Spitfire List Web site and blog of anti-fascist researcher and radio personality Dave Emory.

For The Record  

FTR #767 The Adventures of Eddie the Friendly Spook, Part 11: The Destabilization of the NSA and GCHQ

Dave Emory’s entire life­time of work is avail­able on a flash drive that can be obtained here. (The flash drive includes the anti-fascist books avail­able on this site.)

Listen: MP3

Side 1  Side 2   (NB: Side 1 is mis-introduced as “FTR #766, not 767.” Note, also, that the date is 1/5/2014, not 1/5/2013.)

Introduction: Previously, we have noted that Edward Snowden’s activities make no sense in terms of a struggle for civil liberties, free speech, upholding the Bill of Rights or anything of the sort. Snowden is a spook on a very obvious intelligence “op.” (See FTR #762.)

Snowden is also a fascist, inextrticably linked with a milieu that favors slavery, justifies the Confederate States of America, wants the South to secede again, doesn’t think women should be allowed to vote, and is explicitly opposed to democracy. (See FTR #756.)

In the context of Snowden’s actions as an intelligence operation, this broadcast underscores the apparent destabilization of the NSA and the British GCHQ.

The broadcast begins by analyzing L’Affaire Snowden as a destabilization operation against Obama. A recent lawsuit against the NSA about its spying operations was brought by Larry Klayman, who is far more than just the “conservative” that he is labeled. Klayman is an extreme right-winger who called on the “Muslim” Obama to put down the “Quran” and come out of the White House with his hands up!

The judge who ruled favorably on Klayman’s suit was appointed by George W. Bush. A loyal Bush family running dog, Leon helped cover-up the Iran-Contra scandal, the October Surprise and was involved with the destabilization of the Clinton administration over the non-existent Whitewater “crimes.”

Highlighting the destabilization of the NSA, we note that Snowden’s data theft was so mas­sive that NSA may never know just how much infor­ma­tion he took.

Snowden’s vast doc­u­ment theft make NO sense in terms of pro­tec­tion of per­sonal pri­vacy or civil lib­er­ties. It appears that his “data dump” (perhaps as many as 1.7 million documents) would per­mit a would-be male­fac­tor to defeat NSA sur­veil­lance. Pur­loin­ing files on the mil­i­tary capa­bil­i­ties of for­eign coun­tries and the per­sonal lives of GCHQ oper­a­tives (which Snowden has done) has noth­ing to do with civil liberties. Snowden’s “op” is a hos­tile counter-intelligence operation.

It is worth noting that Snowden could not possibly have reviewed all of the documents he purloined. He appears to have been directed by some very knowledgeable people, as well as being assisted in his international flight.

Among the most dev­as­tat­ing con­se­quences of L’Affaire Snow­den may be the prevention of an effec­tive cyberde­fense. The results of this could be truly catastrophic.

One of the most important elements of the analysis highlights a reveal­ing arti­cle in Der Spiegel The story notes two VERY impor­tant things: the same Angela Merkel who is “shocked, shocked” at what the NSA is doing has not only put road­blocks in Euro­pean data pri­vacy rules designed to guard against unwar­ranted gov­ern­ment sur­veil­lance, but is actively seek­ing admit­tance to the “Five Eyes” club, which dates to World War II!

She’s not “shocked, shocked” at all! She wants access to the Five Eyes, which means–DUH–that she APPROVES of this very thing! Germany and the BND may very well be, in effect, holding American internet business hostage to inclusion in the “Five Eyes” club.

Program Highlights Include:

  • France’s decision to ramp-up its electronic surveillance program with no judicial oversight, to speak of.
  • Obama’s dilemma over satisfying the needs of national security or the internet companies, which favor privatizing metadata retention, in keeping with the recommendations of the Presidential panel weighing changes.
  • Former NSA chief Michael Hayden’s view that privatizing the storage of metadata would make it less secure than having the NSA do it. He also notes that the Fourth Amendment is not an international treaty and doesn’t apply to foreign citizens.
  • Glenn Greenwald’s husband David Miranda was intercepted at Heathrow Airport with sensitive documents containing information about Brtitish intelligence officers’ personal lives and families. That, too, has NOTHING to do with civil liberties, privacy, etc. It is hostile counterintelligence.
  • Contrary to Greenwald and Miranda’s previous statements, Miranda has been deeply involved with the handling of NSA documents.
  • Larry Klayman’s role in the Whitewater destabilization of Bill Clinton. Judge Leon was also involved with the Whitewater affair.
  • Review of National Alliance leader and founder William Luther Pierce’s 1998 foreshadowing of the 9/11 attacks. (The National Alliance was one of Glenn Greenwald’s Nazi clients when he was an attorney.)
  • Review of the fact that the climactic episode of The Turner Diaries is a low-level, suicide aerial attack on the Pentagon.
  • Both The Turner Diaries and Serpent’s Walk–both published by Greenwald’s client The National Alliance–feature a Nazi takeover of the United States after the country is destroyed by a series of WMD terrorist attacks. Before that could happen, one would have to neutralize the NSA, something that Snowden’s documents would permit a malefactor to do. THINK ABOUT IT!
  • UPDATE: Angela Merkel has proposed an EU-wide communications system to counteract NSA and GCHQ spying, even as Germany ramps up its own counter-intelligence and spying activities.

1a. Beginning with review of material covered years ago on For The Record, the program notes that the information about NSA and GCHQ hoovering up electronic communications is not new. (Mr. Emory has been discussing this for years, referencing the analysis from open sources.) A New York Times article from 9/6/2001 highlights a European Parliament report that was compiled over the course of a year. The report notes, among other things, that several European countries were doing similar things.

“World Brief­ing | Europe: Report On U.S. Spy Sys­tem” by Suzanne Daley; The New York Times; 9/6/2001.

