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Donald Trump Thinks He Heard Vladimir Putin Call Barack Obama “the N-Word.” He Didn’t.

The Intercept - Engl. - Hace 4 horas 28 mins

Donald Trump’s mind wanders when he speaks. His campaign speeches are marked by frequent digressions into subjects as tangential to his qualifications for running the country as the ineffectiveness of hairspray in the post-aerosol era.

So it was perhaps no surprise that Trump’s most bizarre statement on Wednesday — that he hopes Russian spies hacked into the private email server Hillary Clinton used while Secretary of State, and might make public all of the personal correspondence her staff delated as unrelated to her work — was itself a digression.

Video of the moment shows that Trump came up with that idea while free associating on the theory that the hacking of the Democratic National Committee might have been ordered by Russian President Vladimir Putin to sabotage Clinton. “If it is Russia,” Trump said, “it’s really bad for a different reason: because it shows how little respect they have for our country.”

Trump: "Russia, if you're listening, I hope you're able to find the 30,000 [Clinton] emails that are missing." https://t.co/4D6idLU47t

— ABC News (@ABC) July 27, 2016

Much of the news conference, like much of the campaign that has proceeded it, was devoted to similar remarks from Trump about what he sees as the crucial need for other countries to respect the United States. Since he first flirted with a run for the presidency in 1987, and took out a full-page ad in the New York Times claiming that “the world is laughing at America’s politicians,” Trump has seemed obsessed with the theme.

Even now that he has obtained the Republican nomination for the presidency, Trump’s Twitter feed and public statements are still filled with complaints about the perceived disrespect shown to him by rivals and journalists.

I was at @FoxNews and met Juan Williams in passing. He asked if he could have pictures taken with me. I said fine. He then trashes on air!

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 25, 2016

Throughout his news conference on Wednesday, Trump returned again and again to the idea that America’s strained relations with Russia are based solely on the Russian president’s supposed lack of respect for America’s leaders — and not, say, differences over Russia’s support for separatist rebels in Ukraine or its intervention against U.S.-backed rebels in Syria. Trump even claimed at one stage that he had heard Putin use a racial slur to describe President Barack Obama.

“Right now, we don’t have a good relationship,” Trump said of the U.S. and Russia. “Putin has said things over the last year that are really bad things, okay? He mentioned the N-word one time. I was shocked to hear him mention the N-word. You know what the N-word is, right? He mentioned it. I was shocked.”

Although there is no chance that this ever happened — since there are no published reports of such an explosive public statement and Trump stressed again that he has never met Putin — the Republican presidential nominee was in no doubt as to who was to blame for such an (entirely imaginary) affront: Obama himself.

“He has a total lack of respect for President Obama,” Trump said of Putin. “Number one, he doesn’t like him. And number two, he doesn’t respect him. I think he’s going to respect your president if I’m elected. And I hope he likes me.”

While it is impossible to say what, exactly, led Trump to believe that he had heard Putin say something that he did not say, this fantasy does appear to be a common one in the far-right racist precincts of the internet where the candidate gets a lot of his inspiration.

I'll bet you a dollar to a donut that Putin uses the "N" word when talking about Obama !

— Craig – infidel (@kraig4u) July 19, 2013

@FreeRepublicTXT "I bet that Putin and his advisors use the N word constantly when discussing how to deal with Obama."

— Jasper Mallis (@JasperMallis) April 1, 2014

Intelligence reports suggests Putin refers to Obama as that (n word) in the White House as do many Americans

— Raymond Holmes (@rgholmes) July 24, 2014

Near the end of the news conference, Trump was asked by Mareike Aden, a journalist from Germany working for South Florida’s NPR’s station WLRN, if he would consider recognizing the Crimean peninsula, annexed by Russia in 2014, as Russian territory, and would consider lifting sanctions related to that act.

I asked @realDonaldTrump:"Would you as president want to recognize #Crimea as Russian, lift sanctions?" – "Yes we would be looking at that"

— MareikeAden (@MareikeAden) July 27, 2016

He replied, “We’ll be looking at that, yeah.”

Like the Fox News pundits who furnish Trump with much of his information about the world, the candidate also made clear on Wednesday that he holds the Russian leader in higher esteem than President Obama.

After boasting, incorrectly, that Putin “said I’m a genius,” and dismissing suggestions that his unreleased tax returns might show investments from Russia, Trump defended his praise for the Russian president as uncontroversial. “I said that Putin has much better leadership qualities than Obama, but who doesn’t know that?” Trump asked.

"I said that Putin has much better leadership qualities than Obama," @realDonaldTrump https://t.co/cnm2tq8dPs pic.twitter.com/Dz8w87da8L

— CBS News (@CBSNews) July 27, 2016

In fact, although talking points about how Putin’s demonstrations of strength make Obama look weak are repeated endlessly in the right-wing media, polls show that most Americans approve of Obama’s presidency and overwhelmingly dislike Putin.

Obama’s current approval rating in the Gallup poll sits at 51 percent — or, almost exactly where it was when he won reelection in 2012 — while 45 percent disapprove of his performance as president. Putin, by contrast, is reviled. The most recent Gallup survey of U.S. views of Putin, in 2014, showed him rated unfavorably by 63 percent of Americans, with just a 19 percent approval rating. Last year, 75 percent of Americans told Pew pollsters they had no confidence in Putin “to do the right thing in world affairs.”

While Trump takes praise from Putin as an unalloyed compliment, he seems to have paid little attention to another alternative, that Russia’s president might prefer to have America led by an ill-informed buffoon who would sow dissension at home and undermine alliances abroad.

“Trump’s antics have made the U.S. the laughing stock of the world,” the former Moscow correspondent Miriam Elder wrote in Buzzfeed. “Putin supports Donald Trump because of the threat that Trump poses to the U.S.”

And indeed, Trump’s candidacy might already be doing Putin some good. As the Russian state news outlet Sputnik reported last month, a new poll of global attitudes from Pew showed that “Republican nominee Donald Trump appears to be not only one of the lowest-rated politicians among Americans since public opinion polling began in the 1960s, but he also seems to be affecting the country’s reputation abroad.”

“People polled around the world favor Russian President Vladimir Putin over a leading U.S. presidential candidate for the first time,” the news agency noted with glee.

Although the poll showed that support for Putin remains very low in most countries, Trump is seen even more negatively in much of the world, with a single-digit approval rating in Germany, Japan, France, and Spain.

While Obama is far more popular globally than either man — with majority support in 15 of the 16 countries polled, including the United States — the pollsters also found something else of interest in the data: “people who have confidence in Putin are more likely to express confidence in Trump.” For instance, though only 21 percent of Italians overall expressed confidence in Trump to make the right decision in world affairs, “among those in Italy who have confidence in Putin to handle world affairs, 44 percent express confidence in Donald Trump.”

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The post Donald Trump Thinks He Heard Vladimir Putin Call Barack Obama “the N-Word.” He Didn’t. appeared first on The Intercept.

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Bernie Sanders Delegates Complain of “Disrespect” on Democratic Convention Floor

The Intercept - Engl. - Hace 7 horas 22 mins

On Monday, Sen. Bernie Sanders reiterated his endorsement of Hillary Clinton, the Democratic Party nominee. On Tuesday, it was made official during the roll call vote, when Sanders himself stood among his Vermont delegation and moved that Clinton be nominated by acclamation.

But on Wednesday, some delegates in the Sanders camp complained that Democratic Party officials who manage the convention had treated them as something less than their Clinton-pledged counterparts.

Michael Wilson, a Sanders-pledged delegate from California, told me that floor officials attempted to confiscate his delegation’s anti-TPP signs, and that he returned from a walkout by Sanders supporters on Tuesday evening to find that his seat had been taken by a nondelegate who refused to give it up.

“It’s a disrespect not to us, but to the people who voted for us, and that we’re representing. They want to have their voices heard. But apparently there are certain subjects that are not palatable to the party authorities.”

“I have no knowledge of those specific situations,” Lee Whack, the press secretary for the Democratic National Convention, told me on Wednesday evening, in response to complaints of disrespect from Sanders delegates. He declined to comment further. Repeated phone calls and emails to the Clinton and Sanders campaigns were not returned.

The Sanders campaign brought many newcomers into the political process and onto the convention floor. Some amount of controlling signs and chants is a normal part of the convention process, as the party attempts to unify behind one candidate and pivot to the general election.

But the complaints of disrespect were not limited to starry-eyed political rookies. Pete Gertonson is an Idaho superdelegate who sits on the Democratic National Committee. He said that Monday night’s program was “soured” by the invocation by Rev. Cynthia Hale, which he said was too focused on Clinton.

“Her speech was wonderful,” until she mentioned Clinton, Gertonson said. “I was sitting there in awe. To politicize an invocation, it’s like inserting Hillary Clinton into the Pledge of Allegiance. We should have spent Monday night focusing on unity, going through our history from F.D.R. to John F. Kennedy and further focused on the idea of unity, and of coming together. I feel my values had been disrespected by whoever choreographed Monday night. I’ve been with the DNC for quite some time. I know they’re smarter than that. Monday night should have been about unity, Tuesday night is the roll call vote, Wednesday is about the nominee, and Thursday, here she comes.”

He described the walkout, which he did not participate in, as “grief time … you hope for something all your life, and then it’s gone.” Idaho delegates, he said, had no problems being reseated.

Some Sanders delegates said that the convention had given them a warm welcome. Jenise Porter and Eve Shapiro, two Sanders delegates from Arizona, complimented their state party chair on her neutrality. “She’s been very respectful,” Porter said, adding that she knew of no problems with seating or signs among her delegation.

Ali Kurnaz, a Sanders-pledged delegate from Orlando, Florida, echoed some of Gertonson’s views on Monday’s program. “Speaker after speaker was shoving Hillary Clinton down our throats. We had not even voted and it seemed that she was being anointed the Democratic nominee for president. And in between each of these speakers, they would insert a video of Donald Trump to instill fear.”

Kurnaz said that Florida’s Clinton-pledged delegates had taken it upon themselves to assign seats, and prevented him from sitting near other Sanders delegates. “We weren’t able to whisper or talk or coordinate possible actions that we wanted to take on the floor,” he said.

“I held up a Palestinian flag on the floor. The minute I did, Clinton delegates from Florida started pushing and shoving me and pulling it out of my hands. They told me that I don’t belong there. They told me that I don’t belong there. They questioned whether I was even from Florida, whether I was a delegate. One of them pointed at me and said, ‘he is a Palestinian.’ As if that were some sort of slur. I’m a party leader, an elected official.” Kurnaz handles communications for Florida Young Democrats and has managed a campaign for Florida’s House of Representatives.

Erika Onsrud, an at-large Minnesota delegate, called Monday’s program “divisive and offensive. Every single speaker referred to Hillary as the nominee.” She had heard stories of Sanders-pledged delegates losing their seats but had not witnessed it herself. “I’m not ready to support Hillary. Not today,” she said. “Come November, I will vote my conscience.”

