Archive for the Homeland Security Category

Soldiers told evangelical Christians and Tea Party are threat to nation

Posted in Anti-Christian Bigotry, Army, Homeland Security with tags , , , , , , , , , , on October 23, 2013 by saynsumthn

With in weeks of the Pentagon admitted that information used in an Army briefing labeled the American Family Association (AFA) as a domestic hate group but claimed it was not acquired from official sources and does not reflect Army doctrine, soldiers at Ft Hood were told similar things.

According to Todd Starnes, Soldiers attending a pre-deployment briefing at Fort Hood say they were told that evangelical Christians and members of the Tea Party were a threat to the nation and that any soldier donating to those groups would be subjected to punishment under the Uniform Code of Military Justice.

A soldier who attended the Oct. 17th briefing told me the counter-intelligence agent in charge of the meeting spent nearly a half hour discussing how evangelical Christians and groups like the American Family Association were “tearing the country apart.”

Michael Berry, an attorney with the Liberty Institute, is advising the soldier and has launched an investigation into the incident.

Another soldier who attended the briefing alerted the Chaplain Alliance for Religious Liberty. That individual’s recollections of the briefing matched the soldier who reached out to me.

“I was very shocked and couldn’t believe what I was hearing,” the soldier said. “I felt like my religious liberties, that I risk my life and sacrifice time away from family to fight for, were being taken away.”

And while a large portion of the briefing dealt with the threat evangelicals and the Tea Party pose to the nation, barely a word was said about Islamic extremism, the soldier said.

Read more

In August of 2013, Muslimsoldier Maj. Nidal Malik Hasan was sentenced to death for killing 13 people and wounding 32 others in a 2009 shooting rampage at Fort Hood, Tex., the worst mass murder at a military installation in U.S. history.

Also read: Homeland Security Improperly Collected Intelligence on Pro-Lifers and other U.S. Citizens

Read: Pentagon Blocks Access to Southern Baptist Website

READ: Military commander says Christians a threat to national security

TSA to expand pre-check screening at airports to sporting events, music festivals, rodeos and train terminals

Posted in Homeland Security, TSA with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 22, 2013 by saynsumthn

The TSA is expanding its passenger screening process, according to a report in the New York Times. The TSA will use government and private records in order to pre-screen fliers and streamline the security process.

According to the New York Times, the agency says that the goal is to streamline the security procedures for millions of passengers who pose no risk, the new measures give the government greater authority to use travelers’ data for domestic airport screenings. Previously that level of scrutiny applied only to individuals entering the United States.

The prescreening, some of which is already taking place, is described in documents the T.S.A. released to comply with government regulations about the collection and use of individuals’ data, but the details of the program have not been publicly announced.

It is unclear precisely what information the agency is relying upon to make these risk assessments, given the extensive range of records it can access, including tax identification number, past travel itineraries, property records, physical characteristics, and law enforcement or intelligence information.

The measures go beyond the background check the government has conducted for years, called Secure Flight, in which a passenger’s name, gender and date of birth are compared with terrorist watch lists. Now, the search includes using a traveler’s passport number, which is already used to screen people at the border, and other identifiers to access a system of databases maintained by the Department of Homeland Security.

Privacy groups contacted by The New York Times expressed concern over the security agency’s widening reach.

The Transportation and Security Administration is expanding its’ reach to sporting events, music festivals, rodeos and train terminals. It’s all part of the TSA’s Intermodal Prevention and Response Squad (VIPR). However, complaints about TSA misconduct have increased by 27 % in the last two year, per a recent Government Accountability Office report. Michael Brooks, Producers producer for The Majority Report joins us to discuss whether the TSA is really the best situated agency to search Americans everywhere they go.

Critics argue that the problem with what the TSA calls an “intelligence-driven, risk-based analysis” of passenger data is that secret computer rules, not humans, make these determinations. Civil liberties groups have questioned whether the agency has the legal authority to make these assessments, which the T.S.A. has claimed in Federal Register notices and privacy disclosures about the initiative. Privacy advocates have also disputed whether computer algorithms can accurately predict terrorist intent.