[Notice when this was published–9/6/2001.–D.E.] . . . The United States-led spy­ing sys­tem known as Ech­e­lon can mon­i­tor vir­tu­ally every com­mu­ni­ca­tion in the world — by e-mail, phone or fax — that bounces off a satel­lite, the Euro­pean Par­lia­ment was told. But in report­ing on a year­long study of the sys­tem that was prompted by con­cern that Amer­i­can com­pa­nies were using data from the sys­tem to gain a com­pet­i­tive edge, Ger­hard Schmid, a Ger­man mem­ber of the Par­lia­ment, said that many Euro­pean coun­tries had sim­i­lar abil­i­ties . . .

1b. Supplementing FTR #762, we note, again, the extreme right-wing nature of the forces underlying Snowden’s “Op.” This part of the broadcast supplements that program, analyzing L’Affaire Snowden as a destabilization operation against Obama. A recent lawsuit against the NSA about its spying operations was brought by Larry Klayman, who is far more than just the “conservative” that he is labeled. Klayman is an extreme right-winger who called on the “Muslim” Obama to put down the “Quran” and come out of the White House with his hands up!

“Rallier tells Obama to ‘put the Quran down’ ” by Ashley Killough and Shannon Travis and Brian Rokus; CNN; 10/13/2013.

Angered by the closure of national landmarks due to the partial government shutdown, a crowd of conservatives removed barricades Sunday at the World War II Memorial and the Lincoln Memorial as they rallied against President Barack Obama and Democrats for their role in the ongoing stalemate.

High-profile speakers with close ties to the tea party appeared at the event, including former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin and Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas. . . .

. . . . One speaker went as far as saying the president was a Muslim and separately urged the crowd of hundreds to initiate a peaceful uprising.

“I call upon all of you to wage a second American nonviolent revolution, to use civil disobedience, and to demand that this president leave town, to get up, to put the Quran down, to get up off his knees, and to figuratively come out with his hands up,” said Larry Klayman of Freedom Watch, a conservative political advocacy group. . . .”

2. Klayman and Judge Leon (discussed below) worked together on the Whitewater destabilization of Clinton.

“Larry Klayman, Conservative Attack Dog, Slams Fox News And Bush” by Marcus Baram; Huffington Post; 3/18/2010.

. . . . the fastest trigger finger in D.C. when it comes to filing legal briefs, the founder of Judicial Watch is best known for playing an instrumental role in fueling the Whitewater crisis that drowned President Clinton in multiple scandals. . . .

3. The judge who ruled favorably on Klayman’s suit was appointed by George W. Bush. His name is Richard J. Leon, and we will see more about him below.

“Judge Ques­tions Legal­ity of N.S.A. Phone Records” by Charlie Savage; The New York Times; 12/16/2013.

A fed­eral dis­trict judge ruled on Mon­day that the National Secu­rity Agency pro­gram that is sys­tem­at­i­cally keep­ing records of all Amer­i­cans’ phone calls most likely vio­lates the Con­sti­tu­tion, describ­ing its tech­nol­ogy as “almost Orwellian” and sug­gest­ing that James Madi­son would be “aghast” to learn that the gov­ern­ment was encroach­ing on lib­erty in such a way.

Judge Richard J. Leon of the Dis­trict of Colum­bia ordered the gov­ern­ment to stop col­lect­ing data on the per­sonal calls of the two plain­tiffs in the case and to destroy the records of their call­ing his­tory. But the judge, appointed to the bench in 2002 by Pres­i­dent George W. Bush, stayed his injunc­tion “in light of the sig­nif­i­cant national secu­rity inter­ests at stake in this case and the nov­elty of the con­sti­tu­tional issues,” allow­ing the gov­ern­ment time to appeal it, a mat­ter that he said could take at least six months. The case is the first in which a fed­eral judge who is not on the For­eign Intel­li­gence Sur­veil­lance Court, which autho­rized the once-secret pro­gram, has exam­ined the bulk data col­lec­tion on behalf of some­one who is not a crim­i­nal defen­dant.

The Jus­tice Depart­ment has said that 15 sep­a­rate judges on the sur­veil­lance court have held on 35 occa­sions that the call­ing data pro­gram is legal. It also marks the first suc­cess­ful legal chal­lenge brought against the pro­gram since it was revealed in June after leaks by the for­mer N.S.A. con­trac­tor Edward J. Snowden. . . . .

. . . .. . . . “I acted on my belief that the N.S.A.’s mass surveillance programs would not withstand a constitutional challenge, and that the American public deserved a chance to see these issues determined by open courts,” Mr. Snowden said in his statement. It was distributed by Glenn Greenwald, a journalist who received leaked documents from Mr. Snowden and wrote the first article about the bulk data collection. “Today, a secret program authorized by a secret court was, when exposed to the light of day, found to violate Americans’ rights,” the statement said. “It is the first of many.” . . . .

. . . . The case was brought by sev­eral plain­tiffs led by Larry Klay­man, a con­ser­v­a­tive legal activist. Mr. Klay­man, who rep­re­sented him­self and the other plain­tiffs, said in an inter­view on Mon­day that he was seek­ing to turn the case into a class action on behalf of all Amer­i­cans. “I’m extremely grat­i­fied that Judge Leon had the courage to make this rul­ing,” he said. “He is an Amer­i­can hero.” . . . .

4. A loyal Bush family running dog, Leon helped cover-up the Iran-Contra scandal, the October Surprise and was involved with the destabilization of the Clinton administration over the non-existent Whitewater “crimes.”

“Who Is Judge Richard Leon?” by Robert Parry; Con­sor­tium News; 11/9/2011.

