North American News


Suicide Pills Needed in Fight Against ISIS?

26th April 2017

(Originally published 2015)

The fate of any American captured by the Islamic State group seems clear: They will be brutally murdered with much fanfare, and footage of their tortuous death will be widely circulated in a well-produced propaganda film.

The group has beheaded American, British and Japanese journalists and humanitarians on tape and earlier this month released a film showing the grisly death of a Jordanian pilot burned to death in a cage after his plane went down while participating in U.S.-led airstrikes.

With the grim prospect of capture in mind, analysts say the military should at least consider offering  some of the troops working against the jihadi group, also known as ISIS or ISIL, the means to take their own lives with a so-called “suicide pill.”

U.S. pilots bombing Islamic State locations in Syria and Iraq currently are not provided pills that would cause a quick death, nor are the 3,000 on-the-ground troops helping shore up an unreliable Iraqi military and guarding U.S. facilities, military officials say.

Suicide pills are a common element of spy thrillers and works of fiction, but only decades ago they were manufactured and distributed by the U.S. government, with shellfish poison and cyanide pills provided to pilots and spies for use to avoid capture by Nazis and Soviets.

Today, armed forces spokesmen say providing troops such pills would be inconsistent with military values, even in the face of excruciating alternatives at the hands of the sadistic self-declared caliphate that gleefully flouts Geneva Convention principles on prisoner treatment.

“Pilots are trained to evade capture or resist and escape,” says U.S. Air Force spokeswoman Ann Stefanek, who confirmed the force’s in-theater command does not provide such pills. “If pilots do go down, the Air Force will employ all its resources to locate, protect and recover them.”

Thus far, U.S. attempts to rescue Americans, such as journalists James Foley and Steven Sotloff and aide workers Peter “Abdul-Rahman” Kassig and Kayla Mueller, have failed. In one publicized rescue attempt, commandos stormed a suspected dungeon but were too late. And, unlike other countries who have met financial demands from the Islamic State, the public position of the U.S. government is that it will not pay ransoms to free hostages.

Like the Air Force, other military branches say they don’t provide suicide pills. Army spokesman Matthew Bourke says “suicide pills aren’t included in the solider kit bag” for troops working near the jihadis. Lt. Col. John Caldwell of the U.S. Marine Corps says it “seems highly unlikely” the service – which has about 320 members on a western Iraq air base ISIS recently attacked – would do so.

Maj. Curtis Kellogg, a spokesman for U.S. Central Command, the military entity coordinating anti-Islamic State actions, says he “would bet your children’s college fund” no branch of the U.S. military offers – or would offer – suicide pills to at-risk personnel.

“The mere thought of it is not congruent with our military values whatsoever nor our code of conduct,” Kellogg says.

The government lacked such lofty convictions at various points in the last century. During World War II, the Office of Strategic Services – the CIA’s forerunner – produced two types of suicide pills for sensitive operations, and research and development continued into the first half of the Cold War

In 1975, CIA Director William Colby told Congress the agency had worked with the Army Biological Warfare Laboratories at Fort Detrick, Maryland, to build on OSS’s work, developing a shellfish toxin-based suicide option to supplement the agency’s cyanide “L-pills.”

Colby told members of the Church Committee – a Senate panel headed by Democratic Sen. Frank Church of Indiana that investigated intelligence practices – that “a considerable amount of work was done in developing concealment schemes” for the shellfish poison, which kills in seconds at low doses.

Colby admitted to just one instance where the shellfish poison was dispensed, in 1960, when poison hidden in a silver dollar was issued to U-2 spy pilot Francis Gary Powers, who was shot down over the Soviet Union but declined to kill himself.

Francis Gary Powers Jr. says his father removed the poison from the coin while in his parachute and contemplated using it to avoid torture. Instead, he “decided to hide it in one of his flight suit pockets in case he needed to use it once on the ground.” Powers told KGB agents what it was during a third strip search, his son says, to ensure they didn’t accidentally kill themselves. He was exchanged for a Soviet spy in 1962.

