New York Police and Philippine National Police announce joint program “against terror and crime”

[Long ago, Phil Ochs wrote a satirical, anti-imperialist song, “We’re the Cops of the World,” and each day since has confirmed that ugly truth.  New efforts to re-tool Philippine forces to match the operational methods of US imperialist forces are part of similar global restructurings, especially with the previously announced renewed “pivot to Asia.”  See the articles from the Philippine Daily Inquirer,  ABS-CBN News/Phil Star — followed by the statement of the CP of the Philippines, below. — Frontlines ed.]

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NYPD deployed against Occupy movement

By

Sunday, November 4th, 2012

MANILA, Philippines—The Philippine National Police (PNP) and the New York Police Department (NYPD) have joined forces in a memorandum of understanding to fight terrorism and transnational crimes.

PNP Director General Nicanor Bartolome and NYPD’s Lt. Gustavo Rodriguez signed the Memorandum of Understanding in Camp Crame on Oct. 31.

“Mitigating transnational crime and combating terrorism is of utmost importance to the NYPD and we are proud to join forces with an agency that shares the same mission,” Rodriguez told reporters after the signing.

Bartolome said the PNP and NYPD would work together to mitigate transnational crimes “with emphasis on” illegal drugs, terrorism, smuggling, human trafficking, maritime fraud and cybercrime.

Bartolome said the MOU was about the “exchange of information” between the two police forces.

Philippine police deployed against farmers protest

“We have similar problems. It’s not just their problems or ours,” the PNP chief said.

Bartolome said the PNP had signed a similar MOU with the Australian Federal Police.

Rodriguez said the partnership would involve the collection of information on transnational crime and counter-terrorism that would be “disseminated back to New York City.” Continue reading

Courts Expose Stop-and-Frisk as Racist, Unconstitutional NYPD Harassment Strategy

8 Important Facets of the Legal Decision

AlterNet / By Kristen Gwynne

A US district judge has exposed the NYPD game as an illegal system of quotas and racial profiling imposed on field police from the top of the NYPD.

May 28, 2012  |

This month, a federal judge in New York dealt a blow to “stop-and-frisk,” a policy that resulted in 685,000 recorded police stops in 2011. Eighty-five percent of those stopped were African American and Latino, mostly youths.

US district judge Shira Scheindlin granted class-action certification to a stop-and-frisk lawsuit against the city of New York, Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly, and Mayor Michael Bloomberg. The plaintiffs allege that the NYPD’s stop-and-frisk policy regularly violates the Constitution by illegally stopping and searching scores of people belonging to a particular demographic — black and Latino. Pending the city’s appeal, the class-action ruling will put stop-and-frisk on trial.

Plaintiffs in Floyd et al. vs City of New York also argue that they were stopped by police who did not have the legally necessary “reasonable suspicion” that they had committed or were going to commit a crime. What’s more, the suit alleges, police often performed frisks, but not because they saw a bulge they suspected to be a weapon, another legal requirement.

In her written decision, Scheindlin said the alleged constitutional violations result not from the actions of rogue officers, but from a policy handed down from the very top. “The stop-and-frisk program is centralized and hierarchical,” said Scheindlin, “Those stops were made pursuant to a policy that is designed, implemented and monitored by the NYPD’s administration.” Continue reading

New York: Police continue to expand Racial Profiling / “Stop and Frisk” program

[The “Stop and Frisk” police program of racist targeting, harassment, and stalking of Black and Brown people, is a comprehensive and systematic policy of enforcing white supremacist privilege–and non-white subjugation–which is so essential to the American capitalist system.  While it is openly maintained, even boastfully, in New York City, the same program exists, with minor variations and guises, throughout the country.  —  Frontlines ed.]

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203,500 made in first 3 months of 2012; critics claim profiling in play

Protests of the systematic “stop and frisk” program in New York City and elsewhere have brought a politically diverse number of activists and politicians into opposition to the program. Here, New York City Public Advocate Bill de Blasio talks about a campaign to reform the NYPD’s stop and frisk program during a news conference Wednesday at New York’s City Hall.

