The FBI and Domestic Spying: Interviews Available

“By re-establishing a dynamic where
any dissident group can be secretly accused of being linked to terrorism,
and subject to disruption, the government opens the door to domestic covert
operations that in the past led to orchestrated confrontations and
killings.”…Attorney General John Ashcroft is apparently planning to loosen safeguards
that have restricted FBI surveillance of religious and political groups. The
following critics of the move are available for interviews.

Attorney General John Ashcroft is apparently planning to loosen safeguards
that have restricted FBI surveillance of religious and political groups. The
following critics of the move are available for interviews:

NKECHI TAIFA
ntaifa@law.howard.edu

http://www.law.howard.edu/faculty/pages/ntaifa/profbio.htm

Nkechi Taifa is director of the Equal Justice Program at the Howard
University School of Law. She said today:

“Ashcroft would like us to trust the FBI with sweeping new powers.

“This is the FBI that tried to disrupt and
destroy numerous nonviolent organizations ranging from the Southern
Christian Leadership Conference to the Committee In Solidarity with the
People of El Salvador to Students for a Democratic Society.

“This is the FBI
that targeted Martin Luther King and framed Geronimo Pratt with murder.
Although the claimed purpose of the Bureau’s COINTELPRO [Counterintelligence
Program] action — which Ashcroft seems to want to revive and expand — was
to ‘prevent violence,’ many of the FBI’s tactics were clearly intended to
foster violence, and many others could reasonably have been expected to
cause violence.”

BRIAN GLICK
bglick@law.fordham.edu

Glick is an associate professor of law at Fordham University and the author
of War at Home: Covert Action Against U.S. Activists. Glick said today:

“Ashcroft is not just proposing to drop the limits for spying on violent
organizations — he wants to drop the limits, period. The FBI has a history
of violating the legal limits; there is no telling what they might do
without such limits.

“The document that launched the COINTELPRO operations
against the black social movements directed FBI agents to ‘disrupt,
misdirect, discredit or otherwise neutralize’ dissident movements. It’s not
just the surveillance part of Ashcroft’s proposal that is worrisome; it’s
the psychological operations, the false rumors, the planted media stories,
forged documents and the infiltration of dissident groups that the people
running the country dislike or fear.”

CHIP BERLET
cberlet@igc.org

http://www.publiceye.org/liberty/Security_for_Activists.htm

Senior analyst at Political Research Associates, Berlet is an author and
paralegal investigator who studies illicit government surveillance. He said
today:

“Surveillance of dissidents across the political spectrum is now
conducted through a loose network of government agencies, corporate security
and private right-wing researchers….

“By re-establishing a dynamic where
any dissident group can be secretly accused of being linked to terrorism,
and subject to disruption, the government opens the door to domestic covert
operations that in the past led to orchestrated confrontations and
killings.”

JIM REDDEN
jredden@portlandtribune.com

Jim Redden is author of Snitch Culture: How Citizens Are Turned into the
Eyes and Ears of the State. He said today:

“Even before September 11, the
government was running COINTELPRO-style operations against a coalition of
radical labor, environmental, and human rights organizations opposed to
corporate control of the global economy.

“The truth is, there’s a long and
sordid history of government operatives committing the very crimes they are
supposed to prevent and setting up dissidents with phony charges.”

For more information, contact the Institute for Public Accuracy:

Sam Husseini 202.347.0020

David Zupan 541.484.9167

[ also see related items:


Are You A Terrorist? Read the FBI’s Definition! – http://www.theexperiment.org/articles.php?news_id=1531

WATCH WHAT YOU SAY! – http://www.theexperiment.org/articles.php?news_id=1526

Many Held in Terror Probe Report Rights Being Abused – http://www.theexperiment.org/articles.php?news_id=1522

Surveillance powers: Changes being considered by Congress – http://www.theexperiment.org/articles.php?news_id=1517

The Crackdown on Dissent – http://www.theexperiment.org/articles.php?news_id=1095

U.S. Terrorism Report is a Big Fraud – http://www.theexperiment.org/articles.php?news_id=90 ]

Author: IPA

News Service: The Institute for Public Accuracy – December 4, 2001

URL: http://www.accuracy.org/new.htm