LOCAL NEWS: Towery case has potential of shedding light on fusion centers
- Written by Abe DeJamminen and Madeleine Lee
On Monday the New York Times took an interest in a local trial now in the discovery phase at Federal District Court in Tacoma. -- Antiwar activists in Olympia are suing John J. Towery, a civilian employee of the Army who spied and reported on antiwar activists, Thomas R. Rudd, his former supervisor at the Joint Base Lewis-McChord, and police officials from Tacoma and Olympia. -- On Monday, another defendant was added: Chris Adamson of the Pierce County Sheriff's Dept., director of what has become the Washington State Fusion Center that is supposed to be involved in counterterrorism, not spying on activists. -- "Mr. Adamson helped coordinate Mr. Towery’s spying efforts and listed at least four protesters in a 'national domestic terrorist database with pictures, and identifying personal information along with false claims alleging a propensity for violence,'" Colin Moynihan reported. -- On Wednesday, the Olympian reported on this and other developments in the case. -- Better than either of these articles in explaining the suit was an article on the Firedoglake website. -- Kevin Gostzola said that "Larry Hildes, one of the lawyers involved in arguing the case, Panagacos v. Towery, told Firedoglake in December the [Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals] ruling was the 'first time any appellate court' had 'ever said that yes you can sue the military for damages for spying on civilian activists.'" -- On Wednesday a blogger at the website Your Inquirer Profoundly made the connection between the trial proceeding in Tacoma and the larger revelations of Edward Snowden: "When a government can extract your thoughts and monitor your behavior through surveillance, consolidate that information through databasing to establish a data profile that defines who you are in the eyes of national security, and then disseminate information about you throughout an integrated network of authorities without you knowing, it’s only a matter of time before you think, say, or post the wrong thing warranting closer scrutiny." -- COMMENT: By promising to shed some light upon the secretive, shadowy operations of fusion centers, the Olympia PMR lawsuit has the potential to break a pattern of silence relating to fusion centers, whose existence has been systematically under-reported by corporate-owned media -- perhaps because the corporations themselves are part of the fusion center networks. -- Clearly, a congressional investigation similar to the Church Committee of the 1970s is needed, as Reps. Barbara Lee, D-Calif., Rush Holt, D-N.J., and others have called for. -- Secret law, assassination squads, warrantless wiretapping, misleading of Congress, and a general lack of oversight have subverted basic constitutional principles....
CALENDAR: Accounts of travel in Bangladesh, Hiroshima, & Palestine -- in Tacoma on Jun. 21 @ 7pm
- Written by Abe DeJamminen
CALENDAR: Cathy Tashiro to discuss new book on mixed-race Americans-- Tues., Jun. 11 & Fri., Jun. 14
- Written by Hank Berger
Two opportunities are upcoming to hear Cathy Tashiro discuss her new book, Standing on Both Feet: Voices of Older Mixed-Race Americans (Paradigm, 2013). -- The first is a Tuesday morning TV appearance on the KING 5 morning talk show "New Day." -- The second is an Elliott Bay Book Co. talk on Fri. evening, Jun. 14. -- Cathy Tashiro has said of herself: "Like the people in this book, I am an older mixed race American. -- I was born in Cincinnati in 1946 to a Japanese American father and white mother. -- I've been involved with community health and health care for most of my professional life. -- Prior to obtaining my Ph.D. in Sociology at the University of California, San Francisco, I worked in women's health and in many community-based settings with diverse populations as a nurse, nurse practitioner, and consultant. -- I also helped develop the first staff diversity program at the University of California, Berkeley." ...