April 18, 2012

States Continue Terror Campaign Against Whistleblowers And Dissidents

MSM: Tarek Mehanna Sentenced to 17 Yrs

Harry S. Truman“Once a government is committed to the principle of silencing the voice of opposition, it has only one way to go, and that is down the path of increasingly repressive measures, until it becomes a source of terror to all its citizens and creates a country where everyone lives in fear.”
― Harry S. Truman

Václav Havel“You do not become a ''dissident'' just because you decide one day to take up this most unusual career. You are thrown into it by your personal sense of responsibility, combined with a complex set of external circumstances. You are cast out of the existing structures and placed in a position of conflict with them. It begins as an attempt to do your work well, and ends with being branded an enemy of society.”
― Václav Havel

George Orwell“In a way, the world−view of the Party imposed itself most successfully on people incapable of understanding it. They could be made to accept the most flagrant violations of reality, because they never fully grasped the enormity of what was demanded of them, and were not sufficiently interested in public events to notice what was happening.”
― George Orwell, 1984

Dissenters under either Nazi Germany, Soviet Russia, or Red China in the 20th century were tried for undermining the State, and sentenced for espousing 'unapproved' views to lengthy terms behind bars. Decried by almost all nations in the 'free world', this tactic has made a comeback in the 21st century. Under the guise of fighting terrorism, dissenters against the practice of preemptively invading other countries are today being convicted for the simple act of exercising 'free speech' in emails to friends!

Knocking off shift at a local hospital four years ago Tarek Mehanna was approached by two federal agents and offered a deal he could not refuse - either become an FBI informant - or the full weight of the State would be brought to bear to put him away for a long time! But Tarek - who still possessed a conscience refused - for this he was hounded down and eventually convicted for emailing others with his views - not on advocating terrorism, but instead decrying the use of preemptive violence and war against Muslim countries. For downloading videos and sending emails, a 29-year old pharmacist with no prior record was sentenced to 17 years behind bars! In actuality the only real crime of this brave individual is to have disagreed with a barbarous State policy, and refused to become their informant!

Dictionary.com in fact defines terrorism as: "the use of violence and threats to intimidate or coerce, especially for political purposes." - it is akin to blackmail, but backed up by real or threatened force! There is now a pattern of abuse by the State against Muslims who are targeted and then prosecuted if they fail to 'play ball'! With two exceptions - every single terror plot since Y2K has been fabricated, facilitated and even funded by the FBI using Muslim informants in order to foment a climate of fear!

Yet the reality is that the horrific attacks of 9/11 were self-inflicted wounds perpetrated by the State and aided by a non-Muslim Middle-East country - a barbaric act of terrorism against its own citizens! Followed by its partner-in-crime across the 'pond' four years onward, these two diabolical false-flags have been used to justify the fraudulent ongoing War Of Terror across the planet in order to advance strategic interests - and at home to consolidate control by stripping a fearful population of its rights!

If you have ever spoken or written critically on State policies in the past or downloaded videos online you may wonder why you are different to Tarek Mehanna. Could you get an offer you can't refuse? Right now these 'offers' are confined mostly to Muslims, but as Harry Truman warned - a government committed to going down the path of silencing all voices of opposition grows increasingly repressive - becoming a source of terror to all of its citizens and creating a culture where everyone lives in fear!

In another fascist society not so very long ago the people also looked on in silence whilst their rights were stripped away one by one - as the State went after a minority religious group to 'protect' them - as I recall, that sorry chapter in our history didn't end too well for either that group or the onlookers! Those who believe free speech can be criminalized because it doesn't find favor with the ruling class will come to discover what the muted masses in Nazi Germany learned - and it won't be any prettier!

When rulers who claim to be waging a campaign to make us safer, by ridding the planet of terrorism legitimize the use of terror tactics by bombing defenseless populations - when those self-proclaimed champions of liberty support, train and fund known terrorist groups with whom they share a common enemy - when leaders of the 'free world' target their own countrymen for killing, indefinite detention and State oppression for espousing the 'wrong' views - their jihad is against not some, but all of us!

