Skip to main content

Obama authorizes five more years of warrantless wiretapping — RT

Obama authorizes five more years of warrantless wiretapping — RT
Federal detectives won’t need a warrant to eavesdrop on the emails and phone calls of Americans for another five years. President Obama reauthorized an intelligence gathering bill on Sunday that puts national security over constitutional rights.
President Barack Obama inked his name over the weekend to an extension of the FISA Amendments Act of 2008, a George W. Bush-era legislation that has allowed the government expansive spy powers that has been considered by some to be dragnet surveillance.
FISA, or the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, was first signed into law in the 1970s in order to put into place rules regarding domestic spying within the United States. Upon the passing of the FAA in 2008, however, the online and over-the-phone activities of Americans became subject to sweeping, warrantless wiretapping in instances where investigators reasonably suspect US citizens to be engaged in conversation with persons located outside of the country.
Congress had only up until the end of 2012 to either reauthorize FISA and the FAA, or let the bill expire. Despite a large grassroots campaign from privacy advocates and civil liberties organization to ensure the acts would fade from history, though, the Senate approved a five-year extension of the legislation on Friday. Just two days later, Pres. Obama signed his name to the act, opening up the inboxes and phone records of US citizens to the federal government until at least 2018.
Although on the books since 2008, the FAA has come under increased criticism this year thanks to efforts from a select group of lawmakers who have adamantly demanded answers about a program largely considered to be cloaked in secrecy. In May, Senators Ron Wyden (D-OR) and Mark Udall (D-CO) sent a letter to the National Security Agency asking for an estimate of how many Americans have been targeted since the FAA went on the books. In response, Inspector General I. Charles McCullough said honoring that request would be “beyond the capacity” of the office, and that “dedicating sufficient additional resources would likely impede the NSA’s mission.”
“If no one will even estimate how many Americans have had their communications collected under this law then it is all the more important that Congress act to close the ‘back door searches’ loophole, to keep the government from searching for Americans’ phone calls and emails without a warrant,” Wyden, a member of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, told Wired.com’s Danger Room.
Although Americans cannot be specifically targeted under the FAA without getting the approval of a select panel of FISA judges, the warrantless monitoring of messages involving anyone outside of the country can easily collect collateral information about US citizens.
Speaking on the Senate floor on Friday before the FISA vote, Wyden warned, “You can’t just go out checking everybody in sight with the prospect of that maybe there’s someone who’s done something wrong.”
“Government officials may only search someone’s house if they have evidence that someone is breaking the law and they show the evidence to a judge to get an individual warrant,” he said.
Despite attempts from Wyden and others to overturn the FAA, though, it cleared the Senate by a vote of 73-23 on Friday and was signed by Pres. Obama in Washington just two days later.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Nir Rosen: Gaza: Israel, Hamas and the logic of colonial power | Comment is free | guardian.co.uk

Nir Rosen: Gaza: Israel, Hamas and the logic of colonial power | Comment is free | guardian.co.uk: "I have spent most of the Bush administration's tenure reporting from Iraq, Afghanistan, Lebanon, Somalia and other conflicts. I have been published by most major publications. I have been interviewed by most major networks and I have even testified before the senate foreign relations committee. The Bush administration began its tenure with Palestinians being massacred and it ends with Israel committing one of its largest massacres yet in a 60-year history of occupying Palestinian land. Bush's final visit to the country he chose to occupy ended with an educated secular Shiite Iraqi throwing his shoes at him, expressing the feelings of the entire Arab world save its dictators who have imprudently attached themselves to a hated American regime."

Torture, Murder and Donald Trump    :  Information Clearing House - ICH

Torture, Murder and Donald Trump    :  Information Clearing House - ICH

Torture,
Murder and Donald Trump

By Patrick
Martin



February
11, 2016 "Information
Clearing House
"
-
"WSWS"

Only four days
after his public defense of torture and “a hell of a
lot worse” in US military-intelligence
interrogations, billionaire Donald Trump added
assassination to his foreign policy arsenal as well.
Speaking Wednesday on the “CBS This Morning”
program, Trump said that his solution to the US
conflict with North Korea over its nuclear weapons
program would be to eliminate North Korean leader
Kim Jong-un.


“I would
get China to make that guy disappear in one form or
another very quickly,” Trump told interviewer Norah
O’Donnell. When she followed up by asking if that
meant having Kim Jong-un assassinated, Trump
replied, “Well, I’…

Muslimedia.com

Muslimedia.com: "Beyond these assumptions lies an even more disturbing thought pattern that has failed to grasp the true nature of the political system in Pakistan. Just because Pakistan was created in the name of Islam and its rulers have Muslim names, no-one should assume that they abide by any Islamic principles. After all, Imam Husain (ra) and his companions were not martyred by mushriks; those who carried out the massacre at Karbala were people with Muslim names who probably offered salah both before and after perpetrating the crime. There is no reason to believe that they did not also fast in the month of Ramadan and fulfil other basic Islamic obligations. The present-day Muslim rulers are much more removed from Islam, despite their Islamic credentials or pretensions, because they are subservient to the kuffar and dependant on them to stay in power."