Friendly fire incident heaps more skepticism on official narrative behind raid
Paul Joseph Watson
May 7, 2013
Dzhokhar Tsarnaev. Image: FBI
Eyewitnesses to the shootout involving the alleged Boston bombers have thrown up another contradiction to the official narrative, asserting that MBTA Transit Police Officer Richard H. Donohue Jr. was not shot by Dzhokhar Tsarnaev but by other cops in a friendly fire incident.
Previous media reports had blamed the Tsarnaev brothers for the shootings of both MIT campus police officer Sean Collier and Donohue, feeding the narrative that the suspects were engaged in a desperate attempt to flee police by returning fire and throwing improvised bombs.
However, as we previously highlighted, footage from the raid suggests the brothers may have been trying to surrender as they came under a barrage of gunfire. Audio from the scene captures the suspects yelling, “chill out” and “we didn’t do it,” as bullets seem to fly in one direction only.
Add this to the claim of the aunt of Tamerlan Tsarnaev, that the footage which emerged of police arresting a naked uninjured man was her nephew, contradicting the official narrative that Tsarnaev was critically injured in a shootout and suggesting he may have been killed while in custody, and it’s easy to see why some are questioning whether the raid unfolded exactly as authorities claimed.
Eyewitnesses to the shootout also contradicted claims by police that Dzhokhar Tsarnaev ran over his own brother in a car, stating instead that he was run over by police.
“Eyewitness accounts strongly suggest that MBTA Transit Police Officer Richard H. Donohue Jr. was shot and nearly killed by a fellow officer in Watertown April 19 during the hail of gunfire unleashed on Dzhokhar Tsarnaev as the suspected terrorist made a getaway in a carjacked sport utility vehicle,” reports the Boston Globe.
Witnesses who lived close to the scene of the shootout said they clearly remember Donohue falling to the ground while Dzhokhar Tsarnaev was speeding away in an SUV.
“A black SUV appeared, and rapid gun fire was focused on the vehicle,” Jane Dyson wrote in a statement provided to the Globe. “It appeared to me that an individual at the corner [of the street] fell to the ground and had probably been hit in the gunfire,” adding that the officer appeared to be a victim of “friendly fire.”
The report notes how the suspects were no longer armed at this point, “suggesting that the shot that wounded (Donohue) came from police.”
In addition, when cops apprehended Dzhokhar Tsarnaev the next evening he did not have a gun and only one other gun was found at the scene of the shootout, again confounding claims that the brothers could have returned anything near the 300 rounds ammo police fired at them.
The fact that Dzhokhar Tsarnaev was unarmed before he was caught also debunks initial claims by authorities that he had engaged in a “shootout” with cops while hiding in a boat.
Donohue almost bled to death at the scene and was in critical condition when taken to hospital but is now expected to make a full recovery.
Skeptics of the official story suggest that the brothers could have been just two members of a wider plot or that they could have been convenient patsies, having allegedly been under the tutelage of the FBI for years before the bombings.
The suspects’ mother Zubeidat Tsarnaeva continues to insist that her sons are innocent, telling the Associated Press last week, “It’s all lies and hypocrisy.”
Friendly fire incidents involving police have become commonplace across the United States. An incident outside the Empire State Building last August in New York left 9 people injured as police fired wildly during a shootout with a gunman. During the Christopher Dorner manhunt in February, LA cops also fired at numerous innocent people they mistook for Dorner.
April 30, 2013
The emerging narrative on the Boston bombings and the role allegedly played by the now deceased Tamerlan Tsarnaev hinges on a shadowy figured the government calls “Misha.” It is said the red-bearded Armenian Muslim lives in the Boston area, but could not be located by the authorities or the corporate media.
Ruslan Tsarni, the uncle of the Tsarnaev brothers who is allegedly aCIA operative, told the media Tamerlan Tsarnaev was brainwashed by Misha. “It seemed to me that Misha had influence on Tamerlan,” Uncle Ruslan said. “This person just took his brain. He just brainwashed him completely.”
On Saturday, the FBI claimed it had tracked down the mysterious Armenian. “Two U.S. officials close to the investigation say the FBI has identified an individual believed to be Misha. The officials would not say whether the FBI has spoken to him but say they’ve found no ties to the attack or terrorism in general,” theAssociated Press reported.
