RSN Fundraising Banner
FB Share
Email This Page
add comment

Ash writes: "Quietly, with little or no mention by the American corporate press, the U.S. cache of political prosecutions and prisoners is significantly on the rise."

(photo: Saul Young/News Sentinel)  (photo: Saul Young/News Sentinel)
(photo: Saul Young/News Sentinel) (photo: Saul Young/News Sentinel)

Are the Oak Ridge Defendants Obama's Pussy Riot?

By Marc Ash, Reader Supported News

10 February 14


n February 18, 2014, Federal Judge Amul Thapar will sentence an 83-year-old Roman Catholic nun and 2 others to what could be terms long enough to ensure that all three will die in prison.

What did Sister Megan Rice, 82, and Michael R. Walli, 63, of Washington and Gregory I. Boertje-Obed, 57, of Duluth, Minnesota, do? They cut through three fences with a pair of bolt cutters, hung banners, painted biblical slogans, and threw blood on a wall. Oh yes, and they embarrassed the United States government.

Quietly, with little or no mention by the American corporate press, the U.S. cache of political prosecutions and prisoners is significantly on the rise. Lynne Stuart, Tim DeChristopher, John Walker Lindh, John C. Kiriakou, Bradley (Chelsea) Manning and more recently the so-called "NATO 3" are but a few examples of novel government prosecutions resulting in unprecedented prison sentences. In each case, as in Oak Ridge, the defendants held strong political beliefs in opposition to the U.S. government.

The government says that that Rice, Walli and Boertje-Obed committed acts that amounted to sabotage, and they had little difficulty convincing a Tennessee jury. The problem is that there was no evidence of sabotage presented by the government. There was evidence of trespassing and vandalism, but the sabotage charge was pure hyperbole.

If being found guilty of sabotage were not worrisome enough, Judge Amul Thapar’s remarks regarding a recent sentencing hearing suggest that he will show no leniency: "The critical point is contrition, and I don't think any of the defendants are contrite about what they did. The defendants will not be given acceptance of responsibility."

Upon closer examination, however, Judge Thapar’s remarks are not surprising for a man with his political background. Thapar’s path to the federal bench was through staunchly Republican, right-wing political channels. Appointed to the bench by George W. Bush in 2007, Thapar, then United States Attorney for the Eastern District of Kentucky, was a favorite of Kentucky senator Mitch McConnell. In fact, McConnell played a key role in recruiting Thapar from his post in Ohio and was a very vocal advocate of his appointment to the federal bench, singing his praises loudly on the Senate floor during the nomination proceeding. But perhaps the most telling indicator of Thapar’s ideological perspective was his association with Attorney General Alberto Gonzales. Thapar served on an advisory committee to Gonzales and came under scrutiny in the "firing of U.S. attorneys because they [allegedly] weren’t active enough in prosecution Democrats."

But Thapar and the Republicans are not alone in their zeal to make examples of American dissenters. The Obama administration appears more intent on "Silencing the Whistle-Blowers" than any White House in history. The prosecutions are often novel or even unprecedented, the type that American judges and juries have historically eyed with substantial suspicion. However, in the current climate of mass media-driven fear, American juries ask no questions. Defendants can be tried and convicted of seemingly whatever prosecutors have the imagination to conjure up.

When the U.S. corporate press reports that Russian President Vladimir Putin has orchestrated convictions and prison sentences of his political opponents, there is always an air of condemnation in the reporting. But there is more to report. It should be said that the ranks of U.S. political prisoners are growing every day and that justice is just as much a political tool in the U.S. as it is in Russia. Are Rice, Walli and Boertje-Obed’s actions that much more serious than Nadezhda Tolokonnikova, Maria Alyokhina and Yekaterina Samutsevich, the Pussy Riot members convicted and jailed for "hooliganism motivated by religious hatred for a protest in Moscow's biggest Orthodox cathedral." In reality, the construct and prosecution of the two cases is strikingly similar.

