Author Topic: they know what you are doing  (Read 126277 times)

sky otter

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Re: they know what you are doing
« Reply #345 on: October 25, 2013, 06:18:37 AM »

yeah P
you have it right..they have watched each other for a long time..but talking about it out in the open and in newsprint and such is probably not to their liking

but i am beginning to wonder just WHO was behind what's -his-name strirring the pot
now this just maybe the real conspiracy...
and WHY
is this a reveal or more smoke and mirrors?

humans or not humans pushing the envelope of no privacy
is it to wake the sleeping or  ?????

i keep coming up with some thoughts i don't want to be thinking... :(

Offline Pimander

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Re: they know what you are doing
« Reply #346 on: October 25, 2013, 07:06:00 AM »
i keep coming up with some thoughts i don't want to be thinking... :(
I keep finding out things that I was better off not knowing.  Worrying.  :(

sky otter

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Re: they know what you are doing
« Reply #347 on: October 25, 2013, 07:52:39 AM »

Worrying.   :(

yep..maybe  life jackets and some extra paddles needed  ;) headin for white water

sky otter

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Re: they know what you are doing
« Reply #348 on: October 26, 2013, 08:10:06 AM »

NSA Website Offline, Agency Denies Attack (UPDATE)

The Huffington Post  |  Posted: 10/25/2013 6:43 pm EDT  |  Updated: 10/25/2013 10:26 pm EDT

The website for the National Security Agency went offline Friday, with unavailable during the early evening. On Twitter, accounts associated with the hacker group Anonymous implied that the group may have been behind the attack:

a bunch of tweets here

Reports that is down due to a hacker attack are unconfirmed, but the website was offline at press time. Gizmodo pointed out that reports of the outage began on Twitter nearly an hour before accounts believed to be associated with Anonymous began taking credit for it.

@AnonymousOwn3r does have a history of claiming responsibility for cyber attacks, RT noted in its report on the alleged hack. In July, Anonymous claimed it had launched a cyber attack against members of Congress.

As Epoch Times pointed out, the website said on Friday evening that is “DOWN for everyone.”

The report comes amid an ongoing debate over the NSA's surveillance methods after former intelligence contractor employee Edward Snowden leaked a large number of national security documents in August.

UPDATE 10 p.m.: The Associated Press reports:

WASHINGTON (AP) — The National Security Agency says its website was inaccessible for several hours during a scheduled update.

The agency says an internal error in the system caused the problem.

There had been speculation on the Internet that the online site had been hit with a denial-of-service attack, but the agency said that was not true.

A denial-of-service attack is an attempt by outsiders to make a network unavailable to its intended users.

The NSA said the problem would be resolved Friday night.

watching you    watching me   watching you....hey anyone have some popcorn..bwhahahahahahah

sky otter

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Re: they know what you are doing
« Reply #349 on: October 26, 2013, 11:03:13 AM »

do ya think if they are watching each other they'll leave the little guy alone? neither

SPY SPAT NSA Spying Threatens U.S. Foreign Policy Efforts

 By DEB RIECHMANN 10/26/13 10:19 AM ET EDT 

WASHINGTON -- WASHINGTON (AP) — Secretary of State John Kerry went to Europe to talk about Mideast peace, Syria and Iran. What he got was an earful of outrage over U.S. snooping abroad.

President Barack Obama has defended America's surveillance dragnet to leaders of Russia, Mexico, Brazil, France and Germany, but the international anger over the disclosures shows no signs of abating in the short run.

Longer term, the revelations by former National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden about NSA tactics that allegedly include tapping the cellphones of as many as 35 world leaders threaten to undermine U.S. foreign policy in a range of areas.

This vacuum-cleaner approach to data collection has rattled allies.

"The magnitude of the eavesdropping is what shocked us," former French Foreign Minister Bernard Kouchner said in a radio interview. "Let's be honest, we eavesdrop too. Everyone is listening to everyone else. But we don't have the same means as the United States, which makes us jealous."

So where in the world isn't the NSA? That's one big question raised by the disclosures. Whether the tapping of allies is a step too far might be moot.

The British ambassador to Lebanon, Tom Fletcher, tweeted this past week: "I work on assumption that 6+ countries tap my phone. Increasingly rare that diplomats say anything sensitive on calls."

Diplomatic relations are built on trust. If America's credibility is in question, the U.S. will find it harder to maintain alliances, influence world opinion and maybe even close trade deals.

Spying among allies is not new.

Madeleine Albright, secretary of state during the Clinton administration, recalled being at the United Nations and having the French ambassador ask her why she said something in a private conversation apparently intercepted by the French.

The French government protested revelations this past week that the NSA had collected 70.3 million French-based telephone and electronic message records in a 30-day period.

Albright says Snowden's disclosures have hurt U.S. policymakers.

"A lot of the things that have come out, I think are specifically damaging because they are negotiating positions and a variety of ways that we have to go about business," Albright said at a conference hosted by the Center for American Progress in Washington.

"I think it has made life very difficult for Secretary Kerry. ... There has to be a set of private talks that, in fact, precede negotiations and I think it makes it very, very hard."

