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  Google Illuminati/CFR Controlled

Submitter: [anonymous]
Category: News / Articles - Government / Politics
exhibition Date: 2018-08-07 22:53:08
Last Update: 2018-08-08 18:03:14
Views: 78
Score: 5.00 / 5.00 (Based on 3 votes.)
 
After being banned in Europe, the Illuminati went under many names. When they came to the United States, they went under the name of the Council on Foreign Relations. Hillary, McCain, Romney, Obama & others undermining our nation from both major Parties are CFR/Illuminati Members. This Interview reveals Google’s Owners are as well.

WORLD
ASSANGE: GOOGLE IS NOT WHAT IT SEEMS
By Julian Assange On Thursday, October 23, 2014 - 12:47

Executive Chairman of Google Eric Schmidt and Jared Cohen, director of Google Ideas

In June 2011, Julian Assange received an unusual visitor: the chairman of Google, Eric Schmidt, arrived from America at Ellingham Hall, the country house in Norfolk, England where Assange was living under house arrest.

For several hours the besieged leader of the world’s most famous insurgent publishing organization and the billionaire head of the world’s largest information empire locked horns. The two men debated the political problems faced by society, and the technological solutions engendered by the global network—from the Arab Spring to Bitcoin.


They outlined radically opposing perspectives: for Assange, the liberating power of the Internet is based on its freedom and statelessness. For Schmidt, emancipation is at one with U.S. foreign policy objectives and is driven by connecting non-Western countries to Western companies and markets. These differences embodied a tug-of-war over the Internet’s future that has only gathered force subsequently.

In this extract from When Google Met WikiLeaks Assange describes his encounter with Schmidt and how he came to conclude that it was far from an innocent exchange of views.


Eric Schmidt is an influential figure, even among the parade of powerful characters with whom I have had to cross paths since I founded WikiLeaks. In mid-May 2011 I was under house arrest in rural Norfolk, England, about three hours’ drive northeast of London. The crackdown against our work was in full swing and every wasted moment seemed like an eternity. It was hard to get my attention.


But when my colleague Joseph Farrell told me the executive chairman of Google wanted to make an appointment with me, I was listening.

In some ways the higher echelons of Google seemed more distant and obscure to me than the halls of Washington. We had been locking horns with senior U.S. officials for years by that point. The mystique had worn off. But the power centers growing up in Silicon Valley were still opaque and I was suddenly conscious of an opportunity to understand and influence what was becoming the most influential company on earth. Schmidt had taken over as CEO of Google in 2001 and built it into an empire.

Keep Up With This Story And More By Subscribing Now


I was intrigued that the mountain would come to Muhammad. But it was not until well after Schmidt and his companions had been and gone that I came to understand who had really visited me.

The stated reason for the visit was a book. Schmidt was penning a treatise with Jared Cohen, the director of Google Ideas, an outfit that describes itself as Google’s in-house “think/do tank.”

I knew little else about Cohen at the time. In fact, Cohen had moved to Google from the U.S. State Department in 2010. He had been a fast-talking “Generation Y” ideas man at State under two U.S. administrations, a courtier from the world of policy think tanks and institutes, poached in his early twenties.


He became a senior advisor for Secretaries of State Rice and Clinton. At State, on the Policy Planning Staff, Cohen was soon christened “Condi’s party-starter,” channeling buzzwords from Silicon Valley into U.S. policy circles and producing delightful rhetorical concoctions such as “Public Diplomacy 2.0.” On his Council on Foreign Relations adjunct staff page he listed his expertise as “terrorism; radicalization; impact of connection technologies on 21st century statecraft; Iran.”

It was Cohen who, while he was still at the Department of State, was said to have emailed Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey to delay scheduled maintenance in order to assist the aborted 2009 uprising in Iran. His documented love affair with Google began the same year when he befriended Eric Schmidt as they together surveyed the post-occupation wreckage of Baghdad. Just months later, Schmidt re-created Cohen’s natural habitat within Google itself by engineering a “think/do tank” based in New York and appointing Cohen as its head. Google Ideas was born.

Later that year two co-wrote a policy piece for the Council on Foreign Relations’ journal Foreign Affairs, praising the reformative potential of Silicon Valley technologies as an instrument of U.S. foreign policy. Describing what they called “coalitions of the connected,” Schmidt and Cohen claimed that:

Democratic states that have built coalitions of their militaries have the capacity to do the same with their connection technologies.…

They offer a new way to exercise the duty to protect citizens around the world [emphasis added].

Schmidt and Cohen said they wanted to interview me. I agreed. A date was set for June.


Jared Cohen

* * *

By the time June came around there was already a lot to talk about. That summer WikiLeaks was still grinding through the release of U.S. diplomatic cables, publishing thousands of them every week. When, seven months earlier, we had first started releasing the cables, Hillary Clinton had denounced the publication as “an attack on the international community” that would “tear at the fabric” of government.

It was into this ferment that Google projected itself that June, touching down at a London airport and making the long drive up into East Anglia to Norfolk and Beccles.

Schmidt arrived first, accompanied by his then partner, Lisa Shields. When he introduced her as a vice president of the Council on Foreign Relations—a U.S. foreign-policy think tank with close ties to the State Department—I thought little more of it. Shields herself was straight out of Camelot, having been spotted by John Kennedy Jr.’s side back in the early 1990s.

They sat with me and we exchanged pleasantries. They said they had forgotten their Dictaphone, so we used mine. We made an agreement that I would forward them the recording and in exchange they would forward me the transcript, to be corrected for accuracy and clarity. We began. Schmidt plunged in at the deep end, straightaway quizzing me on the organizational and technological underpinnings of WikiLeaks.

* * *

Some time later Jared Cohen arrived. With him was Scott Malcomson, introduced as the book’s editor. Three months after the meeting Malcomson would enter the State Department as the lead speechwriter and principal advisor to Susan Rice (then U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, now national security advisor).

At this point, the delegation was one part Google, three parts U.S. foreign-policy establishment, but I was still none the wiser. Handshakes out of the way, we got down to business.

Schmidt was a good foil. A late-fiftysomething, squint-eyed behind owlish spectacles, managerially dressed—Schmidt’s dour appearance concealed a machinelike analyticity. His questions often skipped to the heart of the matter, betraying a powerful nonverbal structural intelligence.

It was the same intellect that had abstracted software-engineering principles to scale Google into a megacorp, ensuring that the corporate infrastructure always met the rate of growth. This was a person who understood how to build and maintain systems: systems of information and systems of people. My world was new to him, but it was also a world of unfolding human processes, scale and information flows.

For a man of systematic intelligence, Schmidt’s politics—such as I could hear from our discussion—were surprisingly conventional, even banal. He grasped structural relationships quickly, but struggled to verbalize many of them, often shoehorning geopolitical subtleties into Silicon Valley marketese or the ossified State Department micro-language of his companions. He was at his best when he was speaking (perhaps without realizing it) as an engineer, breaking down complexities into their orthogonal components.

I found Cohen a good listener, but a less interesting thinker, possessed of that relentless conviviality that routinely afflicts career generalists and Rhodes Scholars. As you would expect from his foreign-policy background, Cohen had a knowledge of international flash points and conflicts and moved rapidly between them, detailing different scenarios to test my assertions. But it sometimes felt as if he was riffing on orthodoxies in a way that was designed to impress his former colleagues in official Washington.

Malcomson, older, was more pensive, his input thoughtful and generous. Shields was quiet for much of the conversation, taking notes, humoring the bigger egos around the table while she got on with the real work.

