War on Drugs

Iran-Contra is not dead: Gary Webb's Dark Alliance on the big screen! Kill the Messenger tackles corporate media & CIA-aligned drug trafficking

"Even now, those who like to say Iran-Contra’s long over, are wrong.

There are still Congressional hearings about it today that we don’t hear much about because they’re behind closed doors, but there is still media interest in it.

There are many people within the government who can still be hurt, and they are in even higher positions than they were then. That’s why it remains sensitive.”Al Martin, The Conspirators: Secrets of an Iran Contra Insider p282 (2002)

kill-the-messenger1400-1000x428.jpg

Nothing is ever really acknowledged in America until it gets the Hollywood treatment, wrapped by a screenplay and soundtrack into that big image-stream narrative America tells itself as it reproduces its existence every day. The difficult map of intelligence agencies and the war on drugs has mostly been skirted by Hollywood, but in an overdue turn of good fortune Gary Webb’s story finally gets pinned to the Big Board pretty well.

Journalist Gary Webb used the Internet to nearly bring the war on drugs to the brink of collapse by exposing intelligence connections to leading cocaine flows in the US during Iran-Contra. In the 1990s major media forces were faced with critical new voices undermining the credibility of America's post-EO12333 drug war system. Like many before and since, Webb got the corporate media banhammer, portrayed here in incisive and indicting detail (looking at you, Walter Pincus).

"For the better part of a decade, a San Francisco Bay Area drug ring sold tons of cocaine to the Crips and Bloods street gangs of Los Angeles and funneled millions in drug profits to an arm of the contra guerrillas of Nicaragua run by the Central Intelligence Agency, the San Jose Mercury News has found." Gary Webb circa 1996.

Leading the way with a star-studded cast in Focus Features’ Kill the Messenger, a decent set of films taking on Iran-Contra-related intelligence intrigue and the war on drugs is hitting the US this month, and a veritable wave of news stories exploring these old narratives are popping up nationwide!

I was very lucky to get into an advance screening & now trying to provide here more links for those both new and old to this sick twisted tale at the heart of the American Dream. Iran-Contra really fascinated me in 2007 & I got books, started putting videos together until l’Affair d’2008RNC pulled me away into more local concerns. "Iran-Contra Goggles” remain useful to decode the same basic corrupt systems we have today.

Kill the Messenger covers Webb’s tragic story, as he exposes the roles of CIA assets moving literally tons of cocaine into the US to create a covert money source for the Contras in Nicaragua. Freeway Ricky Ross, the key recipient of the cocaine, has a film coming out Oct 17th, Freeway: Crack in the System and Shadows of Liberty also features a Gary Webb-oriented segment, “Killing the Messenger".

dark-alliance-7anim.gifKill the Messenger encompasses Gary’s story, Dark Alliance, the first groundbreaking news story to really go viral over the Internet, providing readers around the world with primary source documents and more to explore. Animated gifs - a new technology at the time - showed cocaine pathways flowing into the US.

Iran-Contra aficionados and Gary’s family, who supported the film’s production, will feel a strong sense of vindication, although the latter third of the story quits expanding our view of this high-level drug underworld as the bottom of Gary’s life gradually falls out.

We get a sound foundation under the story, it seems they didn’t cut any especially bad corners that would undermine this critical shot at contextualizing Webb in American journalism.

This film doesn’t explain Southern Air Transport or Barry Seal, later extensions of similar work, or the similar sad fates of Danny Casolaro, Michael Ruppert and others.

darktop.gifAs is tradition, it’s already been belittled in the New York Times - by David Carr, who frames the notion of CIA drug trafficking networks as it "might ring some distant, skeptical bell” — ignoring his own paper’s recent reporting on Karzai’s brother’s CIA-backed cartel style operation etc.

Jeremy Renner played a laudable role getting this whole thing out the door: "It resonated with movies like 'All the President's Men' and 'The Parallax View.’”

The CIA leisure suits, aviator sunglasses and careful color palettes harken to these carefully styled 1970s paranoia thrillers, both directed by Alan J Pakula in the “Paranoia Trilogy”.

Andy Garcia as Norwin Meneses and Michael Kenneth Williams as Freeway Ricky Ross are excellent, while Oliver Platt as the rumpled, dubious editor, Michael Sheen as the bureaucrat, all of these are well-crafted roles if brief. West Wing's Richard Schiff as the Washington Post's coverup editor ringleader was just right.

Ray Liotta’s surprise covert ops "nighttime of the soul” scene is also pretty damn good.

////

This nice media wave is a good chance for everyone to learn more, and hear from the old journalists who also got the banhammer for daring to push the truth out there. Robert Parry has a new piece: The CIA/MSM Contra-Cocaine Cover-Up (Oct 3 2014).

photo-hall.jpg

I’ll suggest giving money to NarcoNews to help them keep rolling, if you can. Part of the backstory contextualized by NarcoNews: The Field: Hollywood’s Gary Webb Movie and the Message that Big Media Couldn’t Kill. NarcoNews is hosting the original Dark Alliance archive here. Sept 24th update with the family: Narco News: Gary Webb: Vindicated

The CIA has even released its creepy internal reaction piece for PR control via FOIA: http://www.foia.cia.gov/sites/default/files/DOC_0001372115.pdf - "Managing a Nightmare: CIA Public Affairs and the Drug Conspiracy Story,” and the Intercept IDed the CIA writer as Nicholas Dujmovic.

“It’s like we say “Iran-Contra”. "Iran-Contra" activity continues to go on today. In some cases, it’s the very same names and faces. In other cases, it’s a newer, younger generation of names and faces. But the narcotics, weapons and fraud aspects still continue to this day.” - Al Martin p330

////

More coverage and reviews: How Kill the Messenger Will Vindicate Investigative Journalist Gary Webb | The Informer | LA Weekly

Positive review in Variety: ‘Kill the Messenger’ Review: Jeremy Renner Plays Journalist Gary Webb | Varietybush-cocaine.jpg

Skeptical review: 'Kill the Messenger' Review: Jeremy Renner's Muckraking Feels Half-Baked in This Biopic - TheWrap (Sept 26th)

'Kill the Messenger': Film Review - The Hollywood Reporter

Esquire Sept 2013: The late Chuck Bowden’s The Pariah - Esquire. A must-read on this whole equation. (on Scribd)

Ex-L.A. Times Writer Apologizes for "Tawdry" Attacks | News | Los Angeles | Los Angeles News and Events | LA Weekly

Robert Parry 2013: Contra-Cocaine Was a Real Conspiracy | Consortiumnews discussing how he and Brian Barger started the Contra-cocaine scandal unravelling at the AP in 1985.

cia-cocaine-reagan-bush-clinton.jpg“Kill the Messenger”: The dark side of journalism - Opinion Shop Sept 19 2014

Jeremy Renner Wears a Wedding Ring -Showbiz411 discusses film

Out On The Weekend - Esquire - Sept 5, quick story referencing Gary

The film is also based on a book by Nick Schou of the same name. Interview here. Book: Kill the Messenger: How the CIA's Crack-Cocaine Controversy Destroyed Journalist Gary Webb: Nick Schou, Charles Bowden. Audiobook read by Bowden.

Nick Schou on the adaptation of 'Kill the Messenger' | Creative Loafing Atlanta

Kill The Messenger: the Gary Webb story has holes but Renner's performance still sticks – review | Film | theguardian.com (Sept 26th)

CinemaBlend positive review: Kill The Messenger Review - CINEMABLEND

Pretty good WSWS writeup on recent FOIA: CIA document details cover-up of drug trafficking by Contras - World Socialist Web Site

We lost Charles Bowden recently and he was a true friend of Gary Webb. Charles Bowden has died, but his voice is louder than ever | the narcosphere Sept 2 2014

Public radio interview

Rotten Tomatoes only has 6 reviews up. This is #7 - and the only one with Ollie DC-6 gif below!

10658685_540006192768011_8256912623796221139_o.jpg

////

Freeway Ricky Ross is making his move in all this, somehow having survived everything so far. Last summer: Freeway Rick Is Dreaming - Los Angeles Magazine (May 2013) An odd story by Jesse Katz who had a unique long term relationship with him as a journalist.

Trailer for Freeway: Crack in the System: Dropping Oct 18th:

////

Another film, Shadows of Liberty, (FB) released in 2012 & playing Midwest theaters lately, includes everything from a “Killing the Messenger” segment on Webb & Dark Alliance to a Iraq marketing section covering Iraq Intel war spoofing, Iraqi National Congress, Rendon Group psyops discussed by James Bamford. Both hit the New York Times pretty hard, as well they should, in propagandizing for Iraq & attacking Webb.

In a latter section Sibel Edmonds and Phil Giraldi look at covert agents among US nuclear secrets & Marc Grossman at the State Dept. Really a nicely rounded collection, even if I’m not a big fan of some of the film participants. Detailed notes here. New Zealand review here.

////

Other materials. From inside the CIA: Statement of the CIA IG Hitz in 1998: https://www.uspiked.com/assets/article-assets/Shadows of Liberty/Statement of CIA Inspector General to The House Committee On Intelligence - March 16, 1998 - Wikisource, the free online library.pdf (also here) STATEMENT BY FREDERICK P. HITZ, INSPECTOR GENERAL, CIA.. Volume 1: https://www.cia.gov/library/reports/general-reports-1/cocaine/overview-of-report-of-investigation-2.html

Introduction: The Contra Story — Central Intelligence Agency

Namebase index from Hitz Report. Better know a player: CIA Report on Contras and Cocaine

Fusion: A drug cartel guide to laundering millions — Fusion (9/30/2014)

Freeway Ricky Ross as advocate for literacy: Former Drug Kingpin ‘Freeway’ Rick Ross Becomes Advocate for Literacy | Atlanta Daily World (9/26/2014)

/////

Supporting material: Panthers, Crips & Bloods: Bastards of the Party - Top Documentary Films (2005) a must see for the development of Los Angeles gang structure in the context of massive importation of drugs & sophisticated police & federal operations since the days of the Black Panthers.

Pissed off CIA honcho Duane Clarridge - “there’s never been a conspiracy in this country!” (great clip in two of these films)

EO12333: The Private Contractor angle: roughly speaking, once this executive order was created, devious operations could be wrapped in corporate fronts like “Southern Air Transport”, “Vortex”, “Evergreen International” and others even lesser known.

2.7 Contracting. Agencies within the Intelligence Community are authorized to enter into contracts or arrangements for the provision of goods or services with private companies or institutions in the United States and need not reveal the sponsorship of such contracts or arrangements for authorized intelligence purposes. Contracts or arrangements with academic institutions may be undertaken only with the consent of appropriate officials of the institution.

Executive Order 12333 is back in the news: The Ghost of Ronald Reagan Authorizes Most NSA Spying - The Intercept

They also point to a gap in the public reaction to Ed Snowden’s revelations about those programs. Despite that fact that most of the NSA’s spying relies on Reagan’s directive, Executive Order 12333, the vast majority of reform efforts have concentrated on the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) and other legislative fixes. “Congress’s reform efforts have not addressed the executive order,” notes Alex Abdo of the ACLU, ”and the bulk of the government’s disclosures in response to the Snowden revelations have conspicuously ignored the NSA’s extensive mandate under EO 12333.”

The documents assert that mandate baldly. A legal factsheet from the NSA, dated June 2013, states that the FISA, which requires judicial oversight over spying on Americans, “only regulates a subset of the NSA’s signals intelligence activities. NSA conducts the majority of its SIGINT activities solely pursuant to the authority provided by Executive Order 12333.”

Often referred to as “twelve triple three” or EO 12333, the executive order came into being in 1981 under Reagan. Much of the post-Snowden debate, particularly with respect to the bulk collection of Americans’ phone records, has focused on the interlocking legal authorities of Section 215 of the Patriot Act and the 2008 FISA Amendments Act. But, the ACLU notes, “because the executive branch issued and now implements the executive order all on its own, the programs operating under the order are subject to essentially no oversight from Congress or the courts.” The documents describe procedures for safeguarding the rights of Americans whose information might be “incidentally” collected under 12333, but those procedures are overseen by the director of national intelligence or the attorney general.

gary-webb-cartoon.jpg

Classic item: The only memo that made it out of Ollie’s Shredding Party, the Annotated Oliver North memo: Oliver North – Release of American Hostages in Beirut ("Diversion Memo") | Genius

From the Wilderness, Michael Ruppert’s old website: C.I.A. IG Report - Vol II - Oliver North is Toast!

Basic writeup: (3/23/98) CIA Admits Knowledge of Contra Drug Trafficking

The CIA IG report Part II: Volume II: The Contra Story — Central Intelligence Agency

////

Who? Oliver Hardy? Andy Garcia’s great line in Kill the Messenger about how it was Ollie’s idea to run drugs & guns around is a nod to Oliver North’s wonderful note: The “Honduran DC-6 which is being used for runs out of New Orleans is probably being used for drug runs into U.S."

dc6notes.gif

A personal favorite :]

////

The 1996 Los Angeles CIA Town Hall meeting on drug trafficking was a critical moment. I would identify this meeting as the closest point to total collapse of the war on drugs edifice since Nixon, and it’s worth noting Deutch resigned shortly thereafter. This meeting cost the director of the CIA his job - and two years later they had to concede so much of Gary’s work was 100% accurate.

cia-drug-trafficking-townhall.png

////

Another regular day - Day 28 of Iran Contra hearings Part 1, July 14 1987: They get into the weird Continuity of Government stuff in the 3rd hour.

////

Gary Webb on Gary Webb - CIA Drug Smuggling [2004] - YouTube

////

Mr Blum - portrayed in similar hairstyle fashion in Kill the Messenger: CIA Allegations of Cocaine Trafficking Conspiracy - Crack Epidemic (1996) - YouTube. Good stuff around 47 minutes about the prosecution manipulations.

blum.png

////

Immortal Technique - Immortal Technique - Peruvian Cocaine feat Diabolic, Tonedeff, Poison Pen, Loucipher, C-Rayz Walz - YouTube. The Scarface-sampling hiphop opus magnum of this whole damn thing.