The airline industry has supported the expansion of PreCheck and using data about travelers to decide who should receive more or less scrutiny at checkpoints, to reduce security bottlenecks and focus resources on higher-risk passengers.

At the heart of the expanded effort is a database called the Automated Targeting System, which is maintained by the Department of Homeland Security and screens travelers entering the United States.

Data in the Automated Targeting System is used to decide who is placed on the no-fly list — thousands of people the United States government has banned from flying — and the selectee list, an unknown number of travelers who are required to undergo more in-depth screening, like Mr. Darrat. The T.S.A. also maintains a PreCheck disqualification list, tracking people accused of violating security regulations, including disputes with checkpoint or airline staff members.

Much of this personal data is widely shared within the Department of Homeland Security and with other government agencies. Privacy notices for these databases note that the information may be shared with federal, state and local authorities; foreign governments; law enforcement and intelligence agencies — and in some cases, private companies for purposes unrelated to security or travel.

For instance, an update about the T.S.A.’s Transportation Security Enforcement Record System, which contains information about travelers accused of “violations or potential violations” of security regulations, warns that the records may be shared with “a debt collection agency for the purpose of debt collection.”

A recent privacy notice about PreCheck notes that fingerprints submitted by people who apply for the program will be used by the F.B.I. to check its unsolved crimes database.

“The average person doesn’t understand how much intelligence-driven matching is going on and how this could be accessed for other purposes,” said Khaliah Barnes, a lawyer with the Electronic Privacy Information Center, which has fought to block these initiatives. “There’s no meaningful oversight, transparency or accountability.”

For travelers who feel they have been wrongly placed on some type of watch list or experienced security screening problems, the Department of Homeland Security has established a Traveler Redress Inquiry Program. According to a review by the department’s Privacy Office, there were at least 13,000 inquiries to the redress program in the nine months ending March 31, but civil liberties groups and some travelers described the redress process as a black hole.

“A lot of people I know have tried it,” Mr. Darrat said. “And it just doesn’t really make a difference.”

Is Obama Administration is turning military against people? Military calls Christian Org Domestic Hate Group

Posted in Hate Crimes, Homeland Security, Military, US Military with tags , , , , , , , on October 14, 2013 by saynsumthn

Todd Starnes

From Todd Starnes, “Friends – the Obama Administration is turning the military against the people, We need to SHARE this very important story.”

US Military660-Starnes-AFA-briefingSeveral dozen U.S. Army active duty and reserve troops were told last week that the American Family Association, a well-respected Christian ministry, should be classified as a domestic hate group because the group advocates for traditional family values.

The briefing was held at Camp Shelby in Mississippi and listed the AFA alongside domestic hate groups like the Ku Klux Klan, Neo-Nazis, the Black Panthers and the Nation of Islam.

A soldier who attended the briefing contacted Todd Starnes and sent me a photograph of a slide show presentation that listed AFA as a domestic hate group. Under the AFA headline is a photograph of Westboro Baptist Church preacher Fred Phelps holding a sign reading “No special law for f***.”

American Family Association has absolutely no affiliation with the controversial church group known for picketing the funerals of American servicemembers.

It looks like the Obama administration is separating the military from the American people.
“I had to show Americans what our soldiers are now being taught,” said the soldier who asked not to be identified. “I couldn’t just let this one pass.”

The soldier said a chaplain interrupted the briefing and challenged the instructor’s assertion that AFA is a hate group.

“The instructor said AFA could be considered a hate group because they don’t like gays,” the soldier told me. “The slide was talking about how AFA refers to gays as sinners and heathens and derogatory terms.”

The soldier, who is an evangelical Christian, said the chaplain defended the Christian ministry.

“He kept asking the instructor, ‘Are you sure about that, son? Are you sure about that?’” he said, recalling the back and forth.

Later in the briefing, the soldiers were reportedly told that they could face punishment for participating in organizations that are considered hate groups.

That considered, the soldier contacted me because he is a financial contributor to the AFA ministry.

