Report: Growing mental health problems in military

Mental problems send more men in the U.S. military to the hospital than any other cause, according to a new Pentagon report.

And they are the second highest reason for hospitalization of women military personnel, behind conditions related to pregnancy.

The Defense Department’s Medical Surveillance report from November examines “a large, widespread, and growing mental health problem among U.S. military members.”

The 31-page report says mental disorders are a problem for the entire U.S. population, but that sharp increases for active duty military reflect the psychological toll of wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

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Northcom Backs Out of National Level Exercise 2010

Northcom has unexpectedly withdrawn from participation in National Level Exercise (NLE) with FEMA and the Department of Homeland Security. The Department of Defense announced on April 26 it was decoupling its Ardent Sentry exercise from the National Level Exercise.

Ardent Sentry is a Joint Chiefs of Staff directed and Northcom sponsored “homeland defense” exercise. It is one of a number of DoD and Homeland Security exercises that blur the boundaries between the Pentagon, the federal government, and state and local governments under the guise of combating terrorism and responding to natural disasters.

The Pentagon said it decided against the exercise after Las Vegas, the planned site for a post-nuclear-attack response exercise, pulled out in November, fearing a negative impact on its struggling business environment, according to the Washington Times. Officials said a new site could not be found.

“The official also said the Northern Command’s exercise plans for ‘cooping’ — continuity of operations, during which commanders go to off-site locations — also had been scratched,” writes Rowan Scarborough for the newspaper.

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Who Will Hold America Accountable for Its Crimes?

The website WikiLeaks has been garnering attention recently due to its publication of sensitive material that many in government (and elsewhere) would rather be kept private. Information on the site includes secret intelligence documents and studies commissioned by the U.S. government, which does not seem to appreciate the disclosure of such information, for fear of a public outcry over the content.

WikiLeaks was founded by human rights activists, journalists and experts in the intelligence field, with the aim of exposing intelligence agencies and governments that violate international law.

One week ago, the site published the video “Collateral Murder,” a tape whose images have since been shown on television networks around the world. It shows American military personnel in a helicopter carrying out the cold-blooded killing of twelve Iraqi civilians. WikiLeaks states that the incident occurred in 2007.

By publishing the video, the website has exposed the incident as a crime committed by the U.S. military in Iraq, as the camera mounted on a U.S. Apache military helicopter recorded the actions of the crew. Naturally, WikiLeaks has not disclosed the source that provided them with the tape, but the sound and visuals are so clear that there is no possibility of the U.S. Department of Defense refuting the fact of a crime having taken place or making skeptical remarks about the video being a fake.
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Pentagon investigating alleged spy operation

WASHINGTON — A Department of Defense official is under investigation for allegedly hiring private contractors to gather intelligence on suspected insurgents in Afghanistan and Pakistan, a U.S. official said Monday.

The official, who spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss the case, told The Associated Press that Michael D. Furlong directed a defense contract to gather information about the region that could be shared with military units. After military officials suspected that he was using Defense Department money for an off-the-books spy operation, defense officials shut down that part of the contract, the official said.

The story was first reported by The New York Times in Monday’s editions, quoting unidentified military and business sources as saying that Furlong, now a senior civilian employee at Lackland Air Force Base in San Antonio, Texas, hired subcontractors who had former U.S. intelligence and special forces operatives on their payrolls. The newspaper said some of the information collected by the contractors was used to track down and attack militants.

“The story makes some serious allegations and raises numerous unanswered questions that warrant further review by the department,” Pentagon spokesman Bryan Whitman said Monday.

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Pentagon Report Calls for Office of “Strategic Deception”

The Department of Defense needs to get better at lying and fooling people about its intentions. That’s the conclusion from an influential Pentagon panel, the Defense Science Board (DSB), which recommends that the military and intelligence communities join in a new agency devoted to “strategic surprise/deception.”

