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  • Jan
    replied
    Originally posted by circularREASON
    jesus - i'm coming over to the states in november..

    it kinda makes me think twice...
    About what? I mean it, about what? I could throw entire barrels of salt through the bias holes in all those stories and I'm sure you can do the same. Are they disturbing? Yeah, some, but only one of the stories is about an actual government installation, one that's been around for many decades. The other two are about individuals and as we learn as children, 'it takes all sorts to fill the freeways'.

    Jan

    Leave a comment:

  • circularREASON
    Spoo Trader

  • circularREASON
    replied
    jesus - i'm coming over to the states in november..

    it kinda makes me think twice...

    Leave a comment:

  • Dr Maturin
    Ship's Surgeon

  • Dr Maturin
    replied
    What I don't understand is why the media insists on showing the AG pics over and over and over to remind us how evil America is, but when it comes to showing the results of 9/11, they won't show it because it is insensitive to victims' families.

    Leave a comment:

  • bakana
    Confirmed User

  • bakana
    replied
    And here's a series of stories about the Official people protecting us from Osama that will make us all feel So Much Safer:

    Who Hired these Turkeys?


    Air marshal busted for kiddie porn

    BY ROBERT E. KESSLER AND DEBORAH HIRSCH - STAFF WRITER

    July 23, 2004

    A federal air marshal from Hicksville has been arrested on charges of possessing child pornography and false credentials identifying him as both an a FBI agent and a CIA agent, federal officials said.

    Michael McGowan, 32, of 47 Haverford Rd., was arrested by federal postal inspectors late Wednesday at a casino in upstate Verona near the Canadian border, officials said.

    At a hearing in federal District Court in Syracuse yesterday, McGowan did not oppose being transferred to the federal District Court in Central Islip for arraignment on the charges Monday, officials said.
    Air Marshall Arrested

    Homeland Security Officer Charged in Tourist Beating

    By Carolyn Thompson Associated Press Writer
    Published: Jul 23, 2004

    BUFFALO, N.Y. (AP) - A Homeland Security inspector who forcibly subdued a Chinese tourist he mistakenly believed was involved in marijuana smuggling was charged Friday with violating her civil rights, officials said.

    The incident occurred late Wednesday at the U.S.-Canadian border in Niagara Falls, after Customs and Border Protection officers confiscated marijuana from a male pedestrian.

    Officer Robert Rhodes, mistakenly believing the woman standing nearby was involved, allegedly sprayed her with pepper spray, threw her against a wall, kneed her in the head as she knelt on the ground and struck her head on the ground while holding her hair, according to witnesses.

    The woman, whose name was not released, was treated at a hospital and released.

    An agent who interviewed the victim through an interpreter several hours later noted in an affidavit that her eyes were nearly swollen shut, and she had bumps and bruises on her face and head.

    A telephone number listed for Rhodes was disconnected Friday.
    Tourist Beatdown


    Teaching Torture
    Congress quietly keeps School of the Americas alive
    by Doug Ireland


    Remember how congressional leaders on both sides of the aisle deplored the torture of prisoners at Abu Ghraib as ôun-Americanö? Last Thursday, however, the House quietly passed a renewed appropriation that keeps open the U.S.Æs most infamous torture-teaching institution, known as the School of the Americas (SOA), where the illegal physical and psychological abuse of prisoners of the kind the world condemned at Abu Ghraib and worse has been routinely taught for years.

    A relic of the Cold War, the SOA was originally set up to train military, police and intelligence officers of U.S. allies south of the border in the fight against insurgencies Washington labeled ôCommunist.ö In reality, the SOAÆs graduates have been the shock troops of political repression, propping up a string of dictatorial and repressive regimes favored by the Pentagon.

    The interrogation manuals long used at the SOA were made public in May by the National Security Archive, an independent research group, and posted on its Web site after they were declassified following Freedom of Information Act requests by, among others, the Baltimore Sun. In releasing the manuals, the NSA noted that they ôdescribe æcoercive techniquesÆ such as those used to mistreat the detainees at Abu Ghraib.ö

    The Abu Ghraib torture techniques have been field-tested by SOA graduates ù seven of the U.S. Army interrogation manuals that were translated into Spanish, used at the SOAÆs trainings and distributed to our allies, offered instruction on torture, beatings and assassination. As Dr. Miles Schuman, a physician with the Canadian Centre for Victims of Torture who has documented torture cases and counseled their victims, graphically wrote in the May 14 Toronto Globe and Mail under the headline ôAbu Ghraib: The Rule, Not the Exceptionö:

    ôThe black hood covering the faces of naked prisoners in Abu Ghraib was known as la capuchi in Guatemalan and Salvadoran torture chambers. The metal bed frame to which the naked and hooded detainee was bound in a crucifix position in Abu Ghraib was la cama, named for a former Chilean prisoner who survived the U.S.-installed regime of General Augusto Pinochet. In her case, electrodes were attached to her arms, legs and genitalia, just as they were attached to the Iraqi detainee poised on a box, threatened with electrocution if he fell off. The Iraqi man bound naked on the ground with a leash attached to his neck, held by a smiling young American recruit, reminds me of the son of peasant organizers who recounted his agonizing torture at the hands of the Tonton Macoutes, U.S.-backed dictator John-Claude (Baby Doc) DuvalierÆs right-hand thugs, in Port-au-Prince in 1984. The very act of photographing those tortured in Abu Ghraib to humiliate and silence parallels the experience of an American missionary, Sister Diana Ortiz,ö who was tortured and gang-raped repeatedly under supervision by an American in 1989, according to her testimony before the Congressional Human Rights Caucus.
    Torture University

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  • circularREASON
    Spoo Trader

  • circularREASON
    replied
    Its that kinda thing that makes you wish the American Indians
    had won.