As the interviewee, I was expected to do most of the talking. I sought to guide them into my worldview. To their credit, I consider the interview perhaps the best I have given. I was out of my comfort zone and I liked it.

We ate and then took a walk in the grounds, all the while on the record. I asked Eric Schmidt to leak U.S. government information requests to WikiLeaks, and he refused, suddenly nervous, citing the illegality of disclosing Patriot Act requests. And then, as the evening came on, it was done and they were gone, back to the unreal, remote halls of information empire, and I was left to get back to my work.

That was the end of it, or so I thought.

* * *

Two months later, WikiLeaks’ release of State Department cables was coming to an abrupt end. For three-quarters of a year we had painstakingly managed the publication, pulling in over a hundred global media partners, distributing documents in their regions of influence and overseeing a worldwide, systematic publication and redaction system, fighting for maximum impact for our sources.

But The Guardian newspaper—our former partner—had published the confidential decryption password to all 251,000 cables in a chapter heading in its book, rushed out hastily in February 2011.

By mid-August we discovered that a former German employee—whom I had suspended in 2010—was cultivating business relationships with a variety of organizations and individuals by shopping around the location of the encrypted file, paired with the password’s whereabouts in the book. At the rate the information was spreading, we estimated that within two weeks most intelligence agencies, contractors and middlemen would have all the cables, but the public would not.

I decided it was necessary to bring forward our publication schedule by four months and contact the State Department to get it on record that we had given them advance warning. The situation would then be harder to spin into another legal or political assault.

Unable to raise Louis Susman, then U.S. ambassador to the U.K., we tried the front door. WikiLeaks investigations editor Sarah Harrison called the State Department front desk and informed the operator that “Julian Assange” wanted to have a conversation with Hillary Clinton. Predictably, this statement was initially greeted with bureaucratic disbelief.

We soon found ourselves in a reenactment of that scene in Dr. Strangelove, where Peter Sellers cold-calls the White House to warn of an impending nuclear war and is immediately put on hold. As in the film, we climbed the hierarchy, speaking to incrementally more superior officials until we reached Clinton’s senior legal advisor. He told us he would call us back. We hung up, and waited.

When the phone rang half an hour later, it was not the State Department on the other end of the line. Instead, it was Joseph Farrell, the WikiLeaks staffer who had set up the meeting with Google. He had just received an email from Lisa Shields seeking to confirm that it was indeed WikiLeaks calling the State Department.

It was at this point that I realized Eric Schmidt might not have been an emissary of Google alone. Whether officially or not, he had been keeping some company that placed him very close to Washington, D.C., including a well-documented relationship with President Obama. Not only had Hillary Clinton’s people known that Eric Schmidt’s partner had visited me, but they had also elected to use her as a back channel.

While WikiLeaks had been deeply involved in publishing the inner archive of the U.S. State Department, the U.S. State Department had, in effect, snuck into the WikiLeaks command center and hit me up for a free lunch. Two years later, in the wake of his early 2013 visits to China, North Korea and Burma, it would come to be appreciated that the chairman of Google might be conducting, in one way or another, “back-channel diplomacy” for Washington. But at the time it was a novel thought.

I put it aside until February 2012, when WikiLeaks—along with over thirty of our international media partners—began publishing the Global Intelligence Files: the internal email spool from the Texas-based private intelligence firm Stratfor. One of our stronger investigative partners—the Beirut-based newspaper Al Akhbar— scoured the emails for intelligence on Jared Cohen.

The people at Stratfor, who liked to think of themselves as a sort of corporate CIA, were acutely conscious of other ventures that they perceived as making inroads into their sector. Google had turned up on their radar. In a series of colorful emails they discussed a pattern of activity conducted by Cohen under the Google Ideas aegis, suggesting what the “do” in “think/do tank” actually means.

Cohen’s directorate appeared to cross over from public relations and “corporate responsibility” work into active corporate intervention in foreign affairs at a level that is normally reserved for states. Jared Cohen could be wryly named Google’s “director of regime change.”

According to the emails, he was trying to plant his fingerprints on some of the major historical events in the contemporary Middle East. He could be placed in Egypt during the revolution, meeting with Wael Ghonim, the Google employee whose arrest and imprisonment hours later would make him a PR-friendly symbol of the uprising in the Western press. Meetings had been planned in Palestine and Turkey, both of which—claimed Stratfor emails—were killed by the senior Google leadership as too risky.




Only a few months before he met with me, Cohen was planning a trip to the edge of Iran in Azerbaijan to “engage the Iranian communities closer to the border,” as part of a Google Ideas’ project on “repressive societies.” In internal emails Stratfor’s vice president for intelligence, Fred Burton (himself a former State Department security official), wrote:

Google is getting WH [White House] and State Dept support and air cover. In reality they are doing things the CIA cannot do…

[Cohen] is going to get himself kidnapped or killed. Might be the best thing to happen to expose Google’s covert role in foaming up-risings, to be blunt. The US Gov’t can then disavow knowledge and Google is left holding the shit-bag.

In further internal communication, Burton said his sources on Cohen’s activities were Marty Lev—Google’s director of security and safety—and Eric Schmidt himself.

Looking for something more concrete, I began to search in WikiLeaks’ archive for information on Cohen. State Department cables released as part of Cablegate reveal that Cohen had been in Afghanistan in 2009, trying to convince the four major Afghan mobile phone companies to move their antennas onto U.S. military bases. In Lebanon, he quietly worked to establish an intellectual and clerical rival to Hezbollah, the “Higher Shia League.” And in London he offered Bollywood movie executives funds to insert anti-extremist content into their films, and promised to connect them to related networks in Hollywood.

Three days after he visited me at Ellingham Hall, Jared Cohen flew to Ireland to direct the “Save Summit,” an event co-sponsored by Google Ideas and the Council on Foreign Relations. Gathering former inner-city gang members, right-wing militants, violent nationalists and “religious extremists” from all over the world together in one place, the event aimed to workshop technological solutions to the problem of “violent extremism.” What could go wrong?

Cohen’s world seems to be one event like this after another: endless soirees for the cross-fertilization of influence between elites and their vassals, under the pious rubric of “civil society.” The received wisdom in advanced capitalist societies is that there still exists an organic “civil society sector” in which institutions form autonomously and come together to manifest the interests and will of citizens. The fable has it that the boundaries of this sector are respected by actors from government and the “private sector,” leaving a safe space for NGOs and nonprofits to advocate for things like human rights, free speech and accountable government.

This sounds like a great idea. But if it was ever true, it has not been for decades. Since at least the 1970s, authentic actors like unions and churches have folded under a sustained assault by free-market statism, transforming “civil society” into a buyer’s market for political factions and corporate interests looking to exert influence at arm’s length. The last forty years have seen a huge proliferation of think tanks and political NGOs whose purpose, beneath all the verbiage, is to execute political agendas by proxy.

It is not just obvious neocon front groups like Foreign Policy Initiative. It also includes fatuous Western NGOs like Freedom House, where naïve but well-meaning career nonprofit workers are twisted in knots by political funding streams, denouncing non-Western human rights violations while keeping local abuses firmly in their blind spots.

The civil society conference circuit—which flies developing-world activists across the globe hundreds of times a year to bless the unholy union between “government and private stakeholders” at geopoliticized events like the “Stockholm Internet Forum”—simply could not exist if it were not blasted with millions of dollars in political funding annually.

Scan the memberships of the biggest U.S. think tanks and institutes and the same names keep cropping up. Cohen’s Save Summit went on to seed AVE, or AgainstViolentExtremism.org, a long-term project whose principal backer besides Google Ideas is the Gen Next Foundation. This foundation’s website says it is an “exclusive membership organization and platform for successful individuals” that aims to bring about “social change” driven by venture capital funding. Gen Next’s “private sector and non-profit foundation support avoids some of the potential perceived conflicts of interest faced by initiatives funded by governments.” Jared Cohen is an executive member.

