[Marxism] ANSWER: Washington employing high-tech surveillance devices at demos

Mike Friedman mikedf at amnh.org
Tue Oct 9 18:16:48 MDT 2007

Washington Post reports on:
Flying surveillance devices at Sept. 15 Mass March and Die-in

Dragonfly spies
A prototype of a flying surveillance device still under development
(photo attached to ANSWER post)

Today's Washington Post carries a major article about the government's
creation of small flying surveillance devices that look somewhat like
dragonflies.  As the article below discusses, there have been credible
independent reports about sightings at ANSWER's recent September 15 mass
March on Washington of 100,000 people. According to the article, the
government has been working through many agencies to perfect this spy
technology. As also mentioned below, the Partnership for Civil Justice has
recently filed a series of Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests with
different government agencies regarding use and deployment against the

Vanessa Alarcon, who was working backstage at the Lafayette Park rally,
and who is quoted in today's Washington Post article, reported that the
strange-looking devices were hovering above the backstage area where
speakers were waiting to take the stage and organizers were holding
meetings in preparation for the mass march and die-in. Others reported
that they saw the devices elsewhere at the demonstration.

The government's efforts to surveille the growing movement against the war
in the United States are neither new nor are they effective in preventing
the antiwar movement from gaining momentum everywhere. The government
fined ANSWER $40,000 for putting up antiwar posters, suppressed and
arrested the speakers at a pre-march press conference, spent large amounts
of money to mobilize right-wing pro-Bush supporters, and yet all of these
efforts failed to stop an exceptionally powerful action from taking place
on Sept. 15. The protest culminated in a die-in of thousands led by Iraq
war veterans and 200 arrested by riot police.

Following September 15th, the ANSWER Coalition, along with other national
and local coalitions and organizers from around the country, are
mobilizing for October 27th regional actions. This will be another
powerful sign that the antiwar movement is growing, not diminishing as
claimed by the corporate-owned media.

While there are those who would like to dismiss the implications of such
spying, the fact is that if the government is intentionally conducting
secret photographic or audio surveillance targeting people because they
are engaged in public protest and First Amendment-protected activities,
this would be a significant constitutional rights violation.

While we do not know that such bizarre spy technology was deployed at the
September 15 demonstration, if anyone saw these "dragonflies," we'd like
to hear from you.

Take a stand against government repression. Help this movement grow. We
will not be intimidated. Please make an urgently needed donation today.

-- For more information, go to ANSWER Coalition
(http://www.answercoalition/). To receive updates about the Partnership
for Civil Justice's FOIA request, go to http://www.justiceonline.org/.

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