In the meantime we shall see if the Vatican makes an appearance on Sister Megan’s behalf or just quietly lets her go to a place the church’s pedophiles never seem to go – prison.


For reference, the following is an article written by Fran Quigly on the Oak Ridge trial. It was first published on on May 15, 2013. Fran Quigly does an excellent job of presenting the case and charges. Full disclosure: Fran Quigly is the brother of Attorney Bill Quigly, who is representing Michael R. Walli in the Oak Ridge case.

Fran Quigley | How the US Turned Three Pacifists Into Violent Terrorists

In just ten months, the United States managed to transform an 82-year-old Catholic nun and two pacifists from nonviolent anti-nuclear peace protestors accused of misdemeanor trespassing into federal felons convicted of violent crimes of terrorism. Now in jail awaiting sentencing for their acts at an Oak Ridge, Tennessee, nuclear weapons production facility, their story should chill every person concerned about dissent in the US.

Here is how it happened.

In the early morning hours of Saturday, June 28, 2012, long-time peace activists Sr. Megan Rice, 82, Greg Boertje-Obed, 57, and Michael Walli, 63, cut through the chain link fence surrounding the Oak Ridge Y-12 nuclear weapons production facility and trespassed onto the property. Y-12, called the Fort Knox of the nuclear weapons industry, stores hundreds of metric tons of highly enriched uranium and works on every single one of the thousands of nuclear weapons maintained by the U.S.

Describing themselves as the Transform Now Plowshares, the three came as nonviolent protestors to symbolically disarm the weapons. They carried bibles, written statements, peace banners, spray paint, flower, candles, small baby bottles of blood, bread, hammers with biblical verses on them, and wire cutters. Their intent was to follow the words of Isaiah 2:4: “They shall beat their swords into plowshares and their spears into pruning hooks; nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more.”

Sr. Megan Rice has been a Catholic sister of the Society of the Holy Child Jesus for over sixty years. Greg Boertje-Obed, a married carpenter who has a college-age daughter, is an Army veteran and lives at a Catholic Worker house in Duluth, Minnesota. Michael Walli, a two-term Vietnam veteran turned peacemaker, lives at the Dorothy Day Catholic Worker house in Washington DC.

In the dark, the three activists cut through a boundary fence which had signs stating “No Trespassing.” The signs indicate that unauthorized entry, a misdemeanor, is punishable by up to 1 year in prison and a $100,000 fine.

No security arrived to confront them.

So the three climbed up a hill through heavy brush, crossed a road, and kept going until they saw the Highly Enriched Uranium Materials Facility (HEUMF) surrounded by three fences, lit up by blazing lights.

Still no security.

So they cut through the three fences, hung up their peace banners, and spray-painted peace slogans on the HEUMF. Still no security arrived. They began praying, and sang songs like “Down by the Riverside” and “Peace Is Flowing Like a River.”

When security finally arrived at about 4:30 a.m., the three surrendered peacefully, and were arrested and jailed.

The next Monday, July 30, Rice, Boertje-Obed, and Walli were arraigned and charged with federal trespassing, a misdemeanor charge which carries a penalty of up to one year in jail. Frank Munger, an award-winning journalist with the Knoxville News Sentinel, was the first to publicly state, “If unarmed protesters dressed in dark clothing could reach the plant’s core during the cover of dark, it raised questions about the plant’s security against more menacing intruders.”

On Wednesday, August 1, all nuclear operations at Y-12 were ordered to be put on hold in order for the plant to focus on security. B&W Y-12 (a joint venture of the Babcock and Wilcox Company and Bechtel National Inc.), the security contractor in charge of Y-12, ordered the “security stand-down,” which was fully supported by the National Nuclear Security Administration.

