News

"Capital Shield 2014": Military Defense Support of Civil Authorities exercise coincides with US Capitol incident

The US government runs a lot of exercises, which usually happens for ordinary training reasons. On the other hand, many researchers of geopolitics and covert politics note that exercises serve other geopolitical purposes -- for example demonstrating a military alliance with an ally state in front of its rivals. Some argue that exercises can be used as cover for covert operations. Hence wherever there is some dramatic event in the US, it's always interesting to see if there are any coincidental exercises.

In today's case the exercise called Capital Shield 2014 or CS 14 involves 34 agencies. Even if there isn't some cloak-n-dagger twist to this event, doesn't an active exercise sort of encourage more aggressive behavior by officials?

See previously: TC Indymedia Exclusive: Secret 'Trigger' & blueprint for emergency domestic military crackdown plan revealed | HongPong.com // The Military’s Plans for Social Unrest: CONPLAN 3502, Civil Disturbance Operations and Martial Law | Public Intelligence // Defense Support of Civil authorities - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia // http://www.defense.gov/news/homelanddefensestrategy.pdf // http://www.dtic.mil/doctrine/new_pubs/jp3_28.pdf . Defense Support of Civil Authorities is laid out in USNORTHCOM CONPLAN 3501, and the "Civil Disturbance Operations" crackdown plan is right next to it, USNORTHCOM CONPLAN 3502.

Capital Shield 2014: First Responders train in Nation's Capital | Article | The United States Army

WASHINGTON (Sept. 30, 2013) -- Emergency vehicles and first responders are once again in action in the National Capital Region and will be thru Oct. 3. They are participating in "Capital Shield 2014."

CS 14 is a joint training exercise in the NCR that is hosted by the Joint Force Headquarters - National Capital Region. It brings federal, state, local and municipal agencies together to realistically test interagency operability during a crisis impacting the District of Columbia, Virginia, and Maryland. It also trains and prepares the Department of Defense to provide defense support to civil authorities and employ appropriate force protection measures as requested.

"Because we are all regional partners it's nice to be able to pick up the Phone and KNOW the other person on the end of the line when you are in need of some help," said Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Battalion Chief Paul Ruwe. "It's a lesson learned from 9/11. We had good regional contact with the FBI Washington office, and that really helped after the attack on the Pentagon."

Ruwe is the Incident commander at the Lorton Training site, Lorton Va., and said the training site will be very busy over the next few days.

More than 38 participating agencies from DOD and Capital region response agencies will perform mock mass casualty rescues, Defense Support to civil agency technical rescues and law enforcement tactical responses. The goal of the exercise is to ensure government agencies at every level are prepared to coordinate action to protect the public in the event of an actual disaster in the National Capital Region.

FOR ADDITIONAL INFORMATION: Please visit the Capital Shield 2014 website at www.mdwhome.mdw.army.mil/capital-shield.

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IMG/caption: Chief Warrant Officer 4, Frank Pater, Battalion Senior CBRN Officer explains the days training events to role-playing "victims" at the Lorton Va. emergency training site, Sept. 30, 2013. The Joint Force Headquarters - National Capital Region is…exercise.png

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Aha our old friend Defense Support of Civil Authorities (DSCA): Capital Shield

Concept of Operation

Exercise CS14 will be comprised of multiple FTX and CPX events both linked and de-linked through a scenario which will be designed to focus on testing JFHQ-NCR/MDW subordinate units, MDW Installations, and Component Services as a JTF on OPLAN 3600 requirements of CBRN response, Tech Rescue operations, Mass Casualty treatment, stabilization, evacuation and DSCA.

Purpose

Validate JFHQ-NCR/MDW, Service Components, National Guard, JTF CAPMED, and Interagency Partners consequence management operation through a FTX and CPX focusing on Defense Support of Civil Authorities (DSCA) scenarios.

Objectives

  • Annual Validation of OPLAN 3600 Emergency Preparedness in the NCR.

  • Execute Command & Control with Subordinate Units, Subordinate Garrisons, Service Components, NG, CapMed and IA mission partners.

  • Execute interagency interoperability, coordination, and situational awareness within the NCR.

  • Validate JRC/JRSOI procedures with MDW Subordinates/Installations, Components Services/Installations.

  • Validate BSI Capabilities for MDW Subordinate Installations & Component Service Installations.

End State

JFHQ-NCR/MDW is prepared to conduct Defense Support of Civil Authorities (DSCA) and BSI operations.

In an additional angle, the best early circulated footage of the attack is from Alhurra which is a US government-sponsored news service in the Middle East. See http://talkingpointsmemo.com/livewire/video-shows-police-chase-at-u-s-ca.... As noted by ABC News, Alhurra is sponsored by the Broadcasting Board of Governors, like "Radio Free Europe" , "Voice of America" & "Radio Free Asia". http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/headlines/2013/10/what-is-alhurra-network-th...

City Pages Poll: A time for quixotic votes?