Tricking battlefield opponents has been a part of war since guys started beating each other with bones and sticks. But these days, such moves are harder to pull off, the DSB notes in a January report (.pdf) first unearthed by “In an era of ubiquitous information access, anonymous leaks and public demands for transparency, deception operations are extraordinarily difficult. Nevertheless, successful strategic deception has in the past provided the United States with significant advantages that translated into operational and tactical success. Successful deception also minimizes U.S. vulnerabilities, while simultaneously setting conditions to surprise adversaries.”

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Trijicon: We’ll Stop Putting Bible Inscriptions On Military Rifle Scopes

Trijicon, the company that produces the military rifle scopes with Biblical inscriptions, will end the decades-old practice and provide the military with modification kits to remove the markings, ABC is reporting.

General David Howell Petraeus also addressed the scopes this morning, calling the matter “disturbing and a serious concern for me.” That’s a markedly different response from the United States Central Command spokesman who minimized the significance of the New Testament inscriptions this week, comparing them to “In God We Trust” on currency.

ABC reports:

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Government posting wealth of data to Internet

WASHINGTON — The Obama administration on Friday is posting to the Internet a wealth of government data from all Cabinet-level departments, on topics ranging from child car seats to Medicare services.

The mountain of newly available information comes a year and a day after President Barack Obama promised on his first full day on the job an open, transparent government.

Under a Dec. 8 White House directive, each department must post online at least three collections of “high-value” government data that never have been previously disclosed.

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Pentagon cited for thwarting Guantanamo access

A federal judge held the Defense Department in contempt of court Thursday because it disobeyed a court order to videotape the release hearing of a Guantanamo Bay detainee.

U.S. District Judge Gladys Kessler had ordered the government to videotape the testimony of Mohammed Ahmad Said Al Edah, a Yemeni citizen who has been held at Guantanamo Bay since 2002. He petitioned for a writ of habeas corpus ordering his release in 2005 and testified by video conference at a closed hearing in June. The government was supposed to video tape his testimony, redact any classified information and provide a copy for public release. But the government told Kessler in July it had unintentionally failed to record Al-Adahi’s testimony, leading to yesterday’s contempt ruling.

Kessler’s order emphasized the need for the public and the press to observe court proceedings, even where classified information is involved. Noting the “intense national and international interest in the conduct of these proceedings,” Kessler explained that her purpose in ordering the videotape “was to ensure the maximum amount of public accessibility to the judicial process. By requiring the Government to videotape Petitioner’s direct testimony and cross-examination, and then make it public after classification review, the Court sought to ensure that the public would have an opportunity to observe as much of the testimony as possible.”

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White house announces 20 agency open government initiatives

Each of the 20 cabinet departments has unveiled a new open government initiative in response to the directive issued Tuesday by the Obama administration, the White House reports.

“This work represents only the beginning of an ongoing commitment across the Administration to create a culture of openness in government,” the White House stated in its release.

The White House categorized the new open government initiatives according to how they will increase transparency efforts. The Department of Justice, for instance, will begin providing its annual Freedom of Information Act report in a machine-readable format that will allow the public to track and monitor detailed statistics on Freedom Of Information Act requests.

Other agencies, such as the Department of Defense, the Department of Transportation, the General Services Administration and the United States Patent and Trademark Office, will make data available to the public for free download for the first time.

Still other agencies will disclose previously unreleased records, though not necessarily online. The Department of State plans to release new data about the conflict in Darfur from 2003 to 2009, while the Department of Agriculture will disclose the nutrition information of more than 1,000 frequently consumed foods.

Not all of the open government initiatives touted by the White House are entirely new however, according to the Huffington Post. The online media outlet reported yesterday that the open government effort announced by the Treasury department includes what it claimed is a “new report” on bank trading and derivatives that has actually been available since 1995.

Lawsuit demands info on government’s use of social media sites

The Electronic Frontier Foundation is suing five different government agencies for refusing to disclose their policies on investigations using social networking websites.

The lawsuit was filed Monday after the Department of Defense, the Department of Homeland Security, the Central Intelligence Agency, the Department of the Treasury, and the Office of the Director of National Intelligence failed to respond to Freedom of Information Act requests that sought all records and guidelines outlining the collection of personal information from social media.

