Mostrando entradas con la etiqueta National Security Agency. Mostrar todas las entradas
Mostrando entradas con la etiqueta National Security Agency. Mostrar todas las entradas

sábado, mayo 30, 2015

Who Needs Edward Snowden?

By
www.theguardian.com
With Congress now poised to renew, not renew, or revise the N.S.A.’s bulk metadata program, it’s worth thinking about where we would be now if a twenty-nine-year-old contractor for Booz Allen Hamilton hadn’t left Hawaii for Hong Kong, and a new life as an outlaw ombudsman.
Were it not for Edward Snowden or someone like him, the N.S.A. would likely still be collecting the records of almost every phone call made in the United States, and no one outside of government would know it. A handful of civil-liberties-minded representatives and senators might drop hints in hearings and ask more pointed questions in classified settings. Members of the public would continue making phone calls, unaware that they were contributing to a massive government database that was supposedly intended to make their lives safer but had not prevented a single terrorist attack. And, on Monday, the government’s Section 215 powers, used to acquire records from hundred of billions of phone calls, among other “tangible things,” would be quietly renewed.
Snowden shouldn’t have been necessary. The Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (or FISA Court), which evaluates Section 215 requests, is supposed to be interpreting the law to make sure that government surveillance doesn’t go outside of it. Congressional intelligence committees, which review the activities of the N.S.A., are supposed to be providing some oversight. The N.S.A. itself reports to the Department of Defense, which reports to the White House, all of which have dozens of lawyers, who are all supposed to apply the law. The government, in other words, is supposed to be watching itself, especially in matters of national security, which are, by necessity, shielded from daylight. The fact that it took thirteen years, and one whistle-blower, to expose a program that is conclusively ineffective and, according to one federal appeals court, illegal, points to a problem much larger than any one program. It suggests that claims about what is necessary to prevent the next terrorist attack are too sacrosanct to require evidence. As the debate over Section 215 has played out over the past two years, it has become clear that the punishments for exaggerating the efficacy of surveillance programs and downplaying their privacy implications are just about nonexistent.
The government enshrouds the details of its surveillance programs in a technical vocabulary (“reasonable articulable suspicion,” “seeds,” “queries,” “identifiers”) that renders them too dull and opaque for substantive discussion by civilians. As one Pentagon handbook put it, “one can be led astray by relying on the generic or commonly understood definition of a particular word.” There is a kind of legal subversion at work here. Broad and clearly worded laws, including the Fourth Amendment, are being undermined by a raft of quasi-legal documents, most of them too long, narrow, and boring to read—that is, if anyone were allowed to read them in full. Instead of being named for what they actually do, programs are named for the subsections of the laws that are supposed to authorize them, whether or not that authority is actually present in the language of the law. With all the attention being paid to Section 215, named for a part of the Patriot Act, which does not contain the words “bulk,” “phone,” or “metadata,” it’s easy to forget that the program is just one piece of the intelligence community’s legal armory. Little is known about how other authorities, including Executive Order 12333, which some consider the intelligence community’s most essential charter, are being interpreted to permit spying on Americans. And a redacted report, released last week by the Department of Justice’s Office of the Inspector General, hints at how much we still don’t know about Section 215. Nearly two years into the congressional debate over the use and legality of Section 215, the report provides the first official confirmation that the “tangible things” obtained by the F.B.I. through Section 215 include not just phone metadata but “email transactional records” and two full lines of other uses, all of which the F.B.I. saw fit to redact.
Some have argued that the current surveillance regime isn’t as bad as the activities of Henry Kissinger, who ordered wiretaps on his rivals during the Vietnam era, or of J. Edgar Hoover, who used the F.B.I. to authorize the covert infiltration of left-wing groups and terrorized Martin Luther King, Jr., with anonymous threats. Those abuses led to the lengthy investigations of the Church Committee, and the current system of judicial and congressional oversight. It’s true that the modern surveillance regime is less about the passions of individuals and more about the tendencies of institutions. But those tendencies—especially the belief that national security can trump the plain English of the law—will likely make it hard for this generation to achieve meaningful surveillance reform. This week’s debate over Section 215 should be the beginning of a much larger conversation.

jueves, febrero 13, 2014

Snowden Swiped Password From NSA Coworker

A civilian NSA employee recently resigned after being stripped of his security clearance for allowing former agency contractor Edward Snowden to use his personal log-in credentials to access classified information, according to an agency memo obtained by NBC News.
In addition, an active duty member of the U.S. military and a contractor have been barred from accessing National Security Agency facilities after they were “implicated” in actions that may have aided Snowden, the memo states. Their status is now being reviewed by their employers, the memo says.
The Feb. 10 memo, sent to congressional intelligence and judiciary committees this week, provides the first official account of a sweeping NSA internal inquiry aimed at identifying intelligence officials and contractors who may been responsible for one of the biggest security breaches in U.S. history. The memo is unclassified but labeled “for official use only.”
"Unbeknownst to the civilian, Mr. Snowden was able to capture the password, allowing him even greater access to classified information.”
While the memo’s account is sketchy, it suggests that, contrary to Snowden’s statements, he used an element of trickery to retrieve his trove of tens of thousands of classified documents: “At Snowden’s request,” the civilian NSA employee, who is not identified by name, entered his password onto Snowden’s computer terminal, the memo states.
“Unbeknownst to the civilian, Mr. Snowden was able to capture the password, allowing him even greater access to classified information,” the memo states.
The memo states that the civilian employee was unaware that Snowden “intended to unlawfully disclose classified information.” Nevertheless, by sharing with Snowden his personal “public key infrastructure” certificate -- a system of highly secure credentials that provided greater access to NSA’s internal computer system -- the employee “failed to comply with security obligations,” the memo states. As a result, the employee’s security clearance was revoked in November and the NSA has notified the Justice Department that he recently resigned. (A public key infrastructure certificate is a highly secure system of password and log-in exchanges designed to protect against unauthorized access to sensitive computer networks.)
The memo does not explain what actions the U.S. military member and the contractor took that caused them to lose their access to NSA facilities.
"Has anybody been disciplined at NSA for dropping the ball so badly?”
The Feb. 10 memo was signed by Ethan Bauman, the NSA’s director of legislative affairs. It was sent to the congressional committees after repeated questions from senior members about whether the NSA intended to hold any of its employees accountable for the security lapses that enable Snowden to gain access to massive volumes of classified documents that he later leaked to the news media
“Has anybody been disciplined at NSA for dropping the ball so badly?” Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Sen. Patrick Leahy, D-Vt., demanded of NSA Director Gen. Keith Alexander at a Dec. 11 hearing. Alexander at the time replied that the agency had three “cases” that “we’re currently reviewing.” (An NSA spokeswoman Vanee Vines declined comment Wednesday night, writing in an email: “I don’t have anything for your story.”)
The question of how Snowden was able to obtain as much classified material as he did while working at a remote NSA station in Hawaii has been the subject of intensive investigation by the U.S. intelligence community for months.
Reuters reporters Mark Hosenball and Warren Strobel reported in November that Snowden used login credential and passwords provided “unwittingly” by colleagues at the Hawaii spy base. The Reuters report said Snowden “may have persuaded between 20 and 25 fellow workers” to give him their passwords. But the NSA never publicly commented on that report and Snowden appeared to deny it during a public Google chat on Jan. 23.
“Was the privacy of your co-workers considered while you were stealing their log-in and password information?” Snowden was asked during the chat.
“With all due respect to Mark Hosenball, the Reuters report that put this out there was simply wrong,” Snowden replied. “I never stole any passwords, nor did I trick an army of co-workers.”
Ben Wizner, a lawyer for the ACLU who represents Snowden, did not immediately respond to phone and email requests for comment.

miércoles, diciembre 11, 2013

NSA Uses Google Tracking Cookies to Spy on Potential Targets

irwebreport.com

A new information leak from Edward Snowden reveals that the NSA is using Google's tracking cookies to identify targets for government hacking. The Washington Post reports that Snowden's documents "show that when companies follow consumers on the Internet to better serve them advertising, the technique opens the door for similar tracking by the government. The slides also suggest that the agency is using these tracking techniques to help identify targets for offensive hacking operations."

