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'consider the Geneva Conventions against protecting civilians in wartime “no longer relevant.”'
June 25, 2012 1:51 PM   Subscribe

Last year, Wired reported that 'The FBI is teaching its counterterrorism agents that “main stream” [sic] American Muslims are likely to be terrorist sympathizers; that the Prophet Mohammed was a “cult leader”; and that the Islamic practice of giving charity is no more than a “funding mechanism for combat.”' (previously) The FBI pledged reform, but the materials appeared to be deeply embedded. After the President ordered a review, the FBI 'purged' the documents from training materials. Earlier this year Wired reported that 'U.S. Military Taught Officers: Use ‘Hiroshima’ Tactics for ‘Total War’ on Islam.'

The course was shut down by order of the chairman of the Joint Chiefs, and the existence and persistence of the course blamed on 'institutional failures.'

Wired has been doing a bang-up job. Lots and lots more on their site - images, PDFs, and other articles.
posted by the man of twists and turns (42 comments total) 26 users marked this as a favorite

 
On a personal note, I was detained at the airport the other day when customs found I was carrying a Palestinian music cassette. It was shocking reminder of the boneheaded level of racism and suspicion at the "agent" level -- that undoubtedly reaches across the board.
posted by iamck at 1:55 PM on June 25, 2012 [15 favorites]


It seems both supremely ironic and deeply disturbing that agents are being trained to fight terrorists via hateful propaganda about a non-majoritarian group's beliefs and practices.
posted by bearwife at 1:59 PM on June 25, 2012 [5 favorites]


I am sincerely glad that someone is doing it, but when did Wired start publishing inside-government Serious Journalism stuff?
posted by shakespeherian at 2:02 PM on June 25, 2012 [6 favorites]


that agents are being trained to fight terrorists

Well, it makes total sense if you think that only Muslims become terrorists, and also all terrorists who are Muslim are religiously-oriented.

You'd have to be a complete idiot to think that, though, so I don't know how these people get listened to.
posted by the man of twists and turns at 2:03 PM on June 25, 2012 [2 favorites]


they are protecting us from sharia law thank you officers
posted by (Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates at 2:03 PM on June 25, 2012


shakespeherian: "I am sincerely glad that someone is doing it, but when did Wired start publishing inside-government Serious Journalism stuff?"

Probably around the time that the "serious" journos stopped.
posted by rebent at 2:03 PM on June 25, 2012 [4 favorites]


I'm glad someone is doing this kind of journalism. Wired and Rolling Stone have both been doing some great work lately. It's a shame so much of mainstream reporting has become, well, transcription-of-press-releases.
posted by rmd1023 at 2:05 PM on June 25, 2012 [3 favorites]


when did Wired start publishing inside-government Serious Journalism stuff?"

After big newspapers started laying off the Serious Journalists?
posted by mrbill at 2:05 PM on June 25, 2012 [10 favorites]


It's been alternatively infuriating and fascinating to watch the local Islamophobia show play out in my local city where a small group of Muslims, who have long outgrown their storefront meeting center, bought, permitted and began to build a new mosque, and all completely without fanfare until a local megachurch pastor got wind of it and turned it into A Very Dire Thing Indeed.

There were marches, vandalism, lawsuits and all sorts of things, including a constant parade of 'experts' in sharia, Islam and the like, streaming into town and giving talks at the various churches and whatnot in town. One local congresscritter even turned into a major plank of her platform, elevating it from a mere mosque to an Islamic Training Center. With classrooms! And a pool, for all love! The Muslims, meanwhile, are baffled. They've been here for 25+ years, but you'd think someone was erecting a minaret next to town hall. It's been a like live-action version of The Music Man, except with a bad fever-dream mixed in.

So I'm not at all surprised that these same clowns and their fellow travelers under the big top managed to find something to peddle in Washington, to the dozens of agencies suddenly flush with cash for training and who knows what the hell else.
posted by jquinby at 2:08 PM on June 25, 2012 [19 favorites]


You should check out Rolling Stone and Vanity Fair sometime.
posted by Artw at 2:12 PM on June 25, 2012


Sigh. "Can't let the Soviet Communists Muslim Terrorists win!"
posted by mrbill at 2:12 PM on June 25, 2012 [2 favorites]


...that the Prophet Mohammed was a “cult leader”...