The initial FOIA requests were made after recent news reports indicate that government investigations have been increasingly relying on social networking sites — in October, for example, the Federal Bureau of Ivestigation used Twitter to catch a man accused of bank fraud.

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America Owned by Its Army

Paris, November 3, 2009 – It is possible that the creation of an all-professional American army was the most dangerous decision ever taken by Congress. The nation now confronts a political crisis in which the issue has become an undeclared contest between Pentagon power and that of a newly elected president.

Barack Obama has yet to declare his decision on the war in Afghanistan, and there is every reason to think that he will follow military opinion. Yet he is under immense pressure from his Republican opponents to, in effect, renounce his presidential power, and step aside from the fundamental strategic decisions of the nation.

The officer he named to command the war in Afghanistan, Stanley A. McChrystal, demands a reinforcement of 40 thousand soldiers, raising the total U.S. commitment to over 100 thousand troops (or more, in the future). He says that he cannot succeed without them, and even then may be unable to win the war within a decade. Yet the American public is generally in doubt about this war, most of all the president’s own liberal electorate.

President Obama almost certainly will do as the the general requests, or something very close to it. He can read the wartime politics in this situation.
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DODEA wants answers to students’ declining performance on SATs

SAT math scores for students at Department of Defense schools are falling further below the national average.

For the third straight year, Department of Defense Education Activity students have seen their math scores dip, from 512 in 2006 to 498 in 2009. A perfect score is 800.

In 2006, DODEA’s math scores were six points below the national average. Now, they are 17 points below, according to test results released recently.

“We’re not happy with the scores. They’re not where we want them to be,” Sheridan Pearce, DODEA mathematics coordinator, said in a recent phone interview from Arlington, Va.

“We’re concerned by the trend.”

The SAT is divided into three categories: mathematics, critical reading, and — since 2006 — writing.

In critical reading and writing, DODEA seniors in 2009 compared more favorably to their peers across the nation, but those scores either were unchanged or dropped from last year.

DODEA’s average score in critical reading was 505, down four points from 2008, but four points above the national mean score of 501.

In writing, DODEA averaged 492, the same as last year, and one point below the national mean score of 493.

The stagnating and declining scores “are big enough to warrant some action,” said Steve Schrankel, DODEA chief of assessment and accountability.

Even so, DODEA’s SAT results follow a national trend of unchanged or declining scores over the last several years, he said.

“We don’t know why that is,” Schrankel said.

DODEA officials say they’re already addressing the math deficiency. But measurable progress will likely take time, they warn.

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Noteworthy New Publications

Former Federation of American Scientists President Jeremy J. Stone has published a memoir of his efforts to promote constructive dialogue in several of the world’s most intractable conflicts through his own organization, Catalytic Diplomacy.  Remarkably, writes Morton H. Halperin in a Preface to the memoir, “The conflicts that Jeremy sought to mitigate — US-Russian nuclear relations, China’s relation with Taiwan, North Korea’s relations with its neighbors, and U.S.-Iranian relations — have all been affected for the better by his efforts.”

The susceptibility of anti-satellite weapons to the control of international law is considered in a new paper called “ASAT-isfaction: Customary International Law and the Regulation of Anti-Satellite Weapons” (pdf) by David A. Koplow, Michigan Journal of International Law, Vol. 30, No. 4, Summer 2009.  Mr. Koplow is now Special Counsel for Arms Control at the Department of Defense Office of the General Counsel.

Effective congressional oversight depends not only on the good intentions of the overseers, but also on their familiarity with the legislative, investigative and other tools they have at their disposal.  But the skillful use of those tools has been largely a matter of tacit knowledge, handed down through the generations of congressional staff.  To help preserve and propagate the techniques involved, the Project on Government Oversight has published a new handbook entitled “The Art of Congressional Oversight: A User’s Guide to Doing It Right.”

UN says US drone strikes may violate international law

US unmanned aerial vehicle (drone) strikes against suspected terrorists in Afghanistan and Pakistan could be breaking international laws against summary executions, the United Nations top investigator of such crimes said.