The FBI statement was followed by an article appearing in the New York Review of Books. “Today I was able to meet ‘Misha,’ whose real name is Mikhail Allakhverdov,” writes Christian Caryl.
Having been referred by a family in Boston that was close to the Tsarnaevs, I found Allakhverdov at his home in Rhode Island, in a lower middle class neighborhood, where he lives in modest, tidy apartment with his elderly parents. He confirmed he was a convert to Islam and that he had known Tamerlan Tsarnaev, but he flatly denied any part in the bombings. “I wasn’t his teacher. If I had been his teacher, I would have made sure he never did anything like this,” Allakhverdov said.
Misha, aka Allakhverdov, said he never met the Tsarnaev family who accuse him of radicalizing Tamerlan. Allakhverdov said he is “cooperating entirely with the FBI. I gave them my computer and my phone and everything I wanted to show I haven’t done anything. And they said they are about to return them to me. And the agents who talked told me they are about to close my case.”
The FBI declined to comment.
It looks like the Tsarnaev radicalization meme will now need a major rewrite if the government is going to convince us that the Boston bombing was the result of Islamic radicalization and hatred of the United States. As it now stands, there is no evidence that Tamerlan Tsarnaev was radicalized by Misha or that his visits to a mosque in the city of Makhachkala in southern Russia radicalized him.
“There is no politics here,” the imam of the mosque on Kotrova Street, Khasan-Khadzhi Gasanaliev, told Time last week. “Our law is Shari‘a. You come here to pray and you leave. Anyone can come here. Nobody will ask you who you are. That is part of Shari‘a…. They are making elephants from flies.”
Gasanaliev told the magazine it is virtually impossible for the mosque to be involved in radical Salafist activities since it is “watched by the security services with a magnifying glass,” according to Time.
The Russian version of the FBI, the FSB, told Time that associating with the Salafi movement is enough to get a Muslim on a counterterrorism watch list in Russia. That’s why Tsarnaev’s visit to the mosque resulted in getting him pegged as a radical Muslim.
With Misha and the Kotrova Street mosque out of the equation, officialdom now insists the Tsarnaev brothers were “self-radicalized,” according to Time. Their “views were shaped by what they saw online and knew of U.S. actions in the Muslim world.”
Tsarnaev’s connection to the Caucasus Fund and the Jamestown Foundation – a documented CIA front (see Tamerlan Tsarnaev Attended CIA-sponsored Workshop) – needs to be examined. The claim made by the Russian newspaper Izvestia that Tamerlan Tsarnaev traveled to Georgia to participate in a workshop will of course be studiously ignored as the establishment plods on its way and clumsily works to portray the brothers as Islamic radicals instead of what they obviously are – patsies like any number of patsies churned out the CIA and set-up for theatrical propaganda value by the FBI.
Authorities identify Zubeidat Tsarnaeva as terrorist suspect
Paul Joseph Watson
April 29, 2013
The mother of the Boston bombing suspects continues to insist that her sons are innocent, while the media responds by portraying Zubeidat Tsarnaeva as a terrorist herself after reports that Russian authorities intercepted phone calls during which she “vaguely discussed jihad with her elder son.”
“It’s all lies and hypocrisy,” Tsarnaeva told The Associated Press in Dagestan. “I’m sick and tired of all this nonsense that they make up about me and my children. People know me as a regular person, and I’ve never been mixed up in any criminal intentions, especially any linked to terrorism.”
The AP report notes that in recent years Tsarnaeva, “began wearing a hijab and cited conspiracy theories about 9/11 being a plot against Muslims,” implying that wearing an item of clothing and being skeptical of the official narrative behind 9/11 is itself a likely indication of terrorism.
It has also emerged that Tsarnaeva herself was put on a terrorist watch list after the Russian government suspected her of militancy in 2011.
Several members of the alleged bombers’ family have claimed that the two brothers are just patsies, including the aunt of Tamerlan Tsarnaev, who claims that the footage which emerged of police arresting a naked uninjured man was her nephew, contradicting the official narrative that Tsarnaev was critically injured in a shootout.
April 29, 2013
WND reports today:
According to a pair of recent polls, for the first time since the 9/11 terrorist hijackings, Americans are more fearful their government will abuse constitutional liberties than fail to keep its citizens safe.
