Sunday, 27 September 2009

Justice For Gary McKinnon?

Well, yesterday (26th September, 2009) saw UK based “Tribune magazine” who describe themselves as, “A thorn in the side of all governments, constructively to Labour, unforgiving to Conservatives” posted about the plight of Mckinnon in an article called, “Securing Labour's future.”

The opening paragraph stated:



Ann Black identifies the priorities for Labour in the time remaining before the general election.

"As Labour gathers for its conference in Brighton, penned behind the ring of steel, the omens are mixed. The recession is easing, but the summer saw errors over Gurkhas' settlement rights, compensation for wounded soldiers and the lingering MPs' expenses scandal. Blaming the SNP for freeing Abdelbaset Ali al-Megrahi, the man convicted of the Lockerbie bombing, will not wash. Instead Labour hits out at soft targets in agreeing to deport Gary McKinnon, the hacker with Asperger's syndrome, to face rough justice in the United States for accessing military computers in search of evidence of UFOs.”

Source: Tribune Magazine



It seems as if the general consensus has gradually swung in favour of McKinnon, ComputerWeekly.com posted under their, “Legislation and Regulation” section on 14th July, 2009 that:


US allegations against UFO hacker Gary McKinnon were 'over baked'

US allegations about the severity of Pentagon hacker Gary McKinnon's crimes were trumped up, a court heard today.

Edward Fitzgerald QC, McKinnon's barrister, argued that the Director of Public Prosecutions decided wrongly in February not to prosecute the hacker in the UK and so allow his extradition to face charges in the US instead. Fitzgerald told the court that US allegations that McKinnon was guilty of "the worst crimes of the century" were over baked. He submitted a file said to contain DPP evidence that demonstrated how the US did not have evidence to support these allegations. The actual US indictments - as apposed to allegations - were for computer fraud and damages. These charges were comparable with those listed under the British Computer Misuse act, the court heard.

McKinnon, who is accused of causing £475,000 worth of damage to computers by hacking into computer systems belonging to the Pentagon, Nasa and the US military from his home in North London, claims that under human rights law he has a right to be tried in the UK. McKinnon hacked military systems in the search for suppressed evidence of UFOs. He found little evidence of other-world natives or technology, except for a spreadsheet that listed "non-terrestrial officers, ships' names and goods movements", and a picture of what he said was a UFO with a perfectly smooth surface.

Source: ComputerWeekly



Back on the 10th September we were told that the presentation made on behalf of McKinnon by several MPs was apparently dismissed:



McKinnon plea falls on deaf ears

LABOUR, CONSERVATIVE and Lib Dem MPs who argued the case for protecting Palmers Green hacker Gary McKinnon from extradition in the US have drawn a blank. Michael Meacher, for Labour, former shadow Home Secretary David Davis and Liberal Democrat MP Chris Huhne had a 30-minute audience with Home Secretary Alan Johnson yesterday, but were disappointed by his response. The senior cross-party trio relayed arguments made by leading human rights lawyers concerned for the welfare of the 43-year-old Asperger's sufferer if the planned extradition took place.

Mr McKinnon admits cracking NASA codes, but says he was looking for evidence of UFOs, while the US says he is guilty of the biggest military computer hack and could send him to prison for up to 60 years if he is found guilty. The MPs will now take their case to the new US ambassador Louis Susman, who recently backed a sponsored walk for an autism charity.

Mr Meacher, who has criticised the UK's Extradition Act as being unfairly weighted in favour of the US, said:

“Alan Johnson made clear that in his view, after a string of court decisions at all levels over the last seven years, it would be very difficult for him to [intervene]…..It was also quite clear that Alan Johnson was concerned about the precedent that would be set in regard to other current cases, notably that of the alleged terrorist Abu Hamza…..We pointed out that this showed how poorly drafted the Extradition Act 2003 had been when not only was it gave rights to the US that were denied to the UK, but it bizarrely applied the same rules to a misguided but innocuous young man as to a serious alleged terrorist. A more common-sense and proportional approach was needed.”

Mr McKinnon is now waiting to hear if his legal battle will be taken on by the new Supreme Court, which replaces the House of Lords as the highest appeal court in the UK and starts to hear cases from October 1.

Source: Enfield Independent



Putting political agendas aside and again with ComputerWeekly.com who posted the following on September 22nd (2009) in their, “Risk Management” section:



Expert challenges UFO hacker's $700k bill

The US inflated the $700,000 bill for damages it slapped on UFO hacker Gary McKinnon by stuffing it with costs incurred for patching the gaping holes the hacker had exposed in its computer security, according to a document filed with the Supreme Court. The US had not taken reasonable steps to protect its security and now expects McKinnon to pick up the bill, said an expert witness statement made in McKinnon's ongoing appeal against a US extradition order.

