NY Times Reveals NSA Searches All Emails In & Out Of The US; Will It Offer Up Its Source For Prosecution?
from the just-wondering dept
The National Security Agency is searching the contents of vast amounts of Americans’ e-mail and text communications into and out of the country, hunting for people who mention information about foreigners under surveillance, according to intelligence officials.Again this is the kind of thing that many people had assumed was going on, but it hadn't been confirmed until now. Of course, the NSA's response was not to talk about whether or not this was true, but to claim, yet again, that everything it's doing is "authorized," which is a way of deflecting the fact that it's almost certainly unconstitutional. In this case, the claim is that the NSA isn't storing these emails, but rather: "temporarily copying and then sifting through the contents of what is apparently most e-mails and other text-based communications that cross the border," and the whole process only takes "a small number of seconds" before the records are deleted.
The N.S.A. is not just intercepting the communications of Americans who are in direct contact with foreigners targeted overseas, a practice that government officials have openly acknowledged. It is also casting a far wider net for people who cite information linked to those foreigners, like a little used e-mail address, according to a senior intelligence official.
This report raises a whole bunch of issues, but let's focus on two of them:
- Right, so remember that last post, where Barack Obama claimed that there is no domestic spying program? Yeah, so about that... Here's a bit more evidence of just what a lie that is.
- Here's the bigger one, though. Just yesterday, the NY Times published an astounding editorial that suggests that the US should punish Russia for not sending Ed Snowden back. It is effectively calling for the prosecution of a key whistleblower concerning NSA surveillance.
So, I'm wondering, does the NY Times editorial board believe that Charlie Savage's source -- who is revealing information not unlike that which Snowden revealed -- shouldn't be protected, should be revealed and should be prosecuted? Because I would imagine that both Savage and that source would find that very uncomfortable. At this point, if you're a government whistleblower, why would you ever go to a reporter at the NY Times when they're supportive of prosecuting sources and whistleblowers?