Justices Find that Spied-On Telephone Customers Have the Right to Sue
San Francisco – The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals today blocked the government’s attempt to bury the Electronic Frontier Foundation’s (EFF’s) lawsuit against the government’s illegal mass surveillance program, returning Jewel v. NSA to the District Court for the next step.
The court found that Jewel had alleged sufficient specifics about the warrantless wiretapping program to proceed. Justices rejected the government’s argument that the allegations about the well-known spying program and the evidence of the Folsom Street facility in San Francisco were too speculative.
“Since the dragnet spying program first came to light, we have been fighting for the chance to have a court determine whether it is legal,” said EFF Legal Director Cindy Cohn. “Today, the Ninth Circuit has given us that chance, and we look forward to proving the program is an unconstitutional and illegal violation of the rights of millions of ordinary Americans.”
Also today, the court upheld the dismissal of EFF’s other case aimed at ending the illegal spying, Hepting v. AT&T, which was the first lawsuit against a telecom over its participation in the dragnet domestic wiretapping. The court found that the so-called “retroactive immunity” passed by Congress to stop telecommunications customers from suing the companies is constitutional, in part because the claims remained against the government in Jewel v. NSA.
“By passing the retroactive immunity for the telecoms’ complicity in the warrantless wiretapping program, Congress abdicated its duty… Continue reading
By Charlie Savage
November 29, 2011
New York Times
WASHINGTON — Defying the Obama administration’s threat of a veto, the Senate on Tuesday voted to increase the role of the military in imprisoning suspected members of Al Qaeda and its allies — including people arrested inside the United States.
By a vote of 61 to 37, the Senate turned back an effort to strip a major military bill of a set of disputed provisions affecting the handling of terrorism cases. While the legislation still has several steps to go, the vote makes it likely that Congress will eventually send to President Obama’s desk a bill that contains detainee-related provisions his national-security team has said are unacceptable.
The most disputed provision would require the government to place into military custody any suspected member of Al Qaeda or one of its allies connected to a plot against the United States or its allies. The provision would exempt American citizens, but would otherwise extend to arrests on United States soil. The executive branch could issue a waiver and keep such a prisoner in the civilian system.
In recent days, several top national security officials — including the secretary of defense, Leon E. Panetta; the director of national intelligence, James R. Clapper; and the director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Robert S. Mueller III, have voiced opposition to the proposal, as have several former counterterrorism officials from the Bush administration.
But among Republican senators, there was nearly unanimous support for keeping the detainee… Continue reading
December 26, 2011
The 1995 bombing in Oklahoma City was a direct blow to the heart of America. One hundred sixty-eight people were killed, including nineteen children. For those watching the nightly news, terrorism had come home. For years following the bombing, countless victims’ family members, survivors, rescuers and ordinary Americans have questioned the official accounts about that fateful day.
Hoping to shed light on answers long ignored and censored, both by prominent media outlets and the U.S. government, A Noble Lie peels back what we thought we knew about the bombing and its perpetrators. This film exposes information never before examined or brought to the attention of the American public.
A Noble Lie is the culmination of years of research and documentation conducted by independent journalists, scholars and ordinary citizens. Often risking their personal safety and sanity, they have gathered evidence which threatens to expose the startling reality of what exactly occurred at 9:02 am on April 19, 1995 in Oklahoma City.
Utilizing footage and eyewitness testimony, previously unseen,
A Noble Lie will change forever the way you look at the true nature of terrorism.
Why Ron Paul Can Win
by James Jaeger
If you have been watching the news, you know that Ron Paul is now beating both Gingrich and Romney in the polls and could walk away with a win in Iowa.
Some say he could also walk away with a win in New Hampshire, and possibly even win the Republican (GOP) nomination.
For the Republican National Committee (RNC), this must be uncomfortable − the idea that they would be forced to nominate a principled, Constitutionalist just because WE THE PEOPLE demanded it.
But here’s what really terrifies them: Ron Paul is in a position to hand the election of 2012 over to Barack Obama and the Democrats because he would be a “spoiler.” But even… Continue reading
by Jon Gold
December 20, 2011
Before I begin, I’d like to say that I am neither a fan of Iran, or an opponent of Iran. I just don’t want anymore damn wars.
Recently, a Judge ruled “that Iran was complicit in the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorists attacks that killed nearly 3,000 people, including 18 Bucks County residents.” Here is the evidence according to the article:
Using a team of experts, including former members of the 9/11 Commission, and the testimony of three Iranian defectors, the lawyers put on a four-hour presentation for Daniels on Thursday.
