Homeland Security launches new ads for public awareness campaign
Department of Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano addresses a gathering at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Wednesday recounting security challenges since 9/11 Photo by Paul Courson
August 17th, 2011
03:24 PM ET

Homeland Security launches new ads for public awareness campaign

By CNN Producer Paul Courson

Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano unveiled new television ads Wednesday for the public awareness campaign "If you see something, say something," as the 10th anniversary of the September 11, 2001, attacks nears.

"Today, we are stronger than we were on 9/11," Napolitano said, but added, "There are no guarantees in this world."

"What we can do is maximize our ability to prevent an attack from occurring, minimize the ability of such an attack having a large impact and increase our ability to respond."

Video of the new television ads was played during Napolitano's remarks at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. One of them is set in a public transit station, where pedestrians watch as someone pulls a handbag from the trunk of a car and leaves it on a bench in the waiting area.

With dramatic, unsettling music in the background, the announcer intones, "It's nothing, you think. Can you be sure?"

Napolitano said the videos are not intended to be alarmist, nor do they suggest only a vague threat, as did the security alert "color code" of years past.

"We want the public to live with information, but not to live in fear," Napolitano said in response to a reporter's question. "When they have information, that helps reduce the level of fear."

"'See something, say something' is the same thing," she said of the campaign, which was officially launched in February. It's "what we would call situational awareness" by the public.

The phrase "If you see something, say something" was originally coined and trademarked by New York City's Metropolitan Transportation Authority in 2002. According to the MTA website, the agency has since licensed the tagline to "54 domestic and international transportation providers and government agencies for use in their own anti-terrorism campaigns."

Also attending Wednesday's gathering at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce was former DHS Secretary Tom Ridge, who was critical of the slow pace and sometimes incomplete manner in which security concerns first identified in the wake of the 9/11 attacks were addressed.

"We are safer, we are more secure, but the threat remains," Ridge said.

He cited dramatic improvement in the documentation of people granted visas to enter the United States. But he said there is no matching level of documentation for when and if those people leave the country.
"I can't tell you today how many have overstayed their visa, 'cause we never invented the exit system," Ridge said, his voice rising.

"You can imagine, several million visitors over the past couple of years, do you think anybody's overstayed their visa?" Ridge asked. "Do you know where they are? Do you know what they're doing?"
"As good as (the Department of) Homeland Security has become, and as strong as it's become, it's not perfect; no institution of government is perfect. It is a consumer of information, and it can only act on information given to it."

On another priority that was supposed to be fixed by now, Ridge said he is agitated that, 10 years later, communications problems remain among emergency responders across the country. "We have the capacity, we have the technology. What we don't have is the political courage and the focus to try to help these men and women, who we celebrate with speeches," he said.

"If we're really that concerned," Ridge continued, the nation should "finally build a platform, a foundation, so that these men and women have that interoperable communications system."

Ridge also said it's time to discontinue using the words "war on terror." He said "it's really a war against a belief system, isn't it, and the ideology of hatred, and evil ideology."

"As long as it has appeal to even the smallest number of individuals, within the broader Muslim community of a billion-plus, the global scourge of terrorism will be with us."

Despite that forecast, Ridge praised Napolitano's public awareness campaign as a "gentle reminder."
"Just be alert, be aware; if you see something, say something. I think it's a very good admonition, a very good charge for the American citizen."


Filed under: 9/11 • Homeland Security • Living With Terror • Napolitano • Terrorism
soundoff (94 Responses)
  1. rajeev

    Patriot Acts: Narratives of Post-9/11 Injustice

    Adama Bah shares her shocking experience: At just sixteen, the FBI forcefully entered her home before degrading, arresting, and deporting her family.

    Voice of Witness's Patriot Acts: Narratives of Post-9/11 Injustice, is edited by Alia Malek, an author (A Country Called Amreeka) and former Department of Justice attorney. A groundbreaking collection of oral histories, Patriot Acts tells the stories of men and women who have been needlessly swept up in the War on Terror. In their own words, narrators recount personal experiences of the post-9/11 backlash that have deeply altered their lives and communities. For more information on the book and to learn more about Voice of Witness visit http://www.voiceofwitness.org.

    On March 24, 2005, Adama Bah, a sixteen-year-old Muslim girl, awoke at dawn to discover nearly a dozen armed FBI agents inside her family’s apartment in East Harlem. They arrested her and her father, Mamadou Bah, and transported them to separate detention facilities. A government document leaked to the press claimed that Adama was a potential suicide bomber but failed to provide any evidence to support this claim. Released after six weeks in detention, Adama was forced to live under partial house arrest with an ankle bracelet, a government-enforced curfew, and a court-issued gag order that prohibited her from speaking about her case. In August of 2006, Adama’s father was deported back to Guinea, Africa. Adama, who had traveled to the United States with her parents from Guinea as a child, also found herself facing deportation. She would spend the next few years fighting for asylum and struggling to support her family in the United States and Guinea.

    The morning of March 24, 2005, my family and I were in the house sleeping. Someone knocked on the door, and my mom went and opened it. These men barged in, waking us up. I always sleep with the blanket over my head. They pull the blanket off my head, I look up, I see a man. He said, “You’ve got to get out!” I’m like, What the hell, what’s going on?

    I saw about ten to fifteen people in our apartment and right outside our door in the hallway. They were mostly men, but there were two women. Some had FBI jackets, and others were from the police department and the DHS. We were all forced out of the bed and told to sit in the living room. They were going through papers, throwing stuff around, yelling and talking to each other, then whispering. I heard them yelling at my mother in the background, and my mom can’t speak much English, and they were pulling her into the kitchen, yelling at her, “We’re going to deport you and your whole family!”

