[Hpn] PhillyIMC hacktivism

Coalition on Homelessness, SF coh@sfo.com
Sun, 06 Aug 2000 15:13:35 -0700


Wired.com on R2K brutality! PhillyIMC hacktivism. R2K Updates. D2K
by eco 3:19am Sun Aug 6 '00

Please forward widely. D2K activists should pay particular attention.
After you read these R2K articles you may never look at activism (or
hacktivism either) as you did before. To get to a version of this with
banners, and where all the link URLs are clickable, click this link:


Wired.com on R2K brutality! PhillyIMC hacktivism. R2K Updates. Please
forward widely. D2K activists should pay particular attention. After you
read these R2K articles you may never look at activism (or hacktivism
either) as you did before.

There is ever more media coverage of the brutality towards the R2K
"Criminal In-Justice System" protest arrestees. From some of the media
on this side of the pond. Describing the new George Bush "kinder,
gentler," police state.

Wired.com is a long-standing, popular, high-volume, news (of all kinds)
website. PhillyIMC.org is a cutting-edge media website right on the
frontlines in the Philadelphia, R2K Republican-friendly, police state.
The second Wired.com article describes some of the amazing technical
innovations used by PhillyIMC.org and others in covering the R2K
protests and Shadow convention. Spy/CounterSpy. Watching the watchers.
Keeping tabs on Big Brother.

Following the Wired.com articles are more updates from the R2K legal
team and others on the frontlines in Philadelphia "the city of brotherly
love." Concerning the hundreds of heroic R2K protest arrestees.


Ouch! That's Not Nice!
by Declan McCullagh.

3:00 a.m. Aug. 5, 2000 PDT

PHILADELPHIA -- Kazembe describes this city's police department with one
succinct word: Brutal.

When the African-American activist was imprisoned for taking part in
this week's protest against the Republican National Convention, he says
he witnessed beatings and mistreatment of inmates that were tantamount
to torture. On Tuesday, protesters sat down in city streets, blocking
intersections, until they were dragged off and arrested by police.

"They're using torture on some prisoners," said Kazembe, who would not
give his last name. "They tied your hands to your ankles (with
handcuffs). Then they turn you over and drop you."

Kazembe told Wired News he was released Thursday morning and his bail
was set at $10,000.

Other protesters reported similar mistreatment, including not receiving
water and food after being arrested.

Police couldn't immediately be reached for a response to specific
allegations, but at press conferences earlier this week, they denied
similar charges.

"They're absolutely untrue," Deputy Police Commissioner Thomas Nestel
told the Philadelphia Inquirer.

Police Commissioner John Timoney on Thursday asked the federal
government to move against activists who trek from city to city -- many
who showed up in Philadelphia are veterans of protests in Washington and

The legal wing of R2K, the umbrella group for the activists, reported on
Friday that "men have been dragged face down through a 'trash trough'
containing refuse, spittle, and urine."

A 36-year old woman who calls herself "Bork" said she was leaving a
march on City Hall for Mumia Abu-Jamal, who is on death row for
murdering a police officer, when a policeman tried to wrest her banner
from her.

"When I held (on to) it, he got very angry and aggressive," Bork said.
"Then he and three or four other cops grabbed me and a couple of kicks
were placed."

One side of her face was purplish-red and badly swollen. Bork said her
banner read "Stop the Texas Killing Machine," a reference to GOP
presidential nominee George W. Bush, an ardent supporter of the death

Many other protesters reported similar confrontations with police, and
some news organizations documented instances of brutality. The Inquirer
published a photograph of a city policeman ramming a protester with a
bicycle, and the Independent Media Center published a photo of a
policeman kicking an activist in the stomach.

In response, protesters staged a sit-in in front of the mayor's office
and maintained a vigil in the park across the street from the
"Roundhouse" police headquarters where some prisoners were being held.

At the bulk of the protests -- at least within sight of network camera
crews -- police were more restrained.

The dot-org that could: If you want to find minute-by-minute updates on
what's happening outside presidential conventions this year, don't turn
to cable TV or traditional news websites.

Instead, stop by the newest phenomenon to hit the political scene: the
Independent Media Center.

