Saturday, July 18, 2015


XKEYSCORE, What is it? - the secret program run by the NSA on the World Wide Web that converts all the data it can see into searchable events like web pages loaded, files downloaded, forms submitted, emails and attachments sent, porn videos watched, TV shows streamed, and advertisements loaded, which demonstrates how Internet traffic can be even more sensitive than phone calls.

What does it do? - It collects in bulk virtually all of our phone metadata.  If you call a suicide prevention hotline, it hears your call, and converts your voice call into readable language. HIV testing services, phone sex services, advocacy groups for gun rights and for abortion rights, all recorded and noted. Calling your girlfriend while out of the house for a secret tryst?
Schedule a job interview without letting your current employer know? Long Distance calls? Most of us, at one point or another, have spent hours on the phone discussing the most intimate details about our lives. There isn’t anyone alive today who didn’t grow up with at least some access to a telephone, we understand them well.

But we don't quite get the internet, do we? We don't actually realize what we are telling that listener in a darkened room. Bulk collection of phone metadata is, without a doubt, a violation of your privacy, but bulk surveillance of internet traffic is orders of magnitude more invasive!
We inadvertently share even more intimate details through online searches. The NSA’s programs tap the Internet directly and collect data, illegally violating your right to privacy. If government wants to search or seize your data, they must have a warrant. The warrant can only be issued if they have probable cause, and the warrant must be specific. Meaning the searchers who want to go through your data, literally all of it, need to suspect you of something before being allowed to. That is the law. But as it stands right now, the government can simply gather everything you do on the internet, then look for a violation of some law, or just wait until you do commit a crime, or until they need to suspect you of one. We are talking about a different law here.

How does Xkeyscore and other surveillance programs do it? All internet traffic travels through an international lacy maze of routes throughout the world.
For instance, an email message sent from Abbotsford, BC to Vancouver begins in British Columbia and ends in Canada, yet is routed through San Jose, San Francisco, Kansas City and Chicago. An email sent from Moscow, Russia, passes off to Frankfurt, Germany then Stockholm, Sweden before reaching its destination a few miles away in Yaroslavl, Russia.
A message from Mexico to Washington might be hijacked and sent through London and Moscow before being read in Washington. After having been captured en route!
Angela Merkel, Chancellor of Germany is still pissed at the USA over them spying on her, as are most other European countries. Many are accusing the US of using their spying abilities to give private American companies the advantage on international contracts! Dilma Rouseff, President of Brazil, was so infuriated by NSA spying that she is laying her own TransAtlantic cable to Europe!

There can be intercept points anywhere. And in some cases, so called splitters are implanted along those electronic routes that siphon off copies of everything along the line. Just like a wire tap might do. Better because Xkeyscore doesn't get distracted. But wiretaps are medieval science compared to what happens today. The NSA is capable of collecting and storing all information traveling electronically from anywhere to anywhere every second of every day and stored in the new NSA facility in Utah. Where everything you have ever typed, and everything anyone else has ever typed about you, can be cross-referenced. The NSA can profile you better than your own mother.

And many other government agencies in the USA and your country too, are using these kinds of surveillance and collecting systems. PRISM is a government code name for a data-collection effort. It collects stored internet communications based on demands made to internet companies such as Google. your internet history! Documents indicate that PRISM is the number one source of raw intelligence used for NSA analytic reports, and it accounts for 91% of the NSA's internet traffic acquired! Finfisher is another that infiltrates your computer. And the Hacking Team sounds like someone who would hack government computers like Anonymous, but it is exactly the opposite, a private company selling software that that hacks YOU under a government's control. Any despotic regime who will buy it!  (do we still hate WikiLeaks when they recently hacked the Hacking Team and revealed flaws in that architecture and their nefarious deals?) And there are likely hundreds more electronics watching you now, in service of various government agencies. With enough cross-referencing to reveal your toe fungus!
Do a search, get collected. Even if your shaky fingers get the search wrong and you end up at Madame Meralda's House of Chains and Pains, that is now part of YOUR intimate internet history. The faulty-fingered keystroke will be remembered. Forever.

