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FBI Stops Crime Fighting – Now Spying On US Citizens

FBI Stops Crime Fighting – Now Spying On US Citizens

Lompoc Record
March 11, 2008

A team of research analysts at Syracuse University has been tracking the FBI’s activity in domestic crime investigations. The results are revealing.

For example, in 2007, the FBI made 2,300 referrals of cases to be prosecuted to the U.S. Justice Department. In 1993, the FBI made 20,900 such referrals.

Two decades ago, FBI investigations contributed 36 percent of the total cases prosecuted by the Justice Department. Last year, the FBI referrals were down to 16 percent.

So, if FBI agents aren’t investigating crime in the United States, what are they doing? Ferreting out terrorists, apparently, and invading your privacy in the process.

Internal audits indicate the FBI has continued, and even expanded, its pursuit of information on American citizens – made possible by the Patriot Act – although it was ordered by a federal judge last year to cease and desist.

The judge’s ruling came after testimony that the FBI had issued more than 140,000 “national security letters” in the period from the beginning of 2003 through 2005. In his ruling, the federal judge called such snooping the “legislative equivalent of breaking and entering.”

So, in the opinion of at least one judge, instead of solving crime and helping to put criminals behind bars, the FBI has instead focused its energies on violating the privacy rights of U.S. citizens.

Those national security letters allow the FBI to comb through phone, Internet and bank records in an effort to thwart terrorism. It seems highly unlikely that there are many terrorists, or U.S. citizens with connections to terrorist groups, among the hundreds of thousands of citizens whose lives have now been pried into by the FBI.

FBI officials admitted last week that the federal judge’s order to stop snooping, or at least slow the pace, had basically been ignored. The bureau apparently continues to eavesdrop.

The mental image is inescapable – the United States as become a nation of frightened people, cowering in a corner, giving up all semblance of privacy and civil freedoms in an effort to keep from being terrorized.

At least that’s the image the Bush administration fosters in its relentless, unending search for the evildoers of the world.

NSA Rebuilds Total Information Awareness
http://www.news.com/8301-13578_3-9890761-38.html

FBI Spying Abuses Reported
http://www.nytimes.com/2008/03/13/washington/13fbi.html

 


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Mynima

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