. . . Leon was appointed to his life­time judi­cial post by George W. Bush in 2002 after Leon had “earned” the grat­i­tude of the Bush Fam­ily by pro­tect­ing its inter­ests as an aggres­sive and reli­able Repub­li­can legal appa­ratchik on Capi­tol Hill. There, the heavy-set Leon gained a rep­u­ta­tion as a par­ti­san bully who made sure polit­i­cally charged inves­ti­ga­tions reached a desired out­come, what­ever the facts.

In the 1990s, Leon served as spe­cial coun­sel to the House Bank­ing Com­mit­tee as it trans­formed Pres­i­dent Bill Clinton’s minor White­wa­ter real estate deal into a major scan­dal that even­tu­ally led to the House vote to impeach Clin­ton in 1998 and thus set the stage for Bush’s dis­puted elec­tion vic­tory in 2000.

How­ever, Leon’s most impor­tant work for the Bushes may have come in the 1980s and early 1990s when he helped con­struct legal jus­ti­fi­ca­tions for Repub­li­can law-breaking and sought to intim­i­date Iran-Contra-related wit­nesses who came for­ward to expose GOP wrongdoing.

In 1987, when Rep. Dick Cheney, R-Wyoming, was lead­ing the Repub­li­can coun­terof­fen­sive against the Iran-Contra inves­ti­ga­tion into evi­dence that Pres­i­dent Ronald Rea­gan and Vice Pres­i­dent George H.W. Bush had engaged in a wide-ranging con­spir­acy involv­ing ille­gal weapons ship­ments and money trans­fers, Leon stepped for­ward as deputy chief coun­sel on the Repub­li­can side.

Leon worked with Cheney not only in fend­ing off accu­sa­tions of wrong­do­ing, but in com­ing up with a counter-argument that accused Con­gress of intrud­ing on for­eign pol­icy pre­rog­a­tives of the President.

“Con­gres­sional actions to limit the Pres­i­dent in this area … should be reviewed with a con­sid­er­able degree of skep­ti­cism,” the Repub­li­can minor­ity report said. “If they inter­fere with the core pres­i­den­tial for­eign pol­icy func­tions, they should be struck down.”

In 2005 as vice pres­i­dent, Cheney harkened back to that Iran-Contra minor­ity report in defend­ing George W. Bush’s asser­tion of unlim­ited pres­i­den­tial pow­ers dur­ing wartime.

“If you want ref­er­ence to an obscure text, go look at the minor­ity views that were filed with the Iran-Contra com­mit­tee,” Cheney told a reporter. Cheney said those old argu­ments “are very good in lay­ing out a robust view of the president’s pre­rog­a­tives with respect to the con­duct of espe­cially for­eign pol­icy and national secu­rity matters.”

So, one could say that Richard Leon was there at the birth of what became George W. Bush’s impe­r­ial presidency.

Cover-up of Crimes

But Leon’s cru­cial work went beyond build­ing a legal frame­work for Repub­li­can pres­i­dents to ignore the law. More sig­nif­i­cantly, he con­ducted cover-ups of their crimes.

In 1992, when a House task force was exam­in­ing evi­dence that Rea­gan and Bush began their secret con­tacts with Iran in 1980 while try­ing to unseat Pres­i­dent Jimmy Carter, Leon was the Repub­li­can point man to make sure noth­ing too dam­ag­ing came out. Leon served as chief minor­ity coun­sel to the House task force inves­ti­gat­ing the so-called Octo­ber Sur­prise allegations.

5. France is ramping up its already formidable electronic surveillance capability, with no substantive judicial oversight!

“France Broadens Its Surveillance Power” by Scott Sayare; The New York Times; 12/15/2013.

For all their indignation last summer, when the scope of the United States’ mass data collection began to be made public, the French are hardly innocents in the realm of electronic surveillance. Within days of the reports about the National Security Agency’s activities, it was revealed that French intelligence services operated a similar system, with similarly minimal oversight.

And last week, with little public debate, the legislature approved a law that critics feared would markedly expand electronic surveillance of French residents and businesses.

The provision, quietly passed as part of a routine military spending bill, defines the conditions under which intelligence agencies may gain access to, or record telephone conversations, e-mails, Internet activity, personal location data and other electronic communications.

The law provides for no judicial oversight and allows electronic surveillance for a broad range of purposes, including “national security,” the protection of France’s “scientific and economic potential” and prevention of “terrorism” or “criminality.” . . . .

6a. Snowden’s data theft was so massive that NSA may never know just how much information he took.

“Officials Say U.S. May Never Know Extent of Snowden’s Leaks” by Mark Mazzetti and Michael S. Schmidt; The New York Times; 12/14/2013.

American intelligence and law enforcement investigators have concluded that they may never know the entirety of what the former National Security Agency contractor Edward J. Snowden extracted from classified government computers before leaving the United States, according to senior government officials.

Investigators remain in the dark about the extent of the data breach partly because the N.S.A. facility in Hawaii where Mr. Snowden worked — unlike other N.S.A. facilities — was not equipped with up-to-date software that allows the spy agency to monitor which corners of its vast computer landscape its employees are navigating at any given time.

Six months since the investigation began, officials said Mr. Snowden had further covered his tracks by logging into classified systems using the passwords of other security agency employees, as well as by hacking firewalls installed to limit access to certain parts of the system. . . .

6b. Snowden’s vast document theft make NO sense in terms of protection of personal privacy or civil liberties. It appears that his “data dump” of some 1.7 million documents would permit a would-be malefactor to defeat NSA surveillance. Purloining files on the military capabilities of foreign countries and the personal lives of GCHQ operatives (which Snowden has done) have nothing to do with civil liberties.

Note that there is NO WAY that Snowden could possibly have reviewed all 1.7 million documents.

Snowden’s “op” is a hostile counter-intelligence operation.

“Snow­den Still Hold­ing ‘Keys to the King­dom’ ” by Wal­ter Pin­cus; The Wash­ing­ton Post; 12/18/2013.