First created to provide a different perspective on the Seattle protests
last December, the IMC has evolved to become a surprisingly effective
news organization that includes over 100 reporters and editors. All
volunteers, they publish a daily newspaper, produce TV and radio shows,
and a frequently updated website at phillyimc.org.

While mainstream reporters stayed inside media tents outside the First
Union Center -- miles from downtown -- IMC reporters roamed the streets
of Philadelphia documenting protests and frequently breaking stories
about police clashes with activists.

"Four people arrested at sit-in at City Hall by officers from the
Narcotics Strike Force. 2 were mothers of the imprisoned, 1 was from the
People of Color Caucus, and the other is unidentified," reported one
update. The IMC website sometimes was updated with new information every
15 minutes, turning it into something akin to a protest newswire.

But many IMC reporters are activists themselves, a point that came up
during Tuesday and Wednesday night staff meetings. "Take off your badges
if you're going to participate," organizers advised.

Another IMC is planned for the Democratic National Convention in Los
Angeles later this month.

Tech-schmoozing: The GOP convention isn't just for political hacks.
Corporate lobbyists showed up en masse to schmooze with

Some of the largest names in the tech world, including America Online,
AT&T, Enron, IBM, Microsoft, Network Solutions, and Universal Studios
threw a bash on Thursday afternoon on behalf of the Congressional
Internet Caucus. Other sponsors included the Center for Democracy and
Technology, People for the American Way, the American Library
Association's Freedom to Read Foundation, and the Progress and Freedom

Senator Conrad Burns (R-Montana) and Representative Bob Goodlatte
(R-Virginia), caucus co-chairs, took a break from the more lavish
parties elsewhere in town -- this event's soggy spring rolls and
squashed mushroom pastries were beyond disappointing -- to make the
rounds of the room for about an hour.

The sponsors even chipped in for a door prize: a Rocket eBook. As the
guest of honor, Burns handed it to the lucky winner. "Here's your rocket
thing," said Burns, who didn't seem to have any idea what it was.


GOP Fertile Ground for Hackers.
by Declan McCullagh.

3:00 a.m. Aug. 5, 2000 PDT

PHILADELPHIA -- Call it a new type of hacktivism.

Using scanners, frequency counters, and large amounts of bravado,
hackers helped a team of journalists covering the Republican National
Convention to monitor police activities.

"I helped get together lists of frequencies," said Macki, a 19-year-old
student who also works on legendary hacker zine 2600 Magazine. "We were
using scanners mostly to dispatch reporters to hot spots."

Macki, who goes by that alias instead of his real name, was helping out
the Independent Media Center, a left-leaning collective of journalists
and activists who publish a website and newspaper, and also produce TV
and radio shows. Another IMC collective is planned for the Democratic
National Convention in mid-August.

"This has a direct correlation with hacking and the hacking community,"
Macki said. "They complement each other incredibly well. There's a huge

To learn which radio frequencies police are using, one enterprising
hacker even crept up to a parked Secret Service car in a parking garage
-- the neighborhood, home to hotels housing delegates and VIPs, was
swarming with police -- with a frequency-monitoring device.

Obtaining radio frequencies is important so reporters can be quickly
dispatched to protest scenes, which were widely scattered over downtown
Philadelphia. Eavesdropping on police transmissions is legal, although
federal police such as the Secret Service use digital gear that's
impractical to monitor.

A mailing list set up by local radio enthusiasts helped. "It was
incredible. I had a complete play-by-play," wrote one participant on
Friday. "Without this list I never would have checked the 2-5
band/channel 14, which was essential listening, and the info on Feds and
chopper traffic was also very helpful."

A 28-year-old local hacker who goes by Dr. Nick Da Ripper helped set up
IMC's network. Dr. Nick, who is a partner at an Internet provider called
Martnet, designed the system so it would be resistant to police

For instance: The IMC receives its 1.5 Mb/sec Internet connection from a
microwave dish on the roof of the 17-story building located just a few
blocks from City Hall on 13th Street. A cable snakes down from the roof
to the newsroom.

"If they cut the cable we have a couple of stick antennas (and could)
send it down wirelessly," Dr. Nick said.

Dr. Nick knows firsthand how cautious the Feds are: On Wednesday night,
he climbed to the top of the building to tune the rooftop dish.

