A report accidentally published on the Internet provides insight into a secretive European Union surveillance project designed to monitor its citizens, as reported by Wikileaks earlier this month. Project INDECT aims to mine data from television, internet traffic, cellphone conversations, p2p file sharing and a range of other sources for crime prevention and threat prediction. The €14.68 million project began in January, 2009, and is scheduled to continue for five years under its current mandate.
INDECT produced the accidentally published report as part of their “Extraction of Information for Crime Prevention by Combining Web Derived Knowledge and Unstructured Data” project, but do not enumerate all potential applications of the search and surveillance technology. Police are discussed as a prime example of users, with Polish and British forces detailed as active project participants. INDECT is funded under the European Commission’s Seventh Framework Programme (FP7), and includes participation from Austria, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, France, Germany, Hungary, Poland, Slovakia, Spain, and the United Kingdom.
Testing Project INDECT’s potential usefulness, and the leaked ‘sales-pitch’
Indicated in the initial trial’s report, the scope of data collected is particularly broad; days of television news, radio, newspapers, and recorded telephone conversations are included. Several weeks of content from online sources were agglomerated, including mining Wikipedia for users’ and article subjects’ relations with others, organizations, and in-project movements.
Watermarking of published digital works such as film, audio, or other documents is discussed in the Project INDECT remit; its purpose is to integrate and track this information, its movement within the system and across the Internet. An unreleased promotional video for INDECT located on YouTube is shown to the right. The simplified example of the system in operation shows a file of documents with a visible INDECT-titled cover taken from an office and exchanged in a car park. How the police are alerted to the document theft is unclear in the video; as a “threat”, it would be the INDECT system’s job to predict it.
Throughout the video use of CCTV equipment, facial recognition, number plate reading, and aerial surveillance give friend-or-foe information with an overlaid map to authorities. The police proactively use this information to coordinate locating, pursuing, and capturing the document recipient. The file of documents is retrieved, and the recipient roughly detained.
Conclusions, implications, potential investigative journalism impact
Technology research performed as part of Project INDECT has clear use in countering industrial and international espionage, although the potential use in maintaining any security and predicting leaks is much broader. Quoted in the UK’s Daily Telegraph, Liberty‘s director, Shami Chakrabarti, described a possible future implementation of INDECT as a “sinister step” with “positively chilling” repercussions Europe-wide.
“It is inevitable that the project has a sensitive dimension due to the security focused goals of the project,” Suresh Manandhar, leader of the University of York researchers involved in the “Work Package 4″ INDECT component, responded to Wikinews. “However, it is important to bear in mind that the scientific methods are much more general and has wider applications. The project will most likely have lot of commercial potential. The project has an Ethics board to oversee the project activities. As a responsible scientists [sic] it is of utmost importance to us that we conform to ethical guidelines.”
Although Wikinews attempted to contact Professor Helen Petrie of York University, the local member of Project INDECT’s Ethics board, no response was forthcoming. The professor’s area of expertise is universal access, and she has authored a variety of papers on web-accessibility for blind and disabled users. A full list of the Ethics board members is unavailable, making their suitability unassessable and distancing them from public accountability.
One potential application of Project INDECT would be implementation and enforcement of the U.K.’s “MoD Manual of Security“. The 2,389-page 2001 version passed to Wikileaks this month — commonly known as JSP-440, and marked “RESTRICTED” — goes into considerable detail on how, as a serious threat, investigative journalists should be monitored, and effectively thwarted; just the scenario the Project INDECT video could be portraying.
When approached by Wikinews about the implications of using INDECT, a representative of the U.K.’s Attorney General declined to comment on legal checks and balances such a system might require. Further U.K. enquiries were eventually referred to the Police Service of Northern Ireland, who have not yet responded.
E.F.F. Europe reacts
Wikinews’ Brian McNeil contacted Eddan Katz, the International Affairs Director for the Electronic Frontier Foundation (E.F.F.). Katz last spoke to Wikinews in early 2008 on copyright, not long after taking his current position with the E.F.F. He was back in Brussels to speak to EU officials, Project INDECT was on his agenda too — having learned of it only two weeks earlier. Katz linked Project INDECT with a September report, NeoConopticon — The EU Security-Industrial Complex, authored by Ben Hayes for the Transnational Institute. The report raises serious questions about the heavy involvement of defense and IT companies in “security research”.
