UPDATE: 3/14–FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
HISTORIC VICTORY FOR WHISTLEBLOWER PROTECTION
House Overwhelmingly Approves Whistleblower Enhancement Act
Senate Action Needed to Finish the Job
Washington, DC, March 14, 2007. Today, by a vote of 331 to 94, The House of Representatives passed the Whistleblower Protection Enhancement Act (H.R. 985). The Enhancment Act is the first major reform of federal whistleblower laws in 18 years, and cures numerous weaknesses in existing legislation. The Enhancement Act will:
* For the first time, provide most federal employees with a right to have their claims heard in federal court;
* Protect most federal employees who expose waste fraud and corruption through their chain of command;
* Provide a new remedy for federal contractors who expose fraud on the taxpayers
Stephen Kohn, the President of the National Whistleblower Center, issued the following statement regarding the passage of H.R. 985:
“This is a historic victory for oversight and accountability. For the first time in 18 years, Congress is getting serious about protecting Federal employee-whistleblowers. The House has taken the first step in passing…. It is now up to the Senate to get the job done. We fully expect that at the end of the day that Congress will pass, and the President will sign, effective whistleblower protections; we will accept nothing less.”
For more information about this legislation, please visit: www.whistleblowers.org
Press Release Information:
National Whistleblower Center, 3238 P Street, NW, Washington, D.C. 20007
FOR MORE INFORMATION CONTACT:
Stephen M. Kohn (202)342-6980
Aaron Parness (202) 342-1903… Continue reading
by Catherine Komp
Dec. 11 — A US Department of Homeland Security program that compiles data on millions of travelers and determines how likely they are to be terrorists may be operating illegally, according to privacy advocates and some members of Congress.
The Automated Targeting System (ATS) gathers travelers’ data from foreign governments, from numerous Customs and Border Protection sources, and from the Passenger Name Record, a controversial system used by the United States and Europe to gather travelers’ information from airlines and travel agencies.
ATS has long been used to track imported and exported cargo. But recent revelations by the Department show ATS is also being used to scrutinize airline passengers and cars entering or leaving the United States. The system draws on the collected data to assign a risk factor to each person or vehicle in order to help border patrol agents decide whether travelers “should receive additional screening because the traveler may pose a greater risk for violation of US law.”
It is unclear how long ATS has been used to screen humans. The DHS announced it had expanded ATS to include monitoring people in a November 2 notice in the Federal Register. However, the Department did not say when the expansion took place and some DHS officials have said the program has been in place for years.
Calling the program “equitable,” the agency said it “uses the same risk assessment process” for all individuals.
The DHS has announced it will keep the personal data gathered by ATS for up to 40 years to “cover the potentially active lifespan of individuals associated with terrorism or other criminal activities.…Continue reading
by Bob Fitrakis/Harvey Wasserman
On Election Day 2006, the American people will almost certainly vote to give the Democratic Party one or both houses of Congress.
We will vote to restore at least some of the checks and balances written into the Constitution of the United States. We will vote to end the reign of terror and error imposed on the nation and world since the stolen election of 2000. State by state, governorships and legislatures should return to the opposition party.
True to form, the corporate media is already starting to tell us that the polls are starting to slip back to the Republicans. This is the classic precursor to a coming fix.
In fact, all the instincts of credible students of American politics, indicate a massive shift away from the GOP. Anyone familiar with the history of the American electorate can be reasonably certain that the issues of war, deficits, economy, environment, scandal, sexual imposition and more will overwhelmingly favor a traditional rejection of the party in power, and then some.
But in 2006, the party in power has installed a nationwide system of election theft. And the outcome of tomorrow’s election may depend on the ability of the grassroots American citizenry to overcome this infernal machine.
The GOP engine of vote theft is built primarily on two pillars:
First is the massive disenfranchisement of mostly urban Democrats, including millions of people of color. Second is the simultaneous inflation of mostly rural and suburban Republican votes, including the mythological influx of “last-minute evangelicals” who may well exist primarily in the memory cards of rigged electronic machines.…Continue reading
By Bill Conroy
Posted on Sat Oct 28th, 2006
U.S. government lawyers have reached for the ultimate weapon in the House of Death mass murder cover-up: National Security.
Once that label is successfully applied to any aspect of the case, it is a sure bet the full truth of the U.S. government’s complicity in the murders will forever be suppressed.
And just what is being hidden under the trench coat of national security?
Between August 2003 and mid-January of 2004, a dozen people were kidnapped, tortured, butchered and then buried in the backyard of the House of Death — located at Calle Parsioneros 3633 in Juárez. The killers were Mexican police in league with a narco-trafficker named Heriberto Santillan Tabares, who was a top lieutenant in the Vicente Carrillo Fuentes organization.
