It looks like you're using an Ad Blocker.
Please white-list or disable AboveTopSecret.com in your ad-blocking tool.
Some features of ATS will be disabled while you continue to use an ad-blocker.
Antiwar, other groups are monitored to curb violence, not because of ideology, agency says.
The FBI, while waging a highly publicized war against terrorism, has spent resources gathering information on antiwar and environmental protesters and on activists who feed vegetarian meals to the homeless, the agency's internal memos show.
For years, the FBI's definition of terrorism has included violence against property, such as the window-smashing during the 1999 Seattle protests against the World Trade Organization. That definition has led FBI investigations to online discussion boards, organizing meetings and demonstrations of a wide range of activist groups. Officials say that international terrorists pose the greatest threat to the nation but that they cannot ignore crimes committed by some activists...
The FBI's encounters with activists are described in hundreds of pages of documents obtained by the American Civil Liberties Union under the Freedom of Information Act after agents visited several activists before the 2004 political conventions. Details have steadily trickled out over the last year, but newly released documents provide a fuller view of some FBI probes.
ACLU attorneys acknowledge that the FBI memos are heavily redacted and contain incomplete portraits of some cases. Still, the attorneys say, the documents show that the FBI has monitored groups that were not suspected of any crime...
The murky connection that the federal government makes between some left-wing activist groups and terrorism was illustrated in a Justice Department presentation to a college law class this month.
An FBI counterterrorism official showed the class, at the University of Texas in Austin, 35 slides listing militia, neo-Nazi and Islamist groups. Senior Special Agent Charles Rasner said one slide, labeled "Anarchism," was a federal analyst's list of groups that people intent on terrorism might associate with.
The list included Food Not Bombs, which mainly serves vegetarian food to homeless people, and — with a question mark next to it — Indymedia, a collective that publishes what it calls radical journalism online. Both groups are among the numerous organizations affiliated with anarchists and anti-globalization protests, where there has been some violence.