On the record, Katz answered a few questions for Wikinews.
- Eddan Katz When the European Parliament issued the September 5, 2001 report on the American ECHELON system they knew such an infrastructure is in violation of data protection law, undermines the values of privacy and is the first step towards a totalitarian surveillance information society.
- E.K. What’s concerning to such a large extent is the fact that the projects seem to be agnostic to that question. These are the searching systems and those people that are working on it in these research labs do search technology anyway. [...] but its inclusion in a database and its availability to law enforcement and its simultaneity of application that’s so concerning, [...] because the people who built it aren’t thinking about those questions, and the social questions, and the political questions, and all this kind of stuff. [... It] seems like it’s intransparent, unaccountable.
The E.U. report Katz refers to was ratified just six days before the September 11 attacks that brought down the twin towers of the World Trade Center. In their analysis of the never-officially-recognized U.S. Echelon spy system it states, “[i]n principle, activities and measures undertaken for the purposes of state security or law enforcement do not fall within the scope of the EC Treaty.” On privacy and data-protection legislation enacted at E.U. level it comments, “[such does] not apply to ‘the processing of data/activities concerning public security, defense, state security (including the economic well-being of the state when the activities relate to state security matters) and the activities of the state in areas of criminal law’”.
Part of the remit in their analysis of Echelon was rumors of ‘commercial abuse’ of intelligence; “[i]f a Member State were to promote the use of an interception system, which was also used for industrial espionage, by allowing its own intelligence service to operate such a system or by giving foreign intelligence services access to its territory for this purpose, it would undoubtedly constitute a breach of EC law [...] activities of this kind would be fundamentally at odds with the concept of a common market underpinning the EC Treaty, as it would amount to a distortion of competition”.
Ben Hayes’ NeoConoptiocon report, in a concluding section, “Following the money“, states, “[w]hat is happening in practice is that multinational corporations are using the ESRP [European Seventh Research Programme] to promote their own profit-driven agendas, while the EU is using the programme to further its own security and defense policy objectives. As suggested from the outset of this report, the kind of security described above represents a marriage of unchecked police powers and unbridled capitalism, at the expense of the democratic system.
By James L. Lambert
During last month’s MTV music video awards ceremony, actor Jack Black urged the audience join hands and pray to “dear dark lord Satan.” In his prayer, the actor prayed that the musicians and nominees would have “continued success in the music industry.” The awards program was broadcasted on the MTV network (a subsidiary of the Viacom Corporation) throughout the country through cable and satellite television.
The Radio City Hall audience readily acquiesced to Black’s invitation to pray to the devil. In a video posted on YouTube, Black encouraged the large audience to join in by saying, “let me see those horns.” Black, dressed in a “muscle suit” continued by asking the awards ceremony audience to join hands during “the prayer.” He then held hands with actress Leighton Meester while he prayed aloud.
Black’s prayer went basically unnoticed among most conservative and Christian media circles — perhaps because they feel the comedian was simply joking as he displayed his contempt for Christianity with the prayer invocation. In fact, this would be in keeping with Black’s previous behavior.
In 2008 he participated in a video that mocked supporters of California’s marriage initiative, Proposition 8. In commenting on that video, the Culture and Media Institute (CMI) said Black “appears as Jesus rebuking the Proposition 8 supporters while munching on a shrimp cocktail and saying that the Bible condemns eating shellfish too. Then he [Black] reels off some scripture references without context to suggest that the Bible is self-contradictory and unreliable.” In their press release (December 4, 2008), CMI described Black as “an anti-Christian bigot.”
But regardless how one looks at Black’s actions, it sets a dangerous precedent. Author and King’s College professor Paul McGuire labels Black’s prayer to Satan as “just the tip of the iceberg of what is happening in our nation and in the entertainment industry.” The conservative commentator contends that “although it is hidden, Satanism is one of the fastest growing religions in America.” He adds: “We can expect to see Satanists demanding and getting the same rights as any other religion.”
