Just about now, the spring 2010 Global Justice Information Sharing Initiative (Global) Advisory Committee (GAC) has concluded their bi-annual meeting on global information sharing that begins at the local level.
The GAC met in October of last year.
Some of what was discussed included AG Eric Holder's commitment "in getting the Global message out," DHS's concern in sustaining funding for fusion centers (of which there is currently no Congressional oversight), and of particular note, the Nationwide SAR (Suspicious Activity Report) Intiative:
a historic partnership among local,state, tribal and federal agencies (including BJA, DOJ, DHS, FBI,and the US Department of Defense). The NSI establishesa national capacity to accomplish what law enforcement agencies have been trying have been doing for years --gathering information regarding behaviors and incidents associated with crime to, "connect the dots" -- and establishes a standardized approach to sharing information with the goals of detecting and preventing criminal activity, including terrorism-related activities .. [by] developing relationship among police, fusion centers, and the communities they serve (particularly immigrant and minority communities) to best address the challenges of crime control and prevention of terrorism.
Additionally, with the same goal of informing and integrating the community in prevention efforts .. a video in support of the iWATCH, a community awareness program created to educate the public about behaviors and activities that may indicate terrorism [was shown].
Gathering information regarding behaviors.
Goals of detecting and preventing criminal activity including terrorism-related activites.
In ways to address crime control and prevention of terrorism.
You and I are participating in a massive social experiment at the behest of the Justice Deparment and the Executive Office.
Since the Obama Administration has declared there is no longer a War on Terror and has decided to ban the use of the terms "radical jihadist" and "Islamic extremist", will the newly defined threat to the state be thought of in terms of political and racial ideology? Political terrorism to replace what was once thought of as religious-based terrorism?
Why does the Department of Homeland Security continue to exist if the United States has eliminated the WOT?
And if there is no longer exists a hunt for terrorism, why are there information-gathering mechanisms in place to "control" and "prevent" crime? Is monitoring pre-crime their target? Pre-crime by whom? You and I?
Considering today's political environment, the tea party movement or other "homegrown radicalizations" surely would have been mentioned at today's GAC meeting.
Perhaps they discussed the methods of "new chatter" through social media, and how you and I may have inadvertantly incited a "flash mob" when we retweeted or updated our Facebook pages.
I look forward to reading about this in the New York Times.
Trasparency we can hope for, if Freedom of the Press still exists.