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Drug Industry Will Make Hospitals Obsolete, Biotech CEO Says on DNC Panel

The Intercept - Engl. - Mié, 27/07/2016 - 23:55

The CEO of the world’s largest biotechnology trade group said at a panel discussion at the Democratic National Convention on Wednesday that Americans need to take more drugs “instead of going to the hospital.”

Jim Greenwood is the head of the Biotechnology Industry Organization, which represents companies involved with such things as genetically engineered crops and prescription drugs.

Speaking at an event put on by the Information Technology and Innovation Foundation —  a think tank funded by Google, IBM, Cisco, eBay, and other corporate underwriters — Greenwood argued that high prescription-drug prices are a boon to the economy and public health.

The U.S. already has the highest prices for drugs in the industrialized world, but Greenwood argued that prescription drugs, regardless of their price, lower overall health care costs.

“I hear that drugs are 15 percent of all health care spending,” Greenwood said. “I’d like it to be 100 percent. That would mean you could take a drug when you’re sick instead of going to the hospital.”

Greenwood is a former member of the House. The roundtable discussion also featured Sen. Chris Coons and Reps. Derek Kilmer, Suzanne DelBene, and Scott Peters.

None of them — or anyone else on the panel, which included executives from Facebook and Amazon — challenged the idea that prescription drugs could be used as a treatment for everything that currently requires hospitalization – such as gunshot wounds or being struck by a car.

Later in the discussion, Greenwood offered a “note of caution” to Congress. “When you have a system that’s working really well, be careful of throwing a wrench into one part of it.” The “wrench,” in this case, would be making drug prices cheaper—and, presumably, continuing to fund hospitals.

The Democratic Party’s official platform, adopted on Monday, calls for capping out-of-pocket costs on prescription drugs, allowing importation of prescription drugs from lower-cost countries like Canada, and letting Medicare negotiate lower prices with drug companies, which it is currently prohibited from doing.

“It is unacceptable that the United States pays, by far, the highest prices in the world for prescription drugs,” the platform reads. “A lifesaving drug is no good if it is unaffordable to the very people who need it most.”

Greenwood said that high prices were the only way to acquire the funds for research and development that drives innovations in medications that can fight illness. But as the platform says, “many drug companies are spending more on advertising than research,” and the profit margins for the drug industry are higher than other industries.

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The post Drug Industry Will Make Hospitals Obsolete, Biotech CEO Says on DNC Panel appeared first on The Intercept.

This Isn’t the First Time Donald Trump Has Asked Hackers for Help Taking Down His Enemies

The Intercept - Engl. - Mié, 27/07/2016 - 19:58

Donald Trump on Wednesday urged Russia to hack Hillary Clinton’s emails, setting off howls of outrage from across the political spectrum for actually soliciting foreign espionage on his opponent. “Russia, if you’re listening, I hope you’re able to find the 30,000 emails that are missing,” Trump said.

VIDEO: Trump: "Russia, if you're listening, I hope you're able to find the 30,000 emails that are missing…" https://t.co/NEGclzLXtP

— Bradd Jaffy (@BraddJaffy) July 27, 2016

But it’s not the first time he has endorsed hacking to uncover information that he wants. Trump previously asked for hackers’ help in his obsessive quest to prove that President Barack Obama was not born in the U.S.:

Attention all hackers: You are hacking everything else so please hack Obama's college records (destroyed?) and check "place of birth"

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) September 6, 2014

ObamaCare is a disaster and Snowden is a spy who should be executed-but if it and he could reveal Obama's records,I might become a major fan

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 30, 2013

For the record, Obama released his birth certificate in 2011.

Meanwhile, Trump slammed Sony for getting hacked in 2014. “If North Korea has that sort of power that they can do things on the internet that we have no idea what’s happening, that is not a good thing,” Trump told Fox News.

As for the emails that Trump described as “missing,” there are 31,830 emails written or received by Clinton during her tenure as Secretary of State that her staff determined to be “private, personal records” — not related to her work — and destroyed.

FBI Director James Comey said this month that investigators had “discovered several thousand work-related e-mails” sent or received by Clinton using her personal server that her staff had not turned over to the State Department.” While that encouraged Clinton’s critics to suggest she must be hiding something, Comey added that “we found no evidence that any of the additional work-related emails were intentionally deleted in an effort to conceal them.”

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In Secret Battle, Surveillance Court Reined in FBI Use of Information Obtained from Phone Calls

The Intercept - Engl. - Mié, 27/07/2016 - 19:37

Beginning over a decade ago, the country’s surveillance court intervened to limit the FBI’s ability to act on some sensitive information that it collected while monitoring phone calls.

The wrangling between the FBI and the secret court are contained in previously undisclosed documents obtained by the Electronic Privacy Information Center, or EPIC, in an ongoing Freedom of Information Act lawsuit and were shared with The Intercept.

The documents reveal that the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISA) told the FBI several times between 2005 and 2007 that using some incidental information it collected while monitoring communications in an investigation — specifically, numbers people punch into their phones after they’ve placed a call — would require an explicit authorization from the court, even in an emergency.

“The newly obtained summaries are significant because they show the power that the [Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court] has to limit expansive FBI surveillance practices,” Alan Butler, an attorney for EPIC, wrote in an email to The Intercept.

Additionally, The Intercept independently obtained sections of the FBI’s 2011 Domestic Investigations and Operations Guide describing how the FBI currently deals with information it obtains after getting a court order for what’s called a “pen register,” or “trap and trace” on a target — a capability built into the phone lines which records incoming and outgoing phone numbers for a particular phone. The 2011 guide is currently public, but heavily redacted.

The Operations Guide, in addition to shedding light on how the FBI uses pen registers, reveals that the surveillance court’s pushback more than a decade ago has become internal FBI policy.

During an investigation, the FBI is often interested in who a target is talking to — what calls they make and receive, and where those calls physically originate from.

By simply telling a judge the information is “relevant,” the FBI can demand that a phone company, or email or other online provider, immediately hand over any and all “telephone numbers, email addresses, and other dialing, routing, addressing, or signaling information.” That information can sometimes include locational data. They don’t need to notify the target or demonstrate probable cause that he or she committed a crime to get it.

But the FBI’s monitoring can end up getting more information than just phone numbers, though pen-register and trap-and-trace orders are not intended to get any “content” that would provide insight into the substance or subject of a communication.

For example, the numbers people punch into the phone after making a call can reveal financial or personal information — like a credit card number, a social security number, a PIN, a prescription number, or any other type of response via automated telephone prompts. The “term of art” for this information is “post-cut through dialed digits.”

The FBI in the 2011 Domestic Investigations and Operations Guide has described the digits dialed after someone makes a call as “content.”

Following the release of documents by NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden, many have described the secretive court as a “rubber stamp” because it rarely rejects a surveillance request. But there’s nuance in what the judges have challenged or modified in response to requests over the years.

Between July and December in 2005, the surveillance court approved pen registers and trap-and-trace devices to target “at least 138” people.

However, one judge started asking the FBI more probing questions about what exactly it did with post-cut through dialing digits it “incidentally” obtained with those orders — launching what Butler describes as an “open secret” fight between the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court and FBI over the information. The judge’s request for a “memorandum of law” appears in the July 2006 Department of Justice report to Congress on its use of FISA pen registers, obtained by EPIC. Some of that pushback was documented by Wired in 2008.

The government in May 2006 told the court that it had the authority to collect that sensitive information, and would “in some cases … specifically seek authority for secondary orders requiring a service provider to provide all dialing, routing, addressing or signaling information transmitted by a target telephone, which, in light of technological constraints, may include content and non-content digits alike,” the report continues. (According to the Domestic Investigations and Operations Guide, the FBI agent requesting the pen register has to specifically ask for any additional dialing information following the first nine or 10 digits — it isn’t automatic.)

The government also insisted it wouldn’t actually use that information in an investigation — unless there’s an emergency, that is, to prevent death, serious physical injury or “harm to national security,” though it’s never made explicit what exactly that means.

Between January and June in 2006, the surveillance court modified some of the FBI’s applications to stop it from using that information without additional permission, no matter the urgency.

The court “had made modifications to the government’s proposed pen register orders,” reads the biannual report to Congress obtained by EPIC. “Although the [FISA Court] has authorized the government to record and decode all post-cut-through digits dialed by the targeted telephone, it has struck the language specifically authorizing the government to make affirmative investigative use of possible content” unless permission is specifically granted by the court.

The surveillance court wasn’t the only judicial body rejecting the FBI’s requests to hold onto the additional dialing information. In July 2006, a magistrate judge in Texas denied an application for a pen register because filtering technology would not eliminate the additional content information. That led then-chief judge of the surveillance court, Colleen Kollar-Kotelly, to ask the government to respond to the Texas court, and explain how it might impact decisions in foreign intelligence investigations.

The government said the court should basically ignore the decision — and take note of new revisions to the USA Patriot Act, which said the government could obtain “noncontent” dialing information. (Because there isn’t technology that can reliably separate out content from noncontent when it comes to this type of dialing information, the law basically allows for all of it, the government argued.)

In 2006, the court had not yet written a formal decision on whether or not the government could keep getting this information — let alone use it in an investigation.

But “most” of the judges continued to strike the “emergency” language from the FBI’s requests, despite the government continuing to insist that “the proposed exception is reasonable under the Fourth Amendment” because its use is so rare.

By August 2006, the court asked the FBI to produce an entire report on how the dialing information obtained through pen registers is stored and kept in its databases. By 2007, the court reported that it modified 18 different government requests out of 98 within six months.

The secret court continued to delete language that would allow the government to use of the post-cut-through-dialed-digits in an emergency — and added a time limit on when it could come back to ask to use that content.

By 2011, the court’s resistance appeared to enter into formal policy, according to the Domestic Investigations and Operations Guide section obtained by The Intercept. The FBI, the guide states, can never in these cases use information like credit card numbers or social security numbers obtained after dialing a phone number, “even in cases of emergency.”

However, that exception still applies in criminal cases, according to the 2011 Operations Guide. “In an emergency,” information obtained from the numbers people dial “may be used as necessary in criminal investigations to prevent immediate danger of death, serious physical injury, or harm to national security,” reads the section on post-cut through dialing digits. And if the target is calling a bank, for example — the FBI cannot get the account number from the call, but they can use the call as a lead, and subpoena the bank for that information instead.

Butler points out that despite the FBI and the secret court’s fight over the information, it is basically impossible to tell whether that information triggered investigative leads agents wouldn’t have otherwise had without the pen register.

The FBI declined to comment on the previously redacted portions of the 2011 Domestic Investigations and Operations Guide obtained by The Intercept as well as the FOIA documents obtained by EPIC.