We’ve yet to see the full impact of for­mer National Secu­rity Agency con­trac­tor Edward Snowden’s unau­tho­rized down­load­ing of highly clas­si­fied intel­li­gence documents.

Among the roughly 1.7 mil­lion doc­u­ments he walked away with — the vast major­ity of which have not been made pub­lic — are highly sen­si­tive, spe­cific intel­li­gence reports, as well as cur­rent and his­toric require­ments the White House has given the agency to guide its col­lec­tion activ­i­ties, accord­ing to a senior gov­ern­ment offi­cial with knowl­edge of the situation.

The lat­ter cat­e­gory involves about 2,000 unique task­ings that can run to 20 pages each and give rea­sons for selec­tive tar­get­ing to NSA col­lec­tors and ana­lysts. These orders alone may run 31,500 pages.

If dis­closed, that infor­ma­tion would reveal vul­ner­a­bil­i­ties within U. S. intel­li­gence gath­er­ing at the strate­gic level, the offi­cial said.

Where the copies of these sen­si­tive task­ing doc­u­ments are is an unan­swered question.

Snow­den, in Hong Kong, dis­trib­uted NSA doc­u­ments dur­ing the first week in June to three jour­nal­ists — Glenn Green­wald, doc­u­men­tary film­maker Laura Poitras and Bar­ton Gell­man. Gellman’s sto­ries based on them have been pub­lished in The Wash­ing­ton Post.

Snow­den went pub­lic June 9, after the first sto­ries appeared. Then he went into hiding.

On June 24, the South China Morn­ing Post pub­lished a story based on a June 12 inter­view with Snow­den in which he indi­cated that he had more doc­u­ments to leak. “If I have time to go through this infor­ma­tion, I would like to make it avail­able to jour­nal­ists in each coun­try to make their own assess­ment, inde­pen­dent of my bias, as to whether or not the knowl­edge of U.S. net­work oper­a­tions against their peo­ple should be pub­lished,” Snow­den was quoted as saying.

On July 14, the Asso­ci­ated Press pub­lished a story in which Green­wald said that Snow­den — then in Moscow at the air­port — had “lit­er­ally thou­sands of doc­u­ments” that con­sti­tute “basi­cally the instruc­tion man­ual for how the NSA is built.” Green­wald, who said he had spo­ken to Snow­den hours ear­lier, told the AP that in order to prove his cred­i­bil­ity Snow­den “had to take ones that included very sen­si­tive, detailed blue­prints of how the NSA does what they do.”

These doc­u­ments, Green­wald said, “would allow some­body who read them to know exactly how the NSA does what it does, which would in turn allow them to evade that sur­veil­lance or repli­cate it.”

But, Green­wald added, Snow­den had insisted they not be made pub­lic. On July 19, Green­wald told Ger­man pub­lic broad­caster ARD that Snow­den in June in Hong Kong had given him and Poitras about 9,000 to 10,000 top-secret documents.

On Oct. 17, the New York Times’ James Risen pub­lished a story based on an inter­view with Snow­den in which he said he did not take any NSA doc­u­ments with him to Rus­sia, where he now has a year-long res­i­dency permit.

Green­wald recently told ABC News, “We pub­lished only a small frac­tion of the ones that we have been given so far because we have gone through each of them and made sure that noth­ing we are pub­lish­ing endan­gers human lives.”

Still, there are “a lot of very sig­nif­i­cant sto­ries that are yet to be reported,” he said dur­ing an inter­view for an ABC News spe­cial to be aired this month.

So where are the task­ing doc­u­ments? I’ve not asked Gell­man, Green­wald or Poitras because were I in their posi­tions I would not say one way or the other.

The NSA’s Led­gett con­sid­ers them so impor­tant that the secu­rity of those doc­u­ments is worth hav­ing a dis­cus­sion with Snow­den about amnesty.

“My per­sonal view is, yes, it’s worth hav­ing a con­ver­sa­tion about. I would need assur­ances that the remain­der of the data could be secured, and my bar for those assur­ances would be very high,” Led­gett said. . . .

7. Among the most devastating consequences of L’Affaire Snowden may be the neutralization of an effective cyberdefense. The results of this could be truly catastrophic.

“N.S.A. Leaks Make Plan for Cyberdefense Unlikely” by David E. Sanger; The New York Times; 8/13/2013.

Even while rapidly expanding its electronic surveillance around the world, the National Security Agency has lobbied inside the government to deploy the equivalent of a “Star Wars” defense for America’s computer networks, designed to intercept cyberattacks before they could cripple power plants, banks or financial markets.

But administration officials say the plan, championed by Gen. Keith B. Alexander, the director of the National Security Agency and head of the Pentagon’s Cyber Command, has virtually no chance of moving forward given the backlash against the N.S.A. over the recent disclosures about its surveillance programs.

Senior agency officials concede that much of the technology needed to filter malicious software, known as malware, by searching incoming messages for signs of programs designed to steal data, or attack banks or energy firms, is strikingly similar to the technology the N.S.A. already uses for surveillance.

“The plan was always a little vague, at least as Keith described it, but today it may be Snowden’s biggest single victim,” one senior intelligence official said recently, referring to Edward J. Snowden, the former N.S.A. contractor who released documents revealing details of many of the agency’s surveillance programs.

“Whatever trust was there is now gone,” the official added. “I mean, who would believe the N.S.A. when it insists it is blocking Chinese attacks but not using the same technology to read your e-mail?” . . . .

8. Snowden also purloined scores of thousands of files on the British GCHQ, including information about British intelligence officers and their families. This, too, is not something that can be justified by concerns for “civil liberties.” This is hostile counterintelligence.

“David Miranda Accused of Carrying Secrets that Threatened Spies’ Lives. This Looks Bad for Glenn” by Tim Stanley; The Telegraph; 8/20/2013.

