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From the people that brought you Gitmo

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From the people that brought you Gitmo


Halliburton affiliate tabbed to build immigration jails


by Mason Stockstill


February 5, 2006


Inland Valley Daily Bulletin


A Houston-based construction firm with ties to the White House has been awarded an open-ended contract to build immigration detention centers that could total $385 million a move that some critics called questionable.


The contract calls for KBR, a subsidiary of oil engineering and construction giant Halliburton, to build temporary detention facilities in the event of an "immigration emergency," according to U.S. officials.


"If, for example, there were some sort of upheaval in another country that would cause mass migration, that's the type of situation that this contract would address," said Jamie Zuieback of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement. "Essentially, this is a contingency contract."


Under the contract, which was awarded by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, KBR could also be tasked to operate one or more temporary detention facilities, and to develop a plan for responding to a natural disaster in which ICE personnel participate in relief efforts. The contract, which does not specify locations for the detention facilities, is good for one year, with the option for four, one-year extensions.


The open-ended nature of the contract described as "indefinite delivery/indefinite quantity" raises concerns about overcharging and other potential abuse, said Charlie Cray, director of the Washington-based Center for Corporate Policy and a frequent Halliburton critic.


The Government Accounting Office has criticized both Halliburton and KBR for cost overruns and inappropriately obtaining government projects under a similar contingency-based program connected to reconstruction work in Iraq, Cray said. The companies' work in Iraq has ranged from providing meals for soldiers to planning for troops to occupy Iraqi oil fields.


Halliburton's billions of dollars in revenue from federal contracts, many of them awarded without competitive bidding, have made it a frequent target of critics who accuse the Bush administration of cronyism.


Vice President Dick Cheney is Halliburton's former CEO.


KBR also has faced allegations that, through subcontractors, it hired numerous illegal immigrants to perform rebuilding work in the Gulf Coast region following Hurricane Katrina, and paid them sub-minimum wages. The company's hiring practices in Iraq have come under scrutiny for the alleged exploitation of foreign workers.


But KBR officials said the contract for detention facilities is well-deserved, because of the firm's experience in building infrastructure and support networks for U.S. military and law enforcement.


KBR's revenues totaled $3 billion in the fourth quarter of 2005, according to company figures released Friday, and Halliburton plans to sell part of the subsidiary through an initial public offering in the coming months.


"We are especially gratified to be awarded this contract because it builds on our extremely strong track record in the arena of emergency operations support," said Bruce Stanski, KBR's vice president of government and infrastructure, in a statement.


There's no guarantee that any work will be performed under the contract; if no immigration emergency or natural disaster occurs, there won't be anything for KBR to do, said company spokeswoman Cathy Mann.


However, outside events have prompted large waves of migration in the past. Political upheaval and changes in immigration policy in nations such as Haiti, Cuba and Rwanda caused an influx of immigrants and refugees from those countries at different times.


Additionally, ICE is planning to increase the capacity of its detention facilities around the country, Zuieback said, particularly after Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff pledged to end the agency's unofficial "catch-and-release" policy for some illegal immigrants.


Because ICE's detention facilities are frequently full, there is nowhere to hold illegal immigrants who must go through an immigration hearing before they can be deported which include most immigrants from nations other than Mexico. In the past, those undocumented migrants have been issued an order to appear for their court date, and then simply released into the United States. Most of them never show up for the hearings.


While increasing the number of beds available in detention facilities would address the issue, Zuieback said the department also is working on agreements with several other countries that would allow the expedited deportation of illegal aliens from those nations without the requirement for a hearing in front of an immigration judge.


"Part of the reason why expedited removal is so important is you can create more beds by moving those people out of there faster," she said.


Mason Stockstill can be reached by e-mail at mason.stockstill@dailybulletin.com , or by phone at (909) 483-9354.

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Homeland Security Contracts for Vast New Detention Camps

by repost Friday, Feb. 24, 2006 at 12:03 AM



by Peter Dale Scott


BERKELEY, Calif.--A Halliburton subsidiary has just received a $385 million contract from the Department of Homeland Security to provide "temporary detention and processing capabilities."


The contract -- announced Jan. 24 by the engineering and construction firm KBR -- calls for preparing for "an emergency influx of immigrants, or to support the rapid development of new programs" in the event of other emergencies, such as "a natural disaster." The release offered no details about where Halliburton was to build these facilities, or when.


To date, some newspapers have worried that open-ended provisions in the contract could lead to cost overruns, such as have occurred with KBR in Iraq. A Homeland Security spokesperson has responded that this is a "contingency contract" and that conceivably no centers might be built. But almost no paper so far has discussed the possibility that detention centers could be used to detain American citizens if the Bush administration were to declare martial law.


