FALCON: DoJ's public relations ruse
Quick tip: Other blogs mentioning SAIC
DoJ's story isn't adding up. Operation FALCON: Have you looked at the rest of the story?
Don't believe for a moment that DoD has better PR than DoJ. US Navy had control of Guantanamo, where the FBI was in close consultation with the NAVY IG.
DoJ conducted a public relations campaign called FALCON. According to DoJ, the FALCON program was a massive sweep on criminals. The information used was already within law enforcement hands.
Other than a few public photos, there is little to suggest this operation was real, or that the massive effort was effectual. Rather, the program appears related more to a PR-campaign to pump up support for law enforcement despite their waning publicly credibility.
At best, DoJ’s assertions about FALCON should be given little credibility. At worst, there is a massive effort underway to create the illusion of competence and results where there exists no actual capability.
Just as we have seen the benefits of public disclosure in re Social Security, so too would the public benefit by an open discussion about FALCON.
Congress needs to look into the matter. And the public needs to know why DoJ should be believed. DoJ, if it truly was engaged in FALCON, should be able to show what type of workload, effort, and resources were above and beyond what was on the baseline.
However, we see no evidence that FALCON did anything to detract from resources. This is not to say that FALCON was efficient; only to suggest the opposite: That at the time that FALCON was supposedly underway, there was no noticeable change in law enforcement manning, effort, or staffing to cover these higher requirements.
We have yet to examine the real results of falcon, and explore the types of actions taken. With time, we will learn more about the types of operations conduct, whether there were real resources, and whether the “massive” effort is to be believed.
However, in the short term, all statements from DOJ and law enforcement should be taken for what they are: Questionable. Recall they have already lied about war crimes before the world and fabricated video evidence about RNC protestors in NYC and WMD in Iraq. It would be nothing for the White House to direct Gonzalez to engage in another ruse.
This note outlines the areas of concerns and outlines some general areas that DoJ IG, interested media, and the public may wish to discuss. Remember, it was only through the public discussion of Social Security that the public now realizes the White House has no credible plan. So too should the public discuss FALCON when it considers whether there remains any credible reason to renew the Patriot Act.
This note argues that FALCON is a ruse and that the Patriot Act should not be renewed because the government, despite having this power, has squandered the public trust, not effectively used the resources to combat terrorism, has engaged in unconstitutional conduct, and has no actual evidence that the Patriot Act is needed. The 10,000 AlQueda supposedly running around are outside DoJ’s ability to find. Thus, there is no reason to believe that under the FALCON program, DoJ was able to achieve superior results.
Rather, the public should ask, “Why is all this criminal information available, but not being used; and at the same time does DOJ and local law enforcement engage in ruses to gather, store non-criminal information about non-criminal public citizens?” The answer lies in the post 9-11 world of paranoia.
The same paranoia which led this nation to a largely unchallenged war in Iraq. The time to challenge the White House about FALCON and the Patriot Act is at hand.
DoJ’s assertions about FALCON are weak and have very low credibility.
DoJ’s program reportedly had something to do with tracking down individuals.
In practice, the program appears to be more of a public relations stunt, and an effort to appease Congress.
DoJ has a problem. The number of AlQueda running around has proven to be illusory. So now that AlQueda numbers have proven illusory is DoJ effectively managing its funding? It does not appear to be so.
If FALCON were a real program, DoJ personnel would not be more easily accessible. Rather, DoJ and local law enforcement have no apparent change in conduct, calls, or activity in the period immediately prior to, during, or after FALCON.
If FALCON were a real program, then the number of complaints, calls, complaints, and the workload within DoJ and local law enforcement would have increased. Yet, during FALCON we see no reports of an increase in the number of complaints. This is not because DoJ and local law enforcement are turning over a new leaf. Rather, the actual workload is illusory.
Yet, it remains unclear why during this period DoJ personnel continued to engage in the same workloads: No apparent change in response times; no change in access; and no change in types of excuses given to rebuff information or refuse information.
There is no basis to believe the numbers. They have no t been independently audited. DoJ’s primary interest is in avoiding needed Congressional oversight at a time when DoJ personnel continue to engaging in practices both contrary to public law, policy, and internal guidelines.
