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No. 1604

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12 – 02 – 2012



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La principal asociación de la policía griega pide el arresto de la Troika

Sábado, 11 de Febrero de 2012 15:24

Autor: Tercera Información

Comunicado de POASY a la CE, el BCE y el FMI. "Les advertimos que nos negaremos a ir contra nuestros padres, hermanos, hijos, o los ciudadanos de este país, que protestan y exigen cambios de ruta".

Comunicado de POASY

Para los representantes: Presidente de la Comisión Servaz Nteroouz del Fondo Monetario Internacional, el Sr. Thomsen Pooul Banco Central Europeo, el Sr. Klaouz Mazouch


Señores,

El Consejo General Ampliado de la Federación con representantes de todas las organizaciones de oficiales de policía del país en el trabajo de ayer y de hoy 08/02/2012 09/02/2012 decidió por unanimidad ponerse en contacto con ustedes y determinar los siguientes puntos:


Durante dos años, la Federación Nacional de Oficiales de la Policía, ha advertido que la política de imponer y exigir que se aplica “a punta de pistola,” está destruyendo la cohesión social y matando cualquier esperanza en la recuperación de la economía griega.



Esto representa nuestra protesta en la sede de la Unión Europea y las Embajadas de Alemania y Francia, expresamos nuestra oposición vertical a las políticas que afectan el orgullo y las sensibilidades democráticas de nuestro pueblo.

Les advertimos que nos negaremos a ir contra nuestros padres, hermanos, hijos, o los ciudadanos de este país, que protestan y exigen cambios de ruta.

Todo lo que pedimos son políticas programáticas que salvaguarden los intereses de los trabajadores y de todos los que ahora viven bajo la línea de pobreza.

Los intereses de los acreedores de préstamos usureros y los capitalistas que codician la riqueza nacional, no pueden en arreglo a la Ley poner por encima de las necesidades básicas de la gente corriente sus propios intereses. Por otra parte, la prioridad de la supervivencia de los ciudadanos de una nación, tiene legitimidad internacional y es una prioridad no sólo en la política interna sino de la comunidad internacional. Por otra parte, no somos ni nosotros ni la mayoría de la gente común los que causaron la crisis.

Debido a que, sin embargo, nos encontramos una vez más con que quieren continuar con las mismas políticas destructivas para todos nosotros, nos gustaría afirmar categóricamente que bajo ninguna circunstancia aceptaremos matar a nuestros hermanos.

Quedan avisados de que, como representantes legítimos de la policía griega, requeriremos que nos sean emitidas órdenes de arresto hacia ustedes por una gran cantidad de delitos contemplados por la legislación y de acuerdo al Código Penal griego, como la promoción encubierta de la eliminación o reducción de nuestro sistema de gobierno democrático y la soberanía nacional, la interferencia de otros bienes jurídicos esenciales del pueblo griego, etc.

http://www.matrizur.org/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=18416:la-principal-asociacion-de-la-policia-griega-pide-el-arresto-de-la-troika&catid=41:mundo&Itemid=60


Avión no tripulado británico habría sido “amerizado” por hackeo cerca de Malvinas

Sábado, 11 de Febrero de 2012 02:23

Avión Reapers no tripulado puede alcanzar el continente


Autor: Seewar

Un avión británico no tripulado amerizó en aguas pertenecientes a la zona de exclusión marítima según lo informado por el periódico isleño "The Kelper's News" de edición impresa en la isla.



La información divulgada recién hoy, habría ocurrido el mes pasado cuando un avión dron fue descendido en el mar por tecnología de procedencia desconocida (no británica) en el espacio aéreo de las islas Falklands (Malvinas).



Especialistas aeronáuticos argentinos no descartan que aviones no tripulados hagan reconocimiento aéreo sobre el Mar Argentino e inclusive lleguen a las costas del país austral.

 

El denominado vehículo aéreo no tripulado de combate (Unmanned Combat Aerial Vehicle, UCAV) –que trabaja cooperativamente con sistemas C4 I (comando, control, comunicaciones, computación e inteligencia) posee sistemas comunicacionales con una baja probabilidad de detección aunque fue amerizado al quedar fuera de control británico y desapareció luego de hundirse en el mar y no haber sido recuperado debido el fuerte oleaje y las condiciones climáticas imperantes en la zona, de acuerdo al periódico isleño.



El avión, según lo mencionado por el periódico sería un Reapers -también utilizado en operaciones sobre Afganistán- que fue lanzado desde la base Mont Pleasent (Monte Agradable-fotografía), base militar de la Royal Air Force británica en las Islas Malvinas.

EL origen de la tecnología utilizada para la intercepción y descenso del aparato no ha podido ser determinada aún por los expertos británicos militares informáticos, según el diario isleño. Informaciones provenientes de agencias militares británicas aseguran no descartar que submarinos chinos o rusos presentes en la zona sean los responsables del "descenso forzado" de su avión Reapers  en aguas de las Falklands.



El amerizaje (aterrizaje acuático) en aguas del Atlantico Sur sería el segundo caso en pocos meses de una intercepción por hackeo del sistema de comando de un dron. El hackeo de mayor resonancia ocurrió cuando un avión 170 Sentinel fabricado por la empresa Locked Martin para la Fuerza Aérea de Estados Unidos fuera interceptado por fuerzas iraníes provocando la caída del aparato a la altura de la ciudad de Kashmar (noroeste iraní), tras introducirse en su sistema electrónico.



El gobierno argentino ha denunciado ayer ante el Consejo de Seguridad de las Naciones Unidas y la Asamblea General la militarización de las Islas tras el envío de un submarino nuclear británico y uno de sus buques de guerra más modernos, el destructor “HMS Dauntless”, Tipo 45. Estos barcos llevan, misiles antiaéreos de alta tecnología Sea Viper y helicópteros  Chinook.

