Cardin to pursue data shared from state police spy operation
By Paul West | email@example.com
April 22, 2009
U.S. intelligence and law enforcement agencies have not fully responded to requests about data shared from a Maryland State Police spying operation into anti-death penalty and anti-war activists, Sen. Benjamin L. Cardin said Tuesday.
Cardin said he remains committed to seeking more information amid concerns that the
Zoe Baird, who co-chaired a Markle Foundation task force on national security information policy, said, "Unfortunately, this nation still cannot connect the dots." More than seven years after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, authorities at different levels of government are still not sharing information adequately, she said.
Caroline Fredrickson of the American Civil Liberties Union, which exposed the Maryland spying operation, told Cardin and Arizona Republican Jon Kyl, the only senators at the hearing, that state police had "uploaded the activists' personal information into a federal drug enforcement and terrorism database." She said that, in recent years, her group had found other examples of alleged illegal surveillance by law enforcement in the name of fighting terrorism that targeted peace activists in
A report last year by former Maryland Attorney General Stephen H. Sachs found that the state police had transmitted information on activists to a federal database of suspected terrorists or drug traffickers. The state police superintendent at the time has since defended his department's infiltration of protest groups as necessary to prevent potentially violent demonstrations against the executions of death row inmates.
State police have since adopted new rules on when surveillance operations can take place, and the Maryland General Assembly put those policies into law this year.
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Last update - 01:36 22/04/2009
Let Vanunu go
By Yossi Melman
Like a modern-day Cain, Mordechai Vanunu walks the streets of
His financial situation as well as his physical and mental health is deteriorating. But
Thus Vanunu, who was released from prison in 2004, entered his sixth year as a "Prisoner of
The authorities consider him a traitor, even though he did not betray secrets to enemy countries, a terrorist organization or foreign security organizations. He exposed
Indeed, he violated the law and he deserved his punishment. But he already served his 18 years in jail, partially under cruel solitary confinement. Nonetheless, the state refuses to allow him to leave the country and start life anew. He may still have time to start a family. After all, it is an accepted legal norm that a person not be punished twice for the same crime.
It used to be that the state's vengeful treatment of Vanunu was attributed to the chief of state security, Yehiel Horev. I thought so, too. I admit I was wrong. Horev has been gone for nearly two years. And still, his replacement Amir Kain holds the same view: None of the restrictions imposed on Vanunu should be lifted, and he must not be allowed to leave
The justifications are weak and exaggerated. The claim is that Vanunu holds more secret information about
Every person, regardless of his views, with a conscience, ethics and a sense of justice must tell the state, enough. No more. After 23 years of suffering, let Mordechai Vanunu become a free man.
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"The master class has always declared the wars; the subject class has always fought the battles. The master class has had all to gain and nothing to lose, while the subject class has had nothing to gain and everything to lose--especially their lives." Eugene Victor Debs