Rather than actually putting additional manpower into local law enforcement and responding to real issues, DoJ and local law enforcement continue to send a mixed signal to the public. On one hand suggesting that complaints and issues are either not crimes or have been reviewed and closed out; while at the same time spending an unusual and curious amount of time attempting to identify the source of complaints.
These lines of questions have little to do with public safety or law enforcement. Rather DoJ and local law enforcement are more concerned about 1983 claims liability and the prospect of continued budget cuts.
DoJ and local law enforcement have a problem with internal controls and funds management. Despite allocating funds to local law enforcement, local law enforcement continues to deny receiving DoJ funds; all the wile DoJ funding provides cursory auditing of those funds. It was only recently that DoJ audits revealed that local law enforcement was actually receiving funds, but those funds were not being expended on the primary purposes. Rather, these funds were knowingly diverted to non-DoJ efforts, and expended against baseline programs.
It remains to be understood through discovery, external audits, and other 1983 claims whether the scope of the funding misallocations was known just within the departments, or also known at the larger levels at the municipal government levels. What is most disturbing is that at a time when management continued to publicly assert that there were whistle blower protections and that the public should come forward with information, management continued to suggest that the issues would never get looked into. More disturbing is that it appears to be a widespread practice for management at both the local and federal level to assert that the “real problem” lies with those who are making the reports, and not those within DoJ who are engaging the misconduct.
It is noteworthy that at a time when the US Solicitor General publicly asserted before the US Supreme Court that US “doesn’t torture” anyone, FBI, CIFA, JTTF, and DoD personnel were engaging in practices contrary to both federal and international law.
DoJ has a credibility problem. At this juncture, it remains questionable whether any of the information coming out of DoJ should be relied upon. Recall that it was Arthur Andersen, now out of business and barred from conducting audit engagements in the United States, which was called into conduct audits and provide feedback to DoJ on management practices. Despite hiring outside consultants to assist with these known problems, DoJ continues to have a problem with both statutory compliance and in funds management.
There is a reasonable basis to believe that DoJ management has staged the FALCON program not so much as a real show of force, but in a diversion effort to muddy the waters from DoJ’s continuing leadership problem. Recall that Gonzalez was actively writing memos at the time that the US was publicly asserting there was no torture problem. It is well within the scope of possibility the White House is well aware of the illusion going on.
It is problematic that at a time when DoJ was supposedly conducting these operations, personnel within DoJ and local law enforcement engaged in activities totally outside this “primary goal.” If DoJ is to believed [that this “massive operation” that was conducted over a full week was real], then we should be hearing anecdotal reports of agents no longer being available, or that issues that would otherwise command attention would be sidelined.
But this is not the case. Rather, at a time when conducting lower priority issued of chasing petit criminals who were known, had dossiers within FBI, and were outstanding issues, DoJ was actively choosing to take no action on safety of life issues.
The contrast is noteworthy. DoJ would like the world to believe that they have a massive database, and that during FALCON DOJ and local law enforcement were cleaning up the database.
There is one small problem. Why is DoJ and local law enforcement now creating for themselves a workload problem? By directing there to be a massive sweep and increased number of arrests, DoJ is contributing to the backload problem. Rather, a more effective and credible program would involve some sort of gradual ramp-up, and a chance for DoJ personnel to gradually transition from one program to the FALCON.
Also, FALCON is too short lived to be either credible or real. Again, if this program were real, DoJ personnel would have been gradually detailed, allocated, and fully funded to support this program. Nor would DoJ do this for only one week. Rather, if FALCON were a true program, the “massive sweep” would have generated a blip in DoJ operations, paperwork, and then subsided.
Again, we so no evidence to suggest that the FALCON program was credibly supported by personnel either detailed to the program; or that there were noticeable gaps within the existing coverage; or that the “high priority” of the FALCON program required resources to be transferred from “low priority” items to something larger and more important.
On the contrary, it appears that during the FALCON program DoJ and local law enforcement were continuing to engage in the same practices: Continuing to work with local informants to gather information about “suspicious activity” that was fairly benign; continue to rebuff reasonable requests for assistance; continue to establish relationships with local non-law enforcement entities; and continue to spend law enforcement resources and personnel to mitigate the chances of 1983 claims, all the while doing nothing to address the real causes of the 1983 claims.