For those who follow covert government operations abroad and at home, the contract evoked ominous memories of Oliver North's controversial Rex-84 "readiness exercise" in 1984. This called for the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to round up and detain 400,000 imaginary "refugees," in the context of "uncontrolled population movements" over the Mexican border into the United States. North's activities raised civil liberties concerns in both Congress and the Justice Department. The concerns persist.


"Almost certainly this is preparation for a roundup after the next 9/11 for Mid-Easterners, Muslims and possibly dissenters," says Daniel Ellsberg, a former military analyst who in 1971 released the Pentagon Papers, the U.S. military's account of its activities in Vietnam. "They've already done this on a smaller scale, with the 'special registration' detentions of immigrant men from Muslim countries, and with Guantanamo."


Plans for detention facilities or camps have a long history, going back to fears in the 1970s of a national uprising by black militants. As Alonzo Chardy reported in the Miami Herald on July 5, 1987, an executive order for continuity of government (COG) had been drafted in 1982 by FEMA head Louis Giuffrida. The order called for "suspension of the Constitution" and "declaration of martial law." The martial law portions of the plan were outlined in a memo by Giuffrida's deputy, John Brinkerhoff.


In 1985, President Reagan signed National Security Decision Directive 188, one of a series of directives that authorized continued planning for COG by a private parallel government.


Two books, James Mann's "Rise of the Vulcans" and James Bamford's "A Pretext for War," have revealed that in the 1980s this parallel structure, operating outside normal government channels, included the then-head of G. D. Searle and Co., Donald Rumsfeld, and then-Congressman from Wyoming Dick Cheney.


After 9/11, new martial law plans began to surface similar to those of FEMA in the 1980s. In January 2002 the Pentagon submitted a proposal for deploying troops on American streets. One month later John Brinkerhoff, the author of the 1982 FEMA memo, published an article arguing for the legality of using U.S. troops for purposes of domestic security.


Then in April 2002, Defense Dept. officials implemented a plan for domestic U.S. military operations by creating a new U.S. Northern Command (CINC-NORTHCOM) for the continental United States. Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld called this "the most sweeping set of changes since the unified command system was set up in 1946."


The NORTHCOM commander, Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld announced, is responsible for "homeland defense and also serves as head of the North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD).... He will command U.S. forces that operate within the United States in support of civil authorities. The command will provide civil support not only in response to attacks, but for natural disasters."


John Brinkerhoff later commented on PBS that, "The United States itself is now for the first time since the War of 1812 a theater of war. That means that we should apply, in my view, the same kind of command structure in the United States that we apply in other theaters of war."


Then in response to Hurricane Katrina in Sept. 2005, according to the Washington Post, White House senior adviser Karl Rove told the governor of Louisiana, Kathleen Babineaux Blanco, that she should explore legal options to impose martial law "or as close as we can get." The White House tried vigorously, but ultimately failed, to compel Gov. Blanco to yield control of the state National Guard.


Also in September, NORTHCOM conducted its highly classified Granite Shadow exercise in Washington. As William Arkin reported in the Washington Post, "Granite Shadow is yet another new Top Secret and compartmented operation related to the military's extra-legal powers regarding weapons of mass destruction. It allows for emergency military operations in the United States without civilian supervision or control."


It is clear that the Bush administration is thinking seriously about martial law. Many critics have alleged that FEMA's spectacular failure to respond to Katrina followed from a deliberate White House policy: of paring back FEMA, and instead strengthening the military for responses to disasters.


A multimillion program for detention facilities will greatly increase NORTHCOM's ability to respond to any domestic disorders.


Scott is author of "Drugs, Oil, and War: The United States in Afghanistan, Colombia, and Indochina" (Rowman & Littlefield, 2003). He is completing a book on "The Road to 9/11." Visit his Web site.

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"As nightfall does not come at once, neither does oppression. In both instances, there's a twilight where everything remains seemingly unchanged, and it is in such twilight that we all must be aware of change in the air, however slight, lest we become victims of the darkness." : Justice William O. Douglas



Only a totalitarian society would even claim absolute safety as a worthy ideal, because it would require total state control over its citizens' lives. Freedom is not defined by safety. Freedom is defined by the ability of citizens to live without government interference: US Congressman Ron Paul, in his "Texas Straight Talk" column, August 2004

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there never can be total security for anyone at any time, people die violently, people die in theyre sleep, great societies always fall. life goes on, jesus if i lived in a country where all i heard about all the time was war, and fear and terrorism, id move to canada. luckily....

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Bush's Mysterious 'New Programs'

by repost Sunday, Feb. 26, 2006 at 9:02 AM



Is the Pentagon building U.S.-based prison camps for Muslim immigrants? Evidence points to the possibility.