The murders were carried out with the help of a U.S. government informant — a former Mexican cop who had attained high standing in Santillan’s organization. The informant, Guillermo Ramirez Peyro, was under the watch of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents and an Assistant U.S. Attorney in El Paso, Texas.
When the informant’s role came to light, after his activities nearly cost the lives of a DEA agent and his family, rather than investigate the callous activities of U.S. law enforcers who allowed the informant to commit murder under government cover, the leadership of the U.S. Department of Justice and Department of Homeland Security, which oversees ICE, chose to bury the facts along with the bodies.…Continue reading
“If you can’t march when they are torturing people, when can you march?”
That was the question posed by Samantha Hamlin, Columbia College student speaking for World Can’t Wait on Sept 26, right at Mayor Daley’s door in City Hall, as the Chicago Chapter of World Can’t Wait – Drive Out the Bush Regime brought together an impressive array of voices from across the political spectrum to speak out against the City of Chicago’s denial of our permit application to march on Oct 5th.
The press conference was lead off by Samantha Hamlin of the Chicago Chapter Steering Committee, followed by Judge R. Eugene Pincham; Nick Egnatz from Vietnam Veterans Against the War and Vets for Peace; Donnie Moore, University of Illinois student; Bob Bossie, 8th Day Center for Justice who has made numerous trips to Iraq; Ali Khan, Executive Director of the American Muslim Council; Andy Thayer, gay and anti-war activist; Rev. Greg Dell of Broadway United Methodist Church (id only); high school students from Wells HS; and Dennis Dixon from the Chicagoland Coalition for Civil Liberties and Rights.
Against the back drop of the WCW’s burning globe logo, these voices spoke truth. Ali Khan asked, “How could the government say they are fighting for democracy when everyday they are violating human rights, torturing people, denying them due process, they are crossing the line and violating the law.” Nick Egnatz from VVAW and Vets for Peace underscored this point by asking “when will the American people speak up?”… Continue reading
A Republican candidate for this area’s congressional seat said Wednesday that the U.S. government was complicit in the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.
by Albert McKeon
The Nashua Telegraph
24 August 2006
In an editorial board interview with The Telegraph on Wednesday, the candidate, Mary Maxwell, said the U.S. government had a role in killing nearly 3,000 people at the World Trade Center and Pentagon, so it could make Americans hate Arabs and allow the military to bomb Muslim nations such as Iraq.
Maxwell, 59, seeks the 2nd District congressional seat. The Concord resident opposes the incumbent, Charles Bass of Peterborough, and Berlin Mayor Bob Danderson in the Republican primary Sept. 12.
Maxwell would not specify if she holds the opinion that the government stood by while terrorists hijacked four domestic airliners and used them as weapons, or if it had a larger role by sanctioning and carrying out the attacks.
But she implicated the government by saying the Sept. 11 attacks were meant “to soften us up … to make us more willing to have more stringent laws here, which are totally against the Bill of Rights … to make us particularly focus on Arabs and Muslims … and those strange persons who spend all their time creating little bombs,” giving Americans a reason “to hate them and fear them and, therefore, bomb them in Iraq for other reasons.”
She said this strategy “would be normal” for governments, citing her belief that the British government – and not the Germany military – sank the Lusitania ocean liner in 1915.…Continue reading
Concerned citizens urged to respond
by 10:30 AM EST, Tues, June 27, 2006
Posted on behalf of Bill Doyle
of 9/11 Families for a Secure America and
9/11 Families United to Bankrupt Terrorism
On June 6, 2006, the House of Representatives passed Section 525 of H.R. 5441 in an overwhelmingly bipartisan vote. Section 525 includes language directing the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) to exercise more restraint and responsibility when classifying documents as “Sensitive Security Information” (SSI), which can then be protected from public disclosure. The Senate is now preparing to also vote on Section 525 and the TSA is strongly opposing this language as unwanted interference in its internal affairs.
Without the language, TSA will no doubt continue to classify many documents that are not rightfully entitled to official secrecy. Indeed, the TSA has been repeatedly warned by Congress, federal judges, and many others that it was abusing its classification authority and asked to cease and desist. This language in Section 525 is necessary to push the TSA to exercise its authority responsibly both to protect the nation’s transportation system and to allow Americans and the Congress to fully participate in that protection and ensure that the TSA is actually doing its job.