During the hearing, defector Abdolghassem Mesbahi, who was once an aide and close confidant of Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, the Islamic Republic’s founder, revealed that he had firsthand knowledge of terrorist plots dating to the 1980s.
Mesbahi, whose identity was kept secret until the hearing, said he knew in August 2001 that there was a plan in place to hijack airplanes and fly them into buildings.
Another defector testified that he was with al-Qaida’s second in command, Ayman al-Zawahiri, when the terrorist attended four days of meetings with top Iranian officials in January 2001 to plan the 9/11 attacks.
The third defector told the judge that he helped write up the debriefing reports of Iran’s al-Qaida liaison, Imad Mugniyeh, after he returned to Iran from Afghanistan following 9/11.
To further prove Iran’s complicity in the attacks, Mellon presented the testimony of Janice Kephart, a former counsel to the U.S. Senate Judiciary Subcommittee on Technology, Terrorism… Continue reading
Engineering Consent For Attack On Iran
US Court Claims Iranian 9/11 Link
By RT (Russia Today)
December 17, 2011 — A US court has won a default judgement that Iranian officials, including its supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, provided help to the 9/11 hijackers behind the worst terror attack on American soil. The lawsuit was filed by the families of the atrocity’s victims. There was no Iranian representation in court. RT talks to Michel Chossudovsky, Director of the Center for Research on Globalization.
Iran Accused Of 9/11 Role
By Fox News
May 20, 2011 “Fox News” — NEW YORK: Two defectors from Iran’s intelligence service have testified that Iranian officials knew in advance about the attacks of September 11, 2001, says a US court filing that seeks damages for Iran’s “direct support for, and sponsorship of, the most deadly act of terrorism in American history”.
Iran Accused Of September 11 Role To Plan, Train & Escape WTC Attacks 21/5/11:
One of the defectors also claimed that Iran was involved in designing the attacks, the filing said. The defectors’ identities and testimony were not revealed in the filing but were being submitted to a judge under seal, said lawyers who brought the original suit against Iran on behalf of families of dozens of September 11 victims.
The suit says Iran and Hezbollah, the Lebanese militant group with close ties to Tehran, helped al-Qaeda with planning the attacks and with the hijackers’ training and travel. After the attacks, the suit says, Iran and Hezbollah helped al-Qaeda operatives and their families to escape, in some cases providing them with a safe haven in Iran.…Continue reading
Last week Elizabeth Woodworth, Coordinator and Co-Founder of the 9/11 Consensus Panel joined host Jack Etkin on “Face to Face” for a 30-minute interview. The show aired four times this week in the Victoria, BC area and is now available online. Here’s more.
Description from YouTube (user channel of ictvvictoria):
This week our guest is retired medical librarian Elizabeth Woodworth, who coordinates a newly formed panel calling itself “Consensus 9/11″ — which recently announced the release of statements constituting 13 Consensus Points” challenging the official government account of the events of September 11, 2001. Co-chaired by Elizabeth and scholar David Ray Griffin, the points were produced using a version of a methodology designed to identify best evidence known as the Delphi method. According to Woodworth, “The strength and credibility of the Delphi method is based on the fact that respondents are blind to one another through several rounds of review, during which feedback is continually refined until consensus is reached.” The Consensus 9/11 panel conducted “three survey rounds with 22 respondents, and reached an average consensus of 94% on 13 points of evidence that directly contradict the fundamental claims of the official account of September 11th.”
The survey points, backed by 81 literature references, include failures of the government to explain massive explosions in the Twin Towers reported by 100+ firefighters; the free fall collapse of the 47-story steel-frame WTC 7; pervasive high-tech nanothermite (an incendiary explosive) in the WTC dust; the horizontal ejections of huge sections of the… Continue reading
December 13, 2011
By politicizing who is and who is not a “terrorist” — pinning the label on American adversaries and sparing purported American friends — the U.S. government created confusion at FBI headquarters that contributed to the failure to stop the 9/11 attacks, reports ex-FBI agent Coleen Rowley.
By Coleen Rowley
Glenn Greenwald’s critique — regarding the recent U.S. indictment of 38-year-old Iraqi Faruq Khalil Muhammad Isa (currently in Canada) — is spot on about “terrorism” coming to simply mean opposing United States’ interests or resisting U.S. military invasions.