“He obviously did not use it, and was not instructed to do so; it was offered to him to provide him with the option,” said Colby, who said other pilots had been issued cyanide pills.

An inventory of a CIA building’s toxic wares published by the Church Committee recorded 18 cyanide L-pills and more than 11.4 grams of shellfish poison – enough for hundreds of thousands of lethal doses – which former CIA chemist Nathan Gordon testified was retained to “prepare supplies of suicide pills and/or any other uses.”

Some experts say it might be worth considering equipping troops with suicide pills in the present conflict – but point out it would neither be an easy decision or one that would necessary accomplish its goals.

“Perhaps the military could consider, quietly, making such [pills] available if an individual wants to have them,” say Richard Kohn, a military history expert at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, “even if it somehow seems to buy into this awful enemy’s cult of death.”

But Kohn sees competing interests.

“We’re a society that believes in individual choice,” he says, but suggesting suicide to troops may seem to violate “the norm of ‘leave no one behind.’”

Retired Army Col. Lawrence Wilkerson, a Vietnam War veteran who served as Secretary of State Colin Powell’s chief of staff, says “perhaps the issuance of such a pill … should be made a voluntary matter for the troops involved.”

But Wilkerson points out there would be “many problems and complexities” doing so

“For example, some no doubt will refuse to use the pill, believing they will survive,” he says. “Or, indeed, a soldier might use it and rescue be possible but useless since the pill has been used.”

Wilkerson, now a professor at the College of William and Mary, says on-the-ground members of the military in conflict zones almost certainly are armed and suicide pills may not augment their options.

A gun “is always an ‘out’ to prevent capture – it always has been,” he says.

Martin Cook, a professor of professional military ethics at the U.S. Naval War College, says military leaders he’s spoken with are against the idea.

Widely dispensing the pills could contribute to the military’s existing problem with suicide among members, he says.

“At most, you’d be thinking about issuing it on the eve of a specific mission that’s high-risk,” Cook says, such as on-the-ground personnel guiding of airstrikes or perhaps embedded missions with Iraqi troops.

But Cook says troops are highly trained to resist detention and generally would view suicide as needless while potential opportunities for escape exist.

“Even when they’re walking you out to the execution site, there might be a SEAL team inbound,” Cook says, adding a Navy SEAL admiral told him he’s never heard of suicide pills as a consideration.

U.S. airstrikes began against the Islamic State group in August as militants plunged into Iraqi Kurdistan after seizing Mosul. The strikes were expanded to Syria in August after the group released videos of Foley and Sotloff being beheaded

John Hall, a lieutenant colonel in the U.S. Army Reserve and a military historian at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, says he could see some members of the military carrying suicide pills, but doubts the practice would be widespread.

“Spies and soldiers are distant cousins with some of the same attributes but vastly different professional ethics,” he says in an email. “The expansion of the Special Operations community has, however, complicated this distinction, and the idea of deep ‘black ops’ personnel carrying suicide pills does not strike me as outrageous – nor would it anyone else, as their deaths will never be publicly acknowledged.”

But, he says, beyond that narrow category, “I don’t think American military – let alone civilian – culture would tolerate such measures.”

source: https://www.usnews.com/news/articles/2015/02/19/suicide-pills-needed-in-fight-against-isis-death-cult?int=news-rec

Feds to Deploy Facial Recognition Tech at Border Checkpoints

20th April 2016

U.S. Customs and Border Protection is planning to unveil a facial recognition program that will track visa holders at U.S. airports while using the same technology on drones to patrol the southern border.

The system, called Biometric Exit, is currently being tested on a one-way flight from Atlanta to Tokyo and is expected to be rolled out to more airports this summer after being expedited by the Trump Administration, according to a report from The Verge.