The spy flap could give the Europeans leverage in talks with the U.S. on a free trade agreement, which would join together nearly half of the global economy.

"If we go to the negotiations and we have the feeling those people with whom we negotiate know everything that we want to deal with in advance, how can we trust each other?" asked Martin Schulz, president of the European Parliament.

Claude Moniquet, a former French counterintelligence officer and now director of Brussels-based European Strategic Intelligence and Security Center, said the controversy came at a good time for Europe "to have a lever, a means of pressure ... in these negotiations."

To Henry Farrell and Martha Finnemore at George Washington University, damage from the NSA disclosures could "undermine Washington's ability to act hypocritically and get away with it."

The danger in the disclosures "lies not in the new information that they reveal but in the documented confirmation they provide of what the United States is actually doing and why," they wrote in Foreign Affairs.

"When these deeds turn out to clash with the government's public rhetoric, as they so often do, it becomes harder for U.S. allies to overlook Washington's covert behavior and easier for U.S. adversaries to justify their own."

They claim the disclosures forced Washington to abandon its "naming-and-shaming campaign against Chinese hacking."

The revelations could undercut Washington's effort to fight terrorism, says Kiron Skinner, director of the Center for International Relations and Politics at Carnegie Mellon University. The broad nature of NSA surveillance goes against the Obama administration's claim that much of U.S. espionage is carried out to combat terrorism, she said.

"If Washington undermines its own leadership or that of its allies, the collective ability of the West to combat terrorism will be compromised," Skinner said. "Allied leaders will have no incentive to put their own militaries at risk if they cannot trust U.S. leadership."

The administration asserts that the U.S. is amassing intelligence of the type gathered by all nations and that it's necessary to protect the U.S. and its allies against security threats.

Kerry discussed the NSA affair in Europe with French and Italian officials this past week.

Most governments have not retaliated, but some countries are pushing back.

Germany and France are demanding that the administration agree by year's end to new rules that could mean an end to reported American eavesdropping on foreign leaders, companies and innocent citizens.

Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff canceled her official state visit to the White House. She ordered measures aimed at greater Brazilian online independence and security after learning that the NSA intercepted her communications, hacked into the state-owned Petrobras oil company's network and spied on Brazilians.

Brazil says it is working with other countries to draft a U.N. General Assembly resolution that would guarantee people's privacy in electronic communications.

A European Parliament committee approved rules that would strengthen online privacy and outlaw the kind of data transfers the U.S. is using for its spying program.

European lawmakers have called for the suspension of an agreement that grants U.S. authorities access to bank data needed for terrorism-related investigations.

"We need trust among allies and partners," said German Chancellor Angela Merkel, whose cellphone was allegedly tapped by the NSA. "Such trust now has to be built anew."

Associated Press writers Elaine Ganley in Paris, Josef Federman in Jerusalem, Robert H. Reid in Berlin and Jim Kuhnhenn in Washington contributed to this report.


Americans Think Tracking Merkel's Phone Is Unacceptable, But Tracking Other Leaders Might Be OK

Emily Swanson     
Posted: 10/26/2013 9:33 am EDT  |  Updated: 10/26/2013 12:47 pm EDT

Americans generally frown on the idea of spying on German Chancellor Angela Merkel, according to a new HuffPost/YouGov poll. But many think the idea of spying on other world leaders would be acceptable.

According to the new poll, 49 percent of Americans think it's unacceptable for the U.S. to track Merkel's phone calls, while only 25 percent said it's acceptable. The Guardian reported this week that the U.S. may have tracked calls to and from Merkel's cell phone in the past -- although White House spokesman Jay Carney denied that the country is doing so currently or will in the future.

Aversion to the idea of tracking Merkel appeared to be based mostly on her standing as the leader of a close U.S. ally, while respondents expressed more openness to tracking some other world leaders.

Americans were largely on board with the idea of tracking Iranian President Hassan Rouhani, the poll found. Forty-nine percent said that would be acceptable, while 32 percent said it would be unacceptable. And a 43 percent to 34 percent plurality said it would be acceptable to spy on Chinese President Xi Jinping.

In contrast, respondents said that it would be unacceptable to track another close U.S. ally, British Prime Minister David Cameron, by a 55 percent to 23 percent margin.

Respondents were more divided over the idea of tracking Russian President Vladimir Putin's calls -- 42 percent said it would be acceptable, while 38 percent said it would be unacceptable. Respondents also said it would be unacceptable to track Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto's phone by a 40 percent to 36 margin.

While pluralities of Republicans, Democrats and independents generally agreed on whether or not it was acceptable to track the phone calls of each leader, there were exceptions. Democrats and independents generally agreed that it would not be acceptable to track Mexican President Nieto's phone calls, but by a 47 percent to 29 percent margin more Republicans said it would be acceptable. And while pluralities of both Republicans and Democrats said it would be acceptable to track Putin's phone calls, a plurality of independents said it would be unacceptable.

