IN POST NDAA AMERIKA, WHAT IS A TERRORIST AND WHO CAN MAKE YOU DISAPPEAR BY CALLING YOU ONE?
Since corporate fascist puppet president Barack Obama signed the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2012 into law this past New Year’s Eve (NDAA: Public Law 112-81), the powers of indefinite detention claimed under the post-9/11 Authorization for Use of Military Force Act (AUMF: Public Law 107-40) have been codified. Now the mere suspicion of being a “terrorist” is sufficient grounds for an American citizen – on American soil – to be arrested and detained indefinitely without charge or trial. Obvious questions of constitutionality aside, this should prompt at least the cautious to ask questions like the following:
1. What is the legal definition of “terrorist”?
2. Who can make you disappear by calling you one?
To answer the first question, we searched the online version of the United States Code – “the codification of the general and permanent laws of the United States” – for a definition of “terrorist”. And to our amazement, we didn’t find one. Over 400 references to “terrorist” in the USC, yes. But a specific definition, no. What we did find is this:
Title 8 Section 1182(a)(3)(B) defines “terrorist activity” but not “terrorist”:
(iii) “Terrorist activity” defined As used in this chapter, the term “terrorist activity” means any activity which is unlawful under the laws of the place where it is committed (or which, if it had been committed in the United States, would be unlawful under the laws of the United States or any State) and which involves any of the following: (I) The highjacking or sabotage of any conveyance (including an aircraft, vessel, or vehicle). (II) The seizing or detaining, and threatening to kill, injure, or continue to detain, another individual in order to compel a third person (including a governmental organization) to do or abstain from doing any act as an explicit or implicit condition for the release of the individual seized or detained. (III) A violent attack upon an internationally protected person (as defined in section 1116(b)(4) of title 18) or upon the liberty of such a person. (IV) An assassination. (V) The use of any – (a) biological agent, chemical agent, or nuclear weapon or device, or (b) explosive, firearm, or other weapon or dangerous device (other than for mere personal monetary gain), with intent to endanger, directly or indirectly, the safety of one or more individuals or to cause substantial damage to property. (VI) A threat, attempt, or conspiracy to do any of the foregoing. (iv) “Engage in terrorist activity” defined As used in this chapter, the term “engage in terrorist activity” means, in an individual capacity or as a member of an organization – (I) to commit or to incite to commit, under circumstances indicating an intention to cause death or serious bodily injury, a terrorist activity; (II) to prepare or plan a terrorist activity; (III) to gather information on potential targets for terrorist activity; (IV) to solicit funds or other things of value for – (aa) a terrorist activity; (bb) a terrorist organization described in clause (vi)(I) or (vi)(II); or (cc) a terrorist organization described in clause (vi)(III), unless the solicitor can demonstrate by clear and convincing evidence that he did not know, and should not reasonably have known, that the organization was a terrorist organization;
(V) to solicit any individual – (aa) to engage in conduct otherwise described in this subsection; (bb) for membership in a terrorist organization described in clause (vi)(I) or (vi)(II); or (cc) for membership in a terrorist organization described in clause (vi)(III) unless the solicitor can demonstrate by clear and convincing evidence that he did not know, and should not reasonably have known, that the organization was a terrorist organization; or
(VI) to commit an act that the actor knows, or reasonably should know, affords material support, including a safe house, transportation, communications, funds, transfer of funds or other material financial benefit, false documentation or identification, weapons (including chemical, biological, or radiological weapons), explosives, or training – (aa) for the commission of a terrorist activity; (bb) to any individual who the actor knows, or reasonably should know, has committed or plans to commit a terrorist activity; (cc) to a terrorist organization described in subclause (I) or (II) of clause (vi) or to any member of such an organization; or (dd) to a terrorist organization described in clause (vi)(III), or to any member of such an organization, unless the actor can demonstrate by clear and convincing evidence that the actor did not know, and should not reasonably have known, that the organization was a terrorist organization. (v) “Representative” defined As used in this paragraph, the term “representative” includes an officer, official, or spokesman of an organization, and any person who directs, counsels, commands, or induces an organization or its members to engage in terrorist activity. (vi) “Terrorist organization” defined As used in this section, the term “terrorist organization” means an organization – (I) designated under section 1189 of this title; (II) otherwise designated, upon publication in the Federal Register, by the Secretary of State in consultation with or upon the request of the Attorney General or the Secretary of Homeland Security, as a terrorist organization, after finding that the organization engages in the activities described in subclauses (I) through (VI) of clause (iv); or (III) that is a group of two or more individuals, whether organized or not, which engages in, or has a subgroup which engages in, the activities described in subclauses (I) through (VI) of clause (iv).