These tracking cookies allow a website to identify a user's browser, but do not contain any personal information.  "This cookie allows NSA to single out an individual's communications among the sea of Internet data in order to send out software that can hack that person's computer."
The slides released by Snowden do not say how the government accesses Google's tracking cookies, "but other documents reviewed by the Post indicate that cookie information is among the data NSA can obtain with a Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act order."

martes, noviembre 26, 2013

Suspecting NSA spying, Microsoft to ramp up efforts to encrypt its Internet traffic

Microsoft is moving toward a major new effort to encrypt its Internet traffic after concluding that the National Security Agency may have broken into its global communications systems, said people familiar with the emerging plans.

Suspicions at Microsoft, while building for several months, sharpened in October when it was reported that the NSA was intercepting traffic inside the private networks of Google and Yahoo, two industry rivals with similar global infrastructures, said people with direct knowledge of the company’s deliberations. They said top Microsoft executives are meeting this week to decide what encryption initiatives to deploy and how quickly.

Documents obtained from former NSA contractor Edward Snowden suggest — though do not prove — that the company is right to be concerned. Two previously unreleased slides that describe operations against Google and Yahoo include references to Microsoft’s Hotmail and Windows Live Messenger services. A separate NSA e-mail mentions Microsoft Passport, a Web-based service formerly offered by Microsoft, as a possible target of that same surveillance project, called MUSCULAR, which was first disclosed by The Post last month.

Read more at:
http://www.washingtonpost.com/business/technology/microsoft-suspecting-nsa-spying-to-ramp-up-efforts-to-encrypt-its-internet-traffic/2013/11/26/44236b48-56a9-11e3-8304-caf30787c0a9_story.html

miércoles, septiembre 04, 2013

The Snowden Affair/ National Security Archive

Edited by Jeffrey T. Richelson/
Posted – September 4, 2013
On August 12, 2013, President Barack Obama announced (Document 118) the impending creation of a group to review U.S. signals intelligence capabilities and communications technologies. Its mandate would be to "assess whether, in light of advancements in communications technologies, the United States employs its technical collection capabilities in a manner that optimally protects our national security and advances our foreign policy while appropriately accounting for other policy considerations, such as the risk of unauthorized disclosure and our need to maintain the public trust." That same day, Director of National Intelligence James R. Clapper, Jr. announced (Document 119) that he would be establishing the review group and its final report would be due no later than December 15, 2013.
The catalyst for the president's announcement was an unexpected event that occurred just a little over two months previously. On June 5, a British newspaper, The Guardian, began publishing a series of articles disclosing highly classified aspects of, and documents about, certain National Security Agency (NSA) electronic surveillance operations involving not only extensive collection of foreign communications, including Internet traffic, but the collection of the metadata associated with phone calls (foreign and domestic) made by United States citizens. A few days later, The Guardian revealed its source to be Edward J. Snowden, a former CIA employee who had been working at a NSA facility in Hawaii as an employee of Booz Allen Hamilton.
On June 14, the United States filed a sealed criminal complaint against Snowden, releasing only one page (Document 74) to the public. Subsequently, Snowden departed Hong Kong, where he had been staying for the previous month (reportedly spending his final two days at the Russian consulate[1]), using a SAFEPASS (Document 83) issued by the Ecuadoran embassy in London. He arrived at Moscow's Sheremetyevo airport while seeking asylum elsewhere. While in Russia, he issued several statements (Document 97). During that time, the United States sought to discourage nations offering Snowden asylum and pre-emptively requested his extradition (Document 81) from at least one nation.
Snowden's potential movements also became the subject of a letter (Document 91) from his father's lawyer to Attorney General Eric Holder asking for three guarantees to encourage his son to return home, including that he would not be detained or imprisoned prior to trial. Subsequently, in response to reported claims that Snowden feared being tortured if he returned, Holder wrote (Document 105) to the Russian Minister of Justice, assuring him that Snowden would not be tortured or face the death penalty if he returned (or was returned) to the United States.

Director of National Intelligence James Clapper (Photo: ODNI)
The controversy that has erupted over Snowden and his disclosures is not the first time NSA has been at the center of controversy. In the 1970s, through leaks, investigative reporting, and congressional inquiries, the public learned of projects SHAMROCK and MINARET. The SHAMROCK program (1945-1975) involved several U.S. companies turning over the telegraphic communications that passed over their networks. Project MINARET "was essentially the NSA's watch list" and "used existing SIGINT accesses" to search for "terms, names, and references associated with certain American citizens." While MINARET officially began in 1969, the watch list activity had started at least as early as 1960, and did not originally involve American citizens. In 1975, The Washington Post reported that the watch list had included prominent anti-Vietnam war activists such as Jane Fonda and Benjamin Spock.[2]
In the 1990s, major concern arose — more overseas than in the United States — about a program designated ECHELON. That program involved the installation of software at a select number of "COMSAT Intercept" sites operated by what are today designated the "FIVE EYES" nations — the United States, the United Kingdom, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand. The sites intercepted the traffic flowing through communications satellites and the ECHELON software sorted through it (particularly printed fax transmissions), routing those containing pre-selected key words to analysts in whatever FIVE EYES nation had expressed interest. However, claims that ECHELON was a far more extensive global surveillance operation produced an international controversy and a European Parliament investigation.[3]
Perhaps the controversy around ECHELON would have had a significantly longer life had it not been for the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001. But those events presaged the more recent controversies. In May 2006, USA Today published an article titled "NSA Has Massive Database on Americans' Phone Calls: 3 Telecoms Help Government Collect Billions of Domestic Records."[4] One lawsuit that followed was based on the claims of an AT&T employee (Document 11) concerning a special room containing surveillance equipment at an AT&T San Francisco facility.
However, there was a lack of official acknowledgment or leaked documents to support the claims. Thus, an August 2007 Congressional Research Service examination of the issue (Document 15) noted that "the factual information available in the public domain with respect to any such alleged program is limited and in some instances inconsistent, and the application, if at all, of any possible relevant statutory provisions to any such program is likely a very fact specific inquiry." The CRS study also stated that "It is possible that any information provided to the NSA from the telephone service providers was provided in response to a request for information, not founded on a statutory basis."[5]

