David Slesinger's blog

Teens who lost loved ones to terror unite at Mass. camp

http://photoblog.msnbc.msn.com/_news/2012/07/19/12829367-teens-who-lost-loved-ones-to-terror-unite-at-mass-camp

Teens who lost loved ones to terror unite at Mass. camp

Charles Krupa / AP
Habiba Abubakar of Nigeria, right, talks with psychologist and faculty member Yaron Prywes while attending the "Common Bond" summer camp in Newbury, Mass., on July 18, 2012. Teens from across the world who lost loved ones due to terrorism gathered for the 10 day camp to share their feelings, insights and a chance to be the world's next generation of international peacemakers. Abubakar lost her father during the Jos religious riots in 2010.

Teens from across the world who lost loved ones due to terrorism have gathered at a Massachusetts boarding school for a 10 day summer camp to share their feelings and reach out to peers who have suffered similar losses, The Associated Press reports.
Project Common Bond, which is now in its fifth year, is part of the New York-based nonprofit Tuesday's Children, which helps families of victims of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.
Children on 9/11, Marines 10 years later

Media oppose Guantánamo hearing closure

http://www.miamiherald.com/2012/07/13/2894381/media-opposes-guantanamo-hearing.html

Posted on Fri, Jul. 13, 2012
Media oppose Guantánamo hearing closure

By CAROL ROSENBERG
crosenberg@miamiherald.com

CAROL ROSENBERG/ THE MIAMI HERAL
The American flag flies at half-staff at the military commissions at the U.S. Navy base at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, on Sept. 11, 2008. This is the only courthouse that the military permits media to photograph at Camp Justice. Imagery outside the building where death-penalty hearings are held is forbidden.
Media organizations filed a motion Thursday opposing a Pentagon prosecution proposal to close portions of the hearings next week at Guantánamo in the USS Cole bombing death-penalty case.
At least 15 legal motions are on the agenda for the three-day hearing in the military commissions case of Saudi-born Abd al Rahim al Nashiri. He’s accused of orchestrating the October 2000 suicide bombing of the warship in the port of Aden, Yemen, that killed 17 U.S. sailors. Judge James Pohl, an Army colonel, is to decide issues that range from defense funding to whether to disqualify himself and appoint another military judge to the case.

Newly Released CIA Documents Show 9-11 Warnings Before Attack

http://www.topsecretwriters.com/2012/07/newly-released-cia-documents-show-9-11-warnings-before-attack/

Could 9/11 have been prevented?

Up until now the common sentiment was that the 9/11 attacks came as a complete shock to the U.S., which had no idea that the devastation that happened on September 11, 2001 was going to occur.

However, a trove of documents have been released concerning Osama bin Laden and terrorist attacks that paints an alarming picture that President Bush had actually been warned of an imminent attack, but had chosen to ignore the warnings.

The CIA documents are newly declassified and have been released to the National Security Archive. The documents are available to read on DocumentCloud, a document uploading site that gives users access to extensive information about organizations, people and places.

The highly damning documents provide readers with a clearer account of U.S. knowledge about the possibility of its country being attacked, which blatantly contradicts claims made by Bush officials, that the U.S. government was aggressively pursuing bin Laden and al-Qaida prior to 9/11 and that nobody could have predicted the 9/11 attacks.

Revisiting 100% Inspection

http://www.rand.org/blog/2012/07/revisiting-100-percent-inspection.html

Last week in a New York Times op-ed, Congressmen Jerrold L. Nadler, Edward J. Markey, and Bennie G. Thompson made a plea for the Obama administration to fully implement the Secure Freight Initiative to comply with Section 232 of the Safe Ports Act of 2006. This provision in the law mandates that 100 percent of cargo containers shipped from overseas to U.S. ports be scanned using noninvasive imaging (e.g., x-ray machines) and radiation detection equipment. Since its passage, this requirement has been among the most highly politicized and poorly understood provisions of homeland security law.

Like the congressmen, advocates of 100 percent inspection of U.S.-bound containers paint a picture of a looming catastrophe. My early analysis of securing the global supply chain described how the system's vastness both drives the global economy and makes it an attractive way to move illicit materials.