The current practice used by Customs and Border Protection agents is to take photos and fingerprints of every visa holder who enters the U.S., but there is no system in place to verify that a visa holder has left before their visa expires. This is where Biometric Exit comes in.

Passengers will have their photos taken at the airport before boarding flights, that photo will cross-reference with “passport-style photos provided with the visa application.” If there is no match, then that will raise flags about whether the visitor entered the United States illegally.

U.S. Customs and Border Protection’s (CBP) Larry Panetta, who is leading the airport segment of the project, said, “We currently have everyone’s photo, so we don’t need to do any sort of enrollment. We have access to the Department of State records so we have photos of US Citizens, we have visa photos, we have photos of people when they cross into the US and their biometrics are captured into [DHS biometric database] IDENT.”

President Trump expedited the implementation of Biometric Exit when he signed the executive order, “Protecting the Nation from Foreign Terrorist Entry Into The United States,” the same document that called for the temporary halt of immigrants from seven Middle Eastern countries.

“Sec. 7.  Expedited Completion of the Biometric Entry-Exit Tracking System.  (a)  The Secretary of Homeland Security shall expedite the completion and implementation of a biometric entry-exit tracking system for all travelers to the United States, as recommended by the National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States,” the executive order states.

The CBP is also looking to use facial recognition at the border to help identify any person that is in relevant law enforcement databases.

Officials with the CBP solicited proposals from companies for small unmanned aerial systems (sUAS), like consumer drones, for deployment by Border Patrol agents along the southern border.

The agency is specifically looking for a drone that is small enough that it can fit into a truck, weighs under 55 pounds, and is deployable by a single agent in less than 5 minutes. Officials also want a drone fitted with state-of-the-art sensor technology which reportedly may include, “infrared cameras and facial-recognition capabilities.”

A document included with the solicitation, Small Unmanned Aircraft Systems (sUAS) Capabilities, said the agency is looking for a drone that can, “distinguish between natural and artificial features, and between animals, humans, and vehicles at long range.”

The same document also states that the agency is looking for a drone that, “would have facial recognition capabilities that allow it cross-reference any persons identified with relevant law enforcement databases.”

The goal will be to cross-reference the facial scans against multiple government databases that collect biometric information, including the FBI. “The bureau can draw from over 411 million photos spread across state and federal databases, including more than 173 million driver’s license photos, as part of the new biometric effort,” according to a government document that was analyzed by The Verge.

Ari Schuler, co-lead of CBP’s Silicon Valley office, which is managing the project, said that a drone that has these capabilities would allow Border Patrol Agents to identify traffickers who have violent criminal backgrounds, allowing the Agent the call backup.

Since large portions of the border lack cellular service, the biggest challenge for contractors is figuring out how to stream data from the drones. The CBP is also looking for a drone that is secure, not vulnerable to hacking.

The move to go from large military-style drones to small consumer ones comes from the disappointment the CBP has had with the Predator. A report from 2014 shows that the cost to operate 10 Predators over the course of a year exceeded $60 million. The drones failed to lower the cost of border surveillance and were vulnerable to GPS jamming and other attacks.

 

 

source:http://www.breitbart.com/texas/2017/04/19/feds-deploy-facial-recognition-tech-border-checkpoints/

CIA, FBI launch manhunt for leaker who gave top-secret documents to WikiLeaks

20th April 2017

CBS News has learned that a manhunt is underway for a traitor inside the Central Intelligence Agency.

The CIA and FBI are conducting a joint investigation into one of the worst security breaches in CIA history, which exposed thousands of top-secret documents that described CIA tools used to penetrate smartphones, smart televisions and computer systems.

Sources familiar with the investigation say it is looking for an insider — either a CIA employee or contractor — who had physical access to the material. The agency has not said publicly when the material was taken or how it was stolen.

Much of the material was classified and stored in a highly secure section of the intelligence agency, but sources say hundreds of people would have had access to the material. Investigators are going through those names.