National Security Agency headquarters (Photo: National Security Agency)
In contrast, the pre-August 12 disclosures in The Guardian, as well in The Washington Post and the Brazilian media, were based on a variety of document sources. Further, the online stories provided links to many of the key leaked documents, including an inspector general's report on the STELLARWIND Program (Document 23) — also known as the President's Surveillance Program (Document 24) — as well as Top Secret documents specifying procedures concerned with targeting (Document 25) and the 'minimization of data' about U.S. persons (Document 26). Also appearing on the web were selected slides from a 41-slide presentation (Document 55) on a program referred to as PRISM — involving the collection of Internet traffic from a variety of service providers — as well as a presentation on XKEYSCORE (Document 18), which sorts through intercepted traffic.
Along with the PRISM revelations, charges that the U.S. had bugged the facilities of European governments produced the greatest reaction in Europe — and the announcement (Document 95) of an investigation. However, the focus in the United States revolved around two programs, the Section 215 Bulk Collection Program and the 'PRISM' program, the latter based on Section 702 of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act of 1978 Amendments Act (Document 20).
Among the first documents The Guardian disclosed was a 4-page Top Secret 'Secondary Order' (Document 59) from the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISC) that commanded Verizon Business Network Services to provide an electronic copy of two 'tangible' things: "all call detail records or 'telephony metadata' created by Verizon for (i) communications between the United States and abroad; or (ii) wholly within the United States." The government subsequently released a heavily redacted version of the Primary Order (Document 58) from the surveillance court.
The leak of documents concerning the Bulk Collection program had a number of consequences leading up to the review ordered by President Obama. The leaks provided new data on the evolution of the program (Document 12, Document 17), reporting to Congress (Document 28, Document 32), challenges by Sen. Ron Wyden (D-OR) and others to the legal interpretations employed to justify the program (Document 10, Document 34, Document 63, Document 90a), as well as official reaction to those challenges (Document 37, Document 90b). The leaks also resulted in attempts by the government (Document 79, Document 92) to provide public reassurance — both with regard to the legality and utility of the program — including a single-spaced 22-page white paper (Document 115). Labeled "Administration White Paper" and lacking any specific agency source, the document seems to include the kind of legal language and justifications that would likely appear in the still-Secret Office of Legal Counsel opinions describing the government's legal bases for the programs. Such attempts also met with rebuttals ( Document 68) by those less convinced of the utility of the Bulk Collection effort.

Senator Ron Wyden (D-OR) (Photo: www.wyden.senate.gov)
Because of the leaks, DNI James Clapper had to provide various explanations (Document 71, Document 82) for his "no" response to a question Wyden had posed to him at a public hearing in March. Wyden had inquired whether the NSA collected "any kind of data at all" on millions or hundreds of millions of Americans.
In addition, there were amendments introduced in Congress that would have terminated the program — including Sen. Rand Paul's (R-KY) "Fourth Amendment Restoration Act" (Document 67) and an amendment (Document 101) by Representatives Justin Amash (R-MI) and John Conyers (D-MI) that would have prohibited funding for execution of any FISA order that did not limit collection to data that pertained to an individual who was the subject of an investigation. Objections to the amendment, which was ultimately defeated by the unexpectedly close margin of 217-205, came from Senate Select Committee on Intelligence chairman Dianne Feinstein (Document 106), the White House (Document 107), and DNI Clapper (Document 108).
The contrast between the Bulk Collection program and the Section 702 'PRISM' program was that there was little dispute that the latter had produced significant intelligence that could be employed in operations against terrorist activities. Still, disclosure of the program was accompanied by the publication of relevant, sometimes Top Secret, documents (Document 18, Document 25, Document 26, Document 55) that produced significant controversy. One element of controversy concerned the specifics of the involvement of key communications providers (e.g. Yahoo, Google, Facebook) in the program — particularly if NSA had direct access to their servers.

National Security Agency director Gen. Keith B. Alexander (Photo: National Security Agency)
A second source of controversy concerned a number of NSA claims made in a fact sheet it had posted on the Web about the 702 program (Document 78). The fact sheet sparked a letter from Senators Wyden and Udall (D-CO) (Document 85) to NSA director Keith Alexander with two objections. The senators wrote to dispute what they considered "an inaccurate statement about how section 702 authority has been interpreted by the U.S. government." In addition, they objected to the statement in the fact sheet that any inadvertently acquired communication concerning a U.S. person that was not relevant to the purpose of the intercept, or evidence of a crime, had to be promptly destroyed. They characterized the statement as "somewhat misleading in that it implies that the NSA had the ability to determine how many American communications it has collected under section 702, or that the law does not allow NSA to deliberately search for the records of particular Americans." In his response (Document 87), Alexander noted that "the fact sheet ... could have more precisely described the requirements for collection under Section 702." Shortly thereafter, the NSA removed both the Section 215 and Section 702 fact sheets from its website.
A number of disclosures and declassifications occurred subsequent to the president's August 12 announcement — primarily from The Washington Post and the Office of the Director of National Intelligence. Among the documents provided by Snowden to the Post was a Top Secret report (Document 44) on the Washington-based activities of the NSA's Signals Intelligence Directorate, with collection limitations imposed by Executive Order 12333, the FISA, and other regulations. Over the course of a year starting April 2011, it noted 2,776 incidents (2,057 related to the executive order and 719 with regard to FISA). The report attributed the incidents mostly to "roamers" (foreign targets that entered the United States), but they also involved cases of a lack of proper FISC authority, database queries, errors in tasking or detasking, and collection at international transit switches. The Post also first disclosed a 4-page document (Document 125) titled "Targeting Rationale," which focused on what information should, and should not, be provided to FISA Amendments Act "overseers."
On August 21, 2013, the Office of the DNI declassified a collection of relevant documents with Clapper providing an overview in a release letter (Document 123). Included in the documents were a directive on minimization (Document 38) — which was a more recent version of one of the documents that first appeared in The Guardian (Document 26) — as well as testimony before closed Congressional hearings (Document 41) and a semiannual compliance report (Document 113). In addition, there were three 2011-2012 opinions (Document 35, Document 40, Document 48) from the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court. The first of the opinions had been the subject of a lawsuit by the Electronic Frontier Foundation. It noted that "one aspect of the proposed collection — the 'upstream collection' of Internet transactions — is in some respects, deficient on statutory and constitutional grounds." The subsequent opinions (Document 40, Document 48) discussed the adequacy of the government's response to the court's criticism.
Compliance violations had been noted several days before the release in a press briefing (Document 120) by John DeLong, NSA's director of compliance. His disclosures produced reactions from Senate intelligence chairman Feinstein and committee members Wyden and Udall. Feinstein stated (Document 122) that her committee had "never identified an instance in which the NSA has intentionally abused its authority to conduct surveillance for inappropriate purposes," while Wyden and Udall wrote (Document 121) that "we believe Americans should know that this confirmation is just the tip of a larger iceberg."
More:  http://www2.gwu.edu/~nsarchiv/NSAEBB/NSAEBB436/

viernes, agosto 30, 2013

"Black-Budget": Cuba Remains Priority for U.S. Counter-Intelligence

Anyone who still believes NSA leaker Edward Snowden is some sort of crusader for civil liberties is delusional.

Snowden has just leaked to The Washington Post a classified 178-page budget summary (known as the "black budget") for the National Intelligence Program, which details the successes, failures and objectives of the U.S. intelligence community.

As such, he has alerted the enemies of the U.S. as to technologies, moles, counter-intelligence and counter-terrorism operations, and the "critical blind spots" of U.S. intelligence throughout the world.

None of this has anything to do with civil liberties.

Moreover, it's clear that China, Russia Iran and Cuba and other U.S. foes now have access to this information -- and probably much more.

(This is why tyrants like Fidel Castro praise Snowden).

One of the things revealed in the "black budget" is the following:

U.S. intelligence officials take an active interest in foes as well as friends. Pakistan is described in detail as an “intractable target,” and counterintelligence operations “are strategically focused against [the] priority targets of China, Russia, Iran, Cuba and Israel.” The latter is a U.S. ally but has a history of espionage attempts against the United States.

This should be a wake up call to those who believe that Cuba does not pose a threat to the U.S.