“I donate to AFA as often as I can,” he said. “Am I going to be punished? I listen to American Family Radio all day. If they hear it on my radio, will I be faced with a Uniformed Code of Military Justice charge?”

The soldier said he was “completely taken back by this blatant attack not only on the AFA but Christians and our beliefs.”

It’s not the first time the Army has accused conservative Christian groups of being domestic hate groups.

Read rest here

Read here Here HERE Here HERE

NSA and DEA collaboration on spying on Americans

Posted in DEA, Homeland Security, NSA, Special Operations Division with tags , , , , , , , , , on August 7, 2013 by saynsumthn

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.”

Read more at Reuters

Pentagon Blocks Access to Southern Baptist Website

Posted in Homeland Security, Pentagon, Religion, Religious Freedom with tags , , , , on April 25, 2013 by saynsumthn

Pentagon Blocks Access to Southern Baptist Website

Apr 24, 2013
By Todd Starnes
The U.S. Military has blocked access to the Southern Baptist Convention’s website on an unknown number of military bases because it contains “hostile content” — just weeks after an Army briefing labeled Evangelical Christians and Roman Catholics as examples of religious extremism, Fox News has learned.

The Southern Baptist Convention is the nation’s largest Protestant denomination known for its support of the pro-life movement and its strong belief in traditional marriage.
Southern Baptist chaplains reported that SBC.net had been blocked at military installations around the nation. The censorship was made public after an Army officer tried to log onto the denomination’s website and instead — received a warning message.

“The site you have requested has been blocked by Team CONUS (C-TNOSC/RCERT-CONUS) due to hostile content,” the message read.

Team CONUS protects the computer network of the Dept. of Defense. The SBC’s website was not blocked at the Pentagon.

It’s unclear what the “hostile content” might have been. The SBC is pro-life and opposed to same-sex marriage.

“So the Southern Baptist Convention is now considered hostile to the U.S. Army,” the officer wrote in an email to the American Family Association.
Sing Oldham, spokesman for the SBC, told Fox News he had been in touch with the Dept. of Defense and had serious concerns.

“This is deeply disturbing,” he told Fox News. “While the Deputy Chief of Operation of the US Army has assured us this is a random event with no malicious intent, the Army must run this to the ground to assure that this is the case.”

However, Fox News has received reports from across the country of Southern Baptist chaplains unable to access the website.

“If the government blocked any portion of the SBC.net Web site for any purpose, that would be an unconscionable breach of trust with the American public,” Oldham said. “The First Amendment exists to protect the church from governmental censorship of or infringement upon religious speech and the free exercise of religion.”

The Dept. of Defense confirmed to Fox News late Wednesday that the SBC website had been blocked — but not intentionally.

TODD’S AMERICAN DISPATCHES IS MUST-HAVE MATERIAL FOR AMERICAN PATRIOTS. CICK HERE FOR YOUR FREE COPY!

“The Department of Defense is not intentionally blocking access to this site, said Lt. Col. Damien Pickart. “We are working diligently to investigate what might be causing access issues for some of our service members and to correct the situation as quickly as possible.”

The AFA sent out an action alert urging its members to contact the Pentagon and ask them to “stop the military’s alarming trend of hostility towards faith and religious freedom in our military.”

“Most disturbing to him (the Army officer) was the fact that the military labeled his personal religious faith as ‘hostile’ to the U.S. Army,” AFA spokesman Randy Sharp told Fox News.

Ron Crews, executive director of the Chaplain Alliance for Religious Liberty, told Fox News that Southern Baptist chaplains on military bases around the nation have been unable to access the website.

“It’s a concern for the Dept. of Defense to block the website of one of the major evangelical denominations in the country,” Crews told Fox News. “The Southern Baptist Convention has the largest number of chaplains in the military representing Southern Baptist soldiers and churches. Those chaplains need access to their denomination’s website.”
An Army Reservist contacted Fox News and said he tried to log onto the site and an “Access Denied” message appeared on the screen.

“You request was categorized by Blue Coat Web Filter as ‘Religion,’” the message read.

