T Nation

Bush Lets US Spy On Callers Without Courts


#1

Well, interesting to say the least...

http://nytimes.com/2005/12/16/politics/16program.html?hp&ex=1134709200&en=22cb502ee0dee292&ei=5094&partner=homepage


#2

My phone keeps making a tapping noise when i call people


#3

Would someone mind explaining to me how this is "ok" to anyone? Expanding the powers of the NSA drastically in secrecy to where it now directly affects Americans is now acceptable?


#4

I doubt anybody supports this. The war on terror is getting out of hand...


#5

But when concerns just like this were brought up before this man was re-elected, people were branded as stating the sky is falling. It would seem more like common sense at this point. I guess party affiliation blinds all.


#6

Has any of you read the book 1984 by George Orwell. Pretty much right on just a few years early.

With all the credit card, speed pass, ez-pass, cc tv, PC, gps cell phones you might as well have a chip in your neck.


#7

Im just going to keep my mouth shut. The feds are probably tapping my phones right now. If anybody on T-Nation would have their lines tapped it would have to be vroom


#8

Everytime the EU moves closer to nationhood, east-asia moves to improve trade within its area, and the americas discuss the FTAA, it makes me stroke my beard a little.


#9

"If you want a vision of the future Winston: imagine a boot stomping on a human face, forever."

That's from memory. Great read in high school.


#10

http://volokh.com/archives/archive_2005_12_11-2005_12_17.shtml#1134704543

Domestic Surveillance By the NSA?:

James Risen and Eric Lichtblau break a tremendously important story in tomorrow's New York Times about a secret program that has permitted the NSA to spy without a warrant inside the United States ( http://nytimes.com/2005/12/16/politics/16program.html ). The story begins:

  [i]Months after the Sept. 11 attacks, President Bush secretly authorized the National Security Agency to eavesdrop on Americans and others inside the United States to search for evidence of terrorist activity without the court-approved warrants ordinarily required for domestic spying, according to government officials.

  Under a presidential order signed in 2002, the intelligence agency has monitored the international telephone calls and international e-mail messages of hundreds, perhaps thousands, of people inside the United States without warrants over the past three years in an effort to track possible "dirty numbers" linked to Al Qaeda, the officials said. The agency, they said, still seeks warrants to monitor entirely domestic communications.

  The previously undisclosed decision to permit some eavesdropping inside the country without court approval was a major shift in American intelligence-gathering practices, particularly for the National Security Agency, whose mission is to spy on communications abroad. As a result, some officials familiar with the continuing operation have questioned whether the surveillance has stretched, if not crossed, constitutional limits on legal searches.[/i]

How much monitoring is occurring? Here's what the article says:

 [i] While many details about the program remain secret, officials familiar with it say the N.S.A. eavesdrops without warrants on up to 500 people in the United States at any given time.[/i]

Is this legal, you're wondering? The article offers this:

 [i] Mr. Bush's executive order allowing some warrantless eavesdropping on those inside the United States - including American citizens, permanent legal residents, tourists and other foreigners - is based on classified legal opinions that assert that the president has broad powers to order such searches, derived in part from the September 2001 Congressional resolution authorizing him to wage war on Al Qaeda and other terrorist groups, according to the officials familiar with the N.S.A. operation.

 &nbsp. . .

  The legal opinions that support the N.S.A. operation remain classified, but they appear to have followed private discussions among senior administration lawyers and other officials about the need to pursue aggressive strategies that once may have been seen as crossing a legal line, according to senior officials who participated in the discussions.[/i]

According to the story, some officials objected, and DOJ audited the program:

 [i] Some agency officials wanted nothing to do with the program, apparently fearful of participating in an illegal operation, a former senior Bush administration official said. Before the 2004 election, the official said, some N.S.A. personnel worried that the program might come under scrutiny by Congressional or criminal investigators if Senator John Kerry, the Democratic nominee, was elected president.[/i]

I hope we'll be hearing more about this in coming weeks, as this is big news. While the statutory privacy laws have an exception for this type of monitoring, see 18 U.S.C. 2511(f) ( http://www4.law.cornell.edu/uscode/html/uscode18/usc_sec_18_00002511----000-.html ), and the constitutional limits on e-mail surveillance are uncertain even in traditional criminal cases, the constitutionality of warrantless interception of telephone calls in situations like this is really murky stuff. To get up to speed on some of the issues, check out Judge Sand's opinion in United States v. bin Laden, 126 F.Supp.2d 264 (S.D.N.Y. 2000). ( http://www.law.syr.edu/faculty/banks/terrorism/dummyfl/binladen_12_19_00.pdf )


#11

I honestly can't believe this happens at the applause of the American people. Is it just apathy or stupidity?


