Thursday, September 9, 2010

Today In The World Of News And Views: Searching The Spin For The Truth.

Today In The World Of News And Views: Searching The Spin For The Truth.

The War Criminal Next Door - By Nick Donovan
Foreign Policy (blog)
Today, authorities estimate that there are at least 1000 
war crimes suspects in the United States, and the real number is probably much higher. ...

Capitalism, Anarchy & War | The League Of Ordinary Gentlemen
By ED Kain
If we want to save money on prisons we should look at ways to make fewer Americans criminals, rather than making up silly crimes so that corporations can profit off of them. And yes, I realize that anarchists and mutualists like IOZ and ...
The League of Ordinary Gentle

ICE numbers show that as of last Sunday, the agency “had caught and released 506,232 illegal aliens who are now fugitives.That is more than the population of Sacramento, which currently numbers 486,189,” Cybercast News Service’s Penny Starr recounts. Even law officers opposed to Arizona’s hotly debated SB 1070 oppose a proposed ICE policy change whereby federal agents would not be called unless a detained undocumented individual is a convicted felon, Joel Waldman reports for Tucson’s KGUN 9 News.

Feds: Citing state secrets privilege, a federal appeals court yesterday tossed a lawsuit against a Boeing subsidiary accused of transporting CIA terror detainees to secret foreign prisons where they allegedly were tortured, Threat Level’s David Kravets relates.TSA has come very close to meeting its goals to obligate $901 million in Recovery Act funds, while CBP apparently has not spent its stimulus funds as quickly, Homeland Security Today’s Mickey McCarter mentions. “The Pentagon is considering cuts in a war office thought to be untouchable: the organization that devises ways to foil the No. 1 killer of U.S. troops in Afghanistan,” meaning IEDs, The Washington Times’ Rowan Scarborough reports.

Semper Paratus: The Obama administration’s bid to cut five Coast Guard Maritime Safety and Security Teams “is absolutely unacceptable,” Rep. Frank A. LoBiondo, R-N.J., underlines in a 9/11 anniversary-tilted Shore News Today op-ed. “Thegap between homeland security and more traditional missions performed by the Coast Guard increased from 10 percent to 12 percent in 2009 over the previous year,” The Navy Times’ Christopher P. Cavas sees an IG review assessing. In a joint exercise yesterday, Coast Guard and Navy vessels responded to a simulated “security breach” at the entrance to the Kings Bay Naval Submarine Base, Columbus (Ga.)’s WTVM 9 News relays.

State and local: Standing with the Dallas County Sheriff, Dem challenger Bill White accused Texas Gov. Rick Perry of failing to do enough to secure the state’s border with Mexico, the Morning News notes. Louisville officials, meantime, showed off at the Waterfront Park harbor their new $400,000 fire and rescue vessel, 75 percent paid for by DHS grants, the Courier-Journal recounts — while The Pasadena Star-News sees that city’s P.D. rolling out a $280,000 DHS-funded BearCat armored car that “looks more like a tank with truck wheels.” Rockton (Ill.)’s police chief has completed homeland security training at the Center for Domestic Preparedness in Alabama, WIFR 23 News notes. DHS has designated next year’s Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation meeting slated for Hawaii a National Special Security EventPacific Business News notes.

Follow the money: An Obama administration workshop allegedly helped terror-linked leaders of controversial Muslim groups acquire “direct access” to taxpayer funding for their activities, Human Events alleges. The E.U.’s Europol agency says “substantial” amounts of money “innocently donated to apparently good causes is ending up in the pockets of terrorists,” The Daily Express reports. A Somali-born Norwegian citizen pleaded not guilty to sending more than $30,000 to Somalia’s Al Shabaab in the first trial under Norway’s 2002 terror financing law, The Canadian Press recounts — while Deutsche Welle hears German authorities warning of an increase in money laundering to fuel crime and terrorism. “If we are to shut down the ‘New Economy of Terror’ . . . political will and leadership is a must, as is the requirement of resisting the ever-present march toward political correctness,” an essay in Australian Conservative contends. “We need to revisit bin Laden’s theory that Sept. 11 would inflict a mortal blow on the U.S. economy,” a Sydney Morning Herald op-ed also exhorts from Down Under.

Bugs ‘n bombs: “Fears about bioterrorism have prompted new efforts by corporations and governments worldwide to build defenses against germ attacks. But some of these arrangements themselves raise security issues,” Pro Publica leads. “As the nation focuses on dramatic, novel or ‘niche’ threats . . . a big threat to homeland security occurs more than 80 times a day in our own neighborhoods: arson,” an Emergency Management essay maintains. An anti-radiation drug developed by asmall company in Buffalo “is beginning to draw serious attention in medical — and military — circles,” WNED-AM 970 News spotlights. The state Department of Health seeks some 500 volunteers to participate in an emergency medication distribution program on Kauai, Hawaii News Now notes. “The threat of terrorists getting access to using chemical, biological, nuclear weapons is real and immediate,” Xinhua quotes a U.N. nonproliferation official.