Former Hollywood actor Bob Turnbull says Black’s prayer to the “dark side” was “pathetic and sick,” which shows a “heartbreakingly sad” side of Hollywood’s culture. Turnbull, also known as the “Chaplain of Waikiki,” knows a little something about Hollywood. In the ’60s and ’70s, he appeared in a number of well-known movies (The Little People, Camelot, Tora Tora Tora) and television shows (Hawaii Five-0, Petticoat Junction, My Three Sons, Bob Hope Chrysler Theater, Another Life).
Phil Magnan, director of BFamilyAdvocates.com, chimes in, wondering if Black “really knows what he is invoking or has any idea how destructive Satanism really is.”
Radio talk-show host Jesse Lee Peterson has a different take on Black’s prayer. Peterson is instead at odds with MTV, the network that hosts the awards. He says it is “disturbing that MTV continues to promote the most degenerate and base programs on its network….[They] intentionally air programming designed to seduce and corrupt the minds and hearts of America’s youth” (like Sex…with Mom and Dad, among others).
Ultimately, McGuire believes there could be some encouraging signs to come. While he affirms his belief that the level of darkness will continue, the Christian author strongly believes that simultaneously Americans will “see a revival among the youth similar to the Jesus Movement in the ’70s.”
By JOSIAH DANIEL RYAN
A popular Hamas children’s program that usually gives advice to youngsters, such as instructing them to listen to their parents, aired a call for the “slaughter” of Jews in Israel late last month, according to Palestinian Media Watch.
All Jews must be “erased from our land,” Nassur, a stuffed bear who hosts the weekly program, Tomorrow’s Pioneers, on Hamas’s Al-Aksa television, explained to a child who called in to a September 22 show. “We want to slaughter them, Saraa, so they will be expelled from our land… we’ll have to [do it] by slaughter.”
Nan Jacques Zilberdik, an analyst at Palestinian Media Watch, which translated the program and regularly monitors Palestinian media, said Tomorrow’s Pioneers, which comes out of the Gaza Strip, is available via satellite around the world. The program often blends pragmatic advice with hate, she said.
“Generally the program also transmits good messages to kids like drinking milk or asking parents permission to do something, but we also find these very problematic messages like the call to kill Jews,” she said.
Furthermore, Zilberdik said that in her organization’s broader monitoring of Palestinian media, no objections to or repudiation of hatred-inciting messages being included in children’s programs had been found.
This is not the first time Palestinian Media Watch has discovered hateful content in programs made for children.
After worldwide outcry, the character was executed on the program by an Israeli interrogator, and was soon replaced by another character who expressed similar sentiments, Zilberdik said.
The following comes from a transcript of the program aired on September 22:
Nassur: “There won’t be any Jews or Zionists, if Allah wills. They’ll be erased.”
Saraa: “Chased away.”
Nassur: “And just like we will visit the Qaaba [in Mecca]… everyone will visit Jerusalem.”
(A seven-year-old boy on the phone tells how his father, a member of Hamas’s Izzadin Kassam Brigades, “died as a shahid (martyr).”)
Nassur to boy: “What do you want to do to the Jews who shot your father?”
Boy: “I want to kill them.”
Saraa: “We don’t want to do anything to them, just expel them from our land.”
Nassur: “We want to slaughter (nidbah-hom) them, so they will be expelled from our land, right?”
Saraa: “Yes. That’s right. We will expel them from our land using all means.”
Nassur: “And if they don’t want [to go] peacefully, by words or talking, we’ll have to [do it] by slaughter (shaht).”
(Al-Aksa (Hamas) TV, September 22, 2009)
James Hudson in image from sting video. An edited version has been posted on YouTube
LONDON – British news reports have been full of the story of James Hudson, a pudgy, bespectacled British diplomat with security clearance who was caught in an apparent “honey-trap” in a Russian brothel, according to a report in Joseph Farah’s G2 Bulletin.
A video posted online by Russians revealing Hudson’s sexual antics not only terminated his career but also his own off-the-record attempt to set up a trap for leaders of Russia’s secret military labs as well as a separate strategy by MI6, Britain’s intelligence agency, to do the same thing.
