License-plate readers developed to monitor traffic in Iraqi cities are now being used to track drivers here at home and to compile databases of our movements. The colossally wasteful JLENS surveillance blimps outside Baltimore were initially designed to hover over Kabul, Afghanistan.

The same airborne surveillance tools used in Iraq and Afghanistan have been deployed by the FBI to spy on lawful public gatherings in Baltimore, Milwaukee and other cities. Even the gear and tactics that law enforcement agencies use these days are copied directly from the war zone – such as the Department of Homeland Security’s “forward operating bases” in the border areas of the Southwest.

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