////

Classic: Gary Webb on C-SPAN 1996: How Crack Funded a CIA War: Gary Webb Interview on the Contras and Ronald Reagan (1996) - YouTube

////

OTHER LINKS:10561558_519106554857975_5309717516771745206_n.jpg August 2005: Judas Retires: Jerry Ceppos and the Burning Memory of Gary Webb: Judas Retires: Jerry Ceppos and the Burning Memory of Gary Webb | the narcosphere. Still around at the LSU Mass Comm school: LSU Manship School of Mass Communication

Meh 2005 piece from AJR on Webb: American Journalism Review

Timeline: Understanding the Iran-Contra Affairs

Bill Conroy 2005: "He Drew Blood" » CounterPunch - includes Bowden discussion.

Esquire: Gary Webb's Glorious Comeback - Esquire June 2013

Esquire: Gary Webb And The Limits Of Vindication - Esquire June 2013

Semi-related: alt journalist Wayne Madsen on Franklin sex trafficking scandal which had Iran-contra financing connections. The “Conspiracy of Silence” is related but goes way, way beyond all this. Wayne also suspects a similar Iran-Contra-like complex role related to 9-11 and the Pinal Air Park intel aviation field in Arizona, I wouldn’t be surprised if that’s how it turns out. (The late author Philip Marshall seemed to be on this tack as well before his weird death in early 2013.)

garywebb.jpg

////

MOAR BIBLIOGRAPHY:10606152_537701239665173_8067769002059518467_n.jpg Dark Alliance is now available in paperback and you should buy it at your local bookseller.

Powderburns by Cele Castillo covers much of the same arena. Here is his Webb web page.

The Politics of Heroin in Southeast Asia (1972) by Alfred McCoy is *critical* because it’s probably the first academic book that shows how heroin is used geopolitically by US covert forces to finance their allies through the power of chemical dependency combined with covert logistics and the monopoly granted by the force of the state. Everything subsequent follows this pattern. [PDF 1] [PDF 2]

Film: The House I Live In by Eugene Jarecki (2012) & How to Make Money Selling Drugs (2012) by Matthew Cooke.

Al Martin: The Conspirators: Secrets of An Iran-Contra Insider (2002). Horribly edited but you won’t find a better collection of names and front companies, code words and the true texture of Reagan era intel/fraud complexes. *Not* for beginners.

Life During Wartime: Resisting Counterinsurgency by AK Press. Kristian Williams (Editor); Lara Messersmith-Glavin (Editor); William Munger (Editor). Great guide to drug war militarization in its most sophisticated forms.

Barry & The Boys: The CIA, the Mob & America’s Secret History (2001, 2006) by Daniel Hopsicker. Covers Iran-Contra related nodes especially Florida and New Orleans aviation and shell activities, Barry Seal and a lot of hemispheric covert operations in a jaunty style. Mad Cow Morning News has been persisting in Iran-Contra style exposures for a long time in Florida .

End Times: The Death of the Fourth Estate (Counterpunch): Alexander Cockburn, Jeffrey St. Clair. Covers corporate media corruption with major case study of media hit on Webb,

Cocaine Politics: Drugs, Armies and the CIA and Central America by Peter Dale Scott and Jonathan Marshall. (1991)

The Iran Contra Connection: Secret Teams and Covert Operations in the Reagan Era by Jonathan Marshall, Peter Dale Scott and Jane Hunter (1987)

The Killing Game by Gary Webb (2011). There are plenty of other good books but this can get you started, anyway.

////

Kill the Messenger was also the title of a film about FBI whistleblower Sibel Edmonds, produced in 2007. Watch it here, I thought it was quite good.

Also: Support NarcoNews! Narco News Needs Your Help at this Exciting Moment

A final note: Michael Kenneth Williams, who notably played gangsta-assassin Omar on the Wire, does a great job as Ricky Ross. He also plays an oddly related role in 2014’s “The Purge: Anarchy”, a pulpy dystopian fantasy about the government granting everyone the “right” to kill each other 12 hours a year. Williams’ character is the revolutionary who recognizes & resists how the elite surveil them and clink champagne glasses, as the lower classes kill each other mercilessly to maintain social stratification. I couldn’t think of a better parallel to the modern American war on drugs.

gary-webb-drive.png

Keep riding with those Aviators, Gary.
RIP Truth Tellers.

Sheriff Stanek lied on Minnesota Public Radio this morning about marijuana and local violence

Super quick note: Sheriff Stanek lied on Minnesota Public Radio this morning claiming that tons of people are intoxicated on marijuana when they commit violent crimes - a dramatic distortion of yesterday's Stanek Star Tribune op-ed saying more than 50% of people booked at Hennepin Co Jail test positive (as one can test positive for weeks after smoking MJ).

Harry Anslinger abandoned this particular tactic decades ago. MPR mentioned my tweet around noon "Dan says Stanek just lied on MPR" and now the meme is rolling around further ;) stay tuned …..

See:

http://minnesota.publicradio.org/display/web/2013/09/19/daily-circuit-ri... http://www.startribune.com/opinion/commentaries/224151231.html

Lies on MPR: "When you show me that in a jail that books 40,000 people a year for a variety of offenses, whether drunk driving, domestic assault, rape, robbery, murder, and I don't have 54 percent of them under the influence of marijuana, maybe I'll say something different," he said. "But at this point the facts speak for themselves."

Star Tribune totally different claim: "I have seen firsthand in Hennepin County that there is a direct connection between marijuana and violent crime. Drug task forces here have linked marijuana to assaults and homicides. In the Hennepin County Adult Detention Center, marijuana is the most commonly detected drug among the 36,000 inmates who are booked into the facility each year. According to our most recent data, approximately 54 percent of males arrested for violent crime test positive for marijuana in Hennepin County."

You're busted for lying about the war on drugs and drug effects, sheriff. Alcohol causes way more violence.

UPDATE 3:45 Saturday: Aaron Rupar @ City Pages expands in more detail on the falsity of the pot/violence link as shown in relatively plentiful academic studies. 459 FB likes, 27 tweets and 119 local comments. Hennepin County Sheriff Rich Stanek thinks pot makes you violent - thanks @atrupar for the hat tip! On Friday, the Star Tribune carried a good op-ed from west coast radio host Russ Belville as well: Sheriff Stanek's misdirection on marijuana | Star Tribune.

Susan Perry in MinnPost also wrote a more detailed medical perspective: Sheriff Stanek's marijuana comments confuse correlation and causation | MinnPost. Well done everyone!

New data mining revelations, DEA drawn in quickly; Privacy & Surveillance DICE, PROTON, CRISSCROSS & CLEARWATER partial master programs? Lexis-Nexis on private side

It's a pretty woolly political scene right now & wanted to slam up some docs leading different directions on this. At least the damn narrative is moving along.

More or less we're looking at the merging of criminal investigations with direct military signals intelligence (SIGINT) technology run by the same contractors that recently ran these technocratic social control 'kinetic' programs for the Pentagon in assorted occupied lands around the Middle East etc.

Naturally the war on drugs first brought this war home - special bonus points for the Viktor Bout angle of the DEA SOD/DICE projects story from Reuters earlier...

Latest: Drug Agents Use Vast Phone Trove, Eclipsing N.S.A.’s - NYTimes.com

For at least six years, law enforcement officials working on a counternarcotics program have had routine access, using subpoenas, to an enormous AT&T database that contains the records of decades of Americans’ phone calls — parallel to but covering a far longer time than the National Security Agency’s hotly disputed collection of phone call logs.

The Hemisphere Project, a partnership between federal and local drug officials and AT&T that has not previously been reported, involves an extremely close association between the government and the telecommunications giant.

The government pays AT&T to place its employees in drug-fighting units around the country. Those employees sit alongside Drug Enforcement Administration agents and local detectives and supply them with the phone data from as far back as 1987. ......

Hemisphere covers every call that passes through an AT&T switch — not just those made by AT&T customers — and includes calls dating back 26 years, according to Hemisphere training slides bearing the logo of the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy. Some four billion call records are added to the database every day, the slides say; technical specialists say a single call may generate more than one record. Unlike the N.S.A. data, the Hemisphere data includes information on the locations of callers.

The slides were given to The New York Times by Drew Hendricks, a peace activist in Port Hadlock, Wash. He said he had received the PowerPoint presentation, which is unclassified but marked “Law enforcement sensitive,” in response to a series of public information requests to West Coast police agencies.

The program was started in 2007, according to the slides, and has been carried out in great secrecy.

“All requestors are instructed to never refer to Hemisphere in any official document,” one slide says. A search of the Nexis database found no reference to the program in news reports or Congressional hearings.

The Obama administration acknowledged the extraordinary scale of the Hemisphere database and the unusual embedding of AT&T employees in government drug units in three states.

Oh the war on drugs, will your terrible travesties never end... Nice work exposing this program by all involved!! A spectacular catch for sure.

////

Meanwhile we also have yet to deal with the terrible secret Special Operations Division which as this slide makes clear, subverts the entire concept of criminal defense and discovery. Therefore probably all drug cases should be thrown out, eh?

SOD-DEA-coverup.jpeg

Rules of SOD Photo Source - REUTERS

Exclusive: U.S. directs agents to cover up program used to investigate Americans | Reuters via Cryptogon.com: U.S. COMMUNICATIONS INTELLIGENCE SECRETLY SHARED WITH LAW ENFORCEMENT FOR USE AGAINST AMERICANS IN CRIMINAL INVESTIGATIONS

By John Shiffman and Kristina Cooke

WASHINGTON | Mon Aug 5, 2013 3:25pm EDT

(Reuters) - A secretive U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration unit is funneling information from intelligence intercepts, wiretaps, informants and a massive database of telephone records to authorities across the nation to help them launch criminal investigations of Americans.

Although these cases rarely involve national security issues, documents reviewed by Reuters show that law enforcement agents have been directed to conceal how such investigations truly begin - not only from defense lawyers but also sometimes from prosecutors and judges.

The undated documents show that federal agents are trained to "recreate" the investigative trail to effectively cover up where the information originated, a practice that some experts say violates a defendant's Constitutional right to a fair trial. If defendants don't know how an investigation began, they cannot know to ask to review potential sources of exculpatory evidence - information that could reveal entrapment, mistakes or biased witnesses.

"I have never heard of anything like this at all," said Nancy Gertner, a Harvard Law School professor who served as a federal judge from 1994 to 2011. Gertner and other legal experts said the program sounds more troubling than recent disclosures that the National Security Agency has been collecting domestic phone records. The NSA effort is geared toward stopping terrorists; the DEA program targets common criminals, primarily drug dealers.

"It is one thing to create special rules for national security," Gertner said. "Ordinary crime is entirely different. It sounds like they are phonying up investigations."

THE SPECIAL OPERATIONS DIVISION

The unit of the DEA that distributes the information is called the Special Operations Division, or SOD. Two dozen partner agencies comprise the unit, including the FBI, CIA, NSA, Internal Revenue Service and the Department of Homeland Security. It was created in 1994 to combat Latin American drug cartels and has grown from several dozen employees to several hundred.

Today, much of the SOD's work is classified, and officials asked that its precise location in Virginia not be revealed. The documents reviewed by Reuters are marked "Law Enforcement Sensitive," a government categorization that is meant to keep them confidential.

"Remember that the utilization of SOD cannot be revealed or discussed in any investigative function," a document presented to agents reads. The document specifically directs agents to omit the SOD's involvement from investigative reports, affidavits, discussions with prosecutors and courtroom testimony. Agents are instructed to then use "normal investigative techniques to recreate the information provided by SOD."

.....SOD'S BIG SUCCESSES

The unit also played a major role in a 2008 DEA sting in Thailand against Russian arms dealer Viktor Bout; he was sentenced in 2011 to 25 years in prison on charges of conspiring to sell weapons to the Colombian rebel group FARC. The SOD also recently coordinated Project Synergy, a crackdown against manufacturers, wholesalers and retailers of synthetic designer drugs that spanned 35 states and resulted in 227 arrests.

Since its inception, the SOD's mandate has expanded to include narco-terrorism, organized crime and gangs. A DEA spokesman declined to comment on the unit's annual budget. A recent LinkedIn posting on the personal page of a senior SOD official estimated it to be $125 million.

Today, the SOD offers at least three services to federal, state and local law enforcement agents: coordinating international investigations such as the Bout case; distributing tips from overseas NSA intercepts, informants, foreign law enforcement partners and domestic wiretaps; and circulating tips from a massive database known as DICE.

The DICE database contains about 1 billion records, the senior DEA officials said. The majority of the records consist of phone log and Internet data gathered legally by the DEA through subpoenas, arrests and search warrants nationwide. Records are kept for about a year and then purged, the DEA officials said.

About 10,000 federal, state and local law enforcement agents have access to the DICE database, records show. They can query it to try to link otherwise disparate clues. Recently, one of the DEA officials said, DICE linked a man who tried to smuggle $100,000 over the U.S. southwest border to a major drug case on the East Coast.

"We use it to connect the dots," the official said. ...

//////

OK so let's get to PROTON, CRISSCROSS, CLEARWATER and Lexis-Nexis. I think this covers a lot of new ground. Hard to say if the DOJ side of the story ties in, but the Lexis-Nexis level is pretty clearly documented already but not well known outside of research circles. Also some of this gets to the SCS - Special Collection Service - which I think would have been part of Snowden's tour of duty in CIA.

SOURCE: http://cryptome.org/2013/08/proton-clearwater-lexis-nexis.htm

18 August 2013

PROTON, CLEARWATER and Lexis-Nexis

A Proton/Crisscross job ad below.


A sends:

PROTON, CLEARWATER and LEXIS-NEXIS

Given the use of constitutionally repulsive practices by the Department of Justice, the Internal Revenue Service and other federal agencies, this information is being made public to educate and inform so they might arm themselves against government intrusion and for attorneys as a backgrounder for future appeals.

I suggest American guerillas seek non-Internet modes of communication. If you think Rex Sherwood was pulled over for not using a turn signal, you are wrong.

I was "read on" the PROTON/CRISSCROSS program in late 2006 and was a frequent user of this system for over a year. As part of my duties, I employed PROTON/CRISSCROSS in HUMINT exploitation role. In the Intelligence Community, PROTON/CRISSCROSS is referred to as PROTON. Unless otherwise specified, the same is true in this report.