Richard Land, president of the SBC’s Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission denounced the censorship and demanded that Southern Baptist soldiers be provided access to the site.
“This is outrageous,” Land told Fox News. “Southern Baptists make up a higher percentage of the all-volunteer military than in the general population. It’s outrageous that our website would be blocked for Southern Baptists serving in the military and defending the freedom to access websites.”

Land said the military censorship was part of a “disturbing trend.”

“They need to unblock the website and find out who is responsible,” he said. “That person needs to be fired.”

Pickart told Fox News the Dept. of Defense “strongly supports the rights of service members, to include their ability to access religious websites like that of the SBC.”
“With Internet technology constantly evolving, the Department is working to ensure that service members have access to an open Internet while preserving information and operational security,” he said.

Religious liberty groups were outraged by the block and called for an immediate investigation.

“This is another example of the growing hostility toward evangelical Christians in the armed forces,” Lt. Gen. (Ret.) Jerry Boykin, executive vice president of the Family Research Council told Fox News. “Ironically, the very people who are sworn to support and defend the rights provided in the U.S. Constitution are being denied the right to exercise those rights individually.”

The American Family Association feared it was further evidence of what they called religious hostility within the Pentagon.

“This is one more example of the Defense Department leadership allowing hostility towards faith and religious freedom in our military,” Sharp told Fox News. “The growing list of offenses is overwhelming and Secretary Chuck Hagel should no longer ignore it.”

In recent days, the Army has come under fire after an officer sent an email to subordinates labeling the AFA and the Family Research Council as “domestic hate groups.”
In another incident a group of Army Reservists were told that Evangelical Christians and Catholics are examples of religious extremists.
The Army categorized the incidents as isolated and not condoned by the Dept. of the Army. They said the presentation to the reservists was not produced by the Army nor did it reflect their policy or doctrine.

Last week, soldiers at Fort Wainwright in Alaska were told to scrape off a Bible verse reference on their weapon scopes. That verse had been inscribed by the maker of the scopes.
Among other incidents:
• A War Games scenario at Fort Leavenworth that identified Christian groups and Evangelical groups as being potential threats;
• A 2009 Dept. of Homeland Security memorandum that identified future threats to national security coming from Evangelicals and pro-life groups;
• A West Point study released by the U.S. Military Academy’s Combating Terrorism Center that linked pro-lifers to terrorism;
• Evangelical leader Franklin Graham was uninvited from the Pentagon’s National Day of Prayer service because of his comments about Islam;
• Christian prayers were banned at the funeral services for veterans at Houston’s National Cemetery;
• Bibles were banned at Walter Reed Army Medical Center – a decision that was later rescinded;
• Christian crosses and a steeple were removed from a chapel in Afghanistan because the military said the icons disrespected other religions;
• Catholic chaplains were told not to read a letter to parishioners from their archbishop related to Obamacare mandates. The Secretary of the Army feared the letter could be viewed as a call for civil disobedience.

“All of these things make one concerned about the attitude in the military toward evangelicals, Roman Catholics and other people of faith,” Crews said. “He are hoping the military makes every necessary step to correct this.”

The incidents led more than 40 members of Congress to write the Secretary of the Army earlier this month demanding an explanation and an apology.

“This is astonishing and offensive,” read a written by Rep. Doug Lamborn (R-CO). “We call on you to rescind this briefing and apologize for its content and set the record straight on the Army’s view on these faith groups by providing a balanced briefing on religious extremism.”

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Todd Starnes: Military commander says Christians a threat to national security

Posted in Homeland Security with tags , , , , , , on April 10, 2013 by saynsumthn

UPDATE:

The Pentagon has admitted that information used in an Army briefing that labeled the American Family Association (AFA) as a domestic hate group was not acquired from official sources and does not reflect Army doctrine.

Meanwhile, the president of the well-respected Christian ministry says his organization may file a defamation lawsuit against the military.

“We are probably going to be taking legal action,” said Tim Wildmon, president of one of the nation’s most prominent Christian ministries. “The Army has smeared us. They’ve defamed the American Family Association.”