By Nat Parry, Consortium News

Posted on February 23, 2006, Printed on February 26, 2006


Not that George W. Bush needs much encouragement, but Sen. Lindsey Graham suggested to Attorney General Alberto Gonzales a new target for the administration's domestic operations -- Fifth Columnists, supposedly disloyal Americans who sympathize and collaborate with the enemy.


"The administration has not only the right, but the duty, in my opinion, to pursue Fifth Column movements," Graham, R-S.C., told Gonzales during Senate Judiciary Committee hearings on Feb. 6.


"I stand by this president's ability, inherent to being commander in chief, to find out about Fifth Column movements, and I don't think you need a warrant to do that," Graham added, volunteering to work with the administration to draft guidelines for how best to neutralize this alleged threat.


"Senator," a smiling Gonzales responded, "the president already said we'd be happy to listen to your ideas."


In less paranoid times, Graham's comments might be viewed by many Americans as a Republican trying to have it both ways -- ingratiating himself to an administration of his own party while seeking some credit from Washington centrists for suggesting Congress should have at least a tiny say in how Bush runs the War on Terror.


But recent developments suggest that the Bush administration may already be contemplating what to do with Americans who are deemed insufficiently loyal or who disseminate information that may be considered helpful to the enemy. Top U.S. officials have cited the need to challenge news that undercuts Bush's actions as a key front in defeating the terrorists, who are aided by "news informers," in the words of Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld.


Detention centers


Plus, there was that curious development in January when the Army Corps of Engineers awarded Halliburton subsidiary Kellogg Brown & Root a $385 million contract to construct detention centers somewhere in the United States, to deal with "an emergency influx of immigrants into the U.S., or to support the rapid development of new programs," KBR said.


Later, the New York Times reported that "KBR would build the centers for the Homeland Security Department for an unexpected influx of immigrants, to house people in the event of a natural disaster or for new programs that require additional detention space."


Like most news stories on the KBR contract, the Times focused on concerns about Halliburton's reputation for bilking U.S. taxpayers by overcharging for sub-par services. "It's hard to believe that the administration has decided to entrust Halliburton with even more taxpayer dollars," remarked Rep. Henry Waxman, D-Calif.


Less attention centered on the phrase "rapid development of new programs" and what kind of programs would require a major expansion of detention centers, each capable of holding 5,000 people. Jamie Zuieback, a spokeswoman for Immigration and Customs Enforcement, declined to elaborate on what these "new programs" might be.


Only a few independent journalists, such as Peter Dale Scott and Maureen Farrell, have pursued what the Bush administration might actually be thinking.


Scott speculated that the "detention centers could be used to detain American citizens if the Bush administration were to declare martial law." He recalled that during the Reagan administration, National Security Council aide Oliver North organized Rex-84 "readiness exercise," which contemplated the Federal Emergency Management Agency rounding up and detaining 400,000 "refugees," in the event of "uncontrolled population movements" over the Mexican border into the United States.


Farrell pointed out that because "another terror attack is all but certain, it seems far more likely that the centers would be used for post-911-type detentions of immigrants rather than a sudden deluge" of immigrants flooding across the border.


Vietnam-era whistleblower Daniel Ellsberg said, "Almost certainly this is preparation for a roundup after the next 9/11 for Mid-Easterners, Muslims and possibly dissenters. They've already done this on a smaller scale, with the 'special registration' detentions of immigrant men from Muslim countries, and with Guantanamo."


Labor camps


There also was another little-noticed item posted at the U.S. Army website, about the Pentagon's Civilian Inmate Labor Program. This program "provides Army policy and guidance for establishing civilian inmate labor programs and civilian prison camps on Army installations."


The Army document, first drafted in 1997, underwent a "rapid action revision" on Jan. 14, 2005. The revision provides a "template for developing agreements" between the Army and corrections facilities for the use of civilian inmate labor on Army installations.


On its face, the Army's labor program refers to inmates housed in federal, state and local jails. The Army also cites various federal laws that govern the use of civilian labor and provide for the establishment of prison camps in the United States, including a federal statute that authorizes the attorney general to "establish, equip, and maintain camps upon sites selected by him" and "make available … the services of United States prisoners" to various government departments, including the Department of Defense.


Though the timing of the document's posting -- within the past few weeks -- may just be a coincidence, the reference to a "rapid action revision" and the KBR contract's contemplation of "rapid development of new programs" has raised eyebrows about why this sudden need for urgency.


These developments also are drawing more attention now because of earlier Bush administration policies to involve the Pentagon in "counter-terrorism" operations inside the United States.