Remember that a couple of weeks ago Glenn Greenwald’s husband was stopped at Heathrow airport, detained and had his electronic equipment seized? Well, we now have some idea of what was on it – and it doesn’t make Glenn look good.

The high court has just granted the police powers to pursue an investigation into possible crimes of terrorism and breaches of the Official Secrets Act as a result of analysing some of the data taken from Miranda. And what was that data? The Government’s accessed just a small portion of an astonishing 58,000 pages of intelligence documents and, according to a witness statement by Oliver Robbins, deputy national security adviser to the Cabinet, it includes: “personal information of UK intelligence officers, any compromise of which would result in a risk to their lives and those of their family members.” Robbins argued that if this data had got into the public sphere then it would have made spies and their loved ones vulnerable to attack or recruitment by hostile forces. He said that the material was, “highly likely to describe techniques which have been crucial in life-saving counter-terrorist operations, and other intelligence activities vital to UK national security.” Compromising it “would do serious damage to UK national security and ultimately risk lives”. The Government will now seek to discover if that compromise has taken place.

Miranda’s lawyer said in reply that, “Mr Miranda does not accept the assertions they have made.” Presumably, this means that he does not accept the assertion that the data he was carrying threatened UK national security and even the lives of its operatives. Yet this somewhat contradicts something Miranda told The Guardian two weeks ago. Back then, he said, “I don’t look at documents. I don’t even know if it was documents that I was carrying.” So if he didn’t look at the documents, how can he know that they didn’t include the kind of information that the UK Government alleges? . . . .

9. Greenwald and his husband, David Miranda, have been less than candid with regard to Miranda’s portage of information through Heathrow. Portrayed as a “martyr to the cause” by the media, Miranda has–contrary to his and Greenwald’s previous statements–been deeply involved with Greenwald’s activities, according to his latest statements.

This sheds further light on Werner Achatz, Greenwald’s partner for 11 years and law partner during the period in which he was running legal interference for Nazi murderers.

“Greenwald’s Partner David Miranda Profiled at Buzzfeed, with a Radically Different Story” by Charles Johnson; Little Green Footballs; 6/21/2013.

This new Buzzfeed article on Glenn Greenwald’s partner David Miranda is obviously intended to be supportive, but it could end up sabotaging Miranda’s own case with the British government — because in the course of trying to prove that Miranda was not a “mule,” author Natasha Vargas-Cooper actually ends up exposing another blatant series of lies by Greenwald and Miranda about Miranda’s detention at Heathrow Airport: David Miranda Is Nobody’s Errand Boy.

After I spent several weeks with Miranda and Greenwald in and around their home in the upscale, artist-friendly Rio neighborhood of Gavea over the last month, one thing has become very clear: David Miranda knew exactly what he was doing. To believe he was played as some type of dupe or mule by Greenwald not only ignores the real nature of their relationship but also assumes that there’s some safer way to transport sensitive documents across the globe. Is there any device more fail-safe and secure than the person you love the most? Does Apple make that sort of product?

Miranda knew very well that he was traveling from Rio to Berlin to see Greenwald’s reporting partner, documentarian Laura Poitras, and that he would be returning through the U.K., all the time carrying a heavily encrypted flash drive directly related to the trove of documents that former and now notorious CIA employee Edward Snowden had vacuumed from the National Security Agency and had given to Greenwald earlier in the year.

The sections I’ve set in bold text are very interesting, given these statements by Miranda and Greenwald when they were interviewed by CNN’s Anderson Cooper shortly after the incident . . . .

. . . . COOPER: David, I know you — you had said that they took a laptop, memory sticks, an external hard drive, your cell phone and more. Do you know what were stored on those devices? What — were there — was there classified material?

MIRANDA: I don’t know that. I mean I was just taking the file — those materials back to Glenn. I mean, you know, Glenn, being working with a lot of stories along the years, I didn’t quite follow everything that he writes every day. I can’t follow him because I have to have a life. And I mean I can’t know everything that he’s been working with.

So back in August, Miranda and Greenwald were playing it as if Miranda were completely ignorant of what he was carrying. He “didn’t follow” everything Greenwald writes, because he had his own life. Documents? What documents?

Both of them seem to be slightly smirking in this video, like they were sharing some kind of secret joke at Anderson Cooper’s expense — and they were. Because today, Miranda’s story is radically different:

“I have been involved in every aspect of Glenn’s life, why wouldn’t I be a part of this?” Miranda asserts over lunch at a fashion mall in Rio’s São Conrado neighborhood the next afternoon. “I think what Snowden did was heroic. Glenn and Laura’s reporting is so important. It caused a serious debate about privacy and internet freedom in my country and around the world. I’m so proud to be able to play any role at all in that. I’d go to jail for that.”


“Glenn and I have talked all the time about what doing these stories would do to our lives. Since we met, I’ve pushed him and supported him,” Miranda says. He starts counting on his fingers: “I’ve helped him negotiate contracts; I make sure he gets paid what he deserves — Glenn just wants to work and sometimes will do it for cheap.” Miranda’s list continues with ascending urgency. “When Glenn publishes NSA stories in foreign countries, I help reach out to press so the stories get the most exposure. For a while we considered starting our own website to publish the NSA documents; when Glenn thought The Guardian was taking too long to publish the first NSA story, I told him he had to make them know he would go somewhere else to publish if they delayed too much.”

For someone who “doesn’t follow everything Greenwald does,” he certainly seems to follow and be actively involved in everything Greenwald does. In fact, it sounds like Miranda is Greenwald’s de facto manager.

And one more point; showing that Miranda was fully complicit in the document-smuggling scheme does nothing to refute the statement that he was a “mule.” In fact, it fully confirms that this was his role in the illicit operation.

