December 28, 2005
I recall laughing sardonically back in September 2003 when our
bought and paid for Congress expected us to believe it had eliminated
the so-called Total Information Awareness program run by Iran-Contra
convicted criminal John Poindexter, then-director of DARPA’s
Information Awareness Office (see this useless bill).
I said at the time this was nothing more than smoke and mirrors because
spooks are rarely if ever dissuaded from their criminal efforts, least
of all at the behest of Congress, populated as it is by scoundrels who
are supposedly the representatives of the people.
As noted by the Electronic Privacy Information Center,
this all but meaningless decree issued by Congress did not "necessarily
signal the end of other government data-mining initiatives that are
similar to TIA. Projects such as the Novel Intelligence from Massive
Data within the Intelligence Community Advanced Research and
Development Activity (ARDA) will apparently move forward. The FBI and
the Transportation Security Administration are also working on
data-mining projects that will fuse commercial databases, public
databases, and intelligence data and had meetings with TIA developers."
move forward in a big way, as we now understand (and considering the
sordid history of the Pentagon, CIA, FBI, NSA, and sundry other spook
agencies, we should have understood well before the current scandal).
"Besides the NSA, the Pentagon, Federal Bureau of Investigation, the
Department of Homeland Security and dozens of private contractors are
spying on millions of Americans 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365
days a year," writes Doug Thompson
for Capitol Hill Blue. "It’s a total effort to build dossiers on as
many Americans as possible," a former NSA agent "who quit in disgust
over use of the agency to spy on Americans" told Thompson. "We’re no
longer in the business of tracking our enemies. We’re spying on
everyday Americans." In short, a massive and all-encompassing spook
apparatus—the distinction of all totalitarian states (think East
Germany’s Ministerium für Staatssicherheit, or Stasi)—has taken root
here in America, a country that once prided itself on a Constitution
and a Bill of Rights, now doormats for the Straussian neocons and their
slimebucket neolib confederates to wipe their blood-stained shoes on as
they enter the "the People’s House," now little more than a brothel and
a rogue’s gallery.
As for Poindexter’s TIA:
supposedly killed by Congress more than 18 months ago, the Defense
Advance Project Research Agency’s Terrorist Information Awareness (TIA)
system, formerly called the "Total Information Awareness" program, is
alive and well and collecting data in real time on Americans at a
computer center located at 3801 Fairfax Drive in Arlington, Virginia.
system, set up by retired admiral John Poindexter, once convicted of
lying to Congress in the Iran-Contra scandal, compiles financial,
travel and other data on the day-to-day activities of Americans and
then runs that data through a computer model to look for patterns that
the agency deems "terrorist-related behavior."
admits the program was quietly moved into the Pentagon’s "black bag"
program where it does escapes Congressional oversight.
course, the Pentagon and the spook monolith are not interested in the
"day-to-day activities" of the vast majority of most Americans, most
who have "nothing to hide" (as more than a few witless Americans have
told me over the years; for background on this attitude, see Americans split on feds listening in),
but rather political enemies of the neocons and their fellow travelers
ensconced in the White House and the Department of Forever War. "The
Pentagon has built a massive database of Americans it considers
threats, including members of antiwar groups, peace activists and
writers opposed to the war in Iraq. Pentagon officials now claim they
are 'reviewing the files’ to see if the information is necessary to the
'war on terrorism,’" Thompson writes. In other words, the war on our
civil liberties—especially the civil liberties of those of us
considered a "threat" to the Bushcons and Company (and in Bushzarro
world, it is a threat to practice the First Amendment and hold up an
anti-Bush sign in public).
"Given the power granted to the
office of the presidency and the unaccountability of the intelligence
agencies, widespread illegal domestic operations are certain," warns Verne Lyon, a former CIA undercover operative. In fact, the snoops were unleashed a long time ago, explains Richard Polenberg,
professor of history at Cornell University. "The era of the First World
War witnessed several fundamental changes in the role of the American
federal government. Not the least of these was the use of military
services as a counter-force against disaffected elements of the
civilian population—particularly against radical labor organizers and
leftist intellectuals. This development had long-lasting consequences,
beginning a tradition that continued, with few lapses, through the
Second World War and beyond."
"The public exposure of
COINTELPRO and other government abuses resulted in a flurry of apparent
reform in the 1970s, but domestic covert action did not end. It has
persisted, and seems a permanent feature of our government. Much of
today’s domestic covert action can also be kept concealed because of
government secrecy that has been restored," note Mike Cassidy and Will Miller.
of what was done outside the law under COINTELPRO was later legalized
by Executive Order 12333 (12/4/81). There is every reason to believe
that even what was not legalized is still going on as well. Lest we
forget, Lt. Col. Oliver North funded and orchestrated from the White
House basement break-ins and other "dirty tricks" to defeat
congressional critics of U.S. policy in Central America and to
neutralize grassroots protest. Special Prosecutor Walsh found evidence
that North and Richard Secord (architect of the 1960s covert actions in
Cambodia) used Iran-Contra funds to harass the Christic Institute, a
church-funded public interest group specializing in exposing government
North also helped other administration officials
at the Federal Emergency Management Administration develop contingency
plans for suspending the Constitution, establishing martial law, and
holding political dissidents in concentration camps in the event of
"national opposition against a U.S. military invasion abroad." There
were reports of similar activities and preparations in response to the
opposition to the Gulf War in 1991. Even today, there is pending
litigation against the FBI involving alleged misconduct in connection
with the near-fatal bombing of Judi Bari.
rather, since Bush is an enfeebled cardboard cut-out of a president,
the Straussian-Machiavellian neocons—are simply using well-established
tools in an all-out effort to destroy what remains of the Constitution,
a prerequisite for the sort of total war they envision first against
Islam (in the name of the Jabotinsky Zionists in Israel) and then
against all comers who would question or challenge U.S.-corporate
hegemony. It is certainly no mistake the shakers and movers of the
Bushcon administration are former Iran-Contra alumni, well-versed in
the methods and means of totalitarianism.