History repeats if we fail to learn from the past as one German girl recalled asking her grandmother: “How come nobody stopped what was happening with Hitler? How come they didn’t stop them from taking the Jews away?” This was her grandmother's reply: “You don’t understand - It wasn’t one day that we woke up and all of our rights were taken away from us. They took them away from us slowly. And then one day you couldn’t speak out because if you spoke out you were dead”. Are we there yet?

Make no mistake - war crimes are now committed on a daily basis by an out-of-control, rogue State! Agents and key leaders of today's great empire will one day be held to account, just as occurred with Nazi officers who were also unable to duck justice by claiming that they were 'only following orders'!

Meanwhile those looking on in muted silence while the temperature continues to be slowly increased while the human 'frogs' seem oblivious to their personal 'climate change', yet refuse to speak up and 'sound the alarm', will either become victims themselves or have to live with a damaged conscience!

True to form your controlled media declines to highlight the gross inequity of this draconian verdict! They have been a reliable collaborator in providing cover for growing tyranny by not doing their job! Fortunately, though, RT and the alternative media have done a creditable job in taking up the slack!


Tarek Mehanna – War Of Terror Casualty

The War on Terror has become the Orwellian War of Terror and there is no better example than Tarek Mehanna, a 29-year old pharmacist and America citizen from Sudbury, Massachusetts, who was recently sentenced to 17 years in prison for emailing friends, downloaded videos, translating and posting documents on the web, travelling to and from Yemen in 2004 for eight weeks and, get this, refusing to be an FBI informant.

