TC Indymedia Roundup #1: FBI Fallout; "Suspicious Activities" scheme spreading like kudzu; memorial for murder victim; Indymedia Africa convergence & more
In order to provide fresher features, the TC Indymedia Editorial Collective will produce a 'roundup' post of short news bits which might be of interest roughly every week. Publish your event announcements, press releases and news tips to TCIMC via the Publish link at the top of each page - or, if you're having trouble with the submission form or would like to speak to us individually, contact us here.
Do you remember Karen Sullivan? Another layer of deception & trauma added to our collective experiences last week as FBI operative "Karen Sullivan" who invaded several movements between April 2008 to September 2010 was exposed by the Antiwar Committee. (TCIMC's press conference live coverage was featured on Democracy Now!) Does anyone in the community have more images, video, or recollection of "Karen Sullivan"?
See Something Messaging Multiplies: The dubious federalized scheme called "See Something, Say Something" has resulted in the Homeland Security Emergency Management division of the Department of Public Safety posting photos of the indoor billboards around the Mall of America, Rochester Airport, Downtown Minneapolis to their Facebook. As TCIMC noted earlier the entire campaign is designed to get around the more restrictive Minnesota police data laws, according to MOA's security boss, and use the dubious new Suspicious Activity Report framework instead.
Memorial for first murder victim in Minneapolis: OutFront Minnesota's Anti-Violence Program is planning a vigil for Krissy Bates, a transgender woman who lived in downtown Minneapolis & was found murdered in her apartment on January 10 in what police are calling a homicide, the first of the year. The vigil will be held near MCTC, starting in the MCTC library on Friday, Jan. 21.
Government Data Requests in the Pipeline: Twin Cities Indymedia is investigating a number of key law enforcement & intelligence related subjects via Freedom of Information Act and Minnesota Data Practices Act requests. We need some funds to pursue larger blocks of data so please donate to TCIMC today. If we can drum up $200 or so for the purpose of obtaining data dumps we should be able to produce new info for months.
Introducing TC Indymedia livestreaming video: Last week we provided a live feed of the Antiwar Committee's press conference via an account on Livestream.com. This account will soon be able to host more than 50 viewers. If you want live coverage of your events please Contact Us. In order to broadcast live, an upstream Internet connection of about 50Kb/sec is required, and if possible a computer newer than about 2007, preferably with Flash and/or Livestream Procaster involved.
Also, iPhones and Android phones with the 'Qik' application installed can push live video clips from the streets to our Livestream account. Livestream injects one video advertisement per 15 minutes, and we would be happy to use another third party service if they can provide similar capabilities. (We can't afford the $350/month required to get rid of the ads!)
Indymedia Convergence at World Social Forum in Africa needs support: Is anyone from the Twin Cities attending the 2011 World Social Forum in Dakar, Senegal (6-11 Feb)? Indymedia organizer and part-time Minnesota resident Sphinx is helping setup the fourth Indymedia networking and training session in Africa, but some funding fell through. Help get Indymedia South Africa and new community radio projects going. Full info or check out the donation page for full details on the Indymedia delegations to Dakar. More info: Conversation with an Indymedia Activist by Uprising Radio | Interview with Sphinx from Indymedia Africa (Ambazonia) by Indymedia On Air. Sphinx's video: Standing with the Students (23 Min).
MARS still working on a new autonomous space: The Minneapolis Autonomous Radical Space (MARS) Collective is still working on getting a space set up. Get involved here. Events with Ryan Olander and Gal from Anarchists Against the Wall were well-received - see the video here by Bill Sorem for TheUptake and audio interview with Flor Razowsky & MN Break the Bonds too.
The Raw Milk Crackdown for 2011: One 2010 story we never got time to explore more deeply was the crackdown on raw foods and specifically raw milk, a state repression campaign seemingly modeled on Joint Terrorism Task Force type setups. A number of Minnesota and Wisconsin dairy farmers are in the crosshairs of this absurd & dangerous government campaign to exterminate independent food distribution systems, which seems only likely to escalate after the so-called Food Safety bill passed. If you have tips about the government food crackdown, including searches and investigations of places like Traditional Foods Warehouse in Minneapolis, drop us a line.
