not here to arrest you or anything," a second agent in a red shirt added. "We do this every day, all day long. It's just an effort to keep everybody safe and make sure nobody has any ill will." Shibly says that he doesn't know which Facebook post caught the agents' attention, and that it was the first time he had heard of Facebook's parent company, Meta, preemptively reporting posts to law enforcement. [Abdeljawad] made multiple angry posts per day about the war in Gaza, referring to Israel as "Israhell." But none of the posts on her feed call for violence. Ironically, Abdeljawad had also posted a warning about exactly the kind of government monitoring she was later subjected to. "Don't fall for their games. Our community is being watched & they are just waiting for any reason to round us up," Abdeljawad wrote.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on government corruption and the erosion of civil liberties from reliable major media sources.


Cops Running DNA-Manufactured Faces Through Face Recognition Is a Tornado of Bad Ideas
2024-03-22, Electronic Freedom Foundation
https://www.eff.org/deeplinks/2024/03/cops-running-dna-manufactured-faces-thr...

Police in the U.S. recently combined two existing dystopian technologies in a brand new way to violate civil liberties. A police force in California recently employed the new practice of taking a DNA sample from a crime scene, running this through a service provided by US company Parabon NanoLabs that guesses what the perpetrators face looked like, and plugging this rendered image into face recognition software to build a suspect list. Parabon NanoLabs ... alleges it can create an image of the suspect’s face from their DNA. Parabon NanoLabs claim to have built this system by training machine learning models on the DNA data of thousands of volunteers with 3D scans of their faces. The process is yet to be independently audited, and scientists have affirmed that predicting face shapes—particularly from DNA samples—is not possible. But this has not stopped law enforcement officers from seeking to use it, or from running these fabricated images through face recognition software. Simply put: police are using DNA to create a hypothetical and not at all accurate face, then using that face as a clue on which to base investigations into crimes. This ... threatens the rights, freedom, or even the life of whoever is unlucky enough to look a little bit like that artificial face. These technologies, and their reckless use by police forces, are an inherent threat to our individual privacy, free expression, information security, and social justice.

Note: Law enforcement officers in many U.S. states are not required to reveal that they used face recognition technology to identify suspects. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of important news articles on police corruption and the erosion of civil liberties from reliable major media sources.


Palestine: “Peace to Prosperity” Through Technocracy
2023-12-12, Unlimited Hangout
https://unlimitedhangout.com/2023/12/investigative-reports/palestine-peace-to...

The Palestinian population is intimately familiar with how new technological innovations are first weaponized against them–ranging from electric fences and unmanned drones to trap people in Gaza—to the facial recognition software monitoring Palestinians in the West Bank. Groups like Amnesty International have called Israel an Automated Apartheid and repeatedly highlight stories, testimonies, and reports about cyber-intelligence firms, including the infamous NSO Group (the Israeli surveillance company behind the Pegasus software) conducting field tests and experiments on Palestinians. Reports have highlighted: “Testing and deployment of AI surveillance and predictive policing systems in Palestinian territories. In the occupied West Bank, Israel increasingly utilizes facial recognition technology to monitor and regulate the movement of Palestinians. Israeli military leaders described AI as a significant force multiplier, allowing the IDF to use autonomous robotic drone swarms to gather surveillance data, identify targets, and streamline wartime logistics.” The Palestinian towns and villages near Israeli settlements have been described as laboratories for security solutions companies to experiment their technologies on Palestinians before marketing them to places like Colombia. The Israeli government hopes to crystalize its “automated apartheid” through the tokenization and privatization of various industries and establishing a technocratic government in Gaza.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on government corruption and the disappearance of privacy from reliable major media sources.


DHS Must Overhaul Its Flawed Automated Systems
2023-10-24, Brennan Center for Justice
https://www.brennancenter.org/our-work/analysis-opinion/dhs-must-overhaul-its...

