Thursday, April 16, 2009

Smile! You're on Janet's Camera

The Secretary of Homeland Security thinks DHS's "report" on extremism is just fine and dandy.

Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano said Wednesday that she was briefed before the release of a controversial intelligence assessment and that she stands by the report, which lists returning veterans among terrorist risks to the U.S.

Others disagree.

But the top House Democrat with oversight of the Department of Homeland Security said in a letter to Ms. Napolitano that he was "dumbfounded" that such a report would be issued.

"This report appears to raise significant issues involving the privacy and civil liberties of many Americans - including war veterans," said Rep. Bennie Thompson of Mississippi, chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee, in his letter sent Tuesday night

Ms Napolitano, (no relation to Benito Mussolini), wants us to know that she has experience!

"The document on right-wing extremism sent last week by this department's Office of Intelligence and Analysis is one in an ongoing series of assessments to provide situational awareness to state, local and tribal law enforcement agencies on the phenomenon and trends of violent radicalization in the United States," Ms. Napolitano said in her statement.

"I was briefed on the general topic, which is one that struck a nerve as someone personally involved in the Timothy McVeigh prosecution," Ms. Napolitano said

...or maybe as 'someone who is extremely pro-abortion', Janet?

Congressman Thompson gets it.

Mr. Thompson's letter said, "I am particularly struck by the report's conclusion which states that I&A 'will be working with its state and local partners over the next several months to ascertain with greater regional specificity the rise in rightwing extremist activity in the United States with a particular emphasis on the political, economic, and social factors that drive rightwing extremist radicalization.' " He demanded to know what types of activities the Homeland Security Department had planned for "the next several months."

Even the ACLU (!!!) thinks that Janet Napolitano's report is a bit over the top. (Remember, Ms. Napolitano is not related to Joseph Stalin.)

Mike German, policy counsel for the American Civil Liberties Union and a former FBI agent, said his organization was concerned about law enforcement agencies' focus on radicalization, regardless of the specific ideology.

"Certainly, the right-wing report is focused far too much on rhetoric and things people say and things people think rather than on criminal activity and the people involved in criminal activity," he said. "There is plenty of crime out there for federal, state and local law enforcement to worry about.
They don't need to invent threats that they have no factual basis for supporting."

Ms. Napolitano (no relation to Jos. Speer) is touring the Mexican border for a week or so.

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