by Allen L Roland

“They could be made to accept the most flagrant violations of reality, because they never fully grasped the enormity of what was demanded of them, and were not sufficiently interested in public events to notice what was happening.” – George Orwell
The charade of the War On Terror continues unabated for the rest of the world but it has rightfully become the War of Terror to millions of increasingly concerned Americans who are seeing their constitution and civil liberties disintegrate under the Obama administration ~ with no better example than the recent unjust case and conviction of Tarek Mehanna. See background details on the case.
The clearest defense of Tarek Mehanna’s actions came from Mehanna himself, in the following statement which he read during his sentencing, and which I hope you take the time to read in full ~ for it is indeed a clear explanation of the principles of self-defense, from an American perspective, and understandably from the perspective of a Muslim American. It was those principles that motivated Mehanna, principles which he refused to disown, even when trapped and betrayed by the FBI for the “crime” of refusing to become an informant ~ as he explained in this key passage from his statement:
“This trial was not about my position on Muslims killing American civilians. It was about my position on Americans killing Muslim civilians, which is that Muslims should defend their lands from foreign invaders ~ Soviets, Americans, or Martians. This is what I believe. It’s what I’ve always believed, and what I will always believe. This is not terrorism, and it’s not extremism. It’s the simple logic of self-defense.
Of course, the Main Stream Media would not touch this story but Russia Today, to their credit, did with this short video. Seven minute video
Tarek Mehanna’s full statement, read to Judge O’Toole during his sentencing, April 12, 2012 (With my bolded emphasis)
“ In the name of God the most gracious the most merciful,
Exactly four years ago this month I was finishing my work shift at a local hospital. As I was walking to my car I was approached by two federal agents. They said that I had a choice to make: I could do things the easy way, or I could do them the hard way. The “easy” way, as they explained, was that I would become an informant for the government, and if I did so I would never see the inside of a courtroom or a prison cell. As for the hard way, this is it. Here I am, having spent the majority of the four years since then in a solitary cell the size of a small closet, in which I am locked down for 23 hours each day. The FBI and these prosecutors worked very hard ~ and the government spent millions of tax dollars ~ to put me in that cell, keep me there, put me on trial, and finally to have me stand here before you today to be sentenced to even more time in a cell.
In the weeks leading up to this moment, many people have offered suggestions as to what I should say to you. Some said I should plead for mercy in hopes of a light sentence, while others suggested I would be hit hard either way. But what I want to do is just talk about myself for a few minutes.
When I refused to become an informant, the government responded by charging me with the “crime” of supporting the mujahideen fighting the occupation of Muslim countries around the world. Or as they like to call them, “terrorists.” I wasn’t born in a Muslim country, though. I was born and raised right here in America and this angers many people: how is it that I can be an American and believe the things I believe, take the positions I take? Everything a man is exposed to in his environment becomes an ingredient that shapes his outlook, and I’m no different. So, in more ways than one, it’s because of America that I am who I am.
When I was six, I began putting together a massive collection of comic books. Batman implanted a concept in my mind, introduced me to a paradigm as to how the world is set up: that there are oppressors, there are the oppressed, and there are those who step up to defend the oppressed. This resonated with me so much that throughout the rest of my childhood, I gravitated towards any book that reflected that paradigm ~ Uncle Tom’s Cabin, The Autobiography of Malcolm X, and I even saw an ethical dimension to The Catcher in the Rye.
By the time I began high school and took a real history class, I was learning just how real that paradigm is in the world. I learned about the Native Americans and what befell them at the hands of European settlers. I learned about how the descendants of those European settlers were in turn oppressed under the tyranny of King George III. I read about Paul Revere, Tom Paine, and how Americans began an armed insurgency against British forces ~ an insurgency we now celebrate as the American revolutionary war. As a kid I even went on school field trips just blocks away from where we sit now. I learned about Harriet Tubman, Nat Turner, John Brown, and the fight against slavery in this country. I learned about Emma Goldman, Eugene Debs, and the struggles of the labor unions, working class, and poor. I learned about Anne Frank, the Nazis, and how they persecuted minorities and imprisoned dissidents. I learned about Rosa Parks, Malcolm X, Martin Luther King, and the civil rights struggle. I learned about Ho Chi Minh, and how the Vietnamese fought for decades to liberate themselves from one invader after another. I learned about Nelson Mandela and the fight against apartheid in South Africa.
Everything I learned in those years confirmed what I was beginning to learn when I was six: that throughout history, there has been a constant struggle between the oppressed and their oppressors. With each struggle I learned about, I found myself consistently siding with the oppressed, and consistently respecting those who stepped up to defend them ~ regardless of nationality, regardless of religion. And I never threw my class notes away. As I stand here speaking, they are in a neat pile in my bedroom closet at home.