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is likely the single largest collector and consumer in the U.S. government of detailed, often intimate, information about Americans and foreigners alike. The department stores and analyzes this information using vast data systems to determine who can enter the country and who is subjected to intrusive inspections, including by parsing through travel records, social media data, non-immigrant visa applications, and other information to detect patterns of behavior that the department has determined are worthy of scrutiny. As we explain in a new Brennan Center report, these systems ... are too often deployed in discriminatory ways that violate Americans’ constitutional rights and civil liberties. It is past time for DHS to stop improvising how it designs and implements its automated systems, with inadequate mechanisms for evaluation and oversight, weak standards, and disproportionate impacts on marginalized communities and individuals. DHS must disclose additional information about its systems, including the policies that govern their operations and reports explaining how they are used. An independent body should undertake a rigorous investigation of DHS’s automated systems, evaluating whether they are useful and accurate, assessing how they function, and determining whether they contain sufficient safeguards to protect privacy, civil rights, and civil liberties.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on government corruption and the disappearance of privacy from reliable major media sources.


Biden officials ‘likely violated First Amendment’ in Big Tech COVID censorship efforts, appeals court affirms
2023-09-08, New York Post
https://nypost.com/2023/09/08/biden-officials-likely-violated-first-amendment...

The Biden administration likely infringed upon the First Amendment when it leaned on social media companies to remove false or misleading COVID-19 content, a federal court of appeals ruled Friday — narrowing a bombshell district court order that barred several officials and agencies from communicating with the platforms. The White House, surgeon general, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the FBI “likely coerced or significantly encouraged social-media platforms to moderate content” and in doing so, “likely violated the First Amendment,” the New Orleans-based Fifth US Circuit Court of Appeals determined. The three-judge panel, however, adjusted the scope of US District Judge Terry Doughty’s July 4 order ... removing officials from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease, the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency and the State Department from the injunction. The Fifth Circuit vacated nine of the 10 provisions in Doughty’s order that prevented Biden administration officials from “urging, encouraging, pressuring” or “inducing” social media companies from removing content. Similarly, the appeals court determined that “following up with social-media companies” about content moderation, “requesting content reports from social-media companies” or asking platforms to “Be on The Lookout” for certain types of material does not violate individuals’ First Amendment rights. 

Note: Many posts that were censored contained factual information on COVID-related issues. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on the coronavirus and media manipulation from reliable sources.


The US Is Openly Stockpiling Dirt on All Its Citizens
2023-06-12, Wired
https://www.wired.com/story/odni-commercially-available-information-report/

The United States government has been secretly amassing a "large amount" of "sensitive and intimate information" on its own citizens, a group of senior advisers informed Avril Haines, the director of national intelligence. The government effort to accumulate data revealing the minute details of Americans' lives [is] described soberly and at length by the director's own panel of experts in a newly declassified report. The report states that the government believes it can "persistently" track the phones of "millions of Americans" without a warrant, so long as it pays for the information. It is often trivial "to deanonymize and identify individuals" from data that was packaged ... for commercial use. Such data may be useful, it says, to "identify every person who attended a protest or rally based on their smartphone location or ad-tracking records." Such civil liberties concerns are prime examples of how "large quantities of nominally 'public' information can result in sensitive aggregations." What's more, information collected for one purpose "may be reused for other purposes," which may "raise risks beyond those originally calculated," an effect called "mission creep." "In the wrong hands," [Office of the Director of National Intelligence] advisers warn, the same mountain of data the government is quietly accumulating could be turned against Americans to "facilitate blackmail, stalking, harassment, and public shaming." These are all offenses that have been committed by intelligence agencies and White House administrations in the past.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on government corruption and the disappearance of privacy from reliable major media sources.


Pipeline Company Spent Big On Police Gear To Use Against Standing Rock Protesters
2023-05-22, The Intercept
https://theintercept.com/2023/05/22/standing-rock-energy-transfer-tigerswan/

By March 2017, the fight over the construction of the Dakota Access pipeline had been underway for months. Law enforcement was ... discussing plans with Energy Transfer, the parent company of the Dakota Access pipeline. Throughout much of the uprising against the pipeline, the National Sheriffs’ Association talked routinely with TigerSwan, Energy Transfer’s lead security firm on the project, working hand in hand to craft pro-pipeline messaging. Documents, released by the North Dakota Private Investigation and Security Board, reveal how TigerSwan and the sheriffs’ group worked together to twist the story in the media so that it aligned with the oil company’s interests, seeking to pollute the public’s perception of the water protectors. The private security firm pushed for the purchase, by Energy Transfer, of hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of radios for the cops. TigerSwan also placed an order for a catalog of so-called less-lethal weapons for police use, including tear gas. Off the Record Strategies, the public relations firm working for the National Sheriffs' Association, coordinated with the opposition research firm Delve to track activists' social media pages, arrest records, and funding sources. The companies sought to paint the protesters as violent, professional, billionaire-funded, out-of-state agitators whose camps represented the true ecological disaster, as well as to identify movement infighting that might be exploited.