    This whole time, I was thinking, What’s going on? What are they talking about? I knew my dad had an issue with his papers, but I didn’t think that my mom did. They kept saying, “We’re going to send all of you back to your country.”

    Then I saw my dad walking in, in handcuffs. They had gone to the mosque to get him. It was the scariest thing you could ever see; I had just never seen my father so powerless. He was always this guy you didn’t mess with. If he said do it, you did it. He was just someone you didn’t cross paths with.

    They took him to the kitchen, whispered something to him.

    He sat down, looked at us. He said, “Everything’s going to be fine, don’t worry.” And then I knew nothing was fine, I knew something was wrong. They told him to tell us what was going on. He told us that they were going to arrest him and they were going to take him away.

    The FBI agents told me to get up and get my sneakers. I was thinking they wanted to see my sneaker collection. I have all types of colors of sneakers. I went and grabbed them. I said, “I have this one, I have this one, I have this one.”

    One of the agents said, “Choose one.”

    My favorite color is blue, so I picked up a blue pair and said, “This one.”

    He said, “Put them on.”

    I said, “Okay, but I know they fit me.” He said, “Put them on!” He was very nasty. Then he said, “All those earrings have to go out.” I have eight piercings on each side, a nose ring, and a tongue ring. I went to the kitchen to take them off, and they followed me in there.

    My breath was stinking. I asked, “Can I at least brush my teeth? My breath stinks really bad. Can I use the bathroom?”

    They said, “No. We have to go. You’re coming with us.”

    I said, “Where am I going to go? Am I going with my dad?” I put on my jacket.

    They let me put my headscarf and abaya on. Then one of the women took out handcuffs. I panicked so badly, I was stuttering, “What did I do? Where are we going?”

    First time in my life, I’m sixteen years old, in handcuffs. I looked at my dad, and he said, “Just do what they say.”

    My mom didn’t know I was going. When we got out the door, she said, “Where she go? Where she go?” the agents said, “We’re taking her,” and they held my mom back. The man who seemed to be in charge put his hands on my mother to stop her.

    They took me and my dad and put us in the same car. I was scared. I said to him, “What’s going on? What’s going to happen?” My dad said, “Don’t say anything, we’re going to get a lawyer. It’s okay, everything is going to be fine.”

    There were two Escalades driving with us. I was looking around, paying attention. I recognized the Brooklyn Bridge, I recognized a lot of landmarks, but I didn’t recognize the building where my father and I were taken. We got out of the car and we walked past a security booth where the cars drive up to, before taking a ramp beneath the building to the parking lot. Once we were inside the building, they put me in my own cell. It was white, with a bench. No bars. No windows. There was a door that had a tiny glass pane, and I could see who was out there. I just saw a bunch of computers and tables, and people walking back and forth and talking. I kept seeing them talk to my dad.

    I don’t know how long I was in there.

    I was nervous, I was panicking, I was crying, I was trying to figure out what was going on. And I was constantly using the bathroom.

    The toilet was an open toilet, though. There was a camera on the ceiling in the middle of the room. I was wondering, Can they see me peeing? I just wrapped blankets around me as I was peeing.

    Hours later, Adama was removed from her cell for questioning, during which she learned that she was not, in fact, a U.S. citizen. While being fingerprinted, she saw that another teen from her mosque, named Tashnuba, had also been detained. Here, she recounts her final interrogation before being transported to a detention facility in Pennsylvania.

    Finally I was brought to another room. This room had a table, a chair on one side, and two chairs on the other side. A federal agent walked in. She said, “I need to talk to you about something.” The questions she was asking had nothing to do with immigration. They were terrorism questions. She asked me about people from London, about people from all over the world. I thought, What’s going on?

    The male interrogator told me that the religious study group Tashnuba was part of had been started by a guy who was wanted by the FBI. I had no idea if that was true or not.

    The study group at the mosque was all women. So it was women learning about religion, women’s empowerment, why we cover, how we do the prayer, when to pray, things like that. It was more for converts and new people who had just come into Islam. There was nothing about jihad or anything like that.

    I wasn’t part of the group, but Tashnuba was. We were the same age, sixteen. So, they asked me about this group and they told me they’d taken my computer and my diary. My diary was a black-and-white notebook. I had phone numbers, I had notes, I had stories in it, I had everything. Basically, they asked me about every contact in there, they asked me about every little thing. But, there’s nothing in there about jihad, there’s nothing in there about anything that’s suspicious. There was nothing in there at all. So I wasn’t worried.

    They said, “We have your computer, we can find whatever you’re hiding.” I said, “Go ahead, look in my computer. I have nothing to hide.”

    They kept making a scene, like there was something big there. They said, “Don’t lie to us. If you lie to us, we’ll have proof, we’ll catch you in your lie.”

    I knew there was nothing in my computer, but at the end of the day, I started to doubt myself. I thought, Okay, what’s going on now? Is there something there? Their technique is to make you doubt yourself. But then I thought, Wait a minute, I’m not this person. What are they talking about?

    The interrogation lasted a long time. This Secret Service guy came in. He asked me how I felt about Bush. I said, “I don’t like him.” I was being very honest with them. There was nothing to hide.

    The Secret Service guy was just too aggressive. He said, “I don’t understand—why do you choose to cover when women choose to wear less and less every day?”

    I said, “It’s freedom of choice. Some people want to show some stuff, some people want to hide things. Some people want to preserve their bodies, some people don’t want to. They want to show it to the whole world.”

    He said, “I don’t understand. You’re young, why are you doing this?”

    Then they asked me about Tashnuba. They asked me about her name, they asked me about her family, but I told them, “I don’t know her.”

    They said, “Tashnuba wrote you on this list.”

    I said, “What list?”