 

Tomado de The Kelper's News

http://www.matrizur.org/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=18410:dron-britanico-fue-amerizado-por-tecnologia-desconocida-en-zona-aerea-de-malvinas&catid=44:imperio&Itemid=62


Nueva ley permitirá que 30.000 aviones no tripulados llenen los cielos de Estados Unidos para el 2020

Sábado, 11 de Febrero de 2012 02:03

Autor: PressTV

El Congreso de Estados Unidos aprobó una ley que permite al gobierno el despliegue de hasta 30.000 aviones no tripulados espías en el espacio aéreo del país para el 2020, planteando serias preocupaciones acerca de la violación de la privacidad.

La ley, que facilita al gobierno el uso de aviones no tripulados espías en el espacio aéreo de EE. UU., requiere que la Administración Federal de Aviación (FAA por sus siglas en inglés) apure un plan para obtener tantos aviones no tripulados como sea posible en nueve meses.

 

La Ley de Reautorización de la Administración Federal de Aviación, la cual se espera que sea firmada por el presidente Barack Obama, también ordena a la FAA desarrollar regulaciones para el análisis y concesión de licencias de aviones no tripulados comerciales para el 2015, informó The Washington Times.

Defensores de la privacidad han protestado que la medida dará lugar a la amplia utilización de aviones no tripulados para la vigilancia electrónica por los organismos policiales en todo el país y eventualmente por compañías privadas también.

Hay serias dudas políticas en el horizonte sobre la privacidad y la vigilancia, tanto en las agencias gubernamentales como de entidades comerciales”, dijo Steven Aftergood, quien dirige el Proyecto sobre Secretismo Gubernamental de la Federación de Científicos Estadounidenses.

La Fundación de Frontera Electrónica también está “preocupada acerca de las implicaciones de la vigilancia por parte de las agencias del gobierno”, afirmó la abogada Jennifer Lynch.

La disposición en la legislación es el fruto de “un gran impulso por los legisladores y el sector de defensa para ampliar el uso de aviones no tripulados” en el espacio aéreo estadounidense, añadió.

Según algunos estimados, el mercado comercial de aviones no tripulados en Estados Unidospodría valer cientos de millones de dólares una vez que la FAA autorize su uso.

Estados Unidos ha estado utilizando aviones no tripulados para sus operaciones de espionaje y misiones de asesinato a nivel mundial y los ataques se han intensificado desde que Obama asumió el cargo hace tres años.

Traducción Ivana Cardinale Para Patria Grande

http://www.matrizur.org/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=18408:nueva-ley-permitira-que-30000-aviones-no-tripulados-llenen-los-cielos-de-estados-unidos-para-el-2020&catid=44:imperio&Itemid=62


Argentina denunció militarización del Atlántico Sur por el Reino Unido

11 febrero 2012

Durante su intervención en la ONU manifestó su preocupación por el despliegue militar británico, que incluye un submarino nuclear con capacidad para transportar armamento nuclear

El Consejo de Seguridad de las Naciones Unidas le dio ingreso a la protesta que ayer presentó el gobierno argentino por lo que considera es un proceso de militarización del Reino Unido del Atlántico Sur.

En el escrito que el canciller Héctor Timerman dejó en manos de los titulares del Comité de Seguridad, de la Secretaría General y de la Asamblea General de la ONU se detalla que el despliegue militar británico incluye al submarino nuclear Vanguard; con capacidad para transportar armamento nuclear; aviones Typhoon II y un Destructor tipo 45.

Todo ello armamento de lo más moderno y sofisticado que existe, que ningún gobierno de la región posee. “Desde las Malvinas pueden atacar el sur de Brasil”, ejemplificó. Lejos de negarlo, el embajador británico en la ONU, Lyall Grant, sostuvo que “es conocido que hay submarinos en patrulla en todo el mundo” de su país y amenazó con una “defensa robusta” en caso de que Argentina intente utilizar el aniversario del 2 de abril “para una aventura militar”.

En la delegación argentina anoche consideraban ya “un triunfo” que el Consejo de Seguridad le hubiera dado inmediato ingreso al escrito y lo distribuyera entre los quince países miembro, con lo que quedaba en condiciones de ser discutido en la próxima reunión. “Es muy importante, esto ya está asentado en un documento oficial de las Naciones Unidas”, explicaban.

En la presentación se detalla que “el gobierno argentino, reiteradamente, ha destacado que esa creciente militarización británica es contraria a la búsqueda de una solución pacífica a la disputa de soberanía, constituyendo una afrenta para la región toda y creando una tensión innecesaria en el Atlántico Sur”.

Timerman mantuvo varias reuniones en la sede de las Naciones Unidas, en Nueva York. Por la mañana lo atendió el presidente del Consejo de Seguridad, Kodjo Menan, de Togo, quien se comprometió a conversar directamente de la cuestión con el representante británico en el órgano. Le dijo que una vez que tuviera una respuesta se comunicaría con Timerman para transmitírsela.

En verdad, el Reino Unido está en condiciones de bloquear la discusión sobre la protesta. Por eso Timerman anoche mantuvo un encuentro extra con los representantes de Colombia y de Guatemala en el Consejo, los dos países latinoamericanos con bancas temporarias. Acordaron que si los británicos bloquean el tratamiento, ellos pedirán la palabra en la sesión para solicitarle a Menan que informe sobre el contenido del encuentro que mantuvo con el canciller argentino. De esa manera, entonces, la cuestión quedará abierta a discusión.

El Reino Unido es uno de los cinco países con poder de veto en el Consejo, así que no hay posibilidades de que se apruebe ninguna resolución en su contra. La estrategia del gobierno argentino apunta a incomodar a la administración de David Cameron abriendo la discusión sobre el tema Malvinas en todos los foros internacionales en los que participe.

Por la tarde, Timerman le entregó el documento también al presidente de la Asamblea General, el qatarí Nassir Abdulaziz Al Na-sser, y cerró con el secretario general, el coreano Ban Ki-moon, que del tema sabe bastante porque Argentina le pidió tiempo atrás que interceda ante el gobierno británico para que acepte sentarse a dialogar, como reclama la ONU desde hace años.