Note: Read how TigerSwan treated water protectors as terrorists. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on corporate corruption and the erosion of civil liberties from reliable major media sources.


Digital Privacy Legislation is Civil Rights Legislation
2023-05-18, ScheerPost
https://scheerpost.com/2023/05/18/digital-privacy-legislation-is-civil-rights...

Our personal data and the ways private companies harvest and monetize it plays an increasingly powerful role in modern life. One unifying thread to this pervasive system is the collection of personal information from marginalized communities, and the subsequent discriminatory use by corporations and government agencies–exacerbating existing structural inequalities across society. Data surveillance is a civil rights problem, and legislation to protect data privacy can help protect civil rights. Where mobile apps are used disparately by specific groups, the collection and sharing of personal data can aggravate civil rights problems. For example, a Muslim prayer app (Muslim Pro) sold geolocation data about its users to a company called X-Mode, which in turn provided access to this data to the U.S. military through defense contractors. In 2016, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and nine other social media platforms were found to have provided software company Geofeedia with social media information and location data from their users. This data was subsequently used by police departments across the U.S. to track down and identify individuals attending Black Lives Matter protests. Moreover, lower-income people are often less able to avoid corporate harvesting of their data. For example, some lower-priced technologies collect more data than other technologies, such as inexpensive smartphones that come with preinstalled apps that leak data and can't be deleted.

Note: Read how Clearview AI gave law enforcement access to 30 billion images from social media sites. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on government corruption and the erosion of civil liberties from reliable major media sources.


The Man Who Knew Exactly What the F.B.I. Was Doing to Martin Luther King Jr.
2023-04-12, New York Times
https://www.nytimes.com/2023/04/12/opinion/lyndon-johnson-martin-luther-king-...

We have long known about the F.B.I. director J. Edgar Hoover’s animus toward the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Hoover built an extensive apparatus of surveillance and disruption designed to destroy King. It’s time to ... recognize the power structure that supported the F.B.I.’s campaign. Many Americans — starting with the president — thought movement activists like King posed threats to the established order and needed to be watched and controlled. Members of the press could have exposed the bureau’s campaign. And many government officials who could have stopped, curtailed or exposed the F.B.I.’s attack on King instead enabled or encouraged it. F.B.I. records declassified in the past several years and documents from the Johnson archives released in 2022 force us to reconsider the nature of Johnson’s involvement in the F.B.I.’s campaign against King. White House documents ... suggest that Johnson, from the beginning of his presidency in 1963 to King’s assassination in 1968, was apprised almost weekly by Hoover himself on the F.B.I.’s surveillance of King. Johnson did nothing to stop or rein in the F.B.I., even after at least one top administration official expressed concern. In addition to the president and the media, other officials at the F.B.I. ... worked to ruin King. Scores of ranking officials and agents at the F.B.I., dozens of elected officials and several informants embedded in King’s inner circles knew what was going on, and none, as far as the public records indicate, blew a whistle on the campaign.

Note: Few people know about the 1999 King Family civil trial in Memphis, where it took a jury only one hour to find the U.S. government guilty for the assassination of Martin Luther King Jr. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on government corruption and the erosion of civil liberties from reliable major media sources.


After 20 Years, the Department of Homeland Security Is a Money-Guzzling Failure
2023-03-13, Newsweek
https://www.newsweek.com/after-20-years-department-homeland-security-money-gu...