    They said, “She signed you up to be a suicide bomber.”

    I said, “Are you serious? Why would she do that? She doesn’t seem like that type of person.”

    They were trying to make me seem like I was wrong about who I knew and who I didn’t know.

    August 27, 2011 at 11:29 am | Reply
    • rajeev

      http://www.alternet.org/story/151650/patriot_acts%3A_narratives_of_post-9_11_injustice/

      August 27, 2011 at 11:30 am | Reply
  2. phil

    If we're being told to snitch on everyone, then what the hell are we paying DHS for?

    August 18, 2011 at 2:30 pm | Reply
  3. Vanessa

    Living in fear is no way to live. This is exactly what Al Qaeda wants us to do.

    August 18, 2011 at 1:19 pm | Reply
  4. Vanessa

    This ridiculous campaign is just reinforcing and supporting racism in america, and stripping our rights and our freedoms. I don't need a campaign to tell me to report something if I see it. But just because I see a man on a plane that appears to be middle eastern or Muslim, doesn't mean I should feel nervous. People need to educate themselves on the histories of hijackings and terrorists activities and realize it is a multitude of backgrounds and cultures that do this. This is disgusting. Big brother is watching everything. I agree with Juergen who posted about a similar experience in Germany.

    August 18, 2011 at 1:18 pm | Reply
  5. Juergen

    I grew up in former East Germany and I guarantee you that this system will sooner or later go the same way. Want to have a successful affair with your neighbour's wife? Just report her husband for "suspicious" activity. Did your boss make you angry? Just report him for "suspicious" activity, and remember you can do this all anonymously! Your government is having you live in fear very similar to where I grew up and I think that most Americans don't realise it.

    August 18, 2011 at 12:15 pm | Reply
    • phil

      First they came for the communists,
      and I didn't speak out because I wasn't a communist.

      Then they came for the trade unionists,
      and I didn't speak out because I wasn't a trade unionist.

      Then they came for the Jews,
      and I didn't speak out because I wasn't a Jew.

      Then they came for me
      and there was no one left to speak out for me.

      August 18, 2011 at 2:29 pm | Reply
  6. Karen

    I've seen one of her ads. It's appears to have been made by the same people that make the Brinks Home Security commercials. If it's white, it ain't right. Pretty racist stuff.

    August 18, 2011 at 4:30 am | Reply
  7. Evan

    All of you are dancing to a tune. Do you honestly believe that people living on 8 dollars a day are coming after you with the fury of God himself? Honestly, these people are concerned about bread and keeping there children safe from bombardment. Spend a quarter of the defense budget on feeding people and you have no more strife.

    August 18, 2011 at 4:13 am | Reply
    • jzin

      You're absolutely right. These people who make 8 dollars a day have no reason to spend their poverty stricken life attacking us. I mean, take the 9/11 attacks. Those guys weren't making 8 dollars an hour, they were making at least $8.10 or something close. Think before you speak next time you uneducated donkey.

      August 18, 2011 at 11:20 am | Reply
  8. America First

    OK, Janet was the worst governor in history at keeping illegals out of the country; here's an idea, let's make her head of homeland security.
    With this 100 million dollar ad campaign she's added to her responsibilities by becoming the propagandista for her masters; the military industrial/chamber of commerce/globalist/wall street/free trade complex; working hard to keep Americans afraid and supporting the wars in the Middle East. Janet knows she will be richly rewarded by them when Obama is voted out of office and she is fired.
    Take our country and our individual freedoms back.
    Ron Paul 2012

    August 18, 2011 at 3:50 am | Reply
  9. SDN

    Does this mean we should 'say something' when we see someone being searched without cause at an airport. How far will this go before confrontations become commonplace? Illegal searches are illegal, no matter the rationale. When we realize the Constitution is being treated as an interesting relic, rather than a prohibition of a police state, it will be too late.

    August 18, 2011 at 3:07 am | Reply
  10. Void

    When you ride alone, you ride with Hitler.

    August 18, 2011 at 1:45 am | Reply
    • Nancy

      when 100% of hijackers are muslim it's no longer a profile, it's a description of the suspect

      August 18, 2011 at 1:53 am | Reply
      • George

        Feel free to educate yourself and learn about all the non-muslim hijackings:
        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_aircraft_hijackings

        August 18, 2011 at 2:28 am |
      • David

        The last terrorist was a Norwegian terrorist, right wing extremist, Israel lover and "very" Christian. You did not notice that. Oh sorry you are a racist this means you are blind.

        August 18, 2011 at 3:31 am |
  11. JB

    This is absolute trash. As a descendant of one of our founding fathers, I flatly refuse to buy into this hysterical junk campaign. What’s next Washington? How else will you ignore the consequences of historical record, mortify posterity and generally disgust anyone smarter than the average constituent? These politicos are starting a brain drain, and I will not stick around for much more of this idiocy before I run back to the old country, taking my intelligence, my money, my family and every hope of me contributing anything worthwhile to the good of this Nation. You've now been warned fairly of the consequences, and I will not have the slightest guilt or hesitation to follow through on this.

    August 18, 2011 at 1:45 am | Reply
    • SDN

      JB: The list gets longer daily. Those that hear what history can teach us will be heading for the door – leaving behind the proud, but ignorant to pay the price. Survival of those paying attention.

      August 18, 2011 at 3:12 am | Reply
  12. Mott Hoople

    All the young dudes need to listen to Ron Paul and carry the news. I'd enjoy listening to Janet and Alex Jones debate on CNN.

    August 18, 2011 at 1:40 am | Reply
  13. Overmann

    I'm ambivalent as to what is more terrifying: Homeland Security having or not having an advertising campaign.

