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NSA: Our Surveillance System Is Too Complex to Stop

erase

If this don’t beat all! That the NSA is arrogant enough to use this argument is bad enough, but for the Court to accept it is beyond belief. And they wonder why Americans’ trust in their Government is at historic lows. Why don’t they just abide by the Constitution? It’s not that hard! It just goes to show us they are all bought and paid for. – Shorty Dawkins, Associate Editor

This article comes from thenewamerican.com

Written by  Joe Wolverton, II, J.D

The National Security Agency (NSA) claims that its computers are so powerful that to try to protect data from erasure would have “an immediate, specific, and harmful impact on the national security of the United States.”

This is the argument put forth by the surveillance agency to excuse itself from preserving data relevant to numerous legal challenges it faces to the constitutionality of its dragnet collection of telephone and Internet activity.

District Court Judge Jeffrey S. White reversed an earlier order he had issued enjoining the federal government from destroying data that one of the plaintiffs — the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) — had requested be saved from the virtual shredder. Specifically, EFF wants to include information collected under Section 702 of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) Amendments.

The NSA balked, insisting that protecting the information would be overly burdensome.

“A requirement to preserve all data acquired under section 702 presents significant operational problems, only one of which is that the NSA may have to shut down all systems and databases that contain Section 702 information,” NSA Deputy Director Richard Ledgett claimed in a document submitted to the court.

He averred that due to the high complexity of the surveillance equipment, the attempt at preservation might not work and it if did, the safety of the United States could be imperiled.

Pointing to the regulations imposed by the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (the so-called FISA Court), Ledgett argued that the risks of data preservation far outweigh the rewards, and the complexity of such an operation outweighs them both.

“Communications acquired pursuant to Section 702 reside within multiple databases contained on multiple systems and the precise manner in which NSA stays consistent with its legal obligations under the [FISA Amendments Act] has resulted from years of detailed interaction” with the FISA Court and the Justice Department, Ledgett wrote in the filing quoted by the Washington Post.

The NSA routinely destroys data “via a combination of technical and human-based processes,” he added.

In an interview with the Washington Post, EFF’s legal director Cindy Cohn expressed her belief that the government’s excuses raised more concerns:

To me, it demonstrates that once the government has custody of this information even they can’t keep track of it anymore even for purposes of what they don’t want to destroy.

With the huge amounts of data that they’re gathering it’s not surprising to me that it’s difficult to keep track — that’s why I think it’s so dangerous for them to be collecting all this data en masse.

The NSA’s “our systems are too sophisticated to stop” argument sounds very similar to another excuse they gave Congress a couple of years ago.

In July of 2011 and again in May 2012, Senators Mark Udall (D-Colo.) and Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) wrote a letter to Director of National Intelligence James R. Clapper, Jr., asking him a series of four questions regarding the activities of the NSA and other intelligence agencies with reference to domestic surveillance.

In one of the questions, Udall and Wyden asked Clapper if “any apparently law-abiding Americans had their communications collected by the government pursuant to the FISA Amendments Act,” and if so, how many Americans were affected by this surveillance.

In a response to the inquiry dated June 15, 2012, I. Charles McCullough III informed the senators that calculating the number of Americans who’ve had their electronic communications “collected or reviewed” by the NSA was “beyond the capacity of his office and dedicating sufficient additional resources would likely impede the NSA’s mission.

In other words, the NSA was too busy illegally recording our private e-mails, texts, Facebook posts, and phone calls to figure out how many of us are already caught in their net. And furthermore, there is nothing Congress can do about it.

Read more here.

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ldiffey

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2 comments

  1. “The National Security Agency (NSA) claims that its computers are so powerful that to try to protect data from erasure would have “an immediate, specific, and harmful impact on the national security of the United States.””

    Actually the NSA is an “immediate, specific, and harmful impact on the national security of the United States” because it is working AGAINST the USA and our legitimate government.
    Destroying our nation and legitimate government is TREASON against the USA at whatever level you work within the NSA.

    There is NO constitutional amendment or anything else FOR spying on all Americans (or others) – AND USING SOME OF THAT INFORMATION TO blackmail SUPREME COURT JUDGES, REPRESENTATIVES, etc. There is one FORBIDDING IT UNLESS a crime has been committed and there is sworn testimony under Oath (criminal to break) that there is “reasonable cause” listing all areas to be searched, etc.

    “The NSA balked, insisting that protecting the information would be overly burdensome.

    “A requirement to preserve all data acquired under section 702 presents significant operational problems, only one of which is that the NSA may have to shut down all systems and databases that contain Section 702 information,” NSA Deputy Director Richard Ledgett claimed in a document submitted to the court.