PROTON is a storage and analysis system of telecommunications selectors at the TS/SI/FISA/ORCON/NOFORN level of classification and handling. PROTON is the program name as well as the name of the technology. It has been described as "SAP-like", and I suspect that PROTON was once a DEA special program. PROTON is well known in HUMINT and DOJ clandestine law enforcement. It remains the primary, if not fundamental, tool of HUMINT and DOJ law enforcement operations, both of which have considerable overlap in phenomenology and methodology. PROTON carries the FISA caveat because Top Secret FISA collection is contained in PROTON's massive database.

Through my professional associations within the Intelligence Community, I became aware of a Department of Justice (DOJ) system called CLEARWATER. CLEARWATER is similar to PROTON but at the SECRET/NOFORN level of classification and exclusively a DOJ program, where PROTON is CIA, DOJ and DOD. Most DOJ Special Agents and analysts do not have Top Secret clearance. Every informant is run through CLEARWATER, every witness gets vetted through the system.

PROTON and CLEARWATER are not just analytic tools, they provide actionable intelligence and both programs are used everyday for target discovery and development. CLEARWATER practically leads FBI and DEA investigations. PROTON is used throughout HUMINT for asset validation, recruitment, background checks on sources, etc. The FBI and DEA as both law enforcement and intelligence community members have resources of both sides and domestic law enforcement by these agencies is more of a HUMINT operation of the type seen in Afghanistan. Find, Fix, Arrest. PROTON and CLEARWATER work so well that Special Agents and Case Officers can't wait to get data into the system and see how it networks together.

Top Secret and FISA mean NSA sensitive sources and foreign collection. NSA resources are unneeded in America---CALEA and the DOJ have that covered for you under Title III, the Patriot Act and opinion from the federal kangaroo judiciary.

FISA is not only used against terrorists and spies but also private and quasi-government organizations . The most impressive network I ever laid eyes upon was the PROTON derived communications network of the Netherlands and Swiss SWIFT. Allot of target discovery there. It's how you find a needle in a haystack. The U.S. hosts one of three SWIFT secure messaging centers. Well, the NSA and CIA have insured SWIFT is allot less secure. SWIFT is a major communications target and the NSA is deep in that This is a modern take on "follow the money." If Americans are wondering how the IRS found their secret bank accounts..well, here 'ya go.

When I read the description of Drug Enforcement Administrations (DEA) DEA Internet Connectivity Environment (DICE) system: the billions of records, partnership with CIA, NSA and DOD, the need to cover sources at the expense of a fair trail--- it struck me that what was described sounded more like PROTON and/or CLEARWATER.

As I read further, DICE was sounding more like a legitimate DEA program that was being used to provide cover for PROTON and/or CLEARWATER---either intentionally or sacrificially. The early descriptions of DICE present it as an information sharing and collaboration tool through the Internet. The recent public descriptions of DICE are awkward and contrived when compared to past information.

DICE is being used to cover PROTON and/or CLEARWATER.

Properly, CRISSCROSS is the database of telecommunications selectors. Selectors are, in NSA terms, that information that selects a target for analysis, investigation or collection. Telephone numbers, email addresses, hexadecimal addresses from INMARSAT telephones, IMEI---really any telecommunications "number" or "address" a person would have as a means to contact another, are contained in CRISSCROSS.

PROTON is the operating software written in JAVA for cross-platform usability and runs on JWICS for connectivity to CRISSCROSS.

PROTON contains the tools for network analysis and would be familiar to anyone who has experience in undergraduate social network analysis, statistics and data visualization.

CRISSCROSS has an interesting and murky history. As it was explained to me by a PROTON Program Officer, CRISSCROSS was originally a very secret DEA program to provide a repository for DEA collected selectors. It was, by every account, an excellent resource. With the post-911 reorganization of the Intelligence Community, everyone was required to share their resources for the "War of Terror." CRISSCROSS was very successful and well-received and ultimately exceeded DEA capabilities to manage. The CIA took over as executive agent---but CRISSCROSS is shared by the DOD and DOJ in a co-ownership manner.

It's uncertain if PROTON received Special Collection Service (SCS) data when it was a solely DEA activity, but PROTON presently receives SCS collection amounting to about 1 one terabyte monthly, and that's just selectors, not content. PROTON also receives data from Computer Network Exploitation (CNE), by the now famous Tailored Access Office (TAO). Included as well is an enormous repository of Title III data from CALEA enabled domestic collection, FISA and an enormous amount of purchased data from various communications providers like Intellius.

PROTON does not contain content, only selectors for targeting. Consider that in the context of one (1) terabyte of just selectors per month (just from the SCS) for over 10 years. I have no idea how much the TAO provides, however the two biggest contributors to PROTON are the SCS and TAO.

An analyst or law enforcement officer can "run" a selector in PROTON and visualize the social network of correspondents associated with that selector in a visual format. The user can select and display most frequent numbers called or have called, duration of call, and other functions familiar to social network analysis. An analyst may choose to look at the network in terms of who called who: persons of importance typically have allot of people calling them so we can build a network based on that to determine centricity. We can build a network based on call duration, frequency, date---pick a variable. Sometimes it's useful to look at the outliers which may be hang-arounds to some drug trafficking organization. We can task NSA or DOJ for collection on these hang-arounds and begin network deconstruction from the ground up.

These calling networks include family, friends and other non-target persons. Non-target persons, like family members, are very useful in developing the target and as leverage. Non-target communications provide intelligence from things spoken between people in confidence who may not be aware of the targets activities or associations, like the location of a fugitive who has ceased using his known selectors, but communicates with his mother through her known selectors.

Another very useful feature is the Bankswitch function, which allows network discovery by the calling pattern, not necessarily by a selector. Often, groups of U.S. government interest will use a cellphone, then dispose of them , preventing further intelligence collection from that group of cellphones. Bankswitch allows the analyst to quickly rediscover the calling network that has switched phones. Humans typically have some constant behavior in who and how they make their calls and persons. Groups and enterprises not having supplicated to the U.S. government avarice will have a whole additional set of behaviors in who and how they call.

This is highly useful for calling networks that dispose and rotate telephones regularly. A fresh cellphone provides enough of a lead to discover the calling pattern of the whole network based on historical calling records. Both the DEA and FBI have found this useful in their activities in Columbia, Mexico and the United States.

I know for certain PROTON contains communications selectors on American Citizens (AMCITS) since I ran a query on a number using only a Maryland area code and a partial prefix. PROTON returned a huge list of "masked" domestic numbers. An NSA masked number is always domestic and reveals only the area code and prefix with the rest of the number obscured. A PROTON user can email the NSA with a request to unmask the number---it's in the database, but a user has to present some justification for a number to be unmasked. Voice cuts are available through a similar process.

PROTON is really well thought out. Not only does it provide a wealth of network investigative tools, it also allows for the easy introduction of data. Let's say you're a DEA Special Agent surveilling local boat captains as part of OPERATION PANAMA EXPRESS (PANEX) in Barranquilla Columbia---a major Port of Origin for drugs to the U.S. and someone gives you a business card. Just run the number and see if it hits. The Special Agent" can take that card and mail it to the PROTON Program Office (PPO). Scans, cell pictures of the information are also acceptable to ingest.

An FBI Case Officer attending a UAV conference in Las Vegas can take all the "grey literature" and hand that to the PROTON office as well. The numbers find their way into the database The PROTON office will also ingest entire phone books---still popular in some parts of Europe and Asia. They use a method similar to Google books to automatically turn pages and scan data from them.

Anything that contains a selector can go into PROTON. Part of the PROTON program is the resource that provides software engineering to order unordered data and otherwise make raw data ingestible. PROTON users can add and edit PROTON data as well. If a user discovers the identity of a previously unidentified selector, one can edit that record or leave notes for other users.

With PROTON, you can see who's talking to whom in a telecommunications relationship context. How you hit that network is up to you.

Network deconstruction techniques vary throughout the 'Community. Domestically, the DOJ prefers the highly publicized raid with the media providing the entertainment backdrop. The DEA prefers covertness. The DOD prefers a Predator strike. Yes, those drone attacks are network deconstruction techniques and target selection is often facilitated, if not provided, by PROTON.

As stated earlier, CLEARWATER is a SECRET/NOFORN version of PROTON. The DEA red herring called DICE reportedly contained NSA collection which rules-out CLEARWATER (a S//NF system) and highlights PROTON (a TS//SI system) as the source of DICE intelligence.

I'm providing information on both since the government is no longer under constitutional restraint and is illegitimate. Parallel Construction. You fuckers. A cornerstone of American law and western culture sacrificed for the security of the Elites.

With the CALEA requirements, TITLE III collection is very simple affair involving a court order and the Cisco routers which, through CALEA legislation, are engineered for surveillance. Cisco is a very enthusiastic partner to the Intelligence Community---one of those sensitive relationships managed through the NSA Special Source Operations office. The NSA finesses such relationships---with the DOJ, you get a thug in a nice suit and the quiet menace of federal law enforcement. If you think the DOJ is a law enforcement agency, you're stupid. Internal security is DOJ Job #1. As we have seen, the DOJ is maintaining internal security by both legal and extralegal means with the full support of the federal judiciary and the lukewarm animus of the U.S. Congress.

Federal judges and congress persons are largely immune to DOJ surveillance. You are not. The "new" counter-insurgency operations by the government concentrate on a Reasonable Suspicion by persons and groups---not on Probable Cause.

CLEARWATER contains selectors from any number of sources: TITLE III, purchased data from telecommunications data brokers, National Security Letters, subpoenas, technical operations by FBI TACOPS, search warrant, informant production, arrests, detentions. If the DOJ has searched you, arrested you or let you go, count on that data being in CLEARWATER. Did you give the Special Agent your telephone number?

Arresting someone to search them without needing consent or court order is not an unheard of means to get a Person of Interests selectors into CLEARWATER. Something laying openly on your desk? A cell-phone snap and email to the program office. How about those utility bills you throw away without shredding? If you're a Person of Interest, somebody is walking away with your trash.

There is a a real motivation by DOJ Special Agents to get telecommunications selectors into PROTON or CLEARWATER to build the networks for analysis and deconstruction.

CLEARWATER has all the features of PROTON and at least one other---mapping. An FBI Case Officer operating domestically can query say, Lahore Pakistan, and place on a map, those locations in the U.S. where those calls originated or terminate---a choropleth map with colored density clusters, all in a spatial context. With that, the DOJ knows where to focus it's domestic security efforts. A DEA Special Agent can run a selector seized in an amphetamine investigation and, within a few minutes, have the calling network and visualize the correspondents locations on a map. That's how DOJ led task forces show up in your neighborhood.

Watching a OWS protester enter a number into their cell phone is perfectly legal without consent or a warrant and once I get that number, we'll look at that calling network, find the node that is you, and walk that back to that moment we shared under the chestnut tree.

If you're visiting the USA from abroad, you may have your wallet and pocket litter photocopied at secondary screening. Then an email to the National Counterrorism Center (NCTC) Terrorist Identities Datamart Environment (TIDE) office, and from there, a Forward to the PROTON office.

PROTON, CLEARWATER and LEXIS-NEXIS all provide data export into Analyst Notebook file format (and PDF for ease of sharing).

All members of the Intelligence Community have access to LEXIS-NEXIS. LEXIS-NEXIS contains biographic information on most Americans having a driver or occupational license. Your state sells the contents of its drivers license database to companies like LEXIS-NEXIS for a profit. They can do this since that information is considered in the public domain---driving is a privilege and if you don't want to be in database then don't get a drivers license. LEXIS-NEXIS contains other highly personal and granular information depending on which state is providing information. Florida provides pretty much everything it can to LEXIS-NEXIS. Automobile information, luxury water craft, occupational licenses---if you submit information to a state agency, it can end up in LEXIS-NEXIS. All domestic law enforcement has access to LEXIS-NEXIS, its a fundamental investigative tool. IRS, DOJ, Treasury, Local PD, Sheriffs Office all have a LEXIS-NEXIS access or the means to pull data from them.

Law Enforcement Officers can have their data removed from LEXIS-NEXIS. An LAPD and NYPD "spokesperson" informed me that this is the case. Imagine your a citizen in New York and you get surveilled by one of the numerous surveillance technicians the NYPD has fielded since 9-11 , a quick look-up via mobile device or WiFi and they know who you are now.

So, a Special Agent or analyst simply runs the selectors in PROTON and CLEARWATER, then runs those names or other biographic/vital information again in LEXIS-NEXIS, all that data related to the TARGET is exported in Analyst Notebook format, those files are imported into the Analyst Notebook application and...viola!...a relatively complete social network and biographics of the TARGET. That could be you of course.

By Supreme Court decision and other judicial misadventures, LEXIS-NEXIS contains public information and you do not have an expectation of privacy. There is no need for Probable Cause or Reasonable Suspicion because this data is, by judicial opinion, public. Something to think about next time you're at the DMV. Citizens are queried regularly in LEXIS-NEXIS. CLEARWATER and PROTON provides network association and the selectors. A subpoena, NSL or search warrant to the telecommunications provider of that selector gives us names and locations. LEXIS-NEXIS provides Pattern of Life, geolocation and personalia. I was able to see my past three residential addresses, past telephone numbers and identifying information about my previous automobile. LEXIS-NEXIS is coupled to Automatic License Plate Recognition Systems (ALPRS) as well. Who you are, where you were and where you are.

The DOJ and Intelligence Community access LEXIS-NEXIS through a VPN and a proxy (government). A DOD proxy is registered to the Virginia Contracting Office, but it's a non-logging proxy so, good luck in your discovery. LEXIS-NEXIS has no idea of the individual accessing it's database and, according to the spokesperson, does not maintain logs of government clients. A subpoena cannot discover what is not there.

Around 2008, LEXIS-NEXIS purchased Choicepoint to start their new product line. I recall some representative, at a promotional meeting, extolling the virtues of Choicepoint---all the data in a easy to use format. A user of Choicepoint could run a query and not only get biographics and addresses but have that information located on a map or satellite image (by Pinpoint, Inc. or a Google map server). The Choicepoint representative giving the presentation said no Social Security Numbers or drivers license pictures would be included in the database in order to protect the rights of the citizen. Such conceits are good ethics in Washington, D.C.