Hudson had been stationed in Ekaterinburg, Russia’s fourth city in the Ural Mountains, where he was assigned to dish out visas and make arrangements for visiting British businessmen.
He was also good on the city’s history: a city for which the Empress Catherine was named; where Czar Nicholas and his children were murdered during the Russian Revolution; where Boris Yeltsin, Russia’s first president, was born; where Gary Powers was shot down in his CIA spy plane; and where a massive anthrax outbreak occurred at a biological warfare establishment during the Cold War.
Keep in touch with the most important breaking news stories about critical developments around the globe with Joseph Farah’s G2 Bulletin, the premium, online intelligence news source edited and published by the founder of WND.
No one at the consulate suspected the girls had become part of Hudson’s plan to fulfill a fantasy of joining MI6 as a spy. With an application to join MI6 pending, he apparently thought he could impress the agency by trying on his own volition to recruit some of the girls at the brothel.
He had seen them frolicking with high-level Russian officers in the brothel where he was a regular visitor.
But now, on the Internet, his career’s demise is known as: “The adventures of Mr. Hudson,” an explicit video posted on a Russian site. The four-minute production shows Hudson, naked apart from a dressing gown, with his two doe-eyed Slavonic beauties.
The response from the Foreign Office in London was: “We have too many problems in places like Iran and Afghanistan to spend time worrying about a junior diplomat being indiscrete in the Urals. That said, we are not in a position to confirm or deny the allegations, and we do not generally comment on individual personal matters.”
Bored with his career in the diplomatic service after serving in Sarajevo, Havana and Budapest, the 37-year-old divorced father of one had decided a move to MI6 was for him.
But Hudson did not know that for some months MI6 had been considering how its Moscow station could ensnare the Russian officers by using the oldest trap in the intelligence world: the honey-trap. Like Hudson, the Russian officers also were regular visitors to the brothel.
Pro-lifers challenge Planned Parenthood to be equally open
The full 47 minutes of a video done by Live Action Films revealing Indianapolis Planned Parenthood staff members covering up a reported statutory rape has been released, along with a challenge from pro-life activists for the abortion industry leader to be equally open.
The video, available on the Live Action Films website, reveals in real time the sequence of events highlighted in an earlier edited release.
As WND reported at the time, the video shows a staff member for Planned Parenthood counseling a “pregnant 13-year-old” to avoid mandatory statutory rape reporting laws by suggesting the patient look into the states that surround Indiana.
In Indiana, sex involving an adult and a 13-year-old is a felony, and any time a minor under 14 is involved, law enforcement must be contacted immediately. However, the video released by LiveActionFilms.org reveals a counselor suggesting how the requirements can be avoided.
Just days earlier, the organization unveiled a video about a pro-life activist, 20-year-old Lila Rose, going into a Bloomington, Ind., Planned Parenthood facility undercover where a “nurse” ignored the apparent felony of a young teen pregnant by a 31-year-old and coached the “patient” to protect the assailant.
Now Live Action has released the full 47-minute video of the undercover operation in Indianapolis, with the unedited footage showing the story in real time as clinic employees met Rose, again posing as a 13-year-old, and heard her describe how a 31-year-old man had impregnated her.
“Once in the counseling room, a Planned Parenthood nurse assured Rose that she would not report the statutory rape and instructed her how to obtain a secret abortion across state lines,” the organization said.
But Rose also challenged Planned Parenthood to show transparency.
Citing a letter released earlier, Rose called on Betty Cockrum, president of Planned Parenthood of Indiana, to release the company’s data on how often it provides birth control, pregnancy testing, STD testing and abortion services to minors under the age of 14 and how often it has reported these cases to Child Protective Services.
The organization has not responded, Rose said.
“If Planned Parenthood has concern for the children of Indiana, as they claim, why don’t they disclose the statistics that will help law enforcement apprehend the scope of the problem?” Rose said. “We are willing to be open and transparent about our methods and activities because we have nothing to hide.
“Can Planned Parenthood of Indiana say the same?”