Peter Sommer, professor of security at the London School of Economics, said damage assessments of computer security breaches should consider, "whether the victims have taken reasonable steps to limit the damage."

McKinnon had used Remotely Anywhere, a software tool, to hack US military computers in search of UFO secrets. The 42-year-old faces extradition after being accused of hacking into 97 US government computers causing $700,000 of damage.

But Sommer said, "Every intrusion detection system I have come across would flag up the installation of a remote control program like Remotely Anywhere……Any firewall also ought to block the 'ports' [internet access points on a computer] used by Remotely Anywhere. On this basis, the costs claimed for are features that should have been there in the first place."

Sommer, who once advised insurers underwriting the risks of computer damage, said hackers could not be held accountable for the, "consequential loss" resulting from their intrusion into systems unprotected by "preventative measures for reasonably foreseeable hazards ….. Insurers will not insure computers or computer-dependent businesses in the absence of reasonable levels of protection and means of recovery.”

But security experts in the US said McKinnon should be liable for the full $700,000 of security checks performed in his wake.

Professor Eugene Spafford, founder of the Center for Education and Research in Information Assurance and Security at Indiana's Purdue University, said the victim of a cybercrime should not take the blame. If someone broke a door to rob a store, he said, it was usual to charge them the cost of the door. Anthony Reyes, a former cybercrime detective who helped develop the US Cyber Counter Terrorism Investigations Program, said, " Just because security is weak, it doesn't give you a red flag to go into a computer system and start browsing around ."

Source: Computer Weekly



Apart from the discrepancies between the dollar amounts stated to date regarding the alleged damage McKinnon caused (apparently depending entirely on which webpage the information was posted) this is the first time I've seen the allegation that the, “Damages” were nothing of the sort but instead are down to the cost of plugging the holes in the amateurish system setup that McKinnon exposed. While I agree that just because the security is weak it doesn't give you free licence to breech the network at will, but when someone exposes the system weaknesses to then try and also pass the cost of fixing these flaws onto them (which are there due to your own incompetence) doesn't seem right, does it?

And if the damages being pursued are just for locating and correcting his edits then it's still ridiculously overpriced at $700,000. Plus, if McKinnon is to be believed and this security flaw was indeed directly due to no more than the machines not having been assigned a password and so were still operating on the default settings, then I would tend to agree with McKinnon in that this estimate is massively inflated for the sole reason of obtaining extradition to the US, which in turn means I also share McKinnon's apprehension in that this is quite a risk to take if the US are just planning to extradite him for a lenient sentence.

I appreciate that the only reason I'm even mentioning McKinnon is due to what he claimed he found while browsing through the -less than- secure system and for what it's worth I don't believe McKinnon saw what he thinks he did, I wouldn't go as far as to say McKinnon is lying but I feel he is at best mistaken. However, that doesn't and shouldn't in any way affect the bigger picture which is surely that extradition while always accepted as a possibility is one I feel was never really expected to go as far as it has and especially so when several high-profile UK hackers have been tried for similar offences here in the UK (i.e. where the people were located when the cyber-crimes were committed).

I should also point out that I believe, “Team McKinnon” should have long since dropped the UFO angle, if absolutely necessary then perhaps play on McKinnon's (alleged) naivety in searching for answers to one of the most profound questions we as a species have ever asked, but to continue pushing the fact that McKinnon actually found evidence of this at the exact some moment being ‘caught in the act' is a very difficult coincidence to accept. Basically they are saying that after at least 96 fruitless attempts at discovering ANY information and many, many hours spent searching for it, Mckinnon finally stumbles upon the evidence he has been relentlessly questing for at the exact same moment that someone happens to notice he is online and has unauthorised access, the EXACT same time after so long undetected (in the act)?

And in what appears to be something of a contradiction McKinnon when appearing on the Hackers' Panel at the Infosecurity Europe 2006 conference (April 27th, London) and upon being asked how his exploits were first discovered, answered that he had miscalculated the timezone. He further claimed that this led to him actually using remote desktop software to operate a Windows computer while its user was sitting in front of it.