U.S. authorities have now dropped any requirement that the “terrorists” target or kill civilians as part of a political objective, the classic definition of terrorism. Isa stands accused of “providing material support to a terrorist conspiracy” because he allegedly backed a 2008 attack in Mosul, Iraq, killing five U.S. soldiers.
As Greenwald wrote, “In other words, if the U.S. invades and occupies your country, and you respond by fighting back against the invading army — the ultimate definition of a ‘military, not civilian target’ — then you are a . . . Terrorist.”
But the reverse of Greenwald’s example is also true, that those “terrorist” groups throughout the world who commit violent acts or kill civilians at U.S. instigation, encouragement or in line with U.S. interests are NOT considered “terrorists.”
For example, before 9/11, the Chechen “rebels” — who had orchestrated mass civilian hostage takings, suicide bombings and hijackings and who were accused of having planted bombs in… Continue reading
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
New Film, A NOBLE LIE: Oklahoma City 1995, asks questions about the Oklahoma City Bombing
Produced in Oklahoma, this newly-released documentary by FREE MIND FILMS and Director James Lane takes a fresh and in-depth look at the circumstances surrounding the 1995 Oklahoma City bombing.
But instead of accepting at face value the Federal Government’s deeply-flawed investigation, A NOBLE LIE features groundbreaking information and eyewitness testimonies that refute the official story.
The April 19, 1995 bombing that destroyed much of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building involved far more revealing evidence than the FBI maintains. A NOBLE LIE presents interviews with police officers, first responders, victims, journalists and investigators whose evidence demonstrates that not all the perpetrators were brought to justice.
Among the interview subjects are General Benton Partin, former head of weapons development for the Air Force, State Representative Charles Key, members of the Oklahoma Bombing Investigation Committee and Jesse Trentadue, whose brother Kenneth was tortured and murdered in Federal custody in the days following the bombing.
A NOBLE LIE is the only full-length documentary that addresses and answers many of the questions people have asked about the bombing. Details as to what really happened regarding this horrific event, taking the lives of 168 people, have been summarily covered up by the Federal Government. A NOBLE LIE re-examines the tragedy in a measured, informative and scholarly way, and in the process exposes the treachery that has gone unpunished.
By Ray McGovern
Exclusive: Though the 9/11 attacks occurred more than a decade ago, Congress continues to exploit them to pass evermore draconian laws on “terrorism,” with the Senate now empowering the military to arrest people on U.S. soil and hold them without trial, a serious threat to American liberties, says ex-CIA analyst Ray McGovern.
Ambiguous but alarming new wording, which is tucked into the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) and was just passed by the Senate, is reminiscent of the “extraordinary measures” introduced by the Nazis after they took power in 1933.
And the relative lack of reaction so far calls to mind the oddly calm indifference with which most Germans watched the erosion of the rights that had been guaranteed by their own Constitution. As one German writer observed, “With sheepish submissiveness we watched it unfold, as if from a box at the theater.”
The writer was Sebastian Haffner (real name Raimond Pretzel), a young German lawyer worried at what he saw in 1933 in Berlin, but helpless to stop it since, as he put it, the German people “collectively and limply collapsed, yielded and capitulated.”
“The result of this millionfold nervous breakdown,” wrote Haffner at the time, “is the unified nation, ready for anything, that is today the nightmare of the rest of the world.” Not a happy analogy.
The Senate bill, in effect, revokes an 1878 law known as the Posse Comitatus Act, which banned the Army from domestic law enforcement after the military had… Continue reading
By Spencer Ackerman
December 1, 2011
Here’s the best thing that can be said about the new detention powers
the Senate has tucked into next year’s defense bill: They don’t
force the military to detain American citizens indefinitely without
a trial. They just let the military do that. And even though the leaders
of the military and the spy community have said they want no such power, the
Senate is poised to pass its bill as early as tonight.
There are still changes swirling around the Senate, but this looks like the
basic shape of the 2012
National Defense Authorization Act. Someone the government says is “a
member of, or part of, al-Qaida or an associated force” can be held in
military custody “without trial until the end of the hostilities authorized
by the Authorization for Use of Military Force.” Those hostilities are
currently scheduled to end
the Wednesday after never. The move would shut down criminal trials for
But far more dramatically, the detention mandate to use indefinite military detention in terrorism cases isn’t limited to foreigners. It’s confusing, because two different sections of the bill seem to contradict each other, but in the judgment of the University of Texas’ Robert Chesney — a nonpartisan authority on military detention — “U.S. citizens are included in the grant of detention authority.”
