posted on Jun, 15 2008 @ 10:51 AM
A police state exists when federal and state political and police mechanisms:
Shut down media coverage after they steal an election
Serve the central government instead of serving the citizens
Enforce the policies of the central government instead of responding primarily to criminal misdeeds
Spy on and intimidate citizens
All these conditions now exist in the United States!
In a free society, police agencies respond to evidence of planned and actual criminal activity.
Police officers in a free society keep the peace; they do not investigate citizens and activities unless there is some reason to investigate.
In a free society, police do not investigate citizens' attitudes toward the central government, only their action.
Citizen dissent is lawful in a free society and police agencies do not investigate citizens' attitudes toward the criminal justice apparatus.
Those conditions no longer exist in the United States!
Under the former 1989 Guidelines, the FBI first had to obtain evidence suggesting some kind of criminal activity before its agents could begin
investigating. Under the FBI's new May 30, 2002 revised Guidelines, FBI agents are authorized to carry out "general topical research" and retain
files on this research. Specifically, agents may conduct "online searches" and visit "online sites and forums as part of such research."
The new Guidelines warn against searching "for information by individuals' names or other individual identifiers," but it's okay to search by
names to locate "names of authors who write on the topic" that the agent is researching. Of course every citizen of the United States is a possible
"author" of e-mail messages on a variety of subjects, so all U.S. citizens are potential "terrorism suspects" under these new guidelines.
The new Guidelines now encourage the FBI to snoop around looking for people who might be suspicious, creating files on anyone who catches their
fancy. Agents can now investigate people, organizations, websites, chat rooms and forums for any reason or for no reason at all. They can enter your
home without a warrant and are not required to inform you that they have invaded your home if you are not present.
All the records they create in their investigations will be placed in national databases available to all agencies now under the new "Homeland
Security" umbrella. Never in U.S. history has there been such a monolithic surveillance mechanism with the terrible power to destroy American
The 1989 and the new 2002 Guidelines expressly state that the FBI must not launch investigations "based solely on [citizens'] activities protected
by the First Amendment or on the lawful exercise of any other [federal or Constitutional] rights." Do you see your local FBI agent as having a clear
enough understanding of constitutional rights to keep him from investigating people whom he identifies as having "terrorist proclivities?"
Scores of U.S. cities are now using surveillance television camera systems to spy on citizens--shades of 1984. With video cameras perched atop
buildings and poles, watching whatever American are doing, do you suppose there might be some potential for abuse in such systems? Christian
Parenti's, article, "DC's Virtual Panopticon," in the June 3, 2002 issue of The Nation describes how "police in Detroit and DC have used CCTV
[closed-circuit television] to stalk personal foes, political opponents and young women." Smile, you're on Kandid Kamera.
To justify its expanding obliteration of constitutional liberties, the Bush administration uses the most insane brand of logic--which should outrage
Why did the intelligence agencies fail to detect or prevent 9/11? Because they didn't have enough money. So we'll give them billions more.
Why is the F.B.I. still failing in its fight against terrorism? Because the rights of American citizens are preventing the agency from carrying out
its job. So we'll set up new Guidelines and take away more constitutional rights of citizens.
Why is it unnecessary for the Bush administration to provide records to Congress concerning Enron or prior knowledge of possible terrorist attacks?
Because we're in a state of war and the executive branch must not be hamstrung by witchhunts or frivolous investigations.
The U.S. Government Spying on and Lying to Its Citizens
Between 1956-1971, the F.B.I. conducted domestic "counterintelligence programs" ( COINTELPRO) to spy on, intimidate, and radicalize political
dissident groups. The F.B.I. had carried out covert operations throughout its history, but the target of the COINTELPRO operations was radical
political organizations. Since the F.B.I. spied on American political dissidents, not foreign agents, "counterintelligence" was merely a cover name
for the FBI activities.
F.B.I., military, and police forces have a notorious record of illegally quashing citizen dissent. Frank Morales's article, "U.S. Military Civil
Disturbance Planning," in the Spring-Summer, 2000 issue of Covert Action Quarterly exposed "Operation Garden Plot."
"Under the heading of 'civil disturbance planning', the U.S. military is training troops and police to suppress democratic opposition in America.
The master plan, Department of Defense Civil Disturbance Plan 55-2, is code-named, 'Operation Garden Plot'. Originated in 1968, the 'operational
plan' has been updated over the last three decades, most recently in 1991, and was activated during the Los Angeles 'riots' of 1992, and more than
likely during the recent anti-WTO 'Battle in Seattle.'
"Current U.S. military preparations for suppressing domestic civil disturbance, including the training of National Guard troops and police, are
actually part of a long history of American 'internal security' measures dating back to the first American Revolution. Generally, these measures
have sought to thwart the aims of social justice movements, embodying the concept that within the civilian body politic lurks an enemy that one day
the military might have to fight, or at least be ordered to fight."
The American government has a habit of lying to its citizens when it wants to contrive a new war.
In 1898, the sinking of the battleship Maine was the excuse for the Spanish American War
In 1915, the sinking of the ocean liner Lusitania was the excuse for World War I
In 1941, the attack on Pearl Harbor was the excuse for World War II
In 1964, the Gulf of Tonkin affair was the excuse for the Vietnam War
In 2001, the 9/11 attacks were the excuse for the "war on terrorism"
In 2003, the fictional weapons of mass destruction were the pretext for the war on Iraq
Government By Coup d'Etat and Intimidation
We know that the beginning stages of a police state exist in the United States when:
a leader is brought into power through illegal means
a national catastrophe is used as the pretext to begin a war and institute extraordinary restrictions on constitutional liberties
citizen dissent is held to be treasonous
the constitutional separation of powers is abrogated by a power-mad executive branch which controls or intimidates the other two branches of
The US Patriot Act was enacted by a Congress that had not actually read it. The only thing representatives and senators got was a two or three page
compendium from the White House press office. Nobody was actually given the time to read the provisions of the act. The White House intimidated
members of Congress into passing the bill by telling them that if they refused to sign it, they'd be labeled as "unpatriotic"--something almost all
members of Congress were frightened of at the time.