The TSA maintains that Section 525 will handicap national security and that it must be allowed to resolve its own self-admitted problems administratively, rather than letting Congress legislate solutions. However, the House carefully drafted the provision to minimize arbitrary burdens on the TSA, but still… Continue reading
Homeland Security, the “Keystone Stasi,” Now Tracks and Enforces Local Police Warrants
June 20, 2006: For many years, those working to create a total surveillance state have employed the “salami tactic” of taking away our freedoms one slice at a time. Laws that directly challenge constitutional rights, like the USA PATRIOT Act, are the spectacular exception. Agencies like FEMA quietly prepare plans for martial law, and have built a “Shadow Government” for military rule without need of a written order. The Bush administration for its part has constantly tested the waters, establishing new realities by fiat (as in its creation of the “enemy combatant” category to justify unlimited detention without charges), or floating test balloons like the “Total Information Awareness” program (which was withdrawn officially, even as the NSA’s telephone surveillance proceeded to implement its spirit behind the scenes).
Now we must all realize that at some point, the salami runs out. It no longer makes sense to say that our government is creating a police state. The fact is, that state has arrived, complete with One Big Database and the establishment of universal jurisdictions. In an editorial published this week in New York Newsday, Ray LeMoine tells a memorable story of how he was detained by Homeland Security for several hours because of outstanding local police warrants relating to his sale of unlicensed T-shirts (“Yankees Suck,” among others). We dare not dismiss this as a minor matter; it shows that there is nothing about us in electronic form that… Continue reading
By Eric Lipton
New York Times
June 18, 2006
The pervasive public fear ignited by 9/11 and relentlessly fanned by government leaders and the mainstream media has proved an unfailing political profit center for the administration and unimaginably enriched its military-industrial handlers. It is now also enwealthening scores of officials personally as “War on Terror”-profiteering accelerates the fusion of our private and public spheres.
WASHINGTON – Dozens of members of the Bush administration’s domestic security team, assembled after the 2001 terrorist attacks, are now collecting bigger paychecks in different roles: working on behalf of companies that sell domestic security products, many directly to the federal agencies the officials once helped run.
At least 90 officials at the Department of Homeland Security or the White House Office of Homeland Security – including the department’s former secretary, Tom Ridge; the former deputy secretary, Adm. James M. Loy; and the former under secretary, Asa Hutchinson – are executives, consultants or lobbyists for companies that collectively do billions of dollars’ worth of domestic security business.
More than two-thirds of the department’s most senior executives in its first years have moved through the revolving door. That pattern raises questions for some former officials.
“People have a right to make a living,” said Clark Kent Ervin, the former inspector general of the department, who now works at the Aspen Institute, a nonpartisan public policy research center. “But working virtually immediately for a company that is bidding for work in an area where you were… Continue reading
REASONS TO DOUBT THE OFFICIAL STORY OF SEPTEMBER 11th, 2001
… An outline in simple talking points …
We are continuing to compile the best documentation links for every single point on this page, and intend to post the updated version as soon as possible, and create teaching tools and more from the info. This is a significant and time-consuming process–if you have useful links, please send them to janice[at]911truth[dot]org. Thanks for your help!
If you use the search function with title key words, you will discover that 911Truth.org is home to articles backing virtually every point made below. Much of the basic research is available at the Complete 9/11 Timeline (hosted by cooperativeresearch.org), the 9/11 Reading Room (
911readingroom.org), and the NY Attorney General Spitzer petition and complaint (Justicefor911.org). For physical evidence discussion, see Point 7.
THE DAY ITSELF – EVIDENCE OF COMPLICITY
1) AWOL Chain of Command
a. It is well documented that the officials topping the chain of command for response to a domestic attack – George W. Bush, Donald Rumsfeld, Richard Myers, Montague Winfield, Ralph Eberhart – all found reason to do something else during the actual attacks, other than assuming their duties as decision-makers.
b. Who was actually in charge? Dick Cheney, Richard Clarke, Norman Mineta and the 9/11 Commission directly conflict in their accounts of top-level response to the unfolding events, such that several (or all) of them must be lying.… Continue reading
Despite Pentagon stonewalling and intimidation of whistleblowers, the story that a hardline Republican congressman says is “bigger than Watergate” refuses to go away.
Five former operatives of a US military intelligence project say they identified Mohamed Atta and three other men later alleged to have been the lead 9/11 hijackers as suspected al Qaeda terrorists working in the United States more than a year before September 11, 2001. The five whistleblowers say their superiors at the US Special Operations Command chose to suppress the information and keep it from law enforcement authorities, thus protecting Atta and Co. – at the very least in effect, if not as a matter of intent. They were forced to destroy their data on Atta; and their program, Able Danger, was killed by the Bush administration prior to September 11.