"A moment later, we got buzzed by a police helicopter" and ordered away
via loudspeaker, Dr. Nick said. "It was at that point we decided we were
getting enough bandwidth."

Even the phillyimc.org website benefited from hackers of a different
sort: Programmers from the Debian core development team who devised the
news engine used to post and comment on articles. They adapted the code
used by geek culture destination Slashdot.

One novel feature of the site is that anyone can post articles without
having to obtain approval from an editor or moderator.

"A reader simply cannot handle everything -- most of it might be noise,"
said Guilherme Roschke, one of the IMC technical staff. "With open
submissions (you get) spam. We think we have achieved a good balance,
allowing as much open expression while preserving the usability of the


Released R2K Prisoners Hold Press conference.
By John Tarleton.

Posted Sunday August 06, @03:35AM at PhillyIMC.org website.

A half-dozen recently released R2K prisoners held an emotional press
conference Saturday afternoon. They described repeated instances of
police brutality and neglect during their time in custody. The
extraordinary bails (as high as $1 million) being levied against
protesters also came under fire.
"I think these bails are meant to stifle dissent," said Paul Hesnekker
of the R2K Legal Team. "It's part of an attempt to criminalize political
activism in this country."

Jimmy Graham, a legal oberver for the National Lawyers Guild, was
arrested when he tried to film a group of police officers who had
ambushed a young woman wearing a Rainbow-colored bandana. She was
suffering an asthma attack and vomiting. When Graham told her she would
be o.k., the police began slamming his head into the wall. He would
later be charged with four misdemenors: failure to disperse, disorderly
conduct, obstruction of a highway and obstruction of justice.

"I foolishly thought I wouldn't be arrested because I was a legal
observer," Graham said. "I thought the yellow hat would give me at least
a little bit of protection."

Graham was taken to the hospital for treatment of his head wounds. He
was told by a police officer that he would be charged with aggravated
assault of an officer for having done so.

Later, after he was discharged to the 23rd precinct station, Graham was
placed in a jail cell that had no running water with which he could wash
his wounds. Fellow prisoners used wawa tea cartons to pass along water
to Graham before they were confiscated by guards.

Jordan, a labor organizer from New York city, said that it was common at
the Roundhouse for five or six prisoners to be held in a single 5'x7'
cell with one metal cot. Joseph Rogers, a local Quaker activist, said
prisoners were subject to random beatings. "It didn't really matter if
you were cooperating," he said. "They still treated you with brutality."

Jessica Mammarella, a sophomore at Temple University, was one of 78
"puppetistas" arrested Tuesday at the puppet warehouse on 41st and
Haverford Avenue. She said she ws placed on a boiling hot bus for hours
without water before the police gave the 32 arrestees on board a 16 oz.
water bottle to share. Later, as it began raining, Mammarella was able
to stick her middle and index fingers through a slit in the bus window.
The rainwater ran down her arm and people took turns drinking it as it
trickled off her elbow. When people were too weak to get up, others
would cup their hands beneath Mammarella's elbows and carry the
rusty-tasting water to their friends.

"You guys don't think about it," she said."But it felt great to be able
to drink water."

Mammarella faces nine misdemenor charges. She posted a $1,500 bond,
which came out of tuition money she had saved for the fall semester.

"I feel so righteous," she said. "We did nothing wrong. Our puppets will
be seen" * * For more about what it's like to be in jail solidarity see,



Open Letter from R2K to Inmates.
By Open Letter from R2K to Inmates.

Posted Saturday August 05, @04:58PM at PhillyIMC.org website.

This note is from the R2K Legal collective. The person reading this note
is a public defender or member of the R2K defense team who has agreed to
read the note without modification. If you are concerned if this is a
fake-out, wait until you've heard the whole letter to decide that.

First, SOLIDARITY IS VOLUNTARY. IF you are feeling coerced or
uncomfortable with the idea, be realistic about the amount of discomfort
you are willing to accept and make your own decision. Of course we are
stronger together and we can survive hard things together, however YOU

That said, SOLIDARITY is AWESOME and holding at 75%. At 3pm Friday, of
approx 420 arrests, about 60 people have accepted release or have been
escorted out of the jails without consent. The convention is over and
Phila. doesn't need us in their jails. We have power together and we
encourage you to stay together. While this city is not familiar with
jail solidarity and some legal council may lead you to believe that
solidarity is ineffective, some people thought so in Seattle and DC and
we won there.