But yet also in 2006 when specifically asked, “What did you find inside Nasa?” McKinnon told the BBC's, “Click” programme:



“I got one picture out of the folder, and bearing in mind this is a 56k dial-up, so a very slow internet connection, in dial-up days, using the remote control programme I turned the colour down to 4bit colour and the screen resolution really, really low, and even then the picture was still juddering as it came onto the screen…..But what came on to the screen was amazing. It was a culmination of all my efforts. It was a picture of something that definitely wasn't man-made…..It was above the Earth's hemisphere. It kind of looked like a satellite. It was cigar-shaped and had geodesic domes above, below, to the left, the right and both ends of it, and although it was a low-resolution picture it was very close up…..This thing was hanging in space, the earth's hemisphere visible below it, and no rivets, no seams, none of the stuff associated with normal man-made manufacturing.”

Source: Click (BBC)



So from what information is available something doesn't seem to jibe as how was McKinnon able to locate and commence the download of an image on a PC on which a user was logged in and actually using at the time? Of course this is purely my unlearned opinion and either way I suppose this is something of a minor discrepancy and pales into insignificance when compared to the charges and the possible repercussions faced should extradition go ahead and McKinnon faces trial in the US.

And let's not forget that searching for UFOs/free energy etc. may be what Gary is claiming as the reason behind his foray into cybercrime it would be negligent to omit the statement he left on the system while hacking under the guise of, “Solo”:


“U.S. foreign policy is akin to government-sponsored terrorism these days ... It was not a mistake that there was a huge security stand-down on September 11 last year... I am SOLO. I will continue to disrupt at the highest levels.”


Remember this is post 9/11 and personally speaking this is not only in very bad taste but for all intents and purposes it certainly sounds like the words of a terrorist, cyber or otherwise.

Anyway that's more than enough rambling from me so I‘ll wind up by saying:

Support Gary McKinnon!!

But perhaps just not for the reasons you might have thought.....





A few earlier Blog posts:

(29 Aug 2008) Gary McKinnon Loses European Appeal
(31 Aug 2008) Protest For Gary McKinnon , Home Office (London) Tuesday
(31 Jan 2009) Boris Johnson criticised for defending UFO Hacker
(06 Apr 2007) Gary McKinnon Faces US Extradition On Hacking Charges, (+ Video)

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Sunday, 20 September 2009

The UFO Files - The inside story of real-life sightings

David Clarke, who has helped The National Archives during the UFO file releases of the UK UFO related documents has recently published a book which extensively details certain reports collected over the years as well as the nature and trends of their content.

The official blurb from The National Archives is as follows:



The UFO Files by David Clarke
The inside story of real-life sightings

The UFO Files reveals extraordinary reports by ordinary people along with details of official interest and investigations stretching back to before the First World War – for although the terms UFO and Flying Saucer were not coined until the middle of the twentieth century, people have long seen things in the sky that they could not explain.

David Clarke uncovers an array of startling stories from possible UFO reports hidden among Met Office investigations of aerial phenomena in the 1920s to the conclusions of Project Condign, the hush-hush British Intelligence UFO study completed in 2000. As well as covering Roswell and Britain’s own Rendlesham Forest mystery, Clarke raids the records for dramatic stories of abductions and close encounters, ghost aircraft and crop circles, and UFO reports by civilian aircrew and military personnel. Dramatic witness statements and interviews – many undertaken by the author himself – combine with rarely seen photographs, drawings and newly available documents to offer a unique guide to one of our most intriguing mysteries.

Contents: Introduction; 1. Strange Lights in the Skies; 2. The Flying Saucer Age; 3. Cold War UFOs; 4. Close Encounters; 5. Crop Circles and Alien Abductions; 6. Turn of the Century UFOs; Afterword.



And to herald this release The National Archives currently has an edited extract from Chapter 2 of The UFO Files by David Clarke (published September 2009) available for free download as a PDF document from the main UFO page.



The following is an excerpt from Dave's Blog last month just after the most recent (4th) release of documents:

“News of the latest UFO files released by The National Archives has travelled around the world.

I spent most of yesterday dealing with calls from the national and international media and shuttling between BBC, ITN, Channel 4 and Sky News studios in London to comment on the significance of the new files. Public interest in the contents has been unprecedented and once again, most of the UK media have treated the topic in a serious and mature way. Yesterday morning I was able to explain the historical importance of the files to Evan Davies on BBC Radio 4's prestigious Today programme, which in itself is a measure of the impact the release has had.

The Rendlesham forest incident was discussed and a short interview with one of the key witnesses, John Burroughs, was used. This in itself was significant because Burroughs said he was unconvinced the incident was of an extraterrestrial nature - he suspects it was some kind of military experiment.