Pentagon surveillance


Despite the Posse Comitatus Act's prohibitions against U.S. military personnel engaging in domestic law enforcement, the Pentagon has expanded its operations beyond previous boundaries, such as its role in domestic surveillance activities.


The Washington Post has reported that since the Sept. 11, 2001, terror attacks, the Defense Department has been creating new agencies that gather and analyze intelligence within the United States.


The White House also is moving to expand the power of the Pentagon's Counterintelligence Field Activity (CIFA), created three years ago to consolidate counterintelligence operations. The White House proposal would transform CIFA into an office that has authority to investigate crimes such as treason, terrorist sabotage or economic espionage.


The Pentagon also has pushed legislation in Congress that would create an intelligence exception to the Privacy Act, allowing the FBI and others to share information about U.S. citizens with the Pentagon, CIA and other intelligence agencies. But some in the Pentagon don't seem to think that new laws are even necessary.


In a 2001 Defense Department memo that surfaced in January 2005, the U.S. Army's top intelligence officer wrote, "Contrary to popular belief, there is no absolute ban on [military] intelligence components collecting U.S. person information."


Drawing a distinction between "collecting" information and "receiving" information on U.S. citizens, the memo argued that "MI [military intelligence] may receive information from anyone, anytime."


This receipt of information presumably would include data from the National Security Agency, which has been engaging in surveillance of U.S. citizens without court-approved warrants in apparent violation of the Foreign Intelligence Security Act. Bush approved the program of warrantless wiretaps shortly after 9/11.


There also may be an even more extensive surveillance program. Former NSA employee Russell D. Tice told a congressional committee on Feb. 14 that such a top-secret surveillance program existed, but he said he couldn't discuss the details without breaking classification laws.


Tice added that the "special access" surveillance program may be violating the constitutional rights of millions of Americans. With this expanded surveillance, the government's list of terrorist suspects is rapidly swelling.


The Washington Post reported on Feb. 15 that the National Counterterrorism Center's central repository now holds the names of 325,000 terrorist suspects, a fourfold increase since the fall of 2003. Asked whether the names in the repository were collected through the NSA's domestic surveillance program, an NCTC official told the Post, "Our database includes names of known and suspected international terrorists provided by all intelligence community organizations, including NSA."


Homeland defense


As the administration scoops up more and more names, members of Congress also have questioned the elasticity of Bush's definitions for words like terrorist "affiliates," used to justify wiretapping Americans allegedly in contact with such people or entities.


During the Senate Judiciary Committee's hearing on the wiretap program, Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., complained that the House and Senate Intelligence committees "have not been briefed on the scope and nature of the program."


Feinstein added that, therefore, the committees "have not been able to explore what is a link or an affiliate to al-Qaida or what minimization procedures (for purging the names of innocent people) are in place."


The combination of the Bush administration's expansive reading of its own power and its insistence on extraordinary secrecy has raised the alarm of civil libertarians when contemplating how far the Pentagon might go in involving itself in domestic matters.


A Defense Department document, entitled the "Strategy for Homeland Defense and Civil Support," has set out a military strategy against terrorism that envisions an "active, layered defense" both inside and outside U.S. territory. In the document, the Pentagon pledges to "transform U.S. military forces to execute homeland defense missions in the … U.S. homeland."


The Pentagon strategy paper calls for increased military reconnaissance and surveillance to "defeat potential challengers before they threaten the United States." The plan "maximizes threat awareness and seizes the initiative from those who would harm us."


But there are concerns over how the Pentagon judges "threats" and who falls under the category "those who would harm us." A Pentagon official said the Counterintelligence Field Activity's TALON program has amassed files on antiwar protesters.


In December 2005, NBC News revealed the existence of a secret 400-page Pentagon document listing 1,500 "suspicious incidents" over a 10-month period, including dozens of small antiwar demonstrations that were classified as a "threat."


The Defense Department also might be moving toward legitimizing the use of propaganda domestically, as part of its overall war strategy.


A secret Pentagon "Information Operations Roadmap," approved by Rumsfeld in October 2003, calls for "full spectrum" information operations and notes that "information intended for foreign audiences, including public diplomacy and PSYOP, increasingly is consumed by our domestic audience and vice versa."


"PSYOPS messages will often be replayed by the news media for much larger audiences, including the American public," the document states. The Pentagon argues, however, that "the distinction between foreign and domestic audiences becomes more a question of USG [u.S. government] intent rather than information dissemination practices."


It calls for "boundaries" between information operations abroad and the news media at home, but does not outline any corresponding limits on PSYOP campaigns.


Similar to the distinction the Pentagon draws between "collecting" and "receiving" intelligence on U.S. citizens, the Information Operations Roadmap argues that as long as the American public is not intentionally "targeted," any PSYOP propaganda consumed by the American public is acceptable.