Even in the wake of the April 15 Boston Marathon bombing – in which a pair of Islamic radicals are accused of planting explosives that took the lives of 3 and wounded over 280 – the polls suggest Americans are hesitant to give up any further freedoms in exchange for increased “security.”
A Fox News survey polling a random national sample of 619 registered voters the day after the bombing found despite the tragic event, those interviewed responded very differently than following 9/11.
For the first time since a similar question was asked in May 2001, more Americans answered “no” to the question, “Would you be willing to give up some of your personal freedom in order to reduce the threat of terrorism?”
Of those surveyed on April 16, 2013, 45 percent answered no to the question, compared to 43 percent answering yes.
In May 2001, before 9/11, the balance was similar, with 40 percent answering no to 33 percent answering yes.
But following the terrorist attacks of 9/11, the numbers flipped dramatically, to 71 percent agreeingto sacrifice personal freedom to reduce the threat of terrorism.
Subsequent polls asking the same question in 2002, 2005 and 2006 found Americans consistently willing to give up freedom in exchange for security. Yet the numbers were declining from 71 percent following 9/11 to only 54 percent by May 2006.
Now, it would seem, the famous quote widely attributed to Benjamin Franklin – “They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety” – is holding more sway with Americans than it has in over a dozen years.
A similar poll sampling 588 adults, conducted on April 17 and 18 for the Washington Post, also discovered the change in attitude.
“Which worries you more,” the Post asked, “that the government will not go far enough to investigate terrorism because of concerns about constitutional rights, or that it will go too far in compromising constitutional rights in order to investigate terrorism?”
The poll found 48 percent of respondents worry the government will go too far, compared to 41 percent who worry it won’t go far enough.
And similar to the Fox News poll, the Post found the worry to be a fresh development, as only 44 percent worried the government would go too far in January 2006 and only 27 percent worried the government would go too far in January 2010.
The Fox News poll found that a bare majority of Democrats (51%) would give up more personal freedom to reduce the threat of terror, while only 47% of Republicans – and a mere 29% of independents – would do so.
This is not entirely surprising.
As we noted in February:
For years, “conservative” pollsters have said that Americans are furious at the government:
- Gallup noted in 2011 that a higher percentage of American liked King George during the colonial days than currently like Congress
- And last year, Gallup noted that trust was plummeting in virtually all institutions
Liberals may be tempted to think that this is a slanted perspective. But non-partisan and liberal pollsters are saying the same thing:
- The Washington Post reported in 2011 that Congress was less popular thancommunism, BP during the Gulf oil spill or Nixon during Watergate
- Public Policy Polling added last month that Congress is also less popular thancockroaches, lice, root canals, colonoscopies, traffic jams, used car salesman and Genghis Khan
- And the liberal Pew Charitable Trusts noted last week that – for the first time – amajority of the public says that the federal government threatens their personal rights and freedoms:
The latest national survey by the Pew Research Center for the People & the Press, conducted Jan. 9-13 among 1,502 adults, finds that 53% think that the federal government threatens their own personal rights and freedoms while 43% disagree.
In March 2010, opinions were divided over whether the government represented a threat to personal freedom; 47% said it did while 50% disagreed. In surveys between 1995 and 2003, majorities rejected the idea that the government threatened people’s rights and freedoms.
The survey finds continued widespread distrust in government. About a quarter of Americans (26%) trust the government in Washington to do the right thing just about always or most of the time; 73% say they can trust the government only some of the time or volunteer that they can never trust the government.
Majorities across all partisan and demographic groups express little or no trust in government.
Obviously, Democrats are currently more trusting in government than Republicans. For example:
The Pew Research Center’s 2010 study of attitudes toward government found that, since the 1950s, the party in control of the White House has expressed more trust in government than the so-called “out party.”
But given that even a growing percentage of Dems believe that government is a threat to their freedom, things are indeed getting interesting …
April 28, 2012
The Gestapo would be proud.
Philadelphia, home of the Constitution, has issued instructions on how to “shelter in place” following the successful police state lockdown in Boston.
“During last week’s events in Boston, residents were told to ‘shelter in place,’ which raises the question, would you know what to do if a similar order was issued in Philadelphia?” CBS Philly asks.
The news article provides a link to agovernment web page containing instructions on how to “shelter in place.” The instructions are tailored for “emergencies involving contaminated air,” but may be used for a more generalized emergency such as an order for citizens to stay indoors after the city is locked down, possibly in response to an unarmed teenager on the loose.