Gen Next also backs an NGO, launched by Cohen toward the end of his State Department tenure, for bringing Internet-based global “pro-democracy activists” into the U.S. foreign relations patronage network. The group originated as the “Alliance of Youth Movements” with an inaugural summit in New York City in 2008 funded by the State Department and encrusted with the logos of corporate sponsors. The summit flew in carefully selected social media activists from “problem areas” like Venezuela and Cuba to watch speeches by the Obama campaign’s new-media team and the State Department’s James Glassman, and to network with public relations consultants, “philanthropists,” and U.S. media personalities.

The outfit held two more invite-only summits in London and Mexico City where the delegates were directly addressed via video link by Hillary Clinton:

You are the vanguard of a rising generation of citizen activists.…

And that makes you the kind of leaders we need.

In 2011, the Alliance of Youth Movements rebranded as “Movements.org.” In 2012 Movements.org became a division of “Advancing Human Rights,” a new NGO set up by Robert L. Bernstein after he resigned from Human Rights Watch (which he had originally founded) because he felt it should not cover Israeli and U.S. human rights abuses. Advancing Human Rights aims to right Human Rights Watch’s wrong by focusing exclusively on “dictatorships.”

Cohen stated that the merger of his Movements.org outfit with Advancing Human Rights was “irresistible,” pointing to the latter’s “phenomenal network of cyber-activists in the Middle East and North Africa.” He then joined the Advancing Human Rights board, which also includes Richard Kemp, the former commander of British forces in occupied Afghanistan. In its present guise, Movements.org continues to receive funding from Gen Next, as well as from Google, MSNBC and PR giant Edelman, which represents General Electric, Boeing, and Shell, among others.

Google Ideas is bigger, but it follows the same game plan. Glance down the speaker lists of its annual invite-only get-togethers, such as “Crisis in a Connected World” in October 2013. Social network theorists and activists give the event a veneer of authenticity, but in truth it boasts a toxic piñata of attendees: U.S. officials, telecom magnates, security consultants, finance capitalists and foreign-policy tech vultures like Alec Ross (Cohen’s twin at the State Department).

At the hard core are the arms contractors and career military: active U.S. Cyber Command chieftains, and even the admiral responsible for all U.S. military operations in Latin America from 2006 to 2009. Tying up the package are Jared Cohen and the chairman of Google, Eric Schmidt.

I began to think of Schmidt as a brilliant but politically hapless Californian tech billionaire who had been exploited by the very U.S. foreign-policy types he had collected to act as translators between himself and official Washington—a West Coast–East Coast illustration of the principal-agent dilemma.

I was wrong.

* * *

Eric Schmidt was born in Washington, D.C., where his father had worked as a professor and economist for the Nixon Treasury. He attended high school in Arlington, Virginia, before graduating with a degree in engineering from Princeton.

In 1979, Schmidt headed out West to Berkeley, where he received his Ph.D. before joining Stanford/ Berkeley spin-off Sun Microsystems in 1983. By the time he left Sun, sixteen years later, he had become part of its executive leadership.

Sun had significant contracts with the U.S. government, but it was not until he was in Utah as CEO of Novell that records show Schmidt strategically engaging Washington’s overt political class. Federal campaign finance records show that on January 6, 1999, Schmidt donated two lots of $1,000 to the Republican senator for Utah, Orrin Hatch. On the same day Schmidt’s wife, Wendy, is also listed giving two lots of $1,000 to Senator Hatch.

By the start of 2001, over a dozen other politicians and PACs, including Al Gore, George W. Bush, Dianne Feinstein, and Hillary Clinton, were on the Schmidts’ payroll, in one case for $100,000.

By 2013, Eric Schmidt—who had become publicly over-associated with the Obama White House—was more politic. Eight Republicans and eight Democrats were directly funded, as were two PACs. That April, $32,300 went to the National Republican Senatorial Committee. A month later the same amount, $32,300, headed off to the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee. Why Schmidt was donating exactly the same amount of money to both parties is a $64,600 question.

It was also in 1999 that Schmidt joined the board of a Washington, D.C.–based group: the New America Foundation, a merger of well-connected centrist forces (in D.C. terms). The foundation and its 100 staff serve as an influence mill, using its network of approved national security, foreign policy and technology pundits to place hundreds of articles and op-eds per year.

By 2008, Schmidt had become chairman of its board of directors. As of 2013 the New America Foundation’s principal funders (each contributing over $1 million) were listed as Eric and Wendy Schmidt, the U.S. State Department and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. Secondary funders include Google, the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and Radio Free Asia.

Schmidt’s involvement in the New America Foundation places him firmly in the Washington establishment nexus. The foundation’s other board members, seven of whom also list themselves as members of the Council on Foreign Relations, include Francis Fukuyama, one of the intellectual fathers of the neoconservative movement; Rita Hauser, who served on the President’s Intelligence Advisory Board under both Bush and Obama; Jonathan Soros, the son of George Soros; Walter Russell Mead, a U.S. security strategist and editor of the American Interest; Helene Gayle, who sits on the boards of Coca-Cola, Colgate-Palmolive, the Rockefeller Foundation, the State Department’s Foreign Affairs Policy Unit, the Council on Foreign Relations, the Center for Strategic and International Studies, the White House Fellows program and Bono’s ONE Campaign; and Daniel Yergin, oil geo-strategist, former chair of the U.S. Department of Energy’s Task Force.


The chief executive of the foundation, appointed in 2013, is Jared Cohen’s former boss at the State Department’s Policy Planning Staff, Anne-Marie Slaughter, a Princeton law and international relations wonk with an eye for revolving doors. She is everywhere, issuing calls for Obama to respond to the Ukraine crisis not only by deploying covert U.S. forces into the country but also by dropping bombs on Syria—on the basis that this will send a message to Russia and China. Along with Schmidt, she is a 2013 attendee of the Bilderberg conference and sits on the State Department’s Foreign Affairs Policy Board.

There was nothing politically hapless about Eric Schmidt. I had been too eager to see a politically unambitious Silicon Valley engineer, a relic of the good old days of computer science graduate culture on the West Coast. But that is not the sort of person who attends the Bilderberg conference four years running, who pays regular visits to the White House, or who delivers “fireside chats” at the World Economic Forum in Davos.

Schmidt’s emergence as Google’s “foreign minister”—making pomp and ceremony state visits across geopolitical fault lines—had not come out of nowhere; it had been presaged by years of assimilation within U.S. establishment networks of reputation and influence.

On a personal level, Schmidt and Cohen are perfectly likable people. But Google’s chairman is a classic “head of industry” player, with all of the ideological baggage that comes with that role. Schmidt fits exactly where he is: the point where the centrist, liberal and imperialist tendencies meet in American political life.

By all appearances, Google’s bosses genuinely believe in the civilizing power of enlightened multinational corporations, and they see this mission as continuous with the shaping of the world according to the better judgment of the “benevolent superpower.” They will tell you that open-mindedness is a virtue, but all perspectives that challenge the exceptionalist drive at the heart of American foreign policy will remain invisible to them. This is the impenetrable banality of “don’t be evil.” They believe that they are doing good. And that is a problem.

* * *

Google is different. Google is visionary. Google is the future. Google is more than just a company. Google gives back to the community. Google is a force for good.

