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Forced blood draws, DNA collection and biometric scans: What country is this?

"The Fourth Amendment was designed to stand between us and arbitrary governmental authority. For all practical purposes, that shield has been shattered, leaving our liberty and personal integrity subject to the whim of every cop on the beat, trooper on the highway and jail official. The framers would be appalled."—Herman Schwartz, The Nation
Ploce State US
© Global Research
Our freedoms—especially the Fourth Amendment—are being choked out by a prevailing view among government bureaucrats that they have the right to search, seize, strip, scan, spy on, probe, pat down, taser, and arrest any individual at any time and for the slightest provocation.

Forced cavity searches, forced colonoscopies, forced blood draws, forced breath-alcohol tests, forced DNA extractions, forced eye scans, forced inclusion in biometric databases—these are just a few ways in which Americans are being forced to accept that we have no control over what happens to our bodies during an encounter with government officials.

Worse, on a daily basis, Americans are being made to relinquish the most intimate details of who we are—our biological makeup, our genetic blueprints, and our biometrics (facial characteristics and structure, fingerprints, iris scans, etc.)—in order to clear the nearly insurmountable hurdle that increasingly defines life in the United States: we are all guilty until proven innocent.

Thus far, the courts have done little to preserve our Fourth Amendment rights, let alone what shreds of bodily integrity remain to us.

For example, David Eckert was forced to undergo an anal cavity search, three enemas, and a colonoscopy after allegedly failing to yield to a stop sign at a Wal-Mart parking lot. Cops justified the searches on the grounds that they suspected Eckert was carrying drugs because his "posture [was] erect" and "he kept his legs together." No drugs were found. During a routine traffic stop, Leila Tarantino was subjected to two roadside strip searches in plain view of passing traffic, during which a female officer "forcibly removed" a tampon from Tarantino. Nothing illegal was found. Nevertheless, such searches have been sanctioned by the courts, especially if accompanied by a search warrant (which is easily procured), as justified in the government's pursuit of drugs and weapons.

Close to 600 motorists leaving Penn State University one Friday night were stopped by police and, without their knowledge or consent, subjected to a breathalyzer test using flashlights that can detect the presence of alcohol on a person's breath. These passive alcohol sensors are being hailed as a new weapon in the fight against DUIs. However, because they cannot be used as the basis for arrest, breathalyzer tests are still required. And for those who refuse to submit to a breathalyzer, there are forced blood draws. One such person is Michael Chorosky, who was surrounded by police, strapped to a gurney and then had his blood forcibly drawn after refusing to submit to a breathalyzer test. "What country is this? What country is this?" cried Chorosky during the forced blood draw. Thirty states presently allow police to do forced blood draws on drivers as part of a nationwide "No Refusal" initiative funded by the federal government.
Eye 2

Gulag archipelago: Chicago police are torturing and disappearing Americans at local 'black site' - How many more sites are there across the US?


Chicago's Homan Square 'black site'

Comment: It looks like what the CIA has been applying its manuals on disappearing and torturing civilians in other people's countries over the past several decades has finally come home to roost. You reap what you sow; or rather, you reap what you turn a blind eye to.


The Chicago police department operates an off-the-books interrogation compound, rendering Americans unable to be found by family or attorneys while locked inside what lawyers say is the domestic equivalent of a CIA black site.

The facility, a nondescript warehouse on Chicago's west side known as Homan Square, has long been the scene of secretive work by special police units. Interviews with local attorneys and one protester who spent the better part of a day shackled in Homan Square describe operations that deny access to basic constitutional rights.

Alleged police practices at Homan Square, according to those familiar with the facility who spoke out to the Guardian after its investigation into Chicago police abuse, include:
  • Keeping arrestees out of official booking databases.
  • Beating by police, resulting in head wounds.
  • Shackling for prolonged periods.
  • Denying attorneys access to the "secure" facility.
  • Holding people without legal counsel for between 12 and 24 hours, including people as young as 15.
At least one man was found unresponsive in a Homan Square "interview room" and later pronounced dead.