The Boston police state lockdown was a beta test. It went over swimmingly. Residents obeyed orders and stayed in their homes. Grocery stores closed. Hospitals were inaccessible. Roads were empty. Schools closed down. Taxi cabs didn’t run. Local business lost millions of dollars in revenue.
Then the police conducted a Fourth Amendment busting door-to-door search looking for the teenager. People went along with this, largely without question. They obeyed orders to leave their homes with hands on their heads. It resembled something out of Nazi Germany, circa 1936. Its efficiency would have made the Gestapo proud.
Later, after the allegedly dangerous teenager was arrested, citizens ran out in the street and chanted “USA, USA!” Sports fans added government-worshipping chants to their repertoire.
Mission accomplished. Now other cities are preparing to see if citizens will follow orders and “shelter in place” if told to do so by “the authorities.”
Get ready. It’s a distinct possibility “shelter in place” will be coming to your neighborhood soon, especially after the display of groveling submission in Watertown, Massachusetts.
April 28, 2013
The mega-hyped Boston bombing has given the police state a mega-boost. All across the nation, people are on pins and needles, afraid of the next terror bombing.
It doesn’t seem to matter that you are more than a thousand times more likely to die in a car accident than in a terrorist attack. People are suckers for government propaganda. If the government tells them terrorists are a threat, they usually believe it despite the fact dying or even getting injured in a terrorist attack is at best a remote possibility.
Authorities and cop shops all around the nation are gearing up for the next phase of the police state. Now that the establishment media has successfully convinced millions of Americans that al-Qaeda and Chechen immigrants are out to get them, it’s time to ramp up the Stasi police state.
For instance, in Pittsburgh, the cops are encouraging folks to call 911 if they “see something.” Actually seeing something is more likely now because the new terrorists look like a lot of Americans – white people from Europe. In the old days before Boston, it was difficult to see a terrorist. Most people on the street in America don’t wear turbans. They don’t look like Muslims from the 14th century. All of that changed on April 15, 2013, though.
“With the recent explosions in Boston, we are reminded once again that we must remain vigilant and aware of what is going on around us in our communities,” Allegheny County Chief of Emergency ServicesAlvin Henderson told CBS Pittsburgh on Friday.
All of the non-stop fear mongering since the Boston Marathon has paid off in spades. There were 186 reports of “suspicious activity” the week before the Boston Marathon. There were 311 reports of suspicious activity in Allegheny County the week after the bombings, according to CBS News.
No actual terrorist bombs were found, of course. People are now seeing bombs where none exist. All the fear and dread is great for Homeland Security and the military contractors busily preparing to fill the skies with drones and put up thousands and thousands of cameras and microphones on utility poles from Bangor, Maine to Escondido, California.
Mr. Henderson said we’re all part of the “Homeland Security package” providing safety from phantom terrorists we only see on television. It’s our duty to see something and tell the authorities something, no matter how inconsequential.
In fact, according John White, a parking lot attendant in Pittsburgh’s historic Strip District, it is our responsibility to rat out our fellow citizens if we see something suspicious. “As citizens of the city of Pittsburgh, you have an obligation to your fellow neighbor. You have to watch out for anything and everything,” White told CBS News.
All of this informing on fellow citizens will naturally require a further expansion of the police state. More cops will have to be hired. More grants from Homeland Security. More military equipment passed down to police departments from the Pentagon. More high-tech wizardry will need be invented.
Sooner or later, after the next terrorist false flag, somebody will decide the Fourth Amendment is antiquated and, really, too damn dangerous. Police lock downs will be routine following see somebody, say something incidents. Citizens will gladly obey like they did in Boston and Watertown. And they will stand on street corners and enthusiastically wave little plastic flags made in China and chant “USA, USA!” as the founding fathers roll over in their graves.
April 29, 2013
Forced lockdown of a city. Militarized police riding tanks in the streets. Door-to-door armed searches without warrant. Families thrown out of their homes at gunpoint to be searched without probable cause. Businesses forced to close. Transport shut down.