    August 18, 2011 at 1:36 am | Reply
  14. George

    "If you see something, say something,"

    OK! I was in an airport and I saw over a hundred citizens be SEXUALLY ASSAULTED BY GOVERNMENT EMPLOYEES!

    August 18, 2011 at 1:28 am | Reply
  15. Jason L.

    I wonder how much money we could save if we got rid of this useless federal department. It is unnecessary, and a waste of taxpayer dollars. It wasn't around before 9/11, and even if it had been, it wouldn't have prevented it. It is just a rouse to take our rights away, we can do without it.

    August 18, 2011 at 1:13 am | Reply
    • phil

      Here Here! Bloated Bureaucratic life sucking, rights violating, money wasting, genital feeling, kid groping, gun toting strong arm for the Music and Movie industry. Get rid of it!

      August 18, 2011 at 1:41 am | Reply
  16. Sumero Kolcak

    GEORGE BUSH STARTED THE WAR RIGHT AFTER PRIEST ABUSE AGAINST LITTLE CHILDREN. 9/11 IS A WAY TO DIVERT MEDIA'S ATTENTION FROM THE FACT THAT GEORGE BUSH'S FRIENDS THAT ARE PRIESTS ARE MOLESTING LITTLE CHILDREN IN CHURCHES.

    – SUMER KOLCAK

    August 18, 2011 at 1:00 am | Reply
  17. Eric Jordan

    The only terrorists are our own out of control government trying to establish a security apparatus to watch us all and keep us locked in fear 24-7.

    VOTE RON PAUL. End the insane criminal government complex! We're tired of it!

    August 18, 2011 at 12:59 am | Reply
    • OK

      It's working on you.

      August 18, 2011 at 1:36 am | Reply
  18. J Brown

    Ron Paul 2012

    August 18, 2011 at 12:48 am | Reply
  19. Jackass

    How stupid are people that they don't already know these things?

    August 18, 2011 at 12:47 am | Reply
  20. lindsay

    you have no idea what we do everyday and how many lives we save. these comments disgust me

    August 18, 2011 at 12:44 am | Reply
    • There Is Hope

      Sorry Lindsay, but I'm not buying it. I'm sure setting the national speed limit to 20mph would save a lot of lives too, but that's woefully inefficient. Answers can be found in other areas (such as a more moral and straightforward foreign policy) rather than stripping Americans of their liberties while flushing tax dollars down the drain.

      August 18, 2011 at 12:56 am | Reply
      • Jason L.

        Amen. I wonder how much "lindsay" is getting paid to come on here and post to defend DHS?

        August 18, 2011 at 1:15 am |
    • Jason L.

      Anyone that works for the farce that the DHS is disgusts me. A front to American liberty, and a burden to the taxpayer. Sick.

      August 18, 2011 at 1:14 am | Reply
    • George

      I'm assuming you're a TSA employee. How many lives have you saved? Zero. How many terrorists have you caught since the inception of the TSA? Zero. How many genitals have you fondled? How many naked pictures of children have you taken. You and people like you disgust me. You are disgusting criminals working for a sick, perverted, and useless agency. Everyone in the TSA from Janet Neopolitan to you should be jailed and charged with sexual assault.

      August 18, 2011 at 1:31 am | Reply
    • phil

      People are upset at the unconstitutional policies of this bloated department... not the individual agents just doing their job. But your defense of these policies clearly shows which side you're on. Good luck with that.

      August 18, 2011 at 1:49 am | Reply
    • Alec

      @lindasy: And you have no idea how much the American public loathes the TSA and DHS and their incompetent personnel.

      August 18, 2011 at 3:05 am | Reply
  21. AlohaBetty

    If you see something, say something? Wow. I feel so much safer now!

    August 18, 2011 at 12:35 am | Reply
    • Tater

      I saw something I like to report...a big brainwashed ninny trying to fake scare tactics to keep the people from seeing who the real terrorists are.....the banking/pharma/war cult that is destroying freedom....Ron Paul/Dennis Kucinich 2012 Baby!!!!!

      August 18, 2011 at 12:47 am | Reply
  22. PGelsman

    Every time I hear 'Homeland Security' I think of the fatherland and all that implies.

    August 18, 2011 at 12:17 am | Reply
    • Jason L.

      Indeed. Another word for "big brother"

      August 18, 2011 at 1:16 am | Reply
  23. YourAverageStooge

    Well, i dunno....I did see the TV-man news report show tell me that the FBI helped train da Turrist that flew in da towers? But I still need people who got better smiley faces on da report papers in public school to stick there hands down my pants to keep me safe! You dont like them touching your peepee parts your not Amurkin! The consitution is fer da terrorists! duhh that Raun Paul character is weird tooo! he wants freedom! whatevera dat is durrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr

    August 18, 2011 at 12:14 am | Reply
  24. Carl

    The gig is up. Does anyone still believe the B.S. spouted by these neo-Gestapos? Ron Paul 2012!

    August 18, 2011 at 12:07 am | Reply
  25. vomitus maximus

    "Just be alert, be aware; if you see something, say something. I think it's a very good admonition, a very good charge for the American citizen."

    I think he meant to say ,'very good ammunition'?

    August 18, 2011 at 12:02 am | Reply
  26. Jason

    Not really into her excuses, for stripping the diapers off of old people, at checkpoints.

    August 18, 2011 at 12:01 am | Reply
    • Jason L.

      But... but... but it is necessary for YOUR safety.

      August 18, 2011 at 1:17 am | Reply
    • Alec

      Hey! Those smelly diapers can be used by terrorists to disable the plane! The diaper fumes are toxic!