By Edith Honan, Reuters, May 12, 2012

NEW YORK — New York police conducted more than 200,000 frisk searches in the first three months of this year, a 10 percent increase from the same period last year, even as critics say the practice often is racial profiling.

New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg and Police Commissioner Ray Kelly have long defended the program as one that saves lives and has helped bring violent crime down to historic lows, making New York one of the safest big cities in America.

But the New York Civil Liberties Union and other groups say that black and Latino New Yorkers are stopped with alarming frequency, even though in the great majority of cases they are found to have done nothing wrong.

Last week, the organization released a study that found that in 2011, police performed more stop-and-frisk searches of young black men than the total number of young black men living in New York.

So far this year, almost all of the stops have involved men, while blacks made up more than half of the stops and a third involved Latinos. About one in ten of those stopped were white and 3 percent of the stops were Asian.

Police spokesman Paul Browne said the demographic breakdown corresponded to crime data. The department provided the data to the New York City Council on Friday and to reporters on Saturday. Continue reading

Neighbors Spying on You? New Program Spreading Across the US Takes Neighborhood Watch to Scary New Level

By Uzma Kolsy , Salon, March 31, 2012
http://www.alternet.org/story/154772/neighbors_spying_on_you_new_program_spreading_across_the_us_takes_neighborhood_watch_to_scary_new_level

The Face of Neighborhood Watch: George Zimmerman, the Neighborhood Watch captain in Florida who shot and killed unarmed black teenager Trayvon Martin

Crime in Los Angeles is a gritty enterprise, and donning an LAPD badge has historically involved getting your hands dirty. Long before the New York Police Department was spying on Muslim students, the LAPD was running a large-scale domestic spy operation in the 1970s and ’80s, snooping on and infiltrating more than 200 political, labor and civic organizations including the office of then Mayor Tom Bradley. Today, the LAPD isn’t quite so aggressive, but it still employs a directive titled Special Order 1, which permits police officers to deem what is “suspicious” and then act on it.

SO 1 enables LAPD officers to file Suspicious Activity Reports on observed behaviors or activities. Where things get murky, however, is how SAR guidelines categorize constitutionally protected, non-criminal and commonplace activities such as using binoculars, snapping photographs and taking notes as indicators of terrorism-related activity. The SARs are coupled with the LAPD’s iWatch program, a campaign the police pioneered to encourage regular citizens to report “suspicious” activity, including “a person wearing clothes that are too big or too hot for the weather,” or things that just plain old don’t “look right.”

Far from being merely a local phenomenon, the standardized program that the LAPD developed in 2008 served as the lead model for a National Suspicious Activity Reporting Initiative. “Success” stories from the LAPD’s program are used in national training material, and the LAPD touts it as “the first program in the U.S. to create a national standard” for terrorism-related procedures. Continue reading

As police stalk and harass Muslims, notorious and shameful traditions of ethnic profiling abound

[Ethnic and racial profiling has always been a central feature of US economics, politics, culture, and forceful repression.  From Africans on slave plantations, to American Indian wars and displacement, to the “Chinese Exclusion Act” the pattern is unbroken.  80 years ago this month, 500,000 Mexicans and US-born Chicana/o citizens were deported to Mexico, in a series of “El Repatriado” deportations of, eventually, nearly two million–after being falsely blamed for “taking American jobs” during the collapse of the capitalist economy known as The Great Depression.  70 years ago, 120,000 Japanese Americans were rounded up and placed in concentration camps after being falsely accused of loyalty to the Japanese Emperor during WW2.  Now, adding to these and many such reprehensible traditions, Islamophobia has become a feature which the police state is boasting about, as it destroys the human rights of privacy, speech, and association of millions of Muslims now subjected to hostile surveillance and stalking–amidst false claims of inherent Muslim criminality and terror.  — Frontlines ed.]

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Demonstration in New York, November 2011

NYPD Defends Tactics Over Mosque Spying; Records Reveal New Details On Muslim Surveillance

By ADAM GOLDMAN and MATT APUZZO, Huffington Post, 02/24/12

NEW YORK — The New York Police Department targeted Muslim mosques with tactics normally reserved for criminal organizations, according to newly obtained police documents that showed police collecting the license plates of worshippers, monitoring them on surveillance cameras and cataloging sermons through a network of informants.