The organization eventually may have no choice. Rose said state authorities in Indiana now may open an investigation into Planned Parenthood’s handling of statutory rape cases.
The video is part of Live Action Films’ Mona Lisa Project, which across the summer of 2008 documented inside information about the abortion industry.
The project says despite “a consistent pattern of lawlessness and abuse, Planned Parenthood receives over $300 million from taxpayers.”
The tax-exempt “nonprofit” also netted $100 million in profits last year.
One Planned Parenthood staff resigned following release of the Indianapolis video. When the similar video was released from the Bloomington, Ind., Planned Parenthood, one employee was fired.
“Lila Rose exemplifies the new wave of pro-life activism and best reflects Operation Rescue’s own efforts to expose illegal conduct in our nation’s abortion mills,” Operation Rescue President Troy Newman said.
“Her work has helped raise public awareness of the seedy underbelly of the abortion industry and has helped to launch criminal investigations that we pray will eventually hold out-of- control abortionists accountable for their criminal acts,” he said.
BY BOB UNRUH
Recordings revealed willingness to do abortions based on race
Reading the words carries an impact, but nothing compared to when you listen to them: It happened when a Planned Parenthood worker is asked to accept a donation specifically to abort a black child, and her response is: “Understandable, understandable.”
Now, however, those interested in the controversy over Planned Parenthood’s large role in the nation’s abortion industry may have to settle for seeing those words, since YouTube has decided to censor several audio recordings that had been posted by pro-life activists documenting the corporation’s willingness to accept donations on the basis of race.
That’s the word from Live Action Films, a pro-life student organization whose officials confirmed that not only did YouTube block four of their postings, YouTube has refused to respond to a request from Live Action to unblock the videos and explain the actions.
The videos included staged telephone recordings of discussions between an actor supplied by the pro-life activists and Planned Parenthood workers in which the abortion operations agree to process donations from a caller with a racist agenda.
“It is discriminatory for YouTube to selectively censor material that clearly does not contain inappropriate content,” said Live Action President Lila Rose, who also edits The Advocate, and whose work to document Planned Parenthood activities previously was reported by WND.
“We will continue to apply pressure on YouTube until it restores the videos,” she said.
The posted recordings had generated wide interest from the national media, and Live Action Media Director David Schmidt said, “These four videos have received over 160,000 YouTube views in total with the oldest video having been public on YouTube for over seven months. Why are these videos being removed now?”
The information in the recordings is significant, apparently documenting a willingness on the part of Planned Parenthood to facilitate the destruction of unborn babies based on race.
The following is the exchange on one of the YouTube postings:
The pro-life organization noted there are 1,400 African-American babies lost to abortion each day, and African-American women account for 12 percent of the female population but submit to over 36 percent of abortions.
“Their founder, Margaret Sanger, designed the organization to use sterilization and abortion to control minority populations. And today, Planned Parenthood of America sets up special funds across the country to target minority women,” the group said.
It isn’t the first time YouTube has shut down a pro-life message, the organization said. In July, a video by the Population Research Institute was closed off because it criticized a pro-abortion journalist. Just a few months earlier, YouTube removed a video from the American Life League that was critical of Planned Parenthood, although it later was restored following protests.
Rose said the banned videos documenting the response from several Planned Parenthood offices can be viewed on Live Action Films website.
WND also reported earlier when Rose posed as a 15-year-old seeking an abortion at a Planned Parenthood center in Santa Monica, Calif. She was equipped with a hidden camera when she met with an employee to discuss her options.
When Rose revealed she was 15 and her boyfriend was 23, the employee informed her Planned Parenthood was legally required to report the statutory rape, a transcript of the conversation shows.
The Planned Parenthood representative then suggested she could say she was 16 and avoid complications.
“Well, just figure out a birth date that works. And I don’t know anything,” the rep said.
The Texas-based pro-life group Life Dynamics previously conducted an extensive undercover project in which an adult volunteer posing as a 13-year-old called every Planned Parenthood clinic in the U.S., saying she was pregnant by a 22-year-old boyfriend. Almost without exception, the clinics advised her to obtain an abortion without her parents’ knowledge and told her how to protect her boyfriend, who would be guilty in any state of statutory rape.