The HuffPost/YouGov poll was conducted Oct. 23-24 among 1,000 U.S. adults using a sample selected from YouGov's opt-in online panel to match the demographics and other characteristics of the adult U.S. population. Factors considered include age, race, gender, education, employment, income, marital status, number of children, voter registration, time and location of Internet access, interest in politics, religion and church attendance.

The Huffington Post has teamed up with YouGov to conduct daily opinion polls. You can learn more about this project and take part in YouGov's nationally representative opinion polling.

Offline stealthyaroura

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Re: they know what you are doing
« Reply #350 on: October 26, 2013, 03:44:12 PM »
Look at the views little otter :D I bet  "they" are watching this thread.
It's some body of work  8) I don't know where you find the energy!
One busy otter :D and for that I pass you some Gold.
"Otterleaks" hehe.
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never forget this great man who gave so much
& asked for nothing but to let electricity be free for all.

Offline stealthyaroura

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Re: they know what you are doing
« Reply #351 on: October 26, 2013, 03:59:50 PM »
"It is important for the public to know that some of these capabilities exist," Yiannis Antonaides with contractor BAE Systems said in the clip, but noted the sensor itself cannot be revealed. "Because we are not allowed to expose some of the pieces that make up this sensor, so you get to look a pretty plastic curtains."

It's important that "THEY" or YOU if your snooping to know that I have a laser small enough to conceal yet powerful enough to not only blind your capability to monitor me but also put your camera permanently out of action. :P
Nikola Tesla humanitarian / Genius.
never forget this great man who gave so much
& asked for nothing but to let electricity be free for all.

sky otter

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Re: they know what you are doing
« Reply #352 on: October 26, 2013, 05:15:33 PM »



it started just to collect a few articles..but has somehow turned into a big fat collection
with a few comments tossed in

 :o ::)

Offline Pimander

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Re: they know what you are doing
« Reply #353 on: October 27, 2013, 08:07:54 AM »
We should bang a couple of ads on pages like this and pay the key contributor for their efforts.  Then it would be real gold for you Sky. ;)

sky otter

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Re: they know what you are doing
« Reply #354 on: October 27, 2013, 10:45:25 AM »

lol.. Pimander
i have no objection to you doing, i mean

 i really don't need more gold..but that is a kind thought so thanks

too much and i become visible to those i would rather not be seen by
or ask for loans by those i would rather not be realted

i'm warm, dry and have enough to eat and some gold to pay bills
and still buy books and such
so i am a happy camper
any more and i might turn into a raging maniac


sky otter

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Re: they know what you are doing
« Reply #355 on: October 27, 2013, 11:00:20 AM »

hooray for us  but I’ll bet each of these fine protesting folk are now on some kind of facial recognition or other watch list
I am so sad to be so cynical

NSA 'Stop Watching Us' Protest Draws Thousands In Washington

 Posted: 10/26/2013 7:07 pm EDT  |  Updated: 10/27/2013 9:24 am EDT

 Farah Mohamed Become a fan

WASHINGTON -- Thousands rallied against the National Security Agency's domestic and international surveillance programs Saturday, marching from Union Station to the Capitol to call for an end to mass surveillance.

"We are witnessing an American moment, in which ordinary people -- from high schools to high office -- stand up to oppose a dangerous trend in government," said a statement from Edward Snowden, read aloud at the rally by a participant.

The former NSA employee who leaked information about government surveillance programs to the media ended his statement by saying, "It is time for reform. Elections are coming, and we're watching you."

The march was organized by the Stop Watching Us coalition and drew on the support of more than 100 public advocacy groups. They included the American Civil Liberties Union, Demand Progress and the Council on American–Islamic Relations.

Demonstrators came from across the United States. Some wore tape across their mouths and masks, and dressed up as cameras. Others carried signs plastered with images of Snowden, and a giant blue and white parachute that read "constitutional rights not NSA mass spying." Groups of protesters chanted slogans like, "They say wiretap, we say fight back," and "Hey hey, ho ho, the NSA has got to go." One person dressed up as Obama, held an "Obamacam" and posed in front of a model drone.

David Busey, 69, came from Pennsylvania to support the cause. He's been to many rallies for different causes, but it was his first time with such a large group in Washington.

"'I'm here to join with a lot of other people -- which I'm thankful to be able to do -- saying that the government needs to quit collecting information that is not going to be used to prosecute individuals," Busey said. "The government shouldn't be doing this to us. It should be our friend and not [be] treating us like criminals when we're not criminals."

"I hope that everybody takes note of my sign," he added, hoisting a large placard above his head that read: "National security is the root password of the U.S. Constitution."

Craig Aaron, head of the group Free Press, also pointed out that the fight went beyond partisanship. "This isn't about right and left -- it's about right and wrong."

Elise Power, 62, from Pittsburgh witnessed this firsthand when a man in a tea party hat introduced himself to Power, a self-described progressive, she said.

"I got a picture with him," Power said. "We agreed that we were both here for a similar reason, even though we have drastically different ideas about politics, we both care about this issue. And that was eye-opening to me. I don't think there are too many of his gang here today, but I'm kind of glad that he is."