This is a bit of a joke, but after some really bad turns lately, a friend trying to raise my spirits a bit suggested that it would be a good idea to get people to vote for HongPong.com on Best Local Blog on CityPages. Is this high profile? Not really. Trendy? No. In with the cool cats? Dubious. Likely to win or even make top 5? HaHa.

If there is anyone who *really* deserves it it's Rich Neumeister & Open Secrets blog (http://opensecretsmn.blogspot.com/) , if only because no one else has really been following the matter of secret stuff in MN.

But I would say this site has done as much to circulate interesting new news as any non-corporate MN blog in 2012, including publishing hundreds of pages no one outside the system has seen before. Plus you can annoy the establishment more efficiently than any other choice.

Some highlights: Helping on the DRE drug scandal including publishing the BCA internal report along with working on the earlier video report & followups - which has 158,281 views right now, the MnDOT tracking system documents, Among the earliest Occupy Sandy notes. In early 2013 the MPD Strategic Information Center. In March a new FBI FOIA doc drop from spying campaigns on anarchists in Minnesota and Iowa.

Even the last story of 2012, about the Homeland Security TSA team and possible Vikings drone, spurred more coverage of the TSA's bloated unnecessary role at the NFL, though the drone was claimed not to be a government item. Also covered Idle No More at MOA and the first IdleNoMore protest in the US at the Canadian consulate.

On less local: The story on Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), an almost totally unknown & quite crazy new police agency in the federal government -- and indeed basically no one had blogged about it, or written mainstream stories addressing their growing collection of scary domestic riot battlewagons that are once again a popular meme.

For the weird goings-on, the shady FawkesSec case. Perhaps more significantly, domestic detention facilities material turned up. The shady world of domestic military policies stemming from the 2008 Republican National Convention -- analysis of this led to a story that got some bounce at least!

Also, the Wisconsin recall & the crushing of the Ron paul movement. Homeland Security crackdown on the Occupy movement. The development of post-Facebook social networking alternatives.

It is not a huge number of posts over the year but I would say they are not too shabby and usually bring something new and unusual to light.

Instead of buddying up to the usual suspects and playing their game, the narrative thread over the last year has cut its own path, with great support from sources and friends.

The info: Vote in the Best of the Twin Cities 2013 Readers' Poll - Minneapolis - Arts - Dressing Room

And vote here: City Pages Poll. Vote for who you like!!

Reviewing the 2013 stories cheered me up though. It's hard to get a sense of direction, some kind of feeling there's traction from writing on the ethereal interwebs.

There's been a lot of hard parts of life to get through lately -- hug your friends. I'm taking a few days away from the digital sphere of madness -- unable to promote this Quixotic mission in the interwebs -- but back around next week.

MK Occupy Minnesota: Drugs & the DRE Program at Peavey Plaza

UPDATE NOV 12 2012: Bureau of Criminal Apprehension files released show questioned law enforcement stonewalling

Video documentation by local activists and independent media shows that police officers and county deputies from across Minnesota have been picking up young people near Peavey Plaza for a training program to recognize drug-impaired drivers. Multiple participants say officers gave them illicit drugs and provided other incentives to take the drugs. The Occupy movement, present at Peavey Plaza since April 7th, appears to be targeted as impaired people are dropped off at the Plaza, and others say they've been rewarded for offering to snitch on the movement.

Local independent media activists and members of Communities United Against Police Brutality began investigating police conduct around the Plaza after witnessing police dropping off impaired people at the plaza and hearing rumors that they were offering people drugs. We videotaped police conduct and interviewed participants, learning some very disturbing information about the DRE program.

Officers stated on record the DRE program, run by the Minnesota State Patrol, has no Institutional Review Board or independent oversight. They agreed no ambulances or EMTs were on site at the Richfield MnDOT facility near the airport where most subjects were taken. Multiple times, participants left Peavey Plaza sober, returned intoxicated, and said they'd been given free drugs by law enforcement. We documented on more than one occasion, someone being told they were sober by one officer, and then picked up by a different officer, and returning intoxicated.

Given the dangers of impaired driving, there is value in training law enforcement officers to distinguish between the effects of various drugs and several common medical conditions. However, we have captured video footage of instances in which DRE trainees recruited subjects who are not already impaired, and those participants say they were given drugs by the officers.

Although program documents indicate that participants must sign a waiver, https://dps.mn.gov/divisions/msp/forms-reports/Documents/SFSTSponsorResp...
there was no indication from any of the participants interviewed that a waiver was offered or obtained. Further, video footage seems to validate the recollections of participants that no medical personnel or ambulance were on site during the observation and testing in Richfield. A DRE officer told one of our investigators that no Institutional Review Board assessment of the program has been made, a requirement of all experiments involving human subjects. Since it's unethical to encourage people to take drugs--whether by giving them drugs directly or enticing them with food, cigarettes, or other rewards (which participants say they were given)--it is unlikely such a program would pass IRB review as it endangers the test subjects.