Todos sus intentos fueron en vano. Con todo, Ban Ki-moon le ofreció ayer nuevamente a Timerman oficiar como mediador en el conflicto. El secretario general de las Naciones Unidas se manifestó preocupado y dijo que esperaba que ambos países “eviten una escalada y resuelvan sus diferencias de manera pacífica y a través del diálogo”. La declaración le sirvió luego a Timerman para sostener que todos aceptan dialogar menos el Reino Unido.

DETALLES

El canciller dio una conferencia de prensa de la que participaron en señal de apoyo los representantes en la ONU de Brasil, Chile, Perú, Ecuador, El Salvador, Costa Rica y Guatemala. Allí aportó detalles de la denuncia sobre el despliegue militar británico, que incluye como máximo exponente un submarino nuclear con capacidad para transportar armamento nuclear.

La introducción de armas nucleares es una contradicción al Tratado de Tlatelolco, del cual Gran Bretaña es parte”, subrayó. Ese tratado estableció que Latinoamérica debe ser una región libre de armamento nuclear.

Timerman argumentó que el gobierno británico utiliza la defensa de la autodeterminación de los 2500 kelpers para establecer en el Atlántico Sur una poderosa base militar que le sirve para proteger sus intereses estratégicos que se proyectan a la Antártida y a los océanos Pacífico e Indico. Buena parte de la presentación estuvo dedicada a demostrar lo desproporcionado del despliegue militar británico.

Por ejemplo, los aviones Typhoon de quinta generación, que son los que los británicos utilizan en los conflictos en Libia, Afganistán e Irak, con posibilidades ofensivas de llegar hasta el Amazonas. Estas naves, además, están equipadas con misiles Taurus de largo alcance. Para las prácticas, Timerman denunció que existían 13 polígonos de tiro en las islas que violaban los parámetros ambientales argentinos y las reglas de la Organización Marítima Internacional sobre seguridad. “Hay prácticas con misiles y Gran Bretaña no le avisa a la Argentina”, se quejó.

También mostró una imagen con las dos pistas de aterrizaje de la base de Mount Pleausant, una de 2900 y otra de 1500 metros, diseñadas para las naves de combate más modernas. El sistema de comunicaciones tampoco tiene mucho que ver con las necesidades de la exigua población malvinense.

En un mapa reveló las dieciocho repetidoras de radio que le permiten manejar una sofisticada red de comunicaciones en contacto con aviones y bases de guerra de cualquier parte del mundo. Lo mismo el radar HF, que comenzó a operar el 10 de diciembre pasado en la zona de Prado del Ganso. Son dieciséis mástiles de quince metros de altura que le habilitan comunicación permanente con países que tienen el mismo sistema –nombró a Estados Unidos, Francia, Japón y Canadá– y “no sólo el tráfico de ingreso al Atlántico Sur sino todo el tráfico marítimo y aéreo entre América del Sur y Sudáfrica”.

La presentación también incluyó un capítulo sobre el desarrollo de la cuestión Malvinas en las Naciones Unidas y los antecedentes históricos del conflicto. Al momento de las preguntas, al canciller lo consultaron por el origen de esta escalada.

Se produce a partir de las declaraciones del primer ministro Cameron llamando a la militarización y al considerar ‘colonialista’ a la Argentina. En ningún momento el gobierno británico ha apelado al diálogo”, respondió.

Otra pregunta fue sobre la posición argentina acerca de la autodeterminación de los pueblos, la doctrina que esgrimen los británicos para negarse a discutir la soberanía. El canciller subrayó que Argentina tenía una larga historia de apoyo a los procesos de autodeterminación, pero que en este caso no se podía aplicar esa doctrina. Primero, porque hubo una violación de la soberanía territorial argentina cuando Inglaterra invadió las islas en 1833. Segundo, porque la población que se instaló no es autóctona, sino que llegó después de la invasión.

Con los datos aportados, Timerman consideró que daba concluyentes muestras del proceso de militarización que lleva adelante el gobierno británico. “Este país redujo su presupuesto en todos los rubros, excepto en las Malvinas”, recordó. Acusó a Londres de “cuadruplicar” su poder naval en la zona y agregó que “la capacidad defensiva británica en Malvinas alcanza a toda la Argentina”.

En otra parte del mismo edificio neoyorquino, Lyall Grant, el representante británico en las Naciones Unidas, no negó el despliegue nuclear en el Atlántico Sur pero le restó importancia al decir que “nada ha cambiado” al respecto. “Nosotros no comentamos sobre la disposición de armas nucleares”, esquivó, pero añadió que “es conocido que hay submarinos en patrulla en todo el mundo”.

Insólitamente, Grant adjudicó el inicio de las hostilidades a la Argentina por la reforma constitucional de 1994 (ver recuadro) y dejó flotando una advertencia con olor a pólvora: “Nosotros no queremos agravar la retórica, pero si alguien trata de aprovecharse del 30º aniversario de la guerra de las islas, obviamente defenderemos robustamente nuestra posición”.

Fuentes/RNV y Página 12

http://www.correodelorinoco.gob.ve/multipolaridad/argentina-denuncio-militarizacion-atlantico-sur-por-reino-unido/


Robotizando la guerra

Juan Gelman/Página12/Argentina

9 Febrero 2012, 07:28 PM

El presidente Obama confirmó que EE.UU. ataca la zona tribal del noroeste de Pakistán con aviones no tripulados (ANT) (www.bbc.co.uk, 31112). No es una novedad desde que esa forma de intervención militar comenzó en el 2004, pero es la primera admisión oficial de su existencia. De hecho, los bombardeos con ANT se cuadruplicaron con creces bajo el gobierno estadounidense actual en relación con la era W. Bush. El Pentágono está desarrollando un nuevo tipo de guerra para evitar futuras invasiones.