3rd video showing assault on ’15-year-old’ brings no report
By Bob Unruh
A new video released by the same people who caught Planned Parenthood businesses in Indiana ignoring an apparent case of statutory rape in their rush to offer a juvenile an abortion now have released a video about the Margaret Sanger Center in Tucson, Ariz., where a nurse apparently has done the same thing.
An undercover pro-life activist who visited the Tucson Planned Parenthood business, explaining she was 15 and her boyfriend was 27, was told how to go to court to obtain an abortion without having her parents notified, and was encouraged not to have her 27-year-old “boyfriend” along when she appeared in court.
A spokeswoman for the Planned Parenthood business in Tucson told WND officials “are aware” of the film.
“Currently, we’re looking into it. We do take this very seriously,” said spokeswoman Jo Nestor.
The video from Live Action Films explained that in Arizona, sex between an adult and a 15-year-old is a felony, and “if an adult-child sexual relationship is revealed, law enforcement must be contacted immediately.”
The video reveals how an undercover activist goes into the clinic, identifies herself as Lizzie and provides an age of 15. Her “boyfriend’s” age of 27 also is revealed.
The Planned Parenthood worker, whose identity was not immediately revealed, started describing abortion procedures and costs.
The worker promised to give the “patient” the “paperwork” to take to court to obtain a judicial bypass on a parental notification requirement.
She also suggested, “when you go in to see the judge that you dress up nicely, you know, you want to look mature… I am not saying like a grown women, like an old woman, but, you know, just mature that you know what you are getting into.”
The age of the boyfriend again was raised.
“Is he not a minor?” the Planned Parenthood nurse, who identifies herself as Araceli, asks. When UCLA student Lila Rose, in her undercover role, says, “He’s 27,” the nurse urges the girls not to bring him to the hearing: “I wouldn’t take him with me, no. I mean: don’t take him.”
The hidden-camera footage results are the work of Rose and her friend, Jackie Stoller.
The two also were integral in obtaining statements from two Planned Parenthood businesses in Indiana that involved similar suspected illegal activity.
The video is the third to be released in a national undercover probe called the “Mona Lisa Project.”
It focuses on Planned Parenthood workers’ response to reports of statutory rape.
In the cases released to date, Planned Parenthood clinics hide the identity of the statutory rapist and offer secret abortions.
“These videos demonstrate that Planned Parenthood, the nation’s largest abortion provider, is entrenched in an organization-wide policy of circumventing state law and covering up the sexual abuse of young girls,” said Rose, Live Action’s president.
In the Indiana cases, both clinics either suspended or fired employees, and state prosecutors have begun investigating, Live Action officials said.
“Our footage gives the Arizona public and law enforcement a rare window into Planned Parenthood’s ruthless abortion-first ideology,” Rose stated. “With abortion as their first and only solution for the abuse victim, Planned Parenthood assists sexual predators by violating the very Arizona state laws that protect children.”
The Sanger Center in Tucson is named after Planned Parenthood founder Margaret Sanger, who, according to Answers.com, once suggested Congress set up a “Parliament of Population” whose goal would be “to raise the level and increase the general intelligence of population.”
The webside source said when Germany adopted the principles of eugenics to create a “master race,” Sanger failed to denounce the Nazi tactics. In a letter, she wrote, “The campaign for birth control is not merely of eugenic value, but is practically identical with the final aims of eugenics….”
She included among her beliefs that there are instances when there should be forced prevention of child-bearing.
“The undeniably feeble-minded should, indeed, not only be discouraged but prevented from propagating their kind,” she said, according to the website.
One case revealed a staff member for Planned Parenthood counseling a “pregnant 13-year-old” to avoid mandatory statutory rape reporting laws by suggesting the patient look into the states that surround Indiana.
Another showed a “nurse” ignoring the apparent felony of a young teen pregnant by a 31-year-old and coached the “patient” to protect the assailant.
“Lila Rose exemplifies the new wave of pro-life activism and best reflects Operation Rescue’s own efforts to expose illegal conduct in our nation’s abortion mills,” Operation Rescue President Troy Newman said.