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Forum Post: Chris Hedges Dives into the FBI docs released on Occupy

Posted 6 years ago on Jan. 7, 2013, 12:05 p.m. EST by TrevorMnemonic (5827)
This content is user submitted and not an official statement


By Chris Hedges

Shannon McLeish of Florida is a 45-year-old married mother of two young children. She is a homeowner, a taxpayer and a safe driver. She votes in every election. She attends a Unitarian Universalist church on Sundays. She is also, like nearly all who have a relationship with the Occupy movement in the United States, being monitored by the federal government. She knows this because when she read FBI documents obtained by the Partnership for Civil Justice Fund (PCJF) through the Freedom of Information Act, she was startled to see a redaction that could only be referring to her. McLeish’s story is the story of hundreds of thousands of people—perhaps more—whose lives are being invaded by the state. It is the story of a security and surveillance apparatus—overseen by the executive branch under Barack Obama—that has empowered the FBI and the Department of Homeland Security to silence the voices and obstruct the activity of citizens who question corporate power.

Mara Verheyden-Hilliard, executive director of the PCJF, said in a written statement about the released files: “This production [of information], which we believe is just the tip of the iceberg, is a window into the nationwide scope of the FBI’s surveillance, monitoring, and reporting on peaceful protesters organizing with the Occupy movement. These documents show that the FBI and the Department of Homeland Security are treating protests against the corporate and banking structure of America as potential criminal and terrorist activity. These documents also show these federal agencies functioning as a de facto intelligence arm of Wall Street and Corporate America.”

The FBI documents are not only a chilling example of how widespread this surveillance and obstruction has become, they are an explicit warning by the security services to all who consider dissent. Anyone who defies corporate power, even if he or she is nonviolent and acting within constitutional rights, is a suspect. These documents are part of the plan to make us fearful, compliant and disempowered. They mark, I suspect, a government attempt to end peaceful mass protests by responding with repression to the grievances of Americans. When the corporate-financed group FreedomWorks bused in goons to disrupt Democratic candidates’ town hall meetings about the federal health care legislation in August 2009, Eric Zuesse of the Business Insider notes, “there was no FBI surveillance of those corporate-organized disruptions of legitimate democratic processes. There also were no subsequent FreedomWorks applications for Freedom of Information Act releases of FBI files regarding such surveillance being used against them—because there was no such FBI campaign against them.”

The combination of intimidation tactics by right-wing fringe groups, which speak in the language of violence and hate, with the state’s massive intrusion into the personal affairs of the citizen is corporate fascism. And we are much farther down that road than many of us care to admit.

“When activists took up relatively long-term residence in Zuccotti Park in New York City on Sept. 17 [in 2011], their message of outrage was a mirror to my own after we bailed out the banks with our tax dollars, then watched them get off scot-free without even a token attempt to help fix the wreckage they’d created,” McLeish told me over the phone when I called her home. “I personally lost considerable income and my retirement with the economic collapse, as well as more than half the value of my home. I could see the people around me struggling, too. I have friends, neighbors and family members that the banks refused to help, who lost their homes or were forced to pay for costly attorneys to defend themselves against fraudulent foreclosure attempts. People couldn’t sell their homes, as they were worth so much less than what they’d paid for them. Homes all over the area, including in my neighborhood right near the downtown [of Ormond Beach, Fla.], were abandoned due to the foreclosure crisis—and left to rot by the banks. Strip malls were emptied as businesses went bankrupt and closed their doors. More and more homeless people were wandering through the neighborhood—people you could tell had never been homeless, just by virtue of what and how much they carried with them. Families were sleeping behind big-box stores, and my area was featured on national news repeatedly for the number of homeless families.”

“These are some of the things that prompted me to create a Facebook page for Occupy in my area in solidarity with the courageous activists camping in Zuccotti—the only group to fully give voice to what I saw as the issue: the corruption of pretty much everything from the economy to the environment to our social safety nets to our democratic system of governance due to corporate greed,” she said. “The message of OWS [Occupy Wall Street] resonated deeply and moved me to action.” The FBI documents obtained by the PCJF show that government security services began to monitor the activities of Occupy activists before the Zuccotti Park encampment was established. They revealed that when McLeish met with about 40 other activists in Daytona Beach, Fla., several undercover law enforcement officers were present.

Page 1 of 2 - read more here - http://www.truthdig.com/report/item/state_of_fear_20130107



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[-] 9 points by FawkesNews (1290) 6 years ago

This is not a joke.