In March 2003, the newly christened Department of Homeland Security, or DHS, opened its doors. The department took everything from immigration enforcement and counterterrorism to airport security and disaster response under one gargantuan bureaucracy. Despite these wide-ranging missions, the department's unifying logic in the post 9/11 era has been to wage the so-called war on terror at home. The result has been systemic abuse of minority communities, a dangerous militarization of American life, and a massive waste of money that sapped resources from addressing the real threats to our homeland. DHS agencies have militarized U.S. streets, sending officers in tactical gear to respond to civilian protests and conducting surveillance of U.S. citizens engaged in constitutionally protected activities. There are stories of DHS drones surveilling Indigenous water and land protectors and DHS forces spying on Black Lives Matter protesters. DHS even monitored journalists who reported on the department's tactics. None of these abuses have come cheap. Since its founding in 2003, the U.S. has spent $1.4 trillion on the agency. That's more than seven times what the government spent over the same period on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), including the CDC's COVID-19 pandemic response—and more than five times more than on the Environmental Protection Agency. The [DHS] was supposed to be about making the U.S. safer. But it has failed.

Note: A thorough investigation reveals details on the DHS "Disinformation Governance Board," an unsuccessful effort in 2022 to police online speech it considers inaccurate and dangerous. Now, the DHS board and its key subcommittees are undergoing sweeping changes as public concern grows over social media censorship and government overreach.


Facial recognition bias frustrates Black asylum applicants to US, advocates say
2023-02-08, The Guardian (One of the UK's Leading Newspapers)
https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2023/feb/08/us-immigration-cbp-one-app-fa...

The US government’s new mobile app for migrants to apply for asylum at the US-Mexico border is blocking many Black people from being able to file their claims because of facial recognition bias in the tech, immigration advocates say. The app, CBP One, is failing to register many people with darker skin tones, effectively barring them from their right to request entry into the US. People who have made their way to the south-west border from Haiti and African countries, in particular, are falling victim to apparent algorithm bias in the technology that the app relies on. The government announced in early January that the new CBP One mobile app would be the only way migrants arriving at the border can apply for asylum and exemption from Title 42 restrictions. Racial bias in face recognition technology has long been a problem. Increasingly used by law enforcement and government agencies to fill databases with biometric information including fingerprints and iris scans, a 2020 report by Harvard University called it the “least accurate” identifier, especially among darker-skinned women with whom the error rate is higher than 30%. Emmanuella Camille, a staff attorney with the Haitian Bridge Alliance ... said the CBP One app has helped “lighter-skin toned people from other nations” obtain their asylum appointments “but not Haitians” and other Black applicants. Besides the face recognition technology not registering them ... many asylum seekers have outdated cellphones – if they have cellphones at all – that don’t support the CBP One app.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on government corruption and the erosion of civil liberties from reliable major media sources.


Homeland Security Admits It Tried to Manufacture Fake Terrorists for Trump
2022-11-05, MSN News
https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/politics/homeland-security-admits-it-tried-to-...

The Department of Homeland Security launched a failed operation that ensnared hundreds, if not thousands, of U.S. protesters in what new documents show was as a sweeping, power-hungry effort before the 2020 election to bolster President Donald Trump’s spurious claims about a “terrorist organization” he accused his Democratic rivals of supporting. An internal investigative report, made public this month by Sen. Ron Wyden ... details the findings of DHS lawyers concerning a previously undisclosed effort by Trump’s acting secretary of homeland security, Chad Wolf, to amass secret dossiers on Americans in Portland attending anti-racism protests in summer 2020 sparked by the police murder of ... George Floyd. The report describes attempts by top officials to link protesters to an imaginary terrorist plot in an apparent effort to boost Trump’s reelection odds, raising concerns now about the ability of a sitting president to co-opt billions of dollars’ worth of domestic intelligence assets for their own political gain. DHS analysts recounted orders to generate evidence of financial ties between protesters in custody; an effort that, had they not failed, would have seemingly served to legitimize President Trump’s false claims about “Antifa.” The report describes the dossiers generated by DHS as having detailed the past whereabouts and the “friends and followers of the subjects, as well as their ... First Amendment speech activity.”

Note: Read about the FBI's use of entrapment to manufacture terrorist plots. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on government corruption and the erosion of civil liberties from reliable major media sources.


When is a lynching a lynching?
2022-10-25, The Guardian (One of the UK's Leading Newspapers)
https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2022/oct/25/lynching-michael-williams-iow...

