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  • Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board Holds First Public Meeting | Charity & Security Network
    recommendations urging the board to be open and transparent in its own activities and conduct thorough oversight on the government s widespread surveillance regime including the collection and storage of data related to activist groups First Amendment activities and the NSA s warrantless wiretapping program The Board has been dormant since it was originally created by Congress in 2004 Three years later the PCLOB became an independent entity within the Executive Branch but its five seats remained vacant President Obama did not submit nominations until 2010 and the Senate did not confirm them until August 2012 The board remains without a chair the Senate Judiciary Committee approved President Obama s nominee David Medine in May but the full Senate has not taken up the nomination The Implementing Recommendations of the 9 11 Commission Act of 2007 established the Board as an independent agency 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 Issues Humanitarian Access Material Support Financial Action Task Force FATF Financial Access Peacebuilding Countering Violent Extremism Click Here For More Issues Solutions Principles to

    Original URL path: http://www.charityandsecurity.org/news/PCLOB_Holds_First_Public_Meeting (2016-02-16)
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  • Bipartisan Senate Investigation: Fusion Centers Do Little to Counter Terror, Threaten Civil Liberties | Charity & Security Network
    188 were squelched by DHS internal reviewers who deemed them either useless or were in violation of rules meant to guard civil liberties the report said Examples cited in the Senate investigation included intelligence reports about an American Muslim community group s list of book recommendations and another was on parenting advice An intelligence report about a pamphlet produced by a biker group advising its members to be courteous to police officers during traffic stops was also flagged as possibly violating First Amendment rights Another cancelled intelligence report identified a U S citizen giving a lecture at a mosque The draft contained no derogatory information on the speaker or the mosque although it noted that the subject s visit could be to strengthen ties with the mosque as well as to conduct fundraising and recruiting for the sake of foreign terrorist organizations This assertion was not supported by evidence and was later removed by a DHS reviewer according to the Senate report The number of things that scare me about this report are almost too many to write into this form one DHS reviewer stated about the submission The investigation also found that DHS only required intelligence officials to take a five day course before they were charged with writing reports on sensitive domestic intelligence Additionally fusion center intelligence officers who routinely wrote useless reports or used information that endangered the privacy rights and civil liberties of U S citizens did not face reprimand or punishment according to the bipartisan report In one case Senate investigators found an intelligence officer who had had 26 of his 35 draft reports cancelled during a one year period because DHS reviewer officers explicitly noted civil liberties concerns when canceling at least 12 because they improperly reported on Constitutionally protected activity I cancelled a lot of them a Senior Reports Officer quoted in the Senate report said about that intelligence officer s work I would say the person must not have understood what was reportable and what wasn t You could see this was a pattern One report that got past DHR reviewers The Modern Militia Movement was issued by the Missouri Information Analysis Center in 2009 It provoked public outrage when it attempted to draw connections between constitutionally protected political activity and violent extremism The controversial DHS report said alleged that militia members most commonly associate with 3 rd party political groups including the Libertarian Party It stated that these militia members are usually supporters of Ron Paul Chuck Baldwin and Bob Barr Further it claimed militia members might display signs cartoons or bumper stickers featuring anti government rhetoric as well as anti immigration and anti abortion material Most surprising to some it identified as the most common symbol displayed by militia members the so called Gadsden Flag featuring a coiled snake and the words Don t Tread on Me Worse yet senior DHS officials were aware of the problems but did not always inform Congress of the issues nor ensure the problems

    Original URL path: http://www.charityandsecurity.org/news/Senate_Investigation_Fusion_Centers_Do_Not_Help_Counter_Terror_Threaten_Civil_Liberties (2016-02-16)
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  • Privacy Board Nominees Approved by Senate Judiciary Committee | Charity & Security Network
    said When we worked to create this board we did so to ensure that our fundamental rights and liberties would be preserved The Senate should move quickly to confirm the nominees to the board so that they can get to their important work The nominees are Jim Dempsey Center for Democracy and Technology Elisebeth Collins Cook a former Department of Justice lawyer Rachel Brand an attorney for the U S Chamber of Commerce Patricia Wald a former federal judge for the D C Circuit and David Medine an attorney at WilmerHale The Board was originally created by Congress in 2004 at the recommendation of the 9 11 Commission to be located within the Executive Office of the President In 2007 the PCLOB became an independent entity within the Executive Branch but the five seats on the Board have been vacant since 2007 Issues Humanitarian Access Material Support Financial Action Task Force FATF Financial Access Peacebuilding Countering Violent Extremism Click Here For More Issues Solutions Principles to Guide Solutions Models to Draw On Proposed Solutions News The latest headlines Resources Litigation Analysis Background Legislation Studies Reports Experts Blog About Us Staff Contact Search form Search Stay Up To Date Subscribe Publications

