Harassment & Mind Games in Berlin

First of all, some Romanian claims to have evidence the (Russian?) hacker Guccifer knew about Snowden in advance. WTF? http://cryptome.org/2013/12/guccifer-archive.htm

Second of all, spend 5 minutes right now and watch this. It’s quite relevant to what I’m about to discuss — according to Scientology whistleblower Ken Ogger, the CIA was very closely connected with Scientology, particularly their internal security. (start at 17:22 if you’re downloading it because you don’t have Flash, like me) http://youtu.be/rJkQdLTJWwo?t=17m22s

Speaking to the Berliner Zeitung, Wikileaks “associate” and “guy who’s in contact with Snowden” Jake Appelbaum has detailed some of the crazy shit he’s experienced in the City of the Spies (and Enemies-of-the-State) that is Berlin.

(I should note before we go any further that — as he himself makes clear in the interview — what he describes is something of the ‘lite’ version. And I still think there’s something funny about the guy.)

Anyway, this isn’t new for him. Speaking to Democracy Now over a year ago, he described how the US government had ceaselessly interrogated and harassed him, particularly entering the country: “One guy cupped me in a particularly uncomfortable way. Another one held my wrists. They took my cellphones. I’m not really actually able to talk about what happened to those next.”

Worth noting: the harassment goes back to his days with Greenpeace and the Rainforest Action Network. (Greenpeace is interesting.)

The US government having somewhat less pull outside of that country, he seems to have experienced the obligatory quiet period of relief and apparent safety upon his move to Berlin… at least, until the relevant assets were organized.

Now he keeps a (pen and paper!) diary of the “strange things” that happen. Like two women that tried to enter his apartment, claiming the property management company had given them a key so they could check it out before renting. (Calling the property management company revealed it had issued no key and knew nothing.)

10 days later someone was messing with his door, at 3AM, and then the same six days after that.

Visitors have observed people in front of his building noting down who comes and goes. He’s heard people walking across the roof (though that happens in Berlin). And when he flew out of the country, he took precautions — installing four alarms.

Getting back, he found three had been disabled and the fourth had indeed observed someone in his apartment. Objects had been displaced, his computer rebooted, etc.

(Back in the US, his mother was interrogated under the influence of psychiatric drugs about his role in Wikileaks, and a friend of his in Boston was interrogated by the FBI after Appelbaum paid a visit prior to his final departure. His girlfriend broke up with him after she awoke in the middle of the night to find some dude watching her through the bedroom window with night vision glasses.)

As one commentator put it: “I feel shit just reading this. Imagine being the TARGET of such harrassment (by people, who, theoretically, have no qualms about murder), and still being able to laugh. Could you?” [1]

Anyway, Appelbaum’s analysis of the logic behind all this is more or less spot on. Leave no evidence, but make it clear “they” still “care” about him. The world famous examples in this regard were the Stasi, who called it “zersetzung.”

But, the Stasi weren’t the only ones. The West did plenty of “R&D” here too, from the earliest gaslighting to the “black dianetics”[2] of the video above.

The idea is twofold.

First, turn the person against themselves. Create conditioned reactions or psychological aberrations using mental judo, as the Scientologists did to the BBC reporter. Ultimately the goal is to either create a psychotic state (at which point, enter extra-special mind-bending under cover of treatment) or induce them to discredit themselves.

Second, occupy the person’s mind. One of the reasons you’re more productive if you have a clear desk and a completed to-do lists is we generally only have a fixed amount of attention to spread around. (there are ways to effectively expand this, but that’s outside the scope here.) A continual irritation makes people less productive and effective.

In this context, the following earlier observation of mine seems relevant. While I can’t be sure it’s perfect, it’s been, erm, thoroughly tested.

…you can create a fairly secure improvised seal by photographing a towel* from a precisely reproducible position. If you take a second photo sometime later, then use the in-camera crop fuction to make two zoomed-in copies of the photos, you can switch between the two and precisely tell whether or not the towel’s been disturbed. (the large, coarse fibers make it pretty clear.)

* particularly a towel wedged around a doorknob or cabinet handle. doorknobs come with handy door jambs opposite them which are wonderful for precisely placing the camera. And really any cloth works.

[1] https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=6947061

[2] The greatest irony here is that Hubbard may have undertaken the research that became Scientology because he was aware of the increasingly pervasive Anglo-American “mind control” efforts through his possible involvement in a British-American citizens’ spy group around WWII and wanted to create an antidote. (The core principles are about recovering repressed memories and such, which is exactly what you need.)

The forces behind such things being what they are, it’s evident he went over to the dark side fairly early. I think one commentator put the date around 1964, but it’s been way too long to quote that with any accuracy. Regardless, I should emphasize they’re not an “antidote” anymore!

Background:
http://www.democracynow.org/2012/4/20/we_do_not_live_in_a
http://www.democracynow.org/2013/6/17/long_before_helping_expose_nsa_spying

English summary:
http://www.dw.de/snowden-ally-appelbaum-claims-his-berlin-apartment-was-invaded/a-17315069

http://www.berliner-zeitung.de/spionage-skandal/jacob-appelbaum-zur-ueberwachung–eine-taktik-der-zersetzung-,23568638,25682272.html

(translate it yourself)

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