Pentagon Scraps Anti-Terror Database
Posted Aug 22, 2007 7:36 AM CST
By Debra Cassens Weiss
The Pentagon is pulling the plug on an anti-terrorism database criticized for tracking information on peace activists.
Army Col. Gary Keck, a Pentagon spokesman, said the database was being shut down because its analytical value had declined, the Associated Press reports. The data will be transferred to the FBI’s Guardian reporting system, according to Military Times.
The database, known as Talon, was created to collect information on potential threats to military bases and personnel. NBC reported on the effort in a December 2005 report called, “Is the Pentagon spying on Americans?” It said Talon was tracking more than 1,500 domestic groups, including a small group of activists planning to protest military recruitment at high schools.
Anthony Romero, executive director of the American Civil Liberties Union, said he was glad to see the end of Talon. "It was high time for this program to be shut down," he told AP. "There should be no place in a free democratic society for the military to be accumulating secret data on peaceful demonstrators exercising their First Amendment rights."