Aletho News


Nebraska Cops Receive no Jail Time for Stealing Memory Card, Despite Big Talk from County Attorney

By Carlos Miller | Photography Is Not A Crime | August 30, 2014

Omaha cops

A Nebraska cop who chased a man into his home after he had video recorded cops arresting his brother, confiscating his camera and later admitting to throwing the memory card away, received a year of probation this week after his charge was reduced from a felony to misdemeanors, proving once again that the system will always side with the cops, even in cases like this one where the prosecutor talks a big game.

James Kinsella was part of a mob of cops from the Omaha Police Department who chased a man inside his home without a warrant last year after the man attempted to video record them abusing his brother, a scene that was captured on a camera by a neighbor from an upstairs window in a shocking video that went viral.

But what took place inside the home was even more egregious, according to Douglas County Attorney Don Kleine, who called a press conference last year to announce he was charging Kinsella with felony tampering with evidence – a rare move by any prosecutor when it comes to cop deleting footage.

However, Klein later reduced the charge to two misdemeanor counts of obstruction of government operations because the cop claimed there was no video on the memory card.

Klein also dropped charges against another cop he had charged last year, Aaron Von Behren, a sergeant who was facing two misdemeanors, accessory to a felony and obstruction of government operations, for orchestrating the coverup by ordering his officers to keep hush about the disposal of the memory card – which they claim contained no video evidence anyway.

Uh huh.

Why would he knowingly commit a felony if there was nothing incriminating on the phone that he and other officers illegally searched through?

This is how his attorney explained it, according to the Omaha World-Herald.

“He gets there, and he finds a melee,” Fabian said. “He does what he’s directed to do: secure a residence. He retrieves the cellphone. He determines that there is no video on the phone.

“Because he’s angry, he decides, ‘I’m going to take this memory card and stick it in my pocket.’ It was done out of frustration,” Fabian said. “He made a comment, ‘He won’t be using this any more.’ ”

Fabian said his client believed in public service and had received a chief’s commendation for corralling a suicidal person before he could jump off of an Interstate 480 bridge. He also volunteered with the Special Olympics.

“My point is this: The events that were involved in this incident were regrettable,” Fabian said. “But my client didn’t strike anyone, didn’t kick anyone, didn’t abuse anyone, didn’t threaten anyone.”

And how did Von Behren emerge without a conviction?

Kleine said, prosecutors had a few obstacles in prosecuting Von Behren. Much of the information gleaned about Von Behren’s instructions came from an Omaha police internal affairs investigation, Kleine said.

By law, authorities cannot use any admissions or statements made in such internal investigations because officers don’t have the right to refuse interviews with their supervisors. That prevented prosecutors from using officers’ statements to internal affairs about Von Behren’s purported instructions.

And because Kinsella no longer faced a felony, Von Behren could no longer be considered an accessory to a felony.

Kinsella and Von Behren were fired for the incident along with two other officers, one who was rehired earlier this year.

Meanwhile, a civl lawsuit against the department and the officers is still pending.

August 31, 2014 Posted by | Civil Liberties | , | Leave a comment

Five point action plan for political advocacy in the UK on Palestine around reconstruction

Palestine: a journal of everyday occupation | August 31, 2014

Below are five points that campaigning organisations and individuals should be using in all discussions and correspondence with their political representatives. This is UK-specific as DFID wants to play the leading role in co-ordinating the reconstruction of Gaza. The five point action plan relies on international law and the UK’s responsibility as a signatory of the IV Geneva Convention.

Next month there is a donors’ conference in Cairo and it is vital that British voters start pressuring their MPs as soon as possible. An online petition issued by a coalition of civil society organisations (such as Oxfam, War on Want, PSC, JFJFP, etc) which individuals can sign is also a powerful tool to exert political pressure.

I would like to ask all civil society organisations and individuals in the UK to read this, share it and help implement it as a campaign. There is a general election in the UK next year, let’s work now to make Palestine a key issue for MPs, especially the issue of the Blockade.

  1. UK taxpayers should not subsidise Israel’s destruction of Gaza. Taxpayers financially support the work of DFID in assisting in the rebuilding efforts, but Israel should reimburse all of DFID’s costs. DFID should send an itemised assessment, or the UK government should send a similar bill, to the Israeli government. The bill should clearly state that the UK government is issuing it as part of third-state responsibility to ensure accountability and prevent impunity for international law violations. The UK is obligated as a third state party, party to IV Geneva Convention, to demand from the violator to make reparations, compensation.
  2. Taxpayers should demand that the UK government makes public the complete list of all UK-funded projects destroyed and/or damaged and/or setback and/or delayed by Israel’s war on Gaza. This should also apply to the West Bank and East Jerusalem demolitions. This includes DFID funding of INGO’s who partner with local NGO’s, not just direct DFID funding.
  3. Should Israel refuse to pay for the damages or for DFID’s reconstruction projects, then the UK and EU should impose a Gaza reconstruction tax on all Israeli imports. The fees collected will go towards a Gaza Reconstruction Fund.
  4. DFID projects must be aimed at empowering the local Palestinian economy (local means all of Palestine). Israel should not profit from its violations, ie, its markets should be excluded from or be of last resort for providing materials for reconstruction projects.
  5. Reconstruction should not be done by accommodating the Blockade or any other illegal action. (That means continuing to use Israeli controlled crossings at the restricted rates of the Blockade which simply perpetuates the Blockade.) Ending the blockade means ending Israeli control of all imports. The current paradigm needs to be changed through international political action: Gaza needs an autonomous crossing not controlled by Israel, for example, an international seaport. The EU proposal for a Cyprus corridor is a good first start and should be supported by the UK and EU.