From all the historical figures I learned about, one stood out above the rest. I was impressed by many things about Malcolm X, but above all, I was fascinated by the idea of transformation, his transformation. I don’t know if you’ve seen the movie “X” by Spike Lee, it’s over three and a half hours long, and the Malcolm at the beginning is different from the Malcolm at the end. He starts off as an illiterate criminal, but ends up a husband, a father, a protective and eloquent leader for his people, a disciplined Muslim performing the Hajj in Makkah, and finally, a martyr.
Malcolm’s life taught me that Islam is not something inherited; it’s not a culture or ethnicity. It’s a way of life, a state of mind anyone can choose no matter where they come from or how they were raised. This led me to look deeper into Islam, and I was hooked. I was just a teenager, but Islam answered the question that the greatest scientific minds were clueless about, the question that drives the rich & famous to depression and suicide from being unable to answer: what is the purpose of life? Why do we exist in this Universe? But it also answered the question of how we’re supposed to exist. And since there’s no hierarchy or priesthood, I could directly and immediately begin digging into the texts of the Qur’an and the teachings of Prophet Muhammad, to begin the journey of understanding what this was all about, the implications of Islam for me as a human being, as an individual, for the people around me, for the world; and the more I learned, the more I valued Islam like a piece of gold. This was when I was a teen, but even today, despite the pressures of the last few years, I stand here before you, and everyone else in this courtroom, as a very proud Muslim.
With that, my attention turned to what was happening to other Muslims in different parts of the world. And everywhere I looked, I saw the powers that be trying to destroy what I loved. I learned what the Soviets had done to the Muslims of Afghanistan. I learned what the Serbs had done to the Muslims of Bosnia. I learned what the Russians were doing to the Muslims of Chechnya. I learned what Israel had done in Lebanon ~ and what it continues to do in Palestine ~ with the full backing of the United States. And I learned what America itself was doing to Muslims.
I learned about the Gulf War and the depleted uranium bombs that killed thousands and caused cancer rates to skyrocket across Iraq. I learned about the American-led sanctions that prevented food, medicine, and medical equipment from entering Iraq, and how ~ according to the United Nations ~ over half a million children perished as a result. I remember a clip from a ’60 Minutes’ interview of Madeline Albright where she expressed her view that these dead children were “worth it.” I watched on September 11th as a group of people felt driven to hijack airplanes and fly them into buildings from their outrage at the deaths of these children. I watched as America then attacked and invaded Iraq directly. I saw the effects of ‘Shock & Awe’ in the opening day of the invasion — the children in hospital wards with shrapnel from American missiles sticking out of their foreheads (of course, none of this was shown on CNN). I learned about the town of Haditha, where 24 Muslims ~ including a 76-year old man in a wheelchair, women, and even toddlers ~ were shot up and blown up in their bedclothes as they slept by US Marines. I learned about Abeer al-Janabi, a fourteen-year old Iraqi girl gang-raped by five American soldiers, who then shot her and her family in the head, then set fire to their corpses.
I just want to point out, as you can see; Muslim women don’t even show their hair to unrelated men. So try to imagine this young girl from a conservative village with her dress torn off, being sexually assaulted by not one, not two, not three, not four, but five soldiers. Even today, as I sit in my jail cell, I read about the drone strikes which continue to kill Muslims daily in places like Pakistan, Somalia, and Yemen. Just last month, we all heard about the seventeen Afghan Muslims ~ mostly mothers and their kids ~ shot to death by an American soldier, who also set fire to their corpses. These are just the stories that make it to the headlines, but one of the first concepts I learned in Islam is that of loyalty, of brotherhood ~ that each Muslim woman is my sister, each man is my brother, and together, we are one large body who must protect each other. In other words, I couldn’t see these things beings done to my brothers & sisters ~ including by America ~ and remain neutral. My sympathy for the oppressed continued, but was now more personal, as was my respect for those defending them.
I mentioned Paul Revere ~ when he went on his midnight ride, it was for the purpose of warning the people that the British were marching to Lexington to arrest Sam Adams and John Hancock, then on to Concord to confiscate the weapons stored there by the Minuteman. By the time they got to Concord, they found the Minuteman waiting for them, weapons in hand. They fired at the British, fought them, and beat them. From that battle came the American Revolution. There’s an Arabic word to describe what those Minutemen did that day. That word is: JIHAD, and this is what my trial was about.
All those videos and translations and childish bickering over ‘Oh, he translated this paragraph’ and ‘Oh, he edited that sentence,’ and all those exhibits revolved around a single issue: Muslims who were defending themselves against American soldiers doing to them exactly what the British did to America. It was made crystal clear at trial that I never, ever plotted to “kill Americans” at shopping malls or whatever the story was. The government’s own witnesses contradicted this claim, and we put expert after expert up on that stand, who spent hours dissecting my every written word, who explained my beliefs. Further, when I was free, the government sent an undercover agent to prod me into one of their little “terror plots,” but I refused to participate. Mysteriously, however, the jury never heard this.