And quit that old dog about, "I have nothing to fear because I'm not doing anything wrong." You don't know who is defining 'wrong'! Apple said years ago it had never heard of Prism.  Sure, believe an Apple IT guy didn't KNOW? Unlikely. President Ronald Reagan in 1981 authorized foreign intelligence investigations. Every one knew. And didn't these corporate execs pay any attention to the Snowden revelations?

But it is not just Google. AT&T is cooperating with the illegal surveillance. Undisputed documents show that AT&T installed a fiberoptic splitter at its facility in San Francisco that makes copies of all emails, web browsing and other Internet traffic to and from AT&T customers and provides those copies to the NSA.
But that is not new, General David Sarnoff, in 1941 as President of the Radio Corporation of America, agreed to illegally pass on all Japanese Consulate cable messages to Naval Intelligence.

A FISA court (Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court) order demands Verizon turn over all customer phone records including who is talking to whom, when and for how long to the NSA. This metadata, especially when collected in bulk and aggregated, allows the government to track the associations of various political and religious organizations. Praise the Lord? Maybe not. Vote for who? Dangerous.
FISA courts are held in complete secret. You do NOT get a lawyer. You do NOT question witnesses. You cannot cross-examine. You cannot verify the evidence against you. And you do not face your accuser.

The world's largest internet brands are claimed to be part of the information-sharing program since its introduction in 2007/ Microsoft, Yahoo, Facebook, PalTalk, AOL, Skype etc.  Collectively, these companies cover the vast majority of online email, search, video and communications networks.

Think a new US president would be different? The NSA access was enabled by changes to US surveillance law introduced under President Bush and renewed under President Obama in December 2012. Who can you trust?

And do you still believe these government snoops are keeping you safe? The standard buzz-phrase for all this finaglery. The chief of the NSA, General Keith Alexander, after being pressed by the Senate Judiciary Committee at an oversight hearing, admitted that the number of terrorist plots foiled by the NSA gathering of every single phone call made in or to America was only one or perhaps two. (after others glibly told us there were 54) So after gathering possibly trillions of bytes about what we are doing, all that stolen info translated into only two plots?
(They are now gathering info in Exabytes, which is a 1, followed by 18 zeros. And amounts to all words ever spoken by human beings!)

Remember those movies about Moscow or East Berlin during the Cold War? Where you went out to a park and whispered to your friend to avoid bugs planted in your own apartment by the Stasi?
It is almost here folks, and you're not the handsome third-man Orson Wells disappearing into the murky black shadows in Vienna. Nothing glamorous about losing your freedom. Now the shadowy figure in your movie hiding in between the cracks on your keyboard is called Xkeyscore. And it is looking out at you through your own webcam and listening to what you say and recording where you go on the electronic media.

You're the victim. Don't meet under trees or on park benches, they're probably already there.

Source of some info: Micah Lee, The Intercept. 

The Intercept    The news service of investigative journalist Glenn Greenwald.
Citizen Four streaming   Laura Poitras'  academy award winning documentary about Edward Snowden.
thoughtmaybe  Plenty of browsing here.

Friday, July 10, 2015

From Blacklisted News

 Posted by Blacklisted News, July 10, 2015. 

Document shows CIA reaction to finding no WMDs in Iraq.

