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Links: News About Surveillance, Covert Intervention, Drones…

Posted in News Roundup at 8:05 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz





  • Watching the watchmen
  • Commmentary: Putting limits on the NSA reach
  • Former CIA analyst Ray McGovern says Edward Snowden is no traitor
  • Privacy? Surely you jest!

    “Identity theft is a growing problem, Tom. The personal information you willingly gave about yourself exists forever in the digital ecosystem. That gives savvy technical people lots of opportunities to steal your identity and destroy your finances.”

    “I didn’t realize it was that easy.”

    “Identity theft is less worrisome than what government entities could do to you. Look how the IRS has been used to attack political enemies. Now imagine what government entities can do when they know EVERYTHING about you! That’s why I called you today, Tom. I called to help you.”

  • How U.S. won deal with internet giants shows spy-law struggle

    The night before President Barack Obama’s Jan. 17 speech, O’Neil, a Justice Department lawyer, and his boss, Deputy Attorney General James Cole, got on the phone with attorneys for five major technology companies. All five were suing the U.S. government for permission to disclose the extent of those same classified government orders, which require them to hand over records of customers’ emails and Internet use.






  • Why allies can’t trust Uncle Sam

    US allies should wake up and realize that the FIVE EYES GROUP remains the real allies and in the Asian continent to balance issues Australia, India and Japan are used. However given that Australia belongs to the Five Eyes Group, India and Japan must seriously wonder what they are getting out of betraying their own continent just to rub shoulders with the white man?



Egypt, Syria, and Libya

  • Egypt court sentences police captain to death
  • Seymour M. Hersh on Obama, Erdoğan and the Syrian rebels

    In 2011 Barack Obama led an allied military intervention in Libya without consulting the US Congress. Last August, after the sarin attack on the Damascus suburb of Ghouta, he was ready to launch an allied air strike, this time to punish the Syrian government for allegedly crossing the ‘red line’ he had set in 2012 on the use of chemical weapons.​* Then with less than two days to go before the planned strike, he announced that he would seek congressional approval for the intervention. The strike was postponed as Congress prepared for hearings, and subsequently cancelled when Obama accepted Assad’s offer to relinquish his chemical arsenal in a deal brokered by Russia. Why did Obama delay and then relent on Syria when he was not shy about rushing into Libya? The answer lies in a clash between those in the administration who were committed to enforcing the red line, and military leaders who thought that going to war was both unjustified and potentially disastrous.

    Obama’s change of mind had its origins at Porton Down, the defence laboratory in Wiltshire. British intelligence had obtained a sample of the sarin used in the 21 August attack and analysis demonstrated that the gas used didn’t match the batches known to exist in the Syrian army’s chemical weapons arsenal. The message that the case against Syria wouldn’t hold up was quickly relayed to the US joint chiefs of staff. The British report heightened doubts inside the Pentagon; the joint chiefs were already preparing to warn Obama that his plans for a far-reaching bomb and missile attack on Syria’s infrastructure could lead to a wider war in the Middle East. As a consequence the American officers delivered a last-minute caution to the president, which, in their view, eventually led to his cancelling the attack.

  • Khadafy kept enemies on ice, ran university rape dungeon


  • Cuban Government Reacts to USAID’s “Cuban Twitter” Project
  • US secretly built ‘Cuban Twitter’ to stir unrest

    The U.S. government masterminded the creation of a “Cuban Twitter” — a communications network designed to undermine the communist government in Cuba, built with secret shell companies and financed through foreign banks, The Associated Press has learned.

    The Obama administration project, which lasted more than two years and drew tens of thousands of subscribers, sought to evade Cuba’s stranglehold on the Internet with a primitive social media platform. First, the network would build a Cuban audience, mostly young people; then, the plan was to push them toward dissent.

  • Top 5 Things Wrong With USAID Social Media Plot Against Cuba

    The US Agency for International Development established a microblogging platform similar to Twitter for Cubans. It used it to promote critical discussion of the government but also to gather private information of users. Covert operations are supposed to be approved by the White House but it is not clear this one was. The whole thing may have been illegal. Sen. Patrick Leahy said he knew nothing of the project and criticized the use of US AID as the agency to pursue it. He is right. Here’s what’s wrong with this picture:


Attack on Journalism

Barrett Brown

Foreign Affairs

  • Not Saving the Children

    Such suspicion of NGOs is not a Pakistani phenomenon alone. Globally speaking, NGO-government relations are not only tenuous but also generally straitened. Civil society organizations have quadrupled in number across the developing world over the last 20 years. This in turn has generated a sense of mistrust between the state and NGOs.

  • US-compliant regime assured

    The candidates include US groomed politicians, and drug-dealing warlords from the Tajik and Uzbek north. Chief among them, Rashid Dostam, a major war criminal and principal CIA ally who ordered the massacre of over 2,000 Taliban prisoners.

  • Not all veterans want to remember war
  • DC Has Two Team Names to Change

    The Nationals, on the other hand, are part of the promotion of the worst crimes our society is currently engaged in. A National’s game is packed, inning after inning, with songs and cheers and announcements promoting war. Fans are told that the U.S. Navy is “keeping the world’s oceans safe and free” — and they stand and cheer for that, even as the U.S. Navy and Army and Air Force and Marines and assorted special forces and mercenaries and CIA kill, and kill, and kill, building hostility around the world.


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