That said, CLEARWATER and PROTON are not omnipotent. Foreign intelligence organizations use the Internet for covert and clandestine communication without detection and you can as well. Do not believe that the NSA or DOJ is all powerful. They are not and they can be defeated. Of the many systems used by NSA and DOJ, CLEARWATER, PROTON and LEXIS-NEXIS are the most significant from a "boots on the ground" investigative prospective.

There is real concern that PROTON may be to widely known for such a program and efforts are being made to walk it back into a compartment.


A Proton/Crisscross job ad:
http://jobs.cgi.com/job/Hanover-SIGINT-Analyst-Job-MD-21075/1184801/

SIGINT Analyst Job

Date: Aug 14, 2013

Location: Hanover, MD, US
Job Order: J0311-0630 - Permanent Full Time
Title: SIGINT Analyst
Category: Consulting / Business / Functional
City: Hanover, Maryland, United States

Job Description: SIGINT Analyst

CGI Federal is seeking a SIGINT Analyst to work in our Hanover, MD office.

Specific Duties:

Applicants will work as a member of a government-contractor team whose primary focus will be providing support to deployed analysts and software developers.

In this capacity, uses an in-depth knowledge of general communications procedures, traffic analysis and reporting formats and vehicles to produce time-sensitive and event-oriented reports

Provide support to force protection, indications and warning and situational awareness; provides target continuity and mentorship to a junior and rotating workforce; conducts research to answer RFIs and produces working aids to support new tool development.

Must be willing to receive and conduct training on new systems, databases, processes and procedures.

Analyst will be supporting deployed US military troops and must understand the military decision making process and miliary doctrine.

Minimum of five (5) years experience with the military or government agency using the collection management cycle, intelligence cycle, targeting cycle, and the SIGINT intelligence fusion process from tactical to national level required.

Additional Requirements:

Experience with Falconview, Analyst Notebook, Arc View, Arc-GIS, Arc-Editor, AIM, Pathfinder, SEAS, STARLIGHT, GCCS and other current analyst tools.

Active TS/SCI security clearance w/ polygraph required.

Preferred:

Experience with NSANET, RTRG tool suite, Global Reach, Proton/Criss Cross, Broom Stick, CW II, Banyan. Geo Bootcamp and knowledge of ArcGIS a plus.

Preferred experience includes analysis in OIF/OEF, NSA, INSCOM, or ACE At CGI, we're a team of builders. We call our employees members because all who join CGI are building their own company - one that has grown to 71,000 professionals located in more than 40 countries. Founded in 1976, CGI is a leading IT and business process services firm committed to helping clients succeed. We have the global resources, expertise, stability and dedicated professionals needed to achieve results for our clients - and for our members. Come grow with us. Learn more at www.cgi.com.

This is a great opportunity to join a winning team. CGI offers a competitive compensation package with opportunities for growth and professional development. Benefits for full-time, permanent members start on the first day of employment and include a paid time-off program and profit participation and stock purchase plans.

We wish to thank all applicants for their interest and effort in applying for this position, however, only candidates selected for interviews will be contacted.

No unsolicited agency referrals please.

WE ARE AN EQUAL OPPORTUNITY EMPLOYER.

Skills

- Analytical Thinking
- Signal Intelligence (SIGINT)

Reference: 137685

//////

Check out the BOLO - be on the lookout - National Guard civil disturbance training program photos here:North Carolina National Guard Rapid Reaction Force Civil Unrest Training Photos | Public Intelligence. Obviously PROTON, DICE, CRISSCROSS, CLEARWATER style database technology would be useful in composing intelligence

Official description: CHARLOTTE, N.C. – Soldiers of the North Carolina National Guard train for Rapid Reaction Force duty at the Catawba River Pump Station here today. The training scenario tests the Soldiers ability to use nonlethal force to disperse a crowd of aggressors from a water plant. This training prepares the Soldiers to support state and local first responders and county emergency management agencies. The RRF is a quick reaction team that, on order, is deployable anywhere in North Carolina within 24 to 36 hours of a critical event. In times of crisis, the RRF may be ordered by the President of the United States or the Governor of North Carolina in order to augment Federal or State Authorities in response to actions such as a known terrorist attack, civil unrest or a natural and/or man-made disaster. (U.S. Army National Guard photo by Sgt. 1s Class Robert Jordan / released)

nc-rrf-3.jpg nc-rrf-9-1024x724.png nc-rrf-8-1024x708.png

/////

Other targetings: Russia Issues International Travel Advisory to Its Hackers | Threat Level | Wired.com

WaPo/Snowden: U.S. spy agencies mounted 231 offensive cyber-operations in 2011, documents show - The Washington Post

Black Budget semi-surfaces: ‘Black budget’ summary details U.S. spy network’s successes, failures and objectives - The Washington Post

Israel listed as major counterintelligence threat in Black Budget: Leaked documents reveal US sees Israel as a spying threat (Video) - The Hill's Global Affairs

WIRED on cryptology cracking in black budget: New Snowden Leak Reports 'Groundbreaking' NSA Crypto-Cracking | Threat Level | Wired.com

Login Lulz for Snowden in Ars Technica Aug 29th: Sysadmin security fail: NSA finds Snowden hijacked officials’ logins | Ars Technica

.... Leaving it there for now...

Urgent letter from San Quentin hunger striker in medical emergency - one protest demand met by authorities says striker

Hunger strikes are challenging the prison-industrial complex and this particular letter posted hours ago gave me chills.

Via a colleague: "Urgent. From a penpal at San Quentin. The main line is (415) 454-1460."

_____

I hope this letter finds you doing well. This is just a small note to let you know I’m still alive. But on Friday morning at around 12:30 a.m., they found me on the floor unresponsive & a little blue-ish purple. From what the guys here say, the guards opened the door, I fell out and they jumped on me with a shield, cuffed me and took me out. Then drop’d me at the first tier cause their hands slipped, from what they told me. What happened!? Well I remember waking up with a start, shivering, my heart racing and like someone was squeezing my back and that’s it.

The nurses said kidney failure. That I was so dehydrated that my kidneys shut down and I was blue-ish purple cause I almost froze to death. Hyperthermia? Is that how you spell it? Either way, the lack of food caught up to me and so did the water. They put me on IV and warmed up my body with blankets and sent me on my way back to my cell. By 4 a.m. I was back. Only at S.Q. That same day 4 more guys fell out. The nurses said more will follow and they’ll see me again soon too if I don’t start eating. Which I won’t. I’m still sore from the awkward position I was in for hours, still recovering and pissing out this IV shit. The nurses said I was half dead but looked better today. I’ve slept all day and just taking it easy.

There was a negotiation meetin Friday evening where they’re still talking S.T.G. shit and still making promises. But we’re not seeing anything on paper. Oh just one thing was put on paper. They changed the policy for searching us at yard now. When it’s raining they’ll bring us into the building and search us, instead of making us do that on the yard. That was one of our requests. But we said, if they can put that on paper, why not the rest? That’s where we’re at now though.

"Keep calling the Governor's office, for sure, with an extra call to SQ if you can.... Other contacts. Polite but firm, so forth. These folks need hospitalization and decent medical care, immediately."

Warden Kevin Chappell at San Quentin Prison:

phone: 415-455-5000

email: Kevin.Chappell@cdcr.ca.gov

Jean Weiss - Ombudsman

Jean.Weiss@cdcr.ca.gov

(916) 324-5458

CDCR Secretary Jeffrey Beard:

phone: 916-323-6001

fax: 916-442-2637

/////

More info on the California Hunger Strike: See CA Hunger Strike (CAHungerStrike) on Twitter && Solitary Watch ‏ @solitarywatch. General blog: Prisoner Hunger Strike Solidarity | amplifying the voices of CA prisoners on hunger strike

Tom Hayden on how to end California's prison hunger strike - latimes.com

California's Prison Hunger Strike: Where's the Truth? | Politics News | Rolling Stone - Aug 13

A Lesson of the Irish Hunger Strike | Tom Hayden - Aug 15

California prisoners continue hunger strikes - Features - Al Jazeera English - Aug 9

Amnesty International weighs in on California prisons hunger strike | Reuters - July 30

Prisons.org - California Prison Focus

UPDATE: August 16, 2013.

Today well over one hundred men have passed to the 40 day mark.

Over 175 visits to the emergency triage centers at the prisons or visits to nearby hospitals have been reported.

CDCR will not budge--will not negotiate with the prisoners.

Continue to demand humane treatment in California prisons. Call the Governor today!

SPECIAL REPORT: The California Prison Hunger Strike Demands Our Attention - Aug 11. I think based on the letter these are not all the demands at every location, however they seem broadly held as far as one can tell with the State mediating this particular communication situation - indeed one whole point of the State here is to prevent them from communicating, with all the psychological damage that entails.

The prisoners' demands are:

End group punishment and administrative abuse

Abolish the debriefing policy, and modify active/inactive gang status criteria

Comply with the U.S. Commission on Safety and Abuse in America’s Prisons 2006 recommendations regarding an end to long-term solitary confinement

Provide adequate and nutritious food

Expand and provide constructive programming and privileges for indefinite SHU status inmates

What Is Actually Revealed in the California Prisoners Hunger Strike: Responding to Jeffrey Beard's Los Angeles Times Op-ed - by Revolutionary Communist Party (source)

Day 36 of California Hunger Strike: Hundreds Still Protesting Isolation Policies - Solitary Watch

San Francisco Bay View » Corcoran SHU hunger strike: The riot team was ready for full-scale war - July 27 2013 letter from inmate Jabari Scott at Corcoran State Prison

Hunger-striking California inmate on 27 years in solitary: ‘Every minute has been torturous to my mind and body’ | The Raw Story - August 9th (source Guardian)

No matter what one has done in life, it is never too late to make a statement about human decency & inhuman treatment. Good luck to them and may the walls come tumbling down.

Alcohol comes to Pine Ridge reservation after White Clay battle

It is disappointing to hear that Pine Ridge Reservation voted to resume selling alcohol after so many had fought against it - and this is no doubt pleasant news for the people that profit from the war on drugs, like alcohol companies. I also just saw ads about four new bars opening at Mystic Lake here in Minnesota.

It is too bad, unfortunately the American Indians are only one example of how chemical dependency is fostered by corporate America through billions of dollars in advertising.... Another massive subsidy, the stadiums hosting booze ads, will be touched on shortly.

In late June: Oglala Lakota Nation President VS Nebraska State Police June 17, 2013 - YouTube

Breaking News: Oglala Sioux Tribe President Arrested During Protest in White Clay | Earth First! Newswire

Oglala Sioux President Arrested at Whiteclay Protest - ICTMN.com

A Dry Reservation Clashes With Its Liquor Store Neighbors : NPR

Now: Pine Ridge Reservation Votes to End Alcohol Ban - NYTimes.com: "Chief Duke said that he expected the easier availability of alcohol to lead to a sharp rise in violence, which will challenge a department whose 37 officers are responsible for patrolling an area larger than Rhode Island and Delaware combined.... Chief Duke said he finally gave up alcohol when he turned 31. But alcohol’s ill fortune caught up to some members of his family. Two of his daughters, he said, were killed in drunken-driving accidents in the 1990s."

Also: Pine Ridge Reservation Lifts Century-Old Alcohol Ban : The Two-Way : NPR // It's official: Pine Ridge Reservation legalizes alcohol in historic referendum

//////

Sarcasm memes are emerging on Minneapolis internets from Minneapolis AIM:
pine-ridge.jpg

pine-ridge2.jpg pine-ridge3.jpg

/////

Via Tasunke Wakan:

"If the People Who voted yes on the Oglala Homelands to Legalize alcohol sales win the Ethnic cleansing by the Wasicu has succeeded. The Wasicu no longer needs to come and kill us with his Armies he now has the mni sica (bad water) to do his work for him. More people will now die from from alcohol related deaths and illnesses. Drunk drivers will kill innocent people on the highways and Sexual and physical abuse will increase, along with the crime rate. Also elderly abuse and child abuse along with suicides will increase. Read Black Elk's vision in the book Black Elk Speaks he fortells of this time and how the dark cloud covered the people. That time is now!!!!!! But in the end only the people who follow the original ways will survive according to his vision."

via AIM of Twin Cities & AIM Patrol of Minneapolis - Now What To Do With All The Millions In Alcohol... - AIM of Twin Cities & AIM Patrol of Minneapolis: "This was posted from AIM Grassroots."

Now What To Do With All The Millions In Alcohol Money On Pine Ridge

By Scott Barta
Just like most of america, the majority of users of alcohol on the oglala Lakota "Sioux" Pine Ridge reservation suffered tragic childhood trauma and only use alcohol to numb their pain, their denial, their fear of exposure - whether raped, beaten, or verbally abused by parents/grandparents/brothers/uncles/neighbors.
What to do now?
Each of the nine districts will now get liquor stores no doubt, regulated by a tribal department. This will create jobs temporary employment for construction workers who must build the facilitie and provide jobs for all the new employees that must be hired by the tribe to run the stores.
What is needed most on Pine Ridge?
Currently, a plague is destroying american Indian reservations, and Pine Ridge is no different then the rest. Young men between the ages of 18 and 36 are being ignored and cast away by the tribes - often thrown away into the court and jail systems.
These 18-36 year old males are being denied their right to manhood - providing for themselves and their families, usually by possessive mothers/grandmothers who continue to enable and cripple these young men. In effect, they refuse to cut the embilical cord or ween the child from the teet - under the excuse of "compassion" and "generousity".
The worst thing for a man is thinking and feeling that he is inadequate, useless, unable to provide - it tears at the heart. He will not admit it and not ask for help, buyt he will ache inside until his next drink, his next drug. Often they lash out in macho attempts (gang, fighting, etc.) to try to cover thier inadequacies which compounds the problems.
18-36 year old males are allowed to stay at mom's or grandma's house - often not even required to wash a single dish or take out a bag of trash. The boys have girlfriends, all hickey-ed-up, shacking up with them, getting them pregnant; then pretty soon they break-up and then you have single moms raising unwanted kids.
18-36ers use moms/grandma's car, go drinking/drugging, then wreck the car, get thrown in jail - then mom/grandma BAIL THEM OUT for $400 (so much for groceries and bill-paying that week), all so they can come back and flop at the house until their next dramatic cry for help goes unanswered.
WELL IT IS TIME TO QUIT ENABLING THE CRIPPLING OF THE YOUNG LAKOTA MEN.
This alcohol profits, instead of going to all the tribal council members for new pick-ups, must go to training camps in each district for all 18-36 year olds who are not working full time and not living on their own. Sales profits can be used to hire builders to construct small cabins or erect tents/Tipis in a "Manhood Training Circle" where the boys stay, eat and live communally - available for any work delegated to them. "Manhood Training Circle" Staff must be hired to coordinate who comes in requesting assistance from the boys for building garages, bailing hay, basic plumbing/electrical jobs, hauling jobs, etc.
Experts can come in and give job/employment trainings, spiritual insight, wisdom and encouragement throughout the day to the campers - all guiding them to becoming providers for their nation.
IT IS NOT TOO LATE TO FIX THE NATION, it is not too late to save our young men.

