The Biden regime is reportedly using the law enforcement arm of the U.S. Postal Service to surveil social media posts of Americans who don’t support Joe Biden.
A document obtained by Yahoo News reveals that the Post Office “has been quietly running a program that tracks and collects Americans’ social media posts, including those about planned protests.”
The previously unknown surveillance program is called iCOP, or the Internet Covert Operations Program, Yahoo reported.
The political espionage reportedly involves having “analysts trawl through social media sites to look for what the document describes as “inflammatory” postings and then sharing that information across government agencies.”
“Analysts with the United States Postal Inspection Service (USPIS) Internet Covert Operations Program (iCOP) monitored significant activity regarding planned protests occurring internationally and domestically on March 20, 2021,”a March 16 government bulletin said. “Locations and times have been identified for these protests, which are being distributed online across multiple social media platforms, to include right-wing leaning Parler and Telegram accounts.”
The bulletin was marked as “law enforcement sensitive” and distributed through the Department of Homeland Security’s fusion centers, according to Yahoo.
A number of groups were expected to gather in cities around the globe on March 20 as part of a World Wide Rally for Freedom and Democracy, to protest everything from lockdown measures to 5G. “Parler users have commented about their intent to use the rallies to engage in violence. Image 3 on the right is a screenshot from Parler indicating two users discussing the event as an opportunity to engage in a ‘fight’ and to ‘do serious damage,’” says the bulletin.
“No intelligence is available to suggest the legitimacy of these threats,” it adds.
The bulletin includes screenshots of posts about the protests from Facebook, Parler, Telegram and other social media sites. Individuals mentioned by name include one alleged Proud Boy and several others whose identifying details were included but whose posts did not appear to contain anything threatening.
“iCOP analysts are currently monitoring these social media channels for any potential threats stemming from the scheduled protests and will disseminate intelligence updates as needed,” the bulletin says.
The government’s monitoring of Americans’ social media is the subject of ongoing debate inside and outside government, particularly in recent months, following a rise in domestic unrest. While posts on platforms such as Facebook and Parler have allowed law enforcement to track down and arrest rioters who assaulted the Capitol on Jan. 6, such data collection has also sparked concerns about the government surveilling peaceful protesters or those engaged in protected First Amendment activities.
“This isn’t about targeting all Americans,” conservative columnist Lee Smith explained on One America News Network on Friday. “It’s about targeting a very particular subset of Americans, a very large subset of Americans, and those happen to be—you could look at it two ways—people who voted for Donald Trump, or people who did not vote for Joe Biden to be president.”
He stressed that the Biden Regime is specifically going after right-of-center Americans they’ve relabeled as “domestic terrorists,” “white nationalists,” or “white supremacists” in a “very specific campaign.”
Civil liberties experts contacted by Yahoo News also expressed alarm at the post office’s espionage program.
“It’s a mystery,” said University of Chicago law professor Geoffrey Stone, who was appointed by former President Obama to review the National Security Agency’s bulk data collection in the wake of the Edward Snowden leaks. “I don’t understand why the government would go to the Postal Service for examining the internet for security issues.”
“I just don’t think the Postal Service has the degree of sophistication that you would want if you were dealing with national security issues of this sort,” he said.
“That part is puzzling,” he added. “There are so many other federal agencies that could do this, I don’t understand why the post office would be doing it. There is no need for the post office to do it — you’ve got FBI, Homeland Security and so on, so I don’t know why the post office is doing this.”
Another liberal, Rachel Levinson-Waldman, deputy director of the Brennan Center for Justice’s liberty and national security program, questioned the legal authority of the Postal Service to monitor social media activity.
“This seems a little bizarre,” Levinson-Waldman said. “Based on the very minimal information that’s available online, it appears that [iCOP] is meant to root out misuse of the postal system by online actors, which doesn’t seem to encompass what’s going on here. It’s not at all clear why their mandate would include monitoring of social media that’s unrelated to use of the postal system.”
She added: “If the individuals they’re monitoring are carrying out or planning criminal activity, that should be the purview of the FBI,” she said. “If they’re simply engaging in lawfully protected speech, even if it’s odious or objectionable, then monitoring them on that basis raises serious constitutional concerns.”
The U.S. Postal Inspection Service sent a general statement to Yahoo News in response the the outlet’s inquiries.
“The U.S. Postal Inspection Service is the primary law enforcement, crime prevention, and security arm of the U.S. Postal Service,” the statement said. “As such, the U.S. Postal Inspection Service has federal law enforcement officers, Postal Inspectors, who enforce approximately 200 federal laws to achieve the agency’s mission: protect the U.S. Postal Service and its employees, infrastructure, and customers; enforce the laws that defend the nation’s mail system from illegal or dangerous use; and ensure public trust in the mail.”
“The Internet Covert Operations Program is a function within the U.S. Postal Inspection Service, which assesses threats to Postal Service employees and its infrastructure by monitoring publicly available open source information,” the statement said.
“Additionally, the Inspection Service collaborates with federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies to proactively identify and assess potential threats to the Postal Service, its employees and customers, and its overall mail processing and transportation network. In order to preserve operational effectiveness, the U.S. Postal Inspection Service does not discuss its protocols, investigative methods, or tools.”
OANN host Natalie Harp marveled at how quickly the Biden regime moved against its political enemies once taking office.
“We really are turning into a surveillance state under the Biden administration, and we’re just in the first 100 days,” Harp noted, asking Smith, “How quickly do you see America turning into a dictatorship where we’re all going to be targets just as President Trump was?”
Smith replied that this seems to be precisely what is happening.
“Under the Trump administration, the executive branch agencies, the FBI, large parts of the CIA, and large parts of other intelligence agencies, were focused on Trump, and the weapon they were using was at first the ‘collusion’ weapon,” he explained. “So we’ve gone from faking a collusion narrative to now faking a sedition narrative.”
Smith cited the reporting of American Greatness columnist Julie Kelly, who has been documenting the Biden DOJ’s draconian measures against rioters and even mere trespassers who allegedly “stormed the Capitol” on January 6.
“They’ve been holding people basically accused of trespassing—of misdemeanor offenses—on January 6. They’ve been holding them without bail,” he pointed out. “If you want to ask how quickly this is moving toward despotism, there’s evidence that we’re moving very very quickly.”
Smith said that partisan malefactors in the government are feeling emboldened for two reasons.
The first, he explained, is because very few Republican officials are going after them. He pointed out that former President Trump is the only person who has spoken out against the persecution of his supporters.
“In the Senate and the House, there are very few people who are stepping up for Republicans, for conservatives, who are being targeted like this.” Smith noted. The other reason, he said, was because “there were no consequences paid for the collusion operation.”
Special Counsel John Durham is allegedly still investigating the Russia hoax, but two full years into the probe, the patience of Trump supporters is wearing thin.
“This was not just a secret, clandestine operation with five or six people in the know and top FBI agents, this was a beltway-wide operation targeting the America First president, and therefore targeting America first voters.,” Smith pointed out.
“It’s shameful and shocking. And what makes it even more shameful and shocking is that as of yet, no one has paid any price for what they did beginning in 2016 with this collusion conspiracy,” he lamented. “They’re the ones that conspired. That’s the scandal. Not anything Donald Trump did.”