Los ANT son relativamente baratos, en especial si su costo se compara con el del caza F35, el más avanzado hasta ahora que produce la Lockheed Martin: unos 300 millones de dólares cada unidad. Pueden volar largas distancias y cruzar cualquier frontera sin peligro para la tripulación, porque no la tiene, permanecer en el aire mucho tiempo y los manejan electrónicamente militares cómodamente sentados en bases que a veces están muy lejos del objetivo, por ejemplo en Nevada, EE.UU. Son capaces de despegar y aterrizar en la cubierta de los portaaviones y se trabaja en un modelo que pueda aterrizar sin control humano. No es casual que conserven un lugar destacado en los presupuestos de guerra estadounidenses pese a los recortes anunciados.

El Pentágono ha destinado bases para los ANT en buena parte del mundo: se estima que son 60, por ahora, y se conoce que algunas funcionan en Djibuti, los Emiratos Arabes Unidos, Afganistán, las islas Seychelles. El capturado en Irán prueba que también se utilizan en misiones de espionaje. Son ideales para violar espacios aéreos ajenos y, además de los paquistaníes, los vienen sufriendo los yemenitas.

Obama se apresuró a señalar que la mayoría de las víctimas causadas por los ANT en Pakistán figuraban en “una lista de terroristas” y que las bajas civiles “no son grandes”. Como, salvo excepciones, no se conocen sus identidades, puede que sí y puede que no. John Brennan, asesor principal del mandatario en materia de contraterrorismo, llegó a afirmar el año pasado que el número de muertes de civiles era igual a cero (www.latyimes.com, 29611). Hay informaciones que lo contradicen rotundamente.

La oficina de periodismo de investigación de la City University de Londres advirtió el año pasado que al menos 175 niños figuraban entre las más de dos mil víctimas de los ANT hasta ese momento (www.thebureauinvestigates.com, 10811). La institución –que durante cuatro meses llevó a cabo un trabajo de campo en Waziristán, la zona lindante con Afganistán que sobre todo padece las incursiones programadas a miles de kilómetros de distancia– subraya en sus estudios más recientes que los ataques se dirigen también a quienes procuran rescatar a los heridos, a reuniones tribales, funerales y bodas (4212). Amnesty cuestionó la legalidad de estas incursiones que violan la soberanía nacional de Pakistán. La Casa Blanca las justifica con su habitual desparpajo: “... de acuerdo con el derecho internacional, tenemos la autoridad para actuar contra Al Qaida y sus fuerzas asociadas”, dijo Brennan (www.nytimes.com, 17911). “Las fuerzas asociadas” son las mismas que entrenó y financió la CIA para expulsar a los soviéticos de Afganistán.

Hace más de tres años que Noor Behrman, nativo de Waziristán, documenta fotográficamente el impacto de los misilazos de los ANT. “A veces él llega al lugar pocos minutos después de la explosión, deja la cámara a un lado y se ocupa primero de revisar los escombros en busca de sobrevivientes. Un trabajo peligroso y desagradable. Los ANT suelen atacar de nuevo minutos después, de manera que escarbar para ver si hay heridos es arriesgado”, registra The Guardian (17711). Las conclusiones de Behram son terminantes: “Por cada 10 o 15 personas muertas, tal vez abaten a un militante. No cuento cuántos talibán han caído. Cuento cuántos niños, mujeres, gente inocente, han caído”.

Washington ensaya otro artefacto de la guerra a distancia que confiere a los bombardeos aéreos de la Primera Guerra Mundial la calidad de experiencia infantil. Este nuevo robot es el “Vehículo 2 de tecnología hipersónica”, un proyectil capaz de alcanzar un objetivo en cualquier punto del planeta en menos de una hora: estará dotado de una velocidad ocho veces superior a la del sonido y podrá volar 21.000 km en 60 minutos (www.wired.com, 171112). Para qué desperdiciar marines en la ocupación de países ajenos.

Concurren a ese fin los operativos clandestinos de las fuerzas especiales, 60.000 efectivos distribuidos en 120 naciones, es decir, casi dos tercios de los países de la Tierra (www.tomdispatch.com, 5212), que también se dedican a vulnerar soberanías nacionales convirtiéndolas en un papel usado, inútil, sin lugar.

http://www.rnv.gov.ve/noticias/?act=ST&f=15&t=176543


English


ARRESTING IMF OFFICIALS FOR IMPOSING "DEADLY ECONOMIC MEDICINE"? Greek police union wants to arrest EU/IMF officials

Global Research, February 11, 2012

Montreal Gazette


A general strike gripped Greece in protest against new austerity measures demanded with increasing urgency by the European Union as part of a debt rescue deal with banks.

Greece's largest police union has threatened to issue arrest warrants for officials from the country's European Union and International Monetary Fund lenders for demanding deeply unpopular austerity measures.

In a letter obtained by Reuters on Friday, the Federation of Greek Police accused the officials of "...blackmail, covertly abolishing or eroding democracy and national sovereignty" and said one target of its warrants would be the IMF's top official for Greece, Poul Thomsen.

The threat is largely symbolic since legal experts say a judge must first authorize such warrants, but it shows the depth of anger against foreign lenders who have demanded drastic wage and pension cuts in exchange for funds to keep Greece afloat.

"Since you are continuing this destructive policy, we warn you that you cannot make us fight against our brothers. We refuse to stand against our parents, our brothers, our children or any citizen who protests and demands a change of policy," said the union, which represents more than two-thirds of Greek policemen.

"We warn you that as legal representatives of Greek policemen, we will issue arrest warrants for a series of legal violations ... such as blackmail, covertly abolishing or eroding democracy and national sovereignty."

The letter was also addressed to the European Central Bank's mission chief in Greece, Klaus Masuch, and the former European Commission chief inspector for Greece, Servaas Deroose.

Policemen have borne the brunt of the anger of massed protesters who frequently march to parliament and clash with police in riot gear. Chants of "Cops, pigs, murderers!" are regularly hurled at policemen or scribbled on walls.

Thousands turned out on Friday for the latest protest in Athens, this time against new austerity measures that include a 22 percent cut in the minimum wage.

A police union official said the threat to 'refuse to stand against' fellow Greeks was a symbolic expression of solidarity and did not mean police would halt their efforts to stop protests getting out of hand.