“The Domestic Investigations and Operations Guide establishes the FBI’s internal rules and procedures, and describes the FBI’s authority to use specific investigative tools as determined through the Constitution, U.S. statutes, executive orders, and the AG Guidelines for Domestic FBI Operations,” Chris Allen, FBI spokesperson, wrote in an email. “These rules are audited and enforced through a rigorous compliance mechanism designed to ensure that FBI assessments and investigations are subject to responsible review and approval.”

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Die Unterwelt des Internets

Hintergrund.de - Mié, 27/07/2016 - 18:39

Der Amokläufer, der vergangene Woche in München neun Menschen und anschließend sich selbst getötet hat, hat seine Waffe im so genannten „Darknet“ besorgt. Heute äußerte sich auch das Bundeskriminalamt zu dieser berüchtigten „Unterwelt des Internets“ –

Von REDAKTION, 27. Juli 2016 –  

Die Polizei hat das Darknet als Teil der Cyberkriminalität schon seit einiger Zeit auf dem Schirm: „Bei der Bekämpfung der Cybercrime kombinieren wir Ermittlungsansätze der digitalen und der analogen Welt", sagte der Präsident des Bundeskriminalamtes (BKA) Holger Münch heute in Wiesbaden bei

Weiterlesen...

“Say Our Children’s Names” – Victims of Police Violence Honored on Stage and Off at Democratic Convention

The Intercept - Engl. - Mié, 27/07/2016 - 17:42

One of the most poignant moments of the Democratic National Convention came on Tuesday night, as Geneva Reed-Veal took the stage. “One year ago yesterday, I lived the worst nightmare anyone could imagine,” she said. “I watched as my daughter, Sandra Bland, was lowered into the ground in a coffin.”

Bland was found “hanging in a jail cell after an unlawful traffic stop and an unlawful arrest,” she continued. Six other women died in custody that same month, she then added, before reciting their rarely heard names one by one. “I’m here with Hillary Clinton because she is a leader and a mother who will say our children’s names.”

“Saying the names” of those killed by police, in custody, or in acts of racist violence, has become a ritual since the deaths of Trayvon Martin and Michael Brown, whose mothers were also on stage at the DNC, together with Reed-Veal and six other women — the “mothers of the movement,” as they have been called.

Going through endless list of people killed by police, it's been going on for at least 20 min #BlackDNCResistance pic.twitter.com/SuzJ9pj44k

— Alice Speri (@alicesperi) July 26, 2016

Just hours before they took their call for justice and an end to violence to the national stage, a similar ritual took place across the city in North Philadelphia, where dozens of protesters had gathered for a “Black DNC Resistance March.” They too, paid tribute to victims of police violence, as a woman standing on the back of a pick-up track read dozens of names, some well-known, most not, into a loudspeaker, handing out sign after sign carrying each name and turning the crowd into a sea of names of the dead. She read names for at least 20 minutes, without pause.

Killed by police #TruthToPower #DemsInPhilly pic.twitter.com/nELuACRH6q

— Alice Speri (@alicesperi) July 26, 2016

At the same time, in another part of Philadelphia, at an art exhibit titled “Truth to Power,” residents and DNC visitors walked around provocative installations portraying police violence, mass incarceration, and racism. They walked through a sea of tags floating from the ceiling, carrying the names of 613 people killed by police in 2016 alone, and a couple items from police reports to describe their lives and deaths. Some blank tags floated as well. “By the time this show closes, we estimate another 15 names will be added to the piece,” a caption read.

But while the pain and anger over police killings of mostly Black and brown men and women resonated across Philadelphia, outside the convention center people expressed deep disillusion in the political class and Democratic nominee to be able or willing to do what it would take to put an end to them.

As Martin’s mother said that Clinton has “the courage to lead the fight for common-sense gun legislation,” and Jordan Davis’s mother Lucia McBath said “Hillary Clinton isn’t afraid to say black lives matter,” protesters on the streets carried a banner saying “Hillary, You’re not welcome here.” As former Attorney General Eric Holder took the DNC stage to say that Clinton “has talked about systemic racism in a way that no one else has” and “will help our nation summon the courage to face racial injustice and face down the legacy of our darkest past,” protesters in the streets chanted “Don’t vote for Hillary, she’s killing black people.”

Stop killing black people #BlackDNCResistance pic.twitter.com/801IQnlGCb

— Alice Speri (@alicesperi) July 26, 2016

“There’s a complete disconnect between us and the people up on top,” said Adeola Adesida, who marched with a sign asking “Who killed Tamir Rice?” and the answers, “A) Cops B) Institutional racism C) GOP/DNC/ ABC/ CBS/ NBC/ FOX D) Corporate AmeriKKKa E) All of the above.” “Maybe the actual people inside the DNC are not paying attention, but this is for you and me and everyone else to be aware of,” she added. ”And eventually when all these people are aware, the people on top, like those at the DNC, are going to have to pay attention.”

You are armed, I am not #BlackDNCResistance pic.twitter.com/asxFom7HSN

— Alice Speri (@alicesperi) July 26, 2016

“We are more than them,” echoed Ysanel Torres, a 19-year-old student who carried a “You are armed, I am not sign” and the words “I’m not sorry” on her shirt. “The DNC has been overshadowing the conversation of Black Lives Matter and this is the conversation that should be the biggest, and is the biggest concern in the US currently.”

“But regardless of if they’re listening now, they’ll be listening soon. Maybe this sounds disruptive to some people, I think it’s disruptive that they’ve been killing us,” she said, adding “Fuck Hillary, Fuck the police.” “I don’t think she’ll be doing anything supportive for us after this week.”

In fact, the Black DNC resistance march — which drew so many white protesters that at some point organizers had to ask “all white people to move to the back” — was little different in sentiment from all other protests in Philadelphia this week: if the emphasis now was on black lives, the sense of anger, disenchantment, and complete lack of confidence in the political system in general and the Democratic Party in particular had been voiced all week long, and captured in cynical streets signs like “If voting could change anything they wouldn’t let us do it.”

Carrying the DNC coffin at #BlackDNCResistance pic.twitter.com/1nXciMGkyo

— Alice Speri (@alicesperi) July 26, 2016

“I can’t trust them to do work from the inside, we have to do the work from the outside,” said Jamhar James, who with three other men was carrying a “DNC” coffin down the streets of Philadelphia. “They can’t do it because they don’t understand us.”

James said he “almost cried” when Obama was elected in 2008, but didn’t vote for him four years later. A Bernie Sanders supporter contemplating a switch to Jill Stein, he slammed Democrats for allowing the Voting Rights Act to be “gutted” on their watch. But he also recognized, commenting on the white crowd at the march, that many black people felt so checked out from the political process that even protest seemed futile.

“More and more black people just feel disenfranchised and don’t feel part of the system,” he said. “Why would they come here and protest? Even if they live up in North Philly, why would they come down here? They’ll say, ain’t nothing gonna happen. But we have to show them that it is, or that it can happen.”

While the so-called “black vote” remains solidly with the Democratic Party and Hillary Clinton, whose convention so far has been filled with the support of prominent black individuals, from Michelle Obama to Alicia Keys, and unprecedented talk of racial justice —  that support was not granted and was quickly eroding, some warned.

What side are you on? #BlackDNCResistance pic.twitter.com/UAwDKd7jL7

— Alice Speri (@alicesperi) July 26, 2016

“Historically the Republicans were so racist – well, after the Democrats stopped being the party of the slave holders — that Democrats kind of looked good, and a lot of black folks were desperate and almost felt like they had to cling on to something,” said John Parker, who was at the march and recently lost a run for U.S. Senate in California, where he ran as a Peace and Freedom Party candidate. “That’s what the Dems held over them, but people are starting to see that they’re not helping.”

“They’ll tell you, we’ll get in office, don’t worry about it, we’ll take care of it, don’t go out and protest, and when the movement dies down, repression gets higher,” he said, adding that it was particularly “hypocritical” of the Clintons to portray themselves as champions of racial justice when they were the ones behind “all those laws that have caused so many black and brown people to be in jail.”

If not all criticism of Clinton and the DNC’s racial justice platform was as angry as that poured onto the streets of Philadelphia on Tuesday, many advocates of sweeping police and criminal justice reform remained skeptical.

“It’s OK for Democrats to say sentencing reform or more training for cops but they need to get specific,” said Scott Roberts, a campaign director for Color of Change, a group that is fighting to defund abusive police departments. “It’s a very powerful thing to bring those women out and unless you’re really ready to have solutions and be accountable, that’s touchy to me,” he added, referring to the Mothers of the Movement. “We’re going to be looking for real specifics from Hillary in terms of how she wants to deal with these policing issues.”

Russell's self portrait, made with his prison papers #TruthToPower #DemsInPhilly pic.twitter.com/ppnqdD5fYo

— Alice Speri (@alicesperi) July 26, 2016

Color of Change was one of several groups discussing criminal justice reform at the “Truth To Power” art exhibit, where visitors walked by black and white paintings portraying the killings of Walter Scott and Eric Garner. Another painting showed black parents having “The Talk” with their child as a television screen flashed news of “no indictment in police shooting of unarmed youth.”

A giant map of the United States made of guns hanging from a ceiling was titled “Identity Crisis,” and piece after piece spoke of social justice issues organizers of the event hope would make it into the policy priorities of those at the DNC.

Philadelphia artist Russell Craig stood in front his wall-sized self-portrait, painted over pages of his incarceration and probation paperwork and broken into four panels that made him look as if he were the target of a gun’s viewfinder. “I’m being targeted by a system of mass incarceration and of them shooting black people on camera and getting away with it,” he said. “There’s lot of stuff that’s going on and there’s nobody doing nothing about it. I don’t know where they’re at.”

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DNC Ignores Muslims’ Objections, Gives Michael Bloomberg Starring Role at Convention

The Intercept - Engl. - Mié, 27/07/2016 - 16:50

Former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg will be a primetime speaker at the Democratic National Convention on Wednesday,  despite his support and defense of a discredited New York Police Department program that systematically spied on American Muslims in their neighborhoods and places of worship during his tenure.

In interviews with The Intercept, Muslim attendees decried Bloomberg’s starring role at the convention, but numerous Democratic officials and lawmakers refused to condemn Bloomberg’s policies towards Muslims and expressed their delight at his appearance.

The Clinton campaign reached out to Bloomberg about a speaking role several weeks ago but the announcement didn’t become public until late last week, after the former mayor and billionaire businessman publicly endorsed the Democratic nominee.

The Clinton campaign has been courting endorsements from independents and centrist Republicans in an effort to appeal to Republican voters uncomfortable with Donald Trump. Bloomberg was first elected mayor in 2001 as a Republican and later became an independent. He seriously contemplated running for president himself this year. He remains an unapologetic defender of the financial services industry – and his administration’s policing tactics.

At a luncheon for Muslim delegates on Monday, several Muslim Democrats told The Intercept they objected to Bloomberg’s invitation, saying it would only be welcome if he formally apologized for his support of the spying program.

Mohammed Shariff, a Philadelphia-based attorney who organized the event, said he has represented clients who have been surveilled on by the FBI. “I don’t think he should be here,” he said of Bloomberg.