[-] 1 points by therising (6643) 6 years ago

We are getting into serious territory now. Our unity and our resolve ought to rise alongside our frustration and anger. We should alchemize the raw energy of our frustration and anger into strategic nonviolent action, whether it's speaking the truth calmly and kindly to someone who doesn't see any alternative to austerity or engaging in nonviolent direct action (strikes, sit ins, walk outs, boycotts, blockades, street theater, occupying space or any other type of nonviolent action). I agree with your prior recommendation of also engaging in the revolutionary act of LISTENING to others who are speaking up, giving them the attention and room to speak their mind so they get comfortable with such a revolutionary act of speaking up.

Fear and anger lead people often to the wrong conclusions. We have to help people take a step back from the programming of the 7 corporations that own mainstream media so ey can see "terrorism security", "austerity" and other shock doctrine related phenomenons for what they are: control. Monte we feel comfortable and confident in our own minds, we are truly free. Once we are truly free, we realize that unity of free minded people represents power, an unstoppable force.

"And now we lay our case before the world [publicized via direct action]. Whether we win or whether we die, freedom will rise here like the sun through the morning clouds."

  • Breyton Breytonbach before being sentenced to prison for his protest activities in South Africa.

WE HAVE THE POWER (using direct action and web in tandem):  http://occupywallst.org/forum/we-dont-see-the-power-we-have-in-our-hands-to-tran/

The Emperor and his Clothes: HOW ONE PERSON RAISING THEIR VOICE TO SPEAK THE TRUTH CAN MAKE A REAL DIFFERENCE -- the tenor of the times---   http://occupywallst.org/forum/we-have-the-power-to-turn-this-world-around-this-o/



[-] 4 points by FawkesNews (1290) 6 years ago

Serious territory indeed. This is global and it is spreading. Expect resistance.

The power of "listening" is of the utmost importance and it will never be thwarted. It cannot. I am grateful to you for sharing that very simple fact so well, so often and with so many. Your eloquence is astounding, appreciated and respected across the board. The patience to continue is tantamount to it's success.

The reduction of media outlets to such a limited few only exposes the desperate nature they share with one another. Feeling confident and comfortable are not attributes expressed by the media. They are expressed by the people, the populous, you and I. That is the realization and the expression of freedom. It is indeed unstoppable.

Breytonbach and many others saw further from the shoulders of giants as we see further from their shoulders.

[-] 3 points by therising (6643) 6 years ago

Beautifully said. It's happening. You can feel the power of this in your bones as we encounter more and more people understanding what's really going on and speaking up about it in formal and informal context. The revolution really is happening as we speak. We are riding the wave of major historical transformation right now. How fortunate we are to be here in this time and place to participate in this momentous transition. Thank you for all the encouragement and all the good things you are doing on this forum and beyond.

[-] 2 points by FawkesNews (1290) 6 years ago

“The supreme art of war is to subdue the enemy without fighting.” ...Sun Tzu

The feeling in the bones is undeniable. When others feel it, it resonates further. Every day more people become aware and they speak aloud about that awareness. We are experiencing a ride on a wave so large that failure brings catastrophe. We must participate. Thank you for your encouragement. It is not unnoticed, nor unappreciated.

[-] 2 points by therising (6643) 6 years ago

It is very much like surfing a very big wave. This one will take us all the way into shore if we relax into it and don't fall. We can't resist it. We need to relax into it, become one with this tremendous force. We just happen to be in the water of life at a time when the waves are enormous. It is a momentous time. A risky time. But with that danger also comes the potential for great reward if we ride the wave well and help others do the same.

How would any good surfing instructor teach a student? My guess is that they'd teach good basic mechanics but there would be much more to it than that. I think a good surfing teacher would do much like a good zen master, helping the student uncover the knowledge, the capacity and the wisdom that is already within them.

We know instinctually how to ride this momentous wave of history. We just have to get comfortable with acting on what we already know.

[-] 1 points by FawkesNews (1290) 6 years ago

We were indeed in the water when these sets rolled in. It would be very hard for someone to paddle out now. What we do here will be seen and will have a lasting impact on all those observing it. Just do the best you can and enjoy the ride because it will never come again.

[-] 2 points by therising (6643) 6 years ago

Beautifully said. I think you're exactly right. Momentous times. We the people need to rise to the occasion. This is our chance to shine. This is our one shot in this lifetime. The waves will never be like this again, at least for us.

