tagged w/ Defense
The online payment provider PayPal has frozen the account of Courage to Resist, which in collaboration with the Bradley Manning Support Network is currently raising funds in support of U.S. Army Pfc. Bradley Manning. PayPal was one way people–especially international residents–were able to contribute to the grassroots effort supporting the accused WikiLeaks whistle-blower.
“We’ve been in discussions with PayPal for weeks, and by their own admission there’s no legal obligation for them to close down our account,” noted Loraine Reitman of the Bradley Manning Support Network (Support Network). “This was an internal policy decision by PayPal.”
“We exchanged numerous emails and phone calls with the legal department and the office of executive escalations of PayPal,” explained Jeff Paterson. “They said they would not unrestrict our account unless we authorized PayPal to withdraw funds from our organization’s checking account by default. Our accounting does not allow for this type of direct access by a third party, nor do I trust PayPal as a business entity with this responsibility given their punitive actions against WikiLeaks-an entity not charged with any crime by any government on Earth.”
The Support Network repeatedly requested and was refused formal documentation from PayPal describing their policies in this matter.
PayPal is a private company and thus under no legal obligation to provide Courage to Resist, the Bradley Manning Support Network, or anyone else with services. This was something made very clear to the Support Network by PayPal representatives.
“They opted to apply an exceptional hurdle for us to clear in order to continue as a customer, whereas we have clearly provided the legally required information and verification. I think our dealings with PayPal should be a cautionary tale for any possibly controversial not-for-profit entity with a PayPal account,” Paterson said, “While there may be no legal obligation to provide services, there is an ethical obligation. By shutting out legitimate nonprofit activity, PayPal shows itself to be morally bankrupt.”
Courage to Resist registered the PayPal account in 2006. There were no issues with this account until supporters were encouraged to donate via PayPal to help fund the “Stand with Bradley Manning” public statement and petition effort (www.standwithbrad.org ).
In late 2010, PayPal, MasterCard and Visa closed down payment services to WikiLeaks, severely restricting that organization’s ability to accept online donations. Within days, Courage to Resist project director and Support Network steering committee member Jeff Paterson fielded lengthy calls from executives at PayPal regarding website content, the intended use of the funds being solicited in support of Bradley Manning, and accountings of the recent purchases (primarily envelopes, paper, and postage stamps) made with PayPal funds.
The PayPal account was briefly restricted at that time pending organizational “verification.” To meet PayPal’s standard verification requirements, the Support Network opted to open a line of credit with PayPal and provided Social Security numbers and other financial details in doing so. Approximately a month later on January 29, 2011, PayPal decided that these standard protocols did not apply to Bradley Manning related efforts.
Donations made via Visa, MasterCard, and Discover–along with checks and money orders–remain unaffected. Funds donated to Bradley Manning’s defense fund are used for legal defense expenses, public awareness efforts, and minimal administrative costs. Information regarding donations, including a fiscal accounting of funds, is publicly available on the Internet at www.couragetoresist.org/bradley
Manning is an American soldier who has been held in solitary confinement since June 2010. He is currently being held in pre-trial confinement at the Marine brig in Quantico, Virginia, and is not expected to face court martial until at least October 2011. Manning has been convicted of no crime and has a Constitutional right to a fair trial. The Support Network is dedicated to ending Manning’s extreme and illegal pre-trial punishment, ensuring he receives civilian legal representation of his choosing, and thwarting efforts by the U.S. government to hold a secret trial, out of sight of media and supporters. The Support Network has no organizational ties to WikiLeaks.
PayPal Backs Down, Reinstates Account for Supporters of Bradley Manning::
http://www.bradleymanning.org/16196/paypal-backs-down-reinstates-account-for-supporters-of-bradley-manning/The online payment provider PayPal has frozen the account of Courage to Resist, which... more
It is always interesting to learn how others see us, despite the fact that we have enough self-criticism for decades to come. This particular view is from geopolitical writer Manlio Dinucci, who also contributes to Voltairenet.org, an independent news network which publishes in French, but whose articles can be translated into several other languages.
His article is complemented by a stunning photo of President Barack Obama with his wife standing by the White House Christmas Tree. The rhetoric however, is not as sparkling as the contents of the photo.