“Either he should not be allowed to speak, or if he speaks he should apologize for it,” said Mazen Mokhtar, an official of the Muslim American Society.

Others expressed concern that Bloomberg’s invitation could be a sign Hillary Clinton might bring back Muslim profiling under a different name, potentially under the guise of something like the FBI’s controversial Countering Violent Extremism program. Imam Suetwidien Muhammad, president of the Muslim League of Voters of New Jersey, said of the invitation: “So what does that tell you? Hillary might do the same thing.”

Linda Sarsour, a New York delegate for Sen. Bernie Sanders, told The Intercept on Tuesday that it was hypocritical for Democrats to invite Bloomberg. “Michael Bloomberg allowed and justified wholesale surveillance of Muslims under his watch,” she said, noting that when a similar proposal was “touted by then-GOP candidate Ted Cruz” it was widely criticized by Democrats.

“How can we be mad at Cruz, but then give a platform to a former mayor of a city that targeted Muslims for their faith?” she asked.

But a long line of Democratic officials, including members of Congress and the spokesperson for the Hillary Clinton campaign, refused to criticize Bloomberg’s invitation or call for him to recant his support for surveilling Muslims.

They didn’t defend the spying program, but they did defend Bloomberg’s speaking role, which they cited as evidence of how inclusive and accepting the party is.

Hillary Clinton spokesman Brian Fallon said the invitation showed “the breadth of support that her candidacy is generating.” He explained: “There are going to be speakers that are disagreeing with her on a range of issues, but the point is that we can focus on coming together on the issues that are most important, and find common ground, and build bridges.”

The program was hardly a minor feature of Bloomberg’s tenure. The Associated Press revealed in 2011 that under Bloomberg, the NYPD had spied on every mosque within 100 miles of New York City and sent informants to infiltrate Muslim student organizations, charities, and businesses.

According to a 2007 report from the NYPD’s intelligence division, the department was investigating suspicious “radicalization indicators” such as  “wearing traditional Islamic clothing [and] growing a beard,” abstaining from alcohol, and “becoming involved in social activism.” In 2012, the Department was forced to admit in court testimony that the program had never generated an investigative lead, and in 2014, Mayor Bill De Blasio shut it down.

That didn’t please Donald Trump at the time:

The NYPD Surveillance Program kept NYC safe since 9/11. There will be tragic consequences for ending it.

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) April 22, 2014

Last year, as a candidate for president, Trump cited the NYPD spying on Muslims as a success — and as a model for the entire country.

Rev. Leah Daughtry, current DNC CEO and daughter of famed civil rights leader Rev. Herbert Daughtry, defended the invitation to Bloomberg as a free speech issue. “It’s America and we have freedom of speech, and people get to say what they want, and get to endorse who they want,” she told The Intercept. “This is the big-tent party, we don’t have to agree on everything, we just have to agree on the main thing.”

When asked if she was happy to bring in someone who oversaw the policies Trump is now praising, she ignored the question.

Julian Castro, Secretary of Housing and Urban Development and a shortlist candidate for Clinton’s running mate, said, “What you see in the Democratic party is a bigger tent party, and it is inclusive.”

Oregon Democratic Rep. Earl Blumenauer was unfazed by Muslim American criticism of Bloomberg. “I’m pleased [by] anybody who joins the coalition,” he remarked. “I’m not at this point going to start moving people off the stage.”

Rep. Peter Welch, D-Vt., told us he’s “against those programs” that Bloomberg instated. But when asked if Bloomberg should recant his support for them, he walked away.

Some members of Congress claimed they were ignorant about the spying in question.

“I gotta think about your question, I don’t know what you’re talking about,” said Ed Perlmutter, D- Colo.

“I’m unfamiliar with the role he played in any kind of surveillance of Muslims,” said Rep. Eleanor Holmes Norton of Washington D.C.

“I have to tell you, I should be better informed. I can’t answer with any seriousness…I just don’t know [about the spying],” said Rep. Luis Gutierrez, D-Ill., one of the primary drafters of the Democratic Party’s 2016 platform. It was a curious answer, given that Gutierrez denounced the NYPD program in an address to Chicago Muslims in 2012.

Rep. Andre Carson, D-Ind., the second Muslim ever elected to Congress, did not condemn the invitation, but bemoaned the fact that the Muslim community seemed powerless to make their protest heard. “Until we make our voting bloc matter, no one is going to listen to what we have to say,” he said.

One Democratic lawmaker we spoke to called for a Bloomberg apology. “He should apologize for that, just like he should apologize for stop and frisk,”  said Democratic Georgia State Senator Vincent Fort, referring to the program in which thousands of mostly black and brown New Yorkers were stopped and interrogated by police with little justification.

“He should apologize for singling out Muslims, Muslim Americans for surveillance. Very important. The same mindset that spies on Muslim Americans is the same mindset that says…we gotta stop and frisk people. I’m not a fan of Michael Bloomberg.”

Top photo: Bloomberg with Donald Trump and Joe Torre in 2008.

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Mission Creep im Mittelmeer

IMI Tübingen - Mié, 27/07/2016 - 16:12
Nach den eher vorsichtigen Angaben des Missing Migrants Projects der International Organization for Migration (IOM) sind im Jahr 2014 3.297, 2015 3.673 und 2016 allein bis 21. Juli 2.997 Menschen beim Versuch, das Mittelmeer nach Europa zu überqueren, umgekommen. Allein (…)

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Will Bernie’s Supporters Stay Home on Election Day? We Asked Them.

The Intercept - Engl. - Mié, 27/07/2016 - 00:57

Tuesday morning was a rough one for Bernie Sanders, but maybe an even rougher one for the people who helped make him a household name.

For many, the road to Sanders’s Monday speech at the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia stretched back nearly five years, to Zuccotti Park, when a motley collective of anarchists, labor organizers, and intellectuals sparked a nationwide movement when they decided to step outside the ordinary channels of dissent, pitch a tent, and Occupy Wall Street. The movement and its approach — social justice, economic fairness, civil disobedience, and an unwillingness to compromise with existing power structures — outlived the occupation, finding an unlikely voice and millions of new adherents in the insurgent primary candidacy of Bernie Sanders, Senator from Vermont, who was elected as an independent and describes himself, without apology, as a democratic socialist. Sanders mounted a serious challenge to favorite Hillary Clinton for this year’s Democratic nomination, giving thousands of his young followers their first taste of what it feels like to participate in the American electoral system, and to win, taking more than 40 percent of the popular vote and winning 23 states outright.

That road turned sharply last night in Philadelphia, when Sanders took the stage at the Democratic National Convention and attempted to throw his weight behind Clinton, the presumptive nominee. Unlike Senator Ted Cruz, the Tea Party purist who did not endorse Donald Trump in Cleveland, Sanders chose to fully ally himself with his party’s nominee. He did so at the risk of offending the activist core who helped give him a seat at the table in the first place.

After several large street protests in the afternoon, the convention floor was mostly orderly last night, though a few delegates wore blue tape over their mouths. The pro-Bernie booing and chanting that provoked some awkward on-stage ad-libbing from Sen. Al Franken and comedian Sarah Silverman midway through the program had mostly settled down by the time Sanders himself took the stag. There was a 60-person Occupy-style “mic check” after the convention adjourned. After midnight, on Packer Avenue, there were shouts of “Never Hillary!” as two Sanders supporters made their way back towards the city on foot.

“Maybe it was a mistake to build our movement around Bernie,” said Justine Tunney, a software engineer. “It empowered him to funnel that will into Hillary.”

“We need a movement that truly represents the will of the people,” she added. “We need a popular movement. Populism is great. How is it a controversial idea that government should care about the will of the people? There are two populist candidates: Bernie Sanders and Donald Trump. The establishment has forced us into an impossible position by taking away one of those choices. What do they expect us to do? Stay home?”

I asked Tunney whether I should interpret what she said as support for Trump. “Not necessarily,” she said. She declined to say what she would do if the election were held today. “I’m still coming to terms with the fact that Bernie probably isn’t going to get the nomination,” she said.

Tunney was eating lunch at a vegetarian restaurant in Center City with Micah White. White came up with the initial idea of Occupying Wall Street during his time at Adbusters, the Canadian anti-consumerist nonprofit. He has filed the paperwork to run for mayor of Nehalem, Ore., the small town where he lives with his wife and daughter. He told me that he does not generally vote in presidential elections, and does not plan to vote in November.

White seemed to put Sanders on a slightly lower pedestal than Tunney did. But like Tunney, he said that the endorsement of Clinton left him in a confusing position. “It was a strategic mistake to focus on a single charismatic individual rather than build an actual movement,” he added. White was also critical of Sanders using the word “revolution.” “He is degrading the meaning of the word,” White said. “What he’s doing isn’t revolutionary. Revolution is when you change the way power flows in a society. Bernie is rallying people behind a major establishment candidate who’s raised more money than any other candidate in the election. His job now is to bring the far left into the political establishment.”

Nevertheless, White had managed to slip Sanders a copy of his book, “The End of Protest,” that very morning. (The book calls for activist movements to move beyond “disruptive tactics” and to come up with innovative new tactics that “harness the creativity of people from across the political spectrum.”)

Some believe that Sanders did right by his movement, bringing activists onto the convention floor and pushing the Democratic Party to reform its primary system. “Bernie held onto his principles even when they went out of fashion and lived long enough to see them become popular again,” my colleague Murtaza Hussein wrote last night.

But not everyone viewed the situation so optimistically. After lunch, I saw a man in his late twenties in a t-shirt marching towards City Hall. He carried a ragged red flag, the size of bedsheet, which was stapled to a long wooden pole. His name was Scott Warren. He said that he was 27 years old and lives in Center City

The red flag, he said, did not signify Communism, but something more personal. “The flag means general dissent,” he said. “I picked it up at a march yesterday. I had my own sign. It said ‘Syrian Children,’ on it. The march was about not just the election but war, the environment, Black Lives Matter. And I don’t see enough people talking about the bombings going on in Syria, or the C.I.A.-backed ‘moderate’ rebels, who are killing kids. Nobody is really talking about that. So I quickly made a little side that said ‘Syrian Children’ on it. The march started off at City Hall and it went all the way down to F.D.R. Park, at Wells Fargo. It was like three thousand. Maybe ten or twenty thousand at its peak. But my sign fell apart in the rain. So now I have this flag.”

I asked him again what the red flag meant.

“I’m not just going to walk down the street and pretend that nothing is wrong,” he said. My putting the flag up means ‘I’m not happy. Things are bad. I mean, I think things are bad.”

Warren said that he had volunteered for the Sanders campaign, the first he had ever been involved with. “I phone banked, a little bit. I went to several marches in Philly. I came [with] money. Some. Not much. Just cause I’m like, you know, income-low.” He works at the Philadelphia Zoo, he said.