“The problem with the United States is that it is making an increased use of drones/Predators (which are) particularly prominently used now in relation to Pakistan and Afghanistan,” UN Special Rapporteur on Extrajudicial Executions Philip Alston told a press conference.

“My concern is that drones/Predators are being operated in a framework which may well violate international humanitarian law and international human rights law,” he said.

US strikes with remote-controlled aircraft against Al-Qaeda and Taliban targets in Afghanistan and northwestern Pakistan have often resulted in civilian deaths and drawn bitter criticism from local populations.

“The onus is really on the United States government to reveal more about the ways in which it makes sure that arbitrary extrajudicial executions aren’t in fact being carried out through the use of these weapons,” he added.

Alston said he presented a report on the matter to the UN General Assembly.

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Nozette and Nuclear Rocketry

Stewart D. Nozette, who was arrested and charged this week under the Espionage Act, is an unusually gifted and accomplished technologist.  The allegation that he provided classified information to an FBI agent posing as an Israeli intelligence officer in exchange for cash is distressing on several levels.

Among other things, Nozette had exceptionally broad access to a range of classified programs in defense, space and nuclear technology.  According to an FBI affidavit (pdf), Nozette stated that he “held a DOE Q clearance from 1990-2000, which involved insight into all aspects of nuclear weapons programs.  Held TS/SI/TK/B/G clearance (see list) 1998-2006,… Held at least 20+ SAP [special access program clearances]… from 1998-2004.”

In fact, however, Nozette’s participation in Department of Defense special access programs dates back even earlier, to 1990 or so.  At that time he was read into an unacknowledged special access program called Timber Wind (pdf), which was an effort by the Strategic Defense Initiative Organization to develop a rocket engine powered by a nuclear reactor.  Dr. Nozette’s name appears on a Timber Wind master access list we obtained which identified the several hundred persons who were authorized to be briefed on that nuclear rocket program.

The discovery of the hyper-classified Timber Wind program was an inspiration for the FAS Project on Government Secrecy, since we considered it a compelling instance of classification abuse.  On a number of occasions I asked Dr. Nozette about the program, but he was always quite scrupulous about rebuffing my inquiries.

Timber Wind was canceled shortly after it became public, and other nuclear rocket initiatives likewise faded away in the 1990s, as the effort to develop nuclear rocketry for military or civilian applications surged and then collapsed, leaving behind only a bunch of good stories.

An idiosyncratic new memoir (pdf) by Tony Zuppero, one of the would-be nuclear rocketeers, tells those stories as he recalls them, with sometimes alarming candor, humor, and disappointment.  Dr. Zuppero had his own concept of a nuclear rocket that would open a path for human expansion into the solar system.  But, he laments, “after all the effort, all the visions, I got old instead of making it happen.”

Dr. Nozette, myself and the Federation of American Scientists make a few cameo appearances in Dr. Zuppero’s new memoir, entitled “To Inhabit the Solar System”.

Pentagon used psychological operation on US public, documents show

Figure in Bush propaganda operation remains Pentagon spokesman

In Part I of this series, Raw Story revealed that Bryan Whitman, the current deputy assistant secretary of defense for media operations, was an active senior participant in a Bush administration covert Pentagon program that used retired military analysts to generate positive wartime news coverage.

A months-long review of documents and interviews with Pentagon personnel has revealed that the Bush Administration’s military analyst program — aimed at selling the Iraq War to the American people — operated through a secretive collaboration between the Department of Defense‘s press and community relations offices.

Raw Story has also uncovered evidence that directly ties the activities undertaken in the military analyst program to an official US military document’s definition of psychological operationspropaganda that is only supposed to be directed toward foreign audiences.

The investigation of Pentagon documents and interviews with Defense Department officials and experts in public relations found that the decision to fold the military analyst program into community relations and portray it as “outreach” served to obscure the intent of the project as well as that office’s partnership with the press office. It also helped shield its senior supervisor, Bryan Whitman, assistant secretary of defense for media operations, whose role was unknown when the original story of the analyst program broke.