Levin-McCain bill would create a presidential dictatorship. Where is the outrage?
by Justin Raimondo
Buried in the annual defense appropriations bill is a provision that would give the President the power to use the military to intern anyone — including American citizens — indefinitely, and hold them without charges or trial, anywhere in the world, including on American soil . The provision essentially repeals the longstanding Posse Comitatus Act , which prevents the military from engaging in law enforcement on US territory — the greatest fear of the Founders. Approved by a Senate subcommittee in secret hearings, the provisions open the road to a military dictatorship in this country — and for that we can thank Senators Carl Levin and John McCain , who introduced the measure. Both the FBI and the Pentagon came out against the Levin-McCain monstrosity, and Senator Mark Udall (D-Colorado) introduced an amendment striking the provision: the amendment was defeated in the Senate, 37-61 .
The mind reels. As the ACLU’s Chris Anders
puts it :
“I know it sounds incredible. New powers to use the military worldwide, even within the United States? Hasn’t anyone told the Senate that Osama bin Laden is dead, that the president is pulling all of the combat troops out of Iraq and trying to figure out how to get combat troops out of Afghanistan too? And American citizens and people picked up on American or Canadian or British streets being sent to military prisons indefinitely without even being charged… Continue reading
November 29, 2011
Secrecy News Blog
The Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board that was supposed to provide independent oversight of U.S. counterterrorism policies remains dormant and out of service because its members have still not been named and confirmed.
In a report that was newly updated this month, the Congressional Research Service traced the origins of the Board from a recommendation by the 9/11 Commission through its initial establishment as a White House agency to its reconstitution as an independent agency chartered by statute in 2007.
The Board was assigned two overriding missions: It was supposed to “analyze and review actions the executive branch takes to protect the Nation from terrorism, ensuring that the need for such actions is balanced with the need to protect privacy and civil liberties”; and to “ensure that liberty concerns are appropriately considered in the development and implementation of laws, regulations, and policies related to efforts to protect the Nation against terrorism.”
So had the Board been functional, it might have been a valuable participant in current deliberations over military detention authority, for example. It might also have conducted investigative oversight into any number of other counterterrorism policies, as mandated by law. But for all practical purposes, there is no Board.
Last January, President Obama named Elisebeth C. Cook and James X. Dempsey to serve on the Board. The Senate has not acted on their nomination. Even if they had been confirmed, however, they would not have constituted a quorum. Thus,… Continue reading
Red Dirt Report, editor
OKLAHOMA CITY — Ten years after 9/11 and 16 years after the Oklahoma City bombing, it appears the federal government continues to view some Americans who embrace their First Amendment rights — press and speech, primarily — as a danger to the State, and as a result they are listing certain investigative websites as extremist and a terroristic threat to the “homeland.”
One, labeled as “extremist” and therefore a threat to the U.S. Government, includes a well-known site, once operated by a truth-seeking Oklahoma state legislator, working to expose anomalies related to the 1995 Oklahoma City bombing — OKCbombing.net . A link to the document can be seen here .
This shocking designation is indeed troubling, particularly to the local documentary film production company Free Mind Films , which is also releasing an explosive documentary about the Oklahoma City bombing, A Noble Lie.
OKCbombing.net was formerly operated by State Rep. Charles Key (R-Oklahoma City), as a site to inform the public about reams of information discovered by the Oklahoma Bombing Investigation Committee, much of it originally ignored by the same federal agencies who now list the site as a threat to the homeland. As for Rep. Key, he concluded his role in the OBIC in approximately 2002 and Free Mind Films is now paying for access and domain rights to… Continue reading
November 28, 2011
Dr. Paul Rea
Dr. Lynn Margulis was always an iconoclast–and now, even after her tragic passing, she continues to teach us a great deal. While many know that Lynn Margulis was once married to astronomer Carl Sagan, in scientific circles she was best known for her theory of symbiogenesis. This theory proposes that inherited variation does not come from random mutations in genes but from long-lasting interaction between organisms.
Steve Goodwin, Dean of Natural Resources at the University of Massachusetts, understands that his colleague would “take the theory of evolutionary biology and see how far she could push it.” Given the prevailing Darwinian dogma, her challenge was very gutsy indeed. Strict Darwinists, Margulis pointed out boldly, “miss bacteria, protoctista, fungi, and plants. They take a small and interesting chapter in the book of evolution and extrapolate it into the entire encyclopedia of life.”
