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Sunday, June 23, 2013

The REAL story

Although I haven't much time to write, I must register an ongoing disgust with this kind of tripe. It's as though everyone in the media has been given orders to demonize Ed Snowden, while doing everything possible to distract us from the things he has said.

Most of our pseudo-journalists have decided that Snowden is a bad guy because he didn't work within the system. They refuse to recognize that those NSA whistleblowers who did go that route found themselves on the receiving end of more sheer shit than any human being should ever have to deal with. How can you ask someone to work within the system when he is trying to warn you that the system has become a nightmare?

Here's the real story, folks: It just doesn't matter whether or not the NSA minimizes information on American citizens. The big secret our news media won't tell you is that our intelligence apparat works hand in glove with the UK's. Their version of the NSA is called GCHQ. Just as we have no laws against spying on Brits, they have no laws against spying on Americans. They have their Prism and we have ours.

GCHQ routinely shares information on American citizens with the CIA, NSA and FBI. Routinely. Automatically.

So who's kidding whom?

The link above goes to Craig Murray's column. These quotes deserve study, not skimming:
I am astonished that still none of our pusillanimous media has published the simple fact that NSA and GCHQ share ALL intelligence reports with each other. Every member of the House of Commons who has ever been in the most junior ministerial position knows this – that amounts to hundreds. So do at least fifty thousand current or retired civil service and military personnel. So do the majority of senior journalists.
“Once such data is in the hands of the US authorities, there is no clear legal framework that prevents it from being shared with UK authorities. The Security Service Act 1989 and the Intelligence Services Act 1994 place MI5, MI6 and GCHQ on a statutory basis, and permit those bodies to receive any information from foreign agencies in the ‘proper discharge’ of their statutory functions.

“Under that broad principle, UK agencies may receive and examine data from the US about UK citizens without having to comply with any of the legal requirements they would have to meet if the same agencies had tried to gather that information themselves.”
In fact GCHQ do not have to ask, and NSA do not have specifically to initiate. US citizens are included in the UK Prism operation, and UK citizens are included in the US Prism operation, and the swapping of resulting intelligence reports is an automatic process. So the UK takes the view it is not breaching the guidelines about spying on its own citizens as it is not REQUESTING the NSA to do anything, and vice versa.
One of Murray's readers seems to have a background in British intelligence. His words have the ring of truth:
It is not exaggerated in the least. GHCQ and MI6 share all intelligence reports, and so do MI6 and the CIA. I saw such reports every day of my working life for 20 years, so I can assure you I perfectly well know of what I speak.

When you receive the reports, signal intelligence (SIGINT) from GCHQ and NSA is covered in a blue jacket, human intelligence (HUMINT) from MI6 and CIA is in a red jacket. The only way you can tell US from UK intelligence is by the numeric code indicator at the start of the report. The format is precisely the same.
This has been going on quite a while, of course. The following comes from David Leigh's excellent 1988 book The Wilson Plot:
In 1947, the highly classified UKUSA treaty arranged by Atlee and Bevin re-launched a worldwide signals intelligence collection system. Britain and the U.S. would pool everything between them, both the work and the Intelligence 'product'. Australia, Canada and later New Zealand would join in, but with less access.
The 1947 agreement was all about cables, not telephone calls; nevertheless, that's when the great "intel swap" system began. When are our journalists going to wipe that brown off their noses and start telling us what's really going on?
Anyone who saw Meet the Press yesterday morning was witness to what has truly happened to the national press. Gregory asked Greenwald why he shouldn't be brought up on charges for aiding and abetting Snowden.

The journalist indicting the journalist.

Of course the implication is that Greenwald is decidedly 'not' a journalist, merely a lawyer/activist who is willing to dig for information and expose unAmerican activity by the US Government. Unlike the 'real' journalists who are lapdogs for the powers-that-be. It's almost funny reading these outraged governmental reactions to China and Russia, tossing around terms like 'Rule of Law' when it comes to handing over Snowden's skinny butt. The government officials releasing these statements obviously have no sense of irony.

However, even more chilling is the disclosure of a New Directive, the Insider Threat Program. Read this over at Charles Pierce's blog, taken from a McClatchy article:

So now we're inviting Federal employees to snitch on one another. To prevent further spying, of course. Spy on your co-workers, keep those eyes keen for any suspicious 'signs--stress, financial problems, divorce. How about if you just dislike someone? Or you're pissed that employee x got a promotion and you didn't? Or you're carrying an old grudge and see an opportunity to create whole lot of trouble for an ex?

What could go wrong? We might ask a few East Germans how it all played out.

This is Paranoia 101. And the US government is 'It.'

I think the commentator is Trowbridge H. Ford, Joseph.

He has 17 articles @ click on his name in the sidebar. He's full of narrative and (old school) has a bibliography at the end.
Kind of confused again--the comment appears to be from Craig Murray himself:

But maybe I missed a beat somewhere.....
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