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New DoD Website Fosters Secret Science

Updated below

The Pentagon’s Defense Technical Information Center (DTIC) last month announced the creation of a new password-protected portal where authorized users may gain access to restricted scientific and engineering publications.

“DTIC Online Access Controlled… provides a gateway to Department of Defense unclassified, controlled science and technology (S&T) and research and engineering (R&E) information,” according to a September 21, 2009 news release (pdf).  “As defense S&T information advances, so does the unique community to which it belongs,” said DTIC Administrator R. Paul Ryan.

The cultivation of controlled but unclassified scientific research by DTIC seems to represent a departure [see update below] from a longstanding U.S. government position that scientific research should either be classified, if necessary, or else unrestricted.  (There have always been exceptions for export controlled information and for proprietary information.)

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Journalists’ recent work examined before embeds

As more journalists seek permission to accompany U.S. forces engaged in escalating military operations in Afghanistan, many of them could be screened by a controversial Washington-based public relations firm contracted by the Pentagon to determine whether their past coverage has portrayed the U.S. military in a positive light.

U.S. public affairs officials in Afghanistan acknowledged to Stars and Stripes that any reporter seeking to embed with U.S. forces is subject to a background profile by The Rendon Group, which gained notoriety in the run-up to the 2003 U.S. invasion of Iraq for its work helping to create the Iraqi National Congress. That opposition group, reportedly funded by the CIA, furnished much of the false information about Iraq’s supposed weapons of mass destruction used by the Bush administration to justify the invasion.

Rendon examines individual reporters’ recent work and determines whether the coverage was “positive,” “negative” or “neutral” compared to mission objectives, according to Rendon officials. It conducts similar analysis of general reporting trends about the war for the military and has been contracted for such work since 2005, according to the company.

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The Chicago Model of Militarizing Schools

For the past four years, I have observed the military occupation of the high school where I teach science. Currently, Chicago’s Nicholas Senn High School houses Rickover Naval Academy (RNA). I use the term “occupation” because part of our building was taken away despite student, parent, teacher and community opposition to RNA’s opening.

Senn students are made to feel like second-class citizens inside their own school, due to inequalities. The facilities and resources are better on the RNA side. RNA students are allowed to walk on the Senn side, while Senn students cannot walk on the RNA side. RNA “disenrolls” students and we accept those students who get kicked out if they live within our attendance boundaries. This practice is against Chicago policy, but goes unchecked. All of these things maintain a two-tiered system within the same school building.

This phenomenon is not restricted to Senn. Chicago has more military academies and more students in Junior Reserve Officers’ Training Corps than any other city in the US. As the tentacles of school militarization reach beyond Chicago, the process used in this city seems to serve as a model of expansion. There was a Marine Academy planned for Georgia’s Dekalb County, which includes 10 percent of Atlanta. Fortunately, due to protest, the school has been postponed until 2010. Despite it being postponed, it is still useful to analyze the rhetoric used to rationalize the Marine Academy. Many of the lies and excuses used to justify school militarization in Chicago and Georgia may well be used in other cities as militarism grows.

More about military recruiting of youth

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Shower up for your country, Honey

Several soldiers from the Virginia National Guard are under investigation for allegedly taking pictures of female soldiers in the shower during pre-deployment mobilization training.

The soldiers being investigated are with the 266th Military Police Company and are assigned to Multi-National Force-Iraq in Baghdad, according to a Department of Defense news release.

The misconduct allegedly took place at Fort Dix, N.J., in the fall of 2008.

Commanders in Iraq learned of the allegations on May 21 and initiated an Army Regulation 15-6 investigation on May 22. The Criminal Investigation Command began a criminal investigation on May 23, the release said.

Names of the soldiers have not been released.

Defense Science Board Report on Department of Defense Biological Safety and Security Program

Report of the Defense Science Board Task Force on Department of Defense Biological Safety and Security Program

“This report examines the biological safety, security, and personnel reliability programs of the Department of Defense‘s biological labs, and compares these labs with other similar operations in academia, industry and the federal government. The report offers recommendations for improvements in the DoD program based on this comparison. The task force found that safety and security of the DoD facilities that they assessed are as good or better than those in comparably sized facilities in other government, industry and academic sectors and that DoD regulations exceed those imposed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. While the program remains sound, the task force does provide recommendations to further improve on computer systems security, lab activity monitoring, inspection compliance and biological select agent and toxin transportation. These recommendations are detailed in the report and serve to further enhance current biological safety and security operations, while minimizing the impact on missions of the DoD laboratories.”