Brian Jacob Church, a protester known as one of the "Nato Three", was held and questioned at Homan Square in 2012 following a police raid. Officers restrained Church for the better part of a day, denying him access to an attorney, before sending him to a nearby police station to be booked and charged.

Take 2

Beating a dead horse: U.S. considering even more sanctions against Russia

© Evan Vucci/AP
The United States will be considering further sanctions against Russia in the coming days depending on whether there is progress on the Minsk peace agreements, US Secretary of State John Kerry said.

"The next step, if we take one in the next days, which is under consideration depending on what unfolds, will bring us into synchronization [with the sanctions imposed by the European Union and Canada]. Not only will we come into synchronization, but there will probably be additional sanctions," Kerry said at a Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing on Tuesday.

On February 18, Canada's Prime Minister Stephen Harper announced new economic sanctions and travel bans against 37 Russian and Ukrainian individuals as well as economic sanctions against 17 Russian and Ukrainian entities over their alleged role in the escalation of the situation in Ukraine.

The European Union ministers agreed on February 9 to freeze assets of individuals allegedly linked to eastern Ukrainian independence supporters, and ban their entry to the bloc.

Implementation of the new round of sanctions was put on hold because of the Ukraine reconciliation talks in Minsk, Belarus among the leaders of Ukraine, France, Germany and Russia.

During 2014, the United States and its allies imposed several rounds of sanctions targeting Russia's defense, energy and banking sectors, as well as certain individuals, over Moscow's alleged meddling in Ukraine's internal affairs.

Russia has repeatedly denied any involvement in the situation in Ukraine and has stressed that sanctions are counterproductive and hamper efforts to end the Ukrainian conflict.
Ice Cube

Gazprom notes Kiev cash-for-gas fail could cost EU its supply

Gazprom Ukraine
© RIA Novosti / Sergey Guneev
Aleksei Miller, Chief Executive Officer, Gazprom
Russia will completely cut Ukraine off gas supplies in two days if Kiev fails to pay for deliveries, which will create transit risks for Europe, Gazprom has said.

Ukraine has not paid for March deliveries and is extracting all it can from the current paid supply, seriously risking an early termination of the advance settlement and a supply cutoff, Gazprom's CEO Alexey Miller told journalists. The prepaid gas volumes now stand at 219 million cubic meters.

"It takes about two days to get payment from Naftogaz deposited to a Gazprom account. That's why a delivery to Ukraine of 114 million cubic meters will lead to a complete termination of Russian gas supplies as early as in two days, which creates serious risks for the transit to Europe," Miller said.
russian gas sales europe
© RT
Earlier this month, Russian Energy Minister Aleksandr Novak estimated Ukraine's debt to Russian energy giant Gazprom at $2.3 billion.

In the end of 2014, Kiev's massive gas debt that stood above $5 billion, forced Moscow to suspend gas deliveries to Ukraine for nearly six months. On December 9, Russia resumed its supplies under the so-called winter package deal, which expires on April 1, 2015.

Comment: Naftgaz is playing a dangerous game here. They are only the middleman for delivery of resources they don't own. Ukraine has declared its intention of adopting western culture and values. Well, here's one of the first rules of western-style capitalism: A vendor is within its rights to no longer deliver a commodity to a customer when that commodity is not being paid for. Ukraine can't have it both ways.

Dominoes

Supreme Court ruling further erodes 4th amendment - FISA warrants to remain secret

© U.S. Marshal's Office
Adel Daoud
Defense attorneys for the Chicago teen arrested for terrorism in a 2012 sting will be not have access to government surveillance documents, the Supreme Court ruled Monday, upholding a lower court's decision without comment.

Lawyers for Adel Daoud requested access to the surveillance application that prosecutors submitted to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) court to show that the teenager was targeted by an FBI-orchestrated sting because of computer searches related to a term paper. Last January, US District Judge Sharon Johnson Coleman ruled that for the first time such access ought to be granted. After the 7th Circuit Court overturned the ruling, Daoud's lawyers appealed to the Supreme Court.

"Without access to FISA materials, it is virtually impossible for defendants to challenge the lawfulness of the government's surveillance of them," Daoud's appeal said.