Even when Google airs its corporate ambivalence publicly, it does little to dislodge these items of faith. The company’s reputation is seemingly unassailable. Google’s colorful, playful logo is imprinted on human retinas just under 6 billion times each day, 2.1 trillion times a year—an opportunity for respondent conditioning enjoyed by no other company in history.

Caught red-handed last year making petabytes of personal data available to the U.S. intelligence community through the PRISM program, Google nevertheless continues to coast on the goodwill generated by its “don’t be evil” doublespeak. A few symbolic open letters to the White House later and it seems all is forgiven. Even anti-surveillance campaigners cannot help themselves, at once condemning government spying but trying to alter Google’s invasive surveillance practices using appeasement strategies.

Nobody wants to acknowledge that Google has grown big and bad. But it has. Schmidt’s tenure as CEO saw Google integrate with the shadiest of U.S. power structures as it expanded into a geographically invasive megacorporation. But Google has always been comfortable with this proximity. Long before company founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin hired Schmidt in 2001, their initial research upon which Google was based had been partly funded by the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA). And even as Schmidt’s Google developed an image as the overly friendly giant of global tech, it was building a close relationship with the intelligence community.

In 2003, the U.S. National Security Agency (NSA) had already started systematically violating the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) under its director General Michael Hayden. These were the days of the “Total Information Awareness” program. Before PRISM was ever dreamed of, under orders from the Bush White House the NSA was already aiming to “collect it all, sniff it all, know it all, process it all, exploit it all.”

During the same period, Google—whose publicly declared corporate mission is to collect and “organize the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful”—was accepting NSA money to the tune of $2 million to provide the agency with search tools for its rapidly accreting hoard of stolen knowledge.

In 2004, after taking over Keyhole, a mapping tech startup co-funded by the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (NGA) and the CIA, Google developed the technology into Google Maps, an enterprise version of which it has since shopped to the Pentagon and associated federal and state agencies on multimillion-dollar contracts.

In 2008, Google helped launch an NGA spy satellite, the GeoEye-1, into space. Google shares the photographs from the satellite with the U.S. military and intelligence communities. In 2010, NGA awarded Google a $27 million contract for “geospatial visualization services.”

In 2010, after the Chinese government was accused of hacking Google, the company entered into a “formal information-sharing” relationship with the NSA, which was said to allow NSA analysts to “evaluate vulnerabilities” in Google’s hardware and software. Although the exact contours of the deal have never been disclosed, the NSA brought in other government agencies to help, including the FBI and the Department of Homeland Security.

Around the same time, Google was becoming involved in a program known as the “Enduring Security Framework” (ESF), which entailed the sharing of information between Silicon Valley tech companies and Pentagon-affiliated agencies “at network speed.” Emails obtained in 2014 under Freedom of Information requests show Schmidt and his fellow Googler Sergey Brin corresponding on first-name terms with NSA chief General Keith Alexander about ESF.

Reportage on the emails focused on the familiarity in the correspondence: “General Keith…so great to see you…!” Schmidt wrote. But most reports over-looked a crucial detail. “Your insights as a key member of the Defense Industrial Base,” Alexander wrote to Brin, “are valuable to ensure ESF’s efforts have measurable impact.”

The Department of Homeland Security defines the Defense Industrial Base as “the worldwide industrial complex that enables research and development, as well as design, production, delivery, and maintenance of military weapons systems, subsystems, and components or parts, to meet U.S. military requirements [emphasis added].” The Defense Industrial Base provides “products and services that are essential to mobilize, deploy, and sustain military operations.”

Does it include regular commercial services purchased by the U.S. military? No. The definition specifically excludes the purchase of regular commercial services. Whatever makes Google a “key member of the Defense Industrial Base,” it is not recruitment campaigns pushed out through Google AdWords or soldiers checking their Gmail.

In 2012, Google arrived on the list of top-spending Washington, D.C., lobbyists—a list typically stalked exclusively by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, military contractors, and the petro-carbon leviathans. Google entered the rankings above military aerospace giant Lockheed Martin, with a total of $18.2 million spent in 2012 to Lockheed’s $15.3 million. Boeing, the military contractor that absorbed McDonnell Douglas in 1997, also came below Google, at $15.6 million spent, as did Northrop Grumman at $17.5 million.

In autumn 2013 the Obama administration was trying to drum up support for U.S. airstrikes against Syria. Despite setbacks, the administration continued to press for military action well into September with speeches and public announcements by both President Obama and Secretary of State John Kerry. On September 10, Google lent its front page—the most popular on the Internet—to the war effort, inserting a line below the search box reading “Live! Secretary Kerry answers questions on Syria. Today via Hangout at 2pm ET.”

As the self-described “radical centrist” New York Times columnist Tom Friedman wrote in 1999, sometimes it is not enough to leave the global dominance of American tech corporations to something as mercurial as “the free market”:

The hidden hand of the market will never work without a hidden fist. McDonald’s cannot flourish without McDonnell Douglas, the designer of the F-15. And the hidden fist that keeps the world safe for Silicon Valley’s technologies to flourish is called the U.S. Army, Air Force, Navy and Marine Corps.

If anything has changed since those words were written, it is that Silicon Valley has grown restless with that passive role, aspiring instead to adorn the hidden fist like a velvet glove. Writing in 2013, Schmidt and Cohen stated,

What Lockheed Martin was to the twentieth century, technology and cyber-security companies will be to the twenty-first.

One way of looking at it is that it’s just business. For an American Internet services monopoly to ensure global market dominance, it cannot simply keep doing what it is doing and let politics take care of itself. American strategic and economic hegemony becomes a vital pillar of its market dominance. What’s a megacorp to do? If it wants to straddle the world, it must become part of the original “don’t be evil” empire.

But part of the resilient image of Google as “more than just a company” comes from the perception that it does not act like a big, bad corporation. Its penchant for luring people into its services trap with gigabytes of “free storage” produces the perception that Google is giving it away for free, acting directly contrary to the corporate profit motive.

Google is perceived as an essentially philanthropic enterprise—a magical engine presided over by otherworldly visionaries—for creating a utopian future. The company has at times appeared anxious to cultivate this image, pouring funding into “corporate responsibility” initiatives to produce “social change”—exemplified by Google Ideas.

But as Google Ideas shows, the company’s “philanthropic” efforts, too, bring it uncomfortably close to the imperial side of U.S. influence. If Blackwater/Xe Services/Academi was running a program like Google Ideas, it would draw intense critical scrutiny. But somehow Google gets a free pass.

Whether it is being just a company or “more than just a company,” Google’s geopolitical aspirations are firmly enmeshed within the foreign-policy agenda of the world’s largest superpower. As Google’s search and Internet service monopoly grows, and as it enlarges its industrial surveillance cone to cover the majority of the world’s population, rapidly dominating the mobile phone market and racing to extend Internet access in the global south, Google is steadily becoming the Internet for many people. Its influence on the choices and behavior of the totality of individual human beings translates to real power to influence the course of history.

If the future of the Internet is to be Google, that should be of serious concern to people all over the world—in Latin America, East and Southeast Asia, the Indian subcontinent, the Middle East, sub-Saharan Africa, the former Soviet Union and even in Europe—for whom the Internet embodies the promise of an alternative to U.S. cultural, economic, and strategic hegemony.

A “don’t be evil” empire is still an empire.

Extracted from When Google Met Wikileaks by Julian Assange published by OR Books. Newsweek readers can obtain a 20 percent discount on the cover price when ordering from the OR Books website and including the offer code word NEWSWEEK.