Others like Debbie Sweet, director of advocacy group The World Can't Wait, were hoping to promote something larger than anti-NSA protesters. She brought a model drone to the rally.

"It's somewhat of a libertarian crowd, and there's some right-wingers here," she said. "And we wanted to bring the message into this crowd that we are against the U.S. spying on everyone -- whole populations -- for the purpose of keeping down dissent and protest ... our main point today is American lives are not more important than anyone else's lives. And it takes mass action by the people to stop these dirty secret wars."

The event, which followed new revelations by Snowden that the U.S. monitored the phone of German Chancellor Angela Merkel and leaders in 35 countries, provided a chance for protesters to express their frustration with all surveillance -- including international surveillance.

Power, who also carried a sign with Merkel mentioned on one side, had this to say about surveillance:

"I quoted Mrs. Merkel because when I heard the story about her, I was shocked and embarrassed for my country," she said. "When Obama was elected, there was a lot of hope in Europe. People thought that he was a really good guy and that things were going to be different, and that he had really good values about things like this. And, I'm so ashamed that it's come to this. It's terrible."


United Press International  10/27/2013 1:25 PM ET

Anti-NSA rally draws thousands to Washington

During a rally in Washington, fugitive secrets-leaker Edward Snowden send a message urging activists to push for greater public awareness of spying violations.

Snowden, the former National Security Agency contractor who leaked information about the agency's massive phone and Internet monitoring, sent his message to the rally Saturday as a statement from Russia, where he lives under temporary asylum, The Christian Science Monitor reported.

He is wanted by the United States.

"Today, no telephone in America makes a call without leaving a record with the NSA. Today, no Internet transaction enters or leaves America without passing through the NSA's hands. Our representatives in Congress tell us this is not surveillance. They're wrong," Snowden said. "Now it's time for the government to learn from us."

Last week, leaks tied to Snowden revealed that the NSA allegedly eavesdropped on cellphone calls by German Chancellor Angela Merkel. The news followed protests by leaders from at least 30 other countries -- most of them U.S. allies -- who said NSA spying is a violation and could seriously hinder their relationship with the United States. The United States officially denied the monitoring.

At the rally at the Capitol Reflecting Pool activists pushed for reforms that would prohibit blanket surveillance of phone and Internet activity of U.S. citizens, the Monitor said. The activists said they also want a special committee to investigate and report domestic spying violations and create regulatory reforms.

The rally was on the 12th anniversary of the signing of the Patriot Act, which allows the FBI to conduct surveillance in terrorism and espionage cases with a federal judge's approval.

Next week, Rep. Jim Sensenbrenner, R-Wis., is to introduce a bill that would create more transparency and accountability at the NSA. Sensenbrenner was the main author of the Patriot Act.

Offline burntheships

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Re: they know what you are doing
« Reply #356 on: October 27, 2013, 11:28:54 AM »
What a ruse the NSA pulled here:
The Washington Times is preparing to take legal action in connection with the raid of a reporter’s home by government officials.
The warrant was narrowly written to limit the raid to a search for weapons owned by the reporter’s husband. Instead, the raiders carefully picked through the reporter’s files and took those pertaining to her stories about the TSA. The man in charge of this search also happened to be a former TSA employee who apparently had a direct interest in those files.
That her private files were seized, says Mrs. Hudson [the reporter], is particularly disturbing because of interactions that she and her husband had during the search of their home, as well as months afterwards, with Coast Guard investigator Miguel Bosch. According to his profile on the networking site LinkedIn, Mr. Bosch worked at the Federal Air Marshal Service from April 2001 through November 2007.
It was Mr. Bosch, Mrs. Hudson says, who asked her during the Aug. 6 search if she was the same Audrey Hudson who had written the air marshal stories. It was also Mr. Bosch, she says, who phoned Mr. Flanagan a month later to say that documents taken during the search had been cleared.
During the call, according Mrs. Hudson, Mr. Bosch said the files had been taken to make sure that they contained only “FOIA-able” information and that he had circulated them to the Transportation Security Administration, which oversees the Federal Air Marshal Service, in order to verify that “it was legitimate” for her to possess such information.
“Essentially, the files that included the identities of numerous government whistleblowers were turned over to the same government agency and officials who they were exposing for wrongdoing,” Mrs. Hudson said.

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sky otter

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Re: they know what you are doing
« Reply #357 on: October 27, 2013, 08:22:26 PM »

i have always hated it when bullies get some power..grrrrrrrrrrrrrrr

this stuff seems endless..i don't think there is anyone who has not been spyed on..idiots.!
NSA Collected Data On 60 Million Phone Calls In Spain Over Course Of One Month: Report
Posted: 10/27/2013 9:02 pm EDT  |  Updated: 10/27/2013 9:22 pm EDT

An upcoming story in the Spanish newspaper El Mundo reports that the U.S. National Security Agency swept up data on 60 million phone calls in Spain over the course of one month in 2012.

This latest revelation comes from documents uncovered by NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden. The El Mundo story was written by Glenn Greenwald and Germán Aranda.