Years after the destruction of the World Trade Center, they told their story to the 9/11 Commission, only to be soundly ignored. When they finally came forward as whistleblowers last year, they were placed under gag orders by the Pentagon. The most prominent of them, Col. Anthony Shaffer, was investigated on charges that he stole pens and overcharged the Defense Department for $67 in phone calls. He claims the investigation of him to date has cost the taxpayers $2 million.
That, at any rate, is the Able Danger saga as we know it so far.
In the latest wrinkle, blog reporter Rory O’Connor (Mar 1, archived below) says a Pentagon inspector general’s investigation has identified… Continue reading
Posted By Jon Gold
In a recent interview on Lou Dobbs Tonight, Representative Curt Weldon made the following statement:
“We’ve received assurances that the hearings will go forward.
But the other thing that we have to look at, Lou, and you have had another guest on your show recently, why did the 9/11 Commission pick 1996 and not go back beyond that? There is some very interesting material that needs to be tied in. The ’93 attack on the Trade Center. The blind Sheik’s trial. None of that was looked at by the 9/11 Commission, and the American people need to ask the question why.
We will be asking that question during the Able Danger hearings.”
It will be interesting to see what information Rep. Weldon is referring to. Given the fact that there are many similarities between the ’93 bombing and 9/11, one can only hope he is referring to the truth in its entirety.
In October 1993, in an article entitled, “Tapes Depict Proposal to Thwart Bomb Used in Trade Center Blast” the New York Times reported that, “Law-enforcement officials were told that terrorists were building a bomb that was eventually used to blow up the World Trade Center, and they planned to thwart the plotters by secretly substituting harmless powder for the explosives, an informer said after the blast.”
“The informer was to have helped the plotters build the bomb and supply the fake powder, but the plan was called off by… Continue reading
The flooding and flattening of New Orleans and its exposure of this government”s abject failure in preparedness are a shock to the collective psyche of Americans. The human cost of this breakdown in response reveals the stark reality of life for millions in the richest country in the world. News coverage on the BBC truly showed how appalling the human conditions are in New Orleans, presenting us as an embarrassment to the world. Who would have ever thought that conditions normally seen in Sudan or Calcutta would surface here? Even the conservative news networks are exclaiming how inexplicable it is that so much that so much
misery could have been avoided through proper attention and planning. Although
the Army Corp of Engineers had begged for the funding to complete the levees
that would protect New Orleans in the event of a serious hurricane, it was
denied. Now we learn that even FEMA was subjected to budget cut backs under the
new Homeland Security regime. So where is the $40 billion that was appropriated
to secure our country in the event of a terrorist attack? How does that juicy
tax cut during time of war that Dick Cheney thought his wealthy friends were
entitled to look now?
Here we are fighting wars for oil in the mideast, proposing legislation that
would allow oil drilling in the delicate eco-system of Anwar, however,
protecting the infrastructure of the Gulf states where a high percentage of our
gasoline gets refined and processed somehow wasn’t… Continue reading
So this is how the US government does business!
Cash from the New York Federal Reserve is loaded on to C-130s and shipped to Bagdad — to the tune of $12 billion since the start of the US occupation of Iraq in March 2003.
The money originally came from Iraqi oil sales under Saddam and was held in trust under the rules of the UN oil sales program. Now it is handed out to Iraqi and US government contractors in the form of cash. Or “candy,” as Rep. Dennis Kucinich (D-OH) puts it.
In the end, $8.8 billion can no longer be accounted for. And the Pentagon acknowledges Halliburton “requested that information in the audits be withheld” from the Congressional subpoena, “including allegations that the firm had spent too much money in purchasing fuel.”
“By law, contractors can request that the government withhold any proprietary information from release.”
Interesting law, when corporations can decide information about their public contracts is proprietary.
But anyway, it’s all just “pocket change,” says an e-mail circulating at the Fed.
(See article: “Worries Raised on Handling of Funds in Iraq,” Los Angeles Times, June 22, 2005.)
And who can argue with that?
* * *
Recall Donald Rumsfeld chose the date of September 10, 2001 to announce that a Pentagon audit, ordered by Undersecretary Dov Zakheim and conducted by a Halliburton subsidiary, had discovered that the Defense Department can no longer account for $2.3 trillion in past transactions. (Note: You are not hallucinating: two… Continue reading
“A 4-hour panel discussion investigating theories behind 9-11 was held featuring four guests, all of whom expressed the belief that there are holes in the official story. Peter Lance and Mike Levine leaned towards the view that the government was negligent but didn’t plan the attacks, while the other two panelists David Ray Griffin and Alex Jones suspect an “inside job” to varying extents.” Listen to it here.
