FBI program alleged to prepare businesses for martial law
Published: Friday February 8, 2008
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A public-private partnership program on infrastructure preparedness and protection run by the Federal Bureau of Investigation allegedly has briefed its corporate members on the possibility of martial law and the use of lethal force, according to an exclusive report in the magazine The Progressive.
"One business owner in the United States tells me that InfraGard members are being advised on how to prepare for a martial law situation—and what their role might be," writes Matthew Rothschild in the Feb. 7 report, quoting an anonymous whistleblower on the program. "'Then they said when—not if—martial law is declared, it was our responsibility to protect our portion of the infrastructure, and if we had to use deadly force to protect it, we couldn’t be prosecuted,' he says."
Rothschild's report details InfraGard, a program set up between the FBI and a number of businesses engaged in maintaining elements of "critical national infrastructure," such as agriculture, banking and finance, the chemical industry, defense, energy, food, information and telecommunications, law enforcement, public health, and transportation. The program's 23,000-plus members provide information to the FBI and in turn receive privileged information from the FBI on threats to infrastructure.
In one case, Rothschild expalined, InfraGard members appeared to get details on a threat to California's bridges prior to then-Gov. Gray Davis. The California governor was informed by his brother Barry, a banker, of the danger potentially faced by the state's residents.
"I was on the phone with my brother, who is an investment banker. And if he knows, why shouldn’t the public know?" Davis' former press secretary Steve Maviglio quotes the governor as saying, according to Rothschild.
The FBI called accusations of deputizing businesses to shoot-to-kill in emergency situations "ridiculous."
“If you want to quote a businessperson saying that, knock yourself out. If that’s what you want to print, fine," a spokeswoman for the bureau told Rothschild.
The full article can be read at the Progressive's website.