Some public defenders have said that bail amounts would be lower if you
'comply' - this has turned out to be untrue. The PD does not have the
control to make that true.

This is the current understanding of the legal collective of our
demands: no isolation, full medical treatment, all charges dropped
including felonies and people who have accepted bail, immediate release,
we want all 13 R2K lawyers access to the prisoners, we want our phone

Current prisoner tactics are: demanding jury trials, demanding to see
representatives of the R2K legal team, non-compliance, hunger strikes,
water fasts, puppet making, singing, and chanting.

Stronger tactics such as group non-compliance are appropriate when the
group is threatened by separation, when people are being seriously
abused, or specific concerns are not addressed such as medical
emergency. There are approx 150 people on hunger strike; two have been
hospitalized. Most jailhouse brutality is reported from RoundHouse and
conditions are better in County (PIC and CFCF).

Support from Phila. community is strong. People are coming down from New
York and other nearby cities on Sunday for a rally. Pam Africa and Rev.
Al Sharpton spoke in support of us at a rallies across the street from
RoundHouse. Quakers and other local communities of faith held a
candlelight vigil in the park which was beautiful and powerful. Support
pours in from around the US through emails and phone calls both to us
and to City Council, Mayor, and Police offices. Mothers held a sit-in at
Mayor Street's office on Friday. We're reaching out to the local
community and getting your stories out into the media. In short, we on
the outside are doing EVERYTHING we can think of to support you and
honor your contribution to raising awareness and fighting for justice.
You are heroes.

Brutality, abuse and captivity can lead to disempowering feelings,
physical and mental exhaustion. History tells us that the best way to
fight lasting traumatic effects is to STAY TOGETHER - talk together,
learn from each other. It will be important to grieve our losses now or
later. If you are sad about the loss of liberty, the loss of trust in
the system, the loss of optimism or purpose, or the loss of faith in the
people around you - it is important to feel that. Acknowledging these
losses sooner rather than later is healthiest.

Stay strong, be concerned without fear. Call us when you can. We love
you. 215 925 6791


*Greens and the Drug War. Worldwide. LINKS. Green Party candidates,
positions, platforms, etc.. Concerning the Drug War, cannabis,
marijuana, etc.. Ralph Nader info, links.

*U.S. Rightist Republican-led (GOP) Drug War. GOP fascists lead,
Democrat flunkies follow. Huge LINKS list! Revised edition. GOP's holy
war. Drug war leaders: rabid right, hate radio, hate television, NRA
(National Rifle Association), religious right, (snortin') George Bush
the hypocrite, etc.. Amnesty 2000.

*Uncle Sam banners! USA has 2 million of the world's 8 million
prisoners. USA has only 5% of the world's population, yet has 25% of the
world's inmates. The USA, as of late 1999, surpassed Russia, and now has
the world's highest incarceration rate, 5 to 17 times higher than all
other Western (long democratic traditions) nations. Drug war banners for
free! 2 million prisoners in the USA gulags. Paste these free banners
into webpages worldwide. Land of the Free? Only for corporate greed, and
the prison industrial complex.

*GOT COKE? Banners. George W. Bush, drug-free since 1974? Hypocrisy with
bravado. Republican drug warrior extraordinaire. PHOTOS and BANNERS!
Free! For your webpages!

USA has 2 million of the world's 8 million inmates. 14K. FREE BANNER!

*World Incarceration Rates chart. 28K. FREE CHART GRAPHIC!

George W. Bush and Amnesty 2000. 13K. FREE BANNER!

U.S. Drug War Incarceration Nation CHART:

>  http://www.angelfire.com/rnb/y/charts2.htm _
>  http://www.ojp.usdoj.gov/bjs/glance/corr2.txt ___________________
>  http://www.sproject.com/press-12.htm ____________________________
>  http://www.sentencingproject.org/pubs/tsppubs/9030data.html _____
>  http://www.angelfire.com/rnb/y/gop.htm __________________________
>  http://www.census.gov/population/estimates/nation/intfile1-1.txt
>  http://www.census.gov/population/estimates/nation/popclockest.txt
>  http://www.albany.edu/sourcebook/1995/pdf/t636.pdf ______________


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