Earlier on Sunday, Greenwald teased the story in a tweet:


He later revealed that the country in question is Spain, and he tweeted a screenshot of the story on El Mundo's front page:


This newest surveillance news is likely to further inflame international tensions surrounding the intelligence reach of the U.S. government. It comes on the heels of another story co-written by Greenwald, this one from France's Le Monde newspaper. The Le Monde report indicated that the NSA collected 70 million French telephone records over a 30-day period.

Also this week, a separate story revealed that the U.S. may have bugged the phone of German Chancellor Angela Merkel for over a decade. The NSA has denied reports that Obama was briefed on the matter as far back as 2010 by NSA Director Keith Alexander

sky otter

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Re: they know what you are doing
« Reply #358 on: October 28, 2013, 08:35:32 PM »

what are they going to do.. say .. oh yell we cleaned it up more spying..?
do they think anyone will believe them?

the rat smell is getting stronger


'We're Really Screwed Now': NSA's Best Friend Just Shivved The Spies
Posted By Shane Harris, John Hudson  Monday, October 28, 2013 - 7:21 PM

One of the National Security Agency's biggest defenders in Congress is suddenly at odds with the agency and calling for a top-to-bottom review of U.S. spy programs. And her long-time friends and allies are completely mystified by the switch.

"We're really screwed now," one NSA official told The Cable. "You know things are bad when the few friends you've got disappear without a trace in the dead of night and leave no forwarding address."

In a pointed statement issued today, Senate Intelligence Committee chairman Dianne Feinstein said she was "totally opposed" to gathering intelligence on foreign leaders and said it was "a big problem" if President Obama didn't know the NSA was monitoring the phone calls of German Chancellor Angela Merkel. She said the United States should only be spying on foreign leaders with hostile countries, or in an emergency, and even then the president should personally approve the surveillance. 

It was not clear what precipitated Feinstein's condemnation of the NSA. It marks a significant reversal for a lawmaker who not only defended agency surveillance programs -- but is about to introduce a bill expected to protect some of its most controversial activities.

Perhaps most significant is her announcement that the intelligence committee "will initiate a review into all intelligence collection programs." Feinstein did not say the review would be limited only to the NSA. If the review also touched on other intelligence agencies under the committee's jurisdiction, it could be one of the most far-reaching reviews in recent memory, encompassing secret programs of the CIA, the Defense Intelligence Agency, agencies that run imagery and spy satellites, as well as components of the FBI.

A former intelligence agency liaison to Congress said Feinstein's sudden outrage over spying on foreign leaders raised questions about how well informed she was about NSA programs and whether she'd been fully briefed by her staff. "The first question I'd ask is, what have you been doing for oversight? Second, if you've been reviewing this all along what has changed your mind?"

The former official said the intelligence committees receive lengthy and detailed descriptions every year about all NSA programs, including surveillance. "They're not small books. They're about the size of those old family photo albums that were several inches thick. They're hundreds of pages long."

A senior congressional aide said, "It's an absolute joke to think she hasn't been reading the signals intelligence intercepts as Chairman of Senate Intelligence for years."

The former official added that the "bottom line question is where was the Senate Intelligence Committee when it came to their oversight of these programs? And what were they being told by the NSA, because if they didn't know about this surveillance, that would imply they were being lied to."

A spokesperson for Feinstein did not respond to a request for more details in time for publication. And a spokesperson for Sen. Saxby Chambliss, the intelligence committee's vice chairman, said the senator had no comment at this time.

In a tacit acknowledgement of how supportive Feinstein has been of the administration's surveillance practices, the White House issued a lengthy statement about her Monday remarks.

"We consult regularly with Chairman Feinstein as a part of our ongoing engagement with the Congress on national security matters," said National Security Council spokesperson Caitlin Hayden. "We appreciate her continued leadership on these issues as Chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee.  I'm not going to go into the details of those private discussions, nor am I going to comment on assertions made in the Senator's statement today about U.S. foreign intelligence activities." The statement went on to note the administration's current review of surveillance practices worldwide.

The surprise change of tone comes during a crucial week on Capitol Hill as lawmakers on opposing sides of the surveillance debate look to introduce rival bills related to the NSA.

Striking first blood, opponents of expansive NSA surveillance are expected to introduce the "USA Freedom Act" on Tuesday, which would limit the bulk data collection of records under Section 215 of the Patriot Act, install an "office of the special advocate" to appeal FISA court decisions, and give subpoena powers on privacy matters to the Privacy and Civil LIberties Oversight Board. Sponsored by Reps. Jim Sensenbrenner (R-WI) and John Conyers (D-MI), the bill is backed by a strong bipartisan bench of some 60 lawmakers, including Reps. Darrell Issa (R-CA), Mike Quigley (D-IL), and Justin Amash (R-MI) and Sheila Jackson (D-TX).

A draft of the bill was provided to The Cable by a congressional aide and can be viewed in full here.

Unlike many House bills, Freedom Act has some bipartisan support in the Senate in the form of Vermont Democrat Patrick Leahy, who will be introducing a similar bill at the same time.