Glass Bead Collective projection in Washington DC Solidarity with RVK9: Our friends at Glass Bead Collective used qik.com & livestream-enabled tech to live broadcast to the Internet video projections around various official buildings this weekend in Washington DC, including the Icelandic Embassy, as nine protesters who entered Parliament in the 2008 economic crisis are getting randomly prosecuted. Full info.
Police intelligence data workgroup report expected soon: TC Indymedia has been investigating police intelligence capabilities in Minnesota & attended many hearings of the "SF 2725 Workgroup", a government panel which examined current systems like the infamous Gang Pointer File [PDF]. However the panel did not look much at all at the joint federal structures infesting Minnesota, in particular the essentially unregulated Minneapolis Joint Terrorism Task Force. Officials have indicated the JTTF is the ultimate authority on data about purported "terrorist organizations" in Minnesota but have been evasive and unresponsive to further inquiries about this subject from Twin Cities Indymedia, and the extremely dubious subject will likely draw more interest in 2011.
The SF2725 Workgroup was directed to write a report for the Legislature by February 1, 2011, and it will include dissenting notes from citizen advocates on the panel [PDF]. The next likely consequence is that law enforcement will try to get the now-Republican controlled Legislature to approve more invasive & lower threshold "investigations" and permanent data collection, including data on "associations" like Facebook "friend" data arrays &etc.
For fairly detailed presentations of non-federalized structures like the Gang Pointer File and MnJAC, the Minnesota Joint Analysis Center [PPT] (fusion center) see the SF2725 task force website. More notes about MnJAC's operations in the 2008 RNC surfaced in a spooky FEMA/Homeland Security government report of national fusion center intelligence operations [PDF - p38-39].
More police Intel data across North America and beyond: More information has been obtained about police practices involving the 2010 Toronto G20 Conference : Ottawa Watched Internet Postings During G8, G20. In the UK, a government operative in the middle of the green direct action movement with the alias "Mark Stone" aka Mark Kennedy of the National Public Order Intelligence Unit seemingly quit cooperating with prosecutors. New commentary from former Ratcliffe trial defendant Danny Chivers.
At the 2010 Olympics, documents have been obtained targeting 'Joe B' for surveillance with the dubious inference they were a hacker trying to get fake credentials to the Olympics. See My V2010ISU files released: The RCMP and their love of the absolutely mundane details of my life and V2010ISU Files: Just how many Anarchists are in Vancouver???
An amusing situation in Richmond, Virginia went down wherein the local police released their entire set of written manuals including sensitive information on suppressing "civil disturbances" and prison rebellions (many logical justifications for prisoners to rebel are also included). The funniest part is probably the attempted suppression of data about Segways and their role in traffic laws (no chases!). The Richmond police filed suit to try to grab the files back, resulting in many Lols and even more publicity for anarchist projects around Richmond as the short-lived lawsuit's target Mo Karnage noted.
EXCO Classes due soon: If you want to set up a class or workshop with EXCO (now called Experimental Community Education of the Twin Cities) you'd better do it quick! Deadline is January 28, with a Reflection dinner that night at 6:30pm at PPL (1035 E. Franklin Ave.)
Mn Capitol News to post dirty details on Polymet: A new project, MnCapitolNews.com Capitol Conversations, will have a special feature by videographer Craig Stellmacher with deep research into the risky Polymet project in northern Minnesota. Tune in live at 6PM this Tuesday for the third episode of this independent Internet webcast. More info: Polymet Draft EIS.
Job Board: The Minnesota Student Association, the group which represents Minnesota's four-year student council type structures abruptly lost its main lobbyist/policy director just after the legislative session started. If you have experience in this area & feel like defending student interests against cuts & administrative agendas, consider applying for it. There's no apparent official job posting around but the lobbyist definitely quit!
For more jobs in the nonprofit sector see http://www.mncn.org/jobs - plenty have been posted since Jan. 1.
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