The trove was published in March by the anti-secrecy organization WikiLeaks

In his first public comments as director of the CIA just last week, Mike Pompeo railed against WikiLeaks and its founder Julian Assange.

“It is time to call out WikiLeaks for what it really is: A non-state hostile intelligence service often abetted by state actors like Russia,” he said.

WikiLeaks has said it obtained the CIA information from former contractors who worked for U.S. intelligence. The CIA has not commented on the authenticity of the WikiLeaks disclosures or on the status of the investigation.

 

source:http://www.cbsnews.com/news/cia-fbi-on-manhunt-for-leaker-who-gave-top-secret-documents-to-wikileaks/

Battle intensifies between Trump’s CIA, WikiLeaks

15th april 2017

The battle between the CIA and WikiLeaks is intensifying.

CIA Director Mike Pompeo used his first major public remarks on Thursday to skewer WikiLeaks as a “non-state hostile intelligence service” willing to work with Russia and other foreign actors to promote their interests.

He blasted Julian Assange as a “fraud” interested in his own fame, seeking to undermine efforts by the WikiLeaks founder to be viewed as a legitimate ally of civil libertarians.

“It is time to call out WikiLeaks for what it really is, a non-state hostile intelligence service often abetted by state actors like Russia,” Pompeo said.“Assange is a narcissist who has created nothing of value,” the former Republican congressman charged. “He relies on the dirty work of others to make himself famous. He is a fraud—a coward hiding behind a screen.”

WikiLeaks was quick to respond, sending out a series of messages on Twitter claiming that Pompeo vowed to “silence” the organization over its purported disclosures of CIA hacking tools and using his remarks to promote an op-ed written by Assange in the Washington Post.

In the op-ed, Assange wrote that WikiLeaks had the same mission as news outlets such as the Post and The New York Times.

The organization also mocked Pompeo by sending out a since-deleted tweet he wrote last July, when the former Kansas lawmaker cited stolen Democratic National Committee emails released by WikiLeaks as proof that the presidential nomination had been “fixed” for Hillary Clinton.

Pompeo’s speech was a wide departure from President Trump’s praise of WikiLeaks on the campaign trail. Trump and his administration have taken a much more hostile approach to WikiLeaks since taking office.

U.S. national security experts welcomed Pompeo’s comments as a signal that the new director was taking a hard line on an organization that has leaked information damaging to American interests.

“I think what [Pompeo] did was putting him on notice, which I think is exactly the right thing to do,” James Carafano, a national security expert at the conservative Heritage Foundation, said. “I think he’s throwing down the gauntlet.”

But the speech was not warmly embraced by all. Journalist Glenn Greenwald, who published documents leaked by Edward Snowden, slammed Pompeo for his remarks, accusing him of “explicitly” threatening free speech and press freedoms.

“WikiLeaks now has few friends in Washington,” Greenwald wrote in The Intercept. “But the level of affection for WikiLeaks should have no bearing on how one responds to these press freedom threats from Donald Trump’s CIA Director. Criminalizing the publication of classified documents is wrong in itself, and has the obvious potential to spread far beyond their initial target.”

WikiLeaks for weeks has needled the CIA by releasing troves of leaked documents allegedly revealing the agency’s hacking programs.

The releases, called “Vault 7,” contain documents describing hacking techniques used by the CIA, such as tools to breach mobile devices and hack into smart televisions, as well as other internal communications.

Hours after Pompeo’s speech, WikiLeaks leaked yet another trove of documents that claimed to reveal information about a top-secret CIA hacking program called Hive.

Experts have largely described the contents of the periodic document releases as unsurprising, and evidence that the CIA is doing its job. Nevertheless, they have renewed the debate around privacy and intelligence community spying and also raised questions about the source of the leaks.

“Obviously, this hurts when other people know where you have been, what you have been thinking,” said former CIA Director Michael Hayden, who said that the documents show no abuse of the agency’s powers.

