Tag Archives | domestic spying

Susan Sarandon Says U.S. Govt. Tapped Her Phone

Susan Sarandon 2 by David ShankboneNo doubt she’s also been spending a lot of time with tax auditors and otherwise enjoying the various but dubious attentions of her government. Via CBS News:

Actress Susan Sarandon says her phone has been tapped by the government, and that she was recently denied security clearance to visit the White House but does not know why.

The actress made the comments during a Q&A session with filmmaker Michael Moore on Sunday at a Tribeca Film Festival event in New York.

“I’ve gotten my [FBI] file twice,” Sarandon said, according to the Los Angeles Times. “I know my phone was tapped. If they’re not surveilling you, then everyone else has cameras on phones.” She added, “I was denied security clearance to go to the White House [next week], and I don’t know why.”

Moore, who’s made films including “Fahrenheit 9/11,” “Sicko” and “Capitalism: A Love Story,” also chimed in: “I never think about it.

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CIA Spies On You Via Connected Devices In Your Home

Gen. David H. Petraeus plays Wii golf.

David H. Petraeus plays Wii golf.

Or if they’re not doing so yet, they soon will. Spencer Ackerman reports for Wired‘s Danger Room blog:

More and more personal and household devices are connecting to the internet, from your television to your car navigation systems to your light switches. CIA Director David Petraeus cannot wait to spy on you through them.

Earlier this month, Petraeus mused about the emergence of an “Internet of Things” — that is, wired devices — at a summit for In-Q-Tel, the CIA’s venture capital firm. “‘Transformational’ is an overused word, but I do believe it properly applies to these technologies,” Petraeus enthused, “particularly to their effect on clandestine tradecraft.”

All those new online devices are a treasure trove of data if you’re a “person of interest” to the spy community. Once upon a time, spies had to place a bug in your chandelier to hear your conversation.

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The CIA And NYPD Join Forces To Violate Your Civil Rights

NYPDHuffington Post‘s Matt Apuzzo and Adam Goldman reveal the dubious activities that the NYPD has been engaging in, with CIA help, in the never-ending “war on terror”:

In New Brunswick, N.J., a building superintendent opened the door to apartment No. 1076 one balmy Tuesday and discovered an alarming scene: terrorist literature strewn about the table and computer and surveillance equipment set up in the next room.

The panicked superintendent dialed 911, sending police and the FBI rushing to the building near Rutgers University on the afternoon of June 2, 2009. What they found in that first-floor apartment, however, was not a terrorist hideout but a command center set up by a secret team of New York Police Department intelligence officers.

From that apartment, about an hour outside the department’s jurisdiction, the NYPD had been staging undercover operations and conducting surveillance throughout New Jersey. Neither the FBI nor the local police had any idea.

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U.S. Government Caught Spying On Journalist Who Revealed CIA Secrets

risenwarHere at disinformation we often joke about government agencies monitoring our remarkably dull lives, but when it actually happens it’s not funny anymore. We’re far down their list of subversive media types, I suspect, but New York Times reporter John Risen made his way to the top, as Politico reports:

Federal investigators trying to find out who leaked information about a CIA attempt to disrupt Iran’s nuclear program obtained a New York Times reporter’s three private credit reports, examined his personal bank records and obtained information about his phone calls and travel, according to a new court filing.

The scope and intrusiveness of the government’s efforts to uncover reporter James Risen’s sources surfaced Thursday in the criminal case of James Sterling, a former CIA officer facing federal criminal charges for allegedly disclosing classified information. Sterling is accused of giving Risen details about what Risen describes as the CIA’s plan to give Iran faulty nuclear blueprints, hoping to temporarily thwart the regime’s ambitions to build an atomic bomb.

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EFF Uncovers Widespread FBI Intelligence Abuse

Aaron Cynic writes at Diatribe Media:

The Electronic Frontier Foundation released a report over the weekend detailing an alarming amount of violations from FBI intelligence investigations between 2001 and 2008. In response to a Freedom of Information Act request, the FBI released 2,500 documents detailing violations made to the Intelligence Oversight board. The documents highlight nearly 800 specific violations stemming from FBI monitoring of American citizens, resident aliens and non-residents alike.