      August 18, 2011 at 3:07 am | Reply
  27. Mahmoud El-Darwish

    RE: Tom Ridge "Ridge also said it's time to discontinue using the words "war on terror." He said "it's really a war against a belief system, isn't it, and the ideology of hatred, and evil ideology."
    Indeed. Nice to see the coming around to sensibility.

    August 17, 2011 at 11:29 pm | Reply
  28. oneSTARman

    11 Million people in the U.S. with FAKE Social Security Numbers an or Phony I.D. are a National Security Threat. NOT because every Illegal Immigrant is a CRIMINAL TERRORIST – Almost NONE of them are. But because of them – the whole SYSTEM is BROKEN. Every Illegal Immigrant needs REAL I.D. issued by the Government so that the REAL BAD GUYS can be identified whenever and wherever they are located.

    August 17, 2011 at 11:18 pm | Reply
    • admiral kush

      found one

      August 17, 2011 at 11:28 pm | Reply
  29. Jim

    New Homeland Security ad: "It's not sodomy when WE do it."

    August 17, 2011 at 10:55 pm | Reply
    • Jason L.

      Nice one!

      August 18, 2011 at 1:17 am | Reply
  30. Pimpson

    Napolitano = failure.

    August 17, 2011 at 10:42 pm | Reply
  31. There Is Hope

    Wow, reading these comments actually gives me hope in America's future (minus that guy out in Santa Fe). People have had enough and are finally waking up. Hopefully the establishment can be shaken up in the elections next year and liberty can once again be prosperous.

    August 17, 2011 at 10:42 pm | Reply
  32. 112321

    Fear mongers

    August 17, 2011 at 10:30 pm | Reply
  33. nofed

    An organization inspired by the nazis. Hitler talked about homeland security. Being that it started during a nazis presidency, bush family thatis. No wonder. Homeland security your Nazi Big brother™

    August 17, 2011 at 10:23 pm | Reply
    • MJ

      And yet, Homeland inSecurity has grown more under Obama than Bush. Quit drinking the koolaid, kid. Both parties are out there to screw you.

      August 17, 2011 at 10:46 pm | Reply
  34. Steve

    It is a screwed up society when you can trade-mark a simple common sentence: "If you see something, say something"
    Remember when a pharma company was patenting people's DNA? The court struck it down fortunately.

    August 17, 2011 at 10:04 pm | Reply
    • ratmot

      At 17 I had to get my parents written approval to join the USMC.

      I was young, a bit nigh eve, but full of a sense of patriotic duty.

      20+ years later here I sit, realizing that what was once a sense of patriotism has turned to trepidation for the path our Nation is heading down. A sense that I may soon fear my Government outright. A fear that I'll have good reason to.

      I wonder how long it will be before Gitmo is full of Americans. I wonder if we'll even know they're there.

      August 17, 2011 at 10:29 pm | Reply
      • George

        America IS Gitmo.

        August 17, 2011 at 10:47 pm |
  35. Corey

    Thanks Big Brother! I can't wait to hear about all the uneducated bozos who flood your tip lines every time they see something remotely "suspicious". I predict phone calls about potential bomb threats are gonna go through the roof and many many thousands of tax dollars will be spent on bomb disposal teams spending 12 hours to have a robot look inside somebodies forgotten suitcase or purse or whatever.

    August 17, 2011 at 9:57 pm | Reply
  36. aswoc

    “Those who desire to give up freedom in order to gain security will not have, nor do they deserve, either one.” Ben Franlin

    August 17, 2011 at 9:53 pm | Reply
    • Wide Open

      "All the perplexities, confusion and distress in America arise, not from defects in their Constitution or Confederation, not from want of honor or virtue, so much as from the downright ignorance of the nature of coin, credit and circulation. "

      -John Adams

      August 18, 2011 at 12:12 am | Reply
    • Jason L.

      Truer words have never been spoken.

      August 18, 2011 at 1:25 am | Reply
  37. Whombatt

    See something, say something. OK, I see TSA idiots, so "TSA stands for Terribly Stupid Aholes"

    August 17, 2011 at 9:52 pm | Reply
    • inparadise

      TSA: THOUSANDS STANDING AROUND (doing nothing)!

      August 17, 2011 at 10:46 pm | Reply
  38. Momzilla

    OK so people are starting to fight back against the silly, over bearing, ignorant TSA people who feel up little kids, make dying grandmothers shed their Depends and cause colostomy bags to leak all over passengers. Obviously we must come up with a Plan B. Got it! Spy on your neighbors! Yup that will absolutely be the next best step!

    Terrorists dont' HAVE to do anything . Just sit back and watch us self destruct – no worries – the government will accomplish their ends for them.

    August 17, 2011 at 9:48 pm | Reply
  39. Jon

    Homeland Security should be renamed the KGB. "Inform on your fellow citizen" they say...Why don't we just pull down the stars and stripes and run up the Hammer and Sickle of the old Soviet Union....

    Homeland insecurity is a disaster–it was a disaster when it was formed and it is still a disaster. The intent is to keep the people scared to death in order to make them easier to control...nothing more.

    August 17, 2011 at 9:26 pm | Reply
    • Jason L.

      Agreed. When government spreads big brother propaganda like this, it makes me distrust them even more, and less likely to report something I might have otherwise reported. Turning our country into a nation of snoops that distrust and are paranoid of each other is not what this country was supposed to be about. It is common sense to turn someone in if you suspect a credible threat to the welfare of the general public, when government has to reiterate that, than you know there is an ulterior motive. I wish the DHS had never been created, and the USA Patriot Act had never passed.

      August 18, 2011 at 1:24 am | Reply
  40. Manniman

    It begins with spying on each other with "see something say something" and it ends in George Orwell's 1984...

    August 17, 2011 at 9:20 pm | Reply
    • DerWeissEngel

      You got that right!