According to the WCCO article from May 2011, officer trainees in the past have worked with various non-profit organizations to recruit drug users. It would appear now that they are no longer relying solely on this tactic, instead recruiting users directly and, participants say, providing them with drugs. After the sessions, these individuals are then dropped off in public areas without supportive care, creating a public safety hazard. In an example at Peavey Plaza caught on film, an individual who said he's been smoking courtesy of the police for an hour, crossed a line of Minneapolis police barricades, climbed to the top of a large sign and sat 15 feet above the sidewalk swinging his arms and legs in front of a police camera.

Our investigation points to particular efforts to target and recruit youth. Further, law enforcement officers have been taped recruiting people from the Peavey Plaza area of Nicollet Mall and have dropped off a number of impaired individuals at Peavey Plaza. In some instances, Minneapolis police squad cars were present while DRE trainees recruited people at Peavey Plaza. After receiving drugs, some subjects were asked to snitch on the Occupy movement or asked about various people and activities of Occupy, they said. Given efforts by the Minneapolis city council to pass an ordinance designed to restrict access to Peavey Plaza by the Occupy movement, the conduct of DRE trainees points to the possibility that they are working hand-in-glove with Minneapolis police to discredit and disrupt the Occupy movement.

"I think most people would be very surprised to have our tax dollars used to get people high," states Michelle Gross, president of Communities United Against Police Brutality. "These activities call into question the methods and motives of this DRE training."

- more updates - http://facebook.com/occupymn - http://twitter.com/occupymn
*******

Note by Dan Feidt (hongpong) -- in this particular case I ended up questioning the deputy, other sources, as well as helping wrangle the story together over about 5-6 days, then editing & subtitles, etc., to make the material legible. However this was a large project with many contributors and videographers who took on a risky story and put it on the line to get the truth.-
- contact info - hongpong@hongpong.com - http://twitter.com/hongpong

First warm day of 2012 = Days 1&2: OccupyMinneapolis Mark II spontaneously reappears in Peavey Plaza! The Unexpected 2012 Peavey Plaza Occupation of March 6-7-?

IN an entirely unexpected and spontaneous emergence of lulz, the first dry, warm evening of spring led to an impromptu occupation of Peavey Plaza on Nicollet Mall, with OccupyMpls (occupyminneapolis.mn) regulars holding it down into the night with two tents, sleeping gear, hot tea and snacks. Excellent vibes and a lot of catching up with everyone after chilly and challenging months. A spontaneous occupation emerges through a quick consensus - an agile small decision leading to a flock of funfunfun for regular and a few new Minneapolis occupiers. Mayor RT Rybak, under a lot of heat over the new stadium hustle and his foreclosure failsauce - with Monique White's house under an apparently illegal eviction and a strong campaign of actions & a petition last week with 8 council members aboard - right now he's on vacation in the tropics! Perfect circumstances on all levels.

UPDATE 4PM WEDS: Occupiers departed earlier Weds without any police issues. Rain continued over much of the early day & the occupation hadn't been intended as a long-term effort, but the effect was a huge morale boost, as well as an introduction for many to future Peavey occupation possibilites.

The day's temperature had soared around 45° - it was about 8°F on Monday and now suddenly 59°F. Well after midnight it was still 50°, hardly a challenge to these seasoned Minnesota occupiers that had finally been driven out last year in freezing temps, forbidden shelter on the county-controlled Peoples Plaza (fka govt plaza).

20120306_222353.jpg

The marvelous thing was that this was not planned at all before today, catching the city, and everyone else, entirely by surprise! A couple of the regulars decided to go for it at 4:30 PM, made some calls and threw up two tents. Occupier chalkings about downtown on the first warm day of the year spawned constructive discussions, calls were made, and the impromptu scene coalesced, along with a march down to the police station which returned to Peavey around 10 or so.

A peak of around 20 folks were around about midnight or later. More continued to trickle in, signs got posted up, and the police basically went away. They double-parked in front of WCCO for a while but were gone by 11.

An officially announced relaunch of Occupy Minneapolis in April includes Peavey Plaza as a possible site for occupation, but the Unexpected 2012 Peavey Plaza Occupation of March 6-7-? 2012 reminded all of us how much fun it is to just spontaneously go for holding a space. It was great to see many of our comrades after a tough winter. Cutting right into a space on the spur of the moment, a perfect antidote & marker to the end of winter doldrums, a new turn, a new phase, a new space and a new way to have fun while pushing back. While planning is great, everyone can agree, there can be too much planning. With a quick decision to plonk down for the evening, a new opportunity to put one over on the city unexpectedly arrived.

Peavey Plaza is a privately owned two-acre park in a funky 1973 high modernist style on Nicollet Mall, across from WCCO, Brit's Pub, a church and adjacent to Orchestra Hall. It's organized around a currently-drained series of pools, with tiers of pavement and grass, as well as mysterious square platform islands.