Close air support: A hoax threat scrawled on a restroom mirror aboard a Thai Airways flight out of Bangkok prompted an LAX security to-do Tuesday night, the Los Angeles Times relates. A call from Homeland Security officials dispatched police in two Georgia counties to local airports to await a plane that had disappeared from radar, The Rome News-Tribune notes — while The Northwest Florida News sees a Nashville man arrested going through airport security with a loaded .38 Special in a backpack. Despite beefed up security following a thievery binge last year, baggage theft is again an issue at Phoenix’s Sky relates. In a “counter-aviation terror collaborative effort,” British experts are in Hyderabadtraining airport screeners working for India’s Central Industrial Security Force, The Times of India tells — while Yedioth Ahronoth sees Hasidic pilgrims to the Ukrainian grave of Rabbi Nachman of Breslov boarding a flight in Tel Aviv with facescompletely veiled “to avoid sin of gazing upon women.”

Cyberia: The DHS agency in charge of protecting other agencies from computer intruders was found in a new IG audit to be riddled with hundreds of high-risk security holes on its own systems, Threat Level relates. “An enormous amount of foundational work remains, but the U.S. government has begun putting in place various initiatives to defend the United States in the digital age,” says a Foreign Affairs essay on “the Pentagon’s cyberstrategy” — while Ubergizmo hears the NSA’s chief saying that government entities enforcing cybersecurity will need to respect the civil rights of citizens, and Lockheed Martin’s CEO tells Reuters the defense giant is especially interested in using spare M&A change to snap up likely cybersecurity firms. The U.S. military’s newAfghan detention facility stores biometric info on its inmate population, “which, in a country with a shaky commitment to the rule of law, could become weapons,” Innovya notes.

Terror tech: While debate continues over whole-body imagers at airports, “manufacturers are opening deeper opportunities for themselves elsewhere that could make the controversial machines an even bigger part of everyday life,” Elevated Riskrelates. An autonomous robotic hand attached to a small helicopter “could be used to pick up bombs or packages,” Technology Review relates. Ohio researchers propose scanning the skeletal structures of people transiting public places vulnerable to terrorist attack, quickly matching with potential suspects using a database of previously scanned skeletons, Homeland Security Newswire notes. An infrared security camera developed by a U.K. firm, similarly, can ID faces in seconds — even when they are moving, at a wide angle or in poor light — by comparing captured images to a database, The Engineer informs. Early experiments suggest turning prisons inside out, with convicts released into society under constant electronic surveillance “might cut crime, reduce costs, and even prove more just,” The Atlantic assesses.

Courts and rights: A longtime friend of an Oregon man accused of using an Islamic charity to smuggle money to Muslim fighters in Chechnya testified that the defendant wanted to promote peace and help orphans, KLCC 89.7 FM News notes. A federal judge agrees with the government that it can indefinitely hold at Guantanamo an Afghan man it says belonged to an anti-American cell near Kandahar, The Miami Herald mentions. A Somali man who yesterday pleaded guilty in a Washington court to acts of armed piracy off the Horn of Africa faces up to 25 years in prison, Agence France-Presse reports.

The foreign bar: Pakistan will soon bring terror charges against three men alleged to have helped the failed Times Square bomber meet up with militant leaders, The Associated Press reports. Canadian prosecutors want an eight-year sentence for aman convicted of fundraising for the Toronto 18 terrorist group, The National Post relates. A Colombian judge has ordered an international warrant against a Colombian journalist who is suspected of having ties to the terror-listed FARC guerrilla group,Colombia Reports reports — while Kenya’s Daily Nation sees the Commissioner of Police being ordered to appear in a Nairobi court to explain the circumstances under which arrests over the Kampala bombings were made.

Standing firm: “Local man Scott Gentries told reporters that his deliberately limited grasp of Islamic history and culture was still more than sufficient to shape his views of the entire Muslim world, The Onion reports. “Gentries, 48, said he had absolutely no interest in exposing himself to further knowledge of Islamic civilization or putting his sweeping opinions into a broader context of any kind, and confirmed he was ‘perfectly happy’ to make a handful of emotionally charged words the basis of his mistrust toward all members of the world’s second-largest religion. ‘I learned all that really matters about the Muslim faith on 9/11,’ Gentries said in reference to the terrorist attacks on the United States undertaken by 19 of Islam’s approximately 1.6 billion practitioners. ‘What more do I need to know to stigmatize Muslims everywhere as inherently violent radicals?’ Over the past decade, Gentries said he has taken pains to avoid personal interactions or media that might have the potential to compromise his point of view. He told reporters that the closest he had come to confronting a contrary standpoint was tuning in to the first few seconds of an interview with a moderate Muslim cleric before hastily turning off the television.”


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