For once it was good to hear an alternative viewpoint expressed coherently and lucidly, rather than the usual tired debates about whether you "believe" or "don't believe" (who cares?). Coverage was extensive in the national and regional press, with leading articles in The Guardian, Daily Telegraph, Daily Mail, Independent and Scotsman. BBC News Online ran a lead article and a more in-depth look at the connection between UFO sightings and science fiction in popular culture.”



Details of how to obtain Dave's new book is available at The National Archives online book store (here).

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(UK) RAF suspected aliens of "tourist" visits to Earth

Britain's X Files: RAF suspected aliens of "tourist" visits to Earth

A new book reveals details about UFO sightings over British skies after author David Clarke studied declassified Ministry of Defence records. The book gives new insights into an incident known as "Britain's Roswell" as well as the belief in UFOs by high ranking defence officials.

Project Condign

Little green men are all in the mind - Documents in the files reveal that there were high level defence officials in the 1990s who believed UFOs could be spacecraft piloted by extraterrestrials who could even be conducting "tourist" visits to earth.

In 1993, an RAF Wing Commander lobbied MoD officials about the need for a properly funded study, he told them: "The national security implications (of UFOs) are considerable. We have many reports of strange objects in the skies and have never investigated them….If the sightings are of devices not of earth then their purpose needs to be established as a matter of priority. There has been no apparently hostile intent and other possibilities are: (1) military reconnaissance, (2) scientific, (3) tourism…..If the reports are taken at face value then devices exist that do not use conventional reaction propulsion systems, they have a very wide range of speeds and are stealthy. I suggest we could use the technology, if it exists."

The internal debate in the MoD came to a head in 1995, when documents were made public revealing that UFO reports were routinely copied to specialist "Defence Intelligence" branches.

An exasperated intelligence office wrote to the UFO Desk: "I see no reason for continuing to deny that (Defence Intelligence) has an interest in UFOs…..However, if the association is formally made public, then the MoD will no doubt be pressurised to state what the intelligence role/interest is….This could lead to disbelief and embarrassment since few people are likely to believe the truth that lack of funds and higher priorities have prevented any study of the thousands of reports received."

Dr Clarke said: "Some of these officials, like the Wing Commander, obviously believed in some pretty weird stuff. He doesn't seem to have any evidence for his theories, but seems to have just been watching the X Files, like everyone else at the time….These are senior officials and yet they believe some pretty bizarre things."

An inquiry, Project Condign, was eventually launched in 1996, apparently without the knowledge of then defence secretary Michael Portillo. It was completed in 2000 under Geoff Hoon. The report found: "That (UFOs) exist is indisputable. Credited with the ability to hover, land, take-off, accelerate to exceptional velocities and vanish, they can reportedly alter their direction of flight suddenly and clearly can exhibit aerodynamic characteristics well beyond those of any known aircraft of missile – either manned or unmanned."

It went on that, although they existed, UFOs presented no threat to defence. It found that many sightings of UFOs were in fact "plasmas" of gas caused by charges of electricity in the atmosphere. The author even suggested that exposure to plasmas could cause responses in parts of the brain that lead to elaborate hallucinations that might be interpreted as supernatural experiences of encounters with aliens. The inquiry examined seven "near misses" involving RAF aircraft and "unexplained aerial phenomenon".

The unnamed author concluded that "the possibility exists that a fatal accident might have occurred in the past" as a result of aircrew avoiding a UFO. The study recommended that pilots should make "no attempt to out manoeuvre a UAP during interception".

"Britain's Roswell"

This occurred in the early hours of December 26, 1980, in Rendlesham Forest, Suffolk, near two military bases used by the US Air Force: RAF Woodbridge and RAF Bentwaters.

US security personnel from the bases ventured into the forest after they spotted unusual lights that they feared could be a crashed aircraft. They reported seeing a strange glowing object which moved off through the forest. Dr Clarke said the files from the National Archives, at Kew, showed the authorities had missed the opportunity to fully investigate the incident. "There was clearly a missed opportunity to investigate properly here" he added.

Earlier this month, Peter Turtill, 66, from Ipswich, claimed that he had caused the scare by burning a lorry full of fertiliser. However, his claim has been met with scorn by some ufologists. Dr Clarke added: "There have been other people claiming responsibility for whatever happened in Rendlesham Forest. There is so much ambiguity about the incident and that is because there was not enough done at the time to look into it."

Source: Telegraph.co.uk


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Wednesday, 2 September 2009

James Carrion: A Blog Of Disrepute?