Daoud, a US citizen of Egyptian origin, was arrested in September 2012 during a FBI sting operation. According to the federal prosecutors, he was contacted by undercover FBI agents posing as terrorists in May that year, and discussed a plot to kill a large number of Americans.

The government claims Daoud picked out the target - a popular Chicago bar - while the undercover agents suggested and provided the means of carrying out the attack. The 18-year-old was arrested as he was allegedly pressing the button on a fake detonator, intending to blow up the bar.

Comment: The FBI has a long history of inciting and entrapping individuals who would have normally never been involved in terrorism plots. It's a tactic used by the government to further their fear mongering towards the public and justify restrictions on civil liberties. They've been doing it for years:

Chess

Some things Greece must remember about US foreign policy

George Papandreou greek politics

George Papandreou, leader of Greece in 1964

Comment: A short overview of US meddling in world affairs. The new Greek government must keep this pattern firmly in mind as they attempt to extricate themselves from the stranglehold the IMF/EU has on their country.


American historian D.F. Fleming, writing of the post-World War II period in his eminent history of the Cold War, stated that "Greece was the first of the liberated states to be openly and forcibly compelled to accept the political system of the occupying Great Power. It was Churchill who acted first and Stalin who followed his example, in Bulgaria and then in Rumania, though with less bloodshed."

The British intervened in Greece while World War II was still raging. His Majesty's Army waged war against ELAS, the left-wing guerrillas who had played a major role in forcing the Nazi occupiers to flee. Shortly after the war ended, the United States joined the Brits in this great anti-communist crusade, intervening in what was now a civil war, taking the side of the neo-fascists against the Greek left. The neo-fascists won and instituted a highly brutal regime, for which the CIA created a suitably repressive internal security agency (KYP in Greek).

In 1964, the liberal George Papandreou came to power, but in April 1967 a military coup took place, just before elections which appeared certain to bring Papandreou back as prime minister. The coup had been a joint effort of the Royal Court, the Greek military, the KYP, the CIA, and the American military stationed in Greece, and was followed immediately by the traditional martial law, censorship, arrests, beatings, and killings, the victims totaling some 8,000 in the first month. This was accompanied by the equally traditional declaration that this was all being done to save the nation from a "communist takeover". Torture, inflicted in the most gruesome of ways, often with equipment supplied by the United States, became routine.

George Papandreou was not any kind of radical. He was a liberal anti-communist type. But his son Andreas, the heir-apparent, while only a little to the left of his father, had not disguised his wish to take Greece out of the Cold War, and had questioned remaining in NATO, or at least as a satellite of the United States.

Andreas Papandreou greek politics

September 3rd 1974: Andreas Papandreou flaunting the famous "Third of September Manifesto".
Andreas Papandreou was arrested at the time of the coup and held in prison for eight months. Shortly after his release, he and his wife Margaret visited the American ambassador, Phillips Talbot, in Athens. Papandreou later related the following:
I asked Talbot whether America could have intervened the night of the coup, to prevent the death of democracy in Greece. He denied that they could have done anything about it. Then Margaret asked a critical question: What if the coup had been a Communist or a Leftist coup? Talbot answered without hesitation. Then, of course, they would have intervened, and they would have crushed the coup.1
Another charming chapter in US-Greek relations occurred in 2001, when Goldman Sachs, the Wall Street Goliath Lowlife, secretly helped Greece keep billions of dollars of debt off their balance sheet through the use of complex financial instruments like credit default swaps. This allowed Greece to meet the baseline requirements to enter the Eurozone in the first place. But it also helped create a debt bubble that would later explode and bring about the current economic crisis that's drowning the entire continent. Goldman Sachs, however, using its insider knowledge of its Greek client, protected itself from this debt bubble by betting against Greek bonds, expecting that they would eventually fail. 2

Comment: And there you have it. The US government has a history of covertly fomenting revolutions for nearly all of its history, and then categorically denying it. The presstitute media play their part in reinforcing the lie. Greece is in for another round of Gladio-style treatment. It can only be hoped they have learned from their past.

Eye 2

America's prison system looks more and more like its torture sites

guantanamo
© AFP 2015/ CHANTAL VALERY

In the years following the beginning of the Bush administration's "war on terror," a series of revelations have exposed the horrific torture practices used against prisoners at Guantanamo Bay, CIA "black sites" and other prisons abroad, as a matter of state policy.