August 31, 2014 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Illegal Occupation, Solidarity and Activism, Timeless or most popular | , , , | 1 Comment

UK’s MI6 aided torture of Nepal rebels: Report

Press TV – August 31, 2014

British secret service MI6 has been accused of aiding Nepal’s authorities in the torture of Maoist rebels during the South Asian country’s civil war.

The accusations were made by author Thomas Bell in his new book Kathmandu citing sources in the Nepalese security establishment on Britain’s involvement in the country’s decade long civil war.

Bell said British authorities funded a four-year intelligence operation in Nepal in 2002 that financed safe houses and provided training in surveillance and counter-insurgency tactics to Nepal’s army and spy agency, the National Investigation Department (NID).

The British agency “also sent a small number of British officers to Nepal, around four or five — some tied to the embassy, others operating separately,” said Bell.

According to Bell, the British officers trained Nepalese authorities on how to place bugs, penetrate rebel networks and groom informers.

The sources said “British aid greatly strengthened” NID’s performance, which led to dozens of arrests, of which a number “were tortured and disappeared.”
One of the sources, a Nepalese general with close knowledge of the operation, argued that there was no doubt that British authorities realized that some of those detained would be tortured and killed.

Furthermore, Bell said that a senior Western official told him that the operation was cleared by Britain’s Foreign Office.

Bell said the findings revealed that “while calling for an end to abuses… the British were secretly giving very significant help in arresting targets whom they knew were very likely to be tortured.”

Tejshree Thapa, senior researcher at the Asia division of Human Rights Watch, commented on the book’s findings saying, “Nepal’s army was known by 2002 to be an abusive force, responsible for… summary executions, torture, custodial detentions,” adding, “To support such an army is tantamount to entrenching and encouraging abuse and impunity.”

Nepal’s civil war between the government and Maoists lasted between 1996 and 2006 and left more than 16,000 people killed.

August 31, 2014 Posted by | Subjugation - Torture, War Crimes | , , | 1 Comment

Jim Page: I’d Rather Be Dancing (Rachel Corrie’s Song)

The words of Jim Page’s song “I’d rather be dancing” are based on the letters Rachel Corrie wrote home to her parents before the Israeli army crushed her to death in Gaza on 16 March 2003. She was murdered, crushed by an Israeli army bulldozer, when attempting to prevent the demolition of a house in Rafah, Gaza, owned by a Palestinian doctor and his family. Rachel was 23-years-old. See


you know I was always the one
I could never stand idly by
and watch while the bullies beat up on the weaker ones
I had to do something to try
and I never gave up on people
that we could be better somehow
morality’s compass, you gave it to me
I still follow it now

well, I couldn’t stop thinking about it
I couldn’t get it out of my mind
the pictures, the stories, the plight of the people
in occupied Palestine
how my government makes me complicit
with the political aid that they send
so I packed up my bags and I headed to Rafa
to work with the ISM

and I’d rather be dancing, dancing and falling in love
but if I just can just watch from a distance then what am I made of

mama these people are so good to me
they treat me like one of their own
they feed me and see to my needs
and let me sleep in their home
papa their lives are so hard
the gun shots night
the road blocks, the strip searches, the humiliations
papa it just isn’t right

I can feel my privilege around me
it’s there in my American face
I could wave my passport around like a flag
and I would be safe in this place
for these child soldiers of Israel
they look like the boys back home
and if it wasn’t for American money
they’d have to leave these people alone

and I’d rather be dancing, dancing to Pat Benatar
but somebody has to do somethin’ about it and here we are

the tractors are coming today
they’re like tanks with bulldozer blades
the name on the side says Caterpillar
that means they’re American made
well, I am American too
and I’ll be where everybody can see
so if they want to run over these houses today
they’re gonna have to run over me

it’s dangerous takin’ a stand
but it’s dangerous running away
sometimes you have to face up to the danger
there is just no other way
for there are such beautiful dreams
I have seen the eyes of a child
and if I can just make one little difference
then I think my life is worth while

and I’d rather be dancing, but instead I’m saying goodbye
but we’ll meet again when it’s over, don’t cry

and I’d rather be dancing, and surely we’d all rather be
and one day we’ll dance in a world that’s peaceful and free


August 31, 2014 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Solidarity and Activism, Timeless or most popular, Video, Zionism | , , , | Leave a comment