On Thursday, August 2, Rice, Boertje-Obed, and Walli appeared in court for a pretrial bail hearing. The government asked that all three be detained. One prosecutor called them a potential “danger to the community” and asked that all three be kept in jail until their trial. The U.S. magistrate allowed them to be released.

Sr. Megan Rice walked out of the jail and promptly admitted to gathered media that the three had indeed gone onto the property and taken action in protest of nuclear weapons. “But we had to – we were doing it because we had to reveal the truth of the criminality which is there, that’s our obligation,” Rice said. She also challenged the entire nuclear weapons industry: “We have the power, and the love, and the strength and the courage to end it and transform the whole project, for which has been expended more than 7.2 trillion dollars,” she said. “The truth will heal us and heal our planet, heal our diseases, which result from the disharmony of our planet caused by the worst weapons in the history of mankind, which should not exist. For this we give our lives – for the truth about the terrible existence of these weapons.”

Then the government began increasing the charges against the anti-nuclear peace protestors.

The day after the magistrate ordered the release of Rice, Boertje-Obed, and Walli, a Department of Energy (DOE) agent swore out a federal criminal complaint against the three for damage to federal property, a felony punishable by zero to five years in prison, under 18 U.S. Code Section 1363.

The DOE agent admitted the three carried a letter that stated, “We come to the Y-12 facility because our very humanity rejects the designs of nuclearism, empire and war. Our faith in love and nonviolence encourages us to believe that our activity here is necessary; that we come to invite transformation, undo the past and present work of Y-12; disarm and end any further efforts to increase the Y-12 capacity for an economy and social structure based on war-making and empire-building.”

Now, Rice, Boertje-Obed, and Walli were facing one misdemeanor and one felony and up to six years in prison.

But the government did not stop there. The next week, the charges were enlarged yet again.

On Tuesday, August 7, the U.S. expanded the charges against the peace activists to three counts. The first was the original charge of damage to Y-12 in violation of 18 US Code 1363, punishable by up to five years in prison. The second was an additional damage to federal property in excess of $1000 in violation of 18 US Code 1361, punishable by up to ten years in prison. The third was a trespassing charge, a misdemeanor punishable by up to one year in prison under 42 US Code 2278.

Now they faced up to sixteen years in prison. And the actions of the protestors started to receive national and international attention.

On August 10, 2012, The New York Times ran a picture of Sr. Megan Rice on page one under the headline “The Nun Who Broke into the Nuclear Sanctum.” Citing nuclear experts, the paper of record called their actions “the biggest security breach in the history of the nation’s atomic complex.”

At the end of August 2012, the inspector general of the Department of Energy issued a comprehensive report on the security breakdown at Y-12. Calling the peace activists trespassers, the report indicated that the three were able to get as far as they did because of “multiple system failures on several levels.” The cited failures included cameras broken for six months, ineptitude in responding to alarms, communication problems, and many other failures of the contractors and the federal monitors. The report concluded that “Ironically, the Y-12 breach may have been an important 'wake-up' call regarding the need to correct security issues at the site.”

On October 4, 2012, the defendants announced that they had been advised that, unless they pleaded guilty to at least one felony and the misdemeanor trespass charge, the U.S. would also charge them with sabotage against the U.S. government, a much more serious charge. Over 3000 people signed a petition to U.S. Attorney General Holder asking him not to charge them with sabotage.

But on December 4, 2012, the U.S. filed a new indictment of the protestors. Count one was the promised new charge of sabotage. Defendants were charged with intending to injure, interfere with, or obstruct the national defense of the United States and willful damage of national security premises in violation of 18 US Code 2155, punishable by up to 20 years in prison. Counts two and three were the previous felony property damage charges, with potential prison terms of up to fifteen more years in prison.

Gone entirely was the original misdemeanor charge of trespass. Now Rice, Boertje-Obed, and Walli faced up to thirty-five years in prison.

In a mere five months, government charges transformed them from misdemeanor trespassers to multiple felony saboteurs.

