– Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity –

Posted By on November 12, 2015

Another episode of highly aggressive school police officers prompts student lawsuit against school. Are cops going wild on school campuses – and if so, why?

Participating in Class? School Cops Can Arrest You for That Too
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Peace and Prosperity

Participating in Class? School Cops Can Arrest You for That Too

undefinedSome people came to the defense of school cop Ben Fieldes who last week yanked a student in a Spring Valley High School math class in South Carolina out of her seat and attached desk, hurled her across the classroom floor, and arrested her. They said Fields’ actions were justified because the student was occupied with her cell phone instead of participating in the class. Now comes news from the College of DuPage in Illinois that school cops can do pretty much the same thing to a student who is participating in class.

Former DuPage student Jaclyn Pazera filed a lawsuit this week against the college. The lawsuit is in response to two school cops, caught on video, yanking her from her seat and attached desk, pinning her to the ground, and handcuffing her while she was attempting to participate in her philosophy class at the college last year.

As reported by Justin Kmitch in the Daily Herald, Pazera was charged with “obstructing a peace officer and resisting a peace officer,” both of which charges were dropped on Tuesday of last week — the day the prosecution of Pazera was scheduled for trial. Of course, the charges against Pazera were absurd from the beginning. They are among the standard charges piled on victims of police brutality in an attempt to defend the indefensible, shift the blame, and provide leverage to prevent the victims from taking the kind of legal action Pazera took this week.

Even the charges’ nomenclature reeks of dishonesty. “Peace officer!” Give me a break!

Apparently, the police had been enraged by Pazera, shortly before their attack on her, smoking in a place not designated as a smoking area. In this upside-down age of SWAT, maybe Pazera got off easy. In July, Sandra Bland ended up dead in a Texas jail cell three days after her arrest in a traffic stop for failure to use a turn signal when changing lanes. That traffic stop escalated into a horror show of physical abuse and incarceration right after Bland did not immediately comply with a cop’s request that she extinguish a cigarette she was smoking in her own car.


Copyright © 2015 by RonPaul Institute. Permission to reprint in whole or in part is gladly granted, provided full credit and a live link are given.
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Who Downed Metrojet Flight 9268?

undefinedFirst they said the downing of Russian Metrojet Flight 9268 was most likely due to Russia’s “notorious” regional airlines, which supposedly are rickety and unreliable. The Egyptian government denied that terrorism is even a possibility, with Egyptian despot Abdel Fatah al-Sisi proclaiming:

“When there is propaganda that it crashed because of Isis, this is one way to damage the stability and security of Egypt and the image of Egypt. Believe me, the situation in Sinai – especially in this limited area – is under our full control.”

However, it soon came out that the person in charge of Sharm el-Sheikh airport, where the Russia plane had landed before taking off again, had been “replaced” – oh, but notbecause of anything to do with the downing of the Russian passenger plane! As the Egyptian authorities put it:

“Adel Mahgoub, chairman of the state company that runs Egypt’s civilian airports, says airport chief Abdel-Wahab Ali has been ‘promoted’ to become his assistant. He said the move late Wednesday had nothing to do with media skepticism surrounding the airport’s security. Mahgoub said Ali is being replaced by Emad el-Balasi, a pilot.”

Laughable, albeit in a sinister way, and yet more evidence that something wasn’t quite right: after all, everyone knows the Egyptian government does not have the Sinai, over which the plane disintegrated in mid air, under its “full control.” ISIS, which claimed responsibility for the crash hours after it occurred, is all over that peninsula.

Still, the denials poured in, mostly from US government officials such as Director of National Intelligence James “Liar-liar-pants-on-fire” Clapper, who said ISIS involvement was “unlikely.” Then they told us it couldn’t have been ISIS because they supposedly don’t have surface-to-air missiles that can reach the height attained by the downed plane. Yet that wasn’t very convincing either, because a) How do they know what ISIS has in its arsenal?, and b) couldn’t ISIS or some other group have smuggled a bomb on board?

The better part of a week after the crash, we have this:

Days after authorities dismissed claims that ISIS brought down a Russian passenger jet, a U.S. intelligence analysis now suggests that the terror group or its affiliates planted a bomb on the plane.

British Foreign Minister Philip Hammond said his government believes there is a ‘significant possibility’ that an explosive device caused the crash. And a Middle East source briefed on intelligence matters also said it appears likely someone placed a bomb aboard the aircraft.

According to numerous news reports, intercepts of “internal communications” of the Islamic State/ISIS group provided evidence that it wasn’t an accident but a terrorist act. Those intercepts must have been available to US and UK government sources early on, yet these same officials said they had no “direct evidence,” as Clapper put it, of terrorist involvement. Why is that? And furthermore: why the general unwillingness of Western governments and media to jump to their usual conclusion when any air disaster occurs, and attribute it to terrorism?