As for the assertion that there’s no “safer way to transport sensitive documents across the globe,” well, that’s just a foolish statement. There are many ways to securely transfer encrypted files across the Internet that are much safer than sending Glenn Greenwald’s partner on a round-the-world excursion with thousands of stolen classified documents.

11. As a result of Snowden’s “op,” Germany has cancelled its Cold-war era surveillance pact with the U.S./NSA.

“Ger­many Nixes Sur­veil­lance Pact with US, Britain” by Frank Jordans; Asso­ci­ated Press; 8/2/2013.

Ger­many can­celed a Cold War-era sur­veil­lance pact with the United States and Britain on Fri­day in response to rev­e­la­tions by National Secu­rity Agency leaker Edward Snow­den about those coun­tries’ alleged elec­tronic eaves­drop­ping operations.

Chan­cel­lor Angela Merkel had raised the issue of alleged National Secu­rity Agency spy­ing with Pres­i­dent Barack Obama when he vis­ited Berlin in June. But with weeks to go before national elec­tions, oppo­si­tion par­ties had demanded clar­ity about the extent to which her gov­ern­ment knew of the intel­li­gence gath­er­ing oper­a­tions directed at Ger­many and Ger­man citizens.

Gov­ern­ment offi­cials have insisted that U.S. and British intel­li­gence were never given per­mis­sion to break Germany’s strict pri­vacy laws. But they con­ceded that an agree­ment dat­ing back to the late 1960s gave the U.S., Britain and France the right to request Ger­man author­i­ties to con­duct sur­veil­lance oper­a­tions within Ger­many to pro­tect their troops sta­tioned there.

“The can­cel­la­tion of the admin­is­tra­tive agree­ments, which we have pushed for in recent weeks, is a nec­es­sary and proper con­se­quence of the recent debate about pro­tect­ing per­sonal pri­vacy,” Germany’s For­eign Min­is­ter Guido West­er­welle said in a statement. . . .

11. A revealing article in Der Spiegel notes two VERY important things: the same Angela Merkel who is “shocked, shocked” at what the NSA is doing has not only put roadblocks in European data privacy rules designed to guard against unwarranted government surveillance, but is actively seeking admittance to the “Five Eyes” club, which dates to World War II!

She’s not “shocked, shocked” at all! She wants access to the Five Eyes, which means–DUH–that she APPROVES of this very thing!

What a hypocrite she is! And what a sick spectacle this whole bloody mess is, with a bunch of nitwits caterwauling about “civil liberties,” “human rights,” “the constitution,” and so forth.

“Appear­ances and Real­ity: Merkel Balks at EU Pri­vacy Push” by Gre­gor Peter Schmitz Der Spiegel10/28/2013.

Chan­cel­lor Merkel has put on a good show of being out­raged by Amer­i­can spy­ing. But, at the same time, she has impeded efforts to strengthen data secu­rity. Does she really want more pri­vacy, or is she more inter­ested in being accepted into the exclu­sive group of info-sharing coun­tries known as the ‘Five Eyes’ club?

One par­tic­u­lar point of clar­i­fi­ca­tion was espe­cially impor­tant to Angela Merkel dur­ing the EU sum­mit in Brus­sels last week. When she com­plained about the NSA’s alleged tap­ping of her cell­phone, the Ger­man chan­cel­lor made clear that her con­cern was not for her­self, but for the “tele­phones of mil­lions of EU cit­i­zens,” whose pri­vacy she said was com­pro­mised by US spying.

Yet at a work­ing din­ner with fel­low EU heads of state on Thurs­day, where the agenda included a pro­posed law to bol­ster data pro­tec­tion, Merkel’s fight­ing spirit on behalf of the EU’s cit­i­zens seemed to have dissipated.

In fact, inter­nal doc­u­ments show that Ger­many applied the brakes when it came to speedy pas­sage of such a reform. Although a num­ber of EU mem­ber states — includ­ing France, Italy and Poland — were push­ing for the cre­ation of a Europe-wide mod­ern data pro­tec­tion frame­work before Euro­pean Par­lia­ment elec­tions take place in May 2014, the issue ended up tabled until 2015.

Great Britain, itself sus­pected of spy­ing on its EU part­ners, and Prime Min­is­ter David Cameron, who has for­mer Google CEO Eric Schmidt as one of his advi­sors, put up con­sid­er­able resis­tance. He pushed instead for the final sum­mit state­ment to call sim­ply for “rapid” progress on a solid EU data-protection framework.

A Set­back for  ‘Europe ‘s Dec­la­ra­tion of Independence ’

Merkel also joined those apply­ing the brakes. Over the week­end, SPIEGEL ONLINE gained access to inter­nal Ger­man For­eign Min­istry doc­u­ments con­cern­ing the EU lead­ers’ final sum­mit state­ment. The “track changes” fea­ture reflects a cru­cial pro­posed change to item No. 8 under the sub­ject head­ing “Dig­i­tal Econ­omy” — the sug­ges­tion that the phrase “adop­tion next year” be replaced with “The nego­ti­a­tions have to be car­ried on intensively.”

Ulti­mately, the offi­cial ver­sion of the final sum­mit state­ment sim­ply called for “rapid” progress on the issue — just as Great Britain was hop­ing for.

This amounts to a set­back for pro­po­nents of the pro­posed data-protection law, which EU Jus­tice Com­mis­sioner Viviane Red­ing has called “Europe’s dec­la­ra­tion of independence.”

The Euro­pean Par­lia­ment recently began draft­ing stricter reg­u­la­tions in this area, includ­ing poten­tial fines run­ning into the bil­lions of euros for any Inter­net com­pany caught ille­gally pass­ing pri­vate data to US intel­li­gence agen­cies. Such pro­posed leg­is­la­tion has the sup­port even of some of Merkel’s fel­low con­ser­v­a­tives in the Euro­pean Par­lia­ment, includ­ing Man­fred Weber of the Chris­t­ian Social Union (CSU), the Bavar­ian sis­ter party to Merkel’s Chris­t­ian Demo­c­ra­tic Union (CDU), who says: “We need to finally sum­mon the polit­i­cal will for more data protection.”

