If you’ve marched against the Iraq war or flashed a peace sign during a rally, the Pentagon may be keeping an eye on you.
Really? I’m shocked. Not our dear democracy-promoting government. And certainly not this administration. I mean they value a good protest as much as the next Soviet. I know, I attended one back in January. Sure, law enforcement and barricades pushed away inauguration protesters nearly into Maryland, but the President saw us from afar. He smiled and everything. I’m sure he was thinking, “I’m Gon Git You Sucka,” but he acknowledged us all the same from inside his ride that was surrounded by a sea of gun-toting ready to bust a cap Secret Service Men. I guess I should take comfort in not being clubbed over the head and thank God I live in such a beacon of theo—err—democracy.
According to an MTV Think article and a segment that aired on “NBC Nightly News,” it seems like the military has been building a secret (well so much for that) database that includes information on all Americans who have attended peace demonstrations or have publicly opposed the war in Iraq. I always love a good throwback, and what better way for our government to get in on the fun than with a tribute to good old fashioned military-sponsored surveillance programs on its own citizens?
I’m looking for a “I Survived COINTELPRO” t-shirt on eBay as I write this entry. I bet it will look nice with any random Uncle Mike Mike’s Kangol.
The Pentagon refused to comment to NBC News, but a spokesperson did say:
“The Department of Defense uses counterintelligence and law enforcement information properly collected by law enforcement agencies. … The use of this information is subject to strict limitations, particularly the information must be related to missions relating to protection of DoD installations, interests and personnel.”
Is this code for “Don’t even think about protesting, stay your ass at home!?”
The Pentagon had previously acknowledged the existence of a domestic counterintelligence program known as the Threat and Local Observation Notice (TALON) reporting system. That system is designed to gather “non-validated threat information and security anomalies indicative of possible terrorist pre-attack activity.”
It’s nice to put a name with a stalker. With the Patriot Act in full effect and it’s meaner sibling Patriot Act II on the way, I’m debating on taking a trip over to Google to key in the words “dual citizenship.”
And isn’t it nice to find this article on MTV’s site of all places? We wouldn’t want the youth of America doing anything silly like protesting an unjust and highly unsuccessful war now would we? It’s better we scare them sooner than later. Smooth.