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UK: Snowden reporter's partner involved in 'espionage' and 'terrorism'

November 2, 2013 by legitgov

UK: Snowden reporter's partner involved in 'espionage' and 'terrorism' 01 Nov 2013 British authorities claimed the domestic partner of reporter Glenn Greenwald was involved in "terrorism" when he tried to carry documents from former U.S. intelligence contractor Edward Snowden through a London airport in August, according to police and intelligence documents. Greenwald's partner, David Miranda, was detained and questioned for nine hours by British authorities at Heathrow on August 18, when he landed there from Berlin to change planes for a flight to Rio De Janeiro, Brazil.

Authorities ran through 'exact' drill scenario that played out at LAX on Friday - Police chief

November 2, 2013 by legitgov

Authorities ran through 'exact' drill scenario that played out at LAX on Friday - Police chief --TSA agent killed in LAX shooting, suspect ID'd 02 Nov 2013 A Transportation Security Administration agent was killed and several more people wounded when a gunman opened fire on Friday morning at Los Angeles International Airport... LAX airport police Chief Patrick Gannon said at a press conference that police tracked the suspect "through the airport and engaged him in gunfire in Terminal 3" and were able to take him into custody. During the press conference, Gannon said authorities had run through the "exact" scenario that played out at LAX on Friday, which helped them to respond effectively to the situation when it unfolded for real.

FBI: 23-year-old L.A. man, with 'anti-government' leanings, is suspect in airport shooting

November 2, 2013 by legitgov

FBI: 23-year-old L.A. man, with 'anti-government' leanings, is suspect in airport shooting 01 Nov 2013 A man armed with what police say was an assault rifle and carrying materials expressing anti-government sentiment opened fire Friday morning at Los Angeles International Airport, killing one person before being chased down himself, authorities said. Eyewitnesses said the suspect asked people, "Hey, are you TSA?" -- the acronym for the Transportation Security Administration -- according to a federal law enforcement official. If they said "no," he would move on. In the aftermath of the shooting, investigators found information on the suspect expressing not just anti-federal government sentiment but also anger at the TSA specifically, according to the federal law enforcement official.

Snowden Appeals to U.S. for Clemency

November 2, 2013 by legitgov

Snowden Appeals to U.S. for Clemency 02 Nov 2013 Edward J. Snowden, the fugitive American security contractor granted asylum by Russia, has appealed to Washington to stop treating him like a traitor for revealing that the United States has been eavesdropping on its allies, a German politician who met with Mr. Snowden said on Friday. The appeal came in a letter from Mr. Snowden carried to Berlin by Hans-Christian Ströbele, a veteran member of the Green Party in the German Parliament, who said that he and two journalists for German media met with Mr. Snowden and a person described as his assistant -- probably his British aide, Sarah Harrison -- at an undisclosed location in or near Moscow on Thursday for almost three hours. In his letter, Mr. Snowden, 30, also appealed for clemency.

TSA Agent Killed in Shooting at LA Airport

November 1, 2013 by legitgov

TSA Agent Killed in Shooting at LA Airport --TSA officials told NBC4 the shooting occurred at a security checkpoint 01 Nov 2013 A Transportation Security Administration agent was shot and killed and another security agent was wounded Friday when a gunman opened fire at a security checkpoint at Los Angeles International Airport, NBC News is reporting. At least one other person was injured in the shooting, which occurred Friday morning inside the Tom Bradley Terminal and prompted evacuations, street closures and a ground-stop order for all incoming flights at the nation's third-largest airport.

GCHQ and European spy agencies worked together on mass surveillance

November 1, 2013 by legitgov

GCHQ and European spy agencies worked together on mass surveillance --Edward Snowden papers unmask close technical cooperation and loose alliance between British, German, French, Spanish and Swedish spy agencies 01 Nov 2013 The German, French, Spanish and Swedish intelligence services have all developed methods of mass surveillance of internet and phone traffic over the past five years in close partnership with Britain's GCHQ eavesdropping agency. The bulk monitoring is carried out through direct taps into fibre optic cables and the development of covert relationships with telecommunications companies. A loose but growing eavesdropping alliance has allowed intelligence agencies from one country to cultivate ties with corporations from another to facilitate the trawling of the web, according to GCHQ documents leaked by the former US intelligence contractor Edward Snowden.

Gunfire, chaos erupt at LAX

November 1, 2013 by legitgov

Gunfire, chaos erupt at LAX --TSA agent shot, gunman arrested; flights grounded --A man armed with a rifle opens fire at the airport leaving several wounded. Police are flooding the airport and Terminals 2 and 3 are being evacuated. 01 Nov 2013 [Holy coincidence, Batman! I guess we're not talking about NSA surveillance or food stamp cuts any more, right?]