I wrote a few days ago about a Blog post that Mufon's international director, James Carrion made at his new Blog, a Blog that only seen its first post a few days ago (17th August 2009) and it's worth noting the first paragraph of his first Blog post as it states that:



“My name is James Carrion and I am the International Director of the Mutual UFO Network (MUFON). MUFON is a scientific research nonprofit organization that studies UFOs for the benefit of humanity through investigation, research and public education.”

(Source)



But back to my earlier Blog post and the original post by Carrion that referenced the (2007 California) Drones but more specifically it referenced the Open Minds Forum (OMF) and Carrion implied that a couple of administrators may not be all they seem, he wrote:

When I joined the boards, I was treated by the moderators and anonymous membership in the same way I was treated by the Dive Company message board members, in a negative way using disinformation methods of deflection and intimidation. When I pressed my case, I was then kicked off the boards. Now the interesting thing about Open Minds is that the two principles (Admin and Ivo5000) who allegedly co-own it and with whom I have had some interesting email exchanges don't seem to be real people themselves. I could be wrong here but I challenge anyone to investigate this for themself and if you can surface a real resume for either partner, then I will retract my statement.

(Source)



Carrion has since clarified that by, “Real people” he doesn't mean literally flesh & blood people as he accepts they are and I believe that he also accepts that he has the real names (as supplied) of the two people in question, his main gripe is the refusal of the two people in question to publish or supply him with verifiable (in the real-world) references/contacts/personal history.

It really is that simple, or is it…..

It seems to me that while establishing ‘non-repudiation' is the premise of Carrion's most recent foray there is surely a little more to it than that, and without being privy to any agenda (should one exist) I can only surmise it's due to the earlier altercation at OMF (that Carrion was referencing in his original Blog post that questioned the backgrounds of the two OMF administrators), or more precisely the less than respectful way his requests for information on the Drones and the opportunity to work with Mufon were greeted. As you can probably tell I still believe (whether this is the underlying reason for recent events or not) that Carrion had/has a legitimate argument regarding the way he was treated previously (18 months ago) when he first ventured onto the OMF boards.

Anyway, an OM member (Yex) started a thread at OMF, posted the statement (regarding the two admininstrators) by Carrion and as one would expect the comments came thick & fast with none of them being particularly favourable or reticent in voicing their opinions of Carrion and by direct association Mufon. Then Carrion posted a comment reiterating his request and there quickly followed a pissing contest between Carrion and the OMF staff in which all parties caught a little splash-back and it seems somewhat inevitably that the only hatchet buried was yet again –up to the hilt- in the others back.

And the end result? (Short version!!)

It would appear that since no verifiable authentication (as to the identities of the two administrators in question) was negotiated or offered to Carrion then he as a result he will not be retracting his original statement which questioned the validity of the identities previously presented of the two OMF administrators.

Also, while this drama was unfolding at OMF, Carrion was also offering a commentary (of sorts) on his Blog which referenced/named members at OMF as well as quoting quite extensively from the ongoing discussion there and in fact it's fair to say that several of the Blog posts were an extension of the OMF discourse as Carrion elaborated on what had transpired.

First mention of it was the, ‘Internet Matrix' post which started the ball rolling and Carrion posted to his Blog on August 20th, then this was in turn re-posted to OMF on the 26th August and Carrion posted there on the same day, then during the next two days while Carrion was posting at OMF he made two Blog posts on the 27th August and another three on the 28th August (2009). After stating his case in, “The Internet Matrix” he then posted large chunks of the discussion (ftrom OMF) in, “Wolves in Sheep's Clothing” then to further prove his point and after claiming, “Transparency was the best policy” (at OMF) he published his full CV on his Blog in a post titled, “Am I a Real Person ?

Carrion also posted his personal history at OMF along with contact details of people who could further confirm what he was stating was fact (referees for his references as it were).

The following information was included:



1983-1987 Signals Intelligence Analyst, United States Army

How to verify my service:

Official military records are stored at the National Personnel Records Center in St. Louis, Missouri. Information about U.S. service personnel is available to the public under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA). Getting the information is not difficult. To make a request, all you have to do is download a form and mail or fax it in - http://www.archives.gov/st-louis/military-personnel/standard-form-180.html Include a cover letter requesting the records under FOIA, and ask for all available releasable information. If the person was never in the military, you'll receive a reply telling you that the center has no record of him or her.