He begins on a gloomy note: not only has nothing changed under Barack Obama, as the country continues on its downward slope, but the militarization of the country consumes one quarter of the federal budget as the debt climbs to two-thirds of the GNP. In Washington, whether you are powerful or miserable, Christmas has lost its meaning.It is always interesting to learn how others see us, despite the fact that we have... more
Conor Knighton puts Nancy Grace's new show "Swift Justice" on trial with the infoMania live studio audience as jury.. The verdict: Guilty of grade-A awfulness. Conor testifies that the former prosecutor and current TV harpy talks tough whether she's discussing actual crimes (like on her long-running Headline News show) or cracking the case of the dog poop on "Swift Justice." Though in Nancy's defense, she's surprisingly knowledgeable about canine crap.
infoMania is a half-hour satirical news show that airs on Current TV, now shot live in front of a studio audience. The show puts a comedic spin on the 24-hour chaos and information overload brought about by the constant bombardment of the media. Hosted by Conor Knighton and co-starring Brett Erlich, Erin Gibson, Ben Hoffman, Bryan Safi and Sergio Cilli, the show airs on Thursdays at 11/10c on Current TV.
Go to http://current.com/infomania for more, and make sure to check out our Facebook profile for special features at http://facebook.com/infomania.Conor Knighton puts Nancy Grace's new show "Swift Justice" on trial... more
ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. — The lawyer for a young Florida woman who was known for unstoppable hiccups and is now accused of murder said Tuesday he may present an unusual defense in her case: His client has Tourette's Syndrome.
Jennifer Mee, 19, was charged Sunday with first-degree murder after police said she lured a 22-year-old man to a meeting where he was robbed and shot a day earlier. St. Peterburg Maj. Mike Kovacsev said police do not believe she fired the gun.
Mee was briefly famous in 2007 because she couldn't stop hiccuping. Her attorney, John Trevena, said she was diagnosed with Tourette's Syndrome, a neurological disorder that can cause involuntary movements and speech problems.
"Hiccups are a symptom of Tourette's," Trevena said, declining to be more specific about how the condition might have affected his client's behavior.
Trevena said Mee, who has never been arrested before, is distraught and is being held without bond in a protective confinement wing at the Pinellas County Jail because she is a high-profile inmate.
Her attorney is used to cases with a bright media spotlight; he represents the father of John Graziano, the Iraq War veteran who suffered severe brain damage while riding in a car with wrestling star Hulk Hogan's son, Nick Bollea.
Kovacsev told NBC's "Today" show that police had records of about a dozen contacts with Mee over the past year at a series of different addresses, many where her boyfriend roughed her up.
2007: 'Hiccup Girl' Cured
"She didn't actually live on the street, but was transient in nature because she tended to live in different motels or apartments and moved from one location to another," he said. "Sometimes when you live a little bit of a transient lifestyle you tend to hang around some unsavory individuals."
He added that the two men charged with Mee had "minimal criminal records" but that her ex-boyfriend was in jail for robbery.
The victim in the case was 22-year-old Shannon Griffin. Police said he worked at Walmart and had lived in Florida for about a year — before that, he lived in Petal, Miss.
Police said Mee accepted a friend request from Griffin on a social networking website five or six days before the robbery, but it was unclear if he had recognized her as the "hiccup girl."
Her mystery plight put her on the "Today" show as a teenager in 2007, where she was hugged by fellow guest and country music star Keith Urban.
Mee's constant hiccups stopped on their own after five weeks, but Trevena said that Mee still suffers from periodic bouts.
"They'll always continue," he said.
http://www.comcast.net/articles/news-general/20101025/US.Endless.Hiccups.Arrest/ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. — The lawyer for a young Florida woman who was known for... more
Squared-jawed, with four stars decorating each shoulder, General Keith Alexander looks like a character straight out of an old American war movie. But his old-fashioned appearance belies the fact that the general has a new job that is so 21st-century it could have been dreamed up by a computer games designer. Alexander is the first boss of USCybercom, the United States Cyber Command, in charge of the Pentagon’s sprawling cyber networks and tasked with battling unknown enemies in a virtual world. http://www.makeahistory.com/index.php/free-stuff/7125-cyber-commandSquared-jawed, with four stars decorating each shoulder, General Keith Alexander looks... more
Whether it’s a probation violation, drug charge, or something as serious as a murder, it seems that the same attorneys dominate the criminal justice-plagued headlines.
LINK : http://www.criminaljusticedegreesguide.com/features/10-famous-defense-attorneys.htmlWhether it’s a probation violation, drug charge, or something as serious as a... more
Darpa’s got ambitious goals when it comes to revolutionizing the outmoded, expensive process of defense manufacturing. The Pentagon’s blue-sky research arm wants fast-tracked timelines and widespread collaboration, all facilitated by web 2.0. And they’re looking to assemble an army of teenaged brains to help them do it.
The agency’s putting $10 million into a new program, Manufacturing Experimentation and Outreach, or Mentor, that aims to “develop and motivate a next generation cadre of system designers and manufacturing innovators.”