(Reporting by Lila Chotzoglou, Writing by Deepa Babington, editing by Tim Pearce)

© Copyright (c) The Montreal Gazette

http://www.globalresearch.ca/index.php?context=va&aid=29226


The State Has Declared War On The American People

U.S. citizens are now the primary target of the war on terror

Paul Joseph Watson
Prison Planet.com
Friday, February 10, 2012

With the announcement that 30,000 drones are expected to fill American skies within ten years, the U.S. government has officially declared war on the American people, turning to technology normally used to hunt down insurgents abroad as the whole arsenal of the war on terror is re-focused domestically.

The Federation Aviation Administration said up to 30,000 drones could be in airspace shared with airliners carrying passengers,” reports UPI.

Once signed by president Obama, the FAA Reauthorization Act allows for the FAA to permit the use of drones and develop regulations for testing and licensing by 2015.

Some types of surveillance drones are already being used by police departments across the country, including in Montgomery County, Texas, where the Department of Homeland Security recently gave the go-ahead for law enforcement in the United States to deploy the ShadowHawk mini drone drone helicopter that has the ability to taze suspects from above as well as carrying 12-gauge shotguns and grenade launchers.

US law enforcement bodies are already using drone technology to spy on Americans. In December, a Predator B drone was called in to conduct surveillance over a family farm in North Dakota as part of a SWAT raid on the Brossart family, who were suspects in the egregious crime of stealing six missing cows. Local police in this one area have already used the drone on two dozen occasions since June last year.

The DHS also recently announced a plan to spend up to $50 million dollars on a spy system that has been used to hunt insurgents in Iraq and Afghanistan for the purposes of “emergency and non-emergency incidents” within the United States.

While preparing the use of surveillance drones against Americans, the U.S. government is also keen to characterize a myriad of behaviors and activities, no matter how normal or mundane, as potential indicators of terrorism, encouraging citizens to spy on each other in a chilling throwback to how people were hired as informants under the East German Stasi.

As part of its Communities Against Terrorism program, the FBI is encouraging business owners from across the spectrum to spy on their customers.

Lists of examples of “suspicious behavior” being sent out to everything from Internet Cafes to tattoo parlors define things like paying for a cup of coffee with cash, buying food in bulk, and showing an interest in online privacy as evidence of potential terrorist activity.

The DHS has also released numerous PSAs that depict routine activities as potential signs of terrorism, including using a video camera, talking to police officers, wearing hoodies, driving vans, writing on a piece of paper, and using a cell phone recording application.

The federal agency attracted much derision last week when it announced that Super Bowl vendors, including hot dog sellers, had been trained to spot terrorists under the First Observer program.

Even more chilling, the feds have also begun to characterize perfectly legitimate political and economic beliefs as those held by terrorists, effectively denouncing them as thought crimes.

As Reuters reported on Monday, authorities are now treating those who “believe the United States went bankrupt by going off the gold standard” as extremists who are a potential violent threat to law enforcement. The DHS has also previously characterized returning veterans, Ron Paul supporters, gold investors, and people who display political bumper stickers as potential domestic terrorists.

All this serves to underscore the fact that the American people have now been targeted as the number one terror threat in the eyes of the authorities. The state has declared war on U.S. citizens. Not only will they be subject to surveillance and intimidation campaigns, but with the recent passage of the indefinite detention provision of the NDAA, the government has afforded itself the power to hold Americans without trial.

*********************

Paul Joseph Watson is the editor and writer for Prison Planet.com. He is the author of Order Out Of Chaos. Watson is also a regular fill-in host for The Alex Jones Show and Infowars Nightly News.

http://www.prisonplanet.com/the-state-has-declared-war-on-the-american-people.html


Syria’s Uprising in Context


by Stephen Gowans

Global Research, February 11, 2012

gowans.wordpress.com/

Since the beginning of the unrest in Syria, “the government has said that while some protesters have legitimate grievances, the uprising is driven by militant Islamists with foreign backing.” [1] This hardly squares with the view of Western state officials and media commentators who say that an authoritarian regime is killing its people and violently suppressing a largely peaceful movement for democracy.

Who’s right?

There’s no question that there has been a longstanding Islamist opposition in Syria to Ba’athist rule. The Arab Socialist Ba’ath Party has been in power since 1963. The party’s roots are in Pan-Arabism, non-Marxist socialism, and liberation from colonialism, imperialism and religious sectarianism. Being secular, socialist (though diminishingly so) and dominated by a heterodox Shiite sect, the Alawi, Syria’s lead party has held no appeal for the Sunni majority, which has leaned toward the Muslim Brotherhood.

Neither is there any question that Islamist uprisings have become a habitual occurrence in Syria. Condemning the Alawi as heretics and resentful of the Ba’athists’ separation of Islam from the state, the Muslim Brotherhood organized riots against the government in 1964, 1965, 1967 and 1969.

On coming to power in 1970, Afiz Assad—the current president’s father– tried to overcome the Sunni opposition by encouraging private enterprise and weakening the party’s commitment to socialism, and by opening space for Islam. This, however, did little to mollify the Muslim Brothers, who organized new riots and called for a Jihad against Assad, denigrating him as “the enemy of Allah.” His “atheist” government was to be brought down and Alawi domination of the state ended. By 1977, the Mujahedeen were engaged in a guerrilla struggle against the Syrian army and its Soviet advisers, culminating in the 1982 occupation of the city of Hama. The Syrian army quelled the occupation, killing 20,000 to 30,000.