On the opposing side is Feinstein, who is looking to codify the NSA's controversial phone records program in her bill set for markup this week. According to published reports, the bill would give the agency the authority to vacuum metadata of all U.S. phone calls but not their content, meaning duration, numbers, and time of phone calls are fair game. A spokesperson for Feinstein said that the senator plans to move forward with the bill even in light of today's rhetorical about-face.

While the Feinstein bill could gain support in the Senate, a Congressional aide familiar with the politics in the House say it's likely dead on arrival in the lower chamber. If it went down, however, pro-surveillance lawmakers would still likely put up a fight.

"The fact is, the NSA has done more to save German lives than the German army since World War II," Rep. Peter King (R-NY) said on CNN.

Still, others often in favor of government surveillance have carved out surprising positions. Republican hawk John McCain, for instance, is now calling for a special select committee to investigate U.S. spying. "We have always eavesdropped on people around the world. But the advance of technology has given us enormous capabilities, and I think you might make an argument that some of this capability has been very offensive both to us and to our allies," McCain said.

Over at the Pentagon, Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel Monday refused to comment on the NSA's surveillance of world leaders, dismissing questions about what he may or may not have known about intelligence collection. "We have great respect for our partners, our allies, who cooperate with us and we cooperate with them to try to keep the world safe," said Hagel, standing beside New Zealand Minister of Defense Jonathan Coleman during a Pentagon press briefing. "Intelligence is a key part of that. And I think this issue will continue to be explored, as -- as it is now, but that's all I have to say."

Coleman responded to the same question: "New Zealand's not worried at all about this," he said. "We don't believe it would be occurring, and look, quite frankly there'd be nothing that anyone could hear in our private conversations that we wouldn't be prep[ared to share publicly." Coleman then cited a political cartoon in a newspaper in Wellington. It showed an analyst listening to the communiques from New Zealand with a big stream of "ZZZs" next to it. "I don't think New Zealand's got anything to worry about, and we have high trust in our relationships with the U.S."

With additional reporting by Matthew Aid and Gordon Lubold


NSA Spying: U.S. May Order Halt To Surveillance Of Allied Heads Of State


WASHINGTON -- WASHINGTON (AP) — A senior administration official says the United States is weighing ending spying against allied heads of state.

The official said late Monday a final decision has not been made and an internal review is ongoing. The review comes amid the furor in Europe over revelations that the National Security Agency allegedly eavesdropped on German Chancellor Angela Merkel (AHN'-geh-lah MEHR'-kuhl).

The official was not authorized to discuss the ongoing review by name and insisted on anonymity.


Sen. Dianne Feinstein Slams NSA Spying
Posted: 10/28/2013 5:17 pm EDT  |  Updated: 10/28/2013 10:07 pm EDT

WASHINGTON -- Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), the chair of the Senate Intelligence Committee, hammered the National Security Agency Monday over reports it spied on foreign leaders and allies, and revealed that President Barack Obama said he would halt such eavesdropping.

A senior administration official denied the White House was stopping programs aimed at allies. A source close to Feinstein insisted the California lawmaker had been informed by Obama that spying on friendly leaders would cease.

Saying that she is "totally opposed" to eavesdropping on the leaders of friendly governments and wants a complete review of U.S. intelligence activities, Feinstein, who had been a staunch defender of the NSA since former agency contractor Edward Snowden began leaking documents detailing its secret activities, came down hard on the spy agency.

In an uncharacteristically harsh statement, Feinstein said new allegations that the agency monitored the phone calls of foreign leaders, including German Chancellor Angela Merkel, are simply out of bounds, and suggested the NSA has failed to fully inform Congress and Obama of its activities.

“It is my understanding that President Obama was not aware Chancellor Merkel’s communications were being collected since 2002. That is a big problem," Feinstein said. “The White House has informed me that collection on our allies will not continue, which I support. But as far as I’m concerned, Congress needs to know exactly what our intelligence community is doing."

The senior administration official said Feinstein's statement that the White House is moving to stop spying on U.S. allies "is not accurate."

"While we have made some individual changes -- which I cannot detail -- we have not made across-the-board changes in policy like, for example, terminating intelligence collection that might be aimed at all allies," the official said.

It was unclear why Feinstein and the White House seemed to have differing interpretations of her conversations with Obama. But a spokeswoman for the president's National Security Council confirmed that the administration was re-evaluating its eavesdropping.

"We appreciate her [Feinstein's] continued leadership on these issues as chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee," said the spokeswoman, Caitlin Hayden. "We are also looking at whether the system that’s been in place for many years, called the National Intelligence Priorities Framework, could be modified to provide better policy guidance for our intelligence activities. The administration's review is ongoing ... but we have already made some decisions through this process and expect to make more as we continue. The review is meant to be completed by the end of the year."

The California senator has argued repeatedly that the NSA's mass collection of Americans' phone records is useful and necessary to protect the nation, and that it is carefully monitored by the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court. "It's called protecting America," Feinstein said in June (See video above.)