“There is the danger that even though these things might reflect appropriate activities that Americans don’t object to, the fact that you can’t keep the tools secret, the fact that you can’t keep the data you collect from other prying eyes, that creates a real big, strong argument for, ‘then I don’t want you doing it in the first place,’” Hayden said.

Some note that the leaks underscore the persisting problem of insider threats, which has been a major cause for concern since the leaks by former NSA contractor Edward Snowden and former soldier Chelsea Manning.

Pompeo acknowledged Thursday that the agency needs to strengthen its own systems to prevent leaks.

Adam Klein, a senior fellow at the Center for a New American Security, said that a major concern about WikiLeaks is that the organization provides an “outlet” for insider threats and encourages them.

“Insider threats are our intelligence agencies’ biggest security threat,” Klein told The Hill.

WikiLeaks has appeared to target CIA interns as potential sources of information. “CIA advertises internships. Whistleblowing opportunity?” the organized wrote on Twitter in mid-March.

“To the extent that there’s any news here, it’s that we have not gotten a handle on insider threats,” Klein said of the latest releases, noting that Congress should be concerned about the CIA leaks.

“I think it’s good news, frankly, that the CIA us thinking creatively about collecting information from foreign intelligence targets in the digital age,” Klein said.

The CIA has not confirmed the authenticity of any of the documents released, which Pompeo mentioned briefly on Thursday.

“As a policy, we at CIA do not comment on the accuracy of purported intelligence documents posted online,” Pompeo said. “In keeping with that policy, I will not specifically comment on the authenticity or provenance of recent disclosures.”

“But the false narratives that increasingly define our public discourse cannot be ignored,” he said.

 

source: http://thehill.com/policy/cybersecurity/328918-battle-intensifies-between-trumps-cia-wikileaks

Trump administration won’t release White House visitor logs

15th April 2017

The Trump administration will not voluntarily disclose logs of visitors to the White House complex, it announced Friday, breaking with the practice started under former President Obama.

The White House cited “the grave national security risks and privacy concerns” of people who visit the White House, according to Time. Officials said that keeping the visitor logs private is necessary to protect President Trump’s ability to seek advice from people “with some discretion.”

A limited number of records of visitors to White House departments, such as the Office of Management and Budget, will be accessible through Freedom of Information Act requests. But most will not, including those that apply to the president and his senior staff.

The announcement is likely to anger ethics and good-government watchdogs, who argue the public has the right to know who is visiting the White House.Three of those organizations sued the administration in federal court this week, demanding the logs be released.

“We hoped that the Trump administration would follow the precedent of the Obama administration and continue to release visitor logs, but unfortunately they have not,” Noah Bookbinder, executive director of Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, said in a statement.

Under the Trump administration’s policy, the records will be kept secret until five years after the president leaves office.

Since Trump took office Jan. 20, a section of the White House website where the visitor logs were posted under Obama has been left blank.

“This page is being updated. It will post records of White House visitors on an ongoing basis, once they become available,” the webpage reads.

The Obama administration’s decision to disclose visitor logs came in response to a series of lawsuits that began under former President George W. Bush. Records were posted online on a monthly basis for people who visited 90 to 120 days prior.
But exceptions were carved out for “purely personal guests of the first and second families” and “records related to a small group of particularly sensitive meetings.”
That often sparked criticism that the Obama White House was being less than forthcoming about who was visiting. For example, the first family hosted a “private” concert in 2015 headlined by Prince and Stevie Wonder that was attended by 500 people, including influential business figures and campaign supporters.
Those guests were not included in the publicly released visitor records.
As a private citizen in 2012, Trump criticized Obama for trying to hide public records.
“Why is @BarackObama spending millions to try and hide his records? He is the least transparent President–ever–and he ran on transparency,” he tweeted.