    Original URL path: http://www.charityandsecurity.org/news/Privacy_Board_Nominees_Approved_Senate_Judiciary_Committee (2016-02-16)
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  • FBI Training Document Equates Activism with Terrorism | Charity & Security Network
    agents to identify and investigate domestic terrorist groups such as animal rights activists and environmentalists engaging in protected First Amendment activities In presentations on Anarchist Extremism the FBI warns Anarchists are Criminals seeking an ideology to justify their activities Anarchists are Not dedicated to a particular cause Green anarchists believe individuals should get back to nature The document also warns that anarchists may have crossover ideologies including animal rights and environmental concerns and informs law enforcement officials that their meeting locations include college campuses underground clubs coffee houses internet cafes According to Will Potter a freelance journalist who has written on these issues the document offers insight into a disturbing pattern of FBI activity misrepresenting political activists as terrorists and manufacturing domestic terrorism threats where none exist akin to the notorious COINTELPRO program of J Edgar Hoover The ACLU s Mike German a former FBI agent identified three concerns with the training materials First for the FBI to produce training programs that portray groups as violent threats based on old and misleading evidence and false associations is improper and can only misdirect investigative resources Second the presentations focus on the unconventional ideologies of these modern groups tends to suggest a direct connection between belief and violence which will again lead to inappropriate investigations based on First Amendment protected activities rather than evidence of criminal conduct Finally even where these inappropriate investigations based on race and ideology fail to find evidence of violence under its new rules the FBI may continue to pursue these groups under what it calls a disruption strategy Issues Humanitarian Access Material Support Financial Action Task Force FATF Financial Access Peacebuilding Countering Violent Extremism Click Here For More Issues Solutions Principles to Guide Solutions Models to Draw On Proposed Solutions News The latest headlines Resources Litigation Analysis

    Original URL path: http://www.charityandsecurity.org/news/FBI_Training_Document_Equates_Activism_with_Terrorism (2016-02-16)
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  • Court: State Dept. Must Act on MEK’s Status as Foreign Terrorist Organization | Charity & Security Network
    we decline at this time to revoke the Foreign Terrorist Organization s designation the court ruled Instead we order the Secretary to either deny or grant PMOI s petition not later than four months from the date this opinion issues If Clinton fails to take action within that period the petition for a writ of mandamus setting aside the FTO foreign terrorist organization designation will be granted the court added The court s opinion reviewed the process available to a FTO that wants to challenge being placed on the FTO list It can petition the State Department and must provide evidence of changed circumstances that would warrant revocation of the designation to the FTO list Once such a petition is filed the Secretary of State has 180 days to act The listing must be revoked if 1 circumstances have changed in such a manner as to warrant revocation or 2 national security considerations warrant revocation 8 U S C 1189 c 3 When a petition is denied the FTO has thirty days to appeal to the Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia On July 16 2010 the Court granted PMOI MEK s petition for review because the State Department failed to accord the PMOI the due process protections outlined in our previous decisions These included the requirement that PMOI be notified of the unclassified material on which the Secretary proposes to rely and be given an opportunity to respond to that material before its re designation The Court s order instructs the Secretary of State to allow PMOI MEK to review an unclassified portion of the record on which State is based its 2009 decision to deny revocation and to indicate which items she believes are credible The Treasury Department has an ongoing investigation into payments made to