WHAT TO DO IF THE FBI OR DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY WANTS TO QUESTION YOU

http://www.aclu-nj.org/files/6113/1540/4577/FBIHomelandQuestions.pdf

WHAT TO DO IF THE FBI OR DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY WANTS TO QUESTION YOU
The FBI and other law enforcement agencies are increasing their attempts to question and monitor many people over the next few weeks and months. Keep the following tips in mind if this affects you.
When law enforcement officers ask you to answer questions:
• If you are approached in person by an officer, ask if you are "free to leave." If you are, consider walking away. If officers come to your home, you do not have to answer the door or let them in unless they have a warrant from a court authorizing them to search your home. You can ask them to leave a business card under the door and tell them you will call them if you decide to talk to them.
• Ask if the interview is "voluntary." If you are told that it is your decision whether to be interviewed, consider saying "no." • You have the right to remain silent and not answer questions, even if you are not free to leave.

We Mustn't Allow Muslims in Public Life to be Silenced

http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article31823.htm

We Mustn't Allow Muslims in Public Life to be Silenced

Even in polite society, fear-mongering, negative stereotyping and abuse are now out of control – as I know from bitter experience

By Mehdi Hasan

July 12, 2012 "The Guardian' - - Have you ever been called an Islamist? How about a jihadist or a terrorist? Extremist, maybe? Welcome to my world. It's pretty depressing. Every morning, I take a deep breath and then go online to discover what new insult or smear has been thrown in my direction. Whether it's tweets, blogposts or comment threads, the abuse is as relentless as it is vicious.

You might think I'd have become used to it by now. Well, I haven't. When I started writing for a living, I never imagined I'd be the victim of such personal, such Islamophobic, attacks, on a near-daily basis. On joining the New Statesman in 2009, I was promptly subjected to an online smear campaign, involving a series of selectively edited videos of speeches I'd delivered in front of groups of Muslim university students several years ago. I was accused of being a "secret" member of the extremist group Hizb ut-Tahrir, and a "dangerous Muslim shithead" in the "same genre" as the Nazis. The post that sticks in my mind is from the blogger who referred to me as a "moderate cockroach" whose Islamic faith was "no different from the Islam of Abu Hamza, Abu Qatada, Ayman al-Zawahiri, Anjem Choudary or any of the 'tiny minority' of Islamic terrorists who believe that Islam must dominate, no matter what the cost".

Three years later, as I leave the New Statesman to join the Huffington Post UK, little seems to have changed. "Huffington Post's new UK political director brings pro-Iran baggage," screamed the headline on the Fox News website back in late May. My "baggage"? I once publicly praised a fatwa from Iran's supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, forbidding the production of nuclear weapons. Shame on me! Another ultra-conservative US news website, the Washington Free Beacon, referred to me as the "HuffPo's house jihadi".

Glenn Greenwald: How America's Surveillance State Breeds Conformity and Fear

http://www.alternet.org/story/156170/glenn_greenwald%3A_how_america%27s_surveillance_state_breeds_conformity_and_fear?akid...

Once the government is able to monitor everything we do and say, we will be unable to fight back.
July 4, 2012 |

Editor's note: The following is a transcript of a speech delivered by Glenn Greenwald at this month's Socialism 2012 conference, on the massive growth of government and corporate surveillance and their chilling effects on Americans' rights.

Last year was my maiden trip to the Socialism 2012 world. I started off by standing up and saying -- I was actually surprised by this, pleasantly surprised, because I didn’t know what to expect -- how amazingly inspirational I actually found this conference to be. The energy of activism and the sophisticated level of the conversation and the commitment that people displayed and the diversity of the attendees, really is unlike any other conference. And so when I was asked back this year, I was super excited to come back and accept. Not only because of that, but also because the conference organizers asked if I could speak about challenging the Surveillance State.

The reason that I was so eager to come and do that is because I really think that this topic is central to all of the other activism that’s being discussed here this weekend.

The Surveillance State hovers over any attacks that meaningfully challenge state-appropriated power. It doesn’t just hover over it. It impedes it, it deters it and kills it. That’s its intent. It does that by design.

And so, understanding what the Surveillance State, how it operates -- most importantly, figuring out how to challenge it and undermine it, and subvert it -- really is, I think, an absolute prerequisite to any sort of meaningful activism, to developing strategies and tactics for how to challenge state and corporate power.

Newly Released CIA Documents Show 9-11 Warnings Before Attack

http://www.topsecretwriters.com/2012/07/newly-released-cia-documents-show-9-11-warnings-before-attack/

Newly Released CIA Documents Show 9-11 Warnings Before Attack

Could 9/11 have been prevented?

Up until now the common sentiment was that the 9/11 attacks came as a complete shock to the U.S., which had no idea that the devastation that happened on September 11, 2001 was going to occur.

However, a trove of documents have been released concerning Osama bin Laden and terrorist attacks that paints an alarming picture that President Bush had actually been warned of an imminent attack, but had chosen to ignore the warnings.