Anyway will leave it there for now, but also add info on the lawfulness of the subsidized hub of booze advertising, the quasi-illegal Minneapolis Vikings stadium...

FinCEN floats new Bitcoin related currency regulation advisory as criminal bankster operations sack depositors in Cyprus

UPDATE 3.28 - BITCOIN SURGES TO $92 - see http://www.forbes.com/sites/jonmatonis/2013/03/24/cyprus-goes-cashless-t...
for notes on Bitcoin's surge in popularity as a refuge from the Looting, and more context to the FinCEN stuff as well.

The FinCEN structure is one of those good at gracefully failing to say much about the huge volumes of drug money circulating in the Federal Reserve System. They are now setting their eyes on extending the Ontology of Fail into Bitcoin.

Since the Cyprus looting political situation has slid forward, Bitcoin apps have been going viral in Europe - particularly in the small Spanish iOS market. For some unclear reason Bitcoin's value has been going parabolic since the start of 2013.

Good intro, suggests the rideup not just because of Cyprus: Bitcoin bubble or new virtual currency? | | MacroBusiness

Bitcoin interest spikes in Spain as Cyprus financial crisis grows (Wired UK)

Spain turns to Bitcoin, prompting incoherent discussion on Today

Bitcoin analysis: Cyprus crisis increases virtual currency interest | BGR

Bitcoin apps soar in Spain – will the Cyprus shocker boost virtual currencies? - Yahoo! News

BREAKING: In Response To Building Cyprus Panic - BITCOIN HITS NEW ALL-TIME HIGH OF $50....er, $52, $54, $55 - Max Keiser // Bitcoin-Related Apps Spike In Spain Over Weekend, Alongside Cyprus

Bitcoin getting a boost from euro crisis - FRANCE 24

BrianLehrer.tv: Saving the Kimani Grays - YouTube & bookmark'd to an interview Erik Voorhees and Marc Hochstein. Includes the quickie intro video for Bitcoin.

For updates: Bitcoin Watch

The rideup from ~ $47/Bitcoin to a pretty solid $64-72 range, likely due to Cyprus, shows that even if things cool off, Bitcoin demand definitely has reached a new audience.

This chart is from Mt. Gox, the largest Bitcoin exchange site.

chart.png

Here is the Euro chart, perhaps more relevant.

201303250051.jpg

Needless to say, the market spike has made Bitcoin mining quite a bit more profitable than only a few weeks ago.

Welcome To FinCEN.gov - FinCEN’s mission is to safeguard the financial system from illicit use and combat money laundering and promote national security through the collection, analysis, and dissemination of financial intelligence and strategic use of financial authorities.

FinCen Regulation of BitCoin and Virtual Currency

20 March 2013

A sends:

http://www.fincen.gov/statutes_regs/guidance/html/FIN-2013-G001.html

http://www.fincen.gov/statutes_regs/guidance/pdf/FIN-2013-G001.pdf

Guidance

FIN-2013-G001

Issued:

March 18, 2013

Subject:

Application of FinCEN's Regulations to Persons Administering, Exchanging, or Using Virtual Currencies

            The Financial Crimes Enforcement Network ("FinCEN") is issuing this interpretive guidance to clarify the applicability of the regulations implementing the Bank Secrecy Act ("BSA") to persons creating, obtaining, distributing, exchanging, accepting, or transmitting virtual currencies.1 Such persons are referred to in this guidance as "users," "administrators," and "exchangers," all as defined below.2 A user of virtual currency is not an MSB under FinCEN's regulations and therefore is not subject to MSB registration, reporting, and recordkeeping regulations. However, an administrator or exchanger is an MSB under FinCEN's regulations, specifically, a money transmitter, unless a limitation to or exemption from the definition applies to the person. An administrator or exchanger is not a provider or seller of prepaid access, or a dealer in foreign exchange, under FinCEN's regulations.

Currency vs. Virtual Currency

            FinCEN's regulations define currency (also referred to as "real" currency) as "the coin and paper money of the United States or of any other country that [i] is designated as legal tender and that [ii] circulates and [iii] is customarily used and accepted as a medium of exchange in the country of issuance."3 In contrast to real currency, "virtual" currency is a medium of exchange that operates like a currency in some environments, but does not have all the attributes of real currency. In particular, virtual currency does not have legal tender status in any jurisdiction. This guidance addresses "convertible" virtual currency. This type of virtual currency either has an equivalent value in real currency, or acts as a substitute for real currency.

Background

            On July 21, 2011, FinCEN published a Final Rule amending definitions and other regulations relating to money services businesses ("MSBs").4 Among other things, the MSB Rule amends the definitions of dealers in foreign exchange (formerly referred to as "currency dealers and exchangers") and money transmitters. On July 29, 2011, FinCEN published a Final Rule on Definitions and Other Regulations Relating to Prepaid Access (the "Prepaid Access Rule").5 This guidance explains the regulatory treatment under these definitions of persons engaged in virtual currency transactions.

Definitions of User, Exchanger, and Administrator

            This guidance refers to the participants in generic virtual currency arrangements, using the terms "user," "exchanger," and "administrator."6 A user is a person that obtains virtual currency to purchase goods or services.7 An exchanger is a person engaged as a business in the exchange of virtual currency for real currency, funds, or other virtual currency. An administrator is a person engaged as a business in issuing (putting into circulation) a virtual currency, and who has the authority to redeem (to withdraw from circulation) such virtual currency.

Users of Virtual Currency

            A user who obtains convertible virtual currency and uses it to purchase real or virtual goods or services is not an MSB under FinCEN's regulations.8 Such activity, in and of itself, does not fit within the definition of "money transmission services" and therefore is not subject to FinCEN's registration, reporting, and recordkeeping regulations for MSBs.9

Administrators and Exchangers of Virtual Currency

            An administrator or exchanger that (1) accepts and transmits a convertible virtual currency or (2) buys or sells convertible virtual currency for any reason is a money transmitter under FinCEN's regulations, unless a limitation to or exemption from the definition applies to the person.10 FinCEN's regulations define the term "money transmitter" as a person that provides money transmission services, or any other person engaged in the transfer of funds. The term "money transmission services" means "the acceptance of currency, funds, or other value that substitutes for currency from one person and the transmission of currency, funds, or other value that substitutes for currency to another location or person by any means."11

            The definition of a money transmitter does not differentiate between real currencies and convertible virtual currencies. Accepting and transmitting anything of value that substitutes for currency makes a person a money transmitter under the regulations implementing the BSA.12 FinCEN has reviewed different activities involving virtual currency and has made determinations regarding the appropriate regulatory treatment of administrators and exchangers under three scenarios: brokers and dealers of e-currencies and e-precious metals; centralized convertible virtual currencies; and de-centralized convertible virtual currencies.

            a. E-Currencies and E-Precious Metals

            The first type of activity involves electronic trading in e-currencies or e-precious metals.13 In 2008, FinCEN issued guidance stating that as long as a broker or dealer in real currency or other commodities accepts and transmits funds solely for the purpose of effecting a bona fide purchase or sale of the real currency or other commodities for or with a customer, such person is not acting as a money transmitter under the regulations.14

            However, if the broker or dealer transfers funds between a customer and a third party that is not part of the currency or commodity transaction, such transmission of funds is no longer a fundamental element of the actual transaction necessary to execute the contract for the purchase or sale of the currency or the other commodity. This scenario is, therefore, money transmission.15 Examples include, in part, (1) the transfer of funds between a customer and a third party by permitting a third party to fund a customer's account; (2) the transfer of value from a customer's currency or commodity position to the account of another customer; or (3) the closing out of a customer's currency or commodity position, with a transfer of proceeds to a third party. Since the definition of a money transmitter does not differentiate between real currencies and convertible virtual currencies, the same rules apply to brokers and dealers of e-currency and e-precious metals.

            b. Centralized Virtual Currencies

            The second type of activity involves a convertible virtual currency that has a centralized repository. The administrator of that repository will be a money transmitter to the extent that it allows transfers of value between persons or from one location to another. This conclusion applies, whether the value is denominated in a real currency or a convertible virtual currency. In addition, any exchanger that uses its access to the convertible virtual currency services provided by the administrator to accept and transmit the convertible virtual currency on behalf of others, including transfers intended to pay a third party for virtual goods and services, is also a money transmitter.

            FinCEN understands that the exchanger's activities may take one of two forms. The first form involves an exchanger (acting as a "seller" of the convertible virtual currency) that accepts real currency or its equivalent from a user (the "purchaser") and transmits the value of that real currency to fund the user's convertible virtual currency account with the administrator. Under FinCEN's regulations, sending "value that substitutes for currency" to another person or to another location constitutes money transmission, unless a limitation to or exemption from the definition applies.16 This circumstance constitutes transmission to another location, namely from the user's account at one location (e.g., a user's real currency account at a bank) to the user's convertible virtual currency account with the administrator. It might be argued that the exchanger is entitled to the exemption from the definition of "money transmitter" for persons involved in the sale of goods or the provision of services. Under such an argument, one might assert that the exchanger is merely providing the service of connecting the user to the administrator and that the transmission of value is integral to this service. However, this exemption does not apply when the only services being provided are money transmission services.17

            The second form involves a de facto sale of convertible virtual currency that is not completely transparent. The exchanger accepts currency or its equivalent from a user and privately credits the user with an appropriate portion of the exchanger's own convertible virtual currency held with the administrator of the repository. The exchanger then transmits that internally credited value to third parties at the user's direction. This constitutes transmission to another person, namely each third party to which transmissions are made at the user's direction. To the extent that the convertible virtual currency is generally understood as a substitute for real currencies, transmitting the convertible virtual currency at the direction and for the benefit of the user constitutes money transmission on the part of the exchanger.

            c. De-Centralized Virtual Currencies

            A final type of convertible virtual currency activity involves a de-centralized convertible virtual currency (1) that has no central repository and no single administrator, and (2) that persons may obtain by their own computing or manufacturing effort.

            A person that creates units of this convertible virtual currency and uses it to purchase real or virtual goods and services is a user of the convertible virtual currency and not subject to regulation as a money transmitter. By contrast, a person that creates units of convertible virtual currency and sells those units to another person for real currency or its equivalent is engaged in transmission to another location and is a money transmitter. In addition, a person is an exchanger and a money transmitter if the person accepts such de-centralized convertible virtual currency from one person and transmits it to another person as part of the acceptance and transfer of currency, funds, or other value that substitutes for currency.

Providers and Sellers of Prepaid Access

            A person's acceptance and/or transmission of convertible virtual currency cannot be characterized as providing or selling prepaid access because prepaid access is limited to real currencies. 18

Dealers in Foreign Exchange

            A person must exchange the currency of two or more countries to be considered a dealer in foreign exchange.19 Virtual currency does not meet the criteria to be considered "currency" under the BSA, because it is not legal tender. Therefore, a person who accepts real currency in exchange for virtual currency, or vice versa, is not a dealer in foreign exchange under FinCEN's regulations.

* * * * *

            Financial institutions with questions about this guidance or other matters related to compliance with the implementing regulations of the BSA may contact FinCEN's Regulatory Helpline at (800) 949-2732.

1 FinCEN is issuing this guidance under its authority to administer the Bank Secrecy Act. See Treasury Order 180-01 (March 24, 2003). This guidance explains only how FinCEN characterizes certain activities involving virtual currencies under the Bank Secrecy Act and FinCEN regulations. It should not be interpreted as a statement by FinCEN about the extent to which those activities comport with other federal or state statutes, rules, regulations, or orders.

2 FinCEN's regulations define "person" as "an individual, a corporation, a partnership, a trust or estate, a joint stock company, an association, a syndicate, joint venture, or other unincorporated organization or group, an Indian Tribe (as that term is defined in the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act), and all entities cognizable as legal personalities." 31 CFR § 1010.100(mm).

3 31 CFR § 1010.100(m).

4 Bank Secrecy Act Regulations - Definitions and Other Regulations Relating to Money Services Businesses, 76 FR 43585 (July 21, 2011) (the "MSB Rule"). This defines an MSB as "a person wherever located doing business, whether or not on a regular basis or as an organized or licensed business concern, wholly or in substantial part within the United States, in one or more of the capacities listed in paragraphs (ff)(1) through (ff)(7) of this section. This includes but is not limited to maintenance of any agent, agency, branch, or office within the United States." 31 CFR § 1010.100(ff).

5 Final Rule - Definitions and Other Regulations Relating to Prepaid Access, 76 FR 45403 (July 29, 2011),

6 These terms are used for the exclusive purpose of this regulatory guidance. Depending on the type and combination of a person's activities, one person may be acting in more than one of these capacities.

7 How a person engages in "obtaining" a virtual currency may be described using any number of other terms, such as "earning," "harvesting," "mining," "creating," "auto-generating," "manufacturing," or "purchasing," depending on the details of the specific virtual currency model involved. For purposes of this guidance, the label applied to a particular process of obtaining a virtual currency is not material to the legal characterization under the BSA of the process or of the person engaging in the process.

8 As noted above, this should not be interpreted as a statement about the extent to which the user's activities comport with other federal or state statutes, rules, regulations, or orders. For example, the activity may still be subject to abuse in the form of trade-based money laundering or terrorist financing. The activity may follow the same patterns of behavior observed in the "real" economy with respect to the purchase of "real" goods and services, such as systematic over- or under-invoicing or inflated transaction fees or commissions.

