Judge: Government’s Justification for Keeping Detainee Abuse Photos Secret Is ‘Not Sufficient’

By: Thursday August 28, 2014 7:35 am

A federal district court judge has ruled that the government’s certification to prevent the disclosure of thousands of photos of detainee abuse and torture in Afghanistan and Iraq—including inhumane treatment at Abu Ghraib prison—is “not sufficient to prevent publication.”

The federal judge ordered the government to appear in court on September 8 and produce the photographs or submit additional evidence to support keeping the photos secret.

 

DoJ Memo Justifies Killing Anwar al-Awlaki by Citing US Law Enforcement’s Right to Use Deadly Force

By: Saturday August 16, 2014 7:51 am

As a result of Freedom of Information Act lawsuits filed by the American Civil Liberties Union and the New York Times, President Barack Obama’s administration has released the first memo authored by federal appeals court judge and former Office of Legal Counsel lawyer David Barron to justify the killing of US citizen and terrorism suspect Anwar al-Awlaki.

White House’s Censorship of Senate Report on CIA Torture Continues US Indignity Toward Victims

By: Tuesday August 5, 2014 1:15 pm

United States senators involved in producing a more than 6,000-page report on the Central Intelligence Agency’s rendition, detention and interrogation program are upset with significant redactions the White House made to the report. One of the key issues is that the White House censored “pseudonyms” from the report used to protect covert CIA agents and foreign countries, according to a report from McClatchy Newspapers.

Congress Members and Staffers Blocked From Accessing Website for ‘Hackers on Planet Earth’ (#HopeX) Conference

By: Tuesday July 29, 2014 8:55 am

Congress members and their staffers are blocked from accessing the website for the annual Hackers on Planet Earth (HOPE) conference, according to a screen shot Firedoglake obtained.

A staffer in Congress tried to access the website on July 28, more than a week after the tenth annual conference was held, and got a screen indicating the site had been categorized as a prohibited website.

Police Conspire with US Marshal’s Service to Hide Evidence of ‘StingRay’ Surveillance

By: Friday June 20, 2014 8:52 am

Local police in Florida are essentially conspiring with the US Marshal’s Service to keep details related to their use of cell phone tracking devices in criminal investigations secret, according to internal emails from the Sarasota Police Department released to the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU).

Judge Rules Against ACLU, Fails to Resolve Issue of US Marshals Seizing ‘StingRay’ Surveillance Records

By: Wednesday June 18, 2014 10:22 am

A city circuit judge dismissed a lawsuit seeking applications to the Florida state court and the state court’s orders approving the use of “StingRay” devices capable of surveillance of entire communities. But the judge did not resolve the issue of the United States Marshal’s Service seizing copies of records from the Sarasota Police Department so the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) would not be able to get them.

Fear in Terrorism Case in Chicago Leads to Court Not Recording Oral Argument; Court Orders Do-Over

By: Saturday June 7, 2014 8:29 am

Disclosures from NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden made it possible to see how the government misled the FISA court and manipulated secret processes intended to provide a check on surveillance powers. That likely inspired the district court judge to take the bold move of granting defense attorneys access to surveillance records. However, it would appear this federal appeals court is still compromised by the national security state and unwilling to act independently of the fear prosecutors manufacture to maintain control over the courtroom.

New Organization Launched to Accept Submissions & Provide Support to Whistleblowers

By: Wednesday June 4, 2014 3:30 pm

A new organization has been launched by whistleblowers, journalists, activists, lawyers and former government officials to help whistleblowers make disclosures that are in the public interest. The launch was announced at a press conference at the National Press Club this morning.

US Marshals Seize Copies of Local Cell Phone Tracking Records Requested by ACLU

By: Tuesday June 3, 2014 3:05 pm

US marshals in Florida seized copies of local cell phone tracking records from the Sarasota Police Department, which the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) chapter in the state had requested. The extraordinarily brazen act was a clear violation of public records law. And the ACLU quickly pushed for a temporary injunction from a judge to stop this from happening again.

The ACLU chapter was seeking records on police use of “Stingray” surveillance devices, which can be used to locate cell phone by acting a like a fake cellphone tower. The technology enables the “electronic equivalent of dragnet ‘general searches’ prohibited by the Fourth Amendment,” the ACLU argues.

Obama Administration Doesn’t Think It Needs Authorization From Congress to Wage War Anywhere in World

By: Wednesday May 21, 2014 4:23 pm

Does the president have to have a statute authorizing the use of military force in order to legally wage war against terrorist groups that may or may not pose an imminent threat to the United States? Or can the president simply target, capture and kill whomever in whatever terrorist group, even if Congress has not authorized action?

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