The fact remains Cuba's gathering and sharing of intelligence with fellow state-sponsors of terrorism and other U.S. foes is a threat and, henceforth, remains a priority target for U.S. counter-intelligence operations.

jueves, agosto 29, 2013

Snowden impersonated NSA officials, sources say

Edward Snowden accessed some secret national security documents by assuming the electronic identities of top NSA officials, said intelligence sources.
“Every day, they are learning how brilliant [Snowden] was,” said a former U.S. official with knowledge of the case. “This is why you don’t hire brilliant people for jobs like this. You hire smart people. Brilliant people get you in trouble.”
Snowden was a Honolulu-based employee of Booz Allen Hamilton, an NSA contractor. His job gave him system administrator privileges on the NSA’s intranet, NSAnet. He reportedly used his privileges to download 20,000 documents.
The NSA still doesn’t know exactly what Snowden took. But its forensic investigation has included trying to figure out which higher level officials Snowden impersonated online to access the most sensitive documents.
The NSA has as many as 40,000 employees. According to one intelligence official, the NSA is restricting its research to a much smaller group of individuals with access to sensitive documents. Investigators are looking for discrepancies between the real world actions of an NSA employee and the online activities linked to that person’s computer user profile. For example, if an employee was on vacation while the on-line version of the employee was downloading a classified document, it might indicate that someone assumed the employee’s identity.
The NSA has already identified several instances where Snowden borrowed someone else’s user profile to access documents, said the official.
Keep reading on investigations >>

lunes, agosto 26, 2013

How Snowden did it

www.newyorker.com
When Edward Snowden stole the crown jewels of the National Security Agency, he didn’t need to use any sophisticated devices or software or go around any computer firewall.
All he needed, said multiple intelligence community sources, was a few thumb drives and the willingness to exploit a gaping hole in an antiquated security system to rummage at will through the NSA’s servers and take 20,000 documents without leaving a trace.
“It’s 2013 and the NSA is stuck in 2003 technology,” said an intelligence official.
Jason Healey, a former cyber-security official in the Bush Administration, said the Defense Department and the NSA have “frittered away years” trying to catch up to the security technology and practices used in private industry.  “The DoD and especially NSA are known for awesome cyber security, but this seems somewhat misplaced,” said Healey, now a cyber expert at the Atlantic Council. “They are great at some sophisticated tasks but oddly bad at many of the simplest.”
As a Honolulu-based employee of Booz Allen Hamilton doing contract work for the NSA, Snowden had access to the NSA servers via "thin client" computer. The outdated set-up meant that he had direct access to the NSA servers at headquarters in Ft. Meade, Md., 5,000 miles away.
In a “thin client” system, each remote computer is essentially a glorified monitor, with most of the computing power in the central server. The individual computers tend to be assigned to specific individuals, and access for most users can be limited to specific types of files based on a user profile.
But Snowden was not most users. A typical NSA worker has a “top secret” security clearance, which gives access to most, but not all, classified information. Snowden also had the enhanced privileges of a “system administrator.” The NSA, which has as many as 40,000 employees, has 1,000 system administrators, most of them contractors.
As a system administrator, Snowden was allowed to look at any file he wanted, and his actions were largely unaudited. “At certain levels, you are the audit,” said an intelligence official.
He was also able to access NSAnet, the agency’s intranet, without leaving any signature, said a person briefed on the postmortem of Snowden’s theft. He was essentially a “ghost user,” said the source, making it difficult to trace when he signed on or what files he accessed.
If he wanted, he would even have been able to pose as any other user with access to NSAnet, said the source.
The “thin client” system and system administrator job description also provided Snowden with a possible cover for using thumb drives.
The system is intentionally closed off from the outside world, and most users are not allowed to remove information from the server and copy it onto any kind of storage device. This physical isolation – which creates a so-called “air gap" between the NSA intranet and the public internet -- is supposed to ensure that classified information is not taken off premises.
But a system administrator has the right to copy, to take information from one computer and move it to another. If his supervisor had caught him downloading files, Snowden could, for example, have claimed he was using a thumb drive to move information to correct a corrupted user profile.
“He was an authorized air gap,” said an intelligence official.
Finally, Snowden’s physical location worked to his advantage. In a contractor’s office 5,000 miles and six time zones from headquarters, he was free from prying eyes. Much of his workday occurred after the masses at Ft. Meade had already gone home for dinner. Had he been in Maryland, someone who couldn’t audit his activities electronically still might have noticed his use of thumb drives.
It’s not yet certain when Snowden began exploiting the gaps in NSA security. Snowden worked for Booz Allen Hamilton for less than three months, and says he took the job in order to have access to documents. But he may have begun taking documents many months before that, while working with the NSA via a different firm. According to Reuters, U.S. officials said he downloaded documents in April 2012, while working for Dell.
Snowden is thought to have made his initial attempt to offer documents to the media in late 2012, while at Dell.  According to published accounts, he tried to contact Guardian journalist Glenn Greenwald in December and started talking to filmmaker Laura Poitras in January.
He began working for Booz Allen in March. In May, he told his supervisor he needed to take time off to deal with a health issue, and then flew to Hong Kong, where he met with Poitras and Greenwald, on May 20. He later told the Guardian that he was downloading documents on his last day at work. The revelations based on his documents started appearing in the Guardian and the Washington Post within weeks.
Snowden is currently living in Russia, where he’s been granted temporary asylum. The U.S. government has charged him with theft and violations of the Espionage Act.
U.S. intelligence officials said recently that they plan to significantly reduce the number of individuals with system administrator privileges.
“U.S. intelligence has invited so many people into the secret realm,” said an intelligence official. “There are potentially tons of Edward Snowdens. But most people aren’t willing to vacuum everything up and break the law.”
The NSA did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Richard Esposito is the Senior Executive Producer for Investigations at NBC News. Matthew Cole is an investigative reporter at NBC News. He can be reached at matthew.cole@nbcuni.com.

miércoles, julio 17, 2013

Snowden's Laptops May Hold 'Extremely Sensitive' Details About NSA-CIA 'Black Bag Jobs'

mueller spying clapper NSA FBI CIA
REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque
FBI Director Robert Mueller (L), Director of National Intelligence James Clapper (C) and CIA Director John Brennan testify before a Senate Intelligence Committee hearing on "Current and Projected National Security Threats to the United States" on Capitol Hill in Washington March 12, 2013.
Matthew Aid of Foreign Policy has published an excellent report detailing the secret intelligence gathering partnership between the National Security Agency (NSA) and the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA).
Essentially, when the NSA cannot gain access to certain computers or gadgets, the spy agency calls on specially-trained CIA clandestine operators to physically bug, tap, or steal the information, often from foreign governments and military or multinational corporations.
Aid reports that these secret break-ins — referred to as "black bag jobs," "surreptitious entries," or "off-net operations" — are occurring "at a tempo not seen since the height of the Cold War."
He notes that the specific nature and extent of the partnership is deemed to be extremely sensitive, "especially since many of these operations are directed against friends and allies" of the U.S.
Enter Edward Snowden.
According to Guardian journalist Glenn Greenwald, the thousands of documents that the NSA whistleblower/leaker stole 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."
Aid writes that the "one major concern" of U.S. intelligence officials is that "details of these [black bag] operations, including the identities of the targets covered by these operations, currently reside in the four laptops reportedly held by Edward Snowden. ... Officials at both the CIA and NSA know that the public disclosure of these operations would cause incalculable damage to U.S. intelligence operations abroad."
On May 20 Snowden arrived in Hong Kong from Hawaii with "four laptop computers that enable him to gain access to some of the US government's most highly-classified secrets," but it is unclear where Snowden's laptops currently are.
On the one hand, the former CIA technician's Hong Kong lawyer told The New York Times that the 30-year-old left China after he learned he could spend years in prison without access to a computer during the extradition process — suggesting that he may have kept his computers with him.
On the other hand, the Wall Street Journal reported that he did not have any luggage to check when he boarded a flight to Moscow on June 23.
Furthermore, it is unclear if the data has been or could be compromised.
In a letter to former U.S. Senator Gordon Humphreys published on Tuesday, Snowden stated:
"I have not provided any information that would harm our people – agent or not – and I have no intention to do so.
Further, no intelligence service — not even our own — has the capacity to compromise the secrets I continue to protect. ... You may rest easy knowing I cannot be coerced into revealing that information, even under torture."
Former senior U.S. intelligence analyst Joshua Foust disputes that first claim, noting that the German newspaper Der Spiegel reported it "decided not to publish details it has seen about secret operations that could endanger the lives of NSA workers."
Nevertheless, as Aid notes, "If anyone wonders why the U.S. government wants to get its hands on Edward Snowden and his computers so badly," the fact that he may have access to the super secret NSA-CIA partnership "is an important reason why."
One thing to keep in mind is that Greenwald told Eli Lake of The Daily Beast "if anything happens at all to Edward Snowden, he told me he has arranged for [several people around the world] to get access to the full archives” of secret NSA archives.