Darpa’s looking for legions of high school students with a firm grasp on tools like Facebook and Twitter, who can work in teams “within a single high school and across multiple high schools” to design and develop “cyber-electro-mechanical systems” like go-carts, robots and even unmanned aircraft. Social networks, the agency hopes, can facilitate collaboration as well as inter-group competitions.
Mentor is only the latest Darpa program hoping to transform today’s youth into tomorrow’s Pentagon hot shots. Earlier this year, the agency requested proposals that would boost the number of teens pursuing bona fide geekdom. That program was catalyzed by concerns over the country’s “ability to compete in the increasingly internationalized stage.” This time around, Darpa’s looking for the brawniest brains worldwide, noting that “substantial participation by foreign high schools is essential to leveraging best-of-kind talent.”
But teens won’t just be handed cash money and flung into the development biz. Darpa’s looking for non-profits, academic institutions and businesses to develop proposals, and then spearhead participation from schools and provide them with the necessary manufacturing equipment. And Darpa’s thinking big: the agency wants 1,000 schools involved by the program’s fourth year.
And lest ambitious adolescent geeks think they’ll make a killing from their programs, designs or unmanned amphibious go-carts, Darpa’s making one thing very clear: you work for us.
“DARPA desires to receive complete, fully functional algorithms, source code, documentation, binaries, and test use cases,” the agency solicitation reads. “[And] Unlimited Rights to all deliverables… to enable their industry-wide promulgation in the course of and subsequent to this program.”Darpa’s got ambitious goals when it comes to revolutionizing the outmoded,... more
The article has gathered the top 50 criminal defense blogs. Written by public defenders, private lawyers, law professors, and even district attorneys, they are sure to have something useful.
link: http://www.criminaljusticedegree.com/top-50-criminal-defense-blogs/The article has gathered the top 50 criminal defense blogs. Written by public... more
Bad flash drive caused worst U.S. military breach, not Russian + Video documentary: Cyber War: Sabotaging the SystemA malware-laden flash drive inserted in a laptop at a U.S. military base in the Middle East in 2008 led to the "most significant breach of" the nation's military computers ever. The malicious code on the flash drive was placed there by a "foreign intelligence agency." http://www.makeahistory.com/index.php/free-stuff/3426-bad-flash-driveA malware-laden flash drive inserted in a laptop at a U.S. military base in the Middle... more
Elmendorf Afb - Former Cold War enemies will take part in the first-ever joint air defence exercise between US, Canadian and Russian air forces.
The American North American Aerospace Defense Command, NORAD – ironically founded to defend North American air space against Soviet nuclear missile attacks – says the manoeuvres will include training to combat terrorist attacks on commercial airliners, Voice of America reports.
The exercise, codenamed Vigilant Eagle, will be co-ordinated jointly from a US military command centre in Elmendorf Air Force Base in Alaska and the Russian Far East city of Khabarovsk.
NORAD said the manoeuvres would require both Russian and NORAD bases to launch or divert fighter aircraft to investigate and shadow commercial planes.
A spokesman for the Russian Air Force, Lieutenant Colonel Vladimir Drik, said the exercise was part of a working plan aimed at improving co-operation between Russian and US forces.Elmendorf Afb - Former Cold War enemies will take part in the first-ever joint air... more
A hidden world, growing beyond control
The top-secret world the government created in response to the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, has become so large, so unwieldy and so secretive that no one knows how much money it costs, how many people it employs, how many programs exist within it or exactly how many agencies do the same work.
These are some of the findings of a two-year investigation by The Washington Post that discovered what amounts to an alternative geography of the United States, a Top Secret America hidden from public view and lacking in thorough oversight. After nine years of unprecedented spending and growth, the result is that the system put in place to keep the United States safe is so massive that its effectiveness is impossible to determine.
The investigation's other findings include:
* Some 1,271 government organizations and 1,931 private companies work on programs related to counterterrorism, homeland security and intelligence in about 10,000 locations across the United States.
* An estimated 854,000 people, nearly 1.5 times as many people as live in Washington, D.C., hold top-secret security clearances.
* In Washington and the surrounding area, 33 building complexes for top-secret intelligence work are under construction or have been built since September 2001. Together they occupy the equivalent of almost three Pentagons or 22 U.S. Capitol buildings - about 17 million square feet of space.
* Many security and intelligence agencies do the same work, creating redundancy and waste. For example, 51 federal organizations and military commands, operating in 15 U.S. cities, track the flow of money to and from terrorist networks.
* Analysts who make sense of documents and conversations obtained by foreign and domestic spying share their judgment by publishing 50,000 intelligence reports each year - a volume so large that many are routinely ignored.