“The DNC itself is a sham to me,” he said. He accused the DNC of election fraud. As evidence, he cited recently-released emails, discrepancies between exit polls and actual results, and “collaboration between the media, or mainstream media, with the Hillary campaign along with the DNC.”

As for Sanders’s endorsement: “To me, I think he fears Trump. I fear everybody. You can’t expect, voting for the lesser evil every four years, for things to get better. The lesser evil eventually becomes the greater evil.”

Like Tunney, Warren declined to say whom he would choose between Trump and Clinton if the election were held today. Unlike with Tunney, I may not have asked him the question directly.

The Trump campaign has been making efforts to court disaffected Sanders supporters like Warren, appropriating rhetoric like “rigged system” which originated with left-wing critiques of the two-party electoral process and which appeared in Senator Elizabeth Warren’s Monday night speech.

Justin Molito, a union organizer from Connecticut and committed Sanders delegate, had been listening to Scott Warren’s words. His convention credentials were adorned with buttons for Bernie and against the Trans-Pacific Partnership. He had come from an event organized by Working Families, an advocacy group focused on economic inequality, but swung by a delegate event at the Capital Grille on Broad to grab a free sandwich when Warren walked by with his red flag.

“I’ve yet to meet a Bernie Sanders supporter who would support Donald Trump,” he said. “I think it’s a bit of a media construct. That [Trump] is obviously not an option. I live in a state that’s likely not to be that close. But if I feel like I have to vote for Hillary Clinton to stop Donald Trump from becoming president, that’s what I’ll do.”

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Bernie Sanders Delegates Prepare to Confront Obama About TPP, Symbol of Corporate Control

The Intercept - Engl. - Mar, 26/07/2016 - 23:09

Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders both now oppose the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) — so why were so many Bernie Sanders delegates yelling about it Monday night and waving anti-TPP signs over their head?

The TPP has become a hot-button issue for a lot of progressives who want the party to take a more anti-corporate tone.

Some of the opposition comes from bad memories of the lost jobs that came in the wake of the NAFTA agreement in the 1990s. But the TPP is not actually a free trade pact. It won’t lower tariffs, the most common trade barriers.

In fact, the TPP is more focused on crafting regulatory regimes that benefit certain industries. It would expand corporate and investor rights at the expense of medical affordability, the environment, and labor rights.

For Bernie Sanders supporters — and some Trump supporters — the TPP has become shorthand for corporate control of the political process. Hillary Clinton was a late convert — and not particularly sincere at that.

So that’s why you saw Sanders delegates waving their sign around — and that’s why some of them plan to make their opposition known Wednesday night when the pact’s foremost proponent, President Barack Obama, speaks on the convention floor.

It’s not just a matter of principle either. Although Obama is leaving office, opponents of the pact worry that the next five months offer him an opportunity to seek a final vote on the agreement, including during the crucial lame-duck session after the election, but before inauguration.

Utah Sanders delegate Cheryl Butler told The Intercept that she anticipates the same raucous chants and sign-waving against the TPP that took place on the DNC floor on Monday.

“I think people that are very strongly against the TPP have a right and responsibility to make their voices heard,” she said.

Early Tuesday morning, during Oregon’s state party meeting, delegates broke out into chants of “No TPP!” during a speech by its Democratic Sen. Ron Wyden, who supports the agreement.

Jeremy Likens, a Sanders delegate from Oregon, explained that the campaign’s delegates came to the convention to move the party on issues, not just to support the Vermont senator.

“We’re here; we’re informed voters who care about things, like making sure to stop the TPP,” he said.

Carolanne Fry, another pledged Sanders delegate from Oregon, said she has met numerous Clinton delegates who also oppose the TPP, but that they didn’t appreciate the sign-waving tactics on Monday. “They were getting really frustrated that we were holding them,” she reflected.

Indeed, several Clinton delegates told The Intercept that they trusted Clinton’s judgment on the issue and would not take part in any protests of Obama’s speech.

Elena McCullough, who serves as the vice president of the Democratic Hispanic Caucus of Florida and as an at-large delegate for Clinton from Florida, said she prefers to trust her candidate over taking protest action.

“When [Clinton] takes the reins of the country, she is going to make a decision that she believes is best for the country. I’m very certain that whatever decision she does, … she will have analyzed it, she will have researched it, and she will do what is best for the country,” she said. “I don’t think we’re going to have any kind of scuffle in any way, shape, or form. I believe we’ve come together.”

Jamian Smith, a Clinton delegate from Washington state, said she’s “pretty sure” that delegates from her delegation, which is overwhelmingly made up of Sanders backers, will engage in some sort of protest during Obama’s speech. She, however, had no intention of joining them.

“I think the TPP could be improved. I don’t think that it’s necessary to completely scuttle it,” she said. “We prefer to go in the system. … holding up signs is great, you’re making your voice heard, but nothing’s really being done when you do that.”

Victor Quiroz, a Clinton delegate from California, sported an anti-TPP button. Yet he opposed making any sort of public statement during Obama’s speech. He was confident that Clinton would maintain her position.

“You don’t … embarrass your chief. You do not do that,” he instructed, opposing any protests. “Secretary Clinton, she opposes TPP.”

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Öffentlicher Appell an die deutsche Bundesregierung sowie die Institutionen des Europarates, der OSZE und der NATO

No to NATO - Mar, 26/07/2016 - 21:24

IALANA Stellungnahme

I

Als das türkische Verfassungsgericht Ende Februar 2016 die angeordnete Untersuchungshaft gegen zwei Journalisten aufhob, die die Unterstützung militanter Islamisten in Syrien durch türkische Stellen aufgedeckt hatten, drohte der türkische Präsident Erdogan den Richtern: „Ich sage es offen und klar, ich akzeptiere das nicht und füge mich der Entscheidung nicht, ich respektiere sie auch nicht.“ [i]Dieser Drohung hat er jetzt Taten folgen lassen.

Als Vorwand dafür hat er den am 15. Juli d.J. gescheiterten Putschversuch von Teilen des türkischen Militärs genutzt. Seit der Nacht vom 15. auf den 16. Juli 2016 sind an Hand von offenkundig lange vorbereiteten Listen fast 3000 RichterInnen und StaatsanwältInnen durch die Exekutive ihres Amtes enthoben und ein Großteil von ihnen verhaftet worden. Die Suspendierungen und Repressionen sind auf Tausende von Journalisten, Lehrern, Professoren, Rechtsanwälten und Angehörigen von Bildungseinrichtungen ausgedehnt worden. Zeitungen sowie Rundfunk- und Fernsehsender sind geschlossen oder gleichgeschaltet worden. Unter Berufung auf die türkische Verfassung und Art. 15 der Europäischen Menschenrechtskonvention hat die türkische Regierung zudem jetzt den „Ausnahmezustand“ verhängt, um sich lästiger rechtstaatlicher Fesseln zu entledigen.

II

Die NATO schweigt bisher zu diesen Vorgängen. Dabei sind alle NATO-Mitgliedsstaaten verpflichtet, „die Freiheit, das gemeinsame Erbe und die Zivilisation ihrer Völker, die auf den Grundsätzen der Demokratie, der Freiheit der Person und der Herrschaft des Rechts beruhen, zu gewährleisten“ (Satz 2 der Präambel des NATO-Vertrages).

Wir stellen fest, dass das Vorgehen von Präsident Erdogan und seiner Regierung mit den völkerrechtlichen Verpflichtungen unvereinbar ist, die die Türkei jedenfalls durch den Beitritt zum Europarat und durch die Ratifizierung der Europäischen Menschenrechtskonvention (EMRK) eingegangen ist. Die mit einer Verhängung des Ausnahmezustandes verbundene „Aussetzung“ grundrechtlicher Garantien der EMRK käme nach Art. 15 EMRK allein dann in Betracht, wenn „das Leben der Nation durch Krieg oder einen anderen öffentlichen Notstand bedroht ist“. Diese Voraussetzung ist in der

Türkei heute schon deshalb nicht gegeben, weil der versuchte Militärputsch bereits am 16. Juli d.J. niedergeschlagen und gescheitert war, also jedenfalls seitdem schon aus diesem Grunde nicht mehr als Rechtfertigung für die Verhängung des Ausnahmezustandes herangezogen werden darf. Die Türkei hat keinerlei Recht, die EMRK und die Unabhängigkeit der Justiz nach eigenem Belieben einzuschränken.

Es darf nicht hingenommen werden, dass die Meinungs-, Informations- und Versammlungsfreiheit sowie die Pressefreiheit in der Türkei entgegen Art. 9 und 10 EMRK eingeschränkt werden und dass entgegen Art. 5 und 8 EMRK die persönliche Freiheit und Sicherheit sowie das Recht auf Achtung des Privat- und Familienlebens von Erdogan-Kritikern nicht gesichert sind. Ferner verstößt es gegen die EMRK, dass den nach Medienberichten zwischenzeitlich mehr als 50.000 suspendierten türkischen Staatsbediensteten und anderen Verhafteten die in Art. 6 EMRK garantierten Rechte auf ein faires Verfahren vorenthalten werden. Ausweislich der uns von betroffenen Richtern zugegangenen E-mails werden die Betroffenen entgegen Art. 6 Abs. 3 EMRK jedenfalls nicht „innerhalb möglichst kurzer Frist … in allen Einzelheiten über Art und Grund der gegen sie erhobenen Beschuldigungen unterrichtet“. Beweise für eine behauptete Verwicklung in den gescheiterten Militärputsch oder andere Amtspflichtverletzungen werden den Betroffenen über den schlichten Verweis auf die Listen hinaus weder mitgeteilt noch gar nachprüfbar vorgelegt.

III

Die Suspendierungen und Verhaftungen der mehr als 500 Verwaltungsrichter, von mehreren Verfassungsrichtern und mehr als 2000 RichterInnen anderer Gerichte lassen die Zielrichtung erkennen: Die von Präsident Erdogan und seiner AKP-Regierung angeordneten und veranlassten Maßnahmen zielen vor allem auf die Ausschaltung einer unabhängigen Justiz, die Einschüchterung und Unterdrückung jeder Opposition, die Gleichschaltung der Presse und Medien sowie auf die möglichst ungehinderte Errichtung eines autoritären Präsidialregimes mit einem ungehemmten Führerkult.

Das dürfen die Vertragsstaaten der EMRK und die Institutionen des Europarates nicht länger widerspruchslos hinnehmen. Die Forderung der Bundeskanzlerin und von Bundesinnenminister de Maizière an Präsident Erdogan, das „Gebot der Verhältnismäßigkeit“ zu wahren, stellt die repressiven Maßnahmen gegen die türkische Bevölkerung im Grundsatz nicht in Frage, sondern geht von deren Legitimität aus. Sehr befremdlich ist es, dass Bundesaußenminister Frank-Walter Steinmeier am 21.7.2016 in Washington erklärt hat, der in der Türkei verhängte Notstand müsse „auf die unbedingt notwendige Dauer beschränkt und dann unverzüglich beendet“[ii] werden. Auch das legitimiert den aktuell verhängten „Ausnahmezustand“. Präsident Erdogan wird alldies freuen.