    He averred that due to the high complexity of the surveillance equipment, the attempt at preservation might not work and it if did, the safety of the United States could be imperiled.”

    He lied, as does most of the administration if not all of them. The “safety of the United States could be imperiled”, IS imperiled if we do not know what ALL that information is that the NSA has collected. They destroy it to protect themselves ONLY, not this nation and its people.

    “… In other words, the NSA was too busy illegally recording our private e-mails, texts, Facebook posts, and phone calls to figure out how many of us are already caught in their net. And furthermore, there is nothing Congress can do about it.”

    You are correct that there is “nothing Congress can do about it” because they are in it up to their necks, along with other criminal and civil crimes. It is up to the constitutional directive of WHO enforces the US Constitution and the laws of this land, plus each state’s Constitution; and seeing to their enforcement against ALL foes – domestic and foreign. “We” are the ones responsible for enforcing the laws of this land, and are charged with it’s defense plus the defense of our homes, neighborhoods, cities, counties, states, and country.

    It says it here within the Constitution of the United States of America:

    US Constitution, Article I, Section. 8, Clause 11: “To declare War, grant Letters of Marque and Reprisal, and make Rules concerning Captures on Land and Water”.

    This is using private citizens in their own privately owned crafts to defend the USA and her people, this is using the Militia.

    And again here: Clause 15: “To provide for calling forth the Militia to execute the Laws of the Union, suppress Insurrections and repel invasions”.

    Yet again here: Clause 16: “To provide for organizing, ARMING, and disciplining, the Militia, and for governing such Part of them as may be employed in the Service of the United States, reserving to the States respectively, the Appointment of the Officers, and the Authority of training the Militia according to the discipline prescribed by Congress”.Clause 16: “To provide for organizing, ARMING, and disciplining, the Militia, and for governing such Part of them as may be employed in the Service of the United States, reserving to the States respectively, the Appointment of the Officers, and the Authority of training the Militia according to the discipline prescribed by Congress”.

    WE THE PEOPLE, and I am not talking about including the “relatively recent” hordes of illegal immigrants that has been flooding our nation so that the traitors can change it with them backing the traitors.

    It is past time to start charges, removing all unconstitutional judges (Only in as long as they use “Good Behaviour”), and dump all LEAs – state and federal EXCEPT for sheriffs as the US Constitution requires of us.

    Modern federal and state law enforcement agencies violates the Framers’ and the peoples most firmly held conceptions of criminal justice written into the US Constitution. Professional police were unknown to the United States until close to a half-century AFTER the Constitution’s ratification. Law enforcement under our legitimate government was a duty of every citizen. This was set up this way to protect the peoples liberty and natural rights, and to hold those who serve within the governments accountable to the people.
    The duty of US citizens to enforce the law was, and still is, a duty assigned to the people by the US Constitution. Many state constitutions also bind their citizens into a universal obligation to perform law enforcement functions within the state, to hold those who serve within the governments accountable to the contract they are under and to their oaths, plus to defend the nation as the Militia.

    Citizens were, and are still, expected to be armed, trained, and equipped to chase suspects by whatever means they had whenever summoned or needed. When the people are called upon to enforce the laws of the state or where ever needed, they were to respond “not faintly and with lagging steps, but honestly and bravely and with whatever implements and facilities [were] convenient and at hand.”

    The ONLY type of “law enforcement” the framers considered was safest for the freedom of the people, and to enforce our constitution’s was each state’s militia and that is what they put into the USA Constitution. The duty of mostly private citizens (and sheriffs and deputies) was as the state’s militia. The Militia’s existence deters crime in and of itself. Knowing that each home has at least one person armed and trained living within stops a lot of crime before it is committed. The Militia’s keep those within the state and federal governments honest – or more so – because they know that they are held accountable for the constitutions, their oath and actions while serving, employed by, and / or contracted by them. The US Constitution contains NO other provisions for criminal and civil law enforcement, enforcement of the state and federal constitutions, protecting each state’s borders where needed, and defending the nation when attacked except for the Militia. It assigns those duties to the people themselves because of those benefits listed above, plus the Militia alone keeps us free.

    That is WHY Joseph Stalin said in 1933: ”The United States should get rid of its militias”.

    What makes it worse is that those serving within our governments did EXACTLY that.

  2. Ohm, and as for dismantling the NSA, “unplug” it from ANY electricity of any sort and it will STOP.
    Then take everything out and wipe it clean, then use it in senior citizens and veterans organizations (kids learn to hack too quickly or I would say to them also) to use – separating every component, then arrest EVERY PERSON INVOLVED AT ANY LEVEL WITH THE NSA, even those who clean and cook there, deliver the mail as every assistance to the NSA makes their job easier, and destroys our nation more!

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