9 31 CFR § 1010.100(ff)(1-7).

10 FinCEN's regulations provide that whether a person is a money transmitter is a matter of facts and circumstances. The regulations identify six circumstances under which a person is not a money transmitter, despite accepting and transmitting currency, funds, or value that substitutes for currency. 31 CFR § 1010.100(ff)(5)(ii)(A)-(F).

11 31 CFR § 1010.100(ff)(5)(i)(A).

12 Ibid.

13 Typically, this involves the broker or dealer electronically distributing digital certificates of ownership of real currencies or precious metals, with the digital certificate being the virtual currency. However, the same conclusions would apply in the case of the broker or dealer issuing paper ownership certificates or manifesting customer ownership or control of real currencies or commodities in an account statement or any other form. These conclusions would also apply in the case of a broker or dealer in commodities other than real currencies or precious metals. A broker or dealer of e-currencies or e-precious metals that engages in money transmission could be either an administrator or exchanger depending on its business model.

14 Application of the Definition of Money Transmitter to Brokers and Dealers in Currency and other Commodities, FIN-2008-G008, Sept. 10, 2008. The guidance also notes that the definition of money transmitter excludes any person, such as a futures commission merchant, that is "registered with, and regulated or examined by…the Commodity Futures Trading Commission."

15 In 2011, FinCEN amended the definition of money transmitter. The 2008 guidance, however, was primarily concerned with the core elements of the definition - accepting and transmitting currency or value - and the exemption for acceptance and transmission integral to another transaction not involving money transmission. The 2011 amendments have not materially changed these aspects of the definition.
16 See footnote 11 and adjacent text.

17 31 CFR § 1010.100(ff)(5)(ii)(F).

18 This is true even if the person holds the value accepted for a period of time before transmitting some or all of that value at the direction of the person from whom the value was originally accepted. FinCEN's regulations define "prepaid access" as "access to funds or the value of funds that have been paid in advance and can be retrieved or transferred at some point in the future through an electronic device or vehicle, such as a card, code, electronic serial number, mobile identification number, or personal identification number." 31 CFR § 1010.100(ww). Thus, "prepaid access" under FinCEN's regulations is limited to "access to funds or the value of funds." If FinCEN had intended prepaid access to cover funds denominated in a virtual currency or something else that substitutes for real currency, it would have used language in the definition of prepaid access like that in the definition of money transmission, which expressly includes the acceptance and transmission of "other value that substitutes for currency." 31 CFR § 1010.100(ff)(5)(i) .

19 FinCEN defines a "dealer in foreign exchange" as a "person that accepts the currency, or other monetary instruments, funds, or other instruments denominated in the currency, of one or more countries in exchange for the currency, or other monetary instruments, funds, or other instruments denominated in the currency, of one or more other countries in an amount greater than $1,000 for any other person on any day in one or more transactions, whether or not for same-day delivery." 31 CFR § 1010.100(ff)(1).

12 [sic] As our response is not in the form of an administrative ruling, the substance of this letter should not be considered determinative in any state or federal investigation, litigation, grand jury proceeding, or proceeding before any other governmental body.

//////////////

I thought this dubious speech was kind of interesting. Moar Fear of Bitcoin!!

ASSOCIATION OF CERTIFIED ANTI-MONEY LAUNDERING SPECIALISTS (ACAMS) 18TH ANNUAL INTERNATIONAL AML AND FINANCIAL CRIME CONFERENCE

REMARKS OF JENNIFER SHASKY CALVERY
DIRECTOR
FINANCIAL CRIMES ENFORCEMENT NETWORK
ASSOCIATION OF CERTIFIED ANTI-MONEY LAUNDERING SPECIALISTS (ACAMS)
18TH ANNUAL INTERNATIONAL AML AND FINANCIAL CRIME CONFERENCE
MARCH 19, 2013
HOLLYWOOD, FL

          Good morning. I want to start by thanking our hosts, THE ASSOCIATION OF CERTIFIED ANTI-MONEY LAUNDERING SPECIALISTS, for the opportunity to join you at this year's conference.

          Some of you may have heard me speak recently about FinCEN's broad mission, and how important it is for us to build strong public-private partnerships for us to achieve success. I cannot emphasize this fact enough. Our nation's financial institutions play a vital role in our efforts to safeguard the financial system from illicit use, combat money laundering, and promote national security. And we do this through the collection, analysis, and dissemination of financial intelligence and strategic use of our financial authorities.

          FinCEN depends on the information financial institutions provide to us, and today I'd like to focus on what our analysts do with that information. FinCEN is a leader in the analysis of Bank Secrecy Act (BSA) data and financial intelligence. Our advanced analytic tools and highly skilled analysts play a unique role in analyzing and integrating BSA data and other information to accomplish three ends: (1) map illicit finance networks; (2) identify compromised financial institutions and jurisdictions; and (3) understand the current methods and schemes for illicit finance. These three key pieces of analysis are critical to enable our stakeholders - law enforcement, regulators, foreign partners, and industry - to take action against money laundering and terrorist financing.

          FinCEN's analysis depends primarily on the excellent information you provide - it is the baseline from which our analysts work. During my time at FinCEN, I have been continually impressed by the exceptionally high caliber of FinCEN's analytical team. What our analysts do now - and do very well - is look across that data to find interconnections to support ongoing law enforcement cases, to find trends and patterns within that data, and to understand the overall changes and shifts within it. They will also combine those findings with other information sources, such as law enforcement data or publicly available data, and enhance the picture.

          Where our analysts are going - and we're not there yet, but we are on the cusp of these capabilities - is to take our analysis to a whole new level. Currently, we are capable of dissecting law enforcement and BSA information to identify a specific methodology for illicit finance in a particular segment of the financial industry related to a particular type of crime. We are also capable of using such information to identify entirely new and unknown bad actors engaged in similar activity in other parts of the country. However, right now this is long and arduous work as analysts sift through hundreds and sometimes thousands of reports. Very soon, new capacities made possible by our internal technology modernization, will allow our analysts to deal with such data sets to find leads in a fraction of the time previously necessary. Very soon, we will be able to point law enforcement and other stakeholders precisely to where they should be looking. Our analysts, working hand-in-hand with our superb technology team, are now putting these new capacities into place.

          FinCEN does this analysis well now - and having seen the initial results from our new capabilities, I am excited about where we are headed. I am committed to making this a central role for FinCEN in the 21st Century. So today, I'd like to talk to you about some of the work we are doing and where our cutting-edge analytical efforts are taking us as we seek to remain out in front of emerging payment systems, identify and track third party money launderers, and uncover trends and patterns in the BSA data.

Emerging Payment Systems

          I'd like to begin today by discussing how FinCEN's analysts are working hard to stay ahead of the curve in understanding emerging payment systems and related financial flows and vulnerabilities and to put that information into the hands of those customers who need it most.

          As we all know, during the past decade, the development of new market space and new types of payment systems have emerged as alternatives to traditional mechanisms for conducting financial transactions, allowing developing countries to reach beyond underdeveloped infrastructure and reach those populations who previously had no access to banking services. For consumers and businesses alike, the development and proliferation of these systems are a significant continuing source of positive impact on global commerce.

          These new systems have also expanded the boundaries of "money transmission" as more sophisticated payment systems have become available. And the inherent added complexity of these systems opens them to potential misuse by criminals.

          FinCEN's analysts are continually working to understand the schemes and methods used to exploit emerging payment methods for money laundering and terrorist financing, and to develop related guidance for law enforcement. This guidance provides law enforcement with information on key sectors' operations, recordkeeping practices, and efforts to identify and counter vulnerabilities.

          Partnership is key. As our analysts develop their understanding of these new systems, they are significantly aided by working directly with the financial industry. This partnership enables them to better follow financial trails and realistically understand financial mechanisms.

          For instance, FinCEN's analysts are working to finalize a bulletin that will explore the relatively new payment technology of digital currency systems. FinCEN's bulletin will help "de-mystify" the digital currency realm by explaining to the broader law enforcement community how these systems work. The bulletin will also address the role of traditional financial institutions as intermediaries.

          We're viewing our analytic work in this space as an important part of an ongoing conversation between industry and law enforcement. FinCEN is dedicated to learning more about digital currency systems, along with other emerging mechanisms, to protect those systems from abuse and to aid law enforcement in ensuring that they are getting the leads and information they need to prosecute the criminal actors. As our knowledge base develops, in concert with you, we will look to leverage our new capabilities to identify trends and patterns among the interconnection points of the traditional financial sector and these new payment systems.

          To date, FinCEN's analysts have explored and produced reference products for law enforcement on many traditional and emerging payment systems. These include: cross border funds transfers and correspondent accounts, money transmitters, online payment systems, prepaid cards, and mobile payments. FinCEN's analysts then follow up this work by providing in-person analysis and training to thousands of investigators each year.

          In addition to developing products to help law enforcement follow the financial trails of emerging payments methods, FinCEN also develops guidance for the financial industry to clarify their regulatory responsibilities as they relate to emerging areas.

          In fact, just yesterday, FinCEN issued interpretive guidance to clarify the applicability of BSA regulations to virtual currencies. The guidance responds to questions raised by financial institutions, law enforcement, and regulators concerning the regulatory treatment of persons who use virtual currencies or make a business of exchanging, accepting, and transmitting them.

          FinCEN's rules define certain businesses or individuals as money services businesses (MSBs) depending on the nature of their financial activities. MSBs have registration requirements and a range of anti-money laundering, recordkeeping, and reporting responsibilities under FinCEN's regulations. The guidance considers the use of virtual currencies from the perspective of several categories within FinCEN's definition of MSBs.

          The guidance explains how FinCEN's "money transmitter" definition applies to certain exchangers and system administrators of virtual currencies depending on the facts and circumstances of that activity. Those who use virtual currencies exclusively for common personal transactions like receiving payments for services or buying goods online are not affected by this guidance. Those who are intermediaries in the transfer of virtual currencies from one person to another person, or to another location, are money transmitters that must register with FinCEN as MSBs unless an exception applies. Some virtual currency exchangers are already registered with FinCEN as MSBs, though not necessarily as money transmitters. The guidance clarifies definitions and expectations to ensure that businesses engaged in similar activities are aware of their regulatory responsibilities.

Third Party Money Launderers

          Analysts at FinCEN work on the front lines with law enforcement to help address head-on some of the U.S. government's highest investigative priorities. Healthcare fraud and tax fraud (by identity theft) are both serious and growing drains on U.S. government programs, with losses estimated in the hundreds of billions of dollars.

          To combat these serious and growing frauds, FinCEN has partnered with the Department of Justice, the Internal Revenue Service, and officials within the Department of Health and Human Services to provide targeted analysis of individuals and organizations engaged in fraud. In this effort, FinCEN has to date analyzed more than 270,000 BSA filings in support of more than 300 healthcare fraud investigations.

          FinCEN's mapping of the illicit finance networks used to move such fraud proceeds revealed that check cashers are a key node. They are often used to cash out fraudulent healthcare claims and fraudulent tax returns. While we cannot determine what percentage of the overall illicit proceeds pass through complicit check cashers, we assess that such third-party money launderers comprise a crucial link in the movement of fraudulent proceeds by significant organized criminal actors.

          But here is where FinCEN's analysts have taken their work to the next level. In mapping these networks, FinCEN has also uncovered distinct and unique trends concerning the laundering of fraud proceeds through check cashers. Illegal proceeds from healthcare fraud and tax return fraud by identity theft are moved through the U.S. financial system in identifiable ways, leading FinCEN to identify markers of these transactions.

          FinCEN's review of suspicious activity reports related to these cases reveals several indicators of money laundering in multiple transactional models. Often these transactions involved a third party closely linked to a check casher. FinCEN determined that many of these third parties received ACH credits from Medicare, Medicaid, or private insurance companies.

          FinCEN analysts continue to provide ongoing support to investigations into laundering healthcare and tax fraud proceeds. And we will leverage our analytic findings to better inform industry of key indicators to improve their awareness and enhance BSA filings received on these actors. Our analysts are committed to proactively identifying financial institutions involved in the laundering of proceeds of frauds against the U.S. government. We believe that using this information will be key to furthering both criminal and civil enforcement actions, and preventing such fraudulent activity in the future.

Uncovering Trends and Patterns

          In addition to providing case support, some of you may know that FinCEN has, for many years, carried out trends and pattern analyses of the information contained in the millions of SARs and CTRs that financial institutions send to FinCEN annually. For example, FinCEN studies the BSA records filed on U.S. dollar and foreign currency movement and transactions associated with Mexico and other foreign jurisdictions. These high level analyses aid in detection of illicit financial activity of specific targeted groups, such as Mexican drug trafficking organizations and other transnational criminal organizations operating in the United States and elsewhere.

          For example, our advanced data matching algorithms have allowed us to increase match rates between CMIRs, CTRs, and SARs by over 50 percent in some jurisdictions. This gives us insight into dollar flow from a foreign jurisdiction to the point the dollars are deposited into a U.S. bank, from which we can work to ultimately identify the foreign beneficiary of a wire emanating from the account.

          In another example, analysts have developed a product that allows investigators to review, evaluate, and compare the transactional and aggregate remittance activity of MSB agents using various "red flag" indicators to assist in the identification of agents acting as third party money launderers.

Advanced Analytics

          Naturally, FinCEN's ability to conduct this kind of complex analysis would be impossible without the BSA data financial institutions provide.

          There are also technical challenges to producing timely, cogent, and actionable intelligence products, useful to both our policy leaders and to field personnel. As I noted, filing protocols and the data within FinCEN reports vary from form to form, particularly with respect to those forms not filed strictly by financial institutions, such as the CMIR and Form 8300. Because of these variances, FinCEN analysts are challenged to find innovative solutions to match and fuse data as part of their mapping of illicit finance networks, identification of compromised financial institutions and jurisdictions, and understanding of schemes and methods for illicit finance.

          In the very recent past, our analysts often needed to develop ad hoc tools to help analyze the data because our technical backbone was unable to sufficiently support the layers of tasks required to query, download, integrate, sort, connect, and chart the data.

