December 11, 2008
Ed. -Thanks for the 'Openness and Change' Obama, can you get any more closed minded and negative than this blatant act of RACISM???
(CNSNews.com) – An 18-year veteran of the National Council of La Raza (NCLR), who advocates for federal legislation to give the estimated 12 million illegal immigrants in the United States a path to citizenship, has been tapped for President-elect Barack Obama’s White House staff.
Cecilia Muñoz, who currently serves as Senior Vice President for the office of research, advocacy and legislation at the NCLR, will serve as director for intergovernmental affairs in the Obama administration.
“We’re continuing to build a White House team that can rise to the challenges facing this country,” Obama said when he announced the appointment of Muñoz last week.
“And I couldn’t be more excited to announce Cecilia. I’m confident that at a critical time in our history, this White House will restore openness and accountability to our Executive Branch and help to put government back in the hands of the people it serves,” Obama added.
In her new post, Muñoz will be responsible for managing relations between the Obama administration and state and local governments. She is a first-generation American whose parents came to the United States from Bolivia.
Muñoz, 46, said in an essay aired on National Public Radio on Sept. 26, 2005, that the anger sparked by what she considered a racist remark about Latinos made by a friend when she was 17 shaped her successful career as an immigration activist.
“My outrage that day became a propellant of my life, driving me straight to the civil rights movement, where I’ve worked ever since,” Muñoz said. “I guess outrage got me pretty far. I found jobs in the immigrant rights movement. I moved to Washington to work as an advocate. I found plenty to be angry about along the way and built something of a reputation for being strident.
“I’m deeply familiar with that hollow place that outrage (Blatant hatred for Americans) carves in your soul,” Muñoz said in the National Public Radio essay. “I’ve fed off it (the hatred) to sustain my work for many years.”
Bob Dane, spokesman for the Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR), told CNSNews.com that the director of intergovernmental affairs will play a critical role in the next administration, but it is a role that may be difficult for Muñoz to fulfill, given her background.
“Her direct and succinct affiliation with La Raza (The Race) taints her ability to represent the broader national interest,” Dane said. “La Raza exists as a way to systematically dismantle enforcement and any semblance of discipline in the immigration system. Are we to believe that she is going to distance herself in her new role to represent the broader national interest?”
Muñoz, who holds a bachelor’s degree in English and Latin American Studies from the University of Michigan and a master’s degree in Latin American Studies from the University of California, Berkeley, was an advocate for President Bush’s comprehensive immigration reform proposed in 2007.
At a speech at the University of Michigan’s Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy in March 2007, Muñoz spoke about how the public, including the media, did not understand the NCLR’s goal of economic equity and social justice for immigrants.
“My organization in particular gets challenged, especially in the media,” Muñoz said. “I’m not just taking about talk radio or Fox, but even CNN. We get portrayed as a radical, U.S.-hating, brown beret-wearing separatist organization hell-bent on retrieving the Southwest United States for Mexico, which is really silly (but what we REALLY WANT!).”
She said previous attempts at immigration reform in the United States failed because legislation took a “hostile’ approach to solving what Muñoz said is “one of the most important domestic policies of our time.”
She cited legislation passed in Hazelton, Pa., for example, which made renting property to illegal aliens against the law, and road blocks on Georgia highways “because local police had gotten into the business of immigration enforcement.”
“They thought, ‘If we round people up, if we make the climate hostile, undocumented immigrants will go away,” Muñoz said. “So if you happen to look Mexican and you’re driving down the highway in Georgia, you’re very likely to be picked up by these road blocks (GOOD!, maybe the rest of the country should take note).”
She said people were detained for days and even weeks because they couldn’t prove they were U.S. citizens.
Muñoz said she supported comprehensive immigration reform that required people who are in the United States illegally to come forward, prove they have no criminal record and are paying taxes, pay a fine, start to learn English, and then be put on a path to citizenship that would take about 10 years to complete.