IV

  1. Wir fordern die deutsche Bundesregierung und die Regierungen aller Vertragsstaaten des Europarates auf, beim Europäischen Menschenrechtsgerichtshof in Straßburg eine Staatenbeschwerde nach Art. 33 der EMRK[iii] gegen die Türkei zu erheben, um ein EMRK-konformes Verhalten einzufordern und durchzusetzen. Zur Vorbereitung sollte unverzüglich eine Expertenkommission mit „fact finding“-Befugnissen entsandt werden. Sie sollte sicherstellen, dass sich verfolgte und verhaftete Bürgerinnen und Bürger in der Türkei ungehindert mit der Bitte um Unterstützung an sie wenden können.
  2. Auch die OSZE ist gefordert. Das „Menschenrechtskomitee („Human Dimension Committee“) der OSZE muss sich unverzüglich mit der Menschenrechtslage in der Türkei befassen. Sie sollte eine sofortige Rücknahme der pauschalen listenmäßigen Suspendierung der RichterInnen und StaatsanwältInnen, der Eingriffe in die Unabhängigkeit der Justiz und ein Ende der Verstöße gegen zentrale Menschenrechte einfordern.
  3. Der NATO-Rat muss  auf der Ebene der Staats- und Regierungschefs baldmöglichst zu einer Sondersitzung zusammentreten, um die Türkei eindringlich auf ihre demokratischen und rechtsstaatlichen Pflichten als NATO-Mitgliedsstaat hinzuweisen. Die in der Türkei im NATO-Rahmen stationierten 102 Atomsprengköpfe müssen dort unverzüglich abgezogen werden. Alle Waffen- und Rüstungslieferungen sowie alle Finanztransfers an das Erdogan-Regime müssen sofort bis auf Weiteres gestoppt werden.
  4. Die Tornado-Einheit der Bundes-Luftwaffe sollte unverzüglich aus Incirlik abgezogen werden.

 

Berlin, den 24./25.7.2016

 

 

 

[i] Vgl. u.a. http://www.faz.net/aktuell/politik/ausland/europa/tuerkei-lange-haftstrafen-fuer-regierungskritische-journalisten-14219395.html

[ii] http://www.faz.net/aktuell/politik/ausland/europa/tuerkei/frank-walter-steinmeier-ruft-erdogan-zu-verhaeltnismaessigkeit-auf-14350353.html

[iii] Art. 33 EMRK (Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms) – Inter-State cases: Any High Contracting Party may refer to the Court any alleged breach of the provisions of the Convention and the protocols thereto by another High Contracting Party.

 

 

 

 

IALANA

Marienstraße 19/20

10117 Berlin

www.ialana.de

*protected email*

 

Koordinierungskreis der Kampagne vereinbart nach der beeindruckenden Menschenkette die Fortsetzung der Aktionen

No to NATO - Mar, 26/07/2016 - 21:18
Pressemitteilung

Der Koordinierungskreis der Kampagne Stopp Ramstein traf sich in Frankfurt zur Auswertung der Menschenkette, des Camps und der inhaltlichen Veranstaltungen vom 10.-12.06.2016.

Koordinierungskreis der Kampagne vereinbart nach der beeindruckenden Menschenkette die Fortsetzung der Aktionen

Es wurde eine ausgesprochen positive Bilanz  – der  beeindruckenden, bislang größten Aktion der Friedensbewegung in Ramstein und der größte Protest, der bisher in einem westlichen Land gegen den Drohnenkrieg stattgefunden hat – gezogen.

Hervorgehoben wurde besonders:

  • Die Veränderung des politischen Klimas in der Region durch die vielfältigen Aktionen. Die Friedensbewegung ist vor Ort präsent und beeinflusst die öffentliche Debatte zunehmend, besonders mit den Argumenten gegen den Drohnenkrieg.
  • Die quantitativ großen Aktionen, die  Menschenkette mit ca. 5000 Menschen, eingebettet in eine inhaltliche Debatte über Friedenssicherung und Abrüstung, über Konversion und zivile Konfliktbearbeitung. Ramstein  2016 war antimilitaristische Aufklärung pur.
  • Die nachdrückliche Forderung an die Bundesregierung, die Nutzung der Satelliten-Relaisstation auf der Air Base Ramstein für den völkerrechtswidrigen US-Drohnen-Krieg sofort zu unterbinden.
  • Die immer wieder erhobene Forderung an die Bunderegierung, das Stationierungsabkommen zu kündigen und damit den weltweiten Drohneneinsatz von deutschem Boden aus zu beenden und die US Basis langfristig zu schließen. Der Schlüssel zur Beendigung der völkerrechtswidrigen Kriege von deutschem Boden aus liegt in Berlin bei der Bundesregierung. Diese Aussage durchzog wie ein roter Faden die Aktionen in Ramstein.
  • Betont wurde die solidarische Zusammenarbeit der unterschiedlichen Kräfte der Friedensbewegung, sowohl national als auch international. Bisher noch abseits stehende Menschen und Organisationen sollen verstärkt gewonnen werden.

Der Koordinierungskreis vereinbarte die Auswertung auf einem 2. Treffen fortzusetzen. Es bestand Einigkeit, dass die Aktionen mit einem Höhepunkt 2017 fortgesetzt werden sollen und dezentrale Aktivitäten in den einzelnen Städten vorbereitet werden. Zukünftig soll noch intensiver an konstruktiven Konzepten zur Überwindung von Rüstung und Militär, wie beispielsweise Konversion und zivile Konfliktbearbeitung, gearbeitet werden und diese allgemeinverständlich vermittelt werden.

Vereinbart wird die Einladung zur großen „Planungskonferenz Ramstein 2017“ am 26.11.2016 in Frankfurt/M. Dort sollen die Aktivitäten für das Jahr 2017 vereinbart werden.

Ein Auswertungspapier der Aktionen vom 10.-12.06. kann in Kürze auf den Webseiten der Kampagne Stopp Ramstein (www.ramstein-kampagne.eu) und des Bundesausschusses Friedensratschlag (http://www.friedensratschlag.de) heruntergeladen werden.

Der Koordinierungskreis begrüßt die bundesweite Demonstration der Dachverbände der Friedensbewegung am 8.10.2016 in Berlin.

Weitere Informationen: Reiner Braun (0172 2317475), Pascal Luig (0177 7872145), Horst Trapp (069 24249950)

Aktionsbüro Ramstein-Kampagne

Marienstraße 19/20

10117 Berlin

Tel.: 030 20 65 48 57

Fax: 030 31 99 66 89

*protected email*

www.ramstein-kampagne.eu

Rezepte gegen Terror gesucht

Hintergrund.de - Mar, 26/07/2016 - 20:52

Politiker suchen nach Antworten auf die Anschläge der vergangenen Tage –

Von REDAKTION, 26. Juli 2016 –

Nach den Anschlägen von Würzburg, München und Ansbach ist die Debatte um politische Konsequenzen voll entbrannt. Das Spektrum derjenigen, die sagen, es könne nicht weiter gehen wie bisher, reicht von Bayerns Innenminister Joachim Herrmann bis hin zur Fraktionschefin der Linken im Bundestag, Sahra Wagenknecht. Sie sagte gestern: „Der Staat muss jetzt alles dafür tun, dass sich die Menschen in unserem Land wieder sicher fühlen können. Das setzt voraus, dass wir wissen, wer sich

Weiterlesen...

Statement from the German Section of IALANA

No to NATO - Mar, 26/07/2016 - 20:02

Open Appeal to the German Government and to the Council of Europe, OSCE and NATO

I

In February 2016 the Turkish Constitutional Court revoked the pre-trial imprisonment imposed upon two journalists who had uncovered support provided by Turkish authorities to militant Islamists in Syria. In response, the Turkish President Erdogan threatened the judges: “I don’t need to accept [this decision], I want to make that clear. I don’t obey or respect the decision.[i] Deeds have now followed these words.

The pretext came in the form of the failed coup attempt by parts of the Turkish military in the night from July 15 to July 16, 2016. Since that night, the executive has removed almost 3000 judges and state prosecutors from office, with the majority of them also detained. It seems apparent that lists of targets had already been drawn up before the event. The suspensions and repression have been extended to include thousands of journalists, teachers, professors, lawyers and employees in various educational establishments. Newspapers and radio/TV broadcasters have been shut down or brought into line. Invoking the Turkish constitution and Article 15 of the European Convention on Human Rights, the Turkish government has declared a “state of emergency” in order to free itself from further bothersome constitutional limitations.

II

To date, NATO has remained silent on these events. This in spite of the fact that all NATO member states are obliged to “safeguard the freedom, common heritage and civilisation of their peoples, founded on the principles of democracy, individual liberty and the rule of law.” (Preamble to NATO Treaty, sentence 2)

We determine that the approach taken by President Erdogan and his government does not accord with the obligations of international law that Turkey entered into by joining the Council of Europe and by ratifying the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR). The “derogation” from constitutional guarantees in a state of emergency, as regulated by Article 15 of the ECHR, only comes into consideration if “war or other public emergency [is] threatening the life of the nation”. This condition is not fulfilled in Turkey. The attempted military coup had already been defeated on July 16. Since it failed, it cannot be used as a justification for declaring a state of emergency. Turkey has no right at all to arbitrarily restrict the applicability of the ECHR and the independence of the judiciary.

It cannot be accepted that the freedoms of expression, information and assembly, as well as press freedom, are being restricted in Turkey, contravening Art. 9 and 10 of the ECHR, or that in violation of Art. 5 and 8, the right to liberty and security of person as well as the right to respect for one’s private and family life are not being guaranteed for those critical of the Erdogan government. Furthermore, it is a violation of the ECHR if the 50,000 suspended employees of the Turkish state and other detainees (as reported in the media) are not being guaranteed the rights secured in Art. 6 of the ECHR to a fair trial. According to e-mails sent to us by some affected judges, those affected by these measures are also not being “informed promptly, in a language which he understands and in detail, of the nature and cause of the accusation against him”, as per Art. 6 (3) of the ECHR. Those affected are not being presented with any verifiable evidence or even told about any evidence for the claims they were involved in the failed coup or for any other breaches of their official duties.

III

The suspensions and detentions of more than 500 administrative judges, several constitutional court judges, and more than 2000 judges from other courts all indicate the direction this is heading in: the measures being ordered by President Erdogan and his AKP government aim above all to neutralise the independent judiciary, to intimidate and repress any opposition, to bring the press and media into line, and to remove as many obstructions as possible to the establishment of an authoritarian presidential regime with an unbridled leadership cult.