Mark Zuckerberg Runs A Giant Spy Machine In Palo Alto, California

mark zuckerberg facebook
REUTERS/Jim Young
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg arrives for the start of a town hall meeting with U.S. President Barack Obama at Facebook Headquarters in Palo Alto, California April 20, 2011.

Mark Zuckerberg runs a giant spy machine in Palo Alto*, California. He wasn’t the first to build one, but his was the best, and every day hundreds of thousands of people upload the most intimate details of their lives to the Internet. The real coup wasn’t hoodwinking the public into revealing their thoughts, closest associates, and exact geographic coordinates at any given time. Rather, it was getting the public to volunteer that information. Then he turned off** the privacy settings.
[**Editor's note: Facebook disputes the notion that it has "turned off" its privacy settings. We have provided a statement from the company at the bottom of this post.]
“People have really gotten comfortable not only sharing more information and different kinds, but more openly and with more people,” said Zuckerberg after moving 350 million people into a glass privacy ghetto. “That social norm is just something that has evolved over time.”
If the state had organized such an information drive, protestors would have burned down the White House. But the state is the natural beneficiary of this new “social norm.” Today, that information is regularly used in court proceedings and law enforcement. There is no need for warrants or subpoenas. Judges need not be consulted. The Fourth Amendment does not come into play. Intelligence agencies don't have to worry about violating laws protecting citizenry from wiretapping and information gathering. Sharing information “more openly” and with “more people” is a step backward in civil liberties. And spies, whether foreign or domestic, are “more people,” too.
Julian Assange, founder of WikiLeaks, knows better than anyone how to exploit holes in the secrecy apparatus to the detriment of American security. His raison d'être is to blast down the walls protecting state secrets and annihilate the implicit bargain, yet even he is frightened by the brazenness of Facebook and other such social networking sites:
Here we have the world’s most comprehensive database about people, their relationships, their names, their addresses, their locations and their communications with each other, their relatives, all sitting within the United States, all accessible to the U.S. intelligence. Facebook, Google, Yahoo — all these major U.S. organizations have built-in interfaces for U.S. intelligence. It’s not a matter of serving a subpoena. They have an interface that they have developed for U.S. intelligence to use.
It’s all there, and the Internet never forgets. But even if the impossible happened and the Internet did somehow develop selective amnesia, in the case of microblogging service Twitter, the Library of Congress has acquired every message ever posted by its two hundred million members. As Jeffrey Rosen wrote in the New York Times:
We’ve known for years that the Web allows for unprecedented voyeurism, exhibitionism and inadvertent indiscretion, but we are only beginning to understand the costs of an age in which so much of what we say, and of what others say about us, goes into our permanent — and public — digital files. The fact that the Internet never seems to forget is threatening, at an almost existential level, our ability to control our identities; to preserve the option of reinventing ourselves and starting anew to overcome our checkered pasts.
The U.S. government isn't the only institution to notice. Early in the military campaigns in Afghanistan and Iraq, soldiers of the social networking generation uploaded to their MySpace profiles pictures of camp life in the war zones. Innocuous photos of troops horsing around in front of tent cities, bunkers, outposts, motor pools, and operations centers circulated freely on what was then described as “a place for friends.”
The U.S. military soon realized that foreign intelligence services, sympathetic to America’s enemies and savvy to the social revolution, could collect these photographs by the thousands and build detailed, full-color maps of American military bases. During the Cold War, this would have required the insertion of first-rate spies, briefcases filled with cash, and elaborate blackmail schemes. In the age of radical transparency, all it would take is a MySpace account to know exactly where to fire the mortar round to inflict maximum damage on the United States.
The Marine Corps confirmed this in a 2009 directive. “These Internet sites in general are a proven haven for malicious actors and content are a particularly high risk due to information exposure, user generated content and targeting by adversaries.” The directive continued, “The very nature of [social networking sites] creates a larger attack and exploitation window, exposes unnecessary information to adversaries and provides an easy conduit for information leakage,” putting operational security, communications security, and U.S. military personnel “at an elevated risk of compromise.”
This type of clever thinking on the part of America’s enemies is not unique to this conflict. During the run-up to the Gulf War, foreign intelligence services had a pretty good idea that the U.S. war machine was preparing for its most substantial engagement since Vietnam. The U.S. military recognized a new kind of threat — one that didn’t require foreign intelligence to insert an agent onto every base in the Republic. Open source information could be just as dangerous. Spikes in late-night orders from pizzerias near key military bases and an exceptionally busy parking lot at the Pentagon could tell hostile powers everything they needed to know.
In determining what should remain secret and what should not, the military — like each component of the American secrecy apparatus — is good at overreaction. The default answer: more secrets. To counter the MySpace problem, they banned blogs and social networks. This benefitted base security but killed morale at home. No longer could parents see their young sons and daughters safe — and even happy — in the war zone. All that remained were breathless reports of intense combat on the cable news networks. And while the average supply clerk is probably safer in Baghdad than in Detroit, every parent and spouse saw the same thing: a son or daughter in a flag-draped casket.
In 2010, the Department of Defense revised and consolidated its ad hoc policy on social media. On its official website it declared, “Service members and [Department of Defense] employees are welcome and encouraged to use new media to communicate with family and friends — at home stations or deployed,” but warned, “it’s important to do it safely.”)
From "Deep State: Inside the Government Secrecy Industry" by journalists Marc Ambinder and D.B. Grady. Reprinted with permission from D.B. Grady.
*"When the book was actually written, they were still in Palo Alto." - D.B. Grady
In a statement to Business Insider, Facebook notes:
"In reality we spend a lot of time building privacy controls, and working to make them powerful, easy to use, and also educating our users on them. For example:
- (in the same post) In-product education about privacy that we did in December: http://newsroom.fb.com/News/547/Better-Controls-for-Managing-Your-Content 
- Recent flyout in the News Feed ahead of Graph Search that pointed to the new tools and highlighted how people could check their stuff: http://newsroom.fb.com/News/660/Expanding-Graph-Search-Beta"