          Last fall, FinCEN began rolling out a key component in our IT Modernization Program to improve upon our ability to conduct analysis and make the BSA data available to a large number of federal and state agencies, including law enforcement and regulators. FinCEN Query allows users to easily access, query, and analyze 11 years of BSA data; apply filters to narrow search results; and utilize enhanced data capabilities. Our users are now able to look at the information more comprehensively, and we are excited to work with them in making sure that your filings become more valuable than ever before in this new system.

          To give you an idea of the value of the information your institutions provide, in the months since FinCEN Query went live last September, there have been over 1.1 million queries of the BSA data by more than 6,400 users. This past Wednesday alone, there were over 20,000 queries of the BSA data through FinCEN Query.

          With our technology advancements, we are now getting closer to being able to leverage predictive analytics to take our work even further. This will provide us with the ability to work with our law enforcement partners, review their top completed investigations, understand the money laundering indicators present in our data, parse through the existing BSA forms, and then develop automated business rules that will allow us to provide agencies with new leads indicative of similar illicit activity elsewhere.

          For example, FinCEN is working towards developing business rules based on information provided by our law enforcement and regulatory partners. Our goal is to dive deeper into aggregated regional and state level data to extract underlying drivers and trends between and among regions. We are doing this by automating the detection of regions and industries with significant changes, reviewing BSA records, and drilling down to understand which financial institutions are on the front lines of seeing changes in trends and patterns.

          Moving forward, we expect to use the strategic application of business rules on the data industry provides to not only detect, but also to "predict" where certain types of money laundering, such as the placement of dollars in connection with trade-based money laundering activities, might be manifested.

          This type of predictive analysis will significantly improve our intelligence and enforcement efforts by allowing us to focus on those vulnerable regions or financial sectors where money laundering or financial crimes are most prevalent. Furthermore, it will allow us to provide new leads to law enforcement, alert our regulatory partners, and develop "red flags" for industry so we can provide feedback on the kind of information that would be helpful in their SAR reporting.

          We are beginning to touch the very early parts of this capability; we are very excited to be heading in this direction and I greatly look forward to seeing the products when we are able to reach full implementation.

          In another aspect of our modernization, financial institutions will be required to utilize the new FinCEN reports, including CTRs and SARs, starting April 1, 2013. The new FinCEN reports were specifically developed to work with the new FinCEN Query system that we just rolled out, and these new FinCEN reports allow us, law enforcement, and regulators to slice and dice the information submitted in a much more advanced way.

          We're happy that more and more institutions are coming on board with the new formats in advance of the deadline. As of last Friday, approximately 90 percent of the batch-filed SARs and CTRs received from the largest financial institutions, and 60 percent of single SAR or CTR filings received (typically from smaller financial institutions), were submitted using the new formats. We know that industry is working hard to make the changes. One thing I want to point out in particular with respect to the new formats is the guidance that we put out last March with respect to new fields.

          As that guidance clearly explains, the new FinCEN CTR and FinCEN SAR do not create any new obligations or otherwise change existing statutory and regulatory expectations. Financial institutions must provide the most complete and accurate information known to them. They are not under an obligation to collect non-mandatory information simply because there is now a field for it. However, just as has always been the case, if financial institutions have information that is pertinent to a report, they need to be able to include it in the report, so that the CTR, SAR, or other FinCEN report is complete and accurate.

          FinCEN has and will continue to provide additional guidance and training materials in support of the new reports through Webinars, FAQs, and other publications and materials. And to keep this rapidly approaching deadline fresh in everyone's minds, we continue to work with our regulatory and industry partners by issuing our own reminders to industry.

          As a result of all the work that is being done within the industry, at FinCEN, and in partnership with regulatory and law enforcement partners, the adoption of the new reports will prove extremely valuable to our shared fight against money laundering, terrorist financing, and other financial crimes.

Conclusion

          My remarks today have focused extensively on the work being done by FinCEN's analytical team - not only their ongoing efforts, but where we are heading in the future. From the time I arrived at FinCEN, I have been continually impressed by the fascinating work our analysts are doing, and even more so, by their dedication each and every day to FinCEN's mission, and their desire to make a real difference as public servants.

          I've been in government long enough to know that FinCEN's analysts can stand toe-to-toe alongside the best analysts in the federal government and around the world. And to be their champion as Director of FinCEN is an honor. It is gratifying to hear how passionately our analysts feel about their work. In their own words, here is what some of them have to say:

"Arriving at FinCEN as an analyst from the banking compliance sector opened up a whole new world for me. I was really excited to join FinCEN because for the first time I would be able to view and analyze all of the SARs associated with a case and gain a better understanding of how my SARs were being used by FinCEN, as well as our Federal, state, and local partners. My first assignment was to analyze the movement "repatriation" of U.S. dollar currency from Mexico and the players engaged in the wholesale banknote industry. This project relied heavily on my banking knowledge, but it also required me to work alongside law enforcement, regulators, and the financial industry in a whole new capacity. I learned how best to review and analyze BSA data, but more importantly, I was having a real-time impact on the fight against Mexican Drug Cartels and their ability to place large amounts of illicit dollars back into the U.S. financial system. It was amazing that as a new analyst I could make such a difference."

"As a career analyst, I truly enjoy coming to work every day here at FinCEN for many reasons, but specifically because I am challenged by analyzing the BSA, adding value to a law enforcement case, developing a methodology for how money is laundered through a specific industry, or identifying a money laundering network. I think the best way to describe my job is to imagine five different 1,000 piece puzzles mixed together in a pile. My job is to try and determine how to put together each puzzle, while not knowing how many actual puzzles are in front of me. It's truly a rewarding and satisfying experience once you've finished a "puzzle" and are confident that you know not only what you're looking at, but that you can explain it to others."

          There is no doubt that we will never run out of puzzles to complete. And as the escalation of transnational criminal threats to the U.S. financial system has increased, so too has the imperative to ensure that FinCEN is fully maximizing its potential to disrupt this activity. I am hopeful that my remarks today have given you new insight into the team at FinCEN working to respond to these threats.

          But we can't do it alone. Your financial institutions are the eyes and ears in the fight against terrorists and other bad guys. The BSA data starts with you. It is the key to our defenses and we are depending on you. I am committed to maximizing our ability to be effective partners and colleagues.

          FinCEN is a critical partner in the fight against money laundering and terrorist financing. Our talented and dedicated team is committed to that mission. We have an incredible opportunity to serve the American public and to contribute to the safety of this country and the world. FinCEN will meet the challenges ahead working together with you, law enforcement, and our regulatory partners.

          Thank you once again for inviting me here to speak with you today.

###

Get back to us when you help get some money laundering banksters in jail!

The Art of Failing Gracefully: DEA & DOJ need to cover up Sinaloa cartel informant Vicente Zambada, the quid-pro-quo system, "Fast & Furious" arms distribution for Great Justice!!!

Hundreds of billions of dollars, between cash flows and valuations, depend upon the ability of American law enforcement structures avidly maintaining their illusionary belief system about laundered drug money, informants, and banking systems. All of this is normal, they say, it's normal to throw the book at tons of little fish while mysteriously failing to find any really substantial laundered drug money or criminal prosecution for lawyers and bankers involved. The name of the game is to fail gracefully at detecting and punishing drug money in the banking system, to create a PSYOP of coherency on top of countless total ironies, structured protection & utter failures.

By the same token, the US government really always tends to nudge all markets into being dominated by a few big actors, whether "legal" or "gray" or "shadow" - be they milk producers or drug traffickers. They want to minimize the number of PayPals on the market, and the number of major drug players.

At some point it apparently came to pass that formal informant deals with favored cartels would also be inked -- the Sinaloa cartel even officially promoted as the proper dominator of certain "plazas" in public relations items. Because no one really cares about war on drugs policy -- it's not like this horrible policy affects the level of gun violence in North America -- nothing ever gets done about this at the federal level.

It's beginning to finally dawn on people that the secretive Federal Reserve System wire transfer networks - casually known as Fedline & Fedwire -- must somehow be involved [noted in Oct 2010], and I have never seen a single person even bother to claim to the contrary. The banking wire transfer systems are inextricably part of the "protected" drug money laundering system which is "protected" in the same formal way as at least some of these Sinaloa crucial informant thugs. Let's see if state police can pry into the Fed. LOL!!

So anyway, we have hard proof of it in court that Jesus Vicente Zambada-Niebla's attorney was in fact an informant operated expressly to pull intel from Sinaloa into the US government.

The questions: how much the "kingpin" deserves cover from that, especially since he was moving along Fast & Furious guns to waste other cartels & assorted innocent people? How many documents showing underlying protected illegal relationships will the judge force into the public record? How much 'controlled demolition' will the public tolerate in this relatively obscure case?

This gets a nice update from Abby Martin & Andrew Kennis: Next Big DEA Scandal | Interview with Andrew Kennis - YouTube

PREVIOUSLY (about halfway down many details): ECHELON GCSB military surveillance vs New Zealand & Kim Dotcom; IRC logs on Anonymous false flag attacks viewed anew; Barrett Brown setup via #OpCartel | HongPong.com [Oct 22 2012]

All of this insane crap is directly related to the formal FBI informant illegal operations system which gets exposed in tiny nibbles, for a little more documentation on illegal ops see recently The New 21st Century COINTELPRO Mobius Strip: Undisclosed Participation, "OTHERWISE ILLEGAL ACTIVITY," Federal & State Informants, drug ops auditing in MN [Jan 31 2012]. Unfortunately the DEA's habit of giving traffickers informant status means that more nasty drugs easily find their way into Minnesota from handled/protected figures in Chicago. Thanks so much, Federal Government!

LINX: Cartel Member Says Fast And Furious Aimed To Supply Guns To Sinaloa Cartel - Business Insider (Aug 10 2012)

Mexican Official Accuses CIA Of 'Managing' Not 'Fighting' The Drug Trade - Business Insider (July 24 2012)

One batch of Zambada Court files: http://narcosphere.narconews.com/userfiles/70/Pleadings.Sinaloa.Zambada.pdf

More recent Narcosphere items - not a bad place to start: Big Media Discovers US Special Ops are Targeting Mexican Crime Organizations | the narcosphere [January 21 2013]

Fast and Furious Blurs the Line Between Cops and Crooks | the narcosphere [Bill Conroy Jan 6 2013]

Banks Are "Where the Money Is" In The Drug War | the narcosphere [Bill Conroy Dec 1 2012]

Background from Narcosphere: US Government Informant Helped Sinaloa Narcos Stay Out of Jail | the narcosphere [Bill Conroy Aug 7 2011]

US Prosecutors Fear Jailbreak Plot by Sinaloa “Cartel” Leader Zambada Niebla | the narcosphere [Bill Conroy Sept 17 2011]

US Government Accused of Seeking to Conceal Deal Cut With Sinaloa “Cartel” | the narcosphere [Bill Conroy Oct 1 2011]

Zambada Niebla Case Exposes US Drug War Quid Pro Quo | the narcosphere [Bill Conroy Dec 10 2011]

/////////////

Further background: 'El Chapo' Guzmán, Mexico's Most Powerful Drug Lord - Newsweek and The Daily Beast

Lolzy fake letter of love: Mexican Drug Cartels Thank Obama for Gun Control Push - BlackListedNews.com

Why Americans Must End America’s Self-Generating Wars | Global Research [Peter Dale Scott - Aug 30 2012]

America’s Secret Deal with the Mexican Drug Cartels | Global Research [Tom Burghardt Sept 3 2012] - MORE: Antifascist Calling...

Top enforcement agencies don't track crimes by informants [USA TODAY Oct 7 2012]

Narco News: US, Mexican Officials Brokering Deals with Drug “Cartels,” WikiLeaks Documents Show

Narco News: Funcionarios mexicanos y de EEUU negocian con "cárteles" de droga, según documentos de WikiLeaks

Mexican Special Forces Employed as Death Squads in Drug War, Email Records Released by WikiLeaks Reveal | the narcosphere

SIGNALING SYSTEM USG <-> CARTELS: http://wikileaks.org/gifiles/docs/1747720_re-fwd-re-fw-from-mx1-2-.html - FAKEDRUGWARSIGINT is the lulziest form of SIGINT, who can deny??

The whole thing is such a spectacular sham it really calls into question whether federal prosecutors, informants, drug laws and the rest of the charade should even exist in the first place. It is truly a massive stage of fakeness, and frankly none of these people deserve to have any influence over the level of drugs available in society.

Not that drugs are harmless, clearly they all have some negative qualities, but clearly this entire schema is hosed well beyond the point of no return, and can only produce more violence and chemical dependency as it drags us all into hell. There are of course countless rabbit holes involving drug trafficking links with 'deep events' like the CIA, Iran-Contra, 9/11, the Taliban & al-Qaeda etc and I'm not going to get into that much here, though plenty of Iran-Contra related background fills the history of links above. Also as linked here what is the role of NORTHCOM anyway?

A few more elements on the semi-suspended MN Drug Recognition Evaluator (DRE) program

Previously on hongpong.com: MK Occupy Minnesota: The Drug Recognition Evaluator BCA Investigation files (Nov 12 2012) -- MK Occupy Minnesota (May 3 2012)

The training section of Minnesota's Drug Recognition Evaluator program continues to be suspended, after a 513-page Bureau of Criminal Apprehension investigation raised more questions and stonewalling from officials. Whether or not anyone will 'get real' about intrinsically corrupt war on drugs and protected misconduct is another question. Whether or not anyone will admit the war on drugs funnels profits into Wall Street is yet another.

Fox 9 reporter Tom Lyden covered the DRE story (VIDEO), talking to one of the test subjects as well as my friend, attorney Nathan Hansen, who is planning to file a lawsuit. (I have done a little design work for Hansen in years past)

The role of the Minneapolis Police Department in DRE remains untouched by local officials. 3 months ago I interviewed the chair of the city public safety committee, council member Don Samuels (VIDEO) about the shutdown of civilian oversight in the city, and he said that there was no expected report from MPD about the DRE.