     
  Guide to Agorism & Counter Economics

Submitter: [anonymous]
Category: News / Articles - Government / Politics
exhibition Date: 2018-03-11 23:51:06
Views: 182
Score: 5.00 / 5.00 (Based on 1 votes.)
 

     
  States mull 'sanctuary' status for weed businesses

Submitter: [anonymous]
Category: News / Articles - Government / Politics
exhibition Date: 2018-03-05 02:31:47
Last Update: 2018-03-07 00:44:22
Views: 164
Score: 5.00 / 5.00 (Based on 2 votes.)
 
The Associated Press — By BECKY BOHRER - Associated Press
1/7
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — Taking a cue from the fight over immigration, some states that have legalized marijuana are considering providing so-called sanctuary status for licensed pot businesses, hoping to protect the fledgling industry from a shift in federal enforcement policy.

Just hours after U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced on Jan. 4 that federal prosecutors would be free to crack down on marijuana operations as they see fit, Jesse Arreguin, the mayor in Berkeley, California, summoned city councilman Ben Bartlett to his office with a novel idea.

Berkeley was already the first city in the nation to formally declare itself a sanctuary city on immigration, barring city officials from cooperating with federal authorities. Why not do the same thing with marijuana? Last month, it did.

     
  Stop the Kratom Ban by Corrupt Officials!

Submitter: [anonymous]
Category: News / Articles - Government / Politics
exhibition Date: 2018-02-20 20:29:24
Last Update: 2018-02-20 20:31:57
Views: 109
Score: (not yet rated)
 
On 31 August 2016 the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) announced its intention to place the active materials in the Kratom plant into Schedule I of the Controlled Substances Act in order to avoid an imminent hazard to public safety. According to the DEA press release \\\"Kratom is abused for its ability to produce opioid-like effects and is often marketed as a legal alternative to controlled substances. Law enforcement nationwide has seized more Kratom in the first half of 2016 than any previous year and easily accounts for millions of dosages intended for the recreational market, according to DEA findings. In addition, Kratom has a high potential for abuse, has no currently accepted medical use in treatment in the United States, and has a lack of accepted safety for use under medical supervision. These three factors constitute a Schedule I controlled substance according to the Controlled Substances Act passed by Congress in 1970.

Schedule I drugs, substances, or chemicals are defined as drugs with no currently accepted medical use and a high potential for abuse. This is not true for Kratom, it has been shown numerous times in reports from users to help recovering Opiate addicts, treat pain, combat depression and anxiety, and much more. Deaths that involve Kratom being a persons\\\' system have always been from the result of mixing Kratom with other drugs, rather than Kratom alone. In states that banned Kratom, Alabama specifically, opiate usage and deaths went up after Kratom was banned in the state. Please stop the DEA from scheduling Kratom as Schedule I, there are many people who will suffer from this.

What is Kratom?
Kratom (Mitragyna speciosa) refers to the leaves of a South East Asian tree closely related to the coffee plant. Like coffee, it has stimulating effects. In large doses, Kratom acts as a sedative and supports the body’s ability to deal with everyday minor aches and pains. It has been used for medicinal purpose in traditional South Eastern medicine for several hundred years.

Mitragyna speciosa has been used by manual laborers to provide energy, positive mood, and to help mitigate everyday aches and pains of the back breaking manual labor associated with agriculture in rural Southeast Asia. It has also been used as an anti-diarrheal against dysentery in the regions that it is native. Here in the U.S., it is primarily used for its mild stimulant effects similar to coffee that promotes a positive and energized state of well being. It is also an important medicinal herb that helps to relax the body and ease life’s every day minor aches and pains.

Kratom has many benefits for those who use it responsibly including beneficial effects on supporting positive mood, energy, immune function, and assisting those who experience various minor aches and pains.

Kratom is remarkably safe when used in a responsible manner. According to the CDC, cigarette smoking causes 440,000 deaths in the United States every year; about one of every five deaths in this country are caused by cigarettes. Alcohol causes more than 1.2 million emergency room visits and 2.7 million physician office visits due to excessive drinking each year. Pharmaceutical drugs are one of the leading causes of death in this country, killing one American every 19 minutes. Prescription opiate pain killers account for more than 475,000 emergency room visits annually. Over-the-counter pain relievers such as Tylenol send over 56,000 people to the emergency room each year with liver-related complications. Between 2011 and 2014, over 11,000 reports were made to Poison Control centers on energy drinks alone. Kratom has never caused a single recorded death and as is about as habit-forming as coffee.

New users are trying Kratom every day after hearing about successful experiences with this plant from friends or stories posted online.
In small amounts, Kratom is energizing like a cup of coffee or tea. Most people that use Kratom say that it gives them an uplifting feeling to their mood and cognitive state. Kratom can also give the feeling of a sense of deep contentment and well-being. In larg doses, Kratom can give the user euphoric feelings. This is likely the result of the mitragynine alkaloid which has been found to offer anti-depressant like qualities. Kratom has also been called an intense focus booster. There are reviews from some users who say it improved ADD/ADHD symptoms, making their thoughts clear and making it easier to concentrate. While supporting a positive mood, Kratom can also calm you down and help rid your mind of stressful thoughts. Kratom is also reported to reduce feelings of nervousness and help ease both physical and mental exhaustion.

Mitragyna Speciosa has been used by many as an effective alternative to prescription pain-killers. Kratom acts similarly to morphine to relieve temporary or chronic pain. Kratom has been reported to relieve conditions from headaches/migraines, muscle pain and soreness as well as chronic pain that has been resistant to prescription medications. Kratom is viewed by some as a much safer and less addictive treatment than some of the addictive medications currently being prescribed.

Another effect of Kratom is its ability to improve the quality of sleep. Kratom helps to turn off your mind before going to bed and put you into a restful state making it easier to fall asleep and wake feeling more refreshed and ready to take on your day. It has also been reported that Kratom usage can enhance your social experiences rid the mind of the anxieties associated with social interaction.

One of the most important uses for Kratom is to ease the effects associated with opiate withdrawal. Kratom is said to offer serious assistance in reducing the effects of withdrawal and reduce the cravings for opiates.

Come join us to show your support for Kratom and its positive uses. For more information please contact us @ info@KratomMarchDC.com.

×
*THE PUBLIC HAS TO ENGAGE THE DEA* Call (202) 307-1000
ENGAGE THE DEA Call (202) 307-1000
The DEA is Not Following the Letter and Spirit of Law. We Need to Stop the Temporary Scheduling Order and Replace It With a Standard Public Comment Period and Process Including Other Federal Agencies That Have Already Studied Kratom and Recommended More Research

Inform the DEA that you would like to continue to take this herbal supplement as a part of your healthy life style. Tell them how your life will be worse if #Kratom is made illegal

*Also Call your Senators & Congressman and Ask for Their Support*

Call Your 2 State Senators to Confirm They are Supporting The Hatch Dear Colleague Letter That Ask\\\'s The DEA to Delay The Kratom Scheduling Order Call (202) 224-3121 Option #1 and Enter Your Zip Code Search For Your Rep @ www.senate.gov/index.htm
Call Your Congressman to Confirm They are Supporting The Pocan/Salmon Dear Colleague letter That Also Ask the DEA to Delay the Ban on Kratom Call (202) 224-3121 and press option #2. Enter your zip code. Search For Your Rep @ www.house.gov
If Kratom Stays Legal It Will Be Because of You #IamKratom

     
  US police killings undercounted by half study

Submitter: [anonymous]
Category: News / Articles - Government / Politics
exhibition Date: 2017-10-21 04:02:22
Views: 173
Score: 5.00 / 5.00 (Based on 2 votes.)
 