These were not the scenes from a military coup in a far off banana republic, but rather the scenes just over a week ago in Boston as the United States got a taste of martial law. The ostensible reason for the military-style takeover of parts of Boston was that the accused perpetrator of a horrific crime was on the loose. The Boston bombing provided the opportunity for the government to turn what should have been a police investigation into a military-style occupation of an American city. This unprecedented move should frighten us as much or more than the attack itself.
What has been sadly forgotten in all the celebration of the capture of one suspect and the killing of his older brother is that the police state tactics in Boston did absolutely nothing to catch them. While the media crowed that the apprehension of the suspects was a triumph of the new surveillance state – and, predictably, many talking heads and Members of Congress called for even more government cameras pointed at the rest of us – the fact is none of this caught the suspect. Actually, it very nearly gave the suspect a chance to make a getaway.
The “shelter in place” command imposed by the governor of Massachusetts was lifted before the suspect was caught. Only after this police state move was ended did the owner of the boat go outside to check on his property, and in so doing discover the suspect.
No, the suspect was not discovered by the paramilitary troops terrorizing the public. He was discovered by a private citizen, who then placed a call to the police. And he was identified not by government surveillance cameras, but by private citizens who willingly shared their photographs with the police.
As journalist Tim Carney wrote last week:
“Law enforcement in Boston used cameras to ID the bombing suspects, but not police cameras. Instead, authorities asked the public to submit all photos and videos of the finish-line area to the FBI, just in case any of them had relevant images. The surveillance videos the FBI posted online of the suspects came from private businesses that use surveillance to punish and deter crime on their property.”
Sadly, we have been conditioned to believe that the job of the government is to keep us safe, but in reality the job of the government is to protect our liberties. Once the government decides that its role is to keep us safe, whether economically or physically, they can only do so by taking away our liberties. That is what happened in Boston.
Three people were killed in Boston and that is tragic. But what of the fact that over 40 persons are killed in the United States each day, and sometimes ten persons can be killed in one city on any given weekend? These cities are not locked-down by paramilitary police riding in tanks and pointing automatic weapons at innocent citizens.
This is unprecedented and is very dangerous. We must educate ourselves and others about our precious civil liberties to ensure that we never accept demands that we give up our Constitution so that the government can pretend to protect us.
Former Congressman Paul’s article first appeared at the-free-foundation.org, the temporary home for his weekly column until his personal web page is up and running.
Paul Craig Roberts
May 2, 2013
If there is hope, you are it. You are motivated to find truth. You can think outside the box. You can see through propaganda. You are the remnant with the common sense that once was a common American virtue. You come to this site, because you get explanations that are not agenda-driven, that are not BS, that are not right-wing or left-wing, conservative or liberal, Republican or Democrat. You get explanations based on my lifetime of unique education and experience. Some of you are young enough to be equipped with the energy and courage to organize whatever resistance there may be to the Gestapo State that is descending on the United States of America. This is your site. Support it.
Until the George W. Bush Regime, I never thought that it could happen here. I could not imagine law professors and Department of Justice (sic) officials writing legal memos justifying, in the name of a hyped “war on terror,” the termination of civil rights for United States Citizens. We were the land of the free. The Constitution was our bedrock. Yet, the Constitution and Bill of Rights were easily taken away from the inattentive American people.
The Constitution did not protect native inhabitants and slaves who were not considered part of the American population, but the universal suppression in the US of non-whites’ rights produced in the end the civil rights movement that brought moral awareness of the wrongs and successfully hitched its cause to the founding documents of the country.
Where today is moral awareness as Washington bombs civilian populations around the globe? Where is the moral conscience of the the civil rights movement as the First Black President, the first member of the oppressed class to sit in the Oval Office, validates the Bush Regime’s assertion of the right of the unaccountable executive to ignore habeas corpus and due process? Not satisfied with this crime, Obama asserted the right of the executive branch to murder any citizen suspected, without proof being offered to a court, of undefined “support of terrorism.” Today all Americans have fewer rights than blacks had prior to the Civil Rights Act.
Anything, including a column critical of war and the police state, can be declared to be “in support of terrorism.” As the tyrant Bush put it: “You are with us, or you are against us.”
The print and TV media and many Internet sites got the message: Serve Washington’s agenda, and will you will prosper. Advertisers and the CIA will pump money into your coffers. Challenge us and you will be demonized and could face a military tribunal, indefinite detention, or assassination. Bradley Manning and Julian Assange are being persecuted for telling the truth.