New Reports from DoD

The DoD Chemical and Biological Defense Program (CBDP) and Defense Science Board (DSB) have recently released a number of interesting reports:

The CBDP 2009 Annual Report to Congress discusses DoD’s progress in protecting the nation and its allies from WMD threats. Previous versions of the report can be found here.

Several DSB Task Forces released their final reports on Unconventional Operational Concepts and the Homland; Operations Research Applications for Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (ISR); Creating an Assured Joint DOD and Interagency Interoperable Net-Centric Enterprise; and Department of Defense Policies and Procedures for the Acquisition of Information Technology. Other DSB reports can be found here

Humboldt cities take on military recruiting — and U.S.

ARCATA – David was sitting in a coffee shop when he first got the idea to take on Goliath.

The “David” in this story has a last name of Meserve. The “Goliath” is less metaphorically known as the United States government.

And the tale revolves around a first-of-its-kind effort by two small Humboldt County cities to prevent military recruiters from trolling for prospects among the towns’ residents under age 18.

Virtually unnoticed by the rest of the world, voters in Eureka (population 26,000) and Arcata (population 18,000) last November approved ballot measures that were collectively referred to as “the Youth Protection Act.”

Passed by convincing margins (73 percent in Arcata, 57 percent in Eureka), the act prohibits military recruiters from initiating contact with anyone under the age of 18 within the cities’ limits. Violations can result in a fine of $100 for both the recruiters and their commanding officers.

See also:

Assembly Bills Aim at Recruiting Youngsters for Overseas Wars

ACLU files suit to allow counter-recruiting

Bush Profiteers Collect Billions From No Child Left Behind

Feds Act Against Eureka, Arcata Over Voted Measures to Restrict Military Recruiter Access to Minors

Military at ToysRus Austin

“No Child Left Behind “: “Trojan Horse” for Pentagon Recruiters

America’s Child Soldiers: US Military Recruiting Children

New Army Recruiting Tactic: Obama will “Get Us Out of Iraq”

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Pentagon Moves to Shut Down ‘Mullah FM’

Those of you hoping to tune into your favorite Taliban DJ are going to have to find something else on the dial. The Department of Defense, the Wall Street Journal reports, is launching a new covert war against the Taliban’s communications infrastructure in Afghanistan and Pakistan.

Pentagon planners are reportedly working to jam some of the over 150 illegal radio stations that operate along Pakistan’s ungoverned Northwest border region, making the airwaves a battlefield in the war to undercut the Taliban’s political base. In a region where literacy and development are sorely lacking, radio is a cheap, accessible media format — making it a popular source of news and entertainment.   In Pakistan, Taliban commanders like Mullah Fazlullah (a.k.a. “Mullah FM”) have exploited the medium’s appeal, using pirate radio stations to intimidate the residents of the Swat Valley and consolidate the movement’s hold on a strategic province.

Also listed as targets for the info war are the “Pakistani chat rooms and Web sites that are part of the country’s burgeoning extremist underground” which cater mostly to a wider, more international audience.  But the Pentagon may soon find that jamming radio stations in “AfPak” is easier than shutting down websites around the world. Thanks to a series of reluctant hosting companies, prickly legal issues and sympathetic jihadist forums, readers can still find online, in English and Arabic, today’s Taliban press release denouncing the Pentagon’s war on its propaganda.

US military Intelligence, ,Surveillance and Recon manual final draft and cover, FM 2-01, Mar 2009

Click image to view.

USJFCOM Releases New Irregular Warfare Vision

Irregular Warfare Vision

The U.S. Joint Forces Command (USJFCOM) Commander Marine Corps Gen. James Mattis has recently released a new irregular warfare vision for the command. “The vision provides guidance on how USJFCOM will respond to the threats posed by irregular adversaries. The vision prioritizes specific efforts necessary to achieve the objectives and guidance of the Department of Defense directive on irregular warfare.