Hennepin County Property Interactive Map - evidently it's owned by the City. The Taxpayer is the city and the official market value is a spectacular $0.
Screen shot 2012-03-07 at 4.41.54 AM.png

Notably, Peavey is caught in an interesting political situation, with a somewhat controversial redesign plan rolling into 2013. The original designers objected to the Minnesota Orchestral Association and Minneapolis strong-arming the design process and basically kicking them out, including two-thirds of their own design team, and the original designer M. Paul Friedberg.

MPR: Architects, preservationists concerned over Peavey Plaza's future. A new vision for Peavey Plaza | StarTribune.com (Oct 2011) Strib reports state has put up $2 million in bonding while downtown city councilwoman Lisa Goodman says it would cost between $8 and $10 million. But occupiers can immediately make it far more awesome for free!

Statement from dissidents on Plaza design. Minneapolis' Peavey Plaza to get major makeover | MinnPost. Peavey Plaza: Reflections by Friedberg. Friends of Peavey Plaza, Minneapolis. THe Preservation Alliance of MN put it on 2008 ten most endangered historic sites.

Pictures are Creative Commons - with Attribution to Dan Feidt (@hongpong)

NDAA & foreclosure signs in no time!

20120307_021615.jpg

The spooky Mpls police van was lurking around midnight across from Ichiban but not sure if related.

20120306_230858.jpg

Glass chalk hits WCCO which had reportedly declared OccupyMinneapolis dead earlier on Tuesday. By that night: tents across the street. Problem?

20120307_003513.jpg

WCCOlulz glass chalk.

20120307_003524.jpg

The TAC is BACK - see TAC group on occupyminneapolis.mn .

20120307_003536.jpg

<<< nom nom nom >>>

20120307_002956.jpg

they're baaaaack! :-D

20120307_002538.jpg

Team Anarchy vs Channel 4 == lulz!

20120307_003458.jpg

Cops over there? What, me worry?

20120307_005512.jpg

OccuDog arrives late.

dog-at-peavey.jpg

What fun!! Even if for an evening - Occupy Minneapolis is back for 2012. Problem?

March 22 mega-link dump: ChernobyLinks & Middle East twitter mil ops live feeds, Nuclear Annotations, CIA Facebook OnionLol; Syria videos & moar

A ton of the latest & greatest links to throw at ya, roughly themed out! First some Lols and things to check out:

CIA's 'Facebook' Program Dramatically Cut Agency's Costs | Onion News Network

Bloomberg's Winkler Discusses Fed Bank Loan Data Ruling - Video - Bloomberg

Granbury woman run over, killed by monster truck at Dallas strip club | Dallas | News fr...

In reversal, key fax allowed in ex-CIA agent case | ajc.com - Elderly Rightwing CIA Cuban terrorist Luis Posada Carriles is tangled up in Texas court for 1997 terror bombings.

This was pretty awesome: Owning the Weather (2009) - IMDb

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Middle East scenes:

Libya: Sometimes It’s Right To Fight! « Liam Fox: Irreverence Cafe - a lot of people disagree w this idea!

...because of the hypocrisy factor in part: Bahrain and Yemen declare war on their protesters - Middle East, World - The Independent

Egypt State Security Officials Named // Flickr: The Piggipedia موسوعة الجلادين Pool

Live Blog Libya - March 22 | Al Jazeera Blogs - running Drupal!

Al Jazeera: Has the future arrived? - Opinion // AIPAC's newest strategy.

Livetweets and radioscanning: Larry Van Horn (MilcomMP) on Twitter // Gayle Van Horn (QSLRptMT) on Twitter // Shortwave Central // Milcom Monitoring Post: Monitoring Operation Odyssey Dawn - Update // Milcom Monitoring Post

FMC the Netherlands (FMCNL) on Twitter // Notes: Burhan Gharaibeh (burhanco) on Twitter

Listen: Secret Libya Psyops, Caught by Online Sleuths | Danger Room | Wired.com

Morocco I think: YouTube - مظاهرة في داعل درعا سوريا

Syria: Wave of unrest shakes Syria, crowds torch party HQ | The Raw Story // YouTube - شام - القامشلي - الأكراد يجيبون درعا نعم للحرية21-3-2011 // YouTube - شام - دمشق - اعتقالات الأموي 20-3-2011 // YouTube - شام - دمشق - اعتقالات الأموي 20-3-2011 // YouTube - شام - درعا 1 موكب تشييع الشهداء 20-3-2011

Disturbing as hell: US Army 'kill team' in Afghanistan posed with photos of murdered civilians | World news | The Guardian. This one is psyop jammed in the US eh?

IDF officers confirm special department created to monitor left-wing organizations - Haaretz Daily Newspaper | Israel News

Rap News reports on the uprisings in the Middle East and Midwest | Raw Replay

Yugoslavia, Iraq, Libya: beware the lies of March | Neil Clark | Comment is free | guardian.co.uk

Chossudovsky: Libya no-fly zone means war

Revolutionary Politics » Blog Archive » The Littlest Invasions, No-fly zones and covert ops are just as bad as large-scale interventions.