In an effort to win the Islamists’ acquiescence, Assad built new mosques, opened Koranic schools, and relaxed restrictions on Islamic dress and publications. At the same time, he forged alliances with pro-Islamic countries and organizations, including Sunni Sudan, Shia Iran, Hezbollah, Hamas and Islamic Jihad. While these measures secured some degree of calm, Islamists remained a perennial source of instability and the government was on continual guard against “a resurgence of Sunni Islamic fundamentalists.” [2]

The United States hasn’t created an opposition, but it has acted to strengthen it. US funding to the Syrian opposition began flowing under the Bush administration in 2005 [3] if not earlier. The Bush administration had dubbed Syria a member of a “junior varsity axis of evil,” along with Libya and Cuba, and toyed with the idea of making Syria the next target of its regime change agenda after Iraq. [4]

Around the same time, Syrian exiles in Europe founded the Movement for Justice and Development, openly calling for the overthrow of the Ba’athist government. The Movement was one of the key recipients of US lucre. The leader of the organization, Anas Al-Abdah, is a member of the Syrian National Council, the main exile opposition group, which French Foreign Minister Alain Juppé and UK Foreign Secretary William Hague have designated a legitimate representative of the Syrian people [5] –a matter one would think should be decided by Syrians, not outsiders, and least of all not former colonial powers. The group “has a significant contingent of Islamists.” [6]

The Syrian National Council’s foil is the National Coordinating Body for Democratic Change in Syria, led by opposition figures who live inside the country. The body, left-wing and secular, is open to dialogue with the Assad government and subscribes to the three no’s: no to foreign intervention, no to sectarianism, and no to violence. [7]

The Islamist-heavy Syrian National Council, by contrast, follows the three yeses: Yes to foreign intervention, yes to sectarianism, and yes to violence. It has “called on the international community to take aggressive …steps, including the possible establishment of a no-fly zone in Syria” [8] and appears to be tied up with the Free Syrian Army, a largely Sunni formation which operates out of Turkey and has, it says, about 10,000 fighters. [9] “The Saudis and Qataris are reported to be funding and arming the opposition” while “Western special forces are said to be giving military support on the ground.” [10]

SNC leaders say that if they succeed in achieving their goal of replacing Assad they’ll cut Damascus’s alliance with Iran and end arms shipments to Hezbollah and Hamas [11]—a policy that would be welcome in Washington and Israel.

In September, The New York Times reported that the Obama administration was discussing how to bring about Assad’s ouster but that “the administration does not want to look as if the United States is trying to orchestrate the outcome in Syria.” [12] It is no longer necessary for Washington to conceal its regime change ambitions. Its description of the unrest as violent dictatorship against a peaceful demand for democracy, rather than the alternative and more descriptive narrative of secular government against an armed Islamist rebellion, has become hegemonic. Who’s going to blame Washington for intervening on the side of, what’s understood to be, a popular rebellion for democracy? Accordingly, the State Department now openly acknowledges that it “will continue working with Syria’s political opposition to ensure an eventual political transition” [13], which is to say it will continue to pursue its longstanding policy of working with the opposition to bring about the Ba’athists’ overthrow.

Washington’s motivation for ousting Assad has nothing whatever to do with his handling of the rebellion. Assad’s reaction to the uprising is only relevant as raw material to be shaped, twisted and manipulated into a pretext for overt intervention. Washington’s concerns lie elsewhere, unrelated to the welfare of Syrians or attachment to spreading democracy. Indeed, were Washington impelled by humanitarian concerns and a desire to overturn tyranny, it would be difficult to explain its foreign policy record.

When democracy-hating Bahrain, home to the US Fifth Fleet and paradise for foreign investors, violently put down a popular uprising last year, Washington sat on its hands. Sometimes raw interest trumps principle, explained the United States’ newspaper of record, The New York Times, as if US foreign policy is normally governed by principle, and departures from it in favor of interests are aberrations, rather than the opposite.

The cracking of Shiite skulls in Bahrain was ably assisted by the Sunni petro-monarchies of the Gulf Cooperation Council, which dispatched tanks and troops—the same democracy-abominating countries which have taken a lead role in demanding that Assad undertake democratic reforms. Every one of them absolutist states, they have joined the United States, Britain and France in a preposterously named “friends of Syrian democracy” group. Qatar, one of its members, was instrumental in providing material and propaganda support to the Libyan rebels—many of whom, like their Syrian counterparts, were militant Islamists. The spectacle of the Gulf Cooperation Council aligning itself with what is called a pro-democracy rebellion is a bit like the Wall Street Journal backing the communist-era Solidarity trade union as the true face of socialism in Poland. Whatever Solidarity was, it was not the true face of socialism, which is why the Wall Street Journal backed it.

Neither has Washington taken effective, concrete measures to prevent Israel from cracking down violently on Palestinians who rise up against Israeli oppression, let alone recognize Israeli oppression as illegitimate. Washington’s violent intervention in Iraq on entirely baseless grounds, and its authoring of a colossal humanitarian tragedy there, hardly recommends the United States as a country whose foreign policy is governed by a commitment to peace and democracy, though its commitment to war and the plundering of countries unable to defend themselves is undoubted.

No, Washington’s ambition to overthrow Syria’s Ba’athist state is a longstanding one which pre-dates the current uprising. The US state has been keen to install a pro-imperialist government in Damascus since at least 1957, when it tried unsuccessfully to engineer a coup there. In 2003, the United States initiated a program of economic warfare against Syria, and in 2005, if not earlier, started to funnel money to opposition elements to mobilize energy for regime change.

Apart from Syria’s irritating Washington by allying with Iran, backing Hezbollah, and providing material assistance to Palestinian national liberation movements, the country exhibits a tendency shared by all US regime change targets: a predilection for independent, self-directed, economic development. This is expressed in state-ownership of important industries, subsidies to domestic firms, controls on foreign investment, and subsidization of basic commodities. These measures restrict the profit-making opportunities of US corporations, banks and investors, and since it is their principals who hold sway in Washington, US foreign policy is accordingly shaped to serve their interests.

The US State Department complains that Syria has “failed to join an increasingly interconnected global economy,” which is to say, has failed to turn over its state-owned enterprises to private investors, among them Wall Street financial interests. The State Department is aggrieved that “ideological reasons” continue to prevent the Assad government from liberalizing Syria’s economy. As a result of the Ba’athists’ ideological fixation on socialism, “privatization of government enterprises is still not widespread.” The economy “remains highly controlled by the government.” [14]

The Wall Street Journal and Heritage Foundation are equally displeased. “Hafez al-Assad’s son Bashar, who succeeded him in 2000, has failed to deliver on promises to reform Syria’s socialist economy.”