So far, Washington has convinced the public that Washington’s terror is mainly limited to Muslims, who are obligingly demonized by print, TV, and much of the Internet media. However, if Muslim American citizens lack civil liberty, so do all other American citizens. Those who are safe are those who ally with the tyrant and remain subservient.
To ally with the tyrant, a United States citizen must have no moral conscience, no sense of justice, no compassion for the innocent and dispossessed. These are the worst kind of Americans; yet, they are the only ones who can succeed in the present environment.
Every time I write a column that is the truth or the truth as I am able to discover it, instead of hawking the propaganda line, I move up on the list of those who are persona non grata in the Empire.
A writer can find himself demonized and declared a kook simply by reporting findings from distinguished scientists, high-rise architects, structural engineers, first responders, and an international collection of high government officials. Not too long ago a writer or reporter for the Huffington Post discovered to his surprise that Pat Buchanan and I disagreed with all the wars that had been launched to protect us from terrorism. He asked me for an interview, and I agreed.
An hour or so after the interview was posted on the Huffington Post, I received an emergency call or email. He had been criticized for interviewing me, “for giving you a forum when you are a 9/11 sceptic.” He was unsure that it was possible for a Reagan presidential appointee to be a 9/11 sceptic and asked if I was.
I replied that I had reported the findings of scientists, architects, engineers, and the public testimony of first responders, because I thought these were qualified people whose opinions at least ranked equally with the politicians on the 9/11 Commission and the talking heads on Fox “News” and CNN, none of whom could pass a high school test in the laws of physics, much less high-rise architecture and structural engineering.
The Huffington Post writer panicked. Instead of taking down the interview, he felt impelled to assure readers and his boss that he had been deceived. He wrote at the beginning and ending of the interview that he did not know he was interviewing someone about the Iraq War who had given ink to those conspiracy theorists who raised questions about the truthfulness of the US government. He wrote that my views on the wars should be disregarded, because I wrote that scientists, architects, engineers, and first responders provided evidence contrary to the government’s claims.
And there you have it.
The Huffington Post has far more readers than I do, and far more money. There is no limit on the ability of the Huffington Post to tell and sell the lies of the Agenda.
I can remember when I was a Wall Street Journal editor and columnist, a Business Week columnist, a Scripps Howard News Service columnist and appeared regularly in the major mainstream print media and even from time to time on TV talking head programs. Today, the editor or producer who gave me a forum would be fired instantly, and they all know it.
It is discouraging that after so many transparent lies and orchestrations–weapons of mass destruction, al-Qaeda connections, Iranian nukes–the majority of Americans still believe the government. Americans are even buying into the line that Syria is ruled by a brutal dictator whose overthrow justifies Washington’s alliance with its 9/11 enemy, al-Qaeda, in order to overthrow a secular ruler who constrains al-Qaeda.
Washington has come full circle. Its enemy is now its ally. Washington wasted trillions of dollars and countless lives in eleven years of war and constructed a domestic police state all in order to combat al Qaeda with whom Washington is now allied against the Syrian government.
The public’s response to the Boston Marathon Bombing is even more discouraging. Not even King George and his Redcoats could achieve what Homeland Security just pulled off–locking down 100 square miles of Boston and its suburbs with heavily armed troops tramping through citizens’ homes barking harsh orders, all justified by a hunt for one 19-year old suspect. It was the Third Reich’s Gestapo in operation right here in “freedom and democracy” America. Ron Paul is correct that the suspension of civil liberty is a greater threat than the bombing. Note the government’s euphemism for martial law–”shelter-in-place.”
Two brothers have been convicted in the media and by the Obama Regime, including the president’s own words, of a bombing without the public ever being presented with any evidence except anonymous unattributed reports and a film of the alleged brothers walking with backpacks, which were ubiquitous.
I am old enough to remember when it was impermissible for government and media to convict a person prior to the jury’s verdict. Americans once lived in a free country governed by the rule of law in which a person was innocent until proven guilty.
What was the reason or evidence for naming the brothers suspects? Was any reason given, or was the film of the two walking with backpacks simply shown over and over, hour after hour, day after day, with the media reporting that these are the suspects. In other words, was it beat into your brain that they were suspects because there they are in the film? If not, why was the same film shown repeatedly? Fox “News” was still showing the film on April 26, eleven days after the bombing and might still be showing it. Did you experience: “Here are the suspects. See them. They have backpacks. See. We know that they are suspects, because, see, there they are.”