47M Americans hit by food stamp cuts starting today

November 1, 2013 by legitgov

GOP, Obama's war on poor continues: 47M Americans hit by food stamp cuts starting today --Cutbacks amount to loss of 21 meals per month for family of four 01 Nov 2013 Food stamp benefits will be cut to more than 47 million Americans starting Friday as a temporary boost to the federal program comes to an end without a new budget from a deadlocked Congress to replace it. Under the program, known formally as the Supplemental Nutrition and Assistance Program, or SNAP, a family of four that gets $668 per month in benefits will find that amount cut by $36. SNAP, which benefits one in seven Americans, is administered by the Department of Agriculture and is authorized in a five-year omnibus farm bill covering all agricultural programs.

1 dead, multiple victims in LAX shooting spree

November 1, 2013 by legitgov

1 dead, multiple victims in LAX shooting spree 01 Nov 2013 A lone gunman armed with a semi-automatic rifle went on a shooting spree Friday at Los Angeles International Airport, killing a TSA employee and leaving at least 6 people injured before the suspect was tracked down and taken into custody. Tim Kauffman, a spokesman for the American Federation of Government Employees in Washington, confirmed to the Associated Press that a Transportation Security Administration officer was killed. He said the union's information came from their local officials in Los Angeles.

Bomb explosion kills four Afghan kids in Wardak

November 1, 2013 by legitgov

Bomb explosion kills four Afghan kids in Wardak 01 Nov 2013 Four children have been killed and another wounded in a bomb explosion in Afghanistan’s eastern Province of Wardak, Press TV reports. The bomb detonated on Thursday in Salar village, in the Sayed Abad district of Wardak, said provincial governor’s spokesman Attaullah Khogyani. Khogyani said the minor victims had taken the bomb home and were playing with it when the device went off.

US drone strike kills four in NW Pakistan

November 1, 2013 by legitgov

US drone strike kills four in NW Pakistan 01 Nov 2013 Another unauthorized drone strike by the US forces in the Pakistani tribal area of North Waziristan, has killed at least four people and injured several others, local intelligence officials say.

Exposed: Australia's Asia spy network

November 1, 2013 by legitgov

Exposed: Australia's Asia spy network 31 Oct 2013 Australian embassies are being secretly used to intercept phone calls and data across Asia as part of a US-led global spying network, according to whistleblower Edward Snowden and a former Australian intelligence officer. The top secret Defence Signals Directorate operates the clandestine surveillance facilities at embassies without the knowledge of most Australian diplomats. Codenamed STATEROOM, the program involves the interception of radio, telecommunications and internet traffic.

Australia Said to Play Part in N.S.A. Effort

November 1, 2013 by legitgov

Australia Said to Play Part in N.S.A. Effort 01 Nov 2013 Australia, a close ally of the United States, has used its embassies in Asia to collect intelligence as part of the National Security Agency's global surveillance efforts, according to a document leaked by the former agency contractor Edward J. Snowden and published this week in the German newsmagazine Der Spiegel. The N.S.A. program was called Stateroom, and was operated by the Australian Defense Signals Directorate, Der Spiegel quoted the N.S.A. document as saying.

Texas court reinstates controversial abortion law three days after it was ruled unconstitutional

November 1, 2013 by legitgov

Texas court reinstates controversial abortion law three days after it was ruled unconstitutional 31 Oct 2013 Texas appeals court has reinstated most of the state's new abortion rules today only three days after a judge ruled part of the measures was unnecessary. The federal appeals court ruling means up to 12 clinics will be unable to perform terminations as soon as Friday. A panel of judges at the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals issued the ruling just days after District Judge Lee Yeakel said one provision served no medical purpose.

Homeland Security workers routinely boost pay with unearned overtime, report says

November 1, 2013 by legitgov

Homeland Security workers routinely boost pay with unearned overtime, report says 31 Oct 2013 Federal employees at the Department of Homeland Security call it the “candy bowl,” a pot of overtime money they have long dipped into to pad their pay even if they haven’t earned it, whistleblowers say. This practice, which can add up to 25 percent to a paycheck, has become so routine over the last generation that it’s often held out as a perk when government managers try to recruit new employees, according to these accounts. In a report submitted to the White House and Congress on Thursday, the federal Office of Special Counsel (OSC) details what it calls a “profound and entrenched problem” at DHS and a “gross waste of government funds.”

