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The [Wednesday] Papers

"The National Security Agency for almost three years searched a massive database of Americans' phone call records attempting to identify potential terrorists in violation of court-approved privacy rules, and the problem went unfixed because no one at the agency had a full technical understanding of how its system worked, according to new documents and senior government officials," the Washington Post reports.

"Moreover, it was Justice Department officials who discovered the problem and reported it to the court that oversees surveillance programs, the documents show, undermining assertions by the NSA that self-reporting is part of its culture.

"The improper activity went on from May 2006 to January 2009, according to a March 2009 opinion by Judge Reggie B. Walton, who serves on the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court.

"It was one of more than a dozen documents declassified and released Tuesday in response to lawsuits by civil liberties groups and at the direction of President Obama in the wake of the June disclosure by former NSA contractor Edward J. Snowden of the massive phone records collection."

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Well, not exactly at the direction of Obama, who is made out (again) as either a liar or an ignoramus by facts that don't (nearly) align with his assertions.

"Hundreds of documents on the government's secret interpretation of a section of the PATRIOT Act and the NSA's abuse of a massive database of Americans' phone records have been released," Kevin Gosztola reports at Firedoglake.

"President Barack Obama would like the public to believe this is part of the administration's effort to be the 'most transparent administration in history.' However, that is completely dishonest because the administration never wanted to release these documents."

Click through for the extensive record showing just that.

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Also, from the Electronic Frontier Foundation:

"[I]ntelligence officials said they were releasing this information in response to the presidential directive on transparency surrounding the NSA. That statement is misleading. They are releasing this information because a court ordered them to as part of EFF's Freedom of Information Act lawsuit, filed almost two years ago on the 10th anniversary of the Patriot Act."

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From a statement by Sens. Wyden and Udall:

"When the executive branch acknowledged last month that 'rules, regulations and court-imposed standards' intended to protect Americans' privacy had been violated thousands of times each year we said that this confirmation was 'the tip of a larger iceberg.'

"With the documents declassified and released this afternoon by the Director of National Intelligence, the public now has new information about the size and shape of that iceberg.

"Additional information about these violations was contained in other recently-released court opinions, though some significant information - particularly about violations pertaining to the bulk email records collection program - remains classified."

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Among the new revelations:

* Government Accountability Project: NSA Broke Privacy Rules For Years.

* NBC: NSA Collected Data On Secret 'Alert List' Of Phone Numbers.

* EFF: Lies, Word Games, And Searching For A Basis To Search.

* AP: The NSA Machine Too Big For Anyone To Understand.

* Emptywheel: NSA May Have 'Contact-Chained' Everyone In America.

* Washington Post: The NSA Is Sharing Data With Israel Before Filtering Out Americans' Information.

* TechEye: NSA Pretending It Is Google To Conduct Surveillance.

* International Business Times: NSA Shared Americans' Info From Phone Data Program With CIA, FBI.

* Reuters: Most 2006-2009 NSA Queries Of A Phone Database Broke Court Rules.

* Fox News: Judge Almost Shut Down Surveillance Program.

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Obama clearly did not tell the truth to the American people.

We can now fairly ask of the president: What did he know and when did he know it?

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The court-ordered release of these records also proves Edward Snowden right - Americans had every right to know about these abusive and unlawful programs. How is he not a whistleblower? And how is he not one of the most impactful whistleblowers in history? And how is this not a scandal of historic proportions?

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See also:

* Lee Hamilton: DOJ Should Indict James Clapper For Lying To Congress.

* Google, Microsoft, Facebook and Yahoo File Motions To Reveal NSA Data Requests.

* Five More Organizations Join Lawsuit Against NSA.

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Today's Police State Briefing:

* Guantanamo Judge Makes Secret Ruling On Secret Motion In Secret Hearing.

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Today's Department Of Told You So

If only someone in Chicago reported on this pattern before we elected the man president.

*

Me too.

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Apologies from Obamabots accepted via PayPal.

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Today's Syria Briefing
* AP Fact Check: Obama's Syria Case Still Lacks Proof.

* Human Rights Watch: What About Justice For Syria's Victims?

* The Atlantic: Daily Show Responds To The Worst Syria Arguments On Cable News.

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Elsewhere on the Beachwood today:

* Paraíso: Immigrant Window Cleaners At Work In Chicago.

* Fantasy Fix: Week 1's Epic Fails.

* Local TV Notes: More Fries, Less McCarthy.

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The Beachwood Tip Line: All apologies.



Permalink

Posted on September 11, 2013


MUSIC - The Weekend In Chicago Rock.
TV - Cricket vs. Brexit.
POLITICS - Charter Schools Complicit With Segregation.
SPORTS - USA Gymnastics Bans Illinois Coach.

BOOKS - The Randomness Of Harvard Admissions.

PEOPLE PLACES & THINGS - Public Lands Matter.


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