Lieberman, Daschle and Gephardt later wrote a memorandum stating that Congress had effectively given the Bush Administration "near dictatorial
A Militarist Police State
The signs are unmistakable; the Bush regime is waging a "war against dissent," rapidly moving the United States to a total police state.
American citizens had assumed that the Patriot Act and the FBI Guidelines assured that only foreign aliens could be placed in military detention
centers, unprotected by the U.S. constitution. But on June 10, 2002, an American citizen was declared by Bush, without due process, to be an "enemy
combatant" and to have no constitutional protections. This American citizen was thrown into a naval brig in South Carolina.
Of course, Abdullah al Muhajir, a U.S. citizen also known as Jose Padilla, has been branded a "known terrorist" with ties to al Qaeda, so almost no
one is speaking out against this abrogation of constitutional procedures. A reputed "terrorist" who is said to have been building a "dirty bomb,"
Padilla, a New York-born man of Puerto Rican descent, is assumed to be beyond the pale, not worthy of judicial prerogatives. But what happens when
Bush or the FBI brands you as a "terrorist" because you appear to be a dissenter, denying you your constitutional rights as a U.S. citizen?
Attorney General Ashcroft explicitly stated that terrorists do not deserve constitutional protections. all they deserve are "courts" of conviction,
not justice. Unfortunately, in this creeping police state, who does and doesn't receive justice is determined by Bush and his underlings. Ashcroft's
successor, Gonzalez, is supporting every police state action the Bush junta is perpetrating.
The Bush administration wants us to believe that we are in an actual state of war--and therefore must operate under restricted wartime civil
liberties. You can't take a government seriously when it says we're in a state of war and yet refuses to reduce the record-breaking number of
immigrants it's allowing into the country each day.
All the new oversight laws the Bush administration has passed concern domestic surveillance of the American population, not restrictions on
immigration or tightening the screening process to examine new arrivals in America. A man like Ashcroft is laughable when he bulldozes constitutional
liberties yet refuses to allow gun ownership records to be used in the "war on terrorism."
The New American Thought Police
One of the most horrendous aspects of this incipient American police state is its portrayal as a benign patriotism. "We're going to make our nation
safe from terrorists," Bush sneers. This is a part of the larger propaganda campaign to make Dubya appear a harmless dunce--someone who isn't smart
enough to be a villain.
As we've seen in a previous essay the parallels between Nazi Germany and the Bush administration are striking. Bush's creeping police state is being
ushered in through exactly the same means that Hitler used to overpower the German people. Along with the attacks of his brutal Gestapo thugs, Hitler
achieved ultimate success when he got the people to spy and inform on one another.
So the Bush administration has recently given the new Neighborhood Watch Association and their new allies from the old AmeriCorp, $3.8 billion in
government funds to create what Bill Berkowitz has termed AmeriSnitch. 1
The Bush regime's Thought Police was inaugurated by Ashcroft and Ed McMahon, with Ed portraying himself as a jolly buffoon.
But this is the farthest thing from a comedy. The American Civil Liberties Union quite correctly sees this new Neighborhood Watch initiative as part
of an "ongoing pattern of erosion of basic civil liberties in America in the name of unproven security measures."
"By asking neighborhood groups to report on people who are 'unfamiliar' or who act in ways that are 'suspicious' or 'not normal,' our
government is unconstructively fear-mongering, and fueling the already rampant ethnic and religious scapegoating," says ACLU President Nadine
The most depraved aspect of this new initiative is the recruitment of young people into this reincarnation of the Hitler Youth. So in the upcoming
months we'll see the buffoon-like pied piper, Ed McMahon, on TV enlisting youngsters into their friendly Neighborhood Watch Gestapo program.
Another Gestapo group jumping on the bandwagon is "Americans for Victory Over Terrorism," led by former Education secretary Bill Bennett.
Representing themselves as crusaders for virtue and conservative values, this Gestapo group will wage holy war against those they brand as weakening
America's resolve to fight terrorism. In his opening announcement, Bennett pledged to take this fight "to campuses, salons, oratorical societies,
editorial pages and television."
"It's the height of paranoid insanity to claim we're moving toward a police state," the blissfully ignorant proclaim. "If there's a police
state," they sneer, "where's the goose-stepping Gestapo in our streets?" You can see them if you look beyond the old manifestations of tyranny to
the new forms. And staring you in the face are the civilian concentration camps that have already been set up.
Fortunately, we are only in the first stages of this new hellish police state and we can stop it in its tracks if we act now to form a unified,
activist citizen taskforce.
There are many people in the world who support our efforts to preserve American freedom, including:
the highest ranking UN human rights official
a former presidential staff member
even some conservatives
This isn't a matter of if we decide to stop this police state in its infancy; we either stop it now or it will inevitably germinate into a full-blown
monster. Now that the cabal behind Bush have stolen the 2004 election--and put in place a system to steal all future elections--we must do everything
we can to struggle against the Bush II police state. Certainly, we must have the courage to point out its reality and resist it in whatever way