The Pentagon plan also includes a strategy for taking over the internet and controlling the flow of information, viewing the web as a potential military adversary. The "roadmap" speaks of "fighting the net," and implies that the internet is the equivalent of "an enemy weapons system."


In a speech on Feb. 17 to the Council on Foreign Relations, Rumsfeld elaborated on the administration's perception that the battle over information would be a crucial front in the War on Terror, or as Rumsfeld calls it, the Long War.


"Let there be no doubt, the longer it takes to put a strategic communication framework into place, the more we can be certain that the vacuum will be filled by the enemy and by news informers that most assuredly will not paint an accurate picture of what is actually taking place," Rumsfeld said.


The Department of Homeland Security also has demonstrated a tendency to deploy military operatives to deal with domestic crises.


In the wake of Hurricane Katrina, the department dispatched "heavily armed paramilitary mercenaries from the Blackwater private security firm, infamous for its work in Iraq, (and had them) openly patrolling the streets of New Orleans," reported journalists Jeremy Scahill and Daniela Crespo on Sept. 10, 2005.


Noting the reputation of the Blackwater mercenaries as "some of the most feared professional killers in the world," Scahill and Crespo said Blackwater's presence in New Orleans "raises alarming questions about why the government would allow men trained to kill with impunity in places like Iraq and Afghanistan to operate here."


U.S. battlefield


In the view of some civil libertarians, a form of martial law already exists in the United States and has been in place since shortly after the 9/11 attacks when Bush issued Military Order No. 1 which empowered him to detain any noncitizen as an international terrorist or enemy combatant.


"The president decided that he was no longer running the country as a civilian president," wrote civil rights attorney Michael Ratner in the book "Guantanamo: What the World Should Know." "He issued a military order giving himself the power to run the country as a general."


For any American citizen suspected of collaborating with terrorists, Bush also revealed what's in store. In May 2002, the FBI arrested U.S. citizen Jose Padilla in Chicago on suspicion that he might be an al-Qaida operative planning an attack.


Rather than bring criminal charges, Bush designated Padilla an "enemy combatant" and had him imprisoned indefinitely without benefit of due process. After three years, the administration finally brought charges against Padilla, in order to avoid a Supreme Court showdown the White House might have lost.


But since the court was not able to rule on the Padilla case, the administration's arguments have not been formally repudiated. Indeed, despite filing charges against Padilla, the White House still asserts the right to detain U.S. citizens without charges as enemy combatants.


This claimed authority is based on the assertion that the United States is at war and the American homeland is part of the battlefield.


"In the war against terrorists of global reach, as the nation learned all too well on Sept. 11, 2001, the territory of the United States is part of the battlefield," Bush's lawyers argued in briefs to the federal courts.


Given Bush's now open assertions that he is using his "plenary" -- or unlimited -- powers as commander in chief for the duration of the indefinite War on Terror, Americans can no longer trust that their constitutional rights protect them from government actions.


As former Vice President Al Gore asked after recounting a litany of sweeping powers that Bush has asserted to fight the War on Terror, "Can it be true that any president really has such powers under our Constitution? If the answer is 'yes,' then under the theory by which these acts are committed, are there any acts that can on their face be prohibited?"


In such extraordinary circumstances, the American people might legitimately ask exactly what the Bush administration means by the "rapid development of new programs," which might require the construction of a new network of detention camps

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:huh2: Color me paranoid but I feel that there is a direct correlation between these impending buildings for undocumented immigrants and Avian Flu. In the article below there is no mention of Avian Flu- I am making simply thinking 12 steps ahead- like a good chess player always does.


I can only hope I am wrong:


Hotel U.S.A.

By Joseph Richey, AlterNet. Posted March 14, 2006.

The government's plans for an 'immigration emergency' include relocation and detention centers -- courtesy of Kellogg, Brown and Root.


This is part two of a two-part series on new immigration and detention centers in the United States. Read part one of the series, "Bush's Mysterious 'New Programs'," by Nat Perry.


Some time between now and 2010, the U.S. government expects some uninvited guests -- a massive influx of undocumented immigrants. In preparation for their arrival, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) backed the National Intelligence Reform and Terrorism Prevention Act of 2004, which mandates 40,000 new beds and barracks for foreign-born refugees at four undisclosed locations over the next five years.


On Jan. 3, 2006, the Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) expanded an existing contract held by Halliburton subsidiary Kellogg, Brown and Root (KBR) and renewed it to accommodate up to 20,000 refugees from environmental and political disasters. A future expansion in 2008 calls for another 20,000 beds.