[-] 5 points by TrevorMnemonic (5827) 6 years ago

if only the FBI would go after those committing fraudulent and criminals acts... like the big banks, HSBC, Goldman Sachs, Wells Fargo, Bank of America etc....

[-] 1 points by mideast (506) 6 years ago

We can continue to complain about corporate crime - but it would give us much more credibility if we state the exact statute.
Just because we hate what they are doing, does not make it criminal.
IF IT IS NOT - we must work to elect people who will make it illegal - like Warren & Sanders

We have seen many states do everything possible to restrict the voting rights of American citizens. They cannot win elections with ideas, so they use manipulation.

providing inadequate numbers of voting machines
purging voting rolls
restricting voting hours
voter ID requirements
cutting early voting

Just like the civil rights movement, we must solve this at the FEDERAL level with NATIONAL laws that will void the anti-citizen anti-voting state laws.

These existing federal laws may prove useful ( slightly edited ):

Title 18 US Code - Section 241: Conspiracy against rights
If two or more persons conspire to injure, oppress, threaten, or intimidate any person in the free exercise or enjoyment of any right or privilege secured to him by the Constitution or laws of the United States they shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than ten years, or both.

Title 18 US Code - Section 242: Deprivation of rights under color of law
Whoever, under color of any law, statute, ordinance, regulation, or custom, willfully subjects any person to the deprivation of any rights, privileges, or immunities secured or protected by the Constitution or laws of the United States shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than one year, or both.

[-] 1 points by TrevorMnemonic (5827) 6 years ago

laundering billions for drug cartels is criminal. Such that of HSBC.


Would you like to know more?

They got let off the hook, not because they didn't break any laws, but because the justice system is corrupt.

[-] 2 points by quantumystic (1710) from Memphis, TN 6 years ago

drug cartels??? ha ha ha that's nothing these guys actually helped fund 9-11 they never mention that hardly ever. this is the very bank and these are the very people realize that mother fuckers and feel the rage!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

[-] 0 points by TrevorMnemonic (5827) 6 years ago

Very true.

"HSBC linked to drug lords and terrorists, Senate report alleges"



HSBC and these banks are criminal to the core.

[-] 1 points by quantumystic (1710) from Memphis, TN 6 years ago


[-] 1 points by mideast (506) 6 years ago

thanq for that
Taibbi is a great resorce

[-] 1 points by peacehurricane (293) 6 years ago

Once in a time upon discovery of how the universe operates it came to f. something I and B ignore that you wish away because saying it makes it and you are as it to me...

[-] 1 points by mideast (506) 6 years ago

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[-] 1 points by gsw (3224) from Woodbridge Township, NJ 6 years ago

I believe this to be a robot generated troll whatever that means

Thread: No amount of corrupt power can ever remove this...... [-] 1 points by peacehurricane (51) 37 minutes ago Let us speak for ourselves about harming others it is not reasonable talk, did you mean wanting your tongue cut out? It would be far simpler to just shut it up for a minute- this to shall pass and we can keep from you our tongues Lovin' you with tongue


[-] 0 points by beautifulworld (22821) 6 years ago

You said it all right there, Trevor.

[-] 3 points by TrevorMnemonic (5827) 6 years ago

why are people stalking/downvoting you? I noticed it happened all over another post yesterday too.

These trolls shall not pass!

[-] 2 points by beautifulworld (22821) 6 years ago

Scared of the message, I think. Never give up! Occupy Wall Street!

[-] 4 points by TrevorMnemonic (5827) 6 years ago

These documents show that the FBI and the Department of Homeland Security are treating protests against the corporate and banking structure of America as potential criminal and terrorist activity.

[-] 4 points by shadz66 (19985) 6 years ago

FBI Documents Reveal Secret Nationwide Occupy Monitoring. See the released documents here :

Thanx for posting this powerful piece by Chris Hedges, warrior for The 99%. Solidarity Trevor. Also see :

e tenebris, lux ...

[-] 2 points by jph (2652) 6 years ago

power trembles with fear at people engaged and acting in concert.

[-] 1 points by therising (6643) 6 years ago

This is a great post. Thanks for spreading the word on this.

[-] 1 points by quantumystic (1710) from Memphis, TN 6 years ago

tyranny beyond your worst nightmares is just around the corner.