So, this trial was not about my position on Muslims killing American civilians. It was about my position on Americans killing Muslim civilians, which is that Muslims should defend their lands from foreign invaders ~ Soviets, Americans, or Martians. This is what I believe. It’s what I’ve always believed, and what I will always believe. This is not terrorism, and it’s not extremism. It’s the simple logic of self-defense. It’s what the arrows on that seal above your head represent: defense of the homeland. So, I disagree with my lawyers when they say that you don’t have to agree with my beliefs ~ no. Anyone with common sense and humanity has no choice but to agree with me. If someone breaks into your home to rob you and harm your family, logic dictates that you do whatever it takes to expel that invader from your home. But when that home is a Muslim land and that invader is the US military, for some reason the standards suddenly change. Common sense is renamed “terrorism” and the people defending themselves against those who come to kill them from across the ocean become “the terrorists” who are “killing Americans.”
The mentality that America was victimized with when British soldiers walked these streets 2 ½ centuries ago is the same mentality Muslims are victimized by as American soldiers walk their streets today. It’s the mentality of colonialism. When Sgt. Bales shot those Afghans to death last month, all of the focus in the media was on him ~ his life, his stress, his PTSD, the mortgage on his home ~ as if he was the victim. Very little sympathy was expressed for the people he actually killed, as if they’re not real, they’re not humans. Unfortunately, this mentality trickles down to everyone in society, whether or not they realize it. Even with my lawyers, it took nearly two years of discussing, explaining, and clarifying before they were finally able to think outside the box and at least ostensibly accept the logic in what I was saying. Two years! If it took that long for people so intelligent, whose job it is to defend me, to de-program themselves, then to throw me in front of a randomly selected jury under the premise that they’re my “impartial peers,” I mean, come on. I wasn’t tried before a jury of my peers because with the mentality gripping America today, I have no peers. Counting on this fact, the government prosecuted me ~ not because they needed to, but simply because they could.
I learned one more thing in history class: America has historically supported the most unjust policies against its minorities ~ practices that were even protected by the law ~ only to look back later and ask: ‘what were we thinking?’ Slavery, Jim Crow, the internment of the Japanese during World War II ~ each was widely accepted by American society, each was defended by the Supreme Court. But as time passed and America changed, both people and courts looked back and asked ‘What were we thinking?’ Nelson Mandela was considered a terrorist by the South African government, and given a life sentence. But time passed, the world changed, they realized how oppressive their policies were, that it was not he who was the terrorist, and they released him from prison. He even became president. So, everything is subjective ~ even this whole business of “terrorism” and who is a “terrorist.” It all depends on the time and place and who the superpower happens to be at the moment.
In your eyes, I’m a terrorist, I’m the only one standing here in an orange jumpsuit and it’s perfectly reasonable that I be standing here in an orange jumpsuit. But one day, America will change and people will recognize this day for what it is. They will look at how hundreds of thousands of Muslims were killed and maimed by the US military in foreign countries, yet somehow I’m the one going to prison for “conspiring to kill and maim” in those countries ~ because I support the Mujahidin defending those people. They will look back on how the government spent millions of dollars to imprison me as a “terrorist,” yet if we were to somehow bring Abeer al-Janabi back to life in the moment she was being gang-raped by your soldiers, to put her on that witness stand and ask her who the “terrorists” are, she sure wouldn’t be pointing at me.
The government says that I was obsessed with violence, obsessed with “killing Americans.” But, as a Muslim living in these times, I can think of a lie no more ironic.”
Tarek Mehanna
The incredible fact about Tarek Mehanna’s statement of truth is that it could have been written, almost word for word, by many American online columnists, including me, who have been saying virtually the same thing about America’s illegal War Of Terror for several years ~ but who are now in danger, with the passage of the National Defense Authorization Act of 2012 (NDAA), of experiencing the same fate as Mehanna and most likely without due process. It is increasingly apparent that Nobel Peace Prize Laureate President Obama will eventually go down in US history as the first American president to enshrine indefinite detention without legal due process.
Finally, as Roqayah Chamseddine writes in ICH ~ The Tarek Mehanna case confirms that Muslims remain the chief targets of the U.S. government’s ongoing, farcical “war on terror” but even more, the verdict in the Mehanna case threatens web surfers, writers, teachers, students, journalists and even academic researchers.” This case has made it possible for citizens of the United States of America, from all walks of life, to be charged with thought-crimes. As such, Orwellian conditions, described as being hallmarks of an oppressive State, are now right here at our front door.
Truth has no special time of its own. It’s hour is now ~ always and indeed then most truly when it seems unsuitable to actual circumstances: Albert Schweitzer

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