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Where is your data safe? A Barrett Brown Example

It is difficult to explain why important releases abruptly disappear from public view. Here's one example that did survive, and at the end, I'll list a few that were less fortunate. My current project is to trace the systematic and quiet removal of whistleblower and FOIA information from the public view, even after it's presence is considered legal and appropriate. Barrett Brown was still coherent in 2012, before the FBI exploited his weaknesses and rattled his mind: here is an example from pastebin.
INDYRADIO (2012) Barrett Brown writes:
As I have noted, the FBI raided my apartment in Dallas on the morning of March 6th. I was not there at the time; I had been given a vague warning that a raid was to take place the next day, so I went to my mom's place, where she lives with her husband, who is out of town, on the 5th. On the morning of the 6th, three FBI agents came to my mom's door and asked if I was there. She woke me up and I went down to talk to them.

They told me that they'd executed a search warrant at my apartment and that the door had been broken in the process, and then asked me if I had any laptops with me here at my mom's place that I wanted to give them. I responded in the negative, and they left. At that point I began taking calls and e-mails from the press regarding Sabu, whom I learned was in fact a degenerate pussy traitor who couldn't face two fucking years in prison, making him the biggest pussy in the history of mankind.

There were several people who came to this conclusion early on; I was not wise enough to be one of them. As to the various stunts he pulled in the months since his arrest - including but not limited to the unnecessary release of credit card information for Stratfor customers - we may never know to what extent such things were encouraged by his "Justice Department" handlers in an effort to discredit this movement. But I digress, lol. At any rate, the Feds came back a couple of hours later with a search warrant for my mom's place - they fully intended to take a certain laptop, and did.

The documentation left with me by the FBI after the raid on my mother's home states that the evidence they were looking for pertains to "conspiracy to obstruct justice, and the obstruction of justice, i.e. tampering with a victim, witness, or informant" and "conspiracy to access without authorization protected computers, and fraud and related activity in connection with computers (aiding and abetting), in whatever form, namely:

1. Records relating to HBGary;
2. Records relating to Infragard;
3. Records relating to Endgame Systems;
4. Records relating to Anonymous;
5. Records relating to Lulzsec;
6. Records relating to IRC chat;
7. Records relating to Twitter;
8. Records relating to;
9. Records relating to;"

... and then goes on to list computers and anything relating to them as things to be seized.

I am happy to post this list as it contains the names of two firms - HBGary and Endgame Systems - which I will now have particular opportunity to discuss, in a more public setting, as this matter proceeds.

Barrett Brown
Project PM

Unfortunately, we are not so lucky with much of our history. The Chicago Reader has "lost" numerous whistleblower accounts, including the video evidence of Fred Hampton's assassination by Cook County State's Attorney Edward Hanrahan's hitmen, who acted with assistance from the FBI. As is well know, the FBI had their stooges map the exact location of Fred Hampton's bed, and made sure that he was "prepped for surgery" with a large quantity of Valium. Video of the crime scene was still available in 2006, is linked in Wikipedia, and the video is gone. The URL was not captured in time to save the only honest record of the crime scene here. It's absence is noted here I find even more disturbing the disappearance of an interview with the son of an Highland Park, IL business executive who confessed to have collaborated with the CIA to disrupt anti-war protests at 1968 Democratic Convention in Chicago. Someone must have a print copy of that issue from 1985 hidden an attic somewhere. Maybe in Lincoln Park, like mine was.

Dig back a little further, and there is the Chicago Seed. Before COINTELPRO, the cooperation between the Chicago Police and FBI was not quite as smooth, but when something upset them, they knew how to shut it down. The Chicago Seed was a free paper, dedicated to the legalization of marijuana, and also to the promulgation of social justice. They published photos of scurrilous narc who they outed and shamed. These were criminals themselves who turned their dealers and friends over to the pigs.

Failing a legal method to silence the Chicago Seed, which was distributed free at local head shops, the police took for themselves as many free copies as they could find. They arranged an operation which as not exactly a raid, but on one day in 1971, every head shop on their map got a visit, and the cops took every single copy. The paper was free, this was not stealing, and there were no signs that said "one per person" so fait accompli!

... and then there was the Chicago Red Squad. I have no doubt in my mind that Chicago's top detective at the time, number 3 in leadership of CPD, actually ran the Red Squad. When a warrant was issued to search the known HQ of Chicago's Red Squad, for records of their well known illegal ops, only one file cabinet of main remained. The "limited hangout", a method known today, was used to frame the cops who weren't so well like by the insiders. It's not uncommon for perpetrators to remove all the files that incriminate them and let the public ooh and ahh about the teasers they leave behind.

These are only a few examples, but examples abound between 1966 and today, with the now defunct Snowden Archive. Barrett Brown was one of the few early critics of the "limited hangout" that calls itself "The Intercept". How much it has intercept, we will never know, but they did get rid of the original reasons for their existence: the Snowden Archive and the man he leaked to, Glenn Greenwald, who was fired. James Bamford described these government "cleanup operations" in his early book "The Puzzle Palace". Fortunately, he was a well trained Lawyer from Yale who was able to fight them in court, or we wouldn't even have "The Puzzle Palace". In it, he describes the further militarization of NSA by Richard Nixon, though NSA was designed as a cryptologic aid for both the military and CIA, and is mentioned by the historic whistleblower Philip Agee, Nixon set in motion a reorganization that resulted in was was in place when Snowden was there. So, with a symbolic bow to the close relationship between NSA and FBI in the era of pervasive surveillance, we have as our cover photo Richard Nixon with J. Edgar Hoover.

That's enough for now,

David Roknich
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