viernes, junio 28, 2013

What you don’t know about Snowden’s former employer

www.perkinswill.com

http://www.dailypaul.com/290258/booz-allen-hamilton-what-you-dont-know-about-snowdens-fomer-employer
Let’s take another trip down the rabbit hole, shall we?
Lost in the Edward Snowden debate is a critical look at his former employer, the company doing the spying on Americans in the first place: Booz Allen Hamilton.
Booz Allen Hamilton is a government contractor, with 99% of its revenue coming from the US government. Not only does it receive money from the NSA, but also the US Army, US Navy, US Air Force, US Marine Corps, Department of Defense, Department of Homeland Security, the FBI and … the IRS. In addition, Booz Allen is heavily connected to the CIA.
Among the individuals involved in running the company, we have:
James Clapper – current Director of National Intelligence (DNI), head of NSA, the man who lied to Congress about the fact that NSA is actively spying on Americans, is a former executive
Mike McConnell – a current executive of the company, had Clapper’s job (DNI) during George W. Bush’s administration (keep it in the family, eh?) — he worked for Booz Allen before Bush, then worked for Bush, then back to Booz Allen after Bush
James Woolsey – former CIA Director, current executive (see Jan Helfeld’s interview of Mr. Woolsey where it becomes clear that Woolsey has no interest in discussing principles, only war)
Melissa Hathaway – former executive, also worked for McConnell during the Bush administration
Ian Brzezinski – former executive, son of Zbigniew Brzezinski, co-founder of the Trilateral Commission with David Rockefeller, central figure in the NWO crowd, and mastermind of Operation Cyclone
Dov Zakheim – this character is … unbelievable:
1993 – His company, System Planning Corporation, had a subsidiary called Tridata Corporation, which was the company that “oversaw” the investigation of the 1993 WTC bombing
2000 – Part of the neocon Project for a New American Century, he is co-author of “Rebuilding America’s Defenses,” in which he is credited with the infamous line, “… some catastrophic and catalyzing event – like a new Pearl Harbor.”
2001 – He is appointed Comptroller of the Pentagon, in which $2.3 trillion promptly goes “missing”
2001 – Attack on 9/11 occurs; some people are suspicious of his connections, since his company, SPC, in involved in flight systems capable of remote controlling aircraft, and because he was the guy who leased 32 Boeing 767 aircraft to McDill Air Force Base (2 of the 9/11 aircraft were 767′s), and McDill is close to Elgin AFB, which was the location that was to be used if Operation Northwoods had gone live
2004 – Goes to work for Booz Allen Hamilton.
2012 – Advisor on Middle East policy for Mitt Romney campaign (gee … ya think Romney would have gone to war in the Middle East???)
Booz Allen Hamilton is owned by the Carlyle Group.
One of the big investors in the Carlyle Group was the Bin Laden family in Saudi Arabia. Yeah … THAT Bin Laden family. And instrumental in being the “go between” for Carlyle/Bin Laden was a guy by the name of George H. W. Bush. Maybe you’ve heard of him?
The CEO of the Carlyle Group (remember, they OWN Booz Allen Hamilton) is Frank Carlucci. Mr. Carlucci has quite a resume:
Nixon Administration – Director of the Office for Economic Opportunity (the “War on Poverty” — and a great place to decide who gets government contracts)
Carter Administration – Deputy Director of the CIA
Reagan Administration – National Security Advisor and Secretary of Defense (Donald Rumsfeld is Carlucci’s protoge)
He is or has been with the Project for a New American Century and a member of the Board of Trustees for the RAND Corporation, a CIA front that develops policies that the Military Industrial Complex then carries out.
You want a NWO guy? Carlucci is your man. And CEO of Carlyle Group, owner of Booz Allen Hamilton, spying on YOU.
At RAND, his specialty was Middle East policy. What do you know? That was also the specialty of Graham Fuller, CIA guy who was the father-in-law of Ruslan Tsarni, uncle of Tamarlan Tsarnev, suspected Boston bomber.
Speaking of the Boston bombing and Tamarlan Tsarnev, he had a couple of trips to Russia that made the news. But what did not make the news (in America, but it did in Russia) is that he went there for “training” that was funded by the Jamestown Foundation. And what do you know? The Jamestown Foundation (CIA front) has among its past board members none other than Dick Cheney and Marcia Carlucci, wife of Frank Carlucci.
See my post here about the CIA connections to the Boston bombing:
http://www.dailypaul.com/290098/boston-bombing-was-a-cia-fal…
Given all their connections and government contracts, here’s an interesting question: Booz Allen Hamilton has not only been involved in spying via the NSA, but they have also received no-bid contracts from the IRS. What do they know about the American people via the IRS?
Now, one of the things you will start to see if you look around at some of the big corporations these days is that many of them are involved in what they call “corporate citizenship” or something similar. What this means at the surface level is they are being “good citizens” by donating to charity. But when you go beyond the surface, you will see something else going on.
Booz Allen Hamilton donates money to the Clinton Global Initiative. The CGI is a part of the Clinton Foundation (yeah, THAT Clinton).
The Clinton Foundation has been implicated in bribery on an international level. Clinton gave himself a special little privilege while president wherein he exempted the William Jefferson Clinton Foundation from the normal rules of disclosure regarding publicly listing who its contributors were. It’s a secret foundation. And it has over $200 million in assets now. And is alleged to be used as a way to funnel black money from corrupt governments around the world for behind-the-scenes deals like special oil contracts, arms dealing, US government foreign aid deals, whatever.
So folks, what you are not being told in the media about Edward Snowden’s former company is that it is not only spying on you, but it is probably checking out your tax returns, too, and also receiving some of your tax money in government contracts, which it then funnels to CIA-connected/Military Industrial Complex-connected/NWO-connected individuals and organizations.
Something like this: Your tax money (taken from you by force) -> IRS -> Booz Allen Hamilton -> Clinton Foundation -> foreign bribes -> more contracts for the Military Industrial Complex -> more spending by foreign governments -> more foreign aid from the US government -> more US government spending -> more taxes needed -> more taxes from YOU.
Oh … and they are spying on you, too.
But Edward Snowden … yeah HE is the bad guy here. Uh huh … move along … nothing to see here.
———–
thanks to eggins10 for the link..
here is the background to snowdens employer and the inter-connected world of money, military and politics..check this guy out on wikipedia..Dov Zakheim..unreal connections..and jewish..what a surprise..
and no surprise the clinton foundation is caught up in this..i have posted on them many times..they are fronts for laundering and payoffs..like the bill gates foundation..

lunes, junio 10, 2013

Former CIA Officer: Intel Considering NSA Whistleblower 'Potential Chinese Espionage'

B

Former CIA officer Bob Baer said on CNN Sunday evening officials are speculating that Edward Snowden's whistleblowing could be "potential Chinese espionage."  Snowden came forward yesterday and identified himself as the leaker of the NSA's massive surveillance operation. 

Snowden revealed he was currently located in Hong Kong. 
“It’s [Hong Kong's] not an independent part of China at all. I’ve talked to a bunch of people in Washington today, in official positions, and they are looking at this as a potential Chinese espionage case,” said Baer. 
When he was asked if there was a possibility to extradite Snowden, Baer responded, “We’ll never get him in China. They’re not about to send him to the United States and the CIA is not going to render him, as he said in the tape, is not going to try to grab him there.”
President Obama recently met with China's Presdent Xi Jinping where they discussed issues of cybersecurity. 
Baer said, "“It almost seems to me that this was a pointed affront to the United States on the day the president is meeting the Chinese leader,” Baer said, “telling us, listen, quit complaining about espionage and getting on the internet and our hacking. You are doing the same thing.”