Predictably, Lynn Margulis affronted the dogmatists; some of them even called her a throwback to Jean-Baptiste Lamarck, who’d argued for a theory assuming the inheritance of acquired characteristics. Given the attitudes of conventional biologists, this was a damning dismissal. Thus when Margulis insisted on exploding the reigning paradigm, she was risking her professional reputation, even her career. Today it seems clear that it’s not either/or–that a fuller understanding of life needn’t discard all the Darwin/Wallace doctrine, but it does require looking at the full range of evidence.
David Ray Griffin has recently reminded us that for Margulis, the most difficult challenge was not… Continue reading
November 23, 2011
David Ray Griffin
The family of Lynn Margulis has announced that she died at home on Tuesday, November 22, at the age of 73. She had suffered a serious hemorrhagic stroke on Friday, November 18 – so serious that there was no chance of recovery.
Having authored dozens of books and scientific papers, Margulis was awarded the National Medal of Science in 1999.
In 2004, she began looking into the evidence against the official account of 9/11. She not only accepted it but also — always known for her courage – announced her views, writing in 2007:
“Whoever is responsible for bringing to grisly fruition this new false-flag operation, which has been used to justify the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq as well as unprecedented assaults on research, education, and civil liberties, must be perversely proud of their efficient handiwork. Certainly, 19 young Arab men and a man in a cave 7,000 miles away, no matter the level of their anger, could not have masterminded and carried out 9/11: the most effective television commercial in the history of Western civilization. I suggest that those of us aware and concerned demand that the glaringly erroneous official account of 9/11 be dismissed as a fraud and a new, thorough, and impartial investigation be undertaken.”
In early 2010, she wrote an article on WTC 7 entitled “Two Hit, Three Down — The Biggest Lie.” Asking: “Why did three World Trade Center buildings (#1,#2 and #7) collapse on 9/11, after… Continue reading
by Glenn Greenwald
November 23, 2011
A tribunal in Malaysia, spearheaded by that nation’s former Prime Minister, yesterday found George Bush and Tony Blair guilty of “crimes against peace” and other war crimes for their 2003 aggressive attack on Iraq, as well as fabricating pretexts used to justify the attack. The seven-member Kuala Lumpur War Crimes Tribunal — which featured an American law professor as one of its chief prosecutors — has no formal enforcement power, but was modeled after a 1967 tribunal in Sweden and Denmark that found the U.S. guilty of a war of aggression in Vietnam, and, even more so, after the U.S.-led Nuremberg Tribunal held after World War II. Just as the U.S. steadfastly ignored the 1967 tribunal on Vietnam, Bush and Blair both ignored the summons sent to them and thus were tried in absentia.
The tribunal ruled that Bush and Blair’s name should be entered in a register of war criminals, urged that they be recognized as such under the Rome Statute, and will also petition the International Criminal Court to proceed with binding charges. Such efforts are likely to be futile, but one Malaysian lawyer explained the motives of the tribunal to The Associated Press: “For these people who have been immune from prosecution, we want to put them on trial in this forum to prove that they committed war crimes.” In other words, because their own nations refuse to hold them accountable and can use their power to prevent international… Continue reading
Historical Judgment of Kuala Lumpur War Crimes Tribunal
by Cynthia McKinney
Kuala Lumpur War Crimes Tribunal
Bush, Blair Defense Relies On 9/11/01
That’s why we need an independent investigation of 9/11.
While the prosecution of President George W. Bush and Prime Minister Tony Blair for the crime of aggression, crimes against the peace, took two days to present because the docket was so full of important evidence, including their own books written after the Iraq War, the Defense (by way of Amicus Curiae) sought to conclude its proceedings by invoking the emotionalism of the tragedy that took place on 11 September 2001. Amid multiple rebukes by the Chief Justice of the Tribunal to avoid emotionalism, the Defense team could not help itself.
Lead Defense Counsel continued, “Had George W. Bush said ‘We know who you are, we know what you did, and we forgive you,’ the world could have been a much different place. But, instead, Afghanistan, Iraq, Guantánamo happened. We are fallible human beings. We make mistakes.” And the Defense stated that the defense of Bush and Blair defense is that the accused “are human.”
The Judges interjected at this point that perhaps the correct defense should have been “temporary insanity” or “provocation” since the prosecution had already stated that 9/11 was a pretext for the war that was desired by certain personalities as far back as 1998.
The Defense noted that what happened was human fallibility and in the end, the information that prompted the war… Continue reading