The CIA documents are newly declassified and have been released to the National Security Archive. The documents are available to read on DocumentCloud, a document uploading site that gives users access to extensive information about organizations, people and places.

The highly damning documents provide readers with a clearer account of U.S. knowledge about the possibility of its country being attacked, which blatantly contradicts claims made by Bush officials, that the U.S. government was aggressively pursuing bin Laden and al-Qaida prior to 9/11 and that nobody could have predicted the 9/11 attacks.

From June until August 2001 a series of documents made clear reference to bin Laden, and his associates impending attack on the U.S.

New York regulator seeks data from insurers in 9/11 case

http://www.foxnews.com/us/2012/07/04/new-york-regulator-seeks-data-from-insurers-in-11-case/

ALBANY, N.Y. – New York's top insurance regulator has directed insurers to detail payouts and reserves for claims in the 2001 World Trade Center attacks in an effort to prompt settlement of the decade-old federal case.
Benjamin Lawsky, superintendent of the Department of Financial Services, says in a letter that ongoing claims against the two airlines and security companies, following the terrorist attack on the twin towers in Manhattan, has slowed redevelopment and "undermined public confidence in the insurance industry."
Developer Larry Silverstein has complained to the department about gridlock in settlement negotiations.
Federal law limited the insurers' liability and created a special fund that paid victim claims.
Remaining insurer liability is estimated at about $2 billion.
Lawsky also seeks the insurers' investment return rates since 2002 and their itemized bailout benefits.
Print Close

Read more: http://www.foxnews.com/us/2012/07/04/new-york-regulator-seeks-data-from-insurers-in-11-case/print#ixzz1zkoR2yWd

Morsi Says He Will Work for Release of Sheik Jailed in U.S.

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/06/30/world/middleeast/morsi-promises-to-work-for-release-of-omar-abdel-rahman.html?_r=2&pagew...

Morsi Says He Will Work for Release of Sheik Jailed in U.S.

Tomas Munita for The New York Times
President-elect Mohamed Morsi of the Muslim Brotherhood spoke to hundreds of thousands of supporters in Tahrir Square on Friday. More Photos »
By DAVID D. KIRKPATRICK
Published: June 29, 2012 83 Comments

CAIRO — President-elect Mohamed Morsi of the Muslim Brotherhood pre-empted the military’s choreographed swearing-in ceremony by taking an oath of office a day early on Friday, in a televised speech to tens of thousands of supporters in Tahrir Square.
Multimedia

Slide Show
Egyptian President-Elect Addresses Nation From Tahrir Square
Related

The Lede Blog: Just Off Tahrir Square, Protesters Demand Release of Blind Sheik Jailed in U.S. (June 29, 2012)
Related in Opinion

Op-Ed Contributor: How Egypt’s Army Won (June 30, 2012)

But a promise Mr. Morsi made as part of his speech may provoke Washington: to work for the release of Sheik Omar Abdel Rahman, the Egyptian-born militant Islamist convicted after the 1993 World Trade Center attack of plotting to bomb several New York City landmarks.

Mr. Morsi referred briefly to Mr. Abdel Rahman in an almost offhand aside in the context of a vow to free Egyptian civilians imprisoned here after military trials under the rule of the generals. “I see signs for Omar Abdel Rahman and detainees’ pictures,” he said. “It is my duty and I will make all efforts to have them free, including Omar Abdel Rahman.”

A Brotherhood spokesman said later that Mr. Morsi intended to ask federal officials in the United States to have Mr. Abdel Rahman extradited to Egypt on humanitarian grounds. He was not seeking to have Mr. Abdel Rahman’s convictions overturned or calling him a political prisoner.

An Obama administration official, speaking on the condition of anonymity, shrugged it all off as empty talk, saying, “There is zero chance this happens.”

Schedule at Occupy National Gathering in Philadelphia

Monday, July 2 3:00pm - 4:00pm
IL3) Wayne Coste - Breaking Through the Wall of Silence; Why the Events of 9/11 Matter to Occupy

Monday, July 2 4:15pm - 5:15pm
IL4) David Slesinger - Nonviolent Resistance on the US Can be Practiced with
Greater Strength
See transcript of longer presentation on same topic from US Social Forum
http://nonviolentresistancecanbestronger.blogspot.com/

Airlines, TSA seeking advanced security screening devices

http://www.nypost.com/p/news/local/screen_lite_Dni0M8TlGiXyhM2zQH0jTL

Updated: Mon., Jun. 25, 2012, 7:08 AM
Airlines, TSA seeking advanced security screening devices
By BILL SANDERSON
Last Updated: 7:08 AM, June 25, 2012
Posted: 1:28 AM, June 25, 2012
Fliers may soon be saying goodbye to annoying airport security lines — and hello to a sci-fi future of high-tech safety screening.