      August 17, 2011 at 9:34 pm | Reply
    • M Darius

      100 % agree !
      V for Vendetta !!!

      August 17, 2011 at 9:36 pm | Reply
    • Tia

      For some reason this whole "See something, say something" campaign reminds me more of McCarthyism and the Salem Witch Trials than dealing with a real threat.

      August 17, 2011 at 11:14 pm | Reply
      • admiral kush

        yo got that right. especially the part about the relation to this and the Mcarthy cases. Once blamed, even after proved innocent, you are still looked upon as being guilty.

        August 17, 2011 at 11:25 pm |
  41. GW

    I wouldn't put it past our government. The precedent gets set and then the "terroist" label is given to whoever opposes tyranny. Tyranny and revolution is a cycle that's repeated since government came into existence.

    August 17, 2011 at 9:12 pm | Reply
  42. NOBAMA

    This is a bunch of B.S.......homeland security is such a joke

    August 17, 2011 at 8:49 pm | Reply
    • Wzrd1

      Jokes are funny, there is nothing funny about the dhSS.

      August 17, 2011 at 9:03 pm | Reply
    • Tom in Santa Fe

      We are all a piece in the integral workings of Homeland Security. You state that Homeland Security is a joke? What if the street Vendor in Times Square took the same ignorant approach as you and didn't bother calling FDNY/NYPD? Faisal Shahzad would have been a bigger hero to the terrorists and could possibly have gotten away. There is a fine line between being a nosy-body and alerting authroities to potential threats. Terrorists do not care what you think or feel – you live in America so that makes you a target just like me.

      August 17, 2011 at 9:19 pm | Reply
      • Jon

        Homeland security IS a joke. A Sad joke, a joke that is intent on making the US like China or like Orwells 1984 or V for Vendetta–but a joke nonetheless.

        August 17, 2011 at 9:29 pm |
      • Jon

        If being a "target" as you put it is the price of living in a FREE country, then so be it. If you are unwilling to pay that price I am sure there are other "more secure" countries like China you could live in.

        You can have government provided security or you can be FREE–but you cannot have both.

        August 17, 2011 at 9:32 pm |
      • DerWeissEngel

        Like they say in New Hampshire: Live free or die!

        August 17, 2011 at 9:36 pm |
      • Richard

        Yes DHS is a joke. This 'see something, say something' is exactly what took place in Nazi Germany and in the Soviet Union. Dangerous precedents have been set in the past and we are following in those same footsteps. We are starting to enter dangerous times, not from terrorism, but from what our government will try and to in the name of safety and protection. You are more likely to be struck by lightning then to die in a domestic terror attack.

        As for living in America and automatically being a target. Yes I may be a potential target and I am fine with that, there are principals this country was founded upon that are bigger than any of o\us and if we are not willing to fight and die for those principals, then we only believe in them. We do nothing to defend and uphold them from tyranny.

        An interesting side note is that the 'criminals' depicted are all white and look somewhat suburban. There would be a lot more outrage if it were anything but.

        August 17, 2011 at 9:49 pm |
      • Tom in Santa Fe

        We do not live in a black-and-white world. The old belief of either live free OR under Governement control is outdated. DHS is not ideal, but we can not return to the discord that existed prior to it's inception. Its akin to browsing the web – do you do so with out the "protections" of Anti-Virus. Anti-Spam, Web Filters, etc? Do you just let your children run out in the street once they learn to walk/run without supervision? Live Free Or Die is a great belief to hold and cherrish and to teach our children. And it worked in a simple time when we all lived more simply. America and the World is no longer that simple. I am proud to be an American, I am proud to have the freedom and rights that I have, and I will fight to protect them regardless of where that threat originates. DHS is less of a threat than some of your children's school-mates. We just need to find the balance.

        August 17, 2011 at 9:58 pm |
      • rdizzle

        If you own a Mac you probably don't have antivirus software. And both kids in the country and the hood play in the street all day long without problems. You probably use windows and live in the suburbs.

        August 18, 2011 at 12:05 am |
      • Tater

        How many tax dollars does DHS give you per post Uncle Tom?

        August 18, 2011 at 12:51 am |
      • Jason L.

        Did you read what you just wrote? The vendor called FDNY/NYPD... he didn't call DHS. That plot would have been thwarted even if DHS didn't exist. Homeland security is NOT a joke... the DEPARTMENT of Homeland Security IS. Actually, it isn't a joke, it is a terrorist organization in disguise (their primary goal is to spread fear), and that is not funny.

        August 18, 2011 at 1:21 am |
  43. Gaithersburg, Maryland Police Reports For Public To Read Before Traveling.

    Maryland Community News

    --------------------------–
    Published: Wednesday, August 17, 2011
    Gaithersburg police reports
    The following is a summary of incidents in Gaithersburg to which the Montgomery County Police and/or Gaithersburg Police responded recently. The words “arrested” and “charged” do not imply guilt.

    Sixth district: 7/25/11 to 8/2/11

    Aggravated assault
    * On Aug. 1 at approximately 2 p.m. in the 18700 block of Nathan’s Place in Montgomery Village. Domestic-related. During an ongoing dispute with the victim, the suspect displayed a handgun and began shooting. The victim did not suffer injuries. Traces of blood were found on the scene, but no injured victim could be located. Suspect No. 1 was described as a black man, 5 feet 7 inches tall. Suspect No. 2 was described as a black man, 30-35, 5 feet 6 inches to 5 feet 8 inches tall, 185-200 pounds, balding.

    Sex offense
    * On July 29 between 8:45 p.m. and 9:04 p.m. in the 9200 block of Chadburn Place in Montgomery Village. Domestic-related.