The answer is simple: they didn’t want to arouse any sympathy for the Russians. Russia, as we all know, is The Enemy – considered even worse, in some circles, than the jihadists.  Indeed, there’s a whole section of opinion-makers devoted to the idea that  we must help Islamist crazies in Syria, including al-Qaeda’s affiliate, known as al-Nusra, precisely in order to stop the Evil Putin from extending Russian influence into the region.

In a broader sense, the reluctance to acknowledge that this was indeed a terrorist act is rooted in a refusal to acknowledge the commonality of interests that exists between Putin’s Russia and the West. The downing of the Metrojet is just the latest atrocity carried out by the head-choppers against the Russian people: this includes not only the Beslan school massacre, in which over 700 children were taken hostage by Chechen Islamists, but also the five apartment bombings that took place in 1999. The real extent of Western hostility to Russia, and the unwillingness to realize that Russia has been a major terrorist target, is underscored by the shameful propaganda pushed by the late Alexander Litvinenko, and endorsed by Sen. John McCain, which claims that the bombings were an “inside job” carried out by the Russian FSB – a version of “trutherism” that, if uttered in the US in relation to the 9/11 attacks, is routinely (and rightly) dismissed as sheer crankery. But where the Russians are concerned it’s not only allowable, it’s the default. A particularly egregious example is Russophobic hack Michael D. Weiss, who, days before the downing of the Russian passenger plane, solemnly informed us that Putin was “sending jihadists to join ISIS.” Boy oh boy, talk about ingratitude!

This downright creepy unwillingness to express any sympathy or sense of solidarity with the Russian people ought to clue us in to something we knew all along: that the whole “war on terrorism” gambit is as phony as a three-dollar bill. If US government officials were actually concerned about the threat of terrorist violence directed at innocent civilians, they would partner up with Russia in a joint effort to eradicate the threat: that this isn’t happening in Syria, or anywhere else, is all too evident. Not to mention our canoodling with “moderate” Chechen terrorists, openly encouraging them to carry on their war with Putin’s Russia. Our “war on terrorism” is simply a pretext for spying on the American people, and most of the rest of the world, and cementing the power of the State on the home front, not to mention fattening up an already grotesquely obese “defense” budget.

With the belated admission that the downing of the Russian passenger jet was an act of terrorism, we are beginning to hear that this a tremendous blow to Putin’s prestige at home – something no one would dare utter about Obama’s or Cameron’s “prestige” if the Metrojet had been an American or British passenger plane. They say it’s “blowback” due to Russia’s actions in Syria, with the clear implication that it’s deserved. And yet, according to US officials and the usual suspects, the Russiansaren’t hitting ISIS so much as they’re smiting the “moderate” Islamist head-choppers – the “Syrian rebels,” as they’re known — who are being funded, armed, and encouraged by the West.

If that’s true, then what kind of blowback are we talking about – and from which direction is it coming? Given this, isn’t it entirely possible that Metrojet Flight 9268 was downed by US-aided –and-supported “moderates,” who moderately decided to get back at Putin?

Reprinted with permission from Antiwar.com.

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Gitmo Reflects Disdain For The Constitution

undefinedDemocratic Sen. Dianne Feinstein has an op-ed in today’s New York Times entitled “Let’s Finally Close Guantanamo,” in which she points out what critics of the Guantanamo facility have been saying for years: It is a very effective tool that overseas terrorist organizations use to recruit new members. Feinstein calls for closing down the facility, transferring the remaining prisoners to the United States, and prosecuting them in US federal courts.

Among President Obama’s most notable campaign promises was to close the US national-security state’s prison camp and special tribunal system at Guantanamo Bay. As Obama enters into his last year in office, it is becoming increasingly likely that his promise is going to go unfulfilled. That’s because the Republican members of Congress, along with the US national-security establishment, are not likely to let it happen.

Why have the GOP, the Pentagon, and the CIA steadfastly insisted on the continued operation of the Gitmo facility ever since it was established after the 9/11 attacks?

The answer is: because they believe in it! They think it is absolutely fantastic that they have been able to construct a prisoner facility and special judicial system that is, in many respects, independent of the US Constitution and beyond the power of the federal courts to interfere with.

After all, let’s not forget why they established their prison camp in Cuba in the first place. From the very beginning, their objective was to have a Constitution-free zone, one where the national-security branch of the federal government — i.e., the military and the CIA — would have the omnipotent power to do whatever they wanted to suspected terrorists — without having to concern themselves with such things as due process of law, right to counsel, trial by jury, and rest of the guarantees in the Constitution and the Bill of Rights.