Todd Starnes writes,

George Wright, an Army spokesman at the Pentagon, tells me the slide was not produced by the Army and it does not reflect their policy or doctrine.

“It was produced by a soldier conducting a briefing which included info acquired from an Internet search,” Wright said. “Info was not pulled from official Army sources, nor was it approved by senior Army leaders, senior equal opportunity counselors or judge-advocate personnel.”

Wright said the briefing has been updated and any references to American Family Association have been removed.

“The soldier, after being challenged on the information, recognized that the information was incorrect,” he said. “Soldiers who attended the briefing will be notified that the information regarding AFA was incorrect.”

Wildmon said he doesn’t believe the Army’s excuse.

“We’re hearing from too many people across the country who’ve witnessed these training sessions,” he said. “We know this is going on in the Army and the Air Force.”

Hiram Sasser, director of litigation for Liberty Institute, is representing the AFA. He said it’s a case of “fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me.”

“The Army is going to have to fess up,” he said. “For them to keep saying there are just a bunch of rogue instructors out there is either evidence they have a massive disciplinary problem or they are full of baloney.”

It’s not the first time the Army has accused conservative Christian groups of being domestic hate groups.

______________________
A U.S. Army officer sent an email to dozens of subordinates listing the American Family Association and Family Research Council as “domestic hate groups” because they oppose homosexuality — and warned officers to monitor soldiers who might be supporters of the groups.

“Just want to ensure everyone is somewhat educated on some of the groups out there that do not share our Army Values,” read an email from Lt. Col. Jack Rich to three dozen subordinates at Fort Campbell in Kentucky. “When we see behaviors that are inconsistent with Army Values – don’t just walk by – do the right thing and address the concern before it becomes a problem.”

Tony Perkins, president of the Family Research Council, told Fox News he was disturbed by the contents of the email.

“It’s very disturbing to see where the Obama Administration is taking the military and using it as a laboratory for social experimentation — and also as an instrument to fundamentally change the culture,” he said. “The message is very clear – if you are a Christian who believes in the Bible, who believes in transcendent truth, there is no place for you in the military.”

The Army denied there is any attack on Christians or those who hold religious beliefs.

“The notion that the Army is taking an anti-religion or anti-Christian stance is contrary to any of our policies, doctrines and regulations,” said George Wright, Army spokesman at the Pentagon. “Any belief that the Army is out to label religious groups in a negative manner is without warrant.”
Wright said they are checking into the origin of the email. At this point it’s unclear who ordered the email to be sent and why.
The 14-page email documented groups the military considers to be anti-gay, anti-immigrant and anti-Muslim. Among the other groups mentioned are Neo-Nazis, Racist Skinheads, White Nationalists and the Ku Klux Klan.

read rest

According to Clash Daily.com:

They recently received a letter from one of law enforcement’s finest. He had attended a seminar in which he was told to be on the lookout for Christians. The letter was written by an attendee, Ron Trowbridge, Undersheriff in Prowers County, Colorado. I would like to thank Sheriff Trowbridge for the letter and the 25 years he has spent protecting the public in his county. Fear of reprisals from either the Colorado State Police and Homeland Security, fail to stop this patriot from exposing what our law officers are being subjected to.

Because of his bravery, we are able to get an inside look on how nefarious forces within our government are attempting to indoctrinate our law officers. As this letter proves, our officers cannot be intimidated. Nor can they be turned on the people they serve. The people of Prowers County are very lucky to have him.
Without further delay, here is the letter unedited and complete in it’s original form:

From: rtrowbridge@prowerscounty.net To: forknown@hotmail.com Subject: CSP Training Date: Fri, 5 Apr 2013 10:30:22 -0600

On April 1, 2013 I attended training in La Junta, Colorado hosted by the Colorado State Patrol (CSP). The training was from 12:00 pm to 4:00 pm and covered two topics, Sovereign Citizens, and Outlaw Motorcycle Gangs. I was pretty familiar with motorcycle gangs but since we often deal with the so-called sovereign citizen groups I was interested to see what they had to say. The group consisted of police officers, deputies, and CSP troopers. There were about 20 people in attendance.