#12

Come on professor it's for your safety.


#13

Its amazing what can be accomplished through fear,huh? I actually found this quite appaling, and arguing against it im sure will bring nothing but comments about how we arent safe, they only spy on terrorists, and other things of that nature. But im sure there are many who find it quite disturbing as well, I HOPE...


#14

Before commenting, I'll be waiting to see if there is any validity to this story.

Remember the "truck full of illegal ballots crossing the border from iran" on Wednesday night?

You shouldn't: It never happened. However, it was a nyt story.

The nyt can kiss my ass.

Their agenda is crystal clear.

JeffR


#15

Wait, I know, this is all OK because there are elections in IRAQ...


#16

More Americans are willing to give up their freedoms for security.

Giving into the propaganda that we're not safe if the government isn't watching everyone all the time.

Haven't our phones always been traceable? I don't know if it was true or not, but I used to always hear that if you say certain key words over the phone, the conversation starts to get recorded. Key words like "shoot the president".

Maybe the internet is secretly bugged as well. If you don't hear from me for over a week, you know what happened.


#17

Actually, they gathered evidence for a YEAR about this before releasing it, but ignorance is bliss I suppose.


#18

I woke up this morning thinking about this stuff... the erosion of freedom and rights of Americans all in the guise of protection. Roll this in with the secret prisons the CIA has overseas, in order to obfuscate and circumvent national law... At some point, "my America" has turned into something that resembles a police state. This is simply not freedom. I believe "people" have turned a blind eye to this erosion so they can say that it's making this country a safer place from terror.

HA. Freedom has always been a struggle for which people have fought and died. I've come to terms with terror this way: as long as I stand and breathe, I will fight "them" if they show up in my neighborhood. I don't need anyone to provide some false safety with the corresponding erosion of freedom that I enjoy.

This is nothing but a scam to subjugate an afraid populace. Shame on the powers that be.

Hey, thanks, and I'll get off my soapbox now. Boy, that felt good.


#19

"We will grind you revolutionists down under our heel, and we shall walk upon your faces. The world is ours, we are its lords, and ours it shall remain....There is the word. It is the king of words--Power. Not God, not Mammon, but Power. Pour it over your tongue till it tingles with it. Power."

  • Jack London

I hope they keep doing things like this. And I hope it gets worse. Because for those of us with nothing to lose, they are adding fuel to the fire.

I think, if things stay on the present course, a day of reckoning will come for them


#20

As usual, things at the NYT are not as they seem:

http://www.drudgereport.com/flash9nyt.htm

NYT 'SPYING' SPLASH TIED TO BOOK RELEASE
Fri Dec 16 200 11:27:16 ET

Exclusive

Newspaper fails to inform readers "news break" is tied to book publication

On the front page of today's NEW YORK TIMES, national security reporter James Risen claims that "months after the September 11 attacks, President Bush secretly authorized the National Security Agency to eavesdrop on Americans and others inside the United States... without the court approved warrants ordinarily required for domestic spying, according to government officials."

Risen claims the White House asked the paper not to publish the article, saying that it could jeopardize continuing investigations and alert would-be terrorists that they might be under scrutiny.

Risen claims the TIMES delayed publication of the article for a year to conduct additional reporting.

But now comes word James Risen's article is only one of many "explosive newsbreaking" stories that can be found -- in his upcoming book!

The paper failed to reveal the urgent story was tied to a book release and sale.

"STATE OF WAR: The Secret History of the CIA and the Bush Administration" is to be published by FREE PRESS in the coming weeks, sources tell the DRUDGE REPORT.

Carisa Hays, VP, Director of Publicity FREE PRESS, confirms the book is being published.

The book editor of Bush critic Richard Clarke [AGAINST ALL ENEMIES] signed Risen to FREE PRESS.

Developing...