Amer­i­can tech cor­po­ra­tions could hardly believe their luck at hav­ing Merkel’s sup­portNow they’re hop­ing for more lee­way to water down the data-protection law as soon as the furor over the lat­est spy­ing scan­dal has sub­sided. One high-ranking Amer­i­can tech-company exec­u­tive told the Finan­cial Times: “When we saw the story about Merkel’s phone being tapped … we thought we were going to lose.” But, he added: “It looks like we won.” [Yeah, the tech companies are “shocked, shocked” too–D.E.]

Indeed, the EU lead­ers’ anger was already start­ing to dis­si­pate dur­ing their ses­sions in Brus­sels. Sum­mit par­tic­i­pants say lead­ers pointed out that Europe is not exactly on the side of the angels when it comes to gov­ern­ment spy­ing. Luxembourg’s prime min­is­ter, Jean-Claude Juncker, cau­tioned his fel­low lead­ers, ques­tion­ing whether they were cer­tain their own intel­li­gence agen­cies had never vio­lated data pri­vacy themselves.

Code of Con­duct for Intel­li­gence Agencies

The con­cerns of the tech indus­try, in par­tic­u­lar, received an atten­tive ear among Europe’s lead­ers. One sum­mit par­tic­i­pant relates that restruc­tur­ing data-protection laws was por­trayed as a “labo­ri­ous” task that would require more time to com­plete, and that Merkel did not push for speed on the mat­ter, to the sur­prise of some of her counterparts. [!–D.E.]

Accord­ing to sum­mit par­tic­i­pants, the Ger­man chan­cel­lor seemed far more inter­ested in the “Five Eyes” alliance among the US, the UK, Aus­tralia, New Zealand and Canada. The top-level allies within this exclu­sive group, which began in 1946 as a pact between Lon­don and Wash­ing­ton, have agreed not to spy on one another, but instead to share infor­ma­tion and resources. In Brus­sels, Cameron stressed to his fel­low lead­ers how many ter­ror­ist attacks had been pre­vented by suc­cess­ful intel­li­gence work.

Merkel, mean­while, stated: “Unlike David, we are unfor­tu­nately not part of this group.” Accord­ing to the New York Times, Ger­many has sought mem­ber­ship in the “Five Eyes” alliance for years, but has been turned down due to oppo­si­tion, includ­ing from the Obama admin­is­tra­tion. But this could now change, the paper speculates.

12. One of the major considerations that will be discussed in a future episode of “The Adventures of Eddie the Friendly Spook” concerns L’Affaire Snowden as an assault on U.S. internet business. We suggest the possibility of U.S. corporations being, in effect, held hostage.

In the context of the Spiegel story above, we note that Germany is far more interested in being admitted to the “Five Eyes” club than assuring data privacy. Again, we suggest that U.S. internet firms are being held hostage in this affair.

Obama appears to be over a barrel in this regard, having to chose between security and the profitability and success of U.S. internet business abroad.

“Obama Weighing Security and Privacy in Deciding on Spy Program Limits” by David E. Sanger; The New York Times; 12/20/2013; p. A18.

. . . . The pressure to rein them in is coming from industry, which fears that the N.S.A.’s abilities to crack data encryption and bore into foreign computer systems and the cloud will scare away business across Europe and Asia. Mr. Obama must now make a choice: to keep building the world’s most sophisticated cyberarsenal, or pare back for fear of harming American competitiveness.

13. In and interview with USA Today, former NSA chief Michael Hayden urged the rejection of an advisory panel’s suggestions concerning the NSA.

He noted that metadata would be far more secure with NSA than with internet and/or telecommunications companies and/or “third parties.” (Such storage was among the recommendations of the panel.)

Hayden’s point is very well taken. In a future episode of “The Adventures of Eddie the Friendly Spook,” we will discuss the “public versus private” dynamic at play here.

Hayden also notes that the Fourth Amendment is not an international treaty. It does not, and never has, applied to U.S. citizens.

“Former NSA Chief: Reject Proposals” by Susan Page; USA Today; 12/31/2013; p. 4A.

In tyhe interview with USA Today’s weekly video newsmaker series. Hayden:

  • Said the vast data on Americans phone records are “far safer and privay is far more secured with NSA holding the data than some third party.” The commission recommended that the phone companies or a third party take over storing the data.” . . . .
  • . . . . Ridiculed a proposal to increase protections for personal data about non-citizens abroad. “The Fourth Amendment to our Constitution is not an international treaty,” he said. For those who aren’t covered by its protections, he said, “if your communications contain information that make Americans more safe and more free, game on.”

14. The head of the National Alliance and author of Turner Diaries–William Luther Pierce–appears to have had fore­knowl­edge of the 9/11 attacks. The National Alliance was among the Nazi groups represented by Glenn Greenwald when he was an attorney.

In The Turner Diaries, the Nazi group The Order takes over the United States after waging a race war and perpetrating a series of terrorist acts using WMDs.

In Serpent’s Walk, also written and published by The National Alliance (again, one of Citizen Greenwald’s Nazi clients), the U.S. is taken over by the Underground Reich after being devastated by a series of terrorist incidents using WMD’s.

Before that could happen, the NSA would have to be neutralized. Think about it!

“Neo-Nazis and 9/11” by Jack McCarthy; Counterpunch; 10/29/2001.

. . . . Upon perusing his speeches from 1998-99, I discovered that Pierce, who heads the so-called ‘National Alliance,’ did indeed utter some most interesting (pre-9/11—if not prophetic—remarks about Osama bin Laden and bio-terrorism. The running theme in Pierce’s commentaries is—to paraphrase his hero Hitler—that Osama Bin Laden’s warning to America is ‘I Am Coming.’ And so is bio-terrorism.