Kinda Nsfw: BeRNaNKaGeDDoN 2012 | zero hedge - in space no one can hear you print.

Interactive Timeline Of Middle-East/North Africa Turmoil | zero hedge

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ChernobyLinkS! Or tune in live: NHK WORLD TV on USTREAM: Official NHK WORLD TV live on USTREAM. NHK WORLD TV is an English language 24-hour international news and information channel. New...

Chernobyl design RBMK 1000:
chornobyl.gif

Chernobyl | Chernobyl Accident | Chernobyl Disaster

RBMK Reactors | reactor bolshoy moshchnosty kanalny | Positive void coefficient

.....MOAR LINX! BELOW THE FOLD.....

More horrible news today

But it ain't all bad...

Well first check out SPK having an adventure in Asia: The Road To Phnom Penh: On Border Crossings and Bus Travel | The Agonist.

He has made it to Thailand where things are quickly going to hell. BBC NEWS | World | Asia-Pacific | Thai protests shut second airport.

BBC NEWS | World | Asia-Pacific | Thai crisis exposes class struggle

BBC NEWS | World | South Asia | Sri Lanka rebel HQ 'to fall soon'

Over in Babel: Wal-Mart Employee Trampled to Death - NYTimes.com

Latest West Bank settler atrocities: The House of Dispute | The American Prospect: A house in Hebron has become the site of the latest battle over settlements in the West Bank. In a ruling last week, Israel's Supreme Court gave residents three days to clear out voluntarily, or face eviction. Via: TPMCafe | Palestine First, Then Syria & Hebron Settler Outrage

Democrats may play hardball in Pennsylvania - Los Angeles Times

TPMMuckraker | Talking Points Memo | Unnamed GOP Senator Blocking Appointment Of Key Bailout Overseer

The Crypt: Wade claims to have given info on five lawmakers to DOJ - Politico.com

Krugman: Op-Ed Columnist - Lest We Forget - NYTimes.com: A few months ago I found myself at a meeting of economists and finance officials, discussing — what else? — the crisis. There was a lot of soul-searching going on. One senior policy maker asked, “Why didn’t we see this coming?” There was, of course, only one thing to say in reply, so I said it: “What do you mean ‘we,’ white man?”

Awesome. For some reason he keeps getting cooler.

More establishment bullshit, courtesy the DailyKos:

The Arena - Politico's daily debate with policymakers and opinion shapers | Politico.com: Did press bias in favor of Obama constitute, as one prominent journalist says, a major media failure? Do you think it made much difference in the election's outcome?

I like how she fails to note "challenging powerful people" Deborah Howell - Ten Ways to Keep a Newspaper Strong - washingtonpost.com

There's a funny one from Howard Wolfson, who got obsessed with Drudge's bollox: The Screens Issue - Moments That Mattered - NYTimes.com

That's all for now.

Reuters: Afghanistan occupation PSYOPS and press offices to formally merge; what else is new?!

Why actually win a hopeless war, when you can run a perception management campaign to trick the American public into thinking you're winning?!?

"Information Operations, Spinstorms & latent contradictions" indeed... Previously noted: "The strategic target remains our population:" Some more tasty links: military industrial complex in America and in yr brains! | HongPong.com

and another example of the program - exposed via FOIA: NYTimes: Behind TV Analysts, Pentagon’s Hidden Hand

Sometimes these cats make my paranoia obsolete. It's sooo easy :)

For your reference: The official US Army Psychological Operations manual.

The target is your brains!!! Ahh formalized domestic-directed propaganda, so clean & polished. I wonder how many contractors will profit! (huge hat tip to barrisj_redux @agonist)

Press And "Psy Ops" to Merge At NATO Afghan HQ - Sources - NYTimes.com

Press And "Psy Ops" to Merge At NATO Afghan HQ: SourcesBy REUTERS Published: November 29, 2008

Filed at 2:01 a.m. ET

KABUL (Reuters) - The U.S. general commanding NATO forces in Afghanistan has ordered a merger of the office that releases news with "Psy Ops," which deals with propaganda, a move that goes against the alliance's policy, three officials said.

The move has worried Washington's European NATO allies -- Germany has already threatened to pull out of media operations in Afghanistan -- and the officials said it could undermine the credibility of information released to the public.

Seven years into the war against the Taliban, insurgent influence is spreading closer to the capital and Afghans are becoming increasingly disenchanted at the presence of some 65,000 foreign troops and the government of President Hamid Karzai.

Taliban militants, through their website, telephone text messages and frequent calls to reporters, are also gaining ground in the information war, analysts say.

U.S. General David McKiernan, the commander of 50,000 troops from more than 40 nations in NATO's International Security Assistance Force (ISAF), ordered the combination of the Public Affairs Office (PAO), Information Operations and Psy Ops (Psychological Operations) from December 1, said a NATO official with detailed knowledge of the move.