Moreover,

The state dominates many areas of economic activity, and a generally repressive environment marginalizes the private sector and prevents the sustainable development of new enterprises or industries. Monetary freedom has been gravely marred by state price controls and interference.
[...]
The repressive business environment, burdened by heavy state intervention, continues to retard entrepreneurial activity and prolong economic stagnation. Labor regulations are rigid, and the labor market suffers from state interference and control.
systemic non-tariff barriers severely constrain freedom to trade. Private investment is deterred by heavy bureaucracy, direct state interference, and political instability. Although the number of private banks has increased steadily since they were first permitted in 2004, government influence in the financial sector remains extensive. [15]

The US Library of Congress country study on Syria refers to “the socialist structure of the government and economy,” points out that “the government continues to control strategic industries,” mentions that “many citizens have access to subsidized public housing and many basic commodities are heavily subsidized,” and that “senior regime members” have “hampered” the liberalization of the economy. [16]

All in all, Syria remains too much like the socialist state the Arab Socialist Ba’ath Party founders envisaged for it, and too little like a platform for increasing the profits of overseas banks, investors and corporations. Accordingly, its regime of self-directed, independent, economic development must be changed. The militant Islamist uprising, helped along by US money, propaganda and diplomatic support, has set the stage for Washington to realize its regime-change ambitions. Washington has framed the conflict as one between peaceful pro-democracy demonstrators and a murderous tyrant whose thirst for power has driven him to the extremes of killing his own people. Assad has, by this reckoning, “lost legitimacy” and must step aside.

Of course, the idea that the conflict is the latest in a long line of militant Islamic eruptions against a secular Syrian state is never to be entertained. Neither is the notion to be contemplated that the insurgency has evolved into a civil war. There were more casualties in the US Civil War than in all other US wars combined, yet complaints about Abraham Lincoln killing his own people–and on a grandiose scale–are never heard. The Spanish Republic was never abominated, except by rightists, for killing the Spaniards who rose up against it. In these conflicts, there were material and class interests at stake—and the clash of them led to the killing of rebel forces by the government and of government forces by the rebels. And so too in Syria. Yes, in civil wars, governments do kill their own people.

I’m on the side of the Syrian government. The Assads backed away from the Ba’athist commitment to socialism further than I would have liked, but I recognize that the possibilities for achieving socialism in a small Third World country have become vanishingly small since the demise of the Soviet Union (and were not without formidable challenges before then.) All the same, the Ba’athists continue to obstinately hold on to elements of the party’s socialist program; hence, the US State Department’s complaint about “ideological reasons” getting in the way of privatization.

Moreover, Ba’athist Syria remains an organized force against Zionism and for Palestinian national liberation, and it’s not clear that a successor government would follow the same path. Importantly, what would likely follow Assad’s ouster is hardly to be embraced: A country thrown into chaos by competing militias and warlords, where torture and the systematic extermination of the old regime’s supporters run rampant, as has characterized post-Gaddafi Libya, or the installation of a US puppet regime to facilitate the exploitation of Syria’s land, labor and resources by Western captains of industry and titans of finance. A third choice of more space for other political parties and the parliament being given new powers is academic. The hard-core of the rebellion won’t be satisfied with anything less than the complete extirpation of the Ba’athists and what they stand for: some measure of socialism and the secular state. Neither will the United States, Britain, and France settle for the continuation in Damascus of a state committed to independent, self-directed economic development and alliance with Iran.

The choice, then, is between, on the one hand, the triumph of yet another eruption of imperialism under the guise of humanitarian intervention, and on the other, the preservation of the Ba’athist state, and Syria’s self-determination. If the Ba’athists are overthrown, a blow will be struck for imperialism. Their survival will preserve the life of an organized force against Zionism, imperialism and for some measure of self-directed development toward socialism.

Notes

1. Anthony Shadid, “Assad says he rejects West’s call to resign”, The New York Times, August 21, 2011.
2. US Library of Congress. A Country Study: Syria. http://lcweb2.loc.gov/frd/cs/sytoc.html
3. Craig Whitlock, “U.S. secretly backed Syrian opposition groups, cables released by Wikileaks show”, The Washington Post, April 17, 2011.
4. Moshe Ma’oz, “Damscus vs. Washington: Between the ‘Axis of Evil’ and ‘Pax Americana’”, in Bruce Cumings, Evarand Abrahamian and Moshi Ma’oz. Investing the Axis of Evil: The Truth about North Korea, Iran and Syria. The New Press. 2004.
5. Jay Solomon, “Clinton Meets With Syrian Opposition,” The Wall Street Journal, December 6, 2011.
6. Charles Levinson, “As Syria strikes kill scores, opposition seeks backing”, The Wall Street Journal, February 10, 2012.
7. Mazda Majidi, “Will Syria be another Libya?” Liberation, November 29, 2011.
8. Jay Solomon and Nour Malas, “Syria would cut Iran military tie, opposition head says”, The Wall Street Journal, December 2, 2011
9. Dan Bileksky, “Factional splits hinder drive to topple Syria leader”, The New York Times, December 8, 2011.
10. Seumas Milne, “Intervention in Syria will escalate not stop the killing”, The Guardian (UK), February 7, 2012.
11. Jay Solomon and Nour Malas, “Syria would cut Iran military tie, opposition head says”, The Wall Street Journal, December 2, 2011
12. Helene Cooper, “U.S. is quietly getting ready for Syria without Assad”, The New York Times, September 19, 2011.
13. Charles Levinson and Gregory L. White, “America Exits Syria as Russia Makes Push”, The Wall Street Journal, February 7, 2012.
14. US State Department website. http://www.state.gov/r/pa/ei/bgn/3580.htm#econ . Accessed February 8, 2012.
15. Index of Economic Freedom 2012. http://www.heritage.org/index/country/syria . Accessed February 8, 2012.
16. US Library of Congress. A Country Study: Syria. http://lcweb2.loc.gov/frd/cs/sytoc.html


Stephen Gowans is a frequent contributor to Global Research.  Global Research Articles by Stephen Gowans

http://www.globalresearch.ca/index.php?context=va&aid=29221


New bill to allow 30,000 drones to fill American skies by 2020



Fri Feb 10, 2012 5:7PM


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There are serious policy questions on the horizon about privacy and surveillance, by both government agencies and commercial entities.”