Detention of immigrants and other undesirables without charge is nothing new. After the Civil War, many states supplied troops and police to assist private armed guards to arrest and detain striking workers. In 1918, Attorney General Mitchell Palmer and a youthful 24-year-old J. Edgar Hoover launched raids to round up and deport alleged subversives. In the fall of 1934, striking textile workers were interned in camps at Fort MacPherson outside Atlanta, Ga. Congress approved the Internal Security Act of 1950, including FBI Director Hoover's "Security Portfolio," a plan to arrest and detain up to 20,000 dissidents. 1984 Director of Federal Emergency Management Administration (FEMA) under Ronald Reagan reconstituted a readiness exercise, Operation Night Train, code-named REX 84, a potential roundup of up tens of thousands of Central Americans residing in the United States for internment in ten military detention centers.

But the difference here is that the emergency detention and removal plans for 2006-2010 are built on a new contingency support contract. Originally awarded in 1999 by the now-defunct Immigration and Naturalization Service, the contract sought logistical support for imagined immigration events. Contingency support contracts are good business for KBR, which provides insurance for calamities that don't happen.


When George Bush and Dick Cheney moved to Washington, many Texas-based companies teed up for contract extensions and new business opportunities. Among them, KBR was viewed by many in the defense contracting industry as a capable, fast and far-reaching company. KBR has been awarded the last three expanded improved detention center contracts administered by the Army Corps. The awards often come well in advance of the expiration date.

Take the latest detention center contract between DHS/ICE and KBR: The solicitation went to 26 vendors of detention and logistical support services, 11 of them based in Texas. As with most large service contracts entailing indefinite delivery, indefinite quantity and rapid response time, Halliburton's KBR submitted the only bid for the work. While this does not constitute another "cost-plus no-bid contract," which have been cited as particularly vulnerable to abuse and fraud, the contract award to a single bidder doesn't lend itself to much competitive pricing. Contracting officer Linda Eadie of the U.S. Army Corps' Fort Worth, Texas, district, who administrated the DHS/ICE deal with KBR disagreed: "This is a cost-plus contract, but it is not a no-bid. The procurement was competitively negotiated."


During the contract negotiations, Hurricane Katrina hit the Gulf Coast. USACE learned the hard way about the limitations of the 2001-2005 contract. The existing contract responded to an "immigration emergency," not a "migration emergency." Hurricane Katrina involved "evacuees" from within the United States, and not "refugees" or immigrants from abroad. Under the contract, no task orders could be issued, with the exception of a requirement to perform readiness exercises on a moment's notice. Under that provision, DHS ordered KBR to provide temporary shelter for DHS and ICE officials in New Orleans for $7 million.


In the "recompete" solicitation for the detention and relocation centers, USACE modified the terms. Under the new contract, the detention and relocation centers will be able to hold both immigrant refugees from U.S.-born natural disasters and foreign-born natural disasters. This new program expands the DHS Contingency Support Project and ICE's Detention and Removal Program. In the event of another Katrina-like flood, ICE, with KBR's logistical support, will perform a large-scale migrant catch and release program.

DHS and ICE determine what constitutes an immigration emergency. But no one from ICE or DHS has responded to queries about specific scenarios that would order KBR to act on the contract. A KBR press release from Jan. 24 quotes Bruce Stanski, executive vice president, KBR Government and Infrastructure, who "looks forward to supporting the development of new programs."


Could an immigration emergency be declared tomorrow in Arizona, Texas or California at the urging of conservative political leaders from those regions? Is this program the foundation of internment camps on U.S. soil again? Evacuee resettlement facilities can be converted into detention centers at-the-quick. An Army Corps procurement analyst told me, "Mobile watchtowers are easily wheeled onto the corners of barbed-wired tent camps."


The stated intentions of the contract and acquisition plan do not include those features. Linda Eadie explained that KBR's work could prevent a humanitarian catastrophe in the event of natural disasters such as floods, plagues, tidal waves, hurricanes, earthquakes or a political crisis abroad, like "the fall of a current or future government." USACE maintains it's money well spent on a de facto insurance plan against a humanitarian disaster, offering public shelter for evacuees from a variety of storms, natural disasters, human-induced events.

Immigration lawyers and migrant advocates warn that the government plans to detain and remove more people, including asylum seekers. Attorney Ahilan Arulanantham with the ACLU of Southern California told AlterNet, "Obviously, if the government's intentions are to care for refugees displaced by a natural disaster, we have no problem with that. But with the numbers of detentions, which have exploded since 1996 and more so after Sept. 11 -- and remember after 9/11, the government detained over 1,000 people in New York City, none of whom were linked to terrorist activity -- based on stories like these, we fear that their program could victimize people fleeing persecution or calamity, the very people that the program is designed to help."