NSA whistle-blower who sought to 'inform the public' in surveillance risks decades in jail

 A 29-year-old American who works as contract employee at the National Security Agency is the source of The Guardian's disclosures about the U.S. government's secret surveillance programs, the London newspaper reported Sunday.
The source of the bombshell leaks about the U.S. government gathering information on billions of phone calls and Internet activities risks decades in jail for the disclosures if the U.S. can extradite him from Hong Kong, where he says he has taken refuge after saying his sole motive was to “inform the public.”
Edward Snowden, 29, who claims to have worked as a contractor at the National Security Agency and the CIA, allowed The Guardian and The Washington Post to reveal his identity Sunday. Snowden, in a video that appeared on the Guardian’s website, said two NSA surveillance programs are wide open to abuse.
"Any analyst at any time can target anyone. Any selector. Anywhere," Snowden said. "I, sitting at my desk, had the authority to wiretap anyone, from you or your accountant to a federal judge to even the president if I had a personal e-mail."
Snowden said he was a former technical assistant for the CIA and a current employee of defense contractor Booz Allen Hamilton, which released a statement Sunday confirming he had been a contractor with them in Hawaii for less than three months. Company officials have promised to work with investigators.
Snowden told the Guardian he believes the government could try to charge him with treason under the Espionage Act, but Mark Zaid, a national security attorney who represents whistle-blowers, told The Associated Press that that would require the government to prove he had intent to betray the United States. Snowden has said his “sole motive” was to inform the public and spur debate.
"My sole motive is to inform the public as to that which is done in their name and that which is done against them," Snowden told the Guardian.
In a note accompanying the first set of documents he provided to the newspaper, Snowden wrote: "I understand that I will be made to suffer for my actions," but "I will be satisfied if the federation of secret law, unequal pardon and irresistible executive powers that rule the world that I love are revealed even for an instant."
Snowden told the Post he was not going to hide.
"Allowing the U.S. government to intimidate its people with threats of retaliation for revealing wrongdoing is contrary to the public interest," he said in the interview published Sunday. Snowden said he would "ask for asylum from any countries that believe in free speech and oppose the victimization of global privacy."
Snowden is now staying in Hong Kong and seeking asylum outside the United States, possibly in Iceland, The Guardian reports.
If the reports are accurate, Snowden could face many years in prison for releasing classified information if he is successfully extradited from Hong Kong or elsewhere.
The Office of the Director of National Intelligence declined to comment on Snowden's disclosure, saying the issue has been referred to the Justice Department.
However, the agency said: "Any person who has a security clearance knows that he or she has an obligation to protect classified information and abide by the law."
"The Department of Justice is in the initial stages of an investigation into the unauthorized disclosure of classified information by an individual with authorized access," Justice Department spokeswoman Nanda Chitre said in a statement late Sunday. 
New York Republican Rep. Peter King, chairman of the Homeland Security Subcommittee on Counterintelligence and Terrorism and a member of the Select Committee on Intelligence, said: "If Edward Snowden did in fact leak the NSA data as he claims, the United States government must prosecute him to the fullest extent of the law and begin extradition proceedings at the earliest date. The United States must make it clear that no country should be granting this individual asylum. This is a matter of extraordinary consequence to American intelligence."
In a nearly 13-minute video that accompanied The Guardian story Sunday, Snowden says he has no intentions of hiding because he has done nothing wrong.
“When you’re in positions of privileged access … . You recognize some of these things are actual abuses,” Snowden said about his decision to be a whistle-blower. “Over time, you feel compelled to talk about it.”
The Guardian broke the story late Wednesday that the federal government was collecting phone call records from Verizon customers.
The Guardian and the Post followed with a series of reports about the calls being taken from other telecommunications companies and that the NSA and FBI have a Internet scouring program, code-named PRISM, that records Internet activities, all part of a post-9/11 effort to thwart terrorism.
White House spokesman Josh Earnest said the Oval Office would not comment on Snowden before Monday.
Washington officials have acknowledged all branches of the federal government — Congress, the White House and federal courts — knew about the collection of data under the Patriot Act.
Still, the leaks have reopened the debate about privacy concerns versus heightened measure to protect against terrorist attacks. They also led the NSA to ask the Justice Department to conduct a criminal investigation.
Fox News confirmed the Obama administration took the first steps Saturday in a criminal investigation when officials filed a “crimes report.”
National Intelligence Director James Clapper has decried the leaks as reckless. And in the past days he has taken the rare step of declassifying some details about them to respond to media reports about counterterrorism techniques employed by the government.
“Disclosing information about the specific methods the government uses to collect communications can obviously give our enemies a ‘playbook’ of how to avoid detection,” Clapper said Saturday.
PRISM allows the federal government to tap directly into the servers of major U.S. Internet companies such as Google, Apple, Microsoft, Facebook and AOL, scooping out emails, video chats, instant messages and more to track foreign nationals who are suspected of terrorism or espionage.
The chief executives of Facebook and Google have said their companies were not aware of the data grab.
Officials say the government is not listening to any of the billions of phone calls, only logging the numbers.  
President Obama, Clapper and others also have said the programs are subject to strict supervision of a secret court.
Obama said Friday that the programs have made a difference in tracking terrorists and are not tantamount to "Big Brother." 
The president acknowledged the U.S. government is collecting reams of phone records, including phone numbers and the duration of calls, but said this does not include listening to calls or gathering the names of callers.  
"You can't have 100 percent security and also then have 100 percent privacy and zero inconvenience,” he said. “We're going to have to make some choices as a society."
However, the president said he welcomes a debate on that issue. 
The Guardian reported that Snowden was working in an NSA office in Hawaii when he copied the last of the documents he planned to disclose and told supervisors that he needed to be away for a few weeks to receive treatment for epilepsy.
Snowden is quoted as saying he chose Hong Kong because it has a "spirited commitment to free speech and the right of political dissent" and because he believed it was among the spots on the globes that could and would resist the dictates of the U.S. government.
Hong Kong has an extradition treaty with the United States that took force in 1998, according to the U.S. State Department website.
"The government could subject him to a 10- or 20-year penalty for each count," with each document leaked considered a separate charge, Mark Zaid, a national security lawyer who represents whistle-blowers told the Associated Press.
Snowden is quoted as saying he hopes the publicity of the leaks will provide him some protection.
"I feel satisfied that this was all worth it. I have no regrets," Snowden told the Guardian.
Snowden was said to have worked on IT security for the CIA and by 2007 was stationed with diplomatic cover in Geneva, responsible for maintaining computer network security. That gave him clearance to a range of classified documents, according to the Guardian report.
"Much of what I saw in Geneva really disillusioned me about how my government functions and what its impact is in the world," he says. "I realized that I was part of something that was doing far more harm than good."
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Retratos de fusilados por el Castrismo - Juan Abreu

"Hablame"

"EN TIEMPOS DIFÍCILES" - Heberto Padilla

A aquel hombre le pidieron su tiempo

para que lo juntara al tiempo de la Historia.

Le pidieron las manos,

porque para una época difícil

nada hay mejor que un par de buenas manos.

Le pidieron los ojos

que alguna vez tuvieron lágrimas

para que contemplara el lado claro

(especialmente el lado claro de la vida)

porque para el horror basta un ojo de asombro.

Le pidieron sus labios

resecos y cuarteados para afirmar,

para erigir, con cada afirmación, un sueño

(el-alto-sueño);

le pidieron las piernas

duras y nudosas

(sus viejas piernas andariegas),

porque en tiempos difíciles

¿algo hay mejor que un par de piernas

para la construcción o la trinchera?

Le pidieron el bosque que lo nutrió de niño,

con su árbol obediente.

Le pidieron el pecho, el corazón, los hombros.

Le dijeron

que eso era estrictamente necesario.

Le explicaron después

que toda esta donación resultaria inútil.

sin entregar la lengua,

porque en tiempos difíciles

nada es tan útil para atajar el odio o la mentira.

Y finalmente le rogaron

que, por favor, echase a andar,

porque en tiempos difíciles

esta es, sin duda, la prueba decisiva.

