Sunday, April 22, 2012

The Surveillance Society Meets Robotic Warfare

"Drone Use Takes Off on Home Front" Wall Street Journal April 20, 2012 p. A3

[excerpted] "With little public attention dozens of universities and law-enforcement agencies ahve been given approval by federal aviation regulators to use unmanned aircraft known as drones, according to documents obtained via Freedom of Information Act requests by an advocacy Act..."

The article explains that more than 50 different organizations have had approval to use the drones. Many of the drones carry surveillance equipment including "video cameras, radar and wireless network 'sniffers.'"

The size of drones under development varies widely, including miniatures.

Majia here: I've seen pictures of some of the miniaturized drones designed to resemble insects.

The extensive uses of drones in war and, now, in domestic policing are extremely alarming and demonstrate that elite interests see all populations as potential threats.

See "America’s drone sickness" by Glen Greenwold at Salon

Majia here: Some people may think that domestic surveillance has no implications for law abiding citizens.

However, what people do not consider is how dissent itself has become regarded as "low-level" terrorism. See this:

ACLU Challenges Defense Department Personnel Policy To Regard Lawful Protests As “Low-Level Terrorism” (6/10/2009)
[excerpted] “Anti-terrorism training materials currently being used by the Department of Defense (DoD) teach its personnel that free expression in the form of public protests should be regarded as “low level terrorism.” ACLU attorneys are calling the approach “an egregious insult to constitutional values” and have sent a letter to the Department of Defense demanding that the offending materials be changed and that the DoD send corrective information to all DoD employees who received the erroneous training.
“DoD employees cannot fully protect our nation and its values unless they understand that a core American value is the constitutional right to criticize our government through protest activities,” said ACLU of Northern California attorney Ann Brick. “It is fundamentally wrong to equate activism with terrorism.”

Among the multiple-choice questions included in its Level 1 Antiterrorism Awareness training course, the DoD asks the following: “Which of the following is an example of low-level terrorist activity?”  To answer correctly, the examinee must select “protests.” 
The Level 1 Antiterrorism Awareness training course is an annual training requirement for all DoD personnel that is fulfilled through web-based instruction.
To read the ACLU’s letter to the DoD, go to:

Illustrating this transformation of legitimate domestic dissent into a "national security threat," is the recent crackdown on Occupy Wall Street demonstrators:

"New Occupy Crackdown Documents Show Federal Involvement" By Partnership for Civil Justice Fund. 21 April 12
[Excerpted] "Two days before the NYPD’s eviction of the Occupy Wall Street encampment from Zuccotti Park in lower Manhattan, Brookfield Properties' security was in direct communications and sharing information with the US Park Police in Washington DC, and communicating with other cities around the country, according to newly released internal documents from the National Park Service....

The documents were released late Friday to the Partnership for Civil Justice Fund (PCJF) in response to the civil rights legal group's FOIA demands to the NPS, FBI, CIA, DHS and other federal law enforcement agencies seeking information about the role of Federal agencies in the coordinated nationwide crackdown that led to the eviction of Occupy encampments in cities throughout the United States."

Majia here:

Transformation of American society into a “garrison state” subject to ceaseless, ubiquitous, internal policing as well as never ending warfare, serves the interests of elite individuals and organizations over the general interest of creating a more free, healthy, and economically sustainable society. (

1 comment:

  1. Majia, you keep nailing the big problems again and again. good work.


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