The signatories to the ECHR and the institutions of the Council of Europe should no longer accept this without objections. The German Chancellor and the Minister of the Interior demanded that President Erdogan apply the “principle of proportionality”. With this demand they are not questioning the measures being taken by the government in principle, but rather assuming they are generally legitimate. It is very disconcerting to hear the German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier declare in Washington on July 21, 2016, that the state of emergency declared in Turkey has to be “limited to the absolutely necessary duration and then ended immediately”[ii]. This statement, too, legitimises the current “state of emergency”. So President Erdogan will be quite happy with it.

IV

  1. We call on the Federal German government and the governments of all contracting states in the Council of Europe to file an inter-state case against Turkey at the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg under Art. 33 of the ECHR[iii], in order to demand and enforce conduct in compliance with the ECHR. To prepare for this, an expert commission with a fact-finding mandate should be deployed without delay. This commission should ensure that Turkish citizens being pursued or detained can turn to it with a request for support.
  2. The OSCE needs to act, too. The “Human Dimension Committee” of the OSCE needs to concern itself with the human rights situation in Turkey as soon as possible. It needs to demand an immediate retraction of the blanket, list-based suspensions of judges and state prosecutors, the interference in the independence of the judiciary, and the violations of core human rights.
  3. The NATO Council, at the level of heads of state and government, has to arrange an extraordinary meeting as soon as possible to strongly remind Turkey of its democratic and constitutional obligations as a member of NATO. The 102 nuclear warheads currently stationed in Incirlik (Turkey) as part of NATO operations should be withdrawn immediately. All deliveries of weapons and armaments, as well as all financial transfers, to the Erdogan regime need to be suspended immediately.
  4. The Tornado squadron of the German air force should be withdrawn as soon as possible from its deployment in Incirlik.

 

Berlin, July 24/25 2016

 

[i] See, for example: (EN) http://www.reuters.com/article/us-turkey-media-erdogan-idUSKCN0W10E6 or (DE) http://www.faz.net/aktuell/politik/ausland/europa/tuerkei-lange-haftstrafen-fuer-regierungskritische-journalisten-14219395.html

[ii] http://www.auswaertiges-amt.de/EN/Infoservice/Presse/Meldungen/2016/160721_BM_Ausnahmezustand_T%C3%BCrkei.html?nn=479796

[iii] Art. 33 ECHR (Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms) – Inter-State cases: Any High Contracting Party may refer to the Court any alleged breach of the provisions of the Convention and the protocols thereto by another High Contracting Party.

 

IALANA, Marienstraße 19/20, 10117 Berlin, *protected email* www.ialana.de

If Russian Intelligence Did Hack the DNC, the NSA Would Know, Snowden Says

The Intercept - Engl. - Mar, 26/07/2016 - 18:43

As my colleague Glenn Greenwald told WNYC on Monday, while there may never be conclusive evidence that the Democratic National Committee was hacked by Russian intelligence operatives to extract the trove of embarrassing emails published by WikiLeaks, it would hardly be shocking if that was what happened.

“Governments do spy on each other and do try to influence events in other countries,” Glenn noted. “Certainly the U.S. government has a very long and successful history of doing exactly that.”

Even so, he added, given the ease with which we were misled into war in Iraq by false claims about weapons of mass destruction — and the long history of Russophobia in American politics — it is vital to cast a skeptical eye over whatever evidence is presented to support the claim, made by Hillary Clinton’s aide Robby Mook, that this is all part of a Russian plot to sabotage the Democrats and help Donald Trump win the election.

Clinton campaign manager on DNC leak: Experts say "Russians are releasing these emails" to help Trump #CNNSOTU https://t.co/GwJhloosPs

— CNN Politics (@CNNPolitics) July 24, 2016

The theory gained some traction, particularly among Trump’s detractors, in part because the candidate has seemed obsessed at times with reminding crowds that Russian President Vladimir Putin once said something sort of nice about him (though not, as Trump falsely claims, that the American is “a genius”). Then last week, Trump’s campaign staff watered down a pledge to help Ukraine defend its territory from Russian-backed rebels and the candidate told the New York Times he would not necessarily honor the NATO treaty commitment that requires the United States military to defend other member states from a direct attack by Russia.

Since Trump has refused to release his tax returns, there are also questions about whether or not his businesses might depend to some extent on Russian investors. “Russians make up a pretty disproportionate cross-section of a lot of our assets,” Trump’s son Donald Jr. told a real estate conference in 2008, the Washington Post reported last month. “We see a lot of money pouring in from Russia.”

Paul Manafort, who is directing Trump’s campaign and was for years a close adviser of a Putin ally, former President Viktor Yanukovych of Ukraine, called the theory that Trump’s campaign had ties to the Russian government “absurd.” (On Monday, Michael Isikoff of Yahoo News reported that a DNC researcher looking into Manafort’s ties to pro-Russian politicians in Ukraine in May had been warned that her personal Yahoo email account was under attack. “We strongly suspect that your account has been the target of state-sponsored actors,” the warning from the email service security team read.)

Unhelpfully for Trump, his most senior adviser with knowledge of the world of hacking, retired Lt. Gen. Michael T. Flynn, former director of the Defense Intelligence Agency, told Bloomberg View that he “would not be surprised at all” to learn that Russia was behind the breach of the DNC network. “Both China and Russia have the full capability to do this,” he said.

Since very few of us are cybersecurity experts, and the Iraq debacle is a reminder of how dangerous it can be to put blind faith in experts whose claims might reinforce our own political positions, there is also the question of who we can trust to provide reliable evidence.

One expert in the field, who is well aware of the evidence-gathering capabilities of the U.S. government, is Edward Snowden, the former Central Intelligence Agency technician and National Security Agency whistleblower who exposed the extent of mass surveillance and has been given temporary asylum in Russia.

“If Russia hacked the #DNC, they should be condemned for it,” Snowden wrote on Twitter on Monday, with a link to a 2015 report on the U.S. government’s response to the hacking of Sony Pictures. In that case, he noted, “the FBI presented evidence” for its conclusion that North Korea was responsible for the hacking and subsequent release of internal emails. (The FBI is now investigating the breach of the DNC’s network, which officials told the Daily Beast they first made the committee aware of in April.)

What’s more, Snowden added, the NSA has tools that should make it possible to trace the source of the hack. Even though the Director of National Intelligence usually opposes making such evidence public, he argued, this is a case in which the agency should do so, if only to discourage future attacks.

Evidence that could publicly attribute responsibility for the DNC hack certainly exists at #NSA, but DNI traditionally objects to sharing.

— Edward Snowden (@Snowden) July 25, 2016

Without a credible threat that USG can and will use #NSA capabilities to publicly attribute responsibility, such hacks will become common.

— Edward Snowden (@Snowden) July 25, 2016

To summarize: the US Intel Community should modernize their position on disclosure. Defensive capabilities should be aggressively public.

— Edward Snowden (@Snowden) July 25, 2016

Another former insider with knowledge of American and Russian intelligence capabilities, Michael McFaul, the U.S. ambassador to Russia from 2012 to 2014, agreed that it should be possible for the U.S. to present proof if Russia was, in fact, responsible for the attack.

I assume that the US counterintelligence agencies have been investigating Russian theft of DNC emails. Hope they tell us results soon.

— Michael McFaul (@McFaul) July 24, 2016

As U.S. voter, I'm appalled by Russian meddling, want it investigated & stopped. As long-time analyst of Russia, Im impressed; they're good

— Michael McFaul (@McFaul) July 24, 2016

While we wait to see if the NSA will take its most famous former employee’s advice, it is worth reading a thorough review of the evidence produced so far, compiled for Motherboard by Thomas Rid, a professor at King’s College London who has charted the use of hacking for espionage.

As Rid explains, the attribution of the DNC hack to Russian intelligence agents was first suggested on June 15 by CrowdStrike, the cybersecurity firm hired by the Democrats to investigate the possible breach of their system in May.

Last month, one of the firm’s founders, Dmitri Alperovitch, explained in a detailed technical analysis of their findings that CrowdStrike discovered “two separate Russian intelligence-affiliated adversaries present in the DNC network in May.”

The groups, he added, are so familiar to the investigators from previous attacks that they have acquired commonly used nicknames in the security industry. One, “Cozy Bear” or “APT 29,” had been inside the committee’s network for about a year; a second, “Fancy Bear,” also called “APT 28,” breached the system in April.

We’ve had lots of experience with both of these actors attempting to target our customers in the past and know them well. In fact, our team considers them some of the best adversaries out of all the numerous nation-state, criminal and hacktivist/terrorist groups we encounter on a daily basis. Their tradecraft is superb, operational security second to none and the extensive usage of “living-off-the-land” techniques enables them to easily bypass many security solutions they encounter. In particular, we identified advanced methods consistent with nation-state level capabilities including deliberate targeting and “access management” tradecraft — both groups were constantly going back into the environment to change out their implants, modify persistent methods, move to new Command & Control channels and perform other tasks to try to stay ahead of being detected.

Cozy Bear is the group that “successfully infiltrated the unclassified networks of the White House, State Department, and U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff” last year, Alperovitch noted. Fancy Bear, he added, has “been linked publicly to intrusions into the German Bundestag and France’s TV5 Monde TV station in April 2015.”

Readers with a high level of technical competence can parse the clues explained fully in Alperovitch’s blog post, but he also noted a surprising fact: that the two groups thought to be affiliated with rival Russian intelligence agencies — the successor to the Soviet-era KGB, known as the FSB, and the GRU, a military intelligence service — appeared unaware of each other’s activities.

“We have identified no collaboration between the two actors, or even an awareness of one by the other,” Alperovitch observed. “Instead, we observed the two Russian espionage groups compromise the same systems and engage separately in the theft of identical credentials.”

One day after this initial attribution of the attack to Russian intelligence was made public by CrowdStrike and the DNC, someone using the pseudonym Guccifer 2.0, in reference to the Romanian hacker who famously uncovered George W. Bush’s secret career as a painter of selfies, started publishing documents stolen from the committee’s servers on a WordPress blog set up that day, and taunting the security experts on Twitter.

Guccifer 2.0, who claims to be a Romanian who dislikes Russians, told my colleague Sam Biddle that he or she had carried out the attack with no help from anyone else, just to expose “all those illuminati that captured our world,” and had provided hacked documents to WikiLeaks.

However, several analysts pointed out that there is evidence in the metadata that copies of the DNC documents posted online by Guccifer 2.0, starting with an opposition research dossier on Trump, appear to have been processed on a computer with Russian language settings. Parsing the documents on Twitter, the blogger Davi Ottenheimer and an information security analyst who writes as @pwnallthethings pointed out that copies of the stolen documents uploaded to WordPress rendered the hacker’s username, Iron Felix, in Cyrillic characters, and gave error messages for links in Russian.

8) Lol. Russian #opsec fail. pic.twitter.com/NdxGJP5izS

— Pwn All The Things (@pwnallthethings) June 15, 2016

@pwnallthethings "error! invalid hyperlinks" in Russian… pic.twitter.com/T9jmLnNiKF

— (((davi – ??))) (@daviottenheimer) June 15, 2016

Doubts were also cast over Guccifer 2.0’s identity by his or her apparent lack of fluency in Romanian in an online chat with Lorenzo Franceschi-Bicchierai of Motherboard.