The vision outlines a timeline and expectations from directorates and subordinate commands. Over the next six to 12 months the command will focus its IW efforts in concept development and experimentation, capability development/joint integration and interoperability, training and education, joint provision/global force management and external engagement.”

The press release is available here.

Glenn Beck and Penn Jillette on MIAC report

See also: The Radical Polarization of Law Enforcement

The Radical Polarization of Law Enforcement

The Radical Polarization
of Law Enforcement

Patriots, Christians and concerned citizens are increasingly in the cross hairs of the U.S. intelligence community, and battle lines are being quietly drawn that could soon pit our own law enforcement and military forces against us.

A February 20 report entitled “The Modern Militia Movement” was issued by the Missouri Information Analysis Center (MIAC) that paints mainstream patriotic Americans as dangerous threats to law enforcement and to the country. Operating under the Missouri State Highway Patrol, the MIAC is listed as a Fusion Center that was established in cooperation with the Department of Homeland Security and the Department of Justice.

Because authenticity of the report was questioned by some, this writer contacted Missouri state Representative Jim Guest (R-King City) who had personally verified that the report had indeed been issued. Rep. Guest is chairman of the Personal Privacy Committee and is a prominent leader in the national Blowback against the Real ID Act of 2005 that requires states to issue uniform driver’s licenses containing personal biometric data. (See Guest warns against Big Brother, Real ID)

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Wake Up Call: Activists Visit “The Army Experience”

On Monday, February 16th about 50 activists decided to take a trip to the Franklin Mills Mall right outside Philadelphia, PA to get their look at a new “store”. “The Army Experience” (AEC), as it is called, built by the taxpayers to the tune of $12 million, attracts local kids to play video games, most of which are high tech simulations of combat situations.

The group was made up of members from all over the area. World Can’t Wait from New York City and Philadelphia; Delaware Valley Veterans of America; Iraq Veterans Against the War; Veterans for Peace from the Philadelphia area; CodePink Women for Peace; Granny Peace Brigade; and, the Brandywine Peace Center converged on the mall at about 10:30 AM, greeted by a heavier than usual security force.

Army’s New Recruiting Tool – Video Arcade for Mallrats

Recruiters banned at RIT

Army recruiting stand-down ordered after suicides

Feds Act Against Eureka, Arcata Over Voted Measures to Restrict Military Recruiter Access to Minors

Military at ToysRus Austin

“No Child Left Behind “: “Trojan Horse” for Pentagon Recruiters

Pentagon Targets Afro and Hispanic Youth to Fight Its Wars

America’s Child Soldiers: US Military Recruiting Children

Military to bribe foreigners with citizenship for service

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Of Children and “Cyber Wars,” Another Witchhunt to Fund

February 17, 2009: The U.S. Department of Defense tries to keep track of countries that have established Cyber War organizations, or just capabilities. Now Germany has joined the ranks of countries with a formal Cyber War organization. Germany is putting together a Cyber War unit. It is small, with less than a hundred personnel. But Germany has a large number of Internet technology experts, and many civilian resources for a Cyber War unit draw on.Many of these Cyber War capable nations are trying to develop tools and techniques for attacking American military and civilian targets, via the Internet, in the future. In some respects, these Cyber Wars have already begun. In the last few years, the number of intrusion attempts on Department of Defense computers has grown to over 500 a day. The actual increase may be less than that, because as the Department of Defense increases its Internet defenses, it becomes better able to detect intrusion attacks. The number of intrusions that succeed, or at least the ones that were discovered, has been going down. But even a few successful intrusions can result in the loss of enormous amounts of valuable data.

A lot of information on the Cyber War against the United States is kept secret, since if the attackers know which of their operations are being observed, or even known about, they will take steps get their work back into the shadows. Half the battle in Cyber War is knowing you are being attacked. The best attacks, especially to steal information, or set up monitoring programs, work best, if at all, if they are undetected.

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