"This will totally undermine the credibility of the information released to the press and the public," said the official, who declined to be named.

ISAF spokesman Brigadier General Richard Blanchette said McKiernan had issued a staff order to implement a command restructure from December 1 which was being reviewed by NATO headquarters in Brussels, but he declined to go into details of the reorganization.

"This is very much an internal matter," he said. "This is up with higher headquarters right now and we're waiting to get the basic approval. Once we have the approval we will be going into implementation."

But another ISAF official confirmed that the amalgamation of public affairs with Information Operations and Psy Ops was part of the planned command restructure. This official, who also declined to be named, said the merger had caused considerable concern at higher levels within NATO which had challenged the order by the U.S. general.

"DECEPTION ACTIVITIES"

NATO policy recognizes there is an inherent clash of interests between its public affairs offices, whose job it is to issue press releases and answer media questions, and that of Information Operations and Psy Ops.

Information Operations advises on information designed to affect the will of the enemy, while Psy Ops includes so-called "black operations," or outright deception.

While Public Affairs and Information Operations, PA and Info Ops in military jargon, "are separate, but related functions," according to the official NATO policy document on public affairs, "PA is not an Info Ops discipline."

The new combined ISAF department will come under the command of an American one-star general reporting directly to McKiernan, an arrangement that is also against NATO policy, the NATO official said.

"While coordination is essential, the lines of authority will remain separate, the PA reporting directly to the commander. This is to maintain credibility of PA and to avoid creating a media or public perception that PA activities are coordinated by, or are directed by, Info Ops," the NATO policy document says.

"PA will have no role in planning or executing Info Ops, Psy Ops, or deception activities," it states.

The United States has 35,000 of the 65,000 foreign troops in Afghanistan, operating both under ISAF and a separate U.S.-led coalition operation, but both come under McKiernan's command.

Washington is already scheduled to send another 3,000 troops to arrive in the country in January and is now considering sending 20,000 more troops in the next 12 to 18 months, further tipping the numerical balance among ISAF forces.

"What we are seeing is a gradual increase of American influence in all areas of the war," the NATO official said. "Seeking to gain total control of the information flow from the campaign is just part of that."

(Editing by John Chalmers)

WikiLeaks battles suspicious front companies in the Caymans; Swedish server room fire; WikiLeaks mirrors holding strong!

All right here is a new one. WikiLeaks.org got set up a while ago to offer a WikiPedia-style spot for edgy secret documents to get dumped. And they are getting some press. Now, a Situation has arisen, knocking the main server offline as their CA-based domain registrar folds under legal pressure. Because WikiLeaks was leaking.... suspicious bits about the Cayman Islands fronts of some bank or something. Apparently the UK server, among others, are still fine. Here is the list of mirrors.

Here is a list of Wikileaks Cover Name URL links which worked ok for us in the last few hours:

http://wikileaks.la/
https://secure.wikileaks.la/

http://home.e.co.za/
https://secure.home.e.co.za/

http://joburg.e.co.za/
https://secure.joburg.e.co.za/

http://new.alain.co.za/
https://secure.new.alain.co.za/

http://wikileaks.be/
https://secure.wikileaks.be/

http://stockholm.divx.se/
https://secure.stockholm.divx.se/

http://jwdc.org/
https://secure.jwdc.org/

http://ljsf.org/
https://secure.ljsf.org/

http://freedomsbell.org/
https://secure.freedomsbell.org/

http://freedomspen.org/
https://secure.freedomspen.org/

http://libertypen.org/
https://secure.libertypen.org/

http://sunshinepress.org/
https://secure.sunshinepress.org/

http://new.1.vg/
https://secure.new.1.vg/

http://zurich.base-v.ch/
https://secure.zurich.base-v.ch/

http://bratislava.iypt.sk/
https://secure.bratislava.iypt.sk/

http://new.iypt.sk/
https://secure.new.iypt.sk/

http://wikileaks.org.uk/
https://secure.wikileaks.org.uk/

http://new.ilex.cl/
https://secure.new.ilex.cl/

http://wikileaks.tl/
https://secure.wikileaks.tl/

http://freedomsbell.com/
https://secure.freedomsbell.com/

http://wikileaks.in/
https://secure.wikileaks.in/

http://bucharest.roxi.ro/
https://secure.bucharest.roxi.ro/

http://wikileaks.es/
https://secure.wikileaks.es/

http://wikileaks.ws/
https://secure.wikileaks.ws/

http://riga.ax.lt/
https://secure.riga.ax.lt/

http://special.k.vu/
https://secure.special.k.vu/

http://wikileaks.cx/
https://secure.wikileaks.cx/

http://new.it.cx/
https://secure.new.it.cx/

Some of the Cover Names presumably just re-direct traffic to the now missing www.wikileaks.org and so are effectively not working either i.e.

http://wikileaks.org.au/
https://secure.wikileaks.org.au/

http://wikileaks.de/
https://secure.wikileaks.de/

http://wikileaks.org.nz/
https://secure.wikileaks.org.nz/

Some are more peculiar in that unencrypted URLs either time out or are not working,

