Gotta move quickly...
That secret listening post.
I thought that the preceding post -- which identifies the probable location of the secret base in the Middle East maintained by GCHQ (Britain's NSA) -- would get a lot of attention. Instead, this blog launched a lead balloon. Let's try again.
This follow-up story in The Telegraph
recapitulates the first report in the Independent.
The Middle East listening station picks up messages and data travelling through the submarine cables in the region, which are then copied on to a computer system and examined.
The system was reportedly established while Labour was in Government, under a warrant signed by David Miliband, who was Foreign Secretary at the time.
I didn't notice Milibrand's name before. He became Foreign Secretary in 2007 and held the job until 2010. This small nugget of data fits in with my thesis that British spooks were responsible for the "cable cut" mystery of 2008.
Why do I harp on this? Back in 2008
, some observers (including myself) wrote pieces warning that the cable cut "accidents" were too numerous and convenient to be accidental. But the public didn't listen to guys like me; the public preferred the reassurances of those mainstream writers who snickered at those wacky conspiracy theorists with their wacky ideas. "Undersea cables are accidentally severed all the time
," we were told. Only a paranoid fool would suggest that spooks might resort to sabotage and trickery to scoop up data.
Well, here it is, five years later, and all signs indicate that I was right. So, like, neener
Obama has proposed an NSA review panel, and guess who he wants to be on it? Cass Sunstein.
If you've forgotten who he is, go here
. In short: Sunstein was the genius who decided that the best way for the government to tamp down "conspiracy culture" would be to act conspiratorially. He wanted paid gummint shills to infiltrate conspiracy chat groups and toss water on the wildfires of lunacy.
Of course, a little common sense should reveal the big flaw in this plan: Inevitably, the existence of those shills would become known -- and after the Big Reveal, the looniest conspiratards would consider their beliefs to be confirmed. The wackos who think that Obama is a Muslim space vampire will redouble their efforts once they learn that the gummint has tried to censor the Muslim space vampire truthers.
man, Cass is, and yet he couldn't figure that one out on his own. I can think of a word that rhymes with "Cass"...
Another reason to hate 8.
The German government warns
that Windows 8 contains a backdoor that says "Hey, hey, NSA -- come see what I'm doing today!"
The German government's documents allege that the group's core hardware element - a chip called the Trusted Platform Module (TPM), which appears in hardware built by Trusted Computing Group companies - interfaces directly with Windows 8 and enables Microsoft remote, unfettered access to any computer on which the operating system runs.
Apparently, Windows 7 (greatest OS ever!) is safe. Well, safer.
Also see here
Did you get the memo?
I really should devote an entire post to this fine piece of investigative reporting
by Greg Palast. If you think Larry Summers is bad now
, wait until you read this
The Memo confirmed every conspiracy freak’s fantasy: that in the late 1990s, the top US Treasury officials secretly conspired with a small cabal of banker big-shots to rip apart financial regulation across the planet. When you see 26.3 percent unemployment in Spain, desperation and hunger in Greece, riots in Indonesia and Detroit in bankruptcy, go back to this End Game memo, the genesis of the blood and tears.
The NSA vs. Kim Dotcom.
The Treasury official playing the bankers’ secret End Game was Larry Summers. Today, Summers is Barack Obama’s leading choice for Chairman of the US Federal Reserve, the world’s central bank.
You may know that Kim is a Finnish-born "internet entrepreneur" in New Zealand who made a ton of money from the Medaupload site, which was shut down because it provided free goodies. The NZ government, acting at the behest of the US, arrested Kim; the gummint also got his lists of "customers." His case is a cause celebre
among those scoundrels who like to use the internet to get free goodies.
We now learn that the NSA helped catch Kim, using PRISM
. (Also see here
This is a Rubicon-crossing moment. Even if you hate guys like Kim, you should be concerned to see the NSA's capabilities used against a private citizen. He is not a terrorist or the representative of a foreign power. Cops
are using now PRISM to keep citizens
Haven't I been warning you folks that this would happen?
Now I don't know what to make of this guy. First, he croons a love-song to the Randroid wing of the GOP. Then, we learn about...this.
...the Wikileaks Party revealed a new attempt to appeal to the far Right. In official election tickets lodged with the Australian Electoral Commission, they have said they want the fascist Australia First Party, the pro-shooting-in-National-Parks Shooters and Fishers Party , and the “mens rights activist” Non-Custodial Parents Party to win a seat instead of the Australian Greens. In New South Wales, if you take the easy option and just tick the Wikileaks Party box in the Senate, and if they don’t win, your vote will go to those three right-wing parties before it goes to the Greens.
In other words, the Wikileaks Party in Oz favors fascists over lefties. This move led to the implosion of the Wikileaks party.
Just yesterday, Assange offered a statement euphoniously titled "Google and the NSA: Who’s holding the ‘shit-bag’ now?"
He makes some very good points about the many ways in which Google has fallen away from it's original "Don't be evil" philosophy:
Google started out as part of Californian graduate student culture around San Francisco’s Bay Area. But as Google grew it encountered the big bad world. It encountered barriers to its expansion in the form of complex political networks and foreign regulations. So it started doing what big bad American companies do, from Coca Cola to Northrop Grumman. It started leaning heavily on the State Department for support, and by doing so it entered into the Washington DC system. A recently released statistic shows that Google now spends even more money than Lockheed Martin on paid lobbyists in Washington.
That Google was taking NSA money in exchange for handing over people’s data comes as no surprise. When Google encountered the big bad world, Google itself got big and bad.
Yeah, well...here's the thing, Julian: You can't assail Google for playing the Washington game and simultaneously root for the most conservative wing of the Republican party to take power. As for those fascist groups you pal around with in Oz: They may not be "big and bad" yet
, but they are indeed bad, and God help us if they ever make it big.
Ah...hell. There's just too much going on, and I need to draw this post to a close. So I'll give you just the basics: Although we've been repeatedly told that Syrian use of chemical weaponry justifies American intervention, the American people aren't falling for this line
, and history suggests that the rebels, not the government, are the ones using chemical weapons
.The Syrian government has welcomed inspectors
, indicating that Assad is not the one with something to hide.
The American people are being uncharacteristically wise in their hesitation to become involved. We don't need to get bogged down in another Iraq. Syrian dictator Assad is no angel -- quite the opposite, in fact -- but the Al Nusra front, which seeks his overthrow, will probably be worse.
Let the Syrians work this one out.