 

 

source:http://thehill.com/homenews/administration/328857-trump-administration-wont-release-white-house-visitor-logs

Trump’s Victory Brought Back Childhood ‘Trauma’

14th April 2017

Pop star Katy Perry — one of Hillary Clinton’s top celebrity endorsers during the 2016 presidential campaign — says Donald Trump’s victory brought back painful childhood trauma.

“I was really disheartened for a while; it just brought up a lot of trauma for me,” the 32-year-old “Chained to the Rhythm” singer said in a cover story interview for this month’s Vogue magazine. “Misogyny and sexism were in my childhood: I have an issue with suppressive males and not being seen as equal.”

“I felt like a little kid again being faced with a scary, controlling guy,” Perry added. “I wouldn’t really stand for it in my work life, because I have had so much of that in my personal life.”

Months after the election, Perry has established herself as a vocal member of the anti-Trump “Resistance” movement. A month after Trump’s inauguration, Perry performed at the 2017 Brit Awards alongside giant skeletons meant to skewer Trump and U.K. Prime Minister Theresa May. Just ten days prior, Perry performed at the 2017 Grammy Awards while wearing an armband that read “PERSIST,” along with a Planned Parenthood button.

The singer’s “purposeful” pop has introduced what the singer hopes will be a new era of political activism, a time that has coincided with an “awakening” of young people she says are now more politically engaged than ever before.

“It’s an awakening that was necessary because I think we were in a false utopia, we can’t ever get that stagnant again,” Perry explained. “I am so grateful that young people know the names of senators. I think teenage girls are going to save the world! That age group just seems to be holding people accountable. They have a really strong voice — and a loud one.”

Just this week, Perry posted a picture of Clinton sporting a pair of pumps, called The Hillary, that the singer says were inspired by the former secretary of state.

 

The $139 pumps, now for sale on Perry’s website, include a clear heel embedded with golden moon and stars meant to inspire those who wear them to “step in and reach for the stars.”

 

 

 

source: http://www.breitbart.com/big-hollywood/2017/04/13/katy-perry-trumps-victory-brought-up-a-lot-of-trauma/

Hackers post code in Trump protest: ‘Don’t forget about your base’

9th April 2017

An individual or group known for leaking complete computer code for apparently authentic, stolen NSA hacking tools released a new batch of computer code Saturday.

The leaker, dubbed “TheShadowBrokers,” claimed that the newest leak was a “form of protest” against President Trump not continuing the isolationist brand of populism that he campaigned on. Earlier leaks from the group were typically political in nature.

TheShadowBrokers claimed to be releasing samples from the NSA source code to draw attention to its auction. The latest leaks accompany a post titled “Don’t Forget About Your Base.”

In the group’s trademark broken English, the post reads, “TheShadowBrokers voted for you. TheShadowBrokers supports you. TheShadowBrokers is losing faith in you. Mr. Trump helping theshadowbrokers, helping you. Is appearing you are abandoning ‘your base’, ‘the movement’, and the peoples who getting you elected.”

The post goes on to cite “good evidence” of Trump shunning his base, pointing to the GOP’s death on healthcare reform last month, removing White House chief strategist Steve Bannon from the National Security Council principals committee and appointing Cabinet members from Goldman Sachs and the “Military Industrial Intelligence Complex.”

TheShadowBrokers debuted in August, leaking a large package of source code it claimed was from the toolkit of the Equation Group, a vaunted hacking operation long believed to be affiliated with the NSA. Between then and January, the group dumped two more packages of source code.

Though always in the context of advertising the sale of their wares, the Brokers have mentioned politics in prior posts, including a racist sketch about the Clinton campaign. In the group’s last message to the public in January, it claimed any prior mention of politics was meant for publicity.

Past releases by TheShadowBrokers appears to be authentic. The Intercept, the publication headed by the fount of Edward Snowden leaks, Glenn Greenwald, published that a tracking ID code that appeared in the Brokers’ files matched a previously unreleased code in the Snowden files.