The most recent award to KBR announced on Jan. 3, 2006, extends and expands the existing contract, as part of the DHS Contingency Support Project and ICE's Detention and Removal Program. Kellogg, Brown and Root will get $481,212 per year to maintain readiness.

"Rapid response capability is expensive," writes Debra Pulling, one of the U.S. Fort Worth district Army Corps contracting officers, in a memorandum. If called into duty, KBR would have access to a maximum amount of $385 million per deployment. Given the increased frequency and intensity of Gulf Coast hurricanes alone, five deployments would cost more than $1.9 billion over five years.

Each of the four detention centers would accommodate a single male population consisting of 40 percent of the total detainees, 10 percent single female, 40 percent families with children, and 10 percent criminal and sick. Each location will have three different checkpoints: a temporary staging facility where up to 5,000 can be housed and fed for up to 72 hours, and 1,800 can be processed a day; a transfer point holding up to 600 migrants for up to three months before relocation; and to accommodate longer stays for criminal and sick detainees, a temporary detention center where potential terrorist threats can be processed for "rendition" to a site outside the continental United States. Notable among the specifications for KBR is the Department of Defense security requirement for "secret" classification of assigned personnel.


Relating to potential task orders, a Corps memorandum states: "Although this contract will be executed inside the United States, it is likely to be used only during periods of significant political unrest affecting countries near to the United States. Such unrest, quite apart from its impact in creating a large number of refugees, may constitute a serious threat to the United States, which could result in the deployment of military forces. This contract requires an immediate stand up of facilities that will receive a large influx of refugees. It is anticipated that the refugees will not speak the language, and the circumstances may involve a hostile environment within the camp. Consequently, a potential for violence will exist in the camps. While there may or may not be a deployment of U.S. troops, there certainly will be a deployment of border patrol and other law enforcement agents, in a quasi-military manner."


The flexibility redrawn into the contract for these relocation and detention centers has alarmed human rights supporters both inside and outside the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. [AU: WHY?] One anonymous source within USACE warned, "Don't wait until they're putting people behind barbed wire. Don't wait until the cattle cars pull up. Nip this in the bud."


A representative from the New Jersey Civil Rights Defense Committee remarked, "To offer help at gunpoint, where people are not free to accept or reject it, is not really help."

An ICE spokesman told the New York Times on Feb. 4, 2006 that if a migration emergency does not happen, the detention centers may never need to be built. In fact, KBR is not planning to build anything. Existing structures, be they a local stadium, warehouse or airplane hangar, will be leased for a given period of time.


The prospective demand and requirements for this expanded emergency response activity is in the hands of government agencies. They'll be the ones to decide what constitutes an emergency, be it Category 4 hurricanes in the Gulf Coast, coup d'etats in Haiti, African killer bee-induced evacuations of Northern Mexico or, less dramatically, the mass influx of immigrants that crosses the U.S. border after the Christmas holidays. Whatever the emergency is, and whatever poor folks will be rounded up, one thing is certain: They will not be free to leave, and their hosts for the next five years will be Kellogg, Brown and Root.

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man, this thread has a lot of reading for someone this drunk this early in the morning...

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someone posted a link to infowars in the ports thread.


while a rediculously paranoid site, there are a lot of photos from what seems to be military exercizes based around containment of american citizens. I looked through most of them a couple days ago. according to the site it said some of the exercizes were held in oakland.... anyone heard bout this? I dismissed the photos at first, but reading this shit makes me think differently. If they are planning on large scale detention centers, then it seems perfectly viable that they are running excersizes to desentize troops to seeing fellow americans in situations such as that.

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Originally posted by shape1369@Mar 15 2006, 02:27 PM

someone posted a link to infowars in the ports thread.


while a rediculously paranoid site, there are a lot of photos from what seems to be military exercizes based around containment of american citizens. I looked through most of them a couple days ago. according to the site it said some of the exercizes were held in oakland.... anyone heard bout this? I dismissed the photos at first, but reading this shit makes me think differently. If they are planning on large scale detention centers, then it seems perfectly viable that they are running excersizes to desentize troops to seeing fellow americans in situations such as that.






These Exclusive Photos Were Shot by Alex Jones in Oakland, California During Operation: Urban Warrior. You Will See US Marines Training with Foreign Troops in Mock Martial Law Practices Including Disarming American Citizens Portrayed by Actors and Placing Them in Concentration Camps.

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Okay- yes, I am a conspiracy theorist- however- I am not sure if this site should have me worry- or wonder. http://www.infowars.com/index.html


I still feel though that there is a direct correlation between the “detention- holding camps� for “nonimmigrants� and the avian flu. I do not say this because I have issues with immigrants- It’s actually quite the contrary.