In one chilling commentary Pierce, (after noting that Bin Laden and the rest of the lost generation of angry Moslem youth had it with their parents’ compromises and were hell bent on revenge against infidel America) issued this stark, prophetic warning in a 1998 radio address titled, ‘Stay Out of Tall Buildings.’ ‘New Yorkers who work in tall office buildings anything close to the size of the World Trade Center might consider wearing hard hats . . .’ Pierce warned. . . . [Italics are Mr. Emory’s]. . . .

15. The cli­mac­tic episode of The Turner Diaries is a low-level, sui­cide aer­ial attack on the Pen­ta­gon which occurs on the Ger­man “Day of Destiny”–November 9th. A Ger­man would write that date as–9/11!

The Turner Diaries; “Andrew Mac­don­ald;” Bar­ri­cade Books, Inc. [SC] 1996; Copy­right 1978, 1980 William Pierce; ISBN 1–56980-086–3; p. 201.

. . . I con­ferred pri­vately with Major Williams of the Wash­ing­ton Field Com­mand for more than an hour on the prob­lem of attack­ing the Pen­ta­gon. The military’s other major com­mand cen­ters were either knocked out on Sep­tem­ber 8 or sub­se­quently con­sol­i­dated with the Pen­ta­gon, which the top brass appar­ently regards as impreg­nable. And it damned near is. We went over every pos­si­bil­ity we could think of, and we came up with no really con­vinc­ing plan—except, per­haps one. That is to make an air deliv­ery of a bomb.

In the mas­sive ring of defenses around the Pen­ta­gon there is a great deal of anti-aircraft fire­power, but we decided that a small plane, fly­ing just above the ground, might be able to get through the three-mile gaunt­let with one of our 60-kiloton war­heads. One fac­tor in favor of such an attempt is that we have never before used air­craft in such a way, and we might hope to catch the anti-aircraft crews off their guard.

Although the mil­i­tary is guard­ing all civil air­fields, it just hap­pens that we have an old crop duster stashed in a barn only a few miles from here. My imme­di­ate assign­ment is to pre­pare a detailed plan for an aer­ial attack on the Pen­ta­gon by next Mon­day. We must make a final deci­sion at the time and then act with­out fur­ther delay.

Novem­ber 9, 1993. It’s still three hours until first light, and all sys­tems are ‘go.’ I’ll use the time to write a few pages—my last diary entry. Then it’s a one-way trip to the Pen­ta­gon for me. The war­head is strapped into the front seat of the old Stear­man and rigged to det­o­nate either on impact or when I flip a switch in the back seat. Hope­fully, I’ll be able to mange a low-level air burst directly over the cen­ter of the Pen­ta­gon. Fail­ing that, I’ll at least try to fly as close as I can before I’m shot down.

Thus end Earl Turner’s diaries, as unpre­ten­tiously as they began. His final mis­sion was suc­cess­ful, of course, as we all are reminded each year on Novem­ber 9—our tra­di­tional Day of the Mar­tyrs. . .

16. UPDATE: Angela Merkel has pro­posed an EU-wide com­mu­ni­ca­tions sys­tem to guard against NSA and GCHQ spy­ing, while ramp­ing up spy­ing against the U.S.

“Sur­veil­lance Rev­e­la­tions: Angela Merkel Pro­poses Euro­pean Net­work to Beat NSA and GCHQ Spy­ing” by Tony Pat­ter­son; The Inde­pen­dent [UK]; 2/16/2014.

Chan­cel­lor Angela Merkel of Ger­many has announced plans to set up a Euro­pean com­mu­ni­ca­tions net­work as part of a broad counter-espionage offen­sive designed to curb mass sur­veil­lance con­ducted by the US National Secu­rity Agency and its British coun­ter­part, GCHQ. . . .

. . . . Announc­ing the project in her weekly pod­cast, Ms Merkel said she envis­aged set­ting up a Euro­pean com­mu­ni­ca­tions net­work which would offer pro­tec­tion from NSA sur­veil­lance by side-stepping the cur­rent arrange­ment whereby emails and other inter­net data auto­mat­i­cally pass through the United States.

The NSA’s Ger­man phone and inter­net sur­veil­lance oper­a­tion is reported to be one of the biggest in the EU. In co-operation with GCHQ it has direct access to under­sea cables car­ry­ing transat­lantic com­mu­ni­ca­tions between Europe and the US.

Ms Merkel said she planned to dis­cuss the project with the French Pres­i­dent, François Hol­lande, when she meets him in Paris on Wednes­day. “Above all we’ll talk about Euro­pean providers that offer secu­rity to our cit­i­zens, so that one shouldn’t have to send emails and other infor­ma­tion across the Atlantic,” she said. “Rather one could build up a com­mu­ni­ca­tions net­work inside Europe.”

French gov­ern­ment offi­cials responded by say­ing Paris intended to “take up” the Ger­man initiative.

Ms Merkel’s pro­pos­als appear to be part of a wider Ger­man counter-espionage offen­sive, reported to be under way in sev­eral of Germany’s intel­li­gence agen­cies, against NSA and GCHQ surveillance.

Der Spiegel mag­a­zine said on Sun­day that it had obtained infor­ma­tion about plans by Germany’s main domes­tic intel­li­gence agency, the Fed­eral Office for the Pro­tec­tion of the Con­sti­tu­tion, for a “mas­sive” increase in counter-espionage measures.

The mag­a­zine said there were plans to sub­ject both the Amer­i­can and British Embassies in Berlin to sur­veil­lance. It said the mea­sures would include obtain­ing exact details about intel­li­gence agents who were accred­ited as diplo­mats, and infor­ma­tion about the tech­nol­ogy being used within the embassies. . . .


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