The documents, obtained by The Associated Press, have come to light as the NYPD fends off criticism of its monitoring of Muslim student groups and its cataloging of mosques and Muslim businesses in nearby Newark, N.J.

The NYPD’s spokesman, Paul Browne, forcefully defended the legality of those efforts Thursday, telling reporters that its officers may go wherever the public goes and collect intelligence, even outside city limits.

The new documents, prepared for Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly, show how the NYPD’s roster of paid informants monitored conversations and sermons inside mosques. The records offer the first glimpse of what those informants, known informally as “mosque crawlers,” gleaned from inside the houses of worship. Continue reading

NYPD Officers Shoot and Kill Three Black Men in One Week

Ramarley Graham, killed by NYPD (click for ABC news report)

By TOM HAYS   02/ 3/12, New York Times

NEW YORK — The police department announced Friday that a narcotics officer and his sergeant have been stripped of their guns and put on desk duty amid an investigation of the officer’s fatal shooting of an unarmed drug suspect within a few feet of the suspect’s grandmother inside the family home.

The measures came after the New York Police Department backed away from an initial account saying that the officer had struggled with 18-year-old Ramarley Graham at the door of a bathroom. Police said a bag of marijuana was found in the toilet, suggesting Graham was trying to flush it away before the gunfire erupted.

A grand jury was expected to investigate the shooting to determine if the officers should face criminal charges, said police Commissioner Raymond Kelly, who expressed sympathy for the family.

“We’re obviously trying to get the facts,” Kelly said at a news conference. “A young man’s life was taken. … It’s the worst thing that can happen to a parent – to lose a child.”

The NYPD did not immediately release the name of the 30-year-old officer or the sergeant, whose conduct was under scrutiny because he was in charge of the officers who responded to the home.

The shooting stemmed from an NYPD investigation of street corner drug dealing in a Bronx neighborhood. On Thursday afternoon, a police observation team identified Graham as a potential suspect and radioed to other officers that he “appeared to be armed,” Kelly said. In a later transmission, the officers mistakenly reported that “they observed the butt of a gun in the waistband of (Graham),” he added. Continue reading

New York: Police training the troops to viciously attack and deny the humanity of Muslims

[The growing police state apparatus in the US trains the police forces to attack targeted communities aggressively, with no reluctance or remorse.  This article details how such training is being done in New York and elsewhere, with malevolent slanders against Muslims.  Since this exposure came to light, the police commanders and politicians like Mayor Bloomberg have tried to deny–and when that didn’t work, to distance themselves from, and denounce–this practice.  In this way, the officials reveal that they understand that the claims of “American democracy” and of a “post-racial America” “free of racial profiling” are empty claims, with no relation to reality.  — Frontlines ed.]
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January 23, 2012

Training film uses invented charges, such as this picture falsely depecting a "desired" White House under Islamic flag, to inflame police against Muslims

In Police Training, a Dark Film on U.S. Muslims

By MICHAEL POWELL, New York Times

Ominous music plays as images appear on the screen: Muslim terrorists shoot Christians in the head, car bombs explode, executed children lie covered by sheets and a doctored photograph shows an Islamic flag flying over the White House.

“This is the true agenda of much of Islam in America,” a narrator intones. “A strategy to infiltrate and dominate America. … This is the war you don’t know about.”

This is the feature-length film titled “The Third Jihad,” paid for by a nonprofit group, which was shown to more than a thousand officers as part of training in the New York Police Department.

In January 2011, when news broke that the department had used the film in training, a top police official denied it, then said it had been mistakenly screened “a couple of times” for a few officers.

A year later, police documents obtained under the state’s Freedom of Information Law reveal a different reality: “The Third Jihad,” which includes an interview with Commissioner Raymond W. Kelly, was shown, according to internal police reports, “on a continuous loop” for between three months and one year of training.

During that time, at least 1,489 police officers, from lieutenants to detectives to patrol officers, saw the film.

News that police trainers showed this film so extensively comes as the department wrestles with its relationship with the city’s large Muslim community. The Police Department offers no apology for aggressively spying on Muslim groups and says it has ferreted out terror plots. Continue reading