Monday, October 11, 2010

COINTELPRO all over again? PA government intel agency monitors Philly JwJ, other progressive local state organizations

Of course, not that I'm shocked, but...

In the middle of one of the worst economic crises in American history, our government is wasting taxpayer money paying a private international firm, the Institute of Terrorism Research and Response (ITRR) to monitor the activities of groups like Philly Jobs with Justice and the Brandywine Peace Coalition. Our peaceful 9/15 jobs action (about which we not only made all details public, but notified the city Civil Affairs office!) endorsed by organizations like Philadelphia NAACP and Philadelphia Coalition of Labor Union Women, earned us entire paragraphs in the bi-weekly, PA Homeland Security-funded ITRR bulletins. HuffPo has the details.

One particularly chilling quote they pull: ITRR brags to its contractor--our state government--about its work finding out details from "intercepted communications."

Just over a month ago, ProPublica broke the story that Pennsylvania's Office of Homeland Security contracted with the Institute of Terrorism Research and Response (ITRR), a private Israeli-based company, to assess terrorist threats impacting law enforcement priorities in Pennsylvania.

For almost a year, ITTR provided bi-weekly intelligence briefings to Pennsylvania Homeland Security which focused in equal part on "jihadist" communications and trainings throughout the world, and also social justice organizing and protests across the country.
Pennsylvania Homeland Security, in turn, distributed this information to 800 federal, local and state law enforcement agencies, along with "relevant stakeholders" like local businesses. Information provided included the political views and movement building strategies of hundreds of law-abiding groups and individuals.

Click here to download a PDF copy of their analysis of our 9/15 Jobs rally--your tax dollars at work.

Want to voice your disapproval in a strongly worded letter?

Write the editor at....


The Daily News: views@phillynews.com

City Paper: [online form]



5 comments:

Matt said...

Amazing - not only is the ITFF wasting time writing up you guys, they can't seem to separate real threats from would-be terrorists from amateur hour. One proposal the ITFF's worried about is terrorists selling infected food at "sporting events" - another threat is a balloon attack!

These guys are spending our money to describe rejected Batman theme villians to the state government.

Dr Stuart Jeanne Bramhall said...

I don't think the government has ever been interested in "terrorist" threats - that's just a boogeyman to make us agree to surrender our civil liberties. All they have been interested in all along is monitoring the kinds of anti-corporate/anti-government activicites ITFF is reporting on. Only now they are paying a private company to provide the service instead of doing it themselves. My question is does the ITFF also infiltrate groups and try to break them up the way Cointelpro did so effectively (not only in the 60s and 70s - but in Seattle in the 80s and 90s)? I write about my own close encounter with Cointelpro between 1987-2002 in my recent memoir THE MOST REVOLUTIONARY ACT: MEMOIR OF AN AMERICAN REFUGEE (www.stuartbramhall.com). I currently live in exile in New Zealand.

rashid1891 said...

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rashid1891 said...

In the middle of one of the worst economic crises in American history, our government is wasting taxpayer money paying a private international firm, the Institute of Terrorism Research and Response (ITRR) to monitor the activities of groups like Philly Jobs with

rashid1891 said...

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