But the reported U.S. spying on foreign leaders -- and failing to explain such activities to elected officials -- is entirely inappropriate, Feinstein said Monday.

“It is abundantly clear that a total review of all intelligence programs is necessary so that members of the Senate Intelligence Committee are fully informed as to what is actually being carried out by the intelligence community," Feinstein said. “Unlike NSA’s collection of phone records under a court order, it is clear to me that certain surveillance activities have been in effect for more than a decade and that the Senate Intelligence Committee was not satisfactorily informed."

“With respect to NSA collection of intelligence on leaders of U.S. allies -- including France, Spain, Mexico and Germany -- let me state unequivocally: I am totally opposed," Feinstein added, spelling out what may be a rare rift between her and the Obama administration.

"I do not believe the United States should be collecting phone calls or emails of friendly presidents and prime ministers. The president should be required to approve any collection of this sort," she said.

Feinstein placed the blame on former President George W. Bush's administration and officials in the intelligence community who did not later divulge the activities to members of Obama's administration and Congress.

U.S. ambassadors have been summoned by outraged allies to explain the reported actions, and the revelations have sparked a backlash across Europe that may lead to restrictions on U.S. surveillance, as well as rollbacks of other post-9/11 American intelligence activities.

This story has been updated with a statement from a senior administration official and from National Security Council spokeswoman Caitlin Hayden and sources familiar with Feinstein's discussion with the president.

Michael McAuliff covers Congress and politics for The Huffington Post. Talk to him on Facebook.


White House OKd spying on allies, U.S. intelligence officials say

NSA and other U.S. intelligence agency staff members are said to be angry at President Obama for denying knowledge of the spying.

By Ken Dilanian and Janet Stobart
October 28, 2013, 7:25 p.m.
WASHINGTON — The White House and State Department signed off on surveillance targeting phone conversations of friendly foreign leaders, current and former U.S. intelligence officials said Monday, pushing back against assertions that President Obama and his aides were unaware of the high-level eavesdropping.

Professional staff members at the National Security Agency and other U.S. intelligence agencies are angry, these officials say, believing the president has cast them adrift as he tries to distance himself from the disclosures by former NSA contractor Edward Snowden that have strained ties with close allies.

The resistance emerged as the White House said it would curtail foreign intelligence collection in some cases and two senior U.S. senators called for investigations of the practice.

France, Germany, Italy, Mexico and Sweden have all publicly complained about the NSA surveillance operations, which reportedly captured private cellphone conversations by German Chancellor Angela Merkel, among other foreign leaders.

On Monday, as Spain joined the protest, the fallout also spread to Capitol Hill.

Until now, members of Congress have chiefly focused their attention on Snowden's disclosures about the NSA's collection of U.S. telephone and email records under secret court orders.

"With respect to NSA collection of intelligence on leaders of U.S. allies — including France, Spain, Mexico and Germany — let me state unequivocally: I am totally opposed," said Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), who chairs the Senate Intelligence Committee.

"Unless the United States is engaged in hostilities against a country or there is an emergency need for this type of surveillance, I do not believe the United States should be collecting phone calls or emails of friendly presidents and prime ministers," she said in a statement.

Feinstein said the Intelligence Committee had not been told of "certain surveillance activities" for more than a decade, and she said she would initiate a major review of the NSA operation. She added that the White House had informed her that "collection on our allies will not continue," although other officials said most U.S. surveillance overseas would not be affected.

Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), ranking minority member of the Armed Services Committee, said Congress should consider creating a special select committee to examine U.S. eavesdropping on foreign leaders.

"Obviously, we're going to want to know exactly what the president knew and when he knew it," McCain told reporters in Chicago. "We have always eavesdropped on people around the world. But the advance of technology has given us enormous capabilities, and I think you might make an argument that some of this capability has been very offensive both to us and to our allies."

In Madrid, Spanish Foreign Ministry officials summoned the U.S. ambassador to object to the alleged NSA communications net in Spain. Citing documents leaked by Snowden, El Mundo, a major Spanish daily, said the U.S. spy agency had collected data on more than 60 million phone calls made in just 30 days, from early December 2012 to early January 2013.

Precisely how the surveillance is conducted is unclear. But if a foreign leader is targeted for eavesdropping, the relevant U.S. ambassador and the National Security Council staffer at the White House who deals with the country are given regular reports, said two former senior intelligence officials, who spoke on condition of anonymity in discussing classified information.

Obama may not have been specifically briefed on NSA operations targeting a foreign leader's cellphone or email communications, one of the officials said. "But certainly the National Security Council and senior people across the intelligence community knew exactly what was going on, and to suggest otherwise is ridiculous."

If U.S. spying on key foreign leaders was news to the White House, current and former officials said, then White House officials have not been reading their briefing books.

Some U.S. intelligence officials said they were being blamed by the White House for conducting surveillance that was authorized under the law and utilized at the White House.

"People are furious," said a senior intelligence official who would not be identified discussing classified information. "This is officially the White House cutting off the intelligence community."