Rather, at time when the FALCON program was apparently underway, law enforcement showed no visible sign that they were involved in anything out of the ordinary. Rather, officers, agents and management continued to engage in the same practices that precipitated both the Abu Ghraib Scandals, and the conditions that should have warranted increased Congressional oversight in the wake of 9-11.
Rather, FALCON appears more of a diversion program to deflect criticism from DoJ’s continuing management problems. Recall that it was in the wake of 9-11 that DoJ asserted there were other hijackers [which were illusory]; then that there were 10,000 AlQueda running around [which were also illusory].
Also, recall that DoJ has a problem in Minnesota. Not only is this the place where Missoui’s computer was not effectively investigated [despite the 52 FAA warnings about hijackings and threats to FAA assets].
Again, the number of 9-11 participants was allegedly relatively small, yet in the wake of 9-11 under the Patriot Act DoJ was granted expansive, and arguably unconstitutional, powers to detain, harass, and otherwise engage in reckless behavior.
Yet, despite all this power, DoJ missed the fatal shootings in Red Lake. Why were there no benefits or rewards associated with these increased government powers? Surely, if the “lessons of 9-11” were real, then when DoJ was given more power to tap telephone lines, and share intelligence with NSA, then Echelon allies would have picked up on the computer emails detailing the attacks.
Yet, despite the Patriot Act and power to use Echelon intercepts from Canada, FBI agents did nothing to intervene in Red Lake. In short, the public was duped into going along with the Patriot Act without getting any increase in security.
At the same time, it is now self-evident that the increased sunlight and exposure of flawed White House programs is the needed antidote to non-sense. It was only through the close scrutiny of the President’s flawed Social Security “solution,” that the public has now reversed itself. No longer does the White House enjoy unchallenged authority to issue edicts without public discussion.
It is noteworthy that the same White House could not withstand the same pressures and scrutiny in re the decision to go to war in Iraq. Yet, this is the same entity, creating the same policies.
The only different is that the White House in re Social Security couldn’t escape the debate. The White House started the debate.
Yet, with respect to the Patriot Act, the White House wants to have a double standard: No public debate.
Thus, FALCON was created to give DoJ something apparently to do, and divert attention from the flaws which continue to exist within DoJ. Again, if the Patriot Act “solution” was truly credible, then DoJ would not need to publicly announce something that should be going on behind closed doors: Examining computers. Under the Patriot Act, this examination should have already been underway, and this information should have been cross flowed to CIA, NSA, and FBI counterintelligence as a potential problem.
But DoJ committed a fatal error at Red Lake. First, it publicly stated that it had a number of suspects and was going after the computers. This is problematic. At no time are investigators supposed to reveal sources and methods. Further, if FBI was truly going after the computers, why would FBI reveal to the world the communication methods? This revelation does nothing to address the investigation, and does more to dissuade those who might be “under surveillance” to no longer use that communication method.
Second, FBI and DoJ also have a routine habit of saying “We do not disclose ongoing investigations.” IF that is true, why the revelations about Richard Jewel in 1996; and why the disclosure at Red Lake about the status of the ongoing investigation?
Answer: DoJ needs to show that it is doing something, despite the disaster. Yet, again, if DoJ was truly a credible partner in the war on crime, then under the Patriot Act DoJ would have used the expansive powers, FISA, and wiretap ability to secretly monitor those who were doing bad things.
This did not occur at Red Lake. Thus, we are reminded of the DoJ and FBI management problems when we read of the continuing harassment of Sibel Edmonds. Has Sibel been afforded any compensation for the harassment she has endured?
I see no evidence that FBI and DoJ are accepting responsibility for what their own employees are identifying, much less being responsive to either Congress or international law.
Thus, going forward, I am little persuaded that DoJ has suddenly turned over a new leaf. Rather, DoJ under Gonzales has become more politicized, continues with the same games, and does not want to admit that despite the arguable unconstitutional Patriot Act, FBI and DOJ can’t do the job.
The problem isn’t that the terrorists are hiding. DoJ and FBI management now admit in open reports that there is no basis to claim that there are 10,000 AlQueda running around.
SO what’s the problem? Despite getting “increased oversight” in the wake of both 9-11 and torture at Abu Ghraib, Congress continues to defer back to DoJ on matters that Congress needs to take an active interest.