    Original URL path: http://www.charityandsecurity.org/news/State_MEK_Status_as_Foreign_Terrorist_Organization (2016-02-16)
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  • Former Fed Informant Now Suing FBI | Charity & Security Network
    New Jersey area appear to indicate that law enforcement is unfairly targeting people based on their religious beliefs Monteilh agrees saying The way the FBI conducts their operations It is all about entrapment I know the game I know the dynamics of it It s such a joke a real joke There is no real hunt It s fixed He claims he was paid about 11 000 and that his FBI contacts gave permission to have sex with one of the women his undercover operation was targeting They said if it would enhance the intelligence go ahead and have sex Monteilh stated So I did The Guardian referred to Monteilh s statement as an astonishing admission that goes to the heart of the intelligence surveillance of Muslim communities in America in the years after 9 11 The FBI did not respond to a request for comment Issues Humanitarian Access Material Support Financial Action Task Force FATF Financial Access Peacebuilding Countering Violent Extremism Click Here For More Issues Solutions Principles to Guide Solutions Models to Draw On Proposed Solutions News The latest headlines Resources Litigation Analysis Background Legislation Studies Reports Experts Blog About Us Staff Contact Search form Search Stay Up

    Original URL path: http://www.charityandsecurity.org/news/Former_Fed_Informant_Now_Suing_FBI (2016-02-16)
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  • WikiLeaks: Private Intelligence Company Paid to Monitor Activists’ Activities | Charity & Security Network
    political activists The emails date from between July 2004 and late December 2011 and reveal the inner workings of a company that provides proprietary intelligence services to government agencies including the U S Department of Homeland Security and the U S Defense Intelligence Agency and private corporations such as Lockheed Martin Northrop Grumman and Raytheon Examples of Statfor s targeting of activists exposed by Wikileaks include The company was paid to spy on activists like the Bhopal Medical Appeal a small UK based nonprofit protesting the gas leak from Union Carbide s Bhopal India pesticide plant from 1984 Long considered one of the world s worst industrial catastrophes it was responsible for killing over 15 000 people injuring 500 000 and creating a massive environmental disaster area that still affects the people who live in the region The Bhopal Medical Appeal had worked with the Yes Men activists who stage publicity stunts to highlight environmental and social abuses to stage a protest outside the Dow office in the UK According to one report Strafor monitored and cataloged the smallest details about the activists e g one person from Bhopal spoke at a university or went to buy a washing machine and sold the information to Dow Chemical Dow Chemical purchased Union Carbide in 1999 Hired by Coca Cola to monitor PETA activists in Canada Stratfor emails reveal concerns that protestors may take action at the 2010 Vancouver Winter Olympics To put some context onto this request our client is looking forward toward the 2010 Olympics in Vancouver and is somewhat concerned that PETA affiliates might be interested in carrying out direct action against Olympic sponsors and events during that time frame reads a June 2009 email released by Wikileaks Emails allegedly sent between Stratfor and Coca Cola employees appear to

    Original URL path: http://www.charityandsecurity.org/news/WikiLeaks_Stratfor_Paid_Monitor_Activists_Activities%20 (2016-02-16)
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  • Investigation of Anti-war Activists Remains Active | Charity & Security Network
    to appear before a grand jury in Chicago All have refused to testify That Barry Jonas is now involved in our case is an ominous development said Jess Sundin one of the anti war activists whose home was raided by the FBI Before joining U S District Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald in Chicago the lead official in this investigation Jonas had served as one of the prosecutors in the Holy Land Foundation HLF trial In 2004 HLF and its leaders were charged the providing material support to Hamas The indictment charged that the group funded local zakat committees charities in Gaza that were controlled by Hamas According to defense attorneys the prosecution s case was unfounded since it was based largely on the testimony of a secret witness and hearsay evidence The trial court s instructions to the jury did not require them to find that HLF and its leaders knew about Hamas control of these committees which are not on any public list of sanctioned entities None of us has been jailed for our refusal to testify at the grand jury and we believe that is thanks to the outpouring of support we have received from around the country Sundin added In early 2011 several members of Congress wrote to Attorney General Eric Holder about the raids and subpoenas In one letter Rep Jan Schakowsky D IL said the investigations into individuals and organizations engaged in peaceful anti war demonstrations are continuing a trend of intrusive government surveillance Other letters were written by Rep Danny Davis D IL Rep Keith Ellison D MN and Rep David Price D NC Issues Humanitarian Access Material Support Financial Action Task Force FATF Financial Access Peacebuilding Countering Violent Extremism Click Here For More Issues Solutions Principles to Guide Solutions Models to Draw On Proposed

    Original URL path: http://www.charityandsecurity.org/news/Investigation_Activists_Remains_Active (2016-02-16)
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