    Vehicle theft
    * 8700 block of Ravenglass Way in Montgomery Village, between July 28 and July 29. Acura stolen, recovered on July 29 at the Montgomery Village Golf Course. All four wheels taken.
    * 9500 block of Briar Glen Way in Montgomery Village, between July 28 and July 29. Acura stolen, recovered on July 29 at the Montgomery Village Golf Course. All four wheels taken.
    * 500 block of Mandolin Court in Gaithersburg, between July 28 and July 29. Honda Accord stolen, recovered at the Montgomery Village Golf Course on July 29. All four wheels taken.
    * 18300 block of Streamside Drive in Gaithersburg, between July 27 and July 28. 2006 Suzuki Colt stolen.
    * 8200 block of Streamside Place in Gaithersburg, between July 28 and July 29. Vehicle recovered. All four wheels taken.

    Vehicle larceny
    * Chesley Knoll Court and Terrace in Gaithersburg, at approximately 4:35 a.m. July 26. Vehicles left unlocked, property taken. An arrest was made in these incidents after officers observed two suspects entering a vehicle on Chelsey Knoll Court. After a foot pursuit, an 18-year-old male from Silver Spring was arrested and property was recovered on his person. No further information on the second suspect.
    * 20400 block of Sawgrass Drive in Montgomery Village, at approximately 12:45 a.m. July 25. Vehicle left unlocked, GPS, wallet containing $10 in coins taken.
    * Goshen Plaza parking lot, 9100 Rothbury Drive between July 26 and July 27. Broken window on both vehicles; nothing taken.
    * 18500 block of Cherry Laurel Lane in Gaithersburg on July 31. The victim observed the suspect remove items from his vehicle. Suspect arrested at the scene.

    Commercial burglary
    * Diamond Veterinary Hospital, 17000 Long Draft Road in Gaithersburg, between July 30 and Aug. 1. Forced entry; medication taken.

    Residential burglary
    * 100 block of Spring Street in Gaithersburg, on Aug. 1. Entry gained; property taken.
    * 700 block of Quince Orchard Boulevard in Gaithersburg, at approximately 11:34 a.m. Aug. 2. Homeless suspect entered a foreclosed unit and was arrested on site.
    * Wayridge Court in Montgomery Village, between 1:30 a.m. and 6 a.m. July 28. No sign of forced entry; property taken. The vehicle key was taken and used to take the victim’s 2006 blue Honda Odyssey.
    * 8200 block of Ironclad Court in Gaithersburg, on July 25. No sign of forced entry; property taken.
    * 7700 block of Dew Wood Drive in Derwood, on July 29. Forced entry; property taken.

    © 2011 Post-Newsweek Media, Inc./Gazette.Net

    August 17, 2011 at 6:39 pm | Reply
    • Tom in Santa Fe

      Why was the "Gaithersburg, Maryland Police Reports For Public To Read Before Traveling" posted?

      August 17, 2011 at 9:03 pm | Reply
      • Richard

        Sorry Tom, but linking the necessity of the DHS to browsing the internet is a terrible comparison. The worst thing that can happen to your PC online is a virus or other software. For the worst potentials of the DHS look at Nazi Germany and Soviet Russia.

        I will agree that not everything is a black and white picture in the world, however the matter of liberty is absolutely black and white. To be citizens in a free society we must all be prepared and willing to fight and even die to protect these ideas. They are a concept far greater and important than your life or even my own for that matter, since these are ideas that get carried down through generations. By saying that this is a grey area you are distorting the truth of the debate, "do we live freely and open to attack at times, or do we allow government oppression of rights and liberties in order to afford some sense of safety?"

        The simple and truest answer is that we live the former and not the latter of these ideas.

        August 23, 2011 at 11:03 pm |
    • Wzrd1

      Nice SPAM. The story is about a national, federal agency.
      You post, TWICE, SPAM about a local police department.

      August 17, 2011 at 9:06 pm | Reply
  44. Montgomery County, Maryland Police Reports For Public To Read Before Traveling.

    Maryland Community News

    --------------------------–
    Published: Wednesday, August 17, 2011
    County police reports
    The following is a summary of incidents in Silver Spring/Wheaton to which Montgomery County police responded recently. The words "arrested" and "charged" do not imply guilt.

    Third district: 7/25/2011 to 8/2/2011

    Aggravated assault
    * On July 29 at 11:42 p.m. in the area of Ottawa Place and Highland Avenue in Silver Spring. Two victims were assaulted by the suspects who then fled. The suspects were described as two black males, 17-25, 5 feet 8 inches to 5 feet 10 inches tall, dreadlocks. The suspect vehicle was described as a silver four-door, with Maryland tags.

    Burglary/vandalism
    * Between 8 p.m. on July 29 and 11:15 a.m. on July 30. Pool area at the Montgomery White Oak Apartments, 11550 Stewart Lane in Silver Spring. Forced entry, nothing taken.

    Attempted armed robbery
    * On July 29 at 11:10 p.m. in the 12100 block of Cliftondale Drive in Silver Spring. The suspect threatened the victim with a weapon and obtained property. The suspect was described as a black male, 5 feet 11 inches tall, 165 pounds.

    Armed robbery
    * On July 29 at 12:50 a.m. in the 8500 block of Piney Branch Road in Silver Spring. The suspects threatened the victims with a weapon, obtained property then fled. The suspects were described as four Hispanic males, 25-30. The suspect vehicle was described as a four-door Dodge.

    Bank robbery
    * On Aug. 1 at 6:33 p.m. at TD Bank, 8661 Colesville Road in Silver Spring. The suspect announced the robbery, obtained cash, then fled.