FALCON is part of the deception scheme. It has nothing to do with combating high priority programs, and does little to send a signal that anything has changed. Rather, DoJ is now simply using new methods to do what it has no plans on stopping:
We have yet to understand how the DoJ IG plans to audit the FALCON program. Nor do we have any basis to believe DoJ’s assertions about the level of effort for these programs.
Information useful for DoJ IG and Congress
Had FALCON been a real program, law enforcement would have been both diverted from their “waste of time” efforts; and would have had a decrease in response time and public visibility. Moreover, officers would have had a higher chance of being busy, involved, and a lower chance of being seen patrolling around, or engaging in the normal meal time get together.
Again, we see no evidence that the pre-FALCON officer conduct has changed, or that they were so substantially burdened by FALCON that resources had to be diverted from normal law enforcement to the “higher priority” program.
Rather, we see evidence that the expected results [less likely to be seen, available] are exactly the opposite of what actually occurred. During the period when FALCON supposedly was in full swing, we continued to see officers and agents patrolling without effect, were not more likely to be stopped working on issues, and continued to engage in the mid-day and evening get-togethers.
This is not a sign of an overtaxed law enforcement or more effective management. Rather, it is the clear sign that FALCON was an illusory program, and there was no change in law enforcement conduct at the very time when DoJ would have the Congress believe that something was being done about the problems.
Yet, what is more troubling is that during this time when DoJ was supposedly focusing efforts to clean up the accounts, we can only wonder: “How many accounts and how much information do they have that they’re not looking at” now that FALCON is over?
This incorrectly assumes that FALCON was real; or that DoJ and local law enforcement has a strategy to deal with these problems.
Rather, the greater question to be explored is why, despite having all this “information” does law enforcement spend so much time investigating the source of complaints? If law enforcement was truly in the “crime fighting spirit,” the DoJ and local law enforcement would actually act on the information it has.
But, using DoJ’s own public statements, DoJ now admits that it has a “huge database” that it keeps on people, but does not effectively use.
Why is so much energy spent on gathering new information and sources?
If this intelligence was so good, why weren’t there more effective responses to what was happening at Red Lake?
How can anyone argue that local law enforcement was involved with FALCON, given that local law enforcement doesn’t have the time, interest, or budget to cover existing requirements/
What type of re-imbursement program does DoJ plan to use to re-imburse local law enforcement for their support for FALCON?
Answer; There’s no plan to reimburse local law enforcement for an illusory program; and there’s no reason to believe DoJ or local law enforcement have the resources to ensure that any FALCON-reimbursements actually go to the intended programs. The current financial controls both within DoJ and local law enforcement are weak, and Congress has yet to credibly argue that it has effective oversight of either DoJ, law enforcement, or the DoJ IG.
It is troubling that this late in the game after 9-11 and the Abu Ghraib torture events that DoJ would have the world believe they have a large database of information. Yet, why is DoJ waiting to get people? Why isn’t this information sent out gradually so that personnel can be gradually ramped up?
Answer: FALCON has no credible foundation in reality. It appears to be nothing more than a PR stunt, with fabricated action, and there exists no basis to believe DoJ’s assertions that the activities, workload, or results are real.
We have yet to have any credible independent review of the results, nor any credible reason to believe that DoJ’s self-reported results should be believed. Recall, the US Solicitor General and the US President have both lied about both WMD and torture; there’s no reason to believe they’re going to suddenly be truthful about FALCON.
DoJ’s major credibility problem with FALCON is their inability to find people. One example is the 1996 Olympic Bombing in Atlanta. Suddenly in 2005 the world is suddenly asked to believe FBI is on top of things. Strange, Richard Jewel suffered a problem.
Also, if local law enforcement really had their act together, they wouldn’t have to go on fishing trips. They would know what people were doing; and federal and local law enforcement would not have to engage in ruses to distract attention from their pretextual stops.
Further, if local law enforcement really could find people, there would be no reason for law enforcement to harass willing informants. Rather, if DOJ is to be believed, there should be a huge warehouse of information which DoJ and local law enforcement have at their disposal.
This may be true, but it’s not for law enforcement. There is a non-criminal database which law enforcement uses and links with Choice Point; and the FBI also has the I-drive. Both of which are not effectively managed, despite the SAIC contract efforts to remedy the problem. We have yet to understand why DoJ would hire SAIC despite the allegations of problems with SAIC on other government programs in re responsiveness, task completion, and effectiveness in working with government program management personnel.