And, what was Jesus, pray tell?
posted by Thorzdad at 2:21 PM on June 25, 2012 [2 favorites]


a rabbi?
posted by clavdivs at 2:21 PM on June 25, 2012 [5 favorites]


posted by Thorzdad And, what was Jesus, pray tell?

A community activist.
posted by mattdidthat at 2:22 PM on June 25, 2012 [7 favorites]


And, what was Jesus, pray tell?

Jesus was just some random weird dude walking around doing crazy shit. Paul was the one who went full L Ron.
posted by (Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates at 2:25 PM on June 25, 2012 [32 favorites]


I visited my parents in the American South last week and yelled at my mother for stating that all Muslims should be rounded up and sent out of the country because otherwise they are going to take over. Apparently, she is getting this info from her Southern Baptist church.
posted by perhapses at 2:34 PM on June 25, 2012 [1 favorite]


I'm not at all surprised that these same clowns and their fellow travelers under the big top managed to find something to peddle in Washington

I don't know if I'm surprised but I am certainly deeply disappointed that an executive agency reporting to this President is training federal agents with the same hateful misinformation bandied by a local megachurch bigot.
posted by bearwife at 2:35 PM on June 25, 2012 [1 favorite]


Sorry...several Federal military and paramilitary organizations are training its officers to prosecute a race war, and it isn't worthy of discussion, or "rehashing"? I guess I don't see your point - this seems like a good roundup of an emerging pattern which I find somewhat troubling, not to mention a discussion of how new media organizations like Wired are starting to step up to fill the watchdog void.
posted by Salvor Hardin at 2:36 PM on June 25, 2012


[Folks, we know you know where MetaTalk is, please flag and move on.]
posted by jessamyn at 2:39 PM on June 25, 2012 [1 favorite]


Maybe I should start reading Wired, because I first learned about this story after the FBI decided to stop using the offending documents, from people on my Facebook feed who posted things like "The MUSLIM BROTHERHOOD is NOW IN CHARGE of COUNTERTERRORISM AT THE FBI!"
posted by escabeche at 3:13 PM on June 25, 2012 [1 favorite]


On a personal note, I was detained at the airport the other day when customs found I was carrying a Palestinian music cassette.

I think they were just shocked that you were carrying around a cassette. They must have thought you had time traveled here from 1988.

But that really verges on thought police territory. We've really crossed over into "Check your baggage and your freedoms at the counter before you board a plane" territory.
posted by euphorb at 3:31 PM on June 25, 2012 [4 favorites]




This is not surprising given the proportions of conservatives who enter the police and armed forces versus liberals.

Once a member of the Bible-thumping crowd makes it up high enough in the food chain, his idiocy invariably winds up as part of the departmental standard operating procedure and there is no one intelligent enough to thwart them.
posted by Renoroc at 4:08 PM on June 25, 2012 [1 favorite]


Just heard this on the radio:

FBI Tracking 100 Suspected Extremists In Military

I find it hard to believe that there are 100 double-agent radicals in the military, but damn:

The FBI typically divides investigations into three categories: assessment, preliminary investigations, and then full investigations in which agents have enough evidence to justify using all the investigative tools at their disposal. As of last December, there were a dozen cases in that last category.
As for this, the military's "religous war" vein is scary-as-f and Wired has done a great job covering this story.
posted by rosswald at 4:21 PM on June 25, 2012


Bachmann: Muslim Brotherhood Has ‘Penetrated’ The U.S. Government

I just assume the tapeworms have penetrated her brain at this point.
posted by elizardbits at 4:27 PM on June 25, 2012 [9 favorites]