In the next seven to 10 years, passengers will be able to breeze through security without even noticing they’re being electronically scanned for weapons and contraband, if airport security experts have their way.

No longer will passengers have to suffer the indignity of pulling off shoes and belts. They will go through a security experience that seems more like passing through a hallway than enduring the angry cluster of humanity they are familiar with today.

“We see it as a walk-through process,” said Perry Flint of the International Air Transport Association, an airline group.

Instead of metal detectors, software hooked up to video cameras will ensure safety by assessing passengers mannerisms to help screeners determine whether they’re threats.

And security screeners will identify passengers through biometric finger scans or eye scans instead of passports and driver’s licenses. Weapons will be identified by remote machines that will not require a trip through a traditional metal detector.

“We see screening technology that means you are not taking your coat off, and you are not taking your computer out of its case,” Flint said.

Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood Call For New 9/11 Investigation

http://members.beforeitsnews.com/story/2301/979/Egypts_Muslim_Brotherhood_Call_For_New_9_11_Investigation.html

Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood Call For New 9/11 Investigation
June 24, 2012 5:58

Egypt’s new president, Mohamed Morsi has long called for the U.S. to hold a “scientific conference” to determine the real culprits of the Sept. 11 attacks, having cast doubt on al Qaeda’s role in 9/11 for years.

“The U.S. administration has never presented any evidences on the identity of those who committed that incident,” longtime Muslim Brotherhood leader Mohamed Morsi is quoted as saying in a 2007 posting on Ikhwanweb, the Islamist group’s official English website.

“The Muslim Brotherhood and others demanded a transparent trial with clear evidence and to have court rulings,” he said after the sixth anniversary of the attacks that killed nearly 3,000 people. “We confirm that this isn’t a defense to those who committed these actions, but we only seek the truth.”

2008 MB Article: www.ikhwanweb.com/article.php?id=15325&ref=search.php

Declassified document contradicts Cheney’s claim of Iraqi connection to 9/11

Well, what we now have that’s developed since you and I last talked, Tim, of course, was that report that’s been pretty well confirmed, that he did go to Prague and he did meet with a senior official of the Iraqi intelligence service in Czechoslovakia last April, several months before the
http://www.rawstory.com/rs/2012/06/20/declassified-document-contradicts-cheneys-claim-of-iraqi-connection-to-911/ Page 1 of 8
Declassified document contradicts Cheney’s claim of Iraqi connection to 9/11 | The Raw Story 6/21/12 7:31 AM
Cheney’s claim was one of the strongest rhetorical links between the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001 and Iraq in the administration’s arguments for war, even though it was refuted by the CIA more than once. The initial allegation reportedly came from misinformed Czech intelligence agents, and almost became part of a 2003 speech by the president — a plan that was scrapped after the CIA station in Prague issued a still-classified cable insisting that it was not
true.

Anthrax alert system at risk as cost estimate hits $5.7 billion

http://www.washingtonpost.com/business/economy/anthrax-alert-system-at-risk-as-cost-estimate-hits-57-billion/2012/06/18/gJ...

Anthrax alert system at risk as cost estimate hits $5.7 billion

By Carol Wolf, Published: June 18

Funding for BioWatch, an early warning system to detect deadly pathogens in 30 U.S. cities, may be in jeopardy after cost estimates surged to $5.7 billion, six times the initial assessment.

The Department of Homeland Security wants to open bidding before October on the next phase of the program, which monitors the air for pathogens such as anthrax and smallpox.

The five-year contract for as much as $3.1 billion would upgrade the system to automatically transmit collected data to laboratories, eliminating the present manual handling.

BioWatch has suffered cost overruns and delays since then-President George W. Bush, prompted by the post-Sept. 11, 2001, anthrax attacks, started it in 2003. Rep. Gus Bilirakis (R-Fla.), chairman of the House subcommittee with jurisdiction over BioWatch, says he wants assurances that costs are under control and has asked the Government Accountability Office to analyze the proposed spending.

“The program could find itself in danger of being cut back or completely scrapped if law­makers determine that it’s becoming a major and costly acquisition failure,’’ Jessica Herrera-Flanigan, a partner with Monument Policy Group, a Washington-based consulting firm, said in a telephone interview. Herrera-Flanigan was staff director for the House Homeland Security Committee from 2005 through 2008.