Over half of all police killings in 2015 were wrongly classified as not having been the result of interactions with officers, a new Harvard study based on Guardian data has found.

The finding is just the latest to show government databases seriously undercounting the number of people killed by police.

“Right now the data quality is bad and unacceptable,” said lead researcher Justin Feldman. “To effectively address the problem of law enforcement-related deaths, the public needs better data about who is being killed, where, and under what circumstances.”

Young black men again faced highest rate of US police killings in 2016
The Counted project points to continuing racial disparities, with black males aged 15-34 nine times more likely than other Americans to be killed
Read more
Feldman used data from the Guardian’s 2015 investigation into police killings, The Counted, and compared it with data from the National Vital Statistics System (NVSS). That dataset, which is kept by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), was found to have misclassified 55.2% of all police killings, with the errors occurring disproportionately in low-income jurisdictions.

“As with any public health outcome or exposure, the only way to understand the magnitude of the problem, and whether it is getting better or worse, requires that data be uniformly, validly, and reliably obtained throughout the US,” said Nancy Krieger, professor of social epidemiology at Harvard’s Chan School of Public Health and senior author of the study. “Our results show our country is falling short of accurately monitoring deaths due to law enforcement and work is needed to remedy this problem.”

     
  Florida Resident Faces False Drug Charges

Submitter: Limitless
Category: News / Articles - Government / Politics
exhibition Date: 2017-02-16 15:22:36
Views: 316
Score: 5.00 / 5.00 (Based on 1 votes.)
 
Florida Resident Facing False Drug Charges & Possible Loss of Right to Bear Arms After Getting Mistakenly Arrested When Assault Victim.

     
  Drug Decriminalization in Portugal CATO Institute

Submitter: [anonymous]
Category: News / Articles - Government / Politics
exhibition Date: 2016-07-16 06:10:31
Last Update: 2016-07-16 06:11:10
Views: 430
Score: 5.00 / 5.00 (Based on 1 votes.)
 
On July 1, 2001, a nationwide law in Portugal took effect that decriminalized all drugs, including cocaine and heroin. Under the new legal framework, all drugs were “decriminalized,” not “legalized.” Thus, drug possession for personal use and drug usage itself are still legally prohibited, but violations of those prohibitions are deemed to be exclusively administrative violations and are removed completely from the criminal realm. Drug trafficking continues to be prosecuted as a criminal offense.

While other states in the European Union have developed various forms of de facto decriminalization — whereby substances perceived to be less serious (such as cannabis) rarely lead to criminal prosecution — Portugal remains the only EU member state with a law explicitly declaring drugs to be “decriminalized.” Because more than seven years have now elapsed since enactment of Portugal’s decriminalization system, there are ample data enabling its effects to be assessed.

     
  The Truth About M855 5.56 NATO Ammunition

Submitter: [anonymous]
Category: News / Articles - Government / Politics
exhibition Date: 2015-09-15 11:18:18
Views: 639
Score: (not yet rated)
 
The Truth About M855 5.56 NATO Ammunition
By Nick Leghorn on March 3, 2015

The White House has said recently that banning “armor piercing” ammunition like the wildly popular M855 round is “common sense” and would make our police officers safer, which is a bold claim. Given the quality of journalism on display among the major networks these days, its no surprise that the facts of the matter have been muddled and obfuscated to the point where the details being presented bear little to no resemblance to the actual facts. Some hyperbole is expected, but in an age when the talking heads on TV start claiming that common rifles can shoot down airplanes and blow up railroads you know that fact checking isn’t high on the priority list. I wanted to take a minute and discuss the truth about the M855 round, what it is, what it does, and why it is being targeted.

When the M-16 was first fielded by the U.S. military, the ammunition that accompanied it was designated the M193 cartridge — a standard “ball” 5.56 round. The 55 grain projectile was of the same construction that had been used in similar projectiles for close to a century, namely a solid lead core surrounded by a copper jacket.

The original specifications for the M-16 rifle were that it needed to penetrate the steel helmet of an enemy soldier at a given distance, and while the lighter overall weight of the projectile reduced the penetration power of the projectile at long distance the designers of the ammunition compensated with increased velocity. Increased velocity meant increased muzzle energy, and provided the power to meet the specifications. That faster yet lighter bullet meant that the cartridges were lighter, and therefore the soldier on the field could carry more ammunition into battle than ever before. Even with the lighter projectile, that “armor piercing” capability was still maintained throughout the design process.

After the Vietnam war, there were some deficiencies that needed to be addressed. Soldiers in the field reported issues with the projectile when it penetrated glass or other intermediate barriers, and wanted a heavier projectile to aid in energy transfer to targets downrange (putting down enemy soldiers more efficiently). While the military did adopt a 77 grain lead projectile for long range shooting, they developed the M855 projectile specifically for hitting targets behind light barriers (like glass and tin and heavy clothing).

m855

The internal construction of an M855 round differs from the standard “ball” M193 cartridge in one very important way: there’s a steel core at the tip of the projectile. The solid steel tip added much needed stability to the projectile when traveling through barriers since there was no longer any soft lead to deform upon impact, and increased the stability and accuracy of the round when traveling over long distances due to the increased mass of the projectile.

There were still some major issues, though. As the barrel length of commonly used firearms continued to decrease, the velocity of the round when it exited the barrel decreased as well. The 5.56 NATO cartridge is highly dependent on velocity to generate the energy it transfers to targets, and lower velocity means a much lower muzzle energy. Some of the most recent studies indicate that with a common 16″ barrel, M855 ammunition has severely degraded performance past 150 yards and is only effective to about 500 meters (versus the 600 meters at which it was designed to penetrate a steel helmet with a standard M-16).

Another issue was the lack of expansion. The lead core in normal “ball” ammunition expands upon impact, which increases the diameter of the projectile and aids in transferring energy from the moving projectile to the target. The more energy is transferred, the greater the wound in the target and the more likely it is to stop that target. Using a steel tip meant that the bullets no longer deformed, and therefore the energy transferred to the target was less than with “ball” 5.56. In other words, the M855 ammunition is actually considered to be less effective against living targets than “ball” 55 grain 5.56 ammo. Or, put another way, standard lead ammunition is considered more deadly than M855.

Wile the Army has moved on to an improved version of the M855 projectile, the cartridge has become popular with long range shooters and hunters. Especially for those hunting hogs in the thick brush of the American south, the M855 cartridge has proven to be capable of accurately and effectively hitting a target even after passing through a couple layers of leaves and underbrush. Its also popular among helicopter hog depredation expeditions for the same reason: it punches through the trees and hits the target. And since the cartridge was developed and produced for the military, a massive quantity of the ammunition is produced every year which leads to low prices for recreational shooters looking for a cheap way to feed their firearms. In short, what was once a “military” round has transitioned very well to civilian life.

In recent days, the projectile has come under increased scrutiny as the ATF prepares to ban it based on the existing prohibition on “Armor Piercing” ammunition. As for what exactly constitutes “armor piercing” ammunition, there is a very specific legal definition that is being used. The following is directly from 18 U.S. Code § 921:

(17)
(A) The term “ammunition” means ammunition or cartridge cases, primers, bullets, or propellent powder designed for use in any firearm.
(B) The term “armor piercing ammunition” means—
(i) a projectile or projectile core which may be used in a handgun and which is constructed entirely (excluding the presence of traces of other substances) from one or a combination of tungsten alloys, steel, iron, brass, bronze, beryllium copper, or depleted uranium; or
(ii) a full jacketed projectile larger than .22 caliber designed and intended for use in a handgun and whose jacket has a weight of more than 25 percent of the total weight of the projectile.
(C) The term “armor piercing ammunition” does not include shotgun shot required by Federal or State environmental or game regulations for hunting purposes, a frangible projectile designed for target shooting, a projectile which the Attorney General finds is primarily intended to be used for sporting purposes, or any other projectile or projectile core which the Attorney General finds is intended to be used for industrial purposes, including a charge used in an oil and gas well perforating device.