Other typical recent misconduct: MPD Officer Blayne Lehner named in misconduct lawsuit; Mpls settles for $85k - City Pages Blotter

CityPages has covered DRE from the beginning and has posted a series on it: DRE 'victims' to file civil lawsuit against alleged pot-distributing officers [SECOND IN SERIES] - Minneapolis - News - The Blotter

Here are a few more new DRE documents a research colleague found from elsewhere on the interwebs:

http://www.decp.org/documents/pdfs/WhatNew/Labor%20Day%20Period%20Totals%2020102.pdf - typical touting of arrests. Crossposted to Scribd: DRE Labor Day Period Totals 20102

Via Washington state, the 2010 version of the official DRE manual (it has the same distinct typeface as the DRE IACP certification form in the BCA document) : http://www.wsp.wa.gov/breathtest/docs/webdms/DRE_Forms/Manuals/dre7/Student%20Manual%20-%20January%202010%20-%20Part%201.pdf - rejected by Scribd because of password protection. Mirrored at http://hongpong.com/files/dre/DREStudentManual-January2010-Part1.pdf  - 4MB - 212 pgs. Again it is important to note this material emerges from a committee of the decidedly sketchy International Association of Chiefs of Police, not a scientific body with open peer review. Good stuff about licking toads on page 187 etc etc.

Minnesota - the 1997 DRE plan: http://archive.leg.state.mn.us/docs/pre2003/mandated/970234.pdf - crossposted to Scribd: DRE-MN-POST-1997-970234

Another DRE document from Littleton CO indicates state & federal funding: http://townoflittleton.org/images/TOLimgs/files/septpdactivities2012.pdf -

A password-protected Powerpoint. Anyone care to take a look? http://hongpong.com/files/dre/DRE_STL06.ppt . via http://entrapped.com/Media/DRE_STL06.ppt .

*****

Out in the wider world the drumbeat of drug war corruption continues. A popular cartoon from Politico / M.Wuerker:

drugwar-politico-cartoon.jpg

In both Mexico and Afghanistan, absurd formations are emerging. (via here) Pentagon Wants to Keep Running Its Afghan Drug War From Blackwater's HQ | Danger Room | Wired.com, related to 2009 - cryptogon.com » Blackwater Worldwide Changes Its Name to Xe; Same Mercenaries, but Now with More “Aviation Support”. Also the latest from NarcoNews: Mexico’s New President Set to Empower a “Devil’s Cartel” | the narcosphere.

Also via DaveyD, thorough documentation of this racist project: US Marshal Told By Supervisors Not to Bring the ‘War on Drugs’ to White Communities | Davey D's Hip Hop Corner

We'll leave it there for now...

MK Occupy Minnesota: The Drug Recognition Evaluator BCA Investigation files

By Dan Feidt -- hongpong.com -- MINNEAPOLIS -- NOV 12 2012 -- Law enforcement officers under a state training program called Drug Recognition Evaluators encouraged people in downtown Minneapolis, including Occupy Minnesota protesters at Peavey Plaza and other vulnerable and houseless people to participate in alcohol and drug intoxication evaluations. After a 35-minute video "MK Occupy Minnesota" [produced by Occupy Minneapolis, Communities United Against Police Brutality, Rogue Media & Twin Cities Indymedia] was released documenting claims of several DRE participants they'd been given drugs and encouraged to take drugs, an officer from Hutchinson, MN, stepped forward to corroborate part of that story.

UPDATE Nov 28: For a DRE training manual & a few other docs see the update. Thanks to CityPages for doing a whole series of posts including an interview.

Mn Bureau of Criminal Apprehension under the Department of Public Safety, generated a 513-page investigative report described in Minnesota Public Radio & Star Tribune stories, but not available publicly in full until now, adding another chunk to this incomplete story from one of the many gray areas in the war on drugs & the suppression of Occupy protesters.

New BCA Report URL: http://hongpong.com/files/dre/DRE-investigation-BCA.pdf (78MB)

May 3: http://www.hongpong.com/archives/2012/05/03/mk-occupy-minnesota-drugs-dre-program-peavey-plaza


Original video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vTgN17FZGKE MK Occupy Minnesota: Drugs & the DRE Program at Peavey Plaza - May 2 2012 - 155,777 views @ Nov 12 2012

SCRIBD URL: http://www.scribd.com/doc/112922193/DRE-Investigation-BCA

DRE Investigation BCA

This BCA report, a compilation of interviews, correspondence & law enforcement & their lawyers refusing to answer the BCA's questions about DRE, raises many questions. Besides the claims of the Occupy protesters, many unethical practices including cash for participation, discussing gaining "leverage" over "volunteers" by threatening to arrest them (pg 76), not having an ambulance near where people were encouraged to take drugs at the gravel pit in Richfield near the MnDOT garage, no waivers, the explicit suspending of state drug laws for a privately organized certification program (pg 91, 99), etc.

Many of the officers discuss a general sense of unease across their entire class, of trespassing certain obvious moral or ethical boundaries ('your morals are gone', pg 428). As Minneapolis considers dissolving the Civilian Review Authority oversight board, many connections to the Minneapolis Police Department including the 5th Precinct have not been reviewed.

Other items include: a BCA AT&T phone subpoena to trace phone/SMS activity by one of the officers involved, and more on the International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP) role in the program (pg 223, 231) -- as an officer discusses, they're called "evaluators" rather than "experts" because the courts don't really recognize it (pg 202). IACP receives large donations from major defense contractors to promote local police policies expanding biometrics & surveillance, war-on-terror tech deployed at home, mass incarceration and intensifying the war on drugs. The IACP has managed to impose this pseudo-legal yet scientifically unproven framework, the DRE, with its morally abhorrent training program, on many states besides Minnesota.

In the end of this phase, the Hennepin County Attorney's office ruled out filing charges after so many officers stonewalled (pg 54-57) [as the Strib noted, some of the same same legal operations used by the disgraced Metro Gang Strike Force officers]. Pages significant to documenting the way illegal government operations in Minnesota get papered over, the 'coverup machine' network of lawyered up law enforcement, listed below ('get everyone quiet', pg 367)-- and really, Hennepin concluded, unless an officer handed out a generous 42 grams in one sitting, it wouldn't be a felony crime.

While everything in this strange report should be taken critically, disturbing themes of emerge of relatively young rural police officers being sent around Minneapolis to find the chemically dependent & mentally ill, turn them loose again after they're intoxicated, without any help like medical or social support, and connections to further gray areas like developing informants in the drug world(pg 381), and a methamphetamine-addicted informant handled into performing an evaluation by a Ramsey County deputy.

Another key subject is the Donald Steven Turner interview (pg 485-492) wherein he describes not only his certainty that Occupiers were lying, he seemingly brags about giving a Minneapolis police officer he knows one person's name and then scaring them into jumping a train out of town, talking up his ability to develop 'profiles' on OccupyMN members, etc. While the authorities describe Turner as a credible OccupyMN member, he had a reputation for scuffling with people and being tossed from Occupy meetings, taking at least one bike, and other serious issues stretching back long before Occupy started in New York. This are some of the most jaded & disturbing statements I've ever seen documented, seemingly bragging about informing to spread fear. More interviews with others he affected are really needed to tell this particular story. Whether or not his statements have any validity, the damage to privacy of third parties he named has already been done in his statement to law enforcement -- unfortunately, redacting the first names Don put out there would do no good.

Voters showed last week they're becoming increasingly weary of the war on drugs, which has generated huge profits for lawyers, corporations, banks and Wall Street through laundered money. All this shadiness isn't a bug, it's a feature. Will Minnesota recognize the failure of the war on drugs and cancel abusive, unscientific programs like the DRE? Can Minnesota shift from punishment, coercion & incarceration to harm-reduction chemical dependency policies that treat everyone humanely?

[birthday/phone/contact info of people targeted by DRE was removed with black rectangles. This document did not arrive via government/data practices channels, and some other details, likely police personal details like cell phone & home addresses were apparently removed with marker probably by the BCA.]

For more information & work on similar issues please see the websites of groups involved in producing the initial MK Occupy Minnesota video:

Communities United Against Police Brutality - CUAPB.org - @CUAPB

roguemedia.org @roguemedia_org

OccupyMinneapolis.mn - @occupyMN

tc.indymedia.org @TCIMC

hongpong.com @hongpong

globalrevolution.tv @globalrevlive

---- This story and the original video MK Occupy Minnesota are licensed Creative Commons with Attribution --

--------

Here is shorthand for some interesting pages to check out further. Particular interesting pages marked with asterisks:

22 coverup

36 Hutchinson drug kit?

90 Munoz

42 coverup

49 Holiday parking lot lol

54-57 coverup

66 LDF coverup

76 using statutes for leverage to gain 'volunteers'

79 coverup

83 * "I just gave them marijuana it's not like I hurt anybody"

91 WTF instruction on illegal drugs?

99 WTF little to no instruction on street subjects

102 incentives "could offer them money"

105 "wink wink nod nod"

106 - why blank?

109 "I just gave them marijuana"

112 warnings about occupy minnesota / Munoz instruction after video

116 WTF

125 Telephone subpoena

129 Don Turner says occupiers lied about DRE

136 possible missing marijuana from Nobles Co evidence room?

140 Hennepin County Attorney CASE CLOSED summary

141 Hutchinson starts inquiry

142 Roster of police participants

148 players in International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP)

152-153 *** the case - interview

154 **** disposing of the case

157 no independent medical personnel or ambulance nearby (even though drugs are being taken in area)

162 phone subpoena

163 drugs with volunteers

190-191 coverup

198 getting leverage on volunteers- threaten to arrest

202 definitions of 'expert' vs 'evaluator' - they aren't real 'experts' but IACP labels it

206 Munoz instructs not to hand out drugs after video is posted

208 Michelle Ness: "we kinda looked over to Peavey and we're like whoa concentration of potential clients"

217 Hutchinson PD evidence sheet

223-224 IACP control log & material

226 instructors watch all evaluations?

227-228 training schedule

231 IACP

232 "kidnapping" & volunteers

233 probation & volunteers, illegal/warrant issues

235 sketchiness 'it was odd'

239 offering cheeseburgers

241 occupy & video questions

244 national players in IACP / DRE

245 coverup lawyer

249 5th Precinct MPD connection

259 seizure

261 MPD 5th Pct

268 MPD 5th Pct

273 MPD & incentives advice

275 coverup lawyer

278 * Certificates & IACP

279 uneasy feeling for all students

286 Otterson - no instruction

287 "shitty areas"

288 occupy video day we took final exam / weed

289 call to MPD about beat-up guy

291 * direct supervisor for years

295 no independent medical presence or ambulance at MnDOT

297 IACP

305 specs for program change from 12 to 15 evals

309 MPD 5th Pct

310 No waivers for drug participants

311 Munoz says don't provide drugs after occupy video

315 "target area"

323 story about prostitute

325 MPD

335 blackmail "volunteers" via Minneapolis statutes: " get us copies of Minneapolis codes, um in case we saw people you know breaking any city ordinances and kinda use that as a way to get them to see that, you know you can come with us or you know Minneapolis"

340 certification goes via the IACP DRE national website (NOT 'real' state authority)

343 coverup

347 *** Willers narrative - confusion over brothers

348 MPD

354 MPD

357 fear of being recorded at Peavey Plaza

360 ok to buy cigarettes, cash, overlook state drug law etc

361 giving $$$

367-8 *** coverup Legal Defense Fund "get everyone quiet"

381 developing informants "a lot of times we never charged 'em. We said you know give us some info on who your source is"

385-386 Pete's box getting low

387-88 ** informants high on meth

389 smoking in the gravel pit

390 letting off warrant suspect, more suspension of law

391 officer had weed "a bag the officer had the marijuana in" ??

402 incentives

405 MPD

406 coercion of "volunteers"

412-413 woman who was "nuts" = no mental health support

414 using traffic stops & $ for "volunteers"

415 giving out beer

421 snitching: "We did a UA and ah they actually um they apparently he was gonna snitch out some people for drugs and guns"

426 getting desperate, offering a buffet

427 threat of jail

428 ** "your morals are gone"

429 "you can either go to jail for possession of the drugs or if you want to cooperate with us we'll give you a pass."

434 morals/instruction

439 giving out shooter glasses

443-445 getting high

447 odd redaction may be house address?

460 crimes at discretion

468-469 crack, pimp, Popeye's

470 a pimp / the jacket incident

471"it is weird. It is a weird class to go out and try to find someone high"

479 AT&T cell phone subpoena

485-492 *** Don Steven Turner interview

487-492 *** Don talks to MPD Mercil (Sp?) a lot

495 it's like a joint task force re expanded geographic arrest powers

496-497 smoking in Richfield

499 goodie bag MJ

501-513 final Hennepin County report

--
To reach the publisher of this file contact Dan Feidt at hongpong@hongpong.com or at twitter.com/hongpong.

Interview on streaming radio & shortwave today on DRE drug scandal / MK Occupy Minnesota

UPDATE June 4: It was a cool interview but got cut off immediately after the host asked if there were similar nationwide patterns to DRE -- which of course there are, for example the Cleveland 5 entrapment case drugs were used to help get control of the FBI's patsies according to a report on Alternet by Arun Gupta:

Peskar says jobs weren’t the only thing Azir was hooking them up with. Baxter admitted to him that he was taking Adderall, a widely abused prescription stimulant. Peskar says, “Connor was also taking it, and mentioned, ‘I have a connect for Adderall.’ Both Wright and Baxter said the connection for the Adderall was Azir. I asked Baxter where he got it from, and he said ‘Doug’s boss.’”

So I only got about half the time I was allotted but nonetheless it was great to reach a new audience for these issues via shortwave, and I was able to discuss at some length National Special Security Events and the plan for domestic deployment of military forces known as USNORTHCOM CONPLAN 3502 Civil Disturbance Operations, which I believe NSSEs are partially used as live exercise cover for. (and mentioned the dual status task force which was in Chicago at the NATO summit yet not really seen)


Around 5:30PM Central today I'm doing a phone interview on the DRE drug scandal / MK Occupy Minnesota with the Global Freedom Report (streaming http://freedomradio.us/vof/ - shortwave WWCR World Wide Christian Radio 9.350 MHz!) & other topics - i'll try to get at the latest w Cruz house, etc over 40 mins as well. Fun fun!

Link to video is here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vTgN17FZGKE

BTW: Also I got a kick out of this video by various folks including the ACLU & Joseph Gordon-Levitt which shows in cartoon form, a cop selling drugs to a couple guys. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v2eXtCuVyFM&feature=youtu.be

Syndicate content