Trooper Joe Kluczynski taught a 2-hour section on sovereign citizens. Kluczynski spent most of his two hours focusing on how, in his view and apparently the view of Homeland Security, people turn to the sovereign citizen movement. Kluczynski started off by saying there are probably some sovereign citizens in this room and gave a generalized list of those groups that have sovereign citizen views. Among those groups, Kluczynski had listed, were those who believe America was founded on godly principles, Christians who take the Bible literally, and “fundamentalists”. Kluczynski did not explain what he meant by “fundamentalists” but from the context it was clear he was referring again to those who took the Bible literally or “too seriously.”

While Kluczynski emphasized that sovereign citizens have a right to their beliefs, he was clearly teaching that the groups he had listed should be watched by law enforcement and should be treated with caution because of their potential to assault law enforcement. Kluczynski explained why he believed these groups were dangerous saying they were angry over the election of a black president. When someone in the group suggested the failing economy was probably much more to blame, Kluczynski intimated that those who are not going along with the changes in America will need to be controlled by law enforcement. Kluczynski even later questioned some of the troopers present if they were willing and prepared to confiscate “illegal” weapons if ordered to.

Kluczynski’s assignment with the CSP was an Analyst for the Colorado Information Analysis Center, (CIAC). CIAC is funded by Homeland Security funds and run by the CSP. Kluczynski said he gets his information from the Department of Homeland Security. Kluczynski said he was leaving the CSP at the end of that week (March 29, 2013) to begin his new career with Homeland Security. I thought he was perfect for the job.

Ron Trowbridge
Undersheriff
Prowers County Sheriff’s Office

The Defense Department came under fire in April of 2013 for a U.S. Army Reserve presentation that classified Catholics and Evangelical Protestants as “extremist” religious groups alongside al Qaeda and the Ku Klux Klan.

The presentation detailed a number of extremist threats within the U.S. military, including white supremacist groups, street gangs, and religious sects.

The presentation identified seventeen religious organizations in a slide titled “religious extremism.” They include al Qaeda, Hamas, the Filipino separatist group Abu Sayyaf, and the Ku Klux Klan, which the slide identifies as a Christian organization.

DOD Religious Extremism Pg 24

“Religious extremism is not limited to any single religion, ethnic group, or region of the world,” the slide explains, in language that closely resembles the text of a Wikipedia page on “extremism.”

While outfits such as al Qaeda and the KKK are explicitly violent, the presentation also lists Catholicism and evangelical Protestantism as extremist groups.

More than half of all Americans identify themselves as members of those two Christian denominations.

Read more on how Homeland Security and the Government is labeling pro-lifers and Christians as terrorists (Here) and (Here)

DOD paints evangelical Christians and Catholics as terrorists and extremists

Posted in Homeland Security with tags , , , , , , on April 8, 2013 by saynsumthn

The Defense Department came under fire Thursday for a U.S. Army Reserve presentation that classified Catholics and Evangelical Protestants as “extremist” religious groups alongside al Qaeda and the Ku Klux Klan.

The presentation detailed a number of extremist threats within the U.S. military, including white supremacist groups, street gangs, and religious sects.

The presentation identified seventeen religious organizations in a slide titled “religious extremism.” They include al Qaeda, Hamas, the Filipino separatist group Abu Sayyaf, and the Ku Klux Klan, which the slide identifies as a Christian organization.

DOD Religious Extremism Pg 24

“Religious extremism is not limited to any single religion, ethnic group, or region of the world,” the slide explains, in language that closely resembles the text of a Wikipedia page on “extremism.”

While outfits such as al Qaeda and the KKK are explicitly violent, the presentation also lists Catholicism and evangelical Protestantism as extremist groups.

More than half of all Americans identify themselves as members of those two Christian denominations.

Read more on how Homeland Security and the Government is labeling pro-lifers and Christians as terrorists (Here) and (Here)