The government also successfully moved to strip the three from presenting any defenses or testimony about the harmful effects of nuclear weapons. The U.S. Attorney’s office filed a document they called “Motion to Preclude Defendants From Introducing Evidence in Support of Certain Justification Defenses.” In this motion, the U.S. asked the court to bar the peace protestors from being allowed to put on any evidence regarding the illegality of nuclear weapons, the immorality of nuclear weapons, international law, or religious, moral, or political beliefs regarding nuclear weapons, the Nuremberg principles developed after WWII, First Amendment protections, necessity, or U.S. policy regarding nuclear weapons.

Rice, Boertje-Obed, and Walli argued against the motion. But, despite powerful testimony by former U.S. Attorney General Ramsey Clark, as well as declarations from an internationally renowned physician and others, the court ruled against the defendants.

Meanwhile, Congress was looking into the security breach, and media attention to the trial grew with a remarkable story in the Washington Post, with CNN coverage, and with AP and Reuters joining in.

The trial was held in Knoxville in early May 2013. The three peace activists were convicted on all counts. Rice, Boertje-Obed, and Walli all took the stand, admitted what they had done, and explained why they did it. The federal manager of Y-12 said the protestors had damaged the credibility of the site in the U.S. and globally and even claimed that their acts had an impact on nuclear deterrence.

As soon as the jury was dismissed, the government moved to jail the protestors because they had been convicted of “crimes of violence.” The government argued that cutting the fences and spray-painting slogans was property damage such as to constitute crimes of violence so the law obligated their incarceration pending sentencing.

The defense pointed out that Rice, Boertje-Obed, and Walli had remained free since their arrest without incident. The government attorneys argued that two of the protestors had violated their bail by going to a Congressional hearing about the Y-12 security problems, an act that had been approved by their parole officers.

The three were immediately jailed. In its decision affirming their incarceration pending their sentencing, the court ruled that both the sabotage and the damage to property convictions were defined by Congress as federal crimes of terrorism. Since the charges carry potential sentences of ten years or more, the court ruled there was a strong presumption in favor of incarceration which was not outweighed by any unique circumstances that warranted their release pending sentencing.

These nonviolent peace activists now sit in jail as federal prisoners, awaiting their sentencing on September 23, 2013.

In ten months, an 82-year-old nun and two pacifists had been successfully transformed by the U.S. government from nonviolent anti-nuclear peace protestors accused of misdemeanor trespassing into felons convicted of violent crimes of terrorism.

Fran Quigley is an Indianapolis attorney working on local and international poverty issues. His column appears in The Indianapolis Star every other Monday.

Marc Ash is the founder and former Executive Director of Truthout, and is now founder and Editor of Reader Supported News.

Reader Supported News is the Publication of Origin for this work. Permission to republish is freely granted with credit and a link back to Reader Supported News. your social media marketing partner


A note of caution regarding our comment sections:

For months a stream of media reports have warned of coordinated propaganda efforts targeting political websites based in the U.S., particularly in the run-up to the 2016 presidential election.

We too were alarmed at the patterns we were, and still are, seeing. It is clear that the provocateurs are far more savvy, disciplined, and purposeful than anything we have ever experienced before.

It is also clear that we still have elements of the same activity in our article discussion forums at this time.

We have hosted and encouraged reader expression since the turn of the century. The comments of our readers are the most vibrant, best-used interactive feature at Reader Supported News. Accordingly, we are strongly resistant to interrupting those services.

It is, however, important to note that in all likelihood hardened operatives are attempting to shape the dialog our community seeks to engage in.

Adapt and overcome.

Marc Ash
Founder, Reader Supported News

+73 # Farafalla 2014-02-10 14:32
"But Thapar and the Republicans are not alone in their zeal to make examples of American dissenters. The Obama administration appears more intent on "Silencing the Whistle-Blowers " than any White House in history."

