Friday, September 17, 2010

Israeli-Style "Anti-Terrorism Bulletins" Funded by Pennsylvania

Also see Israeli intel firm behind Pennsylvannia's "terror" bulletins on peace, environment, LGBT groups From Ali Abunimah

DN! Penn. Paid Firm to Monitor Activist Groups:

"StartLoving3 | September 16, 2010

Penn. Paid Firm to Monitor Activist Groups

Pennsylvania Governor Ed Rendell has apologized following the disclosure his administration paid a private firm to monitor a number of local activist groups. The Philadelphia-based Institute of Terrorism and Research Response received $125,000 to gather material for state anti-terrorism bulletins. The bulletins included information on an anti-BP candlelight vigil, a gay and lesbian festival, and even a rally to support Rendell's own campaign to increase spending on public education. The company also monitored opponents of drilling in the Marcellus Shale, noting their plans to attend public hearings and screen the documentary Gasland. In addition to law enforcement agencies, the 'intelligence' was also passed on to private entities, including gas companies. At a news conference, Rendell apologized to the targeted groups. Gov. Ed Rendell: 'I apologize to the Marcellus Shale protesters. I apologize to the taxpayers protesters. I apologize to the Lesbian and Gay Pride Festival. I apologize to virtually every single name that was on this list.'

Rendell says he just learned of the monitoring in the past week but has refused to fire the director of Pennsylvania's Office of Homeland Security. The company that carried out the spying, Institute of Terrorism and Research Response, has extensive ties with the Israeli government. On its website, the company bills itself as 'the preeminent Israeli/American security firm.' The website also touts the company's 'Israeli-style training' and says all its courses 'are approved by the Israeli Ministry of Defense.'

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