In short, the more you look at FALCON, local law enforcement, and DOJ the more one realizes that things are not adding up. DoJ is so poorly managed that it’s agents could not recognize real intelligence given to them when they saw it. Their SACs and ASACs are notoriously unqualified. It remains to be understood why personnel with non-criminal backgrounds and emphasis could possibly rise to positions of “leadership” in an organization designed to fight crime.
Again, if the SACs truly had any credibility, they would discuss in house the problems with the OPR on why their agents continue to rebuff information, and knowingly provide misleading information on whether allegations did or did not fall under the FBI umbrella. Again, the SACs, despite their ability to consult both HR, OPR, and in-house counsel 24/7, continue to promote and give accolades to agents who can be called nothing more than bungling idiots.
To reiterate, there is no basis to believe DoJ or FBI have the requisite management systems or personnel in place to effectively manage the existing data. It remains unclear why, despite the existing databases, and this information is not used and applied.
Rather, because the FALCON program was announced in the wake of Red Lake, it is far more likely that this program is related more as a diversion from the FBI’s continuing data management and evidence gathering programs. Again, FBI agents have yet to credibly demonstrate that they can effectively handle, manage, summarized, or use incoming information but for a disaster on their hands.
FBI is not geared to prospective intelligence gathering. At best, FBI is more suited to shows of force, and plodding methodical analysis of things in the distant past. Yet, the recent revelations of Sibel Edmonds now cast this in a different light. Even the primary responsibility under DoJ and FBI remains something they cannot effectively handle: Gathering evidence; managing informants; and getting reliable information before the prosecutors.
Rather, DoJ and local law enforcement continue to enjoy a “hands off” approach from the prosecutors. Continued trumped up charges before the courts get no sanctions. Rather, law enforcement is rewarded for not only brining in innocent people, but has specific technical groups set up to fabricate evidence.
We have seen in the wake of the RNC demonstrations that law enforcement will collectively gather photographic evidence and doctor it. In some instances, entire segments of video were destroyed, removed, or rearranged to create a false impression before the courts.
Something like this is not isolated, nor does it develop overnight. Rather, the evidence fabrication-industry appears to be something that law enforcement not only uses but actively supports and quietly funds, despite the insufficient funding for lawful purposes.
Law enforcement in the United States has more than a credibility problem. It has a constitutional crisis in the making. At each juncture, the public is lectured about “public safety,” and that the public in the wake of the 9-11 is required to put up with more intrusions and abuse.
Yet, in practice, it is law enforcement that both contributed to the problem [with their inaction] and the continuing lack of public confidence in law enforcement [because of their demonstrated poor management approaches].
Other evidence which outside investigators may wish to look into include:
This is important because during the FALCON operation, we should have seen an increase in number of 1983 claims, and evidence that the primary calls were not getting adequately response times.
Also, if there was a FALCON program going on, the officers would have a backlog on the lower priority items. We should be seeing some noticeable evidence that the officers were working late. Again, we have yet to understand why despite the FALCON operation the offices still had enough time to casually patrol and engage in meal time breaks well away from their primary location and activity.
It is not unknown for law enforcement to backdate. Yet, during FALCON there were supposed to be a number of increased arrests. If you are aware of files and arrest reports being fabricated, or action reports being made up, then you have some valuable information.
Law enforcement is known to assign budgets to tasks unrelated to DOJ activities. This is another way of saying that law enforcement will use the ruse of a Federal Grant to cover higher priority items which local government cannot afford; in so many words, this is the same as saying to yours spouse that you need some money for an office event, all the while the money is actually spent supporting their drug habit.
Are you enraged by the deception? It is likely that the actual funds that local law enforcement spent “supporting FALCON’ were not actually spent on FALCON related activity. Rather, FALCON could simply be a ruse to inject federal funds to the local level to get them over the 6-month hump between annual appropriations.
There is little evidence that despite media having sources with local law enforcement, that the media will aggressively review the matter. Rather, despite public assertions that the media is there “to serve,” local and national media are far more likely to rebuff information and claim it is “outside their area,” that to seriously look into the matter.
Recall, the same media which didn’t ask probing questions about WMD and Iraq, kicked itself and said, “We’ll do better.” Yet, where are the probing questions from media? Oh, that’s right. If they talk about what’s really going on inside law enforcement, the media risks losing their sources. Yet, why is anyone in the media worried about “losing a source” that is unreliable?
