Your government wants to know more about you.

by on December 23, 2010 · 2 comments

in Civil Rights, War and Peace

Monitoring America

by Dana Priest and William Arkin / Washington Post / Originally published December 20, 2010

Nine years after the terrorist attacks of 2001, the United States is assembling a vast domestic intelligence apparatus to collect information about Americans, using the FBI, local police, state homeland security offices and military criminal investigators.

The system, by far the largest and most technologically sophisticated in the nation’s history, collects, stores and analyzes information about thousands of U.S. citizens and residents, many of whom have not been accused of any wrongdoing.

The government’s goal is to have every state and local law enforcement agency in the country feed information to Washington to buttress the work of the FBI, which is in charge of terrorism investigations in the United States.

Other democracies – Britain and Israel, to name two – are well acquainted with such domestic security measures. But for the United States, the sum of these new activities represents a new level of governmental scrutiny.

This localized intelligence apparatus is part of a larger Top Secret America created since the attacks. In July, The Washington Post described an alternative geography of the United States, one that has grown so large, unwieldy and secretive that no one knows how much money it costs, how many people it employs or how many programs exist within it.

This story, along with related material on The Post’s Web site, examines how Top Secret America plays out at the local level. It describes a web of 4,058 federal, state and local organizations, each with its own counterterrorism responsibilities and jurisdictions. At least 935 of these organizations have been created since the 2001 attacks or became involved in counterterrorism for the first time after 9/11.

(Search our database for your state to find a detailed profile of counterterrorism efforts in your community.)

The months-long investigation, based on nearly 100 interviews and 1,000 documents, found that:

* Technologies and techniques honed for use on the battlefields of Iraq and Afghanistan have migrated into the hands of law enforcement agencies in America.

* The FBI is building a database with the names and certain personal information, such as employment history, of thousands of U.S. citizens and residents whom a local police officer or a fellow citizen believed to be acting suspiciously. It is accessible to an increasing number of local law enforcement and military criminal investigators, increasing concerns that it could somehow end up in the public domain.

For the remainder of this article, go here to the WaPo.

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

annagrace December 23, 2010 at 10:18 am

And citizens can do their part by purchasing patriotapps for their iPhone. What does it do? “Enables citizens to record and communicate: National Security, Suspicious activities, Crime; Government Waste; Environmental Crime or possible violations ; White collar crime; Workplace harassment, discrimination, or other violations;
Public Health concerns”

This is as scary as it gets folks. The State amassing info and “good” citizens purchasing an app from a private company to feed the State info.


Diane5150 December 24, 2010 at 5:43 am



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