According to the report, violations include “submitting false or inaccurate declarations to courts, using improper evidence to obtain federal grand jury subpoenas and accessing password protected documents without a warrant.” Of those violations, “over 1/3rd involved rules governing internal oversight of intelligence investigations, 1/3rd involved abuse, misuse or careless use of the Bureau’s National Security Letter authority and almost one fifth involved a violation of the Constitution or the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act.” The EFF report states that could be just the tip of the iceberg, noting that tens of thousands of intelligence abuse violations could have occurred.

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U.S. Government Forced to Release Documents on Domestic Spying Program

American_Civil_Liberties_Union_logoThe Inter Press Service reports:

Last week’s release of 900 pages of U.S. government documents dealing with the implementation of the nation’s primary surveillance law suggests that the government has been systematically violating the privacy rights of U.S. citizens.

How many citizens is unclear, since the documents were extensively redacted. The previously secret internal documents were obtained through a court battle by the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU).

The government declined to disclose the number of citizens who had their telephone calls, e-mail, or other communications intercepted under the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) Amendments Act of 2008. They also declined to discuss any specific abuses, the ACLU said.

The 900 documents were delivered in keeping with a previously agreed schedule.

Alex Abdo, a senior attorney with the ACLU, told IPS, “For two years now, the government has had the authority to engage in the dragnet and unconstitutional surveillance of Americans’ communications with little to no oversight of its actual surveillance decisions.”

“This week’s disclosures confirm that the government repeatedly abused even the minimal, and unconstitutional, limits set out in this new surveillance authority,” he added.

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Did 9/11 Really “Change Everything”?


We’ve been told that 9/11 changed everything.

Is it true?

Let’s look:

  • The Afghanistan war was planned before 9/11 (see this and this)
  • Cheney apparently even made Iraqi’s oil fields a national security priority before 9/11
  • Cheney dreamed of giving the White House the powers of a monarch long before 9/11
  • Cheney and Rumsfeld actively generated fake intelligence which exaggerated the threat from an enemy in order to justify huge amounts of military spending long before 9/11.
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Obama Wants To Wiretap The Internet

Photo: David Drexler (CC)

Photo: David Drexler (CC)

This report from the New York Times is spreading like wildfire, especially amongst the conservative media like Fox News.

Federal law enforcement and national security officials are preparing to seek sweeping new regulations for the Internet, arguing that their ability to wiretap criminal and terrorism suspects is “going dark” as people increasingly communicate online instead of by telephone.

Essentially, officials want Congress to require all services that enable communications — including encrypted e-mail transmitters like BlackBerry, social networking Web sites like Facebook and software that allows direct “peer to peer” messaging like Skype — to be technically capable of complying if served with a wiretap order. The mandate would include being able to intercept and unscramble encrypted messages.

The bill, which the Obama administration plans to submit to lawmakers next year, raises fresh questions about how to balance security needs with protecting privacy and fostering innovation.

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The Return of COINTELPRO?

FBI_logoWell it certainly seems like it! Former Army Intelligence case officer in Vietnam, Jeff Stein writes for the Washington Post:

There was a time in the 1960s when the FBI’s illegal surveillance of left-wing groups seemed, and maybe even was, sinister if not broadly menacing. Parts of today’s Justice Department report on its more recent activities, however, evoke that old saw about history repeating itself as farce.

The Inspector General’s report covered a number of FBI targets following the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks: an antiwar rally in Pittsburgh; a Catholic peace magazine; a Quaker activist; and members of the environmental group Greenpeace as well as of People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, or PETA.

My favorite story was about the rookie FBI agent who was dispatched to an antiwar rally in Pittsburgh with a camera and told to look for terrorism suspects.

It was “a slow work day,” the IG report said — the Friday after Thanksgiving 2002.

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