“Alex Jones, a documentary filmmaker and political researcher, pointed towards a “shadow” government above Pres. Bush as orchestrating the attacks. The hijackers, he suggested, were government trained operatives, who believed they were part of a drill on September 11th and not on a suicide mission. The planes themselves, he continued, were flown by remote control into the WTC towers. Jones created a special page to accompany the discussion, which includes a video clip from his latest work Martial Law 9-11.
“Investigative reporter Peter Lance countered that Jones’ theories were preposterous, and that by blaming a “shadow government” the effectiveness of al Qaeda is underestimated. Lance does believe that the U.S. government was negligent in its failure to detect the plot, and criminally culpable in its subsequent cover up of the facts. He sent us the following related links to audio and articles.
“Mirroring some of Lance’s assertions, radio host Mike Levine said there is enough evidence to put people in front of a grand jury, to face charges related to the deceptions and ineptitudes perpetrated by governmental agencies. Specifically he… Continue reading
by Ethan Blue
Issue #72, February 2005
Red states and blue states, the heartland versus the decadent city. Like many, I’m wary of these too-easy distinctions for the political effects they create, and the illusion of a homogeneous religious movement based on so-called “family values.” But, living in central Virginia for the past few years, if in the admittedly “blue” town of Charlottesville, I knew that the politics of the Christian right were very real, and very serious factors in people’s visions of what America should be. If I wasn’t sure what places were not being claimed as part of the far-right religious and colonial project, I could be sure of some places that were. So, along with two friends, I went to Lynchburg, Virginia, a buckle in the Bible-belt, where Jerry Falwell’s Liberty University is but one of many far-right religious institutions.
Among outreach programs sponsored by evangelical Christians in recent years, there has been a proliferation of entertaining religious performances. These performances provide enjoyment and titillation for church members, and a kind of outreach to non-members, or, as they refer to the non-born-again, non-Christians. While many of these performances are locally based and produced on a modest budget, there’s also a booming industry of evangelistic Christian corporations that capitalize on the growing sense of crisis in late modern American life. Among these corporations is “Judgement (sic) House,” (a trademarked name) developed by Clearwater, Florida-based New Creation Evangelism, Inc. Begun in the early 1980s, Judgement House’s stated goal is to appeal to teenagers, who according to their website, are “the targets in an intense spiritual battle where eternity is at stake.”
Judgement House?…Continue reading
By Daniel Hopsicker
Mad Cow Productions
Michael Chertoff, appointed by President Bush to head the Homeland Security Department, may have shielded from criminal prosecution a former client suspected by law enforcement of having funneled millions of dollars directly to Osama Bin Laden while in charge of the U.S. Government’s 9.11 investigation. Egyptian-born Dr. Magdy el-Amir, a prominent New Jersey neurologist, was at the center of terrorist intrigue in Jersey City.
WIRE TRANSFERS TO “UNKNOWN PARTIES”
Chertoff’s client “caused more than $5.7 million to be paid by wire transfers to unknown parties,” said the lawsuit filed shortly before the state took over his failing HMO. News accounts about el-Amir’s legal difficulties contain unanswered questions about undue political influence and its effect on national security.
For example, how did el-Amir, who only the month before had been granted a state license to operate an HMO, finagle a lucrative contract from the state of New Jersey in 1995? “Why was this doctor… Continue reading
An open letter to Congress from 25 national security experts, including former FBI whistle-blower, Sibel Edmonds
Date: September 13, 2004
To The Congress of The United States: The National Commission on Terrorist Attacks upon the United States ended its report stating that “We look forward to a national debate on the merits of what we have recommended, and we will participate vigorously in that debate.” In this spirit, we the undersigned wish to bring to the attention of the Congress and the people of the United States what we believe are serious shortcomings in the report and its recommendations. We thus call upon Congress to refrain from narrow political considerations and to apply brakes to the race to implement the commission recommendations. It is not too late for Congress to break with the practice of limiting testimony to that from politicians and top-layer career bureaucrats-many with personal reputations to defend and institutional equities to protect. Instead, use this unique opportunity to introduce salutary reform, an opportunity that must not be squandered by politically driven haste.
Omission is one of the major flaws in the Commission’s report. We are aware of significant issues and cases that were duly reported to the commission by those of us with direct knowledge, but somehow escaped attention. Serious problems and shortcomings within government agencies likewise were reported to the Commission but were not included in the report. The report simply does not get at key problems within the intelligence, aviation security, and law enforcement communities.… Continue reading