Protest getting the terrorist label now seems to be the norm from your local police dept. to the DOJ. The terror imposed on the planet by nuclear weapons does not get the same branding.

Funny how the ones with the loudest voices for military action against Iran for a non-existent nuclear weapons program are the biggest nuclear terrorists on Earth.
+52 # barkingcarpet 2014-02-10 15:34
These folks ARE hero's!
Meet the new boss..... Obama is just as worser than Bush, only worser, because change and hope were expected and implied.

I call him Wormtongue, because he speaks so eloquently and with rosey rosyness, but where has the Hope and Change shown itself in deeds or follow through? To be fair though, really, it IS all of us. We who care more about non-repairable badly made to break products, never looking to see the remains of living environments, or the ruined lives of slave labor behind too many, in our apathetic consumer me me me lives.

What I see and experience are corrupt governance, policy, and regulation of the Commons of Nature, you know, the "stuff" which is all life, and supports it all?
The only reasons to have a government, should be the preservation of the commons of Nature, for all life, and for a future worth living in.

I ask, what are we giving back to life, or to the future, and what are we leaving behind?

The Endless Wars, Fracking, Tarsands And Fukushimas ARE our doing folks, with every waking dollar, and we SHOULD be out there, as these three are, or as that Jesus dude would be, which so many profess to follow.

Shame on US.
+17 # RLF 2014-02-11 06:45
Holder doesn't have anything to do because Obama won't let him prosecute torturers or thieving he goes after nuns!
+56 # WestWinds 2014-02-10 14:40
Just goes to show you what a totalitarian country we have really become; Right-wing, fascist and intolerant of dissent but not criminal activity (banksters). We are looking more and more like North Korea all the time; nutz.
+16 # Johnny 2014-02-10 15:15
Actually, neither you nor I have any idea what North Korea looks like. The only information we get is hate propaganda from the elite-owned media.
-12 # rmk948 2014-02-10 16:07
Why don't you visit there and let us know?
+2 # ericlipps 2014-02-10 18:58
Quoting rmk948:
Why don't you visit there and let us know?

Actually, it might be revealing to do so. I'm sure Pyongyang would do its best, of course, to pout on a dog and pony show for visitors, but such things have a way of showing more than their sponsors intended.
+13 # RMDC 2014-02-11 06:47
Thanks for this. I too get pretty tired of people who just follow the mass media line that N. Korea or some other enemy of the US is where all the persecutions occur. This article is about persecutions that are occurring in the US.

Invoking N. Korea, the USSR, Cuba and all the rest is just lazy thinking. The American propaganda system has taught all of us to do that. We need to stop. N. Korea has its own set of problems and they clearly are not what the US mass media says they are.
+49 # Jay1980 2014-02-10 14:50
Someday it may be a Federal Crime to hold a protest sign at the side of the road (interfering with federally-funde d infrastructure) ? Having witnessed corporate/gover nment-fawning mass media from the inside, (CNN) I only see it getting worse (in expecting sympathy for rights-practici ng citizens). Fear of not being 'American enough' dampens falling on the side of protestors. It also weakens press freedom (and trust) ironically.
+8 # wantrealdemocracy 2014-02-11 22:01
It is a crime now to hold a protest sign in a public gathering if you don't pay a fee and get a permit. It is going to get worse, much worse when the dollar collapses and the banks won't let you take your money out. The Occupy protestors were not put down with fear of not being 'American enough', we were attacked the police and military forces. We were as dangerous as these peace activists and that will not be allowed! Bad times are ahead for us. Plant some veggies. Food prices are going to go WAY UP. stop voting for corporate lackeys. Don't give them the semblence of ligtimacy.
+29 # curmudgeon 2014-02-10 15:05
Sieg Heil, Mein Herrs,

Ve vill show these commie, pinko, preverts dot dey can't fool with Amerika.

Just look at der photos...obviou sly demented enemies of der staten.