However, the corresponding SSL URLs work ok e.g.:

https://secure.smoke.ganja.nl/
https://secure.moskva.orts.ru/

There are some caveats about the secure proxy certificates and whatnot - I.E. what are these 'moskva orts' Russians really up to? [Something quite cool i would bet, anyway]

There is a blog here: WikiLeak.org with more news on that.

http://wikileaks.org.uk/wiki/Wikileaks_survives_censorship%2C_ddos%2C_fire :

Spy Blog: Wikileaks survives a fire, but is under Temporary Restraining Order partial censorship

Link
http://spyblog.org.uk
Country
United Kingdom
Date
2008-02-17

It looks as if the interesting and controversial, Wikileaks website, which promises "anonymous, untraceable, uncensorable" publication of leaked documents from whistleblowers, and which recently published the devastating No2ID Campaign annotated leaked UK National Identity Scheme document , is weathering some technical hitches and legal litigation attacks.

It seems that there has been a fire in an Uninterruptible Power Supply, which took the WikiLeaks web servers offline for much of Saturday, at their Swedish co-location hosting company, PRQ Inet, which has experience of attempts at censorship, through their former hosting of the peer to peer filesharing and political phenomenon, The Pirate Bay.

[editor: shortly before the fire unknown persons launched a 500Mbps distributed denial of service attack. It is not known if or how the attack is related to the other events described in this article].

More seriously and for the longer term, the brand name of WikiLeaks.org is no longer online, due to a Temporary Restraining Order issued by the California Northern District Court in San Francisco, aimed at a Domain Name Registrar, rather than just the actual publishers of controversial material, who happen to be outside of US legal jurisdiction..

See this partial public list of Wikileaks Cover Names for alternative URLs which have not yet been censored.

The plaintiffs in the California case are a Swiss Bank bank - Bank Julius Baer and its associated Cayman Islands tax avoidance subsidiaries, egged on by their expensive Hollywood media celebrity shyster lawyers Lavely & Singer. Julius Baer have been pursuing a Swiss whistleblower, some of whose leaked documents have been allegedly published on WikiLeaks.org. Why this is a problem when the world's financial monitoring and tax authorities appear to have already had access to them, is a mystery.

See Bank Julius Baer vs. Wikileaks

WikiLeakS.org have also had legal threats from ineptitude lawyers Schillings -- who in tried to censor blogs critical of the dubious Russian / Uzbek billionaire Alisher Usmanov] which caused much of the UK political and Arsenal football club fan blogosphere, to rally together in condemnation of the "collateral damage" which was to caused to innocent political bloggers, across the political spectrum.

Schillings are acting against WikiLeaks.org because of their publication of a prospectus to potential rescue investors of the Northern Rock plc bank scandal, something which is now obsolete, but was of massive public interest to all UK taxpayers and investors, and which the mainstream media caved in to after Schillings shyster threats, and an expensive (effectively taxpayer funded) High Court Injunction.

See Northern Rock vs. Wikileaks.

It is interesting that the first threats to this supposedly "uncensorable, anonymous, mass whistleblowing" project, do not come from Government Big Brother authorities, but from the private sector, and from equipment failures at a Single Point of Failure.

As with the Alisher Usmanov affair, the tactics of the media celibrity shysters in the Bank Julius Baer case is to threaten parts of what should be neutral, exempt internet infrastructure companies, with potentially expensive litigation in court rather than just the actaul publishers of the allegedly defamatory or confidential or copyright material.

Even if such companies win in court, the expense of kegal advice is such that it could cost them far more money in legal fees, than they are getting from a cheap domain name registration or webhosting package, so they are tempted to cave in to such shyster demands for censorship.

Only by pointing out the damage to their own brand names and potential profits, as a result of the disgust that most active internet customers feel, when the rich and powerful and their shysters, try to bully individuals or small groups of activists, can this economic threat be counterbalanced.

See the Censorship Threats from Lawyers category archive of blog postings on the WikiLeak.org blog, which comments on the technical, legal and ethical aspects of the WikiLeakS.org project.

We are going to Iowa right now!! And sending video to YouTube!

A big adventure is at hand: I and two friends are going down to Iowa right now. We are going down there to see what is going on and wander around. I just figured out to upload videos directly from my phone, and we will have other tech items to capture the Iowa Caucus scene.

Videos will be posted to YouTube consistently under the username HongPong unless we get bored/and/or thrown out @ http://www.youtube.com/hongpong . We will also have some updates posted on http://www.hongpong.com .

My friend Bobby "the Captain" is a strong Ron Paul supporter. I, Dan Feidt, am suspicious of the whole scene, and Andy French is a renegade philosopher. With one Ron Paul and two agnostics in the mix, what will happen?

Anyone on the scene or having a tip for us, can send us a buzz at 6513387661@myhelio.com or 651-338 7661.

Thanks for your interest!