You will need the following information:

Full name: James Patrick Carrion

Branch of Service: US Army

Dates of Service: October 1983 – July 1987

DOB: October 22, 1965 (use in lieu of social security number)



(The ONLY reason I mention this is due to what Carrion himself posted later, details below). Then on the next day Carrion made a Blog post titled, “Into the Lions Den" which he stated that his lucky readers had a rare chance to see, “Disinformation in action” at OMF and also stated that before you headed on over you really should educate yourself, writing:



“I suggest you first print out this article that lists the common ploys used by those practicing disinformation: http://www.whale.to/m/disin.html#Twenty-Five_Rules_of_Disinformation__ and compare it to the posts.”



Which while is an interesting read does seem a little too all-encompassing as several of the ‘ploys' can quite suitably be applied to situations and/or discussions where it is patently obvious that there is nothing untoward going on, for example have a look at the following ‘ploys' as listed at Carrion's' link:



5. Sidetrack opponents with name calling and ridicule. This is also known as the primary 'attack the messenger' ploy, though other methods qualify as variants of that approach. Associate opponents with unpopular titles such as 'kooks', 'right-wing', 'liberal', 'left-wing', 'terrorists', 'conspiracy buffs', 'radicals', 'militia', 'racists', 'religious fanatics', 'sexual deviates', and so forth. This makes others shrink from support out of fear of gaining the same label, and you avoid dealing with issues.

7. Question motives. Twist or amplify any fact which could be taken to imply that the opponent operates out of a hidden personal agenda or other bias. This avoids discussing issues and forces the accuser on the defensive.

8. Invoke authority. Claim for yourself or associate yourself with authority and present your argument with enough 'jargon' and 'minutia' to illustrate you are 'one who knows', and simply say it isn't so without discussing issues or demonstrating concretely why or citing sources.



Which to be fair, the above, is how it may outwardly appear and indeed be construed when Carrion singled out two administrators of an internet forum (where granted, he was openly treated with hostility almost two years ago) before proceeding to highlight the fact that as their personal backgrounds are not known to him and as they weren't provided at his request it qualifies them as “not real people”. That sounds a little like the (disinformation) ploy of questioning motives, and as for invoking authority, well surely just the title of International Director of Mufon is enough to do that when dealing with people from the UFO community?

This isn't saying that the above is what Carrion's actual intent was but rather that the article linked to seems far too broad, generalising and a little unfair when presented in the context within Carrion framed it, and once recognised and considered as such then somewhat ironically Carrion's own words & actions could equally be viewed as, well for want of a better term, “disinformation”.



Perhaps this was why it was later condensed into just eight simple ‘traits' about which the author (Sweeny) wrote -as an addendum- at the foot of the original article:

Note: There are other ways to attack truth, but these listed are the most common, and others are likely derivatives of these. In the end, you can usually spot the professional disinfo players by one or more of seven (now 8) distinct traits:



And trait #6 (of 8) states:

6) Artificial Emotions. An odd kind of 'artificial' emotionalism and an unusually thick skin -- an ability to persevere and persist even in the face of overwhelming criticism and unacceptance. This likely stems from intelligence community training that , no matter how condemning the evidence, deny everything, and never become emotionally involved or reactive.

(Source)



And the following is an –edited- excerpt from Carrion's Blog post, “Wolves In Sheeps Clothing” which he starts by saying that he wishes to analyze messages posted at OMF as he intends to point out disinformation tactics then repeatedly states that the important aspect (as he demonstrated) was not to allow yourself to become side-tracked:

Staying on message with my next post:

[snip]

See the pattern? Righteous indignation followed by questioning my credibility and motives to put the focus off of the question and back on to the questioner. Now the only way to get past this dance is to stay on message. If you allow yourself to be intimidated or cajoled into dropping your question, then the disinformation tactics have worked.

[snip]

I am including all of these responses to drive home how important it is to keep stating and restating your question in the face of intimidation and deflection. If you stray even in the least bit, then the disinformation tactics will win out.”



Now again compare & contrast this with #6 of the dreaded disinformation traits:

an ability to persevere and persist even in the face of overwhelming criticism and unacceptance. This likely stems from intelligence community training that , no matter how condemning the evidence, deny everything, and never become emotionally involved or reactive.”



The OMF thread was originally locked mid-discussion (August 27th) then briefly reopened only to be locked again a day later (August 28th) with the following statement:



Since the burden of proof for his frivolous accusations is on Mr. Carrion and he refuses to provide any, no progress has been made for 11 pages.

This discussion is going nowhere.

Thread closed permanently.

(Source)



A couple of observations if I may…..