When is the last time the media investigated anything? A good candidate for investigation is the post-bombing rampage the brothers allegedly went on, robbing a 7/11 store (later contradicted by local police), killing a campus policeman, shooting a transit cop, high-jacking a SUV and releasing the owner.
Why would terrorists seeking to escape in order to strike again call attention to themselves in such outlandish ways and release a car-jacked owner to alert the police of the tag number? If the brothers were willing to kill police with gunfire and innocents with bombs, why release the guy whose vehicle they stole so he could inform the police of the license plate and make the brothers’ capture easier? What is the evidence, other than “reports from authorities,” that these events occurred or had any more connection to the brothers than the falsely reported 7/11 robbery that local police disavowed? Why does the US media simply accept whatever government authorities say?
Where is the evidence of a first shoot-out and a second shoot-out? The second shoot- out consisted of the authorities bombarding a motionless youth bleeding from wounds in a boat with multiple volleys of stun grenades and then multiple gunshots. The unconscious 19 year old was unarmed and unable to respond to the boat owner who discovered him. As he lies there, he is shot many times, including through the throat, and is on life support. But the very next day, according to the presstitute media, he is providing hand-written confessions.
Was the purpose of the reports of a murderous rampage to create fear among the population so that they would accept martial law and home invasions by armed troops ordering American citizens out of their homes with hands over their heads on the pretext that they might be harboring the Boston Marathon Bomber?
The videos of the street celebration in which Bostonians thank the police and of the two Boston families, if not scripted by actors, shows Americans who far from opposing the police state welcome it. A father says that he with his daughter in his arms was forced out of his home by troops pointing automatic rifles at their heads, but that he was thankful for the safety the police provided him by violating every civil right that the Constitution gave him. A woman says it was scary but that “the police are just doing their jobs.” Are Americans now so brainwashed that they attribute their safety to the presence of a Gestapo Police State?
Why have detention facilities been built? Why did Homeland Security purchase a billion or more rounds of ammunition? Why does Homeland Security have 2,700 tanks and a para-military force? Why aren’t these questions being investigated?
The US Constitution is the product of 900 years of human efforts to restrain brutal government and to make government subject to law. It only took Bush and Obama eleven years to get rid of it.
This is my quarterly appeal for your support. If you want this site to continue, donate. Unless it brings you more enlightenment than it brings grief to me, there is no reason for it to exist.
Boston Bombings Show Future Use For Police Drones
| By Maggie Clark Posted: 05/01/2013 9:50 am EDT
This piece comes to us courtesy of Stateline. Stateline is a nonpartisan, nonprofit news service of the Pew Charitable Trusts that provides daily reporting and analysis on trends in state policy.
By Maggie Clark, Staff Writer
Police and federal officers drive through a neighbourhood while searching for a suspect in the Boston Marathon bombings. Police, lawmakers and advocates are questioning whether police drones could have found the suspects faster. (AP)
Even if police drones weren’t used in the manhunt for the Boston Marathon suspects, drones have become central to the post-bombing discussion of surveillance techniques. Boston Police Chief Edward F. Davis said he wants to use drones at next year’s Boston Marathon, calling them “a good idea.”
Using a drone to pursue fleeing suspects like the Tsarnaev brothers would be legal under both state and federal law. But pre-emptively hovering drones over an event still makes many uncomfortable. Lawmakers in Florida, Virginia and Idaho already prohibit that kind of drone surveillance at events, and more are debating it.
“Every state bill would allow a drone in a manhunt or chase,” said Ben Wizner, director of the Speech, Privacy and Technology Project at the American Civil Liberties Union, “and there’s no question that law enforcement would have had probable cause to use drones in pursuit (of the Boston suspects). But states have decided that they don’t want that kind of constant-surveillance-use of drones at events, where everything is recorded.”
Despite the call for more surveillance cameras after the successful identification of the Boston suspects using video footage, opposition to police use of drones in Massachusetts is moving ahead. Republican Sen. Robert Hedlund, who is sponsoring a bill to regulate law enforcement use of drones in Massachusetts, wants to require warrants before police can use drones and place restrictions on how video footage collected from drones can be retained.
