Spread Disinformation, Sow Confusion

METLIFE-STADIUM-SUPER-BOWLSuper Bowl XLVIII is less than a week away.  The game’s being played in New Jersey, but all of the spotlight will be on New York.  The Super Bowl Boulevard is located in the Times Square section of Manhattan but kickoff is set for 6:30 PM in the town of East Rutherford.  Still confused?  I would hope not.


But if you have an interest in the bigger issues… false flags, foreseeable conspiracies and the future trajectory of technology vs. mankind, please continue reading.

As expected, the level of security for Super Bowl 48 will be unprecedented.

Some excerpts from a recent NBC News report:

This Super Bowl, says Ed Hartnett, former head of the New York Police Department’s Intelligence Unit, “truly defines the word ‘challenge’ when it comes to security.”

There is no intelligence indicating that terrorists have targeted the game or related events, but Hartnett says that doesn’t mean that threats don’t exist: “I would list them in priority order being a suicide bomber, a vehicle laden with explosives and a mass shooter or mass shooters similar to the Kenyan mall, or the Mumbai incidents,” he said. His concerns are echoed by law enforcement officials overseeing the game.

The above statement reflects the most obvious concern: conventional weaponry.  As a result, security personnel will utilize barriers, expand perimeters and visually monitor geographic locations.

The documents also discuss an emerging threat: computer hacking.  Could criminals use a cyber-attack to hit the infrastructure and control systems for the game?  While not considered likely, officials recall what an accidental blackout did to last year’s game.  Many of the key players in developing this year’s security plan attended the game in New Orleans and learned from the Superdome outage, which delayed the game for 34 minutes early in the third quarter.

It would appear the prospect of “hacking” is officially on the table.  Yet the ramifications of a cyber-attack seem narrowly focused on infrastructure related issues.

Lieutenant Colonel Edward Cetnar of the New Jersey State Police is the man in charge of security at the game itself.  His task as incident commander is to make sure the matchup between the Seattle Seahawks and Denver Broncos goes off without a hitch.  That requires planning for a triple threat: “Everything that we’re doing has an air, land and sea concept,” he said.

“Air, land, and sea.”  Once again, this echoes a time-honored, established pattern of thinking.  A predictable approach like this appears geared more toward the allocation of financial resources.  Major budgetary decisions appear grounded in familiarity and precedent.

Law enforcement is also concerned that “hacktivists” – hackers with social or political aims — could exploit social media to “spread disinformation, sow confusion.

This seems to be the only public mention of compromised emergency evacuation protocol.  It is the sole acknowledgement of any concern regarding the potential for an artificially generated stampede.  And at best, it’s incredibly vague.

“Spread disinformation” — Is this about manipulating the line in Vegas?  Is it about intentionally trying to deceive NFL statisticians?

“Sow confusion” — Confuse who exactly?  The coaching personnel?  The players on the field?  The officiating crew?

Let me explain.

“Spreading disinformation and sowing confusion” is a subliminal inference directed at the media and stadium occupants.  But there’s nothing subtle about it.  Super Bowl 48 is the biggest televised event in the United States.  East Rutherford, NJ has a population of roughly 8,000.  On game day, it burgeons to 10x that number.  80,000+ individuals in a tightly restricted area covering 1/15 mile.  Sunday’s game has been designated by the Department of Homeland Security as a Tier 1 event.  Offering obscure hints and cloaked innuendo about spectator safety is unacceptable.

What’s truly frustrating here is the utter lack of “out-of-the-box” thinking.  Spending millions upon millions in the name of heightened security but failing to acknowledge the simplest aspect of tactical awareness.  People deserve to be cognizant of the fact that legitimate evacuation orders do not originate from cell phones.  Not just in NFL stadiums, but anywhere a large, confined crowd gathers (outdoor amphitheaters, state fairs, arenas, political conventions, motor speedways, mega-churches, shopping malls, etc.).  This is an inevitable civil rights issue.  Denial of information this blatantly apparent is worse than rescinding the knowledge of “stop, drop and roll” or “look both ways before you cross the street.”

Just ask the Super Bowl’s incident commander, Edward Cetnar.  He’ll confirm everything I’ve written.  Although I imagine he’d be more succinct.

As one further reflects, it becomes painfully ironic.  Here we’ve assembled the nation’s top security experts, military personnel with the highest accolades, dedicated law enforcement, the finest emergency responders — and still, nobody is willing to ask the most obvious question.

Maybe if it was posed by a young child…

Instead of shouting “fire” in a crowded theater, what if someone texts “bomb” in a crowded stadium?

Of course, it’s a little more complicated and technologically all-encompassing.  But that is the basic essence.

What if Met Life Stadium fell victim to a virtual saturation of bomb threats, i.e., a “viral blitzkrieg?”  What happens when large numbers of attendees simultaneously begin receiving evacuation orders and/or panic-inducing information via their wireless devices?  Now add the ingredient of heightened paranoia due to the extreme security measures already in effect.  And toss in a crowd that’s completely oblivious.  All the security in the world cannot squelch, suppress or inhibit the human emotion of fear.  It’s just that simple.

NFL Chief Information Officer Michelle McKenna Doyle recently said, “Our hope is that this is the most connected live event in sports history.”

And therein lies the paradox.  For if you acknowledge this incredibly generic concept, this black hole of societal awareness — then it is you who will bear the burden of consequence.  If disaster strikes, those in positions of authority will ultimately be held accountable.  It’s just the same old blame game, but with an inhuman, cold-blooded catch-22.

Perhaps my expectations are too imposing.  Is the United States government or the National Football League actually capable of being proactive?  Is this asking too much?  Would either institution really be willing to address this transformational issue?  Maybe the Super Bowl is too grand a stage.  I just wish someone (other than myself) would be bold enough to ask the question.

In the January 28, 2014 State of the Union Address, President Barack Obama stated, “Our security cannot depend on our military alone.”  I concur.  He may have been referencing foreign policy abroad, but the domestic implications have never been more time-sensitive.