Thursday, August 07, 2008
A free press can be good or bad, but, most certainly, without freedom a press will never be anything but bad. ~Albert Camus
An Open Letter by Mike Whitney
My friend Tom Feeley is in Big trouble. He runs the web site informationclearinghouse.info which updates “news you won’t find in the corporate media” every day. The site is strongly anti-war.
Tom has gotten his share of death threats over the years, but what happened this week is a lot more serious.
Two days ago, Tom’s wife found three well dressed men in their kitchen. The man who did all the talking, told Tom’s wife (I won’t give her name) that Tom must “Stop what he is doing on the Internet, NOW!” As crazy as it sounds, he pulled back his lapel and showed her a gun of some kind which she could not identify. Like I said, Tom has been threatened before, but nothing like this. Four years ago, he was in a parking lot at Long’s Drug store in Southern California and when he tried to open his door to get out, a man in a car next to him opened his door at precisely the same time which prevented Tom from getting out. Then, a 40-ish year old man got out of the passenger side of the vehicle and approached Tom saying, “You need to stop what you are doing on the web”.
Tom said the man was overweight and had his shirt untucked. Tom was taken aback, but (after collecting himself said) “What the fuck? Who do you think you are telling me what I can do?”
The man answered, “Tom, I’m just giving you some good advice. You should take my advice, Tom.”
This is all I know about the incident. Since, then, there have been occassional death threats, but nothing like what happened on Sunday. Tom’s wife is hysterical and has not returned to the house since the incident. She contacted the FBI but the FBI said there was nothing they could do. Tom and his wife separated recently after a 30 year marriage, so he is publishing from a different location.
The well-dressed man told Tom’s wife that he knew where her son lived, what line of work he was in, and how many children he had.
Last night, Tom’s son and a friend cruised the neighborhood where his mother lives to see if anything strange was going on. They came across two men in a car a half-block from their mother’s home using their laptops at roughly 12:30 AM. When Tom’s son and friend approached them, the car sped off. Tom, does not know whether this is connected to his situation, but it is definitely suspicious.
I talked to Tom this morning and he is getting by, but he’s clearly upset. I do not know his plans, but I know he is ditching his cell phone and (I assume) will have to go underground as much as possible. He plans to keep publishing.
I’ll tell you this about Tom Feeley; he is no bullshitter. He is the “real deal” and completely committed to exposing the mob that is presently running our country. He does not understand why, (as he says) “They are reaching down SO far to get someone who just runs [a] web site”. But, the truth is, they are. Someone wants him to “shut up” and they apparently have the muscle to do it. He knows he is in danger.
I will probably only hear from Tom infrequently from this point on. But I will update information as I get it. Tom, knows some of the best writers on the Internet—many of them speak out regularly and forcefully on issues of civil liberties and war. Anything they can do to draw attention to Tom’s situation will greatly improve his chances of getting through this ordeal safely. Beyond that, I have no idea of what can be done to help.—MW
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