    Leave a comment:

  • nanorc
    Confirmed User

  • nanorc
    replied
    Hey thanks for the link.

    Leave a comment:

  • bakana
    Confirmed User

  • bakana
    replied
    If you want to see just how Ugly American History can be, check out this website.
    The images are taken from Postcards sold in towns all over the US Celebrating Lynchings of black people.
    And not all of them were KKK Lynchings.
    Some places weren't that Organized.


    Lynching Postcards

    Leave a comment:

  • WalkingEagle
    Confirmed User

  • WalkingEagle
    replied
    Originally posted by cruiser
    Nightwatch and the Dept. Of Homeland Security have several things in common. That is why it would be easy to say that the One is as bad as the other. But that is not the case. Just because public transportation operators are being trained to look for suspicious behavior doesn't mean that they are going to be reporting seditous behavior.
    As was pointed out in the Time article you posted: The recruitment of others was denied by congress.

    If it's local neighborhood snoops getting involved in your personal business that your worried about then let's not forget about the Neighborhood Watch and DARE programs that have been around for decades now.

    Perhaps Bush Bashing would be best viewed somewhere else.

    When I had speech class in college the only banned topic was abortion. But one of the students got up and gave an anti-abortion speech the class became unmanageable and had to be dismissed early. Too many people felt to strongley about the subject to be able to talk about it in an orderly fashion. Perhaps this may be the case with this.
    No need to get upset by what Cruiser said. What he/she said is extremely important. Good intentions can very quickly turn into something ugly whether expressed secretively or overtly. Our country is no different than any other place on the planet. This is what we Americans seem to forget as a whole. In fact, we should all go back and review our history. It isn't pretty in the least. The comparison of "watchful" citizens can very very easily turn into "Nightwatch" of the worst kind as proven by recent American History of the 20th century. The 18th and 19th centuries were extremely ugly for many in this nation whom the "founding fathers" didn't want to consider Americans; i.e., the indigenous people to whom the continent belongs to and people held in bondage as slaves who were kidnapped from the African continent. We Americans had watchdog organizations against these two groups back then. The KKK (the Ku Klux Klan)is a terrorist organization responsible for the death of thousands of people since the mid 1800s. The KKK have only been outlawed once in our nation's history; and that was under President Ulysses S. Grant. President Rutherford B. Hayes helped reestablish the KKK and its acts of murder against ex-slaves and native american after he gained the Presidency through the same questionable means as George W. Bush. The KKK was considered a "watchdog" group by many Americans during those days. People would gather with picknick baskets and bring their children to watch the KKK and their supporters lynch men and women with the end result a burning on a pyre. Some were burned alive. This was America from the 1800s to the 1960s.

    Joseph McCarthy and his people thought they were doing the most patriotic thing. It cost people their lives and others their livelihoods. He thought he was doing what was best for America. So did J. Edgar Hoover. Both men were monsters in position of power who left a wide swathe of death and destruction. Did it make America and the world better? No.

    So what Cruiser said is extremely important and worth considering very much.

    Leave a comment:

  • ARangerWannabe
    Confirmed User

  • ARangerWannabe
    replied
    On or off topic...

    Just my 2 cents, but i do feel this DOES belong on topic. Sci-fi from it's very origins is a commentary on society, government, and current/recent events. It started out as a means for people to say in metaphor what couldn't (at that time) be said straight out, especially during the McCarthy era.
    The concept of Nightwatch, while rooted in Nazi Germany, could be applied to many different organizations. Since Sci-fi is often (definitely by JMS) used as metaphor to reflect certain movements and attitudes, i believe it is very relevant to discussing the B5 genre as a whole.
    Disagree if you will, and note i didn't take a stance on whether Nightwatch and Homeland Security bear great similarity. I do have a strong opinion on the subject, but feel it would detract from the point i'm trying to make in the first place.
    thanks, ARW

    Leave a comment:

  • cruiser
    I am the dreamer.

  • cruiser
    replied
    I have created a new thread in the off-topic discussion area with an identical thread topic.

    Leave a comment:

  • bakana
    Confirmed User

  • bakana
    replied
    Gee. implied attack right off the bat.

    Yes, I'm a US Citizen. Born and Raised.

    Are YOU a Republican or a Bush Supporter?

    (I realize the two are Not the same.)

    Now, Back to the topic:

    I was looking at the nice innocuous way the program is starting out:

    First, give them a neat window sticker. And a little wallet card.