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La columna de Cubanalisis

NEOCASTRISMO [Hacer click en la imagen]

NEOCASTRISMO [Hacer click en la imagen]
¨Saturno jugando con sus hijos¨/ Pedro Pablo Oliva

Seguidores

Carta desde la carcel de Fidel Castro Ruz

“…después de todo, para mí la cárcel es un buen descanso, que sólo tiene de malo el que es obligatorio. Leo mucho y estudio mucho. Parece increíble, las horas pasan como si fuesen minutos y yo, que soy de temperamento intranquilo, me paso el día leyendo, apenas sin moverme para nada. La correspondencia llega normalmente…”

“…Como soy cocinero, de vez en cuando me entretengo preparando algún pisto. Hace poco me mandó mi hermana desde Oriente un pequeño jamón y preparé un bisté con jalea de guayaba. También preparo spaghettis de vez en cuando, de distintas formas, inventadas todas por mí; o bien tortilla de queso. ¡Ah! ¡Qué bien me quedan! por supuesto, que el repertorio no se queda ahí. Cuelo también café que me queda muy sabroso”.
“…En cuanto a fumar, en estos días pasados he estado rico: una caja de tabacos H. Upman del doctor Miró Cardona, dos cajas muy buenas de mi hermano Ramón….”.
“Me voy a cenar: spaghettis con calamares, bombones italianos de postre, café acabadito de colar y después un H. Upman #4. ¿No me envidias?”.
“…Me cuidan, me cuidan un poquito entre todos. No le hacen caso a uno, siempre estoy peleando para que no me manden nada. Cuando cojo el sol por la mañana en shorts y siento el aire de mar, me parece que estoy en una playa… ¡Me van a hacer creer que estoy de vacaciones! ¿Qué diría Carlos Marx de semejantes revolucionarios?”.

Quotes

¨La patria es dicha de todos, y dolor de todos, y cielo para todos, y no feudo ni capellaní­a de nadie¨ - Marti

"No temas ni a la prision, ni a la pobreza, ni a la muerte. Teme al miedo"
-
Giacomo Leopardi

¨Por eso es muy importante, Vicky, hijo mío, que recuerdes siempre para qué sirve la cabeza: para atravesar paredes¨Halvar de Flake [El vikingo]

"Como no me he preocupado de nacer, no me preocupo de morir" - Lorca

"Al final, no os preguntarán qué habéis sabido, sino qué habéis hecho" - Jean de Gerson

"Si queremos que todo siga como está, es necesario que todo cambie" - Giuseppe Tomasi di Lampedusa

"Todo hombre paga su grandeza con muchas pequeñeces, su victoria con muchas derrotas, su riqueza con múltiples quiebras" - Giovanni Papini


"Life is what happens while you are busy making other plans" - John Lennon

"Habla bajo, lleva siempre un gran palo y llegarás lejos" - Proverbio Africano

"No hay medicina para el miedo" - Proverbio escoces

"El supremo arte de la guerra es doblegar al enemigo sin luchar"
- Sun Tzu

"You do not really understand something unless you can explain it to your grandmother" - Albert Einstein

"It is inaccurate to say I hate everything. I am strongly in favor of common sense, common honesty, and common decency. This makes me forever ineligible for public office" - H. L. Menken

"I swore never to be silent whenever and wherever human beings endure suffering and humiliation. We must always take sides. Neutrality helps the oppressor, never the victim. Silence encourages the tormentor, never the tormented" - Elie Wiesel

"Stay hungry, stay foolish" -
Steve Jobs

"If you put the federal government in charge of the Sahara Desert , in five years ther'ed be a shortage of sand" - Milton Friedman

"The tragedy of modern man is not that he knows less and less about the meaning of his own life, but that it bothers him less and less" - Vaclav Havel

"No se puede controlar el resultado, pero si lo que uno haga para alcanzarlo" -
Vitor Belfort [MMA Fighter]

Liborio

Liborio
A la puerta de la gloria está San Pedro sentado y ve llegar a su lado a un hombre de cierta historia. No consigue hacer memoria y le pregunta con celo: ¿Quién eras allá en el suelo? Era Liborio mi nombre. Has sufrido mucho, hombre, entra, te has ganado el cielo.

Para Raul Castro

Cuba ocupa el penultimo lugar en el mundo en libertad economica solo superada por Corea del Norte.

Cuba ocupa el lugar 147 entre 153 paises evaluados en "Democracia, Mercado y Transparencia 2007"

Cuando vinieron

Cuando vinieron a buscar a los comunistas, Callé: yo no soy comunista.
Cuando vinieron a buscar a los sindicalistas, Callé: yo no soy sindicalista.
Cuando vinieron a buscar a los judíos, Callé: yo no soy judío. Cuando vinieron a buscar a los católicos, Callé: yo no soy “tan católico”.
Cuando vinieron a buscarme a mí, Callé: no había quien me escuchara.

Reverendo Martin Niemöller

Martha Colmenares

Martha Colmenares
Un sitio donde los hechos y sus huellas nos conmueven o cautivan

CUBA LLORA Y EL MUNDO Y NOSOTROS NO ESCUCHAMOS

Donde esta el Mundo, donde los Democratas, donde los Liberales? El pueblo de Cuba llora y nadie escucha.
Donde estan los Green, los Socialdemocratas, los Ricos y los Pobres, los Con Voz y Sin Voz? Cuba llora y nadie escucha.
Donde estan el Jet Set, los Reyes y Principes, Patricios y Plebeyos? Cuba desesperada clama por solidaridad.
Donde Bob Dylan, donde Martin Luther King, donde Hollywood y sus estrellas? Donde la Middle Class democrata y conservadora, o acaso tambien liberal a ratos? Y Gandhi? Y el Dios de Todos?
Donde los Santos y Virgenes; los Dioses de Cristianos, Protestantes, Musulmanes, Budistas, Testigos de Jehova y Adventistas del Septimo Dia. Donde estan Ochun y todas las deidades del Panteon Yoruba que no acuden a nuestro llanto? Donde Juan Pablo II que no exige mas que Cuba se abra al Mundo y que el Mundo se abra a Cuba?
Que hacen ahora mismo Alberto de Monaco y el Principe Felipe que no los escuchamos? Donde Madonna, donde Angelina Jolie y sus adoptados around de world; o nos hara falta un Brando erguido en un Oscar por Cuba? Donde Sean Penn?
Donde esta la Aristocracia Obrera y los Obreros menos Aristocraticos, donde los Working Class que no estan junto a un pueblo que lanquidece, sufre y llora por la ignominia?
Que hacen ahora mismo Zapatero y Rajoy que no los escuchamos, y Harper y Dion, e Hillary y Obama; donde McCain que no los escuchamos? Y los muertos? Y los que estan muriendo? Y los que van a morir? Y los que se lanzan desesperados al mar?
Donde estan el minero cantabrico o el pescador de percebes gijonese? Los Canarios donde estan? A los africanos no los oimos, y a los australianos con su acento de hombres duros tampoco. Y aquellos chinos milenarios de Canton que fundaron raices eternas en la Isla? Y que de la Queen Elizabeth y los Lords y Gentlemen? Que hace ahora mismo el combativo Principe Harry que no lo escuchamos?
Donde los Rockefellers? Donde los Duponts? Donde Kate Moss? Donde el Presidente de la ONU? Y Solana donde esta? Y los Generales y Doctores? Y los Lam y los Fabelo, y los Sivio y los Fito Paez?
Y que de Canseco y Miñoso? Y de los veteranos de Bahia de Cochinos y de los balseros y de los recien llegados? Y Carlos Otero y Susana Perez? Y el Bola, y Pancho Cespedes? Y YO y TU?
Y todos nosotros que estamos aqui y alla rumiando frustaciones y resquemores, envidias y sinsabores; autoelogios y nostalgias, en tanto Louis Michel comulga con Perez Roque mientras Biscet y una NACION lanquidecen?
Donde Maceo, donde Marti; donde aquel Villena con su carga para matar bribones?
Cuba llora y clama y el Mundo NO ESCUCHA!!!

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