Threat Diverts United Express Flight to Phoenix

November 1, 2013 by legitgov

Threat Diverts United Express Flight to Phoenix 31 Oct 2013 A United Express flight from San Francisco to San Antonio was diverted to Phoenix on Thursday because of a threat that authorities said came from aboard the plane. Officials at Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport said Flight 5573 landed at 4:45 p.m. Thursday and the 43 passengers, two pilots and two flight attendants aboard the regional jet were evacuated. Phoenix police spokesman Sgt. Steve Martos said "the reported threat was on the plane" but he couldn't provide any details.

Senate Committee Votes in Favor of NSA Phone-Records Snooping

October 31, 2013 by legitgov

Senate Committee Votes in Favor of NSA Phone-Records Snooping --Committee approves measure in private 31 Oct 2013 A key Senate committee approved today a measure that would give congressional blessing to the NSA's bulk collection of domestic telephone metadata, and bolster the legal underpinnings of the controversial snooping program. Sponsored by Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), the head of the Senate Intelligence Committee, the proposal sets the stage for a major legislative battle with a competing measure unveiled Tuesday prohibiting the data collection that began in 2006 and was first disclosed by whistleblower Edward Snowden in June.

U.S. Court Blocks Ruling on NY Police Stop-Frisk Policy

October 31, 2013 by legitgov

U.S. Court Blocks Ruling on NY Police Stop-Frisk Policy 31 Oct 2013 A federal appeals court on Thursday blocked a judge's ruling that found the New York Police Department's stop-and-frisk policy was discriminatory and took the unusual step of removing her from the case, saying interviews she gave during the trial called her impartiality into question. The 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Manhattan said the rulings by U.S. District Judge Shira A. Scheindlin will be stayed pending the outcome of an appeal by the city.

Manning says gender ID dispute could go to court

October 31, 2013 by legitgov

Manning says gender ID dispute could go to court 31 Oct 2013 Imprisoned documents leaker Chelsea Manning says she'll go to court, if necessary, to receive treatment for gender identity disorder, also known as gender dysphoria. The Private Manning Support Network published on its website Wednesday four letters signed by the Army private formerly known as Bradley Manning. In one letter, Manning says defense attorney David Coombs is helping her seek treatment for gender dysphoria. The military has said it does not provide treatment for gender dysphoria.

Group Petitions Senate to Prevent Mass Transportation of Nuclear High-Level Radioactive Waste

October 31, 2013 by legitgov

Group Petitions Senate to Prevent Mass Transportation of Nuclear High-Level Radioactive Waste 31 Oct 2013 Yesterday, a national environmental group and more than 42,000 individuals delivered a message to the U.S. Senate, urging the Energy and Natural Resources Committee to cancel plans for legislation that would begin mass transportation of high-level radioactive waste throughout the country. Nuclear Information & Resource Service (NIRS) coordinated the national petition drive over concerns that the proposed bill, S.B. 1240, neglects the safety of radioactive waste storage in communities hosting nuclear power sites. S.B. 1240, the Nuclear Waste Administration Act of 2013, was introduced earlier this year by Senate Energy Committee chairman Ron Wyden (D-OR) and Sen. Murkowski (R-AK), Sen. Feinstein (D-CA) and Sen. Alexander (R-TN). It would encourage the siting of "consolidated interim storage" facilities to house the nation's stockpile of irradiated nuclear reactor fuel until one or more final repositories for it are eventually developed.

Senate Republicans Block Two Obama Nominees

October 31, 2013 by legitgov

Senate Republicans Block Two Obama Nominees 31 Oct 2013 Senate Republicans on Thursday thwarted the confirmation of two of President Obama's nominees, one to a powerful appeals court and another to a home-lending oversight post, setting up a confrontation with Democrats that could escalate into a larger fight over limiting the filibuster and restrict how far the minority party can go to block a president's agenda. In a series of swift back-to-back votes, Republicans first blocked the nomination of Representative Melvin Watt, Democrat of North Carolina, to become the director of the Federal Housing Finance Agency -- a rare affront to a sitting member of Congress who has an extensive record of public service.

Northern Long-Eared Bats Need Protections

October 31, 2013 by legitgov

Northern Long-Eared Bats Need Protections 31 Oct 2013 A deadly and mysterious disease called "white-nose syndrome" has killed almost six million bats since first seen in 2006. Northern long-eared bats in particular have been devastated. Populations in the Northeast have declined by 99 percent in less than 8 years! (Petition)

Japan lawmaker breaks taboo with Fukushima nuclear fears letter for emperor

October 31, 2013 by legitgov

Japan lawmaker breaks taboo with Fukushima nuclear fears letter for emperor 31 Oct 2013 A Japanese lawmaker handed Emperor Akihito a letter on Thursday expressing fear about the health impact of the Fukushima nuclear disaster, breaking a taboo by trying to involve the emperor in politics. Taro Yamamoto, who is also an anti-nuclear activist, gave Akihito the letter during a garden party. "I wanted to directly tell the emperor of the current situation," Yamamoto told reporters, referring to the crisis at the Fukushima nuclear plant north of Tokyo, which has been leaking radioactivity since March 2011.