Authorities swiftly called the death a homicide. The victim was 44-year-old Michael Williams. Days later, law enforcement agencies announced they had arrested and charged a 31-year-old army veteran, Steven Vogel, with murder. Williams had been strangled, according to the medical examiner’s office. Authorities arrested and charged three others with helping Vogel move the body. The case attracted national attention. Michael Williams was Black, and his body was burned and dumped in an almost-exclusively white part of Iowa. The four people arrested were white. These events occurred 15 weeks after Minneapolis police publicly murdered George Floyd. And yet, law enforcement immediately declared that no evidence suggested the murder had been motivated by racism. Williams’s family and other members of central Iowa’s Black community weren’t convinced. The simple fact a white man hanged a Black man with a rope and then set him on fire in an easily visible spot – with three other white people helping cover up the murder – was telling. Data analyzed by the Guardian reveals this to be common: victims’ loved ones clearly see racist motives, while law agencies often don’t. From the outset, authorities rejected a racial motive. “They never pursued it,” says Paula Terrell, Williams’s aunt. “They just kept saying ‘it’s a love triangle.’” In fact, Williams’s murder was one of several incidents in central Iowa that targeted Black people in short sequence.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on police corruption from reliable major media sources.


FBI hero paying the price for exposing unjust ‘persecution’ of conservative Americans
2022-09-21, New York Post
https://nypost.com/2022/09/21/fbi-hero-paying-the-price-for-exposing-unjust-p...

Allegations by FBI Special Agent Steve Friend contained in a whistleblower complaint filed late Wednesday with the Department of Justice inspector general reveal a politicized Washington, DC, FBI field office cooking the books to exaggerate the threat of domestic terrorism, and ­using an “overzealous” January 6 investigation to harass conservative Americans and violate their constitutional rights. Friend, 37, a respected 12-year veteran of the FBI and a SWAT team member, was suspended Monday, stripped of his gun and badge, and escorted out of the FBI field office in Daytona Beach, Fla., after complaining to his supervisors about the violations. He was declared absent without leave last month for refusing to participate in SWAT raids that he believed violated FBI policy and were a use of excessive force against Jan. 6 subjects accused of misdemeanor offenses. “I have an oath to uphold the Constitution,” he told supervisors when he asserted his conscientious objection to joining an Aug. 24 raid on a J6 subject. “I have a moral objection and want to be considered a conscientious objector.” In his whistleblower complaint to DOJ Inspector General Michael Horowitz ... Friend lays out multiple violations of FBI policy involving J6 investigations in which he was involved. He says he was removed from active investigations into child sexual exploitation and human trafficking to work on J6 cases sent from DC. As a result, he believes his child exploitation investigations were harmed.

Note: Read how Facebook is silencing activity related to this whistleblower. Read also Matt Taibbi’s reporting on this important case. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on government corruption from reliable major media sources.


Revealed: how UK targeted American civil rights leader in covert campaign
2022-09-13, The Guardian (One of the UK's Leading Newspapers)
https://www.theguardian.com/world/2022/sep/13/revealed-how-uk-targeted-americ...

The British government targeted the American civil rights leader Stokely Carmichael and sought to weaken the Black Power movement with covert disinformation campaigns, recently declassified documents have revealed. The effort was the work of a secret unit known as the Information Research Department, based in London and part of the Foreign Office, which created and distributed literature from fake sources as part of a broader effort to destabilise cold war enemies. The effort against Carmichael, a firebrand orator who travelled to west Africa in part to escape harassment by US law enforcement agencies, aimed to portray the prominent Black Power leader as a foreign interloper in Africa who was contemptuous of the inhabitants of the continent. Based mainly in Guinea from July 1969, the 28-year-old activist had became a vocal advocate of socialist, pan-Africanist ideologies, which worried British officials. The IRD was particularly worried by the movement’s potential influence in the Caribbean. In 1969, the IRD also created a new fake group: The Organisation of African Students for African Power. This was supposedly based in East Germany and adopted contemporary radical New Left ideas, “proclaiming a plague on both” the capitalist west and the Soviet bloc. The IRD felt this provided a better platform to “damage opponents” than the dated nationalist approach, while being difficult to trace back to Britain because many similar groups had genuinely sprung up in the late 1960s.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on intelligence agency corruption and the erosion of civil liberties from reliable major media sources.