“We’re not rewarding illegality,” Muñoz said. “We are asking (illegal immigrants) to earn something and we’re asking them to pay a fine. And then we need to move on (So then DENOUNCE your loyalty to the RACIST LA RAZA party!!.”
at 11:16 AM
December 01, 2008
The U.S. military expects to have 20,000 uniformed troops inside the United States by 2011 trained to help state and local officials respond to a nuclear terrorist attack or other domestic catastrophe, according to Pentagon officials.
The long-planned shift in the Defense Department's role in homeland security was recently backed with funding and troop commitments after years of prodding by Congress and outside experts, defense analysts said.
There are critics of the change, in the military and among civil liberties groups and libertarians who express concern that the new homeland emphasis threatens to strain the military and eliminate the Posse Comitatus Act, a 130-year-old federal law restricting the military's role in domestic law enforcement.
But the Bush administration and some in Congress have pushed for a heightened homeland military role since the middle of this decade, saying the greatest domestic threat is terrorists exploiting the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction.
Before the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, dedicating 20,000 troops to domestic response -- a nearly sevenfold increase in five years -- "would have been extraordinary to the point of unbelievable," Paul McHale, assistant defense secretary for homeland defense, said in remarks last month at the Center for Strategic and International Studies. But the realization that civilian authorities may be overwhelmed in a catastrophe prompted "a fundamental change in military culture," he said.
The Pentagon's plan calls for three rapid-reaction forces to be ready for emergency response by September 2011. The first 4,700-person unit, built around an active-duty combat brigade based at Fort Stewart, Ga., was available as of Oct. 1, said Gen. Victor E. Renuart Jr., commander of the U.S. Northern Command.
If funding continues, two additional teams will join nearly 80 smaller National Guard and reserve units made up of about 6,000 troops in supporting local and state officials nationwide. All would be trained to respond to a domestic chemical, biological, radiological, nuclear, or high-yield explosive attack, or CBRNE event, as the military calls it.
Military preparations for a domestic weapon-of-mass-destruction attack have been underway since at least 1996, when the Marine Corps activated a 350-member chemical and biological incident response force and later based it in Indian Head, Md., a Washington suburb. Such efforts accelerated after the Sept. 11 attacks, and at the time Iraq was invaded in 2003, a Pentagon joint task force drew on 3,000 civil support personnel across the United States.
In 2005, a new Pentagon homeland defense strategy emphasized "preparing for multiple, simultaneous mass casualty incidents." National security threats were not limited to adversaries who seek to grind down U.S. combat forces abroad, McHale said, but also include those who "want to inflict such brutality on our society that we give up the fight," such as by detonating a nuclear bomb in a U.S. city.
In late 2007, Deputy Defense Secretary Gordon England signed a directive approving more than $556 million over five years to set up the three response teams, known as CBRNE Consequence Management Response Forces. Planners assume an incident could lead to thousands of casualties, more than 1 million evacuees and contamination of as many as 3,000 square miles, about the scope of damage Hurricane Katrina caused in 2005.
Last month, McHale said, authorities agreed to begin a $1.8 million pilot project funded by the Federal Emergency Management Agency through which civilian authorities in five states could tap military planners to develop disaster response plans. Hawaii, Massachusetts, South Carolina, Washington and West Virginia will each focus on a particular threat -- pandemic flu, a terrorist attack, hurricane, earthquake and catastrophic chemical release, respectively -- speeding up federal and state emergency planning begun in 2003.
Last Monday, Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates ordered defense officials to review whether the military, Guard and reserves can respond adequately to domestic disasters.
Gates gave commanders 25 days to propose changes and cost estimates. He cited the work of a congressionally chartered commission, which concluded in January that the Guard and reserve forces are not ready and that they lack equipment and training.
Bert B. Tussing, director of homeland defense and security issues at the U.S. Army War College's Center for Strategic Leadership, said the new Pentagon approach "breaks the mold" by assigning an active-duty combat brigade to the Northern Command for the first time. Until now, the military required the command to rely on troops requested from other sources.
"This is a genuine recognition that this [job] isn't something that you want to have a pickup team responsible for," said Tussing, who has assessed the military's homeland security strategies.
The American Civil Liberties Union and the libertarian Cato Institute are troubled by what they consider an expansion of executive authority that threatens the welfare and rights of the entire population of the United States.
at 7:06 PM