Steven Aftergood, head of the Project on Government Secrecy at the Federation of American Scientists


The US Congress has passed a bill which approves government’s deployment of up to 30,000 spy drones in the country’s airspace by 2020, raising serious concerns about the ensuing privacy infringement.



The bill, which facilitates the government use of unmanned spy planes in US airspace, requires the Federal Aviation Administration to rush a plan to get as many drones in the air as possible within nine months.

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Reauthorization Act, which US President Barack Obama is expected to sign, also orders the FAA to develop regulations for the testing and licensing of commercial drones by 2015, The Washington Times reported.

Privacy advocates have protested that the measure will lead to the widespread use of drones for electronic surveillance by police agencies across the country and eventually by private companies as well.

“There are serious policy questions on the horizon about privacy and surveillance, by both government agencies and commercial entities,” said Steven Aftergood, who heads the Project on Government Secrecy at the Federation of American Scientists.

The Electronic Frontier Foundation also is “concerned about the implications for surveillance by government agencies,” said attorney Jennifer Lynch.

The provision in the legislation is the fruit of “a huge push by lawmakers and the defense sector to expand the use of drones” in American airspace, she added.

According to some estimates, the commercial drone market in the United States could be worth hundreds of millions of dollars once the FAA clears their use.

The US has been using the unmanned vehicles for its spy operations and assassination missions worldwide and the strikes have intensified since Obama took office three years ago.

HMV/HGH

http://presstv.com/detail/226010.html


Anti-ACTA day: Angry crowds take action (PHOTOS)

Published: 11 February, 2012, 22:00
Edited: 12 February, 2012, 01:39

The world has witnessed an unprecedented day of protests against ACTA. Hundreds of thousands of people have gathered in dozens of cities around the globe to protect what is left of the freedom of expression on the internet.

­Protesters from over 200 European cities consolidated their efforts to hold rallies across Europe. The controversial ACTA treaty was signed by the majority of European countries and now there is a battle to dissuade parliaments from ratifying the agreement.

Massive strikes took place in Germany with organizers saying that a total of some 100,000 people have gathered in many cities across the country, including Berlin, Hanover, Hamburg, and Cologne. Just the previous day Germany put on hold its joining the ACTA treaty after its Justice Ministry decided to wait until the issue is discussed in the European parliament.

Demonstrators protest against ACTA on February 11, 2012 in Berlin. (AFP Photo / Soeren Stache Germany Out)
Demonstrators protest against ACTA on February 11, 2012 in Berlin. (AFP Photo / Soeren Stache Germany Out)

Demonstrators protest against ACTA in Paris.
Demonstrators protest against ACTA in Paris.

In Paris hundreds of masked protesters marched against ACTA, which they say infringes on people’s personal freedoms.­

Up to 8,000 people marched in the Bulgarian capital, Sofia, carrying signs carrying such slogans as “ACTA la vista, baby!”

­In Lithuania’s capital, Vilnius, despite the freezing cold, hundreds of protesters rallied in front of the government buildings. Lithuania is one of the EU countries which signed the ACTA agreement, and the protesters are demanding that the government calls off its ratification.

A reasonably large protest was staged in Malta’s capital, Valetta, where more than 500 young people gathered to urge the state’s parliament not to ratify ACTA.

About 1,500 people gathered in the capital of Estonia, Tallinn, while several hundred staged a protest in the university city of Tartu.

The earlier mass discontent over ACTA in the streets and on the Internet has already delivered some tangible results. Some EU countries, including Poland, Slovakia, Czech Republic, Latvia and Germany, have decided to halt their joining processes until the European parliament reaches an agreement on the issue in June.

Last month massive rallies took place in Poland and the Czech Republic, as the countries signed the ACTA agreement. On January 26, the controversial ACTA treaty was signed by the 22 of the 27 European Union member states (excluding Germany, Cyprus, Estonia, the Netherlands and Slovakia), and the EU itself.

So far ACTA has been signed by a total of 31 countries across the globe, but none of the signatories have yet ratified it. To come into force ACTA needs to be ratified by at least six countries.

­Insult to democracy

Peter Bradwell, a campaigner for the Open Rights Group, believes ACTA is an “unacceptable insult to democracy” as the agreement hands too much unchecked power to private interests.

The system proposed by ACTA allows businesses to have content taken down and to have users placed under surveillance by their Internet service providers, he said in an interview with RT.

It effectively criminalizes “the wrong people” and, intentionally or unintentionally, harms freedom of expression. “You are creating a system that can be abused and where mistakes can happen. That’s why it’s such a dangerous agreement,” he explains.

Watch RT's interview with Peter Bradwell



Protestors holding Guy Fawkes masks shout slogans during a demonstration against ACTA in central Sofia February 11, 2012. (Reuters / Stoyan Nenov)

Protesters take part in a demonstration against ACTA in front of the Government Palace in Vilnius on February 11, 2012. (AFP Photo / Petras Malukas)
Protesters take part in a demonstration against ACTA in front of the Government Palace in Vilnius on February 11, 2012. (AFP Photo / Petras Malukas)

Demonstrators protest against ACTA in Valetta, Malta. (Image from www.timesofmalta.com)
Demonstrators protest against ACTA in Valetta, Malta. (Image from www.timesofmalta.com)

Protesters take part in a demonstration against ACTA at the Freedom Square in central Tallinn on February 11, 2012. (AFP photo / Raigo Pajula)
Protesters take part in a demonstration against ACTA at the Freedom Square in central Tallinn on February 11, 2012. (AFP photo / Raigo Pajula)

http://rt.com/news/acta-protests-rallies-europe-089/


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