U.S. to allow expanded electronic device use on flights

October 31, 2013 by legitgov

U.S. to allow expanded electronic device use on flights 31 Oct 2013 The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) said on Thursday it will allow airlines to expand the use of portable electronic devices in flight to include smartphones, tablets and e-readers, ending a long-standing ban. "Most commercial airlines can tolerate radio interference from portable electronic devices," FAA Administrator Michael Huerta said at a news conference at Reagan National Airport near Washington, D.C. "It's safe to read downloaded materials, like e-books, calendars and to play games."

Snowden to work for major Russian website - lawyer

October 31, 2013 by legitgov

Snowden to work for major Russian website - lawyer 31 Oct 2013 Former US spy agency contractor, Edward Snowden, is set to start working for an Internet site in Russia, according to his Russian lawyer. The name of the website hasn't been disclosed for "security reasons." "Edward starts work in November. He will provide support for a major Russian site," lawyer Anatoly Kucherena said, as quoted by RIA-Novosti news agency. Kucherena added that Snowden is set to start his new job on Friday.

EU lawmakers condemn US spying on citizens, leaders

October 31, 2013 by legitgov

EU lawmakers condemn US spying on citizens, leaders 31 Oct 2013 Members of the European Parliament have condemned the United States for widespread spying on European citizens and leaders. The nine-member European Union (EU) delegation met with US officials on Wednesday to seek a response to allegations of the US National Security Agency (NSA)'s massive cyber espionage activities against EU citizens and governments, including German Chancellor Angela Merkel. The European officials met in the White House with senior US government and intelligence officials, including Lisa Monaco, President Barack Obama's homeland security and counterterrorism adviser.

States' insurance exchange websites cost taxpayers $1B

October 31, 2013 by legitgov

States' insurance exchange websites cost taxpayers $1B --Contractors often paid to do same job in different states 31 Oct 2013 HealthCare.gov, the federal Obamacare website, isn't the only website with issues following the rollout of the Affordable Care Act. There are also problems in the states that set up their own websites using taxpayer dollars. Sources tell CBS News that the 15 states that have set up their own insurance exchanges used more than $1 billion to pay for their own Obamacare websites. That huge price tag, CBS News reported, is being paid for by the federal government -- courtesy of taxpayers -- and some of these websites have also struggled to get off the ground.

NSA denies report it eavesdropped on Vatican

October 31, 2013 by legitgov

NSA denies report it eavesdropped on Vatican [Insert eye roll *here.*] 31 Oct 2013 The National Security Agency is denying a report that it eavesdropped on Vatican phone calls when it was considering a successor for Pope Benedict XVI. Before the Italian magazine, Panorama, published the report, it issued a press release that read "NSA had tapped the pope," according to Reuters. The eavesdropping was on calls from inside and outside the Vatican and reportedly spanned a few weeks from December 10, 2012 to January 8, 2013.

Torture complaints ignored at Guantanamo Bay, attorney says

October 31, 2013 by legitgov

Torture complaints ignored at Guantanamo Bay, attorney says 23 Oct 2013 A man accused of aiding the September 11 attacks [aka inside job] suffered a serious head injury while imprisoned by the CIA, his attorney told a war crimes tribunal on Wednesday, raising questions about whether the United States violated international law against torture. The evidence was presented during the second day of a pre-trial hearing at the Guantanamo Bay detention facility in Cuba for five of the U.S. military's most "high value" detainees. Ammar al-Baluchi suffers ongoing health problems from what he and the other defendants say was torture while he was being held in CIA custody between 2003 and 2006, according to his attorney, James Connell.

OPCW: Syria destroys chemical arms equipment

October 31, 2013 by legitgov

OPCW: Syria destroys chemical arms equipment 31 Oct 2013 Syria has completed destruction of critical equipment for producing chemical weapons and filling munitions with poison gas, the global chemical weapons watchdog said Thursday. The announcement by the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons came one day ahead of the Nov. 1 deadline set by the Hague-based organization for Damascus to destroy or "render inoperable" all chemical weapon production facilities and machinery for mixing chemicals into poison gas and filling munitions. [Time for the US to destroy theirs.]

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