In fact, in the early days of Gitmo, when detainees began challenging their detention in federal courts, the Pentagon’s and CIA’s position was that the federal courts had no jurisdiction over their operation of Guantanamo. That’s because, they said, Guantanamo belongs to Cuba and, therefore, US Courts don’t have jurisdiction over Cuban affairs.

The Supreme Court ultimately rejected that argument but the ruling was just part of the longstanding charade designed to convince Americans that their constitutional system is operating normally, when in fact it is the Pentagon and the CIA that are ultimately in charge of the federal government. After all, if the Supreme Court were really in charge, do you think the justices would ever permit people to languish in jail for more than a decade without charges or trial? That’s what goes on in totalitarian countries, not societies governed by Constitutions, the rule of law, and an independent judiciary.

The most important point is one that should discomfort Americans: The reason they went to Cuba to establish their system is that they hate the system that our American ancestors brought into existence with the Constitution. That applies to both Republicans and the national-security establishment. For them, the rights and guarantees in the Fourth, Fifth, Sixth, and Eight Amendments are nothing more than idiotic technicalities that permit guilty people to go free. Conservatives and the national-security establishment have long held those rights and guarantees in disdain.

Don’t believe me? Just look at the type of “judicial” system they put together at Gitmo. Remember: When they were constructing their model system, there were no constraints on them. They were free to establish any system they wanted in Cuba.

Given that 100 percent latitude, did they come up with a system modeled after that of the United States — the one the Framers brought into existence? Not on your life! They did the exact opposite. They established a system that was a mirror image of the type of system that characterizes totalitarian regimes, including, ironically enough, the one on the other side of Cuba.

Consider their model system at Gitmo. They have military tribunals manned by military officials, instead of jury trials compose of regular people. That’s because they wanted to guarantee guilty verdicts. At first they tried to deny their prisoners the right to an attorney so that it would be easier to railroad them to the death penalty. They allow torture to be used against the accused and witnesses, to secure coerced confessions and false testimony. They permit hearsay evidence, which means that the accused is denied the right to confront and cross-examine witnesses against him. There is no right to a speedy trial, which is why prisoners continue to languish in jail without charges or trial, despite the passage of more than a decade.

Pick out any totalitarian regime in the world and you will find that type of “judicial” system — the type that Republicans, the Pentagon, and the CIA put together at Guantanamo.

In fact, just consider the Hitler regime, which most people consider is the gold standard when it comes to totalitarianism and tyranny. After the terrorist attack on the Reichstag, which was Germany’s 9/11, Hitler declared war on terrorism, just as Bush did after 9/11. That meant that Nazi Germany was now facing two official enemies – a Cold War against the Soviet Union (and godless communism) and terrorism (which, interestingly enough, are quite similar to the same two official enemies — Russia and terrorism—that Republicans, the Pentagon, and the CIA tell us that America is facing today).

When the Reichstag defendants were brought to trial, Germany’s federal courts acquitted some of them, which sent Hitler into a rage, driving him to organize a new system for trying terrorism cases. He established tribunals that were manned by civilian judges, albeit ones who were beholden to Hitler and who would ensure that terrorists and traitors would never be let off the hook again by the federal courts. It was one of those tribunals that tried, convicted, and executed the members of the White Rose.

That’s also why those tribunals were set up at Gitmo — to guarantee guilty verdicts in the event any of the defendants were ever to be brought to trial. Moreover, the judicial procedures that Hitler’s tribunals followed were similar to the procedures at Gitmo. What mattered to Hitler was the same thing that matters to the GOP, the Pentagon, and the CIA — to have a system that creates the façade of judicial legitimacy but also one that would guarantee a verdict of guilty.

Of course, what’s happened at Gitmo is not the only manifestation of the disdain that Republicans, the Pentagon, and the CIA — and, well, let’s face it, many Democrats too — have for our original system of constitutional government. Look at the types of governments they have brought into existence as a consequence of their invasions and occupations of Afghanistan and Iraq. They are governments characterized by massive military, intelligence, and police establishments, just like here in the United States. As part of their nation-building operations, they have never brought into existence the type of government that characterized the United States for more than 150 years — a limited-government constitutional republic, one with no welfare state, no central bank, no drug laws, and no national-security establishment, and one that honors and respects the rights and guarantees in the Fourth, Fifth, Sixth, and Eighth, Second, and First Amendments, and the rest of the Bill of Rights.

When the most powerful part of the federal government holds the Constitution, the Bill of Rights, and the founding principles of this nation in disdain, that’s a good sign that the American people have much more to be concerned about than just the closing of the Pentagon’s and CIA’s facility at Guantanamo.

Reprinted with permission from the Future of Freedom Foundation.


 

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