    Commercial burglary
    * The Hillandale Swim Club, 515 Schindler Lane in Silver Spring, between 8:30 p.m. on July 28 and 10:30 a.m. on July 29. Forced entry, property taken.
    * Safford Auto, 3110 Automobile Blvd. in Silver Spring, between 7 p.m. on July 29, and 6:20 a.m. on July 30. Unknown entry to office, property taken.

    Residential burglary
    * 600 block of Deerfield Avenue in Silver Spring, between 10:30 a.m. and 2:30 p.m. on July 27. Forced entry, property taken.
    * 1100 block of East West Highway in Silver Spring, between 8:30 a.m. and 7:30 p.m. on July 26. Forced entry, property taken.
    * Unit block of Midhurst Road in Silver Spring, at 9:20 p.m. on July 27. Attempted forced entry, no entry gained.
    * Unit block of Devon Road in Silver Spring, between 8:45 a.m. and 5:04 p.m. on July 27. No forced entry, property taken.
    * 8600 block of Bradford Road in Silver Spring, between 8 p.m. and 9:10 p.m. on July 30. No forced entry, property taken.
    * 1500 block of Dilston Road in Silver Spring, between 9:30 a.m. and 10 p.m. on July 25. Unknown entry, property taken.
    * 11400 block of Stewart Lane in Silver Spring, at 6:52 a.m. on July 30. Unknown of entry, unknown if anything taken.

    Fourth district: 7/25/11 to 8/2/11

    Sex assault
    * On July 29, between 3 p.m. and 9:30 p.m. on Fairland Road in Silver Spring. Involving a juvenile victim.
    * On Aug. 1 at 6:50 p.m. inside the Unique Thrift Store, 12211 Veirs Mill Road in Wheaton. The suspect approached the seven year- old female victim two times and touched her over her clothing. The second time, the suspect stated, “Tickle, tickle.” The suspect was described as a Hispanic male, 20’s, average height, medium build.

    Armed robbery
    * On July 27 at 11:30 a.m. in the Wheaton Library, 11701 Georgia Ave. The suspect followed the victim into the library, then pointed a knife at him, and snatched his phone. The suspect fled north on Georgia on foot. A Blackberry taken. The suspect was described as a black male, 17-20 5 feet 6 inches to 5 feet 8 inches tall, 150-160 pounds, beard, crew cut.

    Strong-arm robbery
    * On Aug. 2 at 2:28 a.m. on Veirs Mill Road in Silver Spring. The adult male victim was on foot. The suspects approached the victim. One suspect displayed a knife. The other suspect punched the victim in the face and took his wallet.

    Strong-arm robbery/assault
    * On July 26 at 11:40 p.m. at Georgia Avenue and Shorefield Road in Wheaton. The adult male victim was on foot. The suspects approached the victim and asked to see his phone. The suspect handed over the phone. One suspect punched the victim in the face and all suspects ran toward Georgian Way. A Blackberry was taken.
    * On July 27 at 2:25 a.m. In the 2300 block of Georgian Way in Wheaton. An adult male was on foot. The suspects knocked the victim down and began kicking him. The suspect searched the victim’s pockets and took cash. The suspects were described as four black males wearing blue jeans and no shirts.

    Vehicle larceny
    * 4900 block of Butternut Drive, Butternut Court, 4500 and 4600 blocks of Dabney Drive, 14700 block of Janice Drive all in Rockville, overnight between July 25 and July 26. All vehicles left unlocked. Handgun, holster, flashlight, satellite radio, money, GPS units taken

    Residential burglary
    * 500 block of Scott Drive in Silver Spring, between 9 a.m. and 5:17 p.m. on July 27. Forced entry, property taken.
    * 34200 block of St. Augustine Court in Olney, between 1:45 p.m. and 7:15 p.m. on July 27. Forced entry, property taken.

    * 13200 block of Rippling Brook Drive in Silver Spring, between 8 a.m. and 6:45 p.m. on July 28. Forced entry, nothing taken.
    * 2300 block of Manor Spring Terrace in Silver Spring, overnight between July 27 and July 28. No forced entry to garage, property taken.
    * Unit block of Briggs Court in Silver Spring, between July 29 and July 31. Several individuals rent rooms in the house and the victim is involved in a dispute with the landlord. No forced entry, property taken.
    * 14200 block of Dennington Place in Rockville, at 3:30 p.m. on July 28. The victim was home and responded to a noise at the sliding door. The suspect was attempting to force the rear slider. When the suspect saw the victim he fled from the yard. The suspect was described as a Hispanic male, 22-27, 5 feet 6 inches tall, 185-190 pounds, short cropped hair, tattoo on left arm, wearing multi-colored bandana, red shirt, blue jeans, red sneakers.
    * 12100 block of Shorefield Road in Silver Spring, between noon and 4 p.m. on July 31. Forced entry, property taken.

    © 2011 Post-Newsweek Media, Inc./Gazette.Net

    August 17, 2011 at 6:36 pm | Reply
  45. rr

    Umm, why are white people always the perpetrators of terror in these videos? Are we preparing for a false flag attack blamed on white conservatives?

    August 17, 2011 at 5:35 pm | Reply
    • Truth Hurts

      Of course a false flag attack is on its way! A staged domestic terror attack is the ONLY way Omamba can win in 2012. All the writing is on the walls. The Vice President has called the Tea Party terrorists. The Tea Party (White Al-Qaeda) will be demonized by this event and Omamba will try to be seen as our savior once again! It's sick...

      August 17, 2011 at 8:37 pm | Reply
      • Wzrd1

        Do you mean that "peace loving" tea party that threatened "second amendment options" during the last election?
        That qualifies as terrorism, plain and simple.

        August 17, 2011 at 9:07 pm |
    • harmonynoyes

      " white" is such an extreme word

      August 17, 2011 at 9:32 pm | Reply

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