Any decision to spy on friendly foreign leaders is made with input from the State Department, which considers the political risk, the official said. Any useful intelligence is then given to the president's counter-terrorism advisor, Lisa Monaco, among other White House officials.

Jay Carney, the White House press secretary, said Monday that Obama had ordered a review of surveillance capabilities, including those affecting America's closest foreign partners and allies.

"Our review is looking across the board at our intelligence gathering to ensure that as we gather intelligence, we are properly accounting for both the security of our citizens and our allies and the privacy concerns shared by Americans and citizens around the world," Carney said.

Caitlin Hayden, spokeswoman for the National Security Council, said the review would examine "whether we have the appropriate posture when it comes to heads of state, how we coordinate with our closest allies and partners, and what further guiding principles or constraints might be appropriate for our efforts."

She said the review should be completed this year.

Citing documents from Snowden, the German news magazine Der Spiegel reported last week that the NSA's Special Collection Service had monitored Merkel's cellphone since 2002. Obama subsequently called Merkel and told her he was not aware her phone had been hacked, U.S. officials said.

Intelligence officials also disputed a Wall Street Journal article Monday that said the White House had learned only this summer — during a review of surveillance operations that might be exposed by Snowden — about an NSA program to monitor communications of 35 world leaders. Since then, officials said, several of the eavesdropping operations have been stopped because of political sensitivities.

Stobart is a news assistant in The Times' London bureau. Chicago Tribune writer Rick Pearson contributed to this report.

sky otter

  • Guest
Re: they know what you are doing
« Reply #359 on: October 29, 2013, 04:15:22 PM »

yep..just move along..nothing to see here

He suggested the outrage and surprise expressed by representatives of allies in recent days was naive or disingenuous

video at link

Spy chief Clapper: We've been snooping on our friends for years

By Tracy Connor, Staff Writer, NBC News
The nation's top intelligence official told Congress on Tuesday that the U.S. has been snooping on friendly foreign leaders for years, and getting spied on by allies in return.

As controversy swirled over reports that the National Security Agency monitored the calls of German Chancellor Angela Merkel and other world leaders, Director of National Intelligence James Clapper gave the impression he didn't know what all the fuss was about.

During a grilling by the House Intelligence Committee, Clapper said understanding "foreign leadership intentions" is one of NSA's basic goals.

"That's a hardy perennial as long as I have been in the intelligence business,” he said, explaining that the U.S. needs to make sure what allies are telling America matches what's going on behind the scenes.

Asked whether allies also spy on the U.S., Clapper was unequivocal: "Absolutely."

He suggested the outrage and surprise expressed by representatives of allies in recent days was naive or disingenuous and reminded him of a line from the movie "Casablanca."

"'My God, there's gambling going on here?' It's the same kind of thing," he said.

President Obama reportedly had to apologize to Merkel and to the presidents of France and Brazil after revelations about U.S. spying — disclosures that stem from former NSA and CIA contractor Edward Snowden's leaks of government documents.

As the White House tries to control the damage, Obama has promised a “complete review” of overseas spying operations and is reportedly considering whether to suspend monitoring of allies.

“What we've seen over the last several years is their capacities continue to develop and expand, and that's why I'm initiating now a review to make sure that what they're able to do doesn't necessarily mean what they should be doing," Obama said Monday in a televised interview.

NSA Director Gen. Keith Alexander said overseas reports that the U.S. had collected tens of millions of phone calls in France, Spain and other European nations were "false."

He said the data cited came from foreign service agencies — "collected in defense of our countries and in support of military operations" — and was not culled from European citizens.

Clapper and Alexander appeared before the committee hours after a bipartisan team of Congress members introduced a bill that would sharply curb the NSA's collection of American's phone data, legislation that is expected to face a fight from others who think it goes too far.

Several protesters wearing clown-size sunglasses with the words "Stop Spying" scrawled on the lenses sat behind the two spy bosses.

Both defended the data-sweeping program as lawful, aimed at foreign terrorists and successful in saving lives.

Clapper said he would support declassifying secret intelligence court orders to boost transparency and pointed to plans to hire a director of civil liberties and privacy. Alexander said an independent Senate-confirmed inspector general, one of the proposals the committee is considering, "won't hurt."

But Clapper also warned those looking to reform the NSA's activities that they must avoid “over-correcting.”

“We believe we have been lawful and that the rigorous oversight we’ve operated under has been effective,” Clapper said in his opening remarks.

“We do not spy on anyone except for valid foreign intelligence purposes and we do not violate the law.”

Clapper conceded “we have made mistakes,” blaming them on human error or technical problems and said there has been an “erosion of trust in the in the intelligence community.”

But he urged the lawmakers to be cautious in responding to the errors.

“As Americans, we face an unending array of threats to our way of life. We need to sustain our ability to detect these threats,” he said.

Months of leaks from Snowden are already “affecting our ability to conduct intelligence and keep our country safe,” he said.

Alexander struck a similar note in his testimony.

“It is much more important for this county that we defend this country and take the beating than it for us to give up a program that would prevent this nation from being attacked,” he said. USA, LLC
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