0 # Kootenay Coyote 2014-02-19 09:51
'...der staten'

That would be Staat.
+57 # Billsy 2014-02-10 15:07
So, J.P. Morgan gets off with easily affordable (for them) multi-million dollar fines while activist citizens get lengthy jail sentences. Banana republic, here we come.
+11 # RLF 2014-02-11 06:47
And rich drunk driving murderers get off scott free.
+6 # goodsensecynic 2014-02-11 13:57
Quoting Billsy:
Banana republic, here we come.

As the self-appointed President and (so far) only member of the International Society for the prevention of verbal cruelty to Banana Republics, Lemmings, Luddites, Cynics and others who are regularly defamed by implication and connotation, I object to the use of the phrase "banana republic," which is an insult to many Latin American countries and to bananas.

The so-called "banana republics" were cruel dictatorships aided by American corporations and abetted by the CIA; yet, the term implies that the oppressed citizens of these states were somehow to blame for their own victimage.

Fortunately (and with NO help from the US government) many Latin American nations have fought for and won democracy and a measure of social justice.

Let's leave the banana peels where they belong ... in Washington and praise the brave people significantly south of Tejas for having the courage to escape from the worst of their troubles and make some advances toward the peace and prosperity they deserve.
+5 # oprichniki 2014-02-10 15:08
+19 # Johnny 2014-02-10 15:13
Give me a fucking break! Pussy Riot was mere juvenile vandalism while trespassing in a church. The Oak Ridge defendants are prisoners of conscience, jailed for their political statements.
-43 # fenox 2014-02-10 15:24
Marc Ash is becoming a bit heavy. A bit ridiculous.
Every nation has its activists. They take risks for which we are gratefully. Ours are against nuclear, but also against Monsanto's GMO. They break the laws and know it. We are grateful and admire them. But....
let's not fall into the trap that breaking the law, if for activists or terrorists is a good idea the president should take care of. The executive and justice are separated and thanks they are.
+51 # MJnevetS 2014-02-10 16:30
Quoting fenox:
But...let's not fall into the trap that breaking the law, if for activists or terrorists is a good idea the president should take care of.

Fenox, you seem to miss the point. The Oak Ridge Defendants were willing to serve time (1 year for criminal trespass) for their offenses. Nonetheless, to call them terrorists is an abuse of process. Sabotage!? What did they do to destroy the ability of the location to function? They merely showed that there was a complete lack of security and gave the private corporations running the facility a black eye. THAT is why they were punished! That is not justice, that is Fascism (Private corporations use of government power to control the populace)
+10 # fenox 2014-02-11 08:17
Trablinski, a famous foot star, got a severe prison sentence here, just because he wanted to bring into the public eye the quantity of US nuclear bombs, stocked in our nation. He was considered a terrorist and the CIA was daily present at his trial. A french farmer got several punished with prison time, because he destroyed GMO plantations that threatened his own crop. It's because of their trials we became aware of the problems they brought into the sunlight. They suffered, and we became more aware. They achieved their purpose, to put a
spot on elements we should have known and combat today. Thanks to them. Without their sacrifice, it wouldn't have been possible. One was convicted as terrorist, because of American nuclear sensibility , the other for destruction of private property .
Their trials were important to make democracy work.
Do we want an American nuclear base? Do we want
Monsanto's GMO's in our nation. And there our work starts.
+4 # RLF 2014-02-11 06:49
If you think justice and executive are separate...I've got some great bridge real estate for you!
+13 # RMDC 2014-02-11 06:54
Civil Disobedience is a long standing part of the democratic process. People in governments and with great authority often do pass laws and regulations that are not right, moral, or beneficial to people. They are good at blocking all means of reform.

So the time comes when citizens just have to disobey the law. Yes, they do risk exactly the retributions that the Oak Ridge Three are now facing. But that only means that the rest of us should raise total hell until they are released. They are heroes for standing up to bad laws and policies.

