The FBI hatched a “plot to identify and assassinate Occupy leaders”? It’d seem so, according to the Partnership for Civil Justice Fund and civil liberties activists.
Information obtained by the Partnership for Civil Justice Fund via a Freedom of Information Act request reveal that the FBI: a) “collaborated with other federal agencies, including the Department of Homeland Security and Naval Investigative Criminal Services, to keep tabs on” Occupy Wall Street; b) considered OWS “a potential criminal and domestic terrorism threat”; and c) potentially had “a plot to identify and assassinate Occupy leaders with a sniper rifle”.
Mother Jones reports:
The release shed some new light on how the FBI collaborated with other federal agencies, including the Department of Homeland Security and Naval Investigative Criminal Services, to keep tabs on the movement, which it considered a potential criminal and domestic terrorism threat. Yet the documents, obtained under the Freedom of Information Act, are also heavily redacted—including a curious report about a plot to identify and assassinate Occupy leaders with a sniper rifle—and leave much to the imagination.
Last October, around the one year anniversary of the 60 000-follower Occupy Canada movement, I blogged about a magnificent piece of reporting by Rolling Stone‘s Sabrina Rubin Erdely, which detailed how the United States government “turned five stoner misfits into the world’s most hapless terrorist cell.” Five Occupy Cleveland activists “who had grown disenchanted with the Occupy movement, which they considered too conservative” decided to “make a radical statement of their own – to send a message to corporate America, its corrupt government and that invisible grid underlying it all, the System.”
So, the “Cleveland Five” hatched a plan to blow up a bridge.
The trouble is: “Nothing was destined to blow up that night, as it turns out, because the entire plot was actually an elaborate federal sting operation. The case against the Cleveland Five, in fact, exposes not just a deeply misguided element of the Occupy movement, but also a shadowy side of the federal government.”
Canadian activists must take these report very seriously, especially in this dictatorial age of the Harper Conservative government. In the case of the Cleveland Five, the U.S. government “determined that the best way to capture terrorists is simply to invent them in the first place.” And manufacture “threatening events.” A recent study by Queens University’s Jeffrey Monaghan and Kevin Walby, published in the journal Policing and Society confirmed that the Harper Government is busy inventing terror identities to nail activists, suppress dissent and create a society that is cowed, uncritical, fearful and divided.