    Second. An occasional meeting where they can pat each other on the back and congratulate themselves on their patriotism. And, of course, maybe have a few beers.

    Third. Give them a phone number so they can report "Suspicious" characters. Oh, and anyone with a bumper sticker they don't like...

    Once you've done that, wait a while, then start creating "Solidarity" among the membership.

    How about everybody just sort of agrees to wear the same style and color shirts & pants. Not a "Uniform". Just let's show out Pride in our Patriotism where Everyone can see who we are.
    Well, OK, a Uniform.

    Then, the cheerleading at meetings gets very "Pro Bush" and the mesage becomes make sure all your Family, friends and neighbors Vote and that they Vote The Right Way, of course.

    Keep track of those Unpatriotic Traitors who disagree with you. Maybe call that phone number about some of the more articulate ones. (Them smart bastids is Dangerous.) For the rest of them, well, their day will come.

    (It worked for Adolph in Germany. I think they called the payoff "The Night of the Long Knives".)


    What sort of people will this sort of program attract? Busybodies, goes without saying. Guys who think anyone who Disagrees with the "Party Line" is a commie pinko terrorist. Especially those who think CPTs should have their Butts Kicked and are ready to Join Up for a chance to get a boot or two in.

    It'll be Most attractive to the guy who wasn't quite acceptable as a Police Officer because he was just Too Much of a bully to stomach. The sort of guy who is all too willing to "Enforce the laws" the courts are too liberal wimpy to enforce. The Laws of GHOD as revealed by the voices in the beer can.

    We had that sort of organization once before in this country. It went by the initials KKK. They worked for "Free" and enforced all sorts of "Unwritten Laws of Ghod".

    And this time, they don't even have to buy new sheets for the bed.


    Now do you see the slippery slope ???

    Leave a comment:

  • cruiser
    I am the dreamer.

  • cruiser
    replied
    Where's the blasted v-chip when you need it.....

    Leave a comment:

  • colonyearth
    Confirmed User

  • colonyearth
    replied
    While such moves by and within our government scare the shit out of me...for the early stages of Nightwatch it is...have no doubt...I will say that I really and truly do believe this needs to be moved to the Off Topic section.

    We have many a long and often times heated discussions on such matters over a B5tv...but they are kept in the Off Topic area.

    I have been surprised, actually, that such discussions have not arisen here as well. Guess it was only a matter of time.

    As to coming to the forum to read about B5 and not wanting to read such matters...then my only advice to you, cruiser, is this (and I say this with all due respect): Don't read the thread.

    That all being said...I hope Doug will move this somewhere more appropriate on the forum. I love such discussions, but it really doesn't belong under Babylon 5 even with the loose tie it has to the series.

    This will get wildly away from the light comparison to nightwatch...I can tell you. Hell, it already has really.

    CE

    Leave a comment:

  • Andrew_Swallow
    Confirmed User

  • Andrew_Swallow
    replied
    Originally posted by cruiser
    Our military took an oath to never be caught flat footed again. 'Remember Pearl Harbor!!!! Lest we forget'

    Except the next surpise attack wasn't on a military target. It was civilian. Will you be next?
    The Pentagon is a military target. It was attacked on the same day as the two towers.

    Assume that a new enemy's first surprise attack will always get through.

    A realistic aim is to have the stategic and tactical flexability to stop the second attack.

    Leave a comment:

  • cruiser
    I am the dreamer.

  • cruiser
    replied
    Can you make this question somehow relevant to those of us who don't categorize opinion by nationality?
    Some of us do categorize by nationality....especially when it comes to internal security. But the important point has been made. As long as these initiatives are aimed at the proper target and not used to quell normal(?) dissent then they are 'good'. If others from other countries want to comment on the internal affairs of the U.S. then by all means do so. I just don't believe this is the proper forum for this subject.

    When I had speech class in college the only banned topic was abortion. But one of the students got up and gave an anti-abortion speech the class became unmanageable and had to be dismissed early. Too many people felt to strongley about the subject to be able to talk about it in an orderly fashion. Perhaps this may be the case with this.
    I come here to read and sometimes comment on B5. And I just don't like reality barging in on my recreation.

    I for one am most afraid of the U.S. becoming a police state. I come from Illinois, well known for it's handling of the 1968 DNC riots. Seeing the injuries suffered by those in the way of Illinois State Police vehicles wrapped in barbed wire whilst driving thru a crowd makes it somehow personal. Hearing their stories was even more frightening.

    Liberty and freedom of speech and all the other rights granted by the constitution and it's amendments should not be diminished just because of a terrorist act. But to bury your head in the sand and to act like it didn't happen violates the second law of armed combat: Do not ignore the objective realities of the situation. And we are in a combat situation. Only the battleground has been hidden away, only to be announced at the place and time of attack. And we have been attacked. Not by another nation but by an idealistic group of individuals. One of the only advantages we may have is to see the terrorists in the final days, hours, minutes or seconds before they attack.

    Our military took an oath to never be caught flat footed again. 'Remember Pearl Harbor!!!! Lest we forget'

    Except the next surpise attack wasn't on a military target. It was civilian. Will you be next?

    Leave a comment:

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