NAFTA Superhighway scheme exposed in Minnesota - not bad for a day's work!! Now I'm going on vacation!!!1!!!

All right everyone. I am about to leave for England & France with my brother and dad tomorrow and I don't plan to blog or stay in the loop at all. But before I go, here is a story I did about the secret NAFTA superhighway scheme uncovered here in Minnesota. We published this in Politics in Minnesota: The Weekly Report yesterday...

SuperRondo Superhighway? MnDOT, NASCO, and plans for the I-35 NAFTA Superhighway

St. Paul's Rondo Days festival is right around the corner on July 21st. Rondo, of course, was the primarily black neighborhood obliterated when I-94 was built and blasted through, a route selected because of the neighborhood's lack of political clout. Deploying the "Stops-4-Us" message, the University Avenue Community Coalition plans to raise awareness about the potential damage to their neighborhoods because of the proposed Central Corridor light rail project, which they fear will remove parking, disrupt commerce and fail to offer enough stops for their community. The federal government wants fewer stops on the Corridor to reduce trip time, or else federal funds will be jeopardized. As one UACC organizer said to PIM, this federal policy has effectively removed transit stops from other urban communities around the nation.

On a much larger scale, proposals are now being drawn up for large transportation networks across America piggybacking on the interstate highway system. PIM has obtained documents from the Minnesota Department of Transportation about proposals to create major international transportation corridors along I-35 and I-94. The documents were obtained from MnDOT via the Minnesota Data Practices Act by local lawyer Nathan Hansen and posted on his blog and law firm's website. We have packaged the PDFs into a 66 MB ZIP archive available here through PIM's website.

The major group coordinating this effort is North America's Supercorridor Coalition, or NASCO. The MnDOT files include many strategic public relations emails among NASCO, lobbyists, government employees across the country, in Canada and Mexico, as well as grant applications specifying the exact nature of NASCO projects. Many emails among MnDOT personnel are also included. These documents formed the basis for a report by Jerome Corsi at WorldNetDaily, which also discussed MnDOT's views of U.S. Sen. Norm Coleman's (R) position on the matter. (Officially, he doesn't have one). The documents confirm that MnDOT agreed to join NASCO for a specially discounted price of $15,000, money that perhaps could have been better spent patching I-35W's potholes.

NASCO's website declares that I-35 is already the NAFTA superhighway; the group is not trying to build some vast network. Oklahoma City's mayor recently agreed [GoogleVideo] that I-35 was "really a part of that NAFTA corridor," and the U.S., Canada and Mexico should really be one economy. Both publicly and privately, NASCO brushes off the supposedly sinister nature of their project, which they say is intended to benefit the economy and alleviate congestion. Also MnDOT provided NASCO an index of projects along I-35 and I-94 in an effort to get NASCO's Washington lobbyists to coordinate better funding.

Also released were NASCO public relations documents describing how to spin media coverage, and MnDOT emails about media incidents. Oddly, NASCO distributed PR material disambiguating themselves, the cross-border Security and Prosperity Partnership, and even the Council on Foreign Relations, among their materials sent to Minnesota.

Interestingly, NASCO discusses an advanced systems integration platform called NAFTRACS (North American Facilitation of Transportation, Trade, Reduced Congestion and Security Project), which would be developed by SAVI, a subsidiary of Lockheed Martin, which already handles shipping container logistics for the Pentagon's Global Transportation Network. The NAFTRACS "integration pilot program will automatically gather, correlate, and interpret fragments of multi-source (Radar, AIS, & GPS tracks, Open Source, Intelligence, Watch list & Law Enforcement Report, CCTV, Bioterrorism sensors) data together into one collaborative portal-based environment, an [sic] ultimately a Total Transportation Domain Awareness Center of Excellence." The NASCO Center of Excellence and Total Domain Awareness Center would be the "centerpiece of the corridor coalition; will engage in studies, development and deployment activities; will seek funding & investment for a broad array of projects relevant to both the corridor and of current & national significance," including "the US-Mexico-Canada Security and Prosperity Partnership (SPP); Hurricane Katrina/Rita impact; Cross-border trade facilitation and information sharing; inland ports network; counter-terrorism and security." In the last couple PDF files, the development of NAFTRACS through Lockheed Martin's advanced military-oriented research facility in Virginia is discussed at length.

PIM hasn't heard anything about this project through the grapevine; only nativist and conservative media outlets (what some would dub "right wing whacko") have focused on plans for continental integration. It seems unlikely that massive superhighways will be built along I-35, but still, it's quite interesting to examine the flurry of communications, message management and cross-border integration exposed by this set of documents. Check out the raw material; it's really quite unusual and informative. While activists in Texas and Oklahoma are raising a ruckus about the potential Rondoization of their counties, Minnesotans would be wise to look south and keep an eye out.

**********

Well that's it everyone. Have a good time, I will see you in two weeks. Thanks for visiting! And check out PoliticsInMinnesota to see how they pull it off when I'm gone!

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