Earlier files from the group, while years old, contained working computer code to exploit many previously unknown security flaws in popular cybersecurity hardware from Cisco and other manufacturers.

Those flaws sent cybersecurity companies into a frantic race to repair their products before hackers took advantage. Researchers ultimately did find malware in the wild, which used these product vulnerabilities.

It is unclear how TheShadowBrokers obtained the files.

 

source;http://thehill.com/policy/cybersecurity/327971-shadowbrokers-post-new-nsa-cyberweapons-in-pro-conservative-protest-of

BuzzFeed Sues the FBI Over Andrew Breitbart Records Request

8th April 2017

BuzzFeed wants some answers from the FBI about deceased conservative media figure Andrew Breitbart — and it’s willing to sue to find out.

BuzzFeed and journalist Jason Leopold have filed a complaint against the FBI, claiming that the bureau hasn’t done everything it can to answer their request for information on Breitbart.

The complaint, filed Friday in federal court in California, says that Leopold filed a Freedom of Information Act request with the FBI for “all records related to Andrew Breitbart” on Aug. 7, 2012, a few months after Breitbart died at age 43.

According to the suit, the FBI responded to the request on Sept. 4, but said that the bureau only searched it “main file records,” claiming that no records were located.

That was an inadequate effort, as far as the suit is contained.

The complaint says that Leopold appealed the FBI’s response but was denied by the U.S. Department of Justice Office of Information in 2013.

“In its appeal decision, OIP claimed that the FBI is not required to perform cross-reference searches unless the requester provides ‘information sufficient to enable the FBI to determine with certainty that any cross-references it locates are identifiable to the subject of [the] request,’ including, for example, the dates and locations of contacts between the subject of the request and the FBI, the subject’s social security number, or other such information,” the suit reads.

However, BuzzFeed and Leopold contend in the complaint, “Nothing in the FOIA statute requires a requester to provide this information before a cross-reference search must be conducted.”

“As FBI and OIP are certainly aware, Andrew Breitbart was a well-known public figure and is easily identifiable by the FBI in conducting a cross-reference search,” the suit reads. “As the FBI and OIP are also aware, cross-reference searches frequently turn up records not located in main file searches.”

Alleging violation of the Freedom of Information Act, the suit is asking the court to order the FBI to “conduct a reasonable search for records, including a cross-reference search, and to produce all non-exempt requested records.”

 

 

source: http://www.thewrap.com/buzzfeed-sues-the-fbi-over-andrew-breitbart-records-request/

MTV Movie Awards Scraps Gender-Specific Categories

8th April 2017

Audiences watching this year’s MTV Movie & TV Awards will not see some familiar categories.

The Viacom-owned network announced Friday that its flagship awards show would eliminate gender-specific categories for the first time. In lieu of categories like “Best Actress” and “Best Actor,” this year’s ceremony will honor “Best Actor in a Movie” and “Best Actor in a Show,” the Associated Press reports.

The move from MTV follows similar decisions among entertainment award shows to honor stars with non-gendered awards.

This month, Billions star Asia Kate Dillon, who identifies as gender non-binary, submitted for Emmy consideration under Best Supporting Actor, because the Television Academy allows anyone to submit under either Actor or Actress categories, according to Variety.

“The Television Academy celebrates inclusiveness, and as we discussed with Asia, there is no gender requirement for the various performer categories,” the Television Academy told Variety. “Asia is free to choose the category they wish to enter.”

In 2011, the Recording Academy, which sponsors the Grammy Awards, scrapped more than 30 nominating categories, including best Native American album and best spoken-word children’s record.

This year’s Grammys featured its first-ever male and transgender “trophy girls” tasked with presenting music’s top honors onstage.

MTV’s ceremony will also rename its Best Fight category to Best Fight the System, the AP reports, as a nod to social activism.

 

 

 

source:http://www.breitbart.com/big-hollywood/2017/04/07/mtv-movie-awards-dumps-gender-specific-categories/