On The Intercept, Jeremy Scahill and Ryan Devereaux look at the secret process that "requires neither 'concrete facts' nor 'irrefutable evidence' to designate an American or foreigner as a terrorist." Reportedly, the system allows for "individuals to be designated as representatives of terror organizations" regardless of whether they have any actual connection to them.
“If reasonable suspicion is the only standard you need to label somebody, then it’s a slippery slope we’re sliding down here, because then you can label anybody anything,” says David Gomez, a former senior FBI special agent with experience running high-profile terrorism investigations. “Because you appear on a telephone list of somebody doesn’t make you a terrorist. That’s the kind of information that gets put in there.”
The fallout is personal too. There are severe consequences for people unfairly labeled a terrorist by the U.S. government, which shares its watchlist data with local law enforcement, foreign governments, and “private entities.” Once the U.S. government secretly labels you a terrorist or terrorist suspect, other institutions tend to treat you as one. It can become difficult to get a job (or simply to stay out of jail). It can become burdensome—or impossible—to travel. And routine encounters with law enforcement can turn into ordeals.
In 2012 Tim Healy, the former director of the FBI’s Terrorist Screening Center, described to CBS News how watchlists are used by police officers. “So if you are speeding, you get pulled over, they’ll query that name,” he said. “And if they are encountering a known or suspected terrorist, it will pop up and say call the Terrorist Screening Center…. So now the officer on the street knows he may be dealing with a known or suspected terrorist.” Of course, the problem is that the “known or suspected terrorist” might just be an ordinary citizen who should not be treated as a menace to public safety.
|Is Barack Obama President Yet?|
|"[Sandy] fits the general pattern [...] that, increasingly, can be attributed to climate change."|
|Help Iranians Communicate|
|#Apple #iPhone Antitrust Case Advanced|
|Chinese Shocked That U.S. Officials Visiting in China Carry Their Own Bags, Order Their Own Coffee|
|“Rejuvenation is Finally an Industry.”|
|Everything We've Learnt About the Surveillance State|
|How to Avoid Jury Duty|
|Go the Fuck to Sleep: A Children's Bedtime Book|
|“Put words between buns.”|
|“He portrays these abandoned malls as apocalyptic ruins.”|
|Japanese Robot Serves Ice Cream From Inside a Vending Machine|
|Cure for Gayness? There's an App for That|
|The BROpener: Any Surface Becomes a Bottle Opener|
|“Tesla Model 3: It’s a giant iPhone.”|
|Star Wars: The Changes -- Part One|
|Bizarre Record Covers|