7 Updates
South Asians aghast at Pentagon depiction of community
Photo Credit: PAUL J. RICHARDS, Getty Images

South Asians aghast at Pentagon depiction of community

Aug 21 2013, 5:52am CDT | by IANS

Washington, Aug 21 (IANS) South Asians in America have reacted with a sense of outrage at a US Defence Department online security training test that profiles a fictional Indian-American woman as a potential "high threat" and having "divided loyalty" just because she disagrees with US foreign policy.

Washington, Aug 21 — South Asians in America have reacted with a sense of outrage at a US Defence Department online security training test that profiles a fictional Indian-American woman as a...

Filed under: news

YouTube Videos

 
 
 

48 weeks ago

South Asians aghast at Pentagon depiction of community

Aug 21 2013, 5:52am CDT | by IANS

Washington, Aug 21 (IANS) South Asians in America have reacted with a sense of outrage at a US Defence Department online security training test that profiles a fictional Indian-American woman as a potential "high threat" and having "divided loyalty" just because she disagrees with US foreign policy.

Washington, Aug 21 — South Asians in America have reacted with a sense of outrage at a US Defence Department online security training test that profiles a fictional Indian-American woman as a potential "high threat" and having "divided loyalty" just because she disagrees with US foreign policy.

One of the training slides created by the Defence Information Systems Agency (DISA) asks employees to consider a hypothetical "Hema" a "high threat" because she frequently visits family abroad, has money troubles and "speaks openly of unhappiness with US foreign policy.

"Based on statements, this employee demonstrates divided loyalty. Paired with her financial difficulties and foreign travel, she is a high threat," says the programme for Defence Department and other federal employees by way of explanation.

Versions of the "Cyber Awareness Challenge" are unclassified and available for anyone to play online. "Catch me if you can," the training dares.

And if you fail the test by not identifying Hema as a 'threat', as this IANS correspondent did, the fictional female spy calls back and says with a chuckle: "You were too slow. I'll think of that as I enjoy a drink on the beach."

Reacting to the offending programme after it was first reported by Huffington Post, editors from a South Asian news and culture website wrote "As you can imagine, reading that line caused all of us here in The Aerogram's headquarters to have a 'Hey! That sounds like me!' moment."

Noting that the Post article suggested that the training was designed to help catch future Bradley Mannings and Edward Snowdens, who are both white men, they wrote: "We think the training would have been much more true-to-life if Hema had been the child of a Welsh immigrant a la Manning."

Examining the slides, Aerogram editors said they "were struck by the fact that a character that regularly plays high-stakes poker was considered less of a threat than Hema, and that Hema's propensity of travel made her as much of a risk as a recently divorced man mired in debt who openly worries about paying child support."

"Hema's foreign travel, the slide notes, is a threat because it "gives foreign agents a chance to contact foreign intelligence services."

"For us, the strangest part of seeing someone like the fictional Hema classified as a high risk threat is that travelling internationally, exercising the rights to free speech and having political opinions are generally indicators of a well-rounded, actively involved citizen," they wrote.

"Couldn't the government use more inspired young people who know that the world is a big and complicated place? Why are these traits considered undesirable and threatening when the person possessing them is a South Asian American woman?" they asked.

A blog post on the South Asian Journalists Association (SAJA) forum cited Tanzila Ahmed, a Bangladeshi-American activist, as saying that the defence department "was fortunate to have South Asian Americans working in the federal government as it doesn't always treat the South Asian and Muslim community judicially."

The HuffPost described the Hema' slide as "a startling demonstration of the Obama administration's obsession with leakers and other 'insider threats'" and cited Steven Aftergood, an expert on government secrecy at the Federation of American Scientists, as branding it "ignorant and clumsy".

Speaking openly of unhappiness with US foreign policy "is not a threat indicator", he wrote in an email to HuffPost.

"It could apply to most members of Congress, if not to most Americans. By presenting the matter this way, the slide suggests that overt dissent is a security concern. That is an error."

(Arun Kumar can be contacted at arun.kumar@ians.in)

IANS

Source: IANS

 
Update
7

4 days ago

Cut people or change how they're paid

Jul 23 2014 5:00am CDT | Source: TheHill

Hagel And Dempsey Hold Press Briefing At The Pentagon
The Pentagon and Congress have another tool at their disposal instead of layoffs ...
Source: TheHill   Full article at: TheHill
 

 
Update
6

1 week ago

Contingency Funds Support Operations, Recovery, New Missions

Jul 16 2014 12:00am CDT | Source: U.S. Department of Defense

Hagel And Dempsey Hold Press Briefing At The Pentagon
The Pentagon's request for $58.6 billion in fiscal year 2015 overseas contingency operations funds marks a continued downward in war-related spend ...
Source: U.S. Department of Defense   Full article at: U.S. Department of Defense
 

 
Update
5

6 weeks ago

Pentagon identifies soldier killed in airstrike

Jun 14 2014 8:48pm CDT | Source: Townhall's

Hagel And Dempsey Hold Press Briefing At The Pentagon
WASHINGTON (AP) — The Defense Department is releasing the name of the fifth American soldier who died last Monday in what ...
Source: Townhall's   Full article at: Townhall's
 