These are not academic issues; lack of focus, not lack of resources, was at the heart of the Fort Hood shooting that left 13 dead, as well as the Christmas Day bomb attempt thwarted not by the thousands of analysts employed to find lone terrorists but by an alert airline passenger who saw smoke coming from his seatmate.
They are also issues that greatly concern some of the people in charge of the nation's security.
"There has been so much growth since 9/11 that getting your arms around that - not just for the DNI [Director of National Intelligence], but for any individual, for the director of the CIA, for the secretary of defense - is a challenge," Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates said in an interview with The Post last week.
In the Department of Defense, where more than two-thirds of the intelligence programs reside, only a handful of senior officials - called Super Users - have the ability to even know about all the department's activities. But as two of the Super Users indicated in interviews, there is simply no way they can keep up with the nation's most sensitive work.
"I'm not going to live long enough to be briefed on everything" was how one Super User put it. The other recounted that for his initial briefing, he was escorted into a tiny, dark room, seated at a small table and told he couldn't take notes. Program after program began flashing on a screen, he said, until he yelled ''Stop!" in frustration.
"I wasn't remembering any of it," he said.
Underscoring the seriousness of these issues are the conclusions of retired Army Lt. Gen. John R. Vines, who was asked last year to review the method for tracking the Defense Department's most sensitive programs. Vines, who once commanded 145,000 troops in Iraq and is familiar with complex problems, was stunned by what he discovered.
READ MORE AT LINK:
http://projects.washingtonpost.com/top-secret-america/articles/a-hidden-world-growing-beyond-control/?wpisrc=nl_politicsA hidden world, growing beyond control The top-secret world the government created... more
Illegals rob elderly citizen, citizen fires gun, prosecutors charge the citizen--and not the illegalsThis is a CLASSIC example of how, in cities like Denver where the politicians have promoted sanctuary city policies, illegal aliens are given more rights than citizens.
There is a local news video on the page below:
Elderly man facing serious charges for shooting at thieves
Julie Hayden Investigative Reporter
7:22 PM MDT, July 7, 2010
WHEAT RIDGE, Colo. - Legal analyst Dan Recht said he believes the Jefferson County District Attorney is "seriously overcharging" a Wheat Ridge homeowner, accused of attempted first degree murder for shooting at two thieves.
82-year-old Robert Wallace said he fired two shots at two men when they tried to run him over while stealing his flatbed trailer.
Wallace now faces twelve felony counts, including four counts of attempted first degree murder, for what he described as an act of defending his property and his life. If convicted, he could spend the rest of his life in prison.
One of the thieves, Damacio Torres later admitted to the theft. He and his partner in crime, Alvara Cardano both have prior arrest records and are believed to be in the country illegally.
But they are not facing any charges.
Recht said, in his experience, prosecutors overcharge cases to force a person to plea bargain. He argued that it's just not right to put a person through that kind of mental and financial stress.
Jefferson County DA, Scott Storey, indicated he'll take a closer look at his office's decision to throw the book at the homeowner and hinted the charges could be reduced. He said the investigation continues into the confessed thieves.
There are additional details you need to know:
1) the two illegal aliens had many prior arrests for theft. At one point recently they stole a $60,000 piece of farm equipment on a trailer in a very similar theft.
2) investigators said they believe the two criminals are part of a car theft ring, and wanted the trailer for additional thefts.
3) the driver of the truck was hit by a bullet and is now paralized, and wants to sue the elderly man "for everything he has"
4) First Degree Murder is a capital punishment offense, so this 82 year old gentleman could go to jail for the rest of his life or even receive the death penalty for defending his life and property.
5) In interviews on Denver radio programs, local defense lawyers, former prosecutors and former Congressmen in colorado have stated that had the "victims" been anything other than illegal immigrants, Mr Wallace would not be charged at all.
6) the prosecuting attorneys have pressed NO CHARGES against the illegal immigrant theives. NONE.
.This is a CLASSIC example of how, in cities like Denver where the politicians have... more
In this scene from Vanguard's "War Crimes," Clark Fish, an inmate at Maricopa County Jail in Arizona, tells correspondent Kaj Larsen about his time in Iraq as an Army medic. Fish, who has been convicted of murdering his girlfriend but still awaits sentencing, has been diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder.
Kaj investigates the alarming rise in the number of soldiers who have been traumatized by war and are now accused of bringing the violence home. Of the more than 2 million men and women who have served in the recent wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, as many as a third of them may now have PTSD. A growing number of these vets are being charged with violent crimes, and Kaj travels to prisons and mental health facilities in Arizona, Colorado and Oregon to hear their stories.