It appears that there has been deep penetration in the halls of our United States government by the Muslim Brotherhood. The Muslim Brotherhood has been found to be an unindicted co-conspirator on terrorism cases and yet it appears that there are individuals who are associated with the Muslim Brotherhood who have positions, very sensitive positions, in our Department of Justice, our Department of Homeland Security, potentially even in the National Intelligence Agency. I am calling upon the Justice Department and these various departments to investigate through the Inspector General to see who these people are and what access they have to our information.
Sometimes I feel as if the NIA is the only thing standing between freedom &...not freedom.
posted by scalefree at 5:04 PM on June 25, 2012


Crusaders gonna crusade.
posted by hanoixan at 5:16 PM on June 25, 2012 [4 favorites]


Seriously, that Bachmann quote, if that is indeed what it is, reads like it was lifted from Joe McCarthy, what with the vague accusations of infiltration at the highest levels of government. She's holding a list of card-carrying Muslims working in government!
posted by univac at 5:27 PM on June 25, 2012 [4 favorites]


She's holding a list of card-carrying Muslims working in government!

Top secret jobs at the apparently-not-top-secret-anymore NIA, no doubt.
posted by scalefree at 5:43 PM on June 25, 2012 [2 favorites]


It's not Wired per se that should get all the credit: the editor of that Wired blog, Noah Shachtman, is a seriously talented investigative reporter. From what I gather, he may have been forced out of his previous job at the Defensetech blog years ago for political reasons, and found a more welcoming home at Wired. (D-tech is so far right, now, that I'm waiting for a birther post.)
posted by StrikeTheViol at 6:04 PM on June 25, 2012 [6 favorites]


Here, you can see his post titles from '06. You'll notice a similar thing happened to Spencer Ackerman, the blogger who wrote the post in the FPP.
posted by StrikeTheViol at 6:14 PM on June 25, 2012 [1 favorite]


Well, it makes total sense if you think that only Muslims become terrorists.

Have they not heard of the IRA, Red Army Faction, Shing Path and numerous other groups that aren't Muslim?
posted by arcticseal at 7:21 PM on June 25, 2012


I just assume the tapeworms have penetrated her brain at this point.

No, while the phylum Platyhelminthes is undeterred by an unlit environment, it is unable to survive in vacuo.
posted by Twang at 7:49 PM on June 25, 2012 [6 favorites]


Air Force called out for 'denigrating' religious liberty
I love how "religious freedom" now means "every government institution needs to endorse christianity"

and that Michigan state senator who was censored for saying "vagina", she made the point that in judaism, if a fetus is going to threaten the life of the mother, it has to be aborted. where is her religious liberty to do that? she doesn't it, as it's not evangical christian religious liberty, the only one that counts.
posted by camdan at 7:59 PM on June 25, 2012 [2 favorites]


Specifically, the letter blasts the Air Force for removing religious references in missile training, removing Bibles from Air Force Inn checklists, and barring commanders from telling airmen about chaplain Corps programs.

Why exactly are religious references necessary in missile training?
posted by vibrotronica at 9:19 PM on June 25, 2012 [1 favorite]


Unfortunately, it's probably the part where you pray that it actually works.
posted by feloniousmonk at 9:37 PM on June 25, 2012 [2 favorites]


I remember reading an "Islam 101" (PDF) training manual that Danger Room shared in an article last year, which seemed to me sometimes like a middle-school book report, with some paranoia over "the Other" thrown in. Just atrocious that it was used as training material as late as 2009...

Danger Room is a great resource in general, btw. Their coverage of things like rising military and civilian drone use, the oxhygen supply issues with the F-22 Raptor, military procurement issues, etc. are first rate. Noah's/DR's Twitter account is also good.
posted by gemmy at 10:07 PM on June 25, 2012




Sorry...several Federal military and paramilitary organizations are training its officers to prosecute a race war, and it isn't worthy of discussion, or "rehashing

I believe your refering to my deleted comment by jessamyn... I will restate and attempt to answer your question...if it does not get deleted and taking to metatalk won't work either. so...