What is important to note is that the defining feature of “armor piercing” ammunition is not the actual function of the projectile, but instead the construction. It is possible to construct a cartridge using an “armor piercing” projectile that can’t even pierce skin, but if the construction meets the above criteria then it is illegal.

SIG_SAUER_SIGTac_SB15_Pistol_Stabilizing_Brace_on_SIG_MCX_Tactical_Piston_AR_Carbine_SBR_Nick_Leghorn_The_Truth_About_Guns_TTAG_at_SIG_SAUER_Headquarters_New_Media_Writers_Event_2014_David_Crane_DefenseReview.com_DR_1

What has made this change in regulation possible is the prevalence of the AR-15 pistol. Brought to astounding levels of popularity in recent years by the pistol stabilizing brace, the AR-15 pistol is legally a handgun as far as the U.S. government is concerned, and therefore 5.56 ammunition has become by default “projectile […] which may be used in a handgun.” As such, 5.56 NATO ammunition is now subject to regulation under 18 U.S. Code § 921(17)(B).

Technically, M855 ammunition fails to meet the criteria for an “armor piercing” projectile. The requirement of the law is that the projectile be comprised entirely of steel (with trace elements allowed) in order to be classified as “armor piercing,” but as you can see nearly 80% of the mass of the M855 projectile is comprised of standard lead — not steel. However, due to the imprecise wording of the statute it is possible for the ATF and the Attorney General to interpret the law in such a way that M855 meets the required criteria.

This kind of move has been made before. The government classified cheap and commonly available steel core 7.62×39 ammunition as “armor piercing” and banned it from the United States in 1992, as well as 7N6 5.45×39 ammunition only last year. The reasons were the same: with the increase in pistol versions of the AK-47 and AK-74 rifle being produced, the ammunition was now technically a handgun caliber and the broad interpretation of the statute allowed them to take action against those specific projectiles.



The current claim by the White House that M855 ammunition is especially and specifically dangerous due to its “armor piercing” capabilities is, in a word, laughable. The fact is that standard 5.56 ammunition — “ball” ammunition with a traditional lead core — can pierce a “bullet proof” vest just as easily as M855, a fact we have conclusively proven through our own testing. So can commonly available .308 Winchester ammunition, one of the most popular “hunting” cartridges in the world. So can .30-06 Springfield, the “traditional” hunting cartridge in the United States. In fact, almost every full-size and even every intermediate rifle caliber is perfectly capable of piercing the bullet proof vest worn by police officers. The idea that removing this one single projectile from circulation will reduce the lethality of firearms in the United States is quite literally insane.

Let’s look at this from another perspective. According to commonly accepted research, fewer than 2% of crimes are committed with “assault weapons,” including the AR-15 rifle (and pistol variants) that accept this caliber. Note that the most commonly available 5.56 ammunition is 55 grain “ball” ammo and not M855, so even if every single one of those crimes was committed with an AR-15 (which they were not) the probability of M855 ammunition being used in the gun is even smaller than 2%. Even if M855 ammunition was banned, standard “ball” M193 ammunition fails to meet the definition of an “armor piercing” round and therefore is exempt from any possible ban. M193 is plentiful, and available at almost every Wal-Mart in America. Removing M855 ammunition would require a vast amount of effort on the part of the government to implement the ban, impact less than 2% of crimes, and do exactly nothing to remove ammunition that is capable of piercing a “bullet proof” vest from the market. In short, you might as well call whoever is championing this ban “Sisyphus.”

The truth is that, despite the composition of the projectile, M855 ammunition is no greater a threat than any other standard “ball” projectile — traditional hunting rounds included. The 5.56 cartridge has been implicated in far fewer than 2% of crimes in the United States (and M855 in fewer still), and even if it were removed from circulation the remaining millions upon millions of 100% legal projectiles would be able to perform the same function nearly as well. In addition, the projectile has found a legitimate sporting purpose among hunters and sportsmen that the Attorney General has refused to acknowledge. However, due to the lack of any movement on any other front on the issue of gun control, it appears that M855 ammunition has become an unfortunate casualty of a political agenda hell-bent on doing as much damage to American gun owners as possible before leaving office.

     
  Terms and Conditions May Apply

Submitter: [anonymous]
Category: News / Articles - Government / Politics
exhibition Date: 2015-05-16 13:35:02
Last Update: 2015-05-16 14:24:17
Views: 619
Score: (not yet rated)
 
2015

     
  The Hacker Wars - Anonymous Documentary 2015

Submitter: [anonymous]
Category: News / Articles - Government / Politics
exhibition Date: 2015-05-16 08:54:32
Last Update: 2015-06-16 08:04:06
Views: 594
Score: (not yet rated)
 
Published on Apr 22, 2015
Ripped from international headlines, The Hacker Wars takes you to the front lines of the high-stakes battle over the fate of the Internet, freedom and privacy. The Hacker Wars tells the tales of the anarchic troll provocateur Andrew “weev” Aurenheimer, prodigy hacker hero Jeremy Hammond, and incendiary watchdog journalist Barrett Brown — three larger than life characters whose separate quests to expose the secrets of empire hurled them into a fateful collision course with shadowy corporations, the FBI, and ultimate betrayal by one of their own.

Featuring interviews with Pulitzer Prize winning journalist Glenn Greenwald, Pulitzer Prize winning journalist Chris Hedges, NSA whistleblower Thomas Drake, The Hacker Wars traces the steps that led from the Internet’s murkiest corners to the heavy shadow of censorship and a century’s worth of prison time.

Internationally acclaimed filmmaker Vivien Lesnik Weisman melds her distinctively subversively bent style with the real life stories of the cyberpunk vanguards who blur the line between hacking and activism. Locked in a murky conflict against world governments, these so-called hacktivists are waging a life-or-death struggle for the freedom of public information and the defense of privacy under siege.

     
  US Police Have Killed 5,000+ Civilians Since 9/11

Submitter: [anonymous]
Category: News / Articles - Government / Politics
exhibition Date: 2014-08-17 16:40:52
Last Update: 2014-08-17 16:42:17
Views: 901
Score: 5.00 / 5.00 (Based on 4 votes.)
 
US Police Have Killed Over 5,000 Civilians Since 9/11
Statistically speaking, Americans should be more fearful of the local cops than “terrorists.”
By Katie Rucke @katierucke | November 6, 2013

Though Americans commonly believe law enforcements role in society is to protect them and ensure peace and stability within the community, the sad reality is that police departments are often more focused on enforcing laws, making arrests and issuing citations. As a result of this as well as an increase in militarized policing techniques, Americans are eight times more likely to be killed by a police officer than by a terrorist, estimates a Washington’s Blog report based on official statistical data.

Though the U.S. government does not have a database collecting information about the total number of police involved shootings each year, it’s estimated that between 500 and 1,000 Americans are killed by police officers each year. Since 9/11, about 5,000 Americans have been killed by U.S. police officers, which is almost equivalent to the number of U.S. soldiers who have been killed in the line of duty in Iraq.

Because individual police departments are not required to submit information regarding the use of deadly force by its officers, some bloggers have taken it upon themselves to aggregate that data. Wikipedia also has a list of “justifiable homicides” in the U.S., which was created by documenting publicized deaths.