Despite Guccifer 2.0’s claims, CrowdStrike’s attribution to the previously known Russian groups was supported by subsequent research last month from two rival network security firms: Fidelis Cybersecurity and Mandiant.

“We performed an independent review of the malware and other data (filenames, file sizes, IP addresses) in order to validate and provide our perspective on the reporting done by CrowdStrike,” Michael Buratowski, a Fidelis senior vice president, explained in a detailed technical analysis. The firm’s conclusions supported the attribution to the two well-known Russian groups. Among other factors, Buratowski noted, “the malware samples were conspicuously large” and “contained all or most of their embedded dependencies and functional code.”

“This is a very specific modus operandi less sophisticated actors do not employ,” he argued.

A Mandiant researcher, Marshall Heilman, told the Washington Post he agreed that the malware and associated servers were consistent with those previously used by the two Russian groups.

The suspicion that the raid of the DNC servers might have been carried out by Russian intelligence was unsurprising to some experts, as Wired’s Andy Greenberg reported, given that the FBI warned both Barack Obama and John McCain in 2008 that their campaign computer systems had been breached by foreign hackers, most likely from Russia or China.

What makes the DNC breach new, however, is the fact that close to 20,000 emails and other documents — including personal information and credit card details of donors — were provided to WikiLeaks, which made them public on the eve of this week’s convention. Some of the private email traffic made public, which validated complaints from the Bernie Sanders campaign that the DNC officials favored Hillary Clinton, helped to reopen wounds from the bruising primary campaign.

Chants of "WikiLeaks" and "Lock her up" outside the DNC convention. pic.twitter.com/YksSfoWnKn

— Philip Crowther (@PhilipinDC) July 25, 2016

California Bernie delegates chanting "Wikileaks Wikileaks Wikileaks" pic.twitter.com/4wGOVYONCO

— Josh Barro (@jbarro) July 25, 2016

The role played by WikiLeaks, and the professed indifference of the group’s founder, Julian Assange, to the source of the hacked documents, caused some journalists to ask if the site had allowed itself to be used as part of a post-modern dirty trick, a sort of Watergate 2.0.

One reporter, James Surowiecki of the New Yorker, even mused about how WikiLeaks might have treated documents provided by the Watergate burglars had it been around in 1972 when the Republican operatives broke into the DNC office in that building, precisely to obtain damaging information about the party through theft and surveillance.

If WL had been around in '72, would it have published DNC documents Watergate burglars stole and transcripts from the bugs they planted?

— James Surowiecki (@JamesSurowiecki) July 24, 2016

Of course, many other reporters have taken the view that the material made public by WikiLeaks is clearly newsworthy, given that it helps expose the inner workings of a largely unaccountable private political party, which plays a central and privileged role in the election of America’s leaders. That is why an array of publications, including The Intercept, quickly started to provide reporting and analysis on what was revealed in the leaked documents.

Asked by NBC News on Monday if WikiLeaks might have been used to distribute documents stolen as part of a Russian intelligence operation, Assange insisted there was “no proof of that whatsoever — we have not disclosed our source, and of course this is a diversion that’s being pushed by the Hillary Clinton campaign.”

WATCH: No proof Russians used WikiLeaks in #DNCLeak, Julian Assange tells @RichardEngel on @NBCNightlyNews. https://t.co/UJCBe4fT9l

— NBC Nightly News (@NBCNightlyNews) July 25, 2016

Of course, given that a cornerstone of the WikiLeaks promise to sources is that the site was designed to receive material without revealing the identity of the leaker to anyone at the anti-secrecy group, it should be impossible for Assange himself to know that the hacked DNC documents did not come from a Russian intelligence operative — or, for that matter, a Republican one.

Convinced by the available evidence that the leak was orchestrated by Russian intelligence, Thomas Rid, the security analyst who writes for Motherboard, went so far as to suggest that by publishing these documents, WikiLeaks had become “a legitimate target” for counterintelligence operations by the five-nation club of the United States, Britain, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand.

23 June 2016, sadly, marks the day on which Wikileaks became a legitimate target for five-eyes (counter) intelligence operations.

— Thomas Rid (@RidT) July 24, 2016

Although WikiLeaks describes the hacked DNC emails as “part one of our new Hillary Leaks series,” Assange himself rejected the charge that he is helping in a partisan attack. “This is a quite a classical release,” he told Amy Goodman of “Democracy Now” on Monday, “showing the benefit of producing pristine data sets, presenting them before the public, where there’s equal access to all journalists and to interested members of the public to mine through them and have them in a citable form where they can then be used to prop up certain criticisms or political arguments.”

Assange demurred when Goodman asked if he preferred Trump over Clinton — “You’re asking me, do I prefer cholera or gonorrhea?” — but he was more forthright in an interview with Robert Peston of Britain’s ITV on June 12, two days before the DNC hack was first reported.

After telling Peston in that conversation, “We have emails relating to Hillary Clinton which are pending publication,” Assange was asked if his intention was to help Trump get elected. “Well, I think Trump is a completely unpredictable phenomenon. You can’t predict what he would do in office,” he replied. “From my personal perspective, well, you know, the emails we published show that Hillary Clinton is receiving constant updates about my personal situation; she has pushed for the prosecution of WikiLeaks, which is still in train. So, we do see her as a bit of a problem, for freedom of the press more generally.”

On Twitter, WikiLeaks has been more forthright about seeing the DNC emails and those from Clinton’s personal server — which the group copied from the State Department’s website to make into a searchable database — as material that can be used “to prop up certain criticisms” of the former secretary of state.

Hillary Clinton's showy rewarding of corruption by DWS is an ill wind for the corruption-overton-window of a future presidency.

— WikiLeaks (@wikileaks) July 24, 2016

Audience at DNC turns on Bernie Sanders after he says "we must elect Hillary Clinton" following #DNCLeak https://t.co/yJszgko2XK #DNCinPHL

— WikiLeaks (@wikileaks) July 25, 2016

Some of that criticism, however, has not been well-grounded in fact, leaving the organization open to accusations that, rather than serving as an impartial clearinghouse for leaks, annotated by its readers — like Wikipedia — it has evolved into a platform for analysis by a small circle of insiders.

To take one example, on Saturday, a WikiLeaks tweet incorrectly claimed that one email from the leak revealed that Luis Miranda, the DNC communications director, had suggested that Trump might have been right to say that Ted Cruz’s father was involved in the Kennedy assassination.

#DNCLeak: Trump may be right about Ted Cruz's father & JFK kill — Comms head Luis Miranda https://t.co/jjJV1ndJzM pic.twitter.com/UGbPNLutAE

— WikiLeaks (@wikileaks) July 23, 2016

Reading the email itself, however, shows something quite different. The complete text of the email chain makes it clear that Miranda was contributing to a thread in which officials worked together to edit a draft of a humorous press release, or “hit,” that mocked Trump for making such an outlandish suggestion.

While Miranda did write to his colleagues that Cruz’s father might have been part of an anti-Castro Cuban exile community “with questionable histories,” he also indicated that he approved the final text, which was posted online by the DNC that same day. That text put Trump’s claim about Cruz’s father at the top of a list of examples of “the GOP’s presumptive standard bearer just spouting nonsense he reads on the internet or in the tabloids.”

Here's the May 3 DNC press release mocking Trump for discussing conspiracy theories, like Cruz's father killing JFK pic.twitter.com/hiDBXO75hH

— Robert Mackey (@RobertMackey) July 26, 2016

While such errors in the annotation of the DNC documents look more like sloppiness than an attempt to intentionally mislead readers, the mistakes point to a weakness in the platform’s development — the lack of a robust system for correcting mistakes noted by readers, like the one used by Wikipedia.

That problem has also been noted in the way WikiLeaks presented emails from Hillary Clinton’s private server first released by the State Department.

In March, WikiLeaks was criticized by some Twitter followers — including David Kenner, the Middle East editor of Foreign Policy — for the confusing way it presented the text of a draft opinion article sent to Clinton by a friend as if it were the text of an email from her — and one that revealed her secret plan to destroy the Syrian government to help Israel.

Hillary Emails: Overthrow #Syrian government to help Israel https://t.co/e93JddH9nv #syria #iran #saudi pic.twitter.com/yZysFuOT2H

— WikiLeaks (@wikileaks) March 18, 2016

In fact, as the State Department’s website makes clear, that text was sent to Clinton as an attachment to a 2012 email from James Rubin, who served in Bill Clinton’s administration. Reading the email, Rubin attached his draft piece to make it clear that he hoped his essay — which was later published in slightly revised form by Foreign Policy — would convince the Obama administration to help Syrian rebels topple Bashar al-Assad largely to “forestall the biggest danger on the horizon, that Israel launches a surprise attack on Iran’s nuclear facilities.”

Rubin also made it clear in his email that he did not think Clinton shared his view of the situation at that time. “I know you may not agree,” he wrote, “but I thought it was better to share this with you first as at least a new way to look at the problem.”

Unfortunately, the way WikiLeaks described Rubin’s draft op-ed as one of “Hillary Emails” sowed confusion online and led to outraged blog posts and Russian news reports that mistakenly credited Assange’s group with revealing the text of a bombshell email from Clinton that offered insight into her thinking.

Despite concerns that the group’s own annotation of documents related to Clinton might be at times muddled, in his “Democracy Now” interview, Assange defended his decision not to “establish partnerships with the New York Times or the Washington Post,” as he has done in the past to ensure that leaked documents would come to light not only in raw form but also accompanied by some analysis from political or national security reporters.

Working with the editorial staffs of those newspapers on material like this “might be counterproductive,” Assange said, “because they are partisans of one group or another.”

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The post If Russian Intelligence Did Hack the DNC, the NSA Would Know, Snowden Says appeared first on The Intercept.

Öffentlicher Appell an die deutsche Bundesregierung sowie die Institutionen des Europarates, ...

Hintergrund.de - Mar, 26/07/2016 - 17:52

(26.07.2016/hg)

IALANA (International Association of Lawyers against Nuclear Arms) hat eine Stellungnahme zur Verhängung des Ausnahmezustandes in der Türkei abgegeben, die unter anderem an sämtliche Mitglieder des Bundestages versandt werden wird.  

Als das türkische Verfassungsgericht Ende Februar 2016 die angeordnete Untersuchungshaft gegen zwei Journalisten aufhob, die die Unterstützung militanter Islamisten in Syrien durch türkische Stellen aufgedeckt hatten, drohte der türkische Präsident Erdogan den Richtern: „Ich sage es offen und klar, ich akzeptiere das nicht und füge mich der Entscheidung nicht, ich respektiere sie auch nicht.“ (1) Dieser Drohung hat er jetzt Taten folgen lassen.

Als Vorwand dafür hat er den

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