I just do not have any faith in our current administration at all. I feel our current administration has done nothing but betray not only Americans but foreigners- to be specific, and a bit more straightforward Muslims whether they are American or not. We have done absolutely nothing to improve or repair our foreign relationships with the rest of the world.


Our foreign relations department has been reduced to- or shall I say has fallen on the backs of our solders – while in the field fighting for their own lives- in a war that should have never started in the first place.


With the climate of fear that is being shoved down our throats by the minute- the fact that these detention camps are being built- for whatever reason by our favorite company Halliburton – should really be of no surprise. The question really- how much more are we willing to take?

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Rules For An Unruly New War

The high court takes up Bush's military tribunals

By Liz Halloran






It was November 2001, barely two months after the 9/11 terrorist attacks, when Osama bin Laden's personal driver was captured in Afghanistan and later shipped to the U.S. military prison in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. Half a world away, President Bush was ordering up a new military tribunal system to try foreigners designated as enemy combatants and accused of war crimes in the ongoing "war on terror."


Next week those events will collide at the U.S. Supreme Court. In what is destined to be a landmark case, justices are scheduled to hear an appeal by that driver, Yemen native Salim Ahmed Hamdan, challenging the legality of Bush's tribunals--the first since World War II. The high court will finally have to weigh in on some of the most contentious and polarizing issues in the post-9/11 world: How should the United States treat non-American prisoners whose allegiances lie not with a country but an ideology? Does the president have the power to unilaterally decide not only which prisoners qualify as enemy combatants but what rights they have and under what justice system they should be tried? And, at the heart of it all, should past rules of war apply, or does the war on terrorism--so different from previous wars--require its own special standards?


Recruits. Hamdan, now in his mid-30s, was a poor, part-time taxi driver in Yemen just 10 years ago when he was recruited to fight with Islamic insurgents in Tajikistan, according to journalist Jonathan Mahler, who is working on a book about Hamdan. But when those recruits were rebuffed at the Tajik border, they decided to look for bin Laden, who had recently moved his militant organization to Afghanistan.


Hamdan's lawyers acknowledge that their client went to work for bin Laden, but they argue that he was just a functionary, serving as the al Qaeda leader's driver--not involved in plotting or training for attacks on America. But the U.S. government alleges that Hamdan was much more. After his capture, he was designated an "enemy combatant," charged with conspiracy to commit terrorism and murder, and tapped as one of the first Guantanamo detainees to be tried under the new military tribunal system.


His challenge to that system will test the administration's ongoing effort to broadly expand presidential wartime authority--from conducting warrantless domestic surveillance to establishing the military tribunals, which allow unsworn statements in lieu of testimony and can impose the death penalty. And unlike a traditional court-martial, the tribunal system does not allow a review outside the military. The last line of appeal under the tribunals, except in limited circumstances, is Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld. The eight justices who will hear the Hamdan case (Chief Justice John G. Roberts has recused himself because he participated in an appeals court ruling on the case) will also examine whether legal protections afforded prisoners of war under the international Geneva Conventions should extend to detainees like Hamdan, who do not operate under the flag of a country.


Dismissed? But there is a wild card: Government lawyers want the high court to simply dismiss Hamdan's appeal. They argue that a law enacted by Congress last December blocking detainee access to U.S. courts also applies to cases pending at the time. The high court is expected to consider this issue first, and if justices agree with the government, Hamdan's appeal will be moot--as will cases filed by hundreds of Guantanamo's 500 detainees--and his case will revert to the military tribunalThe administration argues that the president has inherent constitutional power during wartime to establish the tribunals and also draws authority from legislation authorizing the use of military force that Congress passed in the wake of the 2001 attacks. There is historical precedent for the controversial tribunals, and lawyers like Richard Samp of the conservative Washington Legal Foundation argue that if detainees had access to open civilian courts, it would flood the courts and officials could be forced to reveal sensitive U.S. intelligence information.


Whatever the outcome, the justices will be drawn into a profound and emotional debate over the treatment and rights of the Guantanamo detainees--a debate that civil libertarians say has damaged America's reputation. "Military [tribunals] have been used throughout our history--there seems to me plenty of legal authority for that," says Richard D.Rosen, who spent 26 years as an Army judge advocate and now directs Texas Tech University's Center for Military Law and Policy. "But I think the courts should be allowed to get to the merits of this case. The military [tribunal] is not a court, and it's not equipped to decide these constitutional issues." The place for that, argues Rosen, is the Supreme Court. And in taking the case, the justices seem to agree that at the very least they need to establish some rules in a war that often seems not to have any.

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