"War Crimes" premieres Wednesday, July 7 at 10/9c on Current TV.
"Vanguard," airing weekly on Current TV Wednesdays at 10/9c, is a no-limits documentary series whose award-winning correspondents put themselves in extraordinary situations to immerse viewers in global issues that have a large social significance. Unlike sound-bite driven reporting, the show's correspondents, Adam Yamaguchi, Kaj Larsen, Christof Putzel and Mariana van Zeller, serve as trusted guides who take viewers on in-depth real life adventures in pursuit of some of the world's most important stories.
For more, go to http://current.com/vanguard.In this scene from Vanguard's "War Crimes," Clark Fish, an inmate at... more
The Global Security Forum, CSIS’s marquee conference, surveys a range of major security issues confronting the United States. By bringing together senior decisionmakers, opinion leaders, and perspectives from the private sector, the Forum fosters open conversation and brings forth the best solutions to the biggest security challenges of the day.
For full event audio and video please visit http://csis.org/program/global-security-forumThe Global Security Forum, CSIS’s marquee conference, surveys a range of major... more
The U.S. government must maintain its staunch support of Israel's right to defensible borders regardless of changes in administration.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q4mtS1BWxGM&feature=channelThe U.S. government must maintain its staunch support of Israel's right to... more
As BP's image becomes more tarnished each day the oil well spills into the gulf, New York City Mayor Bloomberg comes to their defense.As BP's image becomes more tarnished each day the oil well spills into the gulf,... more
The Sustainable Defense Task Force, put together at the behest of Rep. Barney Frank (D-MA) to "explore options for reducing the defense budget’s contribution to the federal deficit without compromising the essential security of the US," recommends saving $200 billion by reducing the presence of US troops in Western Europe and the Far East, and reducing total troop strength to 1.3 million.
http://rawstory.com/rs/2010/0611/commission-outlines-1-trillion-defense-budget-cuts/The Sustainable Defense Task Force, put together at the behest of Rep. Barney Frank... more
A bipartisan commission of defense experts has released a plan that would reduce the US's defense spending by nearly $1 trillion over 10 years -- a plan sure to gather support from progressives and libertarians, but unlikely to pass through Congress.
The commission's report comes at a time when public concern about the US's national debt has hit a fever pitch, and the claim that nearly $1 trillion can be saved from defense spending will certainly color future debates about what government services to cut.
The Sustainable Defense Task Force, put together at the behest of Rep. Barney Frank (D-MA) to "explore options for reducing the defense budget’s contribution to the federal deficit without compromising the essential security of the US," recommends saving $200 billion by reducing the presence of US troops in Western Europe and the Far East, and reducing total troop strength to 1.3 million.A bipartisan commission of defense experts has released a plan that would reduce the... more
Rand Paul, the Republican nominee for Kentucky’s U.S. Senate seat, famously immersed himself in a tub of hot water over his opposition to portions of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 — the portions that prohibit private owners of establishments from discrimination on the basis of race and other distinguishing factors. (Walking back from comments he made in his interview with Rachel Maddow on Wednesday night, Paul now says he would have voted for the bill if it came before him.)
In a media environment where Paul is finding few friends outside the right-wing blogosphere, one mainstream blogger is defending the candidate against charges of racism: David Weigel of the Washington Post.
Weigel’s defense of Rand Paul is particularly troubling, appearing, as it did yesterday, on the Web site of the major newspaper of a city that, until the 1964 act passed, was segregated. Weigel is no right-wing guest columnist; he’s on the Post payroll as its point-man on all things right-wing.
I know Weigel, and think he’s an excellent reporter. And, actually, I rather like him. But his defense of Paul denies the evidence laid by the history of Weigel’s own adopted hometown.
Paul’s argument as Weigel, who leans libertarian himself, describes it is this:
Paul believes, as many conservatives believe, that the government should ban bias in all of its institutions but cannot intervene in the policies of private businesses. Those businesses, as Paul argues, take a risk by maintaining, in this example, racist policies. Patrons can decide whether or not to give them their money, or whether or not to make a fuss about their policies. That, not government regulation and intervention, is how bias should be eliminated in the private sector. And in this belief Paul is joined by some conservatives who resent that liberals seek government intervention for every unequal outcome.
Rand Paul’s biggest mistake, Weigel asserts, is that he told the truth about what he believes. “So is Rand Paul a racist?” Weigel asks. “No, and it’s irritating to watch his out-of-context quotes — this and a comment about how golf was no longer for elitists because Tiger Woods plays golf — splashed on the Web to make that point.”Rand Paul, the Republican nominee for Kentucky’s U.S. Senate seat, famously... more