The FBI monitored Aretha Franklin's role in the civil rights movement for years
2022-09-12, NPR
https://www.npr.org/2022/09/12/1122319306/aretha-franklin-fbi-surveillance

The FBI spent years surveilling the "Queen of Soul" Aretha Franklin, trying to gauge how involved she was with the civil rights movement, communism and the Black Power movement, a 270-page document shows. Franklin, who died in 2018, was monitored ahead of several performances and attendances she made for civil rights groups, such as the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People and the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, whose first president was Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Informants mentioned Franklin, a Detroit native, in separate memos for possibly appearing at the SCLC's 1967 and 1968 national conventions, in Atlanta and Memphis, respectively. The FBI mailed several copies of "The Atlanta Voice" newspaper, which reported on her visit to town, to FBI offices around the country, as well as the U.S. attorney general and the Secret Service. During this time, Franklin was, in fact, actively involved in the civil rights movement through her music and personal connections. She was identified in a 1969 memo titled "Possible Racial Violence, Urban Areas, Racial Matters" when, in the year before, Denver concertgoers rioted after she refused to perform at the Red Rocks amphitheater due to not being properly paid. In 1971, memos named the Black Panther Party of Los Angeles and the Boston Young Workers Liberation League as organizations who intended to book her for rallies.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on intelligence agency corruption and the erosion of civil liberties from reliable major media sources.


U.S. counts Indian boarding school deaths for first time but leaves key questions unanswered
2022-05-11, NBC News
https://www.nbcnews.com/news/us-news/indian-boarding-school-deaths-interior-d...

At least 500 Native American, Alaska Native and Native Hawaiian children died while attending Indian boarding schools run or supported by the U.S. government, a highly anticipated Interior Department report said Wednesday. The report identified over 400 schools and more than 50 gravesites and said more gravesites would likely be found. The report is the first time in U.S. history that the government has attempted to comprehensively research and acknowledge the magnitude of the horrors it inflicted on Native American children for decades. But it falls well short of some independent estimates of deaths and does not address how the children died or who was responsible. The report also sheds little new light on the physical and sexual abuse generations of Indigenous children endured at the schools, which were open for more than 150 years, starting in the early 1800s. The report identified more than 500 child deaths after examining records for 19 of the facilities, a small share of the total number of schools identified. The number is significantly less than some estimates, which are in the tens of thousands. Preston S. McBride, an Indian boarding school historian and a Comanche descendent ... has found more than 1,000 student deaths at the four former boarding schools he has studied, and estimates the overall number of deaths could be as high as 40,000. “Basically every school had a cemetery,” he said. “There are deaths at or deaths because of virtually every single boarding school.”

Note: Canada has been investigating its own residential schools. What happened at these schools was akin to "cultural genocide," according to a 2015 report from Canada's Truth and Reconciliation Commission. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on government corruption from reliable major media sources.


A white man got probation for voting fraud. A Black woman faced six years in prison for an error
2022-03-03, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2022/mar/03/voter-fraud-election-crime-se...

In the late summer of 2020, Bruce Bartman went to Pennsylvania’s voter registration website and signed up his mother and mother-in-law to vote. Both women were dead. A few months later, Bartman, who is white, requested a mail-in ballot for his late mother and cast her vote for Donald Trump. Bartman was arrested that December and charged with perjury and unlawful voting. He pleaded guilty, admitted he made a “stupid mistake”, was sentenced to five years of probation and barred from serving on a jury or voting for four years. When Bartman pleaded guilty, nearly 1,000 miles away, in Memphis, a Black Lives Matter activist named Pamela Moses was facing her own election-related criminal charges. A few years previously, Moses, who is Black, permanently lost the right to vote after committing a felony. But no one had actually removed Moses from the voter rolls or told her she couldn’t vote. And in 2019, when state officials began looking into her eligibility, a probation officer signed a certificate saying Moses had completed her sentence and was eligible to vote. So she applied to do so. Even though corrections officials conceded they made an error, Moses was indicted anyway. She was sentenced to six years and one day in prison. The case ... underscored what many experts see as a double standard in the US criminal justice system: white people face relatively light punishment for intentional cases of fraud, while Black people face tougher punishments for unintentional voting errors.

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