by BAR executive editor Glen Ford
The FBI has apparently chosen a new heading under which to lump Black Americans targeted for political persecution: “Black Identity Extremists.” There’s a simple explanation for the new categorization. The FBI is a bureaucracy whose day-to-day work involves drawing up lists of people and organizations to be surveilled, disrupted and prosecuted. The dramatic increase in Black “movement” activity since the 2014 police killing of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri, has presented the FBI with a much larger field of targets, including youthful elements loosely grouped under the Black Lives Matter banner. When bureaucracies compile new lists, they typically file them under new names….
By Max Brookman-Byrne, Lecturer in Law, University of Lincoln. Reposted with permission.
Sally Jones, reportedly killed in US drone strike in June 2017
It was today revealed by various newspapers (for instance, the Guardian, BBC and Mail) that Sally Jones, the so-called ‘White Widow’, has likely been killed by a targeted drone strike. Jones was described as being a member of ISIS and was apparently killed, along with her 12-year-old son, in June 2017 near the Iraq-Syria border.
In a menacing speech to the Spanish Congress on Wednesday, Popular Party (PP) Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy stated that, in response to Catalan regional Premier Carles Puigdemont’s speech affirming the October 1 independence referendum, he was preparing to invoke Article 155 of the Spanish Constitution. This provision allows Madrid to suspend the authority of the Catalan regional government and seize control of the region’s finances and administration.
Is it news or propaganda? And what about the First Amendment?
Somehow everything keeps coming back around to Russia. In one of its recent initiatives, the Justice Department (DOJ) appears to be attacking the First Amendment as part of the apparent bipartisan program to make Vladimir Putin the fall guy for everything that goes wrong in Washington. In the past month, the DOJ has revealed that the FBI is investigating Russian owned news outlets Sputnik News and RT International and has sent letters to the latter demanding that one of its business affiliates register as a foreign agent by October 17th. The apparent line of inquiry that the Bureau is pursuing is that both are agencies of the Russian government and that both have been spreading disinformation that is intended to discredit the United States government and its institutions. This alleged action would make them, in the DOJ view, a propaganda arm of a foreign government rather than a news service. It also makes them subject to Department of the Treasury oversight under the Foreign Agents Registration Act of 1938.