Title 18 Section 2331 defines “international terrorism” and “domestic terrorism” [READ CLOSELY] but not “terrorist”:
As used in this chapter- (1) the term “international terrorism” means activities that- (A) involve violent acts or acts dangerous to human life that are a violation of the criminal laws of the United States or of any State, or that would be a criminal violation if committed within the jurisdiction of the United States or of any State; (B) appear to be intended- (i) to intimidate or coerce a civilian population; (ii) to influence the policy of a government by intimidation or coercion; or (iii) to affect the conduct of a government by mass destruction, assassination, or kidnapping; and (C) occur primarily outside the territorial jurisdiction of the United States, or transcend national boundaries in terms of the means by which they are accomplished, the persons they appear intended to intimidate or coerce, or the locale in which their perpetrators operate or seek asylum; (2) the term “national of the United States” has the meaning given such term in section 101(a)(22) of the Immigration and Nationality Act; (3) the term “person” means any individual or entity capable of holding a legal or beneficial interest in property; (4) the term “act of war” means any act occurring in the course of- (A) declared war; (B) armed conflict, whether or not war has been declared, between two or more nations; or (C) armed conflict between military forces of any origin; and (5) the term “domestic terrorism” means activities that- (A) involve acts dangerous to human life that are a violation of the criminal laws of the United States or of any State; (B) appear to be intended- (i) to intimidate or coerce a civilian population; (ii) to influence the policy of a government by intimidation or coercion; or (iii) to affect the conduct of a government by mass destruction, assassination, or kidnapping; and (C) occur primarily within the territorial jurisdiction of the United States.
Title 22 Section 2656f(d) defines “international terrorism”, “terrorism”, “terrorist group” and “terrorist sanctuary” but not “terrorist”:
(d) Definitions As used in this section- (1) the term “international terrorism” means terrorism involving citizens or the territory of more than 1 country; (2) the term “terrorism” means premeditated, politically motivated violence perpetrated against noncombatant targets by subnational groups or clandestine agents; (3) the term “terrorist group” means any group practicing, or which has significant subgroups which practice, international terrorism; (4) the terms “territory” and “territory of the country” mean the land, waters, and airspace of the country; and (5) the terms “terrorist sanctuary” and “sanctuary” mean an area in the territory of the country- (A) that is used by a terrorist or terrorist organization- (i) to carry out terrorist activities, including training, fundraising, financing, and recruitment; or (ii) as a transit point; and (B) the government of which expressly consents to, or with knowledge, allows, tolerates, or disregards such use of its territory and is not subject to a determination under- (i) section 2405(j)(1)(A) of the Appendix to title 50; (ii) section 2371 (a) of this title; or (iii) section 2780 (d) of this title.
I’m no attorney and I don’t play one on television. But after reading the above, it seems to me that the short answer to the question “What is the legal definition of terrorist?” is “That depends.”
Now on to the second question: Who can make you disappear by calling you one?
According to the Washington Post’s TOP SECRET AMERICA project, there are “45 government organizations (for example, the FBI) engaged in top-secret work [that can] be broken down into 1,271 sub-units (for example, the Terrorist Screening Center of the FBI).” I’m pretty sure they can. But they also mention “4,058 government organizations involved in domestic counterterrorism and homeland security” including 2,880 federal organizations that work at the state level, such as the FBI’s Joint Terrorism Task Forces (JTTFs), plus 818 state and 360 local organizations. I’m pretty sure they can, too. And then of course there’s the “1,931 companies engaged in top-secret work for the government.” I’d wager some or all of them can, as well.
And that’s not all. We also have to consider the Nationwide Suspicious Activity Reporting Initiative (NSI):
Using NaSI SARs (Suspicious Activity Reports), just about anyone can drop the dime the makes you disappear: a hateful former spouse, a jealous or jilted lover, that co-worker you’re always competing with, or maybe just a nosey neighbor. All they have to do is fill out one of these forms and click “Submit”:
Our thanks to the OccupyWallSt.org Forum and Reddit r/Politics posters who contributed to the research for this release:
NO MORE LEFT. NO MORE RIGHT. TIME TO UNITE. STAND AND FIGHT!
Tag: #terrorist, #terrorists, #terrorism, #aumf, #ndaa, #bigbrother, #fascism, #fascist, #fascists, #ows, #vvvpr
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