Civil Disobedience is always tough but it is the heart of democracy. All of us should disobey unjust and corrupt laws and regulations. That's the only way over-reaching politicians can be held accountable. The judges they appoint are not going to put a check on them. People have to do it.
-1 # tigerlillie 2014-02-12 01:20
I'm confused fenox...are you a citizen of this country?
-2 # tigerlillie 2014-02-12 01:24
Oops... spoke too soon, no, she is not a citizen of the U.S. I'm not objecting to your making comments, fenox, and maybe this is due to the fact that English is a 2nd language for you, but your comments, here and else where on this board, sometimes seem to imply that you are a member of this nation, when you clearly are not.
+40 # seeuingoa 2014-02-10 15:32
America has lost all credibility.
What a ridiculous immature country
inhabited with a totally complacent

And how can it be different when there
are so few investigate journalists
writing in alternative medias that the
average American never reads.

But, whatever, don´t give up, and
don´t forget to bring your whistle
tomorrow on february 11th, so we can
all be whistle-blowers .
+49 # PABLO DIABLO 2014-02-10 15:59
When is James Clapper going to prison for lying to Congress? Or George W. Bush and Dick Cheney for lying us into an illegal war? Any of the valerie Plame exposers? Etc., etc, etc. Wake up America.
-91 # rmk948 2014-02-10 16:05
Don't do the crime if you can't do the time. I have no sympathy for these egomaniacal clowns. Let them die in prison.
+13 # Skippydelic 2014-02-10 19:53
OK, imagine that you crossed the street in the middle of the block. Instead of 'jaywalking', though, you're charged with Domestic Terrorism, because it created 'fear' in the minds of drivers, and *deliberately* disregarded the safety of those drivers!

Does jaywalking make you a GENUINE 'terrorist'? NO!

But if the prosecutor makes a good enough case - wrongly and fraudulently - you COULD be convicted!

So don't do the crime if you can't do the time!
+11 # noitall 2014-02-11 11:48
Quoting rmk948:
Don't do the crime if you can't do the time. I have no sympathy for these egomaniacal clowns. Let them die in prison.

rmk948, you should have this tattooed on your arm. You have already transformed into the Lemming that today's government would classify as the "perfect citizen". You have drank the Kool Aid and have become the WORST type of citizen that MY America could have. Go back to bed.
+4 # phrixus 2014-02-11 13:49
Please don't feed the trolls.
+1 # John S. Browne 2014-02-12 19:46

We need, and have the duty, to stand up to the shill-trolls and to correct their lying propa- ganda so they're less likely to successfully deceive people in these threads. So, in order to fulfill that duty, we have little choice but to "feed" them as you and so many people put it. Do you want to allow innocent people who previously didn't know better, to be allowed to be deceived by these agent provocateur propagandists?

Personally, I believe that as soon as it becomes obvious that they are real shill-trolls, they should be kicked out of all websites where they promulgate their "vile bile"; and, through using IP addresses, be banned from commenting on those sites AT ALL. But, evidently, many if not most of these websites can't be bothered or have a false concept of free speech that they supposedly "have to" allow these miscreants to continuously pollute and degener- ate their sites with their evil propaganda.

Yet, free speech does NOT include being able and allowed to state their opinions as agent provocateurs for a corrupt and evil government with the express purpose of deceiving people into believing lies about what's going on.

0 # John S. Browne 2014-02-12 19:47

Granted, if it isn't completely obvious that they're truly and actually shill-trolls, they should not be kicked out and banned from commenting; but, if it's obvious, they most-certainly should be, without question and/or any doubt(s) whatsoever. They do NOT have freedom of speech to speak freely in such a capacity and to pollute the conversation with impunity and/or immunity.

+27 # giraffee2012 2014-02-10 16:28
The article mentions the presiding judge is a right wing..... The law and politics and/or the law and religion and/or the law and ideology are not to mix.