Other situations to watch out for when examining FALCON is the issue of what intelligence law enforcement was gathering at the time. There is no credible basis to believe that FALCON was occurring, at t time when local law enforcement continued to collect non-criminal activity, going so far as to aggressively intimidate those engage in discovery for 1983 claims.
Rather, what is important is to look at the times that the intelligence was gathered; and then compare these times to the times that FALCON was supposedly occurring. There is no reason to believe that FALCON was occurring when officers were working on, writing reports, and updating their non-criminal databases at the same time.
As the word leaks out about the scope of the FALCON deception, you can bet that there’s going to be some backdating of reports. Problem: If the number of cases accepted remained the same, and the reports continued to get processed at the time when FALCON was occurring, law enforcement has a problem: They cannot say that they are so overburdened to require shifting funds from DOJ, and at the same time say that they were so busy with FALCON but still able to process the reports.
Rather, the reports from this reporting period need to be reviewed to ensure that they were appropriately investigated, handled, closed out; and at the same time that if they were supporting FALCON that there were real reports and incoming calls that were not getting addressed.
Again, we see no evidence that FALCON provided any unusual workload; or that FALCON related events caused such a hardship that normal calls were delayed. At worst, despite FALCON, officers continued to engage in the same intelligence gathering, low priority items, and efforts to dissuade and gather intelligence in re possible 1983 claims.
It remains to be explained why law enforcement efforts were used, dedicated, assigned to investigate non-criminal activity at the time when FALCON was in full swing; and why official government resources were used to gather for insurance companies information on potential 1983 litigants. This has nothing to do with public safety and everything to do with intimidation and reducing the litigation risk and insurance premiums for an otherwise high risk enterprise.
Such trends do little to inspire public confidence, and the activities do little to suggest that the FALCON program was real. Rather, despite FALCON, law enforcement continued their activities related to non-criminal intelligence gathering; and continued to engage in unofficial business at a time when they would no like the world to believe that their resources were being exhausted and tapped out.
Nothing law enforcement says should be taken on face value. They are well known and proven liars. They will lie to avoid 1983 claims. They do fabricate evidence. And they have their attorneys go before the US Supreme Court to lie about what their officers and agents engage: War crimes.
If law enforcement is to be believed [that there was a FALCON program going on]. Then during this period there should have been a noticeable increase in number of anonymous calls.
Anonymous calls are related to suspicious activity. When there is a law enforcement event unfolding, the citizens’ eyes and ears are tuned. Yet, we have yet to understand why, during the FALCON program, the anonymous calls were handled differently; or whether the personnel associated with these anonymous calls were associated with an intelligence gathering activity.
Rather, we do have evidence that despite reasonable concerns about complaints not getting addressed, that law enforcement was actively seeking identifies of the anonymous complaints; and going so far as to link initial information and inputs with the identifies of the anonymous callers.
Law enforcement is not unknown to listen in on calls and directly contact those allegedly engage in criminal activity to find out who may or may not have an interest in reporting criminal activity.
Again, this does little to inspire confidence in law enforcement; or that they are actually doing something related to FALCON. Rather, such activity smacks more of harassment, and does little to inspire confidence in DOJ claims that the public was getting served.
Rather, the public was getting served u more non-sense to distract attention from the continuing law enforcement management problems both at the federal and local levels.
We have yet to understand why the auditors have failed to credibly review this misconduct; or why the Field Training Offices in local law enforcement deem it appropriate to instruct their new trainees in methods that are contrary to public policy.
If the auditing system had any credibility, we would see auditors doing more no-notice visits of the FTOs; and the FTOs would be put under greater scrutiny and have more effective management. Again, we see the opposite.
Despite concerns with the FTOs’ the management oversight and control of the FTOs appears to be weak. This comes at a time when DOJ wants the world to believe that they can handle something more complicated like FALCON. This is absurd.
The only way that FALCON could be considered a real, credible threat or an effective program is if the smaller, more benign activity related to FTO oversight was fully funded. Again, this is not the case. Management would have us believe that they are doing a good job of managing their troops; all the while their oversight is tenuous at best.
Fuel Burn Rates
If FALCON was a real program we should see an increase in the fuel burn rate per incident per time.
