Wednesday, August 01, 2007

Cops Behaving Badly - Historical Division

Which Ones Were Criminals? -- OK, not having a TV is handicap sometimes. I missed this story completely. If not for a recap in the WSJ, I would have missed it completely.
In 1965, the FBI framed four innocent men in a gangland murder to protect two mobsters it was trying to cultivate as informants. Agents in the FBI's Boston office and their bosses in Washington spent the next three decades dissuading re-examination of the case, as the men grew old in prison, away from their families. Not until honest prosecutors got into the case in the mid-1990s did it begin to unravel.
There are a lot of comments on this today, but this sentence seems to sum up my feelings.
This is the kind of abuse we've long associated with the KGB or the old East German Stasi, not the FBI.
This goes way beyond incompetence, this is conspiracy of the worst kind. If any of the people working for the FBI on this case are still around, they need to punished to greatest extent of the law.

People - both right and left - believe that the police are there to protect you. This story and many others just highlights the fact that the system has goals of its own, and if sending innocent men to jail for 33 years (or the rest of their lives since 2 innocent men died in prison) furthers their goals, then too bad. You are just "little people" after all.

The FBI wants to assure us, that this can't happen today. Bovine Scatology. If anything, cops are less interested in the law and more interested in "order" than they were in 1965. Witness the illegal seizure of firearms after Hurricane Katrina and New Orlean's reluctance to return weapons illegally confiscated. (And it wasn't just NOLA PD doing the confiscating.)

The founders of this country worried about the effect standing armies would have on freedoms. Police in this country are beginning to have the effect they thought the army would have.

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