Mike Prysner, one of the local directors of the Los Angeles chapter for ANSWER — an advocacy group that asks the public to Act Now to Stop War and End Racism — told Mint Press News earlier this year that the “epidemic” of police harassment and violence is a nationwide issue.

He said groups like ANSWER are trying to hold officers accountable for abuse of power. “[Police brutality] has been an issue for a very long time,” Prysner said, explaining that in May, 13 people were killed in Southern California by police.

As Mint Press News previously reported, each year there are thousands of claims of police misconduct. According to the CATO Institute’s National Police Misconduct Reporting Project, in 2010 there were 4,861 unique reports of police misconduct involving 6,613 sworn officers and 6,826 alleged victims.

Most of those allegations of police brutality involved officers who punched or hit victims with batons, but about one-quarter of the reported cases involved firearms or stun guns.

Racist policing
A big element in the police killings, Prysner says, is racism. “A big majority of those killed are Latinos and Black people,” while the police officers are mostly White, he said. “It’s a badge of honor to shoot gang members so [the police] go out and shoot people who look like gang members,” Prysner argued, giving the example of 34-year-old Rigoberto Arceo, who was killed by police on May 11.

According to a report from the Los Angeles Times, Arceo, who was a biomedical technician at St. Francis Medical Center, was shot and killed after getting out of his sister’s van. The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department says Arceo “advanced on the deputy and attempted to take the deputy’s gun.” However, Arceo’s sister and 53-year-old Armando Garcia — who was barbecuing in his yard when the incident happened — say that Arceo had his hands above his head the entire time.

Prysner is not alone in his assertion that race is a major factor in officer-related violence. This past May, a study from the the Malcolm X Grassroots Movement, an anti-racist activist organization, found that police officers, security guards or self-appointed vigilantes killed at least 313 Black people in 2012 — meaning one Black person was killed in the U.S. by law enforcement roughly every 28 hours.

Prysner said the relationship between police departments and community members needs to change and that when police shoot an unarmed person with their arms in the air over their head, the officer should be punished.

Culture of misconduct
“You cannot have a police force that is investigating and punishing itself,” Prysner said, adding that taxpayer money should be invested into the community instead of given to police to buy more guns, assault rifles and body armor.

Dissatisfied with police departments’ internal review policies, some citizens have formed volunteer police watch groups to prevent the so-called “Blue Code of Silence” effect and encourage police officers to speak out against misconduct occurring within their department.

As Mint Press News previously reported, a report released earlier this year found that of the 439 cases of police misconduct that then had been brought before the Minneapolis’s year-old misconduct review board, not one of the police officers involved has been disciplined.

Although the city of Minneapolis spent $14 million in payouts for alleged police misconduct between 2006 and 2012, despite the fact that the Minneapolis Police Department often concluded that the officers involved in those cases did nothing wrong.

Other departments have begun banning equipment such as Tasers, but those decisions were likely more about protecting the individual departments from lawsuits than ensuring that officers are not equipped with weapons that cause serious and sometimes fatal injuries when used.

To ensure officers are properly educated on how to use their weapons and are aware of police ethics, conflict resolution and varying cultures within a community, police departments have historically held training programs for all officers. But due to tighter budgets and a shift in priorities, many departments have not provided the proper continuing education training programs for their officers.

Charles Ramsey, president of both the Major Cities Chiefs Association and the Police Executive Research Forum, called that a big mistake, explaining that it is essential officers are trained and prepared for high-stress situations:

“Not everybody is going to be able to make those kinds of good decisions under pressure, but I do think that the more reality-based training that we provide, the more we put people in stressful situations to make them respond and make them react.”



GI Joe replaces Carl Winslow
In order to help local police officers protect themselves while fighting the largely unsuccessful War on Drugs, the federal government passed legislation in 1994 allowing the Pentagon to donate surplus military equipment from the Cold War to local police departments. Meaning that “weaponry designed for use on a foreign battlefield has been handed over for use on American streets … against American citizens.”

So while the U.S. military fights the War on Terror abroad, local police departments are fighting another war at home with some of the same equipment as U.S. troops, and protocol that largely favors officers in such tactics as no-knock raids.

Radley Balko, author of “Rise of the Warrior Cop,” wrote in the Wall Street Journal in August:

“Since the 1960s, in response to a range of perceived threats, law-enforcement agencies across the U.S., at every level of government, have been blurring the line between police officer and soldier.

“Driven by martial rhetoric and the availability of military-style equipment—from bayonets and M-16 rifles to armored personnel carriers—American police forces have often adopted a mind-set previously reserved for the battlefield. The war on drugs and, more recently, post-9/11 antiterrorism efforts have created a new figure on the U.S. scene: the warrior cop—armed to the teeth, ready to deal harshly with targeted wrongdoers, and a growing threat to familiar American liberties.”

As Mint Press News previously reported, statistics from an FBI report released in September reveal that a person is arrested on marijuana-related charges in the U.S. every 48 seconds, on average — most were for simple possession charges.

According to the FBI’s report, there were more arrests for marijuana possession than for the violent crimes of murder and nonnegligent manslaughter, forcible rape, robbery and aggravated assault — 658,231 compared with 521,196 arrests.

While groups that advocate against police brutality recognize and believe that law enforcement officials should be protected while on duty, many say that local police officers do not need to wear body armor, Kevlar helmets and tactical equipment vests — all while carrying assault weapons.

“We want the police to keep up with the latest technology. That’s critical,” American Civil Liberties Union senior counsel Kara Dansky said. “But policing should be about protection, not combat.”

According to the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund, there are more than 900,000 sworn law enforcement officers in the United States. In 2012, 120 officers were killed in the line of duty. The deadliest day in law enforcement history was reportedly Sept. 11, 2001, when 72 officers were killed.

Despite far fewer officers dying in the line of duty compared with American citizens, police departments are not only increasing their use of protective and highly volatile gear, but are increasingly setting aside a portion of their budget to invest in new technology such as drones, night vision goggles, remote robots, surveillance cameras, license plate readers and armored vehicles that amount to unarmed tanks.

Though some officers are on board with the increased militarization and attend conferences such as the annual Urban Shield event, others have expressed concern with the direction the profession is heading.

For example, former Arizona police officer Jon W. McBride said police concerns about being “outgunned” were likely a “self-fulfilling prophecy.” He added that “if not expressly prohibited, police managers will continually push the arms race,” because “their professional literature is predominately [sic] based on the acquiring and use of newer weapons and more aggressive techniques to physically overwhelm the public. In many cases, however, this is the opposite of smart policing.”

“Coupled with the paramilitary design of the police bureaucracy itself, the police give in to what is already a serious problem in the ranks: the belief that the increasing use of power against a citizen is always justified no matter the violation. The police don’t understand that in many instances they are the cause of the escalation and bear more responsibility during an adverse outcome.

“The suspects I encountered as a former police officer and federal agent in nearly all cases granted permission for me to search their property when asked, often despite unconcealed contraband. Now, instead of making a simple request of a violator, many in law enforcement seem to take a more difficult and confrontational path, fearing personal risk. In many circumstances they inflame the citizens they are engaging, thereby needlessly putting themselves in real and increased jeopardy.”

Another former police officer who wished to remain anonymous agreed with McBride and told Balko,

“American policing really needs to return to a more traditional role of cops keeping the peace; getting out of police cars, talking to people, and not being prone to overreaction with the use of firearms, tasers, or pepper spray. … Don’t get me wrong, I’ve been in more than my share tussles and certainly appreciate the dangers of police work, but as Joseph Wambaugh famously said, the real danger is psychological, not physical.”