 
Update
4

7 weeks ago

Pentagon: Bergdahl's health improving daily

Jun 5 2014 10:52am CDT | Source: Townhall's

Hagel And Dempsey Hold Press Briefing At The Pentagon
WASHINGTON (AP) — A Pentagon spokesman says former military captive Bowe Bergdahl's health is improving daily, and he is resting mo ...
Source: Townhall's   Full article at: Townhall's
 

 
Update
3

7 weeks ago

White House Delays Pentagon Plan to Allow Certain Illegal Immigrants to Serve in Military

Jun 2 2014 2:26pm CDT | Source: Big Government

Washington v USC
The White House has requested the Pentagon delay a plan that would allow some illegal immigrants the ability to service in the military and be put on a path to citizenship, according to The New York Times and the Associated Press. According to the reports, the postponement is intended to give Congress time to pass immigration reform before August recess. "The president is convinced there is a legislative opportunity, and that gives us the best opportunity to fix wh ...
Source: Big Government   Full article at: Big Government
 

 
Update
1

7 weeks ago

White House Wants Delay In Defense Department Immigration Plan

Jun 2 2014 10:37am CDT | Source: Politics - The Huffington Post

Washington v USC
WASHINGTON (AP) — The White House has asked the Department of Defense to delay a plan that would allow some immigrants who entered the U.S. illegally as children to obtain a limited path to citizenship by serving in the military. The decision to postpone the narrowly drawn proposal is part of the White House effort to put off any immigration-related executive actions until August in the hope that House Republicans act on legislation to overhaul the immigration system i ...
Source: Politics - The Huffington Post   Full article at: Politics - The Huffington Post
 

 

Don't miss ...

 

blog comments powered by Disqus

Latest stories

Twin blasts in Nigeria kill five
Abuja, July 28 (IANS) At least five people were killed in two bomb blasts in Nigeria's Kano city, a mainly Christian area, Sunday afternoon, police said.
 
 
Australia gives $5 mn for Gaza relief
Sydney, July 28 (IANS) The Australian government is providing five million Australian dollars (4.7 million US dollars) in urgent humanitarian assistance to Gaza, Foreign Minister Julie Bishop announced Monday.
 
 
France wants expatriates to leave Libya
Paris, July 28 (IANS) French government Sunday called on all its nationals to quit Libya, "given the deteriorating security situation" prevailing in the African country.
 
 
Israel denies responsibility for UN school attack deaths
Jerusalem, July 28 (IANS) The Israeli army Sunday denied responsibility for the deaths of 16 Palestinians during Thursday's attack on a UN school in northern Gaza.
 
 
 

Latest from the Network

Twin blasts in Nigeria kill five
Abuja, July 28 (IANS) At least five people were killed in two bomb blasts in Nigeria's Kano city, a mainly Christian area, Sunday afternoon, police said. The first blast occurred under a bridge in the Sabon Gari...
Read more on Politics Balla
 
Australia gives $5 mn for Gaza relief
Sydney, July 28 (IANS) The Australian government is providing five million Australian dollars (4.7 million US dollars) in urgent humanitarian assistance to Gaza, Foreign Minister Julie Bishop announced Monday. The...
Read more on Politics Balla
 
France wants expatriates to leave Libya
Paris, July 28 (IANS) French government Sunday called on all its nationals to quit Libya, "given the deteriorating security situation" prevailing in the African country. "All our nationals are invited to get in touch...
Read more on Politics Balla
 
Israel denies responsibility for UN school attack deaths
Jerusalem, July 28 (IANS) The Israeli army Sunday denied responsibility for the deaths of 16 Palestinians during Thursday's attack on a UN school in northern Gaza. "The inquiry as well as documented footage conclude...
Read more on Politics Balla
 
India lose badminton semi-final to England 3-0
Glasgow, July 28 (IANS) India lost to England 3-0 in the semi-finals of the badminton competition at the Commonwealth Games here late Sunday night. India's men's and mixed doubles teams fought well over three games,...
Read more on Sport Balla
 
Danielle O'Hara's husband accused of cheating
London, July 28 (IANS) Model Danielle O'Hara's footballer husband Jamie accused of cheating on her with a nightclub blonde. The news has surfaced just days after she unveiled a tattoo dedicated to her husband. Mirror....
Read more on Celebrity Balla
 
CWG: India knocked out by England in badminton
Glasgow, July 28 (IANS) India were knocked out of badminton semi-finals 0-3 by England, who will now play for gold against Malaysia, who struggled their way past Singapore 3-2 at the Commonwealth Games here. England...
Read more on Sport Balla
 
Real Madrid coach rules out another striker
Madrid, July 28 (IANS) Real Madrid coach Carlo Ancelotti has for the moment ruled out adding another striker to his star-packed squad. Speaking after his side's 1-1 draw against Inter Milan in California, which ended...
Read more on Sport Balla
 
Ricciardo wins F1 Hungarian Grand Prix
Budapest, July 28 (IANS) Red Bull driver Daniel Ricciardo of Australia, in his rookie year on the F-1 circuit, won the Hungarian Grand Prix Sunday. He managed to slide by Ferrari's Fernando Alonso (Spain) who finished...
Read more on Sport Balla
 
UN chief appeals Israelis, Palestinians to extend truce
United Nations, July 28 (IANS) UN Secretary-General Ban Ki- moon Sunday urged "in the strongest terms" both the Israelis and Palestinians to extend, for an additional 24 hours, the humanitarian ceasefire that was in...
Read more on Politics Balla