I didn't really consider writing anything about this episode for several reasons with the main one being there's no mention of a UFO, in fact I had decided not to write anything about until I saw a post (31st August) over at Frank Warren's Blog called, “A Rebuttal To James Carrion's Article On Stan Romanek” and upon reading it I discovered that one of Mufon's investigators (Chuck Zucowski) had expressed his displeasure regarding another matter which Carrion had posted about on his fledgling Blog (which only celebrated its two week birthday yesterday!! )



Chuck writes:

“I'm a MUFON Field Investigator as well as a MUFON STAR Investigator, but I'm also an Independent UFO Investigator which includes “non” MUFON investigations. For various reasons, some people prefer not to use MUFON, so people like me are available for them and their needs. (Especially after James's last blog ”feud” with the “Open Minds Forum”.) I guess I'll be getting pretty busy.”

[snip]

Now let's discuss the “controversial” document, the “alleged Air Force memo” which was found in Stan's mailbox and you acquired without the consent of Stan Romanek. You even stated this yourself, “I subsequently located a copy of the memo from a third party source.” A third party? A third Party? Geeesh… Can you say “Smoking Man”? Again?

James! What the hell! You posted this document through your blog without Stan's consent? Can you say, “MUFON Board of Directors Meeting?”

(Source)



Now I feel obliged to point out that I actually agree with Carrion's opinion on Romanek and perhaps more importantly is that Carrion was perfectly justified in posting what Chuck has took issue with, my reasoning for this is it was an (alleged) Air Force document and as such was a document that Romanek has no claim to, but my intention is to highlight the medium that Chuck used to voice his opinion, i.e. –originally- his (public) internet Blog. Live by the sword, die by the sword? There does seem to be more dissenters of late as these aren't isolated cases but perhaps it's just more publicised now or as Mufon is relatively transparent in this respect and when coupled with the thriving internet culture of today then perhaps public disagreements are inevitable?

“Like gravity, Karma is so basic we often don't even notice it”



Anyway, in my humble, and admittedly probably uninformed opinion, Carrions recent excursion (read: ‘incursion') to OMF was motivated by the need to back up an unfounded allegation regarding the identities of two owners of an internet-forum who have done nothing wrong as they have never claimed or alleged anything that would require their CV's being posted, and certainly didn't expect the International Director of Mufon to publicly cast aspersions regarding their being ‘real' people with no provocation.

However, I believe their was an underlying reason but before I elaborate a brief history is required.

After the Drone hoax first broke back in May 2007 it cut a definite line through all of the online communities that discussed the Drones in any depth and inevitably divisions occurred. OMF was no exception and had recently introduced the idea of fielding, “Open Minds Research Team(s)” (OMRT) and one of these teams that were introduced was the Drone OMRT, but as practically all of the other members at OMF (yep, Carrion was wrong about OMF being pro-Drone) believed it was a hoax so a lot of the pro-evidence posted was attacked, but I hasten to add as the Drone OMRT consisted of Drone-believers subsequently any discussion/s were heavily stacked in favour of the Drones being a real-world phenomenon. Anyway eventually the Drone OMRT asserted ownership and sulked off with their football tightly tucked under their arm and so the Drone-Research-Team (DRT) was born in late 2007, a collective conceived of conflict, born of indignation, nurtured with indifference and positively bubbling over with self-satisfaction & elitism. I say this due solely to the fact that as well as not allowing people to join their forum who didn’t renounce Drone-scepticism and profess their belief at the church of Drone they often pre-emptively banned known Drone sceptics and/or critics from even viewing their website(s)!!

A collective which was headed by -the then- recently promoted OMF moderator, *Nemo492*(Didier De Plaige) accompanied by the four most vocal pro-Drone OMF members (*10538* - *Tomi01uk* - *elevenaugust* - *Onthefence*). All of whom were openly very critical of Mufon for (surprise, surprise) dismissing the Drones as a hoax, DRT member *10538* after learning who Mufon's investigator was even followed the investigator (Steve Reichmuth) to his own forum to further enforce a Drone reality, well briefly anyway as he was banned fairly quickly. And when Carrion first showed up at OMF it was almost exclusively the DRT who shouted Carrion down and were disrespectful to the point of it being uncomfortable to read.

This incident is what I believe originally made Carrion resentful (for want of a better word) of OMF and it spurred him on to post a message to the (closed) Mufon boards asking if anyone knew of their real identities. I recently went to look for the post and was unable to locate it but it was posted by Carrion using Administrator status and you can click here for a screen-grab of the post in question.