“My opinions about drone use haven’t changed since the bombings,” said Hedlund, who remains skeptical of any drone surveillance.
Florida lawmakers also balked at the idea of using drones for crowd control earlier this year. After an Orlando-area sheriff suggested at a state Senate committee hearing that drones could be useful in crowd surveillance at big events, like college football games or parades, lawmakers recoiled with references to Big Brother.
Still, use of an unmanned aircraft could have helped first-responders even more effectively assess the immediate threats following the explosions on April 15, said Mario Mairena, government relations manager for the Association for Unmanned Vehicle Systems International, which represents the industry. Hedlund’s bill, like the 30-plus other state bills making their way through the legislative process, would not prohibit drone use in emergencies like the one at the finish line of the Boston Marathon.
The response to the bombings is an important test case in the discussion surrounding domestic surveillance, said Ryan Calo, a law professor at the University of Washington.
“I don’t think (the Boston bombing) will reframe the surveillance debate, and people will persist in their skepticism (of drones) even after this event,” Calo said. “If attitudes about drones change, it will be over time, probably because of non-surveillance uses of drones that people get accustomed to, like in agriculture, or by hobbyists. That’s the way people are going to get acclimated to drones, not from police use.”
State Drone Limits
For all the discussion in statehouses, few police departments actually have drones that they can deploy, even in a crisis. As Stateline has previously reported, nine law enforcement agencies in six states use drones, and nine other agencies have applied to the Federal Aviation Administration to use drones in the future. According to the ACLU, at least 37 states have debated drone-related legislation this year.
In Massachusetts, Hedlund and eight other state lawmakers are sponsoring a bill that would limit how law enforcement could use drones, in preparation for a time when police agencies in the state actually have them. According to FAA records, no Massachusetts police agencies have applied to the FAA for permission to use a drone or been approved to use one.
The Massachusetts bill, like legislation nationwide, would require police to obtain a search warrant for any surveillance. Police could use drones to respond to an attack or a national security emergency, which likely would have included searching for the suspects in the Boston bombings.
In addition to state laws, police are bound by strict guidelines for drone use set by the FAA, which requires police agencies to get permission from the FAA before sending a drone into the sky to avoid hitting any other aircraft that might be in the same airspace. Police can only fly the drone within the line of sight of the operator, which essentially turns the drone into a remote-control plane with a camera on board. Additionally, the drone can only go as high as 400 feet and must weigh less than 25 pounds, which means that it can only stay in the air between 30 and 90 minutes.
For practical purposes, this means driving the drone to the scene, using it, taking it down and driving it away. Under these guidelines, said Stephen Ingley, executive director of the Airborne Law Enforcement Association, “You’re not going to be able follow someone for 10 miles. The (drone) would be able to do short surveillance before an event, maybe survey the crowd, and once an exigent event happened, the system would be up in the air…providing a different vantage point.”
Despite those limits from the FAA, state lawmakers in Florida and Idaho have enacted laws requiring a warrant before police can use drones, and Virginia enacted a two-year moratorium on any law enforcement use of drones. In all three states, however, lawmakers carved out exceptions for circumstances such as threats to national security or imminent danger.
Surveillance Expansion Unlikely
Privacy advocates acknowledge that in situations like the Boston Marathon bombings, drones can be even more useful than fixed surveillance cameras to quickly scan the entire area for evidence. Concerns pop up, however, when it comes to how the video collected from these cameras is organized and stored.
For instance, said Wizner of the ACLU, there are very graphic images of crime victims in the security-camera-collected footage, which under current federal policies will probably be retained indefinitely. Should the Massachusetts bill become law, any video footage collected from police drones that was not within the scope of a warrant would have to be deleted 24 hours after the collection of the video.
“Being a victim should not land you in a government database forever,” said Wizner.
In the near term, despite the calls for drones from Boston’s police chief, big investments in more surveillance do not seem likely for Massachusetts. “I don’t think there is a clamor for new or more extensive surveillance,” said Gavi Wolfe, legislative counsel for the ACLU of Massachusetts. “People are talking about standing up for freedom in the face of terror, and a rush to increase surveillance would run counter to that.”
Federal grants to states for emergency preparedness and homeland security are also at an all-time low. In Massachusetts, funding from the state homeland security grant program is down 76 percent over the last five years, as Stateline has previously reported.