Prosecute a race war. What does that mean. Does it mean that they plan to stop, start, litagte or what.....a "Race War"

this seems like a good roundup of an emerging pattern
and which pattern is that...can you see this pattern interlaced with-in society as a whole or just what Wired tells you.


not to mention a discussion of how new media organizations like Wired are starting to step up to fill the watchdog void. Is it new? No it is not. A montage of books in the library. Anyone could spin that, Like having Erika Mann book in 1934. Is there shortage on watchdog groups.

And as recently as last week, the online orientation material for the FBI’s Joint Terrorism Task Forces included claims that Sunni Islam seeks “domination of the world,” according to a law enforcement source.

Crazy huh. Well maybe a few do. Maybe it is bad, very bad guvment work which makes me suspect. Here is a book by one of the best, read it, people get some education and review these incidents.

Armed with Pig’s Head, Christians Confront Michigan Muslims

did you read that Homunc? These folks are haters and people, for the most, laugh at them.
It is good it is reported but many do not feel threatened by these idiots, of course that is my opinion based on asking those I know and what they think.

and that Michigan state senator who was censored for saying "vagina", she made the point that in judaism, if a fetus is going to threaten the life of the mother, it has to be aborted. where is her religious liberty to do that? she doesn't it, as it's not evangical christian religious liberty, the only one that counts.

What does this have to do with the post...better yet, what does it mean?
posted by clavdivs at 7:15 AM on June 26, 2012


clavdivs, my comment was a bit of a tangent. it seems in the talk about "religious liberty" by the christian right, that "liberty" only applies to the christian majority. hence, there is no fight to keep government from interfering with anyone's religious freedom, just the freedom of the majority to use the government to further its own goals, or to use the government to suppress the free practice of other religions. one would be hard pressed to claim that classes teaching government agents that American Muslims are terrorists, and that the US should engage in a "total war" on Islam, isn't using the government to suppress religious liberty. Unless calling US citizens "terrorists" just due to their religious beliefs, and advocating wiping out entire civilian populations for the same reason (in different countries, no less!), isn't an affront to their right to freely worship. I'm not sure what else you could call the wholesale slaughter of a people. I guess if they're "dead" you aren't keeping them from "practicing" their religion, most would not agree that that is a reasoned technicality.
this is no different than the mindset that plagued Europe during the wars of religion, which is the reason the establishment clause was included in our bill of rights.

i mention Rep. Brown, as her religion (Judaism) preaches that abortions are required if the fetus will harm the mother. whereas the majority religion (Christianity) is using the legislature to ban all abortions, regardless of one's religious affiliation. so arguably this would be an affront to Jews, to practice their religion as they see fit. one can argue the same with the use of contraceptives; if your denomination (or lack of affiliation with one) doesn't preach that it is a sin, then someone who thinks it is, because of their beliefs, shouldn't be able to use the government to keep you from using it.

obviously there have to be limits to freedom of religion, if a religion preaches ritual sacrifice (ironically, considering the above) of course our laws cannot allow that. and of course christian litigators are allowed to use their conscience, through their faith, to guide their decisions. and i do understand their arguments when it comes to the keeping a healthy future-human alive. but i think it's important to remember that there is a multiplicity of faiths in America, and in the world, and that the government should have no role in favoring one at the expense of another.
posted by camdan at 1:13 PM on June 26, 2012


one would be hard pressed to claim that classes teaching government agents that American Muslims are terrorists, and that the US should engage in a "total war" on Islam, isn't using the government to suppress religious liberty

I'm not hard pressed. If this is the exact distillation of the course when it was exposed for what it was? Since this has not happened, these american government classes "suppressing liberty"are hallmark protecting liberties for ALL.

so arguably this would be an affront to Jews, to practice their religion as they see fit.

Not really, there are no laws to prevent this in my state. She was called out for decorum not the argument.

Overall I get your point. I just love it when stupid things get slapped down and Wired does not need the extra points IMO. They did enough.
posted by clavdivs at 3:28 PM on June 26, 2012


Strike "if this"


sounds like a good name for a Album.
posted by clavdivs at 3:30 PM on June 26, 2012


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