Intensified Warrantless Spying in America
Lawless spying on Americans.
by Stephen Lendman
Newly released ACLU Justice Department documents and Kurt Eichenwald 's just published book titled "500 Days: Secrets and Lies in the Terror Wars" provide new information on lawless spying in America.
Eichenwald described "the most dramatic expansion of NSA's power and authority in the agency's 49 year history." It was devised days after 9/11, he said. In fact, it began much earlier.
In December 2000, the NSA said:
"The volumes and routing of data make finding and processing nuggets of intelligence information more difficult. To perform both its offensive and defensive mission, NSA must 'live on the network.' "
Its mission "demand(s) a powerful, permanent presence on a global telecommunications network that will host the 'protected' communications of Americans as well as the targeted communications of adversaries."
Who knows when this began. Bet on long before 9/11. That incident made it easier. Doing so disregards Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) provisions. International and domestic law considerations never compromised America's imperium or how it operates domestically.
Extrajudicially, Bush officials unilaterally gave NSA power to compile millions of emails and phone calls into a database for analysis.
To this day, Obama officials claim no court or judge can challenge them. What they say goes. Governing this way is called tyranny. Imperial arrogance goes its own way. Legal considerations are ignored.
Bush administration officials went all out to keep information on their program secret. At first they succeeded. The New York Times knew about but stayed silent.
In December 2005, that changed. Times writers James Risen and Eric Lichtblau headlined "Bush Lets US Spy on Callers Without Courts," saying:
Post-9/11, lawless spying became policy. In 2002, Bush authorized it by presidential order. Big Brother watches everyone it sets its sights on. So-called threats were invented to justify it.
Today, it's more intensive than ever. After its publication, The Times article went viral. Congressional investigations and lawsuits followed. Two will be argued in weeks. The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) has its day scheduled shortly.