It remains unclear who DOJ can justify these fuel consumption rates: To be involved in the FALCON activity would require non-use [while stopped] of fuel.
How can law enforcement be in the same place at two times? Again, if FALCON was occurring, the officers would have to spend that time not investigating others things; yet, we have no evidence that the response times were low.
On the contrary, despite FALCON, law enforcement still had the time after closing out cases, to then follow-up and inquire about the identifies of anonymous sources; and engage in 1983-mitigation activities.
This does little to inspire confidence that FALCON was either well managed, or was effective. At best, it’s merely a ruse to explain away something else.
Rather it appears at though there are credible reasons to suspect the FALCON effort is a ruse to justify continued funding for activities which local officials have neither the will or resources to fund.
It remains unclear why, despite the infinite wisdom of local officials, outside personnel suddenly know better and are more adeptly suited to dictate how these resources are to be used.
What’s needed is a sample of the number of calls to verify those incoming calls were real and that they were appropriately handled.
If these calls were real, then we should be able to follow-up on these incidents, find the details, and ensure that the calls were appropriately handled.
On the other hand, if law enforcement says that the calls were “anonymous,” we need to ask what would suddenly prompt the public to shirt from being “identified” to “anonymous.”
We have little indication that the publicly was actively informed of the FALCON program, so there would be no indication that mysteriously during the FALCON program the number of people suddenly saying, “I don’t want to be identified” would increase.
Rather, what should be happening is that the number of anonymous callers [as a percentage of total calls] should be consistent; and the outside auditors should be able to find a relationship between the numbers of calls prior to, during, and after FALCON in terms of anonymous vs. non-anonymous calls.
If there are spikes in the number of anonymous calls, this should be suspect. If the number or falls handled during FALCON was level, then the question should be asked how these were credibly closed out of time if personnel were assigned to FALCON.
We are aware of no new software program that would suddenly permit offices to more quickly file reports. These software programs are already in place. Nor are there any known technologies that would both enable offices to close out reports, also work on FALCON, and at the same time have the resources to discover the identifies of non-criminal informants who are engaged in 1983 discovery and litigation-related activity.
Again, we have on evidence that the number of rebuffed complaints has increased; only that law enforcement at both local and federal levels continued to engage in the same practices: Continuing to rebuff information.
If there was a real FALCON program, we would expect to hear anecdotal evidence that there had been some sort of change in the response times, willingness to work with locals and take complaints. Yet, despite the pervasive pattern of rebuffing information and engaging in violations warranting 1983 claims, we hear nothing that law enforcement was so busy with FALCON that the number of rebuffed complaints spiked.
At best, the local harassment, unresponsiveness, and law enforcement games continued at a very even pace. Yet if FALCON were real we would hear more about law enforcement taking more time to respond; or that law enforcement was taking longer to address issues.
Again, we see no evidence that law enforcement was so busy during this period that the normal time delays and excuses for inaction were somehow spiking. Rather, law enforcement was able to timely respond to calls, close out reports, and continue to engage in intelligence gathering to intimidate people to bar 1983 claims.
During a large program, we should hear evidence of civil rights claims related to officer misconduct. At best, we hear of no massive increase in claims. This is not related to better training, but more likely related to an illusory program which never occurred.
Recommendations for DoJ IG and outside, independent auditors
DoJ needs to provide credible, independent data to back-up the claims on personnel captured, detained during FALCON.
The FALCON results are dubious. At a time when FALCON supposedly was occurring, we see no evidence that other activities were impaired; or that personnel were out of their normal work schedules to support this “massive” effort.
DoJ needs to explain why a large number of people who were apparently easily found, were left wandering out; why this information was not used earlier; and why law enforcement continues to gather non-criminal intelligence related to mitigating 1983 liability
FALCON, if it is to be believed, occurred at time with both local and federal law enforcement have yet to demonstrate they can manage existing intelligence information, much less criminal related matter.
We have yet to understand the scope of the database backlog problem at both the federal and local levels; and why so much effort is expended to capture non-criminal data, other than to mitigate 1983 claims.
DoJ and local law enforcement need to provide baseline data on:
FALCON cannot be credibly believed because non-FALCON related efforts continued yet we see no evidence the FALCON related workload interfered. This is not a sign of better case management, but a ruse to create the illusion FALCON was real.
FBI Patriot Act