The National Security Archive has posted several newly available documents, one of them an account by Charles Duelfer of the search he led in Iraq for weapons of mass destruction, with a staff of 1,700 and the resources of the U.S. military.
Duelfer was appointed by CIA Director George Tenet to lead a massive search after an earlier massive search led by David Kay had determined that there were no WMD stockpiles in Iraq. Duelfer went to work in January 2004, to find nothing for a second time, on behalf of people who had launched a war knowing full well that their own statements about WMDs were not true.
The fact that Duelfer states quite clearly that he found none of the alleged WMD stockpiles cannot be repeated enough, with 42% of Americans (and 51 percent of Republicans) still believing the opposite.
A New York Times story last October about the remnants of a long-abandoned chemical weapons program has been misused and abused to advance misunderstanding. A search of Iraq today would find U.S. cluster bombs that were dropped a decade back, without of course finding evidence of a current operation.
Duelfer is also clear that Saddam Hussein’s government had accurately denied having WMD, contrary to a popular U.S. myth that Hussein had pretended to have what he did not.
The fact that President George W. Bush, Vice President Dick Cheney, and their team knowingly lied cannot be overemphasized. This group took the testimony of Hussein Kamel regarding weapons he’d said had been destroyed years ago, and used it as if he’d said they currently existed. This team used forged documents to allege a uranium purchase. They used claims about aluminum tubes that had been rejected by all of their own usual experts. They “summarized” a National Intelligence Estimate that said Iraq was unlikely to attack unless attacked to say nearly the opposite in a “white paper” released to the public. Colin Powell took claims to the U.N. that had been rejected by his own staff, and touched them up with fabricated dialogue.
Senate Select Committee on Intelligence Chairman Jay Rockefeller concluded that, “In making the case for war, the Administration repeatedly presented intelligence as fact when in reality it was unsubstantiated, contradicted, or even nonexistent.”
On January 31, 2003, Bush suggested to Blair that they could paint an airplane with U.N. colors, fly it low to get it shot at, and thereby start the war. Then the two of them walked out to a press conference at which they said they would avoid war if at all possible. Troop deployments and bombing missions were already underway.
When Diane Sawyer asked Bush on television why he had made the claims he had about Iraq’s
George always did need hand holding.
supposed weapons of mass destruction, he replied: “What’s the difference? The possibility that [Saddam] could acquire weapons, if he were to acquire weapons, he would be the danger.”
Duelfer’s newly released internal report on his hunt, and that of Kay before him, for the figments of propagandists’ imagination refers to “Saddam Hussein’s WMD program,” which Duelfer treats as an on-again, off-again institution, as if the 2003 invasion had just caught it in one of its naturally cyclical low tides of non-existence. Duelfer also describes the nonexistent program as “an international security problem that vexed the world for three decades,” — except perhaps for the part of the world engaged in the largest public demonstrations in history, which rejected the U.S. case for war.
Duelfer openly states that his goal was to rebuild “confidence in intelligence projections of threat.” Of course, having found no WMDs, he can’t alter the inaccuracy of the “projections of threat.” Or can he? What Duelfer did publicly at the time and does again here is to claim, without providing any evidence for it, that “Saddam was directing resources to sustain the capacity to recommence producing WMD once U.N. sanctions and international scrutiny collapsed.”
Duelfer claims that former Saddam yes men, rigorously conditioned to say whatever would most please their questioner, had assured him that Saddam harbored these secret intentions to start rebuilding WMD someday. But, Duelfer admits, “there is no documentation of this objective. And analysts should not expect to find any.”
So, in Duelfer’s rehabilitation of the “intelligence community” that may soon be trying to sell you another “projection of threat” (a phrase that perfectly fits what a Freudian would say they were doing), the U.S. government invaded Iraq, devastated a society, killed upwards of a million people by best estimates, wounded, traumatized, and made homeless millions more, generated hatred for the United States, drained the U.S. economy, stripped away civil liberties back home, and laid the groundwork for the creation of ISIS, as a matter not of “preempting” an “imminent threat” but of preempting a secret plan to possibly begin constructing a future threat should circumstances totally change.
This conception of “preemptive defense” is identical to two other concepts. It’s identical to the justifications we’ve been offered recently for drone strikes. And it’s identical to aggression. Once “defense” has been stretched to include defense against theoretical future threats, it ceases to credibly distinguish itself from aggression.
And yet Duelfer seems to believe he succeeded in his assignment.

© Blacklisted News 2015
58% of us could see what was happening at the time between George Bush and Saddam Hussein, and without prompting, only reading and looking for ourselves, could pose the questions and filter out truth from the non-answers. It amounted to a coup of the United States Government and the future subjugation of the American people.

The USA PATRIOT Act is an Act of Congress that was signed into law by President George W. Bush
on October 26, 2001. Its title is a ten-letter backronym (USA PATRIOT) that stands for "Uniting and Strengthening America by Providing Appropriate Tools Required to Intercept and Obstruct Terrorism Act of 2001".

The HSA (Homeland Security Act) was cosponsored by 118 members of Congress, it was signed into law by President George W. Bush in November 2002. HSA created the United States Department of Homeland Security and the new cabinet-level position of Secretary of Homeland Security. It is the largest federal government reorganization since the Department of Defense was created via the National Security Act of 1947. It also includes many of the organizations under which the powers of the USA Patriot Act are exercised.

Charles Duelfer