These barbaric practices, which were documented in stomach-churning detail in the CIA torture report released last year, are rooted in the aims of US imperialism to plunder and dominate the world, and to suppress by force all opposition to its predatory aims. But the same ruling class that is waging imperialist war abroad is waging a class war at home, presiding over the enormous enrichment of the financial oligarchy at the expense of the working class.

There is no hard line between the foreign and domestic policy, a fact that was given concreteness this week in the revelation, published in the Guardian newspaper, that one of the top interrogators at Guantanamo Bay had pioneered the methods he used at the torture camp working as a detective in Chicago.

Comment: America's police state will continue to take off its mask, and there's no escaping what's underneath. Also see:

Quenelle

Another Obamacare screw-up just in time for tax season

obamacare disaster
Sometimes one can't help but wonder if this whole Obamacare fiasco is ever going to end. It's like a recurring bad dream...an infinite nightmare that keeps returning, with new plot twists and horrible surprises every evening.

The latest blunder (to put it mildly) involves tax forms.

From the AP:
In a new setback for the health care law and the people it's supposed to help, the government said Friday it made a tax-reporting error that's fouling up the filings of nearly a million Americans.

After a successful sign-up season, the latest goof could signal new problems with the complex links between President Barack Obama's health care overhaul and the nation's income tax system.

Officials said the government sent the wrong tax information to about 800,000 HealthCare.gov customers, and they're asking those affected to delay filing their 2014 returns. The issue involves a new government form called a 1095-A, which is like a W-2 form for health care for people who got subsidized private coverage under Obama's law.

People can find out whether they're affected by logging in to their accounts at HealthCare.gov, where they should find a message indicating whether they were affected or not. They also can check by phoning the federal customer service center at 800-318-2596.

Separately, California announced earlier that it had sent out inaccurate tax forms affecting about 100,000 households. The state is not part of the federal market but runs its own insurance exchange.

Comment: As if it weren't bad enough that American citizens are extorted into buying into the sick-care system, they're given an extra kick in the pants attempting to sign up on the Obamacare website and now this tax debacle. Thanks, DHS!

Bad Guys

IS kidnappings continue with at least 90 Assyrian Christians in northeast Syria

© Reuters / Stringer
Islamic State has kidnapped at least 90 Assyrian Christians in northeast Syria, Reuters reported, citing a monitoring group.

The abductions happened after dawn, as villages inhabited by the ancient Christian minority were raided by the terrorist group near the town of Tel Hmar, according to the UK-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights.

Tel Hmar is situated in the countryside of the city of Hasaka, controlled primarily by Kurds.

The monitor had no details on the abducted people, except that they were kidnapped from two villages, Tal Shamiram and Tal Hermuz, following the attack by Islamic State fighters, AFP reported.

Comment: On and on it goes, where it will end, nobody knows. With the Syrian Kurds making advances on IS, maybe the kidnappings serve as protection for IS by threatening to kill them if the Kurds continue their advance?

Calculator

53 cases of admitted false flag attacks by governments

"A history of false flag attacks used to manipulate the minds of the people! "In individuals, insanity is rare; but in groups, parties, nations, and epochs it is the rule."
― Friedrich Nietzsche
"Terrorism is the best political weapon for nothing drives people harder than a fear of sudden death".
- Adolph Hitler
"Why of course the people don't want war ... But after all it is the leaders of the country who determine the policy, and it is always a simple matter to drag the people along, whether it is a democracy, or a fascist dictatorship, or a parliament, or a communist dictatorship ... Voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is to tell them they are being attacked, and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same in any country."
- Hermann Goering, Nazi leader.
"The easiest way to gain control of a population is to carry out acts of terror. [The public] will clamor for such laws if their personal security is threatened".
- Josef Stalin
There are many documented false flag attacks, where a government carries out a terror attack ... and then falsely blames its enemy for political purposes.

In the following 53 instances, officials in the government which carried out the attack (or seriously proposed an attack) admits to it, either orally or in writing:
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