Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Expansion of the terrorist watchlist requires neither “concrete facts” nor “irrefutable evidence”

Well, well, well, back in 2004 my husband had about 100 books laying open on his desk and his auxiliary desk (the kitchen table), each one completely filled wit

h sticky tabs, bookmarks, torn strips of paper and thousands of little notes.


His paper, Solving the Puzzle of Enemy Combatant Status, was the product of those endless nights of note scribbling and is a brilliant fucking masterpiece (and like most masterpieces also really fucking depressing).






It basically lays out predictions of how looking for Taliban terrorists back in 2001 would eventually devolve into rounding up anyone who supports individual freedom as a terrorist and what it would look like. Spoiler Alert; it looks a lot like this shit right here.


We should turn this into a drinking game. Take a drink every time you're declared an extremist, a shot when you make a watchlist, drain the bottle when supporting the constitution gets a terrorist label slapped on your forehead.








-Tasha



The Secret Government Rulebook For Labeling You a Terrorist

The Obama administration has quietly approved a substantial expansion of the terrorist watchlist system, authorizing a secret process that requires neither “concrete facts” nor “irrefutable evidence” to designate an American or foreigner as a terrorist, according to a key government document obtained by The Intercept.

The “March 2013 Watchlisting Guidance,” a 166-page document issued last year by the National Counterterrorism Center, spells out the government’s secret rules for putting individuals on its main terrorist database, as well as the no fly list and the selectee list, which triggers enhanced screening at airports and border crossings. The new guidelines allow individuals to be designated as representatives of terror organizations without any evidence they are actually connected to such organizations, and it gives a single White House official the unilateral authority to place “entire categories” of people the government is tracking onto the no fly and selectee lists. It broadens the authority of government officials to “nominate” people to the watchlists based on what is vaguely described as “fragmentary information.” It also allows for dead people to be watchlisted.

Over the years, the Obama and Bush Administrations have fiercely resisted disclosing the criteria for placing names on the databases—though the guidelines are officially labeled as unclassified. In May, Attorney General Eric Holder even invoked the state secrets privilege to prevent watchlisting guidelines from being disclosed in litigation launched by an American who was on the no fly list. In an affidavit, Holder called them a “clear roadmap” to the government’s terrorist-tracking apparatus, adding: “The Watchlisting Guidance, although unclassified, contains national security information that, if disclosed … could cause significant harm to national security.” Continue here

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