So how does THIS judge get to rule on HIS politics, religion, and ideology?

Somebody in the legal system MUST know how to avoid such prejudice.... ah, yes, not since Reagan and not since Citizens United allows politicians (who appoint judges) buy our government.

G-d damn the American Justice system from the RATS on down
+4 # RLF 2014-02-11 06:52
The amerikan justice system is broken and only makes lawyers rich. Just another part of this country that needs serious work and we get nothing from Washington but flumux.
+23 # wrknight 2014-02-10 17:17
1984 arrived a little late, but it finally arrived.
+22 # uuzul 2014-02-10 17:34
ORWELL was an optimist.
+19 # oakes721 2014-02-10 19:24
Those sleeping at "the button" are now busily locking the barn door after the warhorses have escaped. Insecurity contractors now scurry about, wildly trying to force blame where it does not belong.

Nuclear weaponry in the hands of those proven to be irresponsible is the only crime that multiplies itself here. The meltdown of security leaves only the gnashing of teeth and tyrannical threats in their protests against the protestors.

The facade is now gone. Buckle up.
+10 # m... 2014-02-10 22:49

I wonder what this case will do for Stock Valuations in--

I'm smelling a great opportunity for buying low and selling high here.
It looks like the effort has expanded to fill those profitable prison beds.
Private Prison Shareholders must be quite happy with this 'legal' effort.
Break out the Champagne..!
Its 2014 in America..!
And, making money any way you can, maintaining heightened states of national fear and the Privatization of all Government Functions into lucrative, For-Profit Contracts are what its all about now anyway-- right..?

Its the new American Gravy Train… ALL ABOARD..!!!
Might as well jump on and go for that long ride back up to Middle Class..!

I wonder if there's any room for a small 'Mom and Pop' Startup Prison in my neighborhood..?
Just a simple one for Nuns and Jaywalker Criminals maybe… It would sure help the local merchants too.

+3 # mjc 2014-02-11 08:57
The "article" says it all. We HAVE gone to the police state run by the militarists, supported by the hard core conservatives in Congress, with a leader, called president, who seems so reasonable, so willing to hear both sides, a BLACK man...glory be! well, but who basically is merely a tool of the fascist groups that ARE running this country and making decisions. Our so-called justice system can no longer...appare ntly...distingu ish from sabotage and protesting, whistle-blowing and treason. That constitutional lawyer and his clan in the White House has assured our Constitution has served its last purpose.
+7 # Heisenberg 2014-02-11 11:09
The common man, the 90% of us, the majority of us tax-payers, on whom the entire machinery feeds, don't stand a chance against the government. As a former U S Postal employee, I learned first-hand that the laws apply against us, and, not toward the gov't, and, the laws can (and, are) ignored, perverted, misinterpreted & violated, as befits the needs/desires of Uncle Sam.
+5 # LML 2014-02-11 15:19
if this is indeed “the biggest security breach in the history of the nation’s atomic complex,” perhaps the three should really be given a reward for revealing this very frightening security breach....
What if they had actually been terrorists with an evil plan!!
+3 # John S. Browne 2014-02-12 19:57

Yah, if they were "anarchist" hackers, they would be recruited by the government to work for the NSA.

[If those reading this already haven't, please watch the movie, Enemy of the State, with Will Smith and Gene Hackman (or recall it and/or watch it again); and look at the bigger picture and realize that what happened to Will Smith's character in the movie, CAN HAPPEN TO ANY OF US! The subtitle of the movie, at least on the DVD case liner that I have, is, "It's not paranoia if they're really after you." And, right now, they ARE monitoring and ARE after ALL OF US.]


THE NEW STREAMLINED RSN LOGIN PROCESS: Register once, then login and you are ready to comment. All you need is a Username and a Password of your choosing and you are free to comment whenever you like! Welcome to the Reader Supported News community.