It has also transpired during Carrion's recent sojourn at OMF (August 2009) which resulted in details of private emails being published (with expressed permission) that Carrion had contacted OMF admin back in April 2008 stating the following:



----- Original Message -----

From: "James Carrion" <jcarrion@EDIT>
To: <ivo5000@EDIT>; <bren@xxx.com>
Cc: <chris@EDIT>
Sent: Sunday, April 20, 2008 10:39 PM

Subject: RE: OM

In addition to libel does Nemo492 as standard practice also engage in copyright law violation? He posted a link in the OM Forum at (SINCE REMOVED) to his own web site at http://ovnis-usa.com/mufon-journal-april-2008-no-480/which contains a copyrighted article from the April MUFON Journal. I don't believe France is outside the realm of US copyright law. I expect that his offending post will be deleted.

Sincerely,

James Carrion
MUFON International Director



I only post this so the reader can appreciate how petty it all was it and also to highlight the bad-blood between all involved prior to this recent episode. Also, when Carrion first ventured to OMF it was DRT member *Elevenaugust* who was the worst offender with regrds to just generally disrespecting Carrion & his standing in the UFO community.

But this brings us full circle and my reason for mentioning this is it has recently came to my attention that DRT co-founder *elevenaugust* has popped up at another UFO forum (Alien-UFOs.com) where the intricacies of the Drones aren't really known and after being helpful (critical but helpful) for a few posts he started a thread titled “James Carrion vs Open Minds forum” and posted the following:



Posted by: elevenaugust Aug 28 2009, 06:50 PM

Unbelievable things happens over there!

James carrion, International Director of MUFON, question the rights for UFO forum administrator to be anonymous!

He came, as an ordinary troller, on this UFO forum, to spread disinformation and ask for a complete CV of the forum administrator, like if they were not real people!!

All the details in the concerned forum topic avalaible http://lucianarchy.proboards.com/index.cgi?board=cali1&action=display&thread=6287&page=1.

Please, take the time to read all the concerned topic, it seems to me that this have something to do with every UFO forum as well....

Oh my, is MUFON doing so bad??

(Source)



He then proceeded to post screen-shots of what DRT co-founder and OMF moderator *Nemo492* posted to his personal (French) Blog back in March 2009, there were two Blog posts in the link he posted and the first was from Nemo reporting on the Examiner article which cited that Mufon had a sponsor (Bigelow) and the second was explained by *elevenaugust* with the following:




“OK, a first-hand information, for you, about the MUFON:

A roughly translation from French of our French blog about the meeting, after the Barcelona exopolitics summit, between Didier dePlaige (aka Nemo492), our French administrator and the bilionnaire John RAO”

(Source)



And an excerpt of the conversation was as follows (as penned by *Nemo492*):

A man approached, smiling, seeing my badge that we were the few "survivors" of Congress, he was like me a few hours before him before taking his plane. The conversation was initiated with John Rao on his passion for ufology, scientific research, and personal plans.

We came early to speak of MUFON, he thinks it necessary to renovate in depth: "It is an aging organization, poorly structured and financed through membership can no longer allow him to fulfill his role. My team provides infrastructure already its 40th symposium, held in Denver, Colorado, from August 6 to 9 next ... "

I point out that the billionaire Robert Bigelow has pledged its financial support last March ... He corrects this first paragraph: "He was given the money!" (one U.S. agency gave the money to pay it to the MUFON). He added: "Bigelow and its sponsors are not interested in collecting the items for close encounters of the Third Type. It allows the authorities to continue to manage the phenomenon ..."

Screen capture 1 - Screen capture 2 - Screen capture 3



And *elevenaugust* also offers up a scoop by answering a question regarding OMF & Rao with the following:

(Source)



And also states that he believes Carrion is well aware of this:

(Source)



I should perhaps point out at this point that when I tried to access Nemo's Ovnis-USA website I received the following message:

But it's been that way for ages now and in the spirit of ‘full disclosure' (!) I should also mention that my IP address has been banned from viewing the DRT website practically since its inception, yep, you read that right….. These two bastions of truth and free speech don't even like me reading what they post publicly, and they in fact fear it to such an extent that they actively pursue, obtain and instantly ban my IP address at seemingly every opportunity. And when I publicly enquired on OMF as to how their moderator Nemo492 was obtaining my IP address after I'd repeatedly changed it I was banned from there as well, so I guess what I'm trying to say is I have no allegiance to OMF, DRT, Mufon or Carrion, my only pledge -if any- is to the truth (scarce as it may be).

So hopefully if you've managed to wade through my rambling prose you can arrive at your own decision about why Carrrion felt compelled to act as he did recently, and you can do so armed with what I believe are the relevant facts (well, as I found them).

No disinformation, I promise.....

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