Lack of Intelligence

by craig on June 11, 2013 7:46 am in Uncategorized

I am astonished that still none of our pusillanimous media has published the simple fact that NSA and GCHQ share ALL intelligence reports with each other. Every member of the House of Commons who has ever been in the most junior ministerial position knows this – that amounts to hundreds. So do at least fifty thousand current or retired civil service and military personnel. So do the majority of senior journalists. Yet Hague was allowed to talk round the subject without being challenged about the truth, and the fiction of official secrecy persists.

The Guardian almost published the truth:

“It has been suggested GCHQ uses our partnership with the United States to get around UK law, obtaining information that they cannot legally obtain in the UK. I wish to be absolutely clear that this accusation is baseless. Any data obtained by us from the US involving UK nationals is subject to proper UK statutory controls and safeguards.”

This is the nub of the issue and the foreign secretary’s statement seems to mask a much more complex picture. If a UK agency wanted to tap the phone of a Briton living in the UK, it would have to get ministerial approval through RIPA. But not all telecoms and internet companies are based in the UK – most of the giants have their headquarters in the US. This is where the UK’s relationship with the NSA is critical. If the firm storing the required information is outside RIPA’s authority, GCHQ could ask the NSA for help.

And if the NSA had any relevant intelligence, via Prism or any other programme, it could give it to GCHQ. Strictly speaking, GCHQ would still have needed a RIPA authorisation if it was requesting this material. But if the NSA was offering, the same principles don’t appear to apply.

Matthew Ryder QC said: “It is not the breaking of laws that is most troubling in this area, but the absence of them. Foreigners storing their personal data on US servers have neither the protection that their own domestic laws would give them from their own governments, nor the protection that US citizens have from the US government. It is foreigners, potentially UK citizens in the UK, who are the targets of programmes like Prism.

“Once such data is in the hands of the US authorities, there is no clear legal framework that prevents it from being shared with UK authorities. The Security Service Act 1989 and the Intelligence Services Act 1994 place MI5, MI6 and GCHQ on a statutory basis, and permit those bodies to receive any information from foreign agencies in the ‘proper discharge’ of their statutory functions.

“Under that broad principle, UK agencies may receive and examine data from the US about UK citizens without having to comply with any of the legal requirements they would have to meet if the same agencies had tried to gather that information themselves.”

In fact GCHQ do not have to ask, and NSA do not have specifically to initiate. US citizens are included in the UK Prism operation, and UK citizens are included in the US Prism operation, and the swapping of resulting intelligence reports is an automatic process. So the UK takes the view it is not breaching the guidelines about spying on its own citizens as it is not REQUESTING the NSA to do anything, and vice versa.

It is precisely analogous to our receipt of intelligence from torture, which I was told as Ambassador was perfectly legal as long as we don’t request that the individual be tortured.

Tweet this post


  1. Dick the Prick

    11 Jun, 2013 - 8:06 am

    And then they wonder why they can’t even control the Tory party! Ha ha ha. Little shits. Apparently Cameron’s on the edge of a nervous breakdown and from my 2 associations – he frikkin’ well should be. Labour, too, can be killed from the inside although with guys like Doogie Alexander being promoted so high, who knows? Don’t need no hacking to read polls – Billy Hague’s fucked and Eric Pickles can go back to rigging mayoralties. Toodles! Arseholes. Call themselves Tories? If it doesn’t take 7 years, it’ll take 12 or 17 or 22 to get them back. Can anyone remember the great repeal act? No, me neither. Funny old business. Anyone career minded should choose Labour.

  2. 50,000 people know a secret and it has never been let out? Remarkable! Perhaps the idea is exaggerated in the first place?

  3. To repeat a comment from the last thread:

    10 Jun, 2013 – 4:17 pm
    This from The Guardian:

    @2013-06-10 09:40:04 UTC

    But he indicated that GCHQ might have also fallen foul of the law if it accepted information from the NSA on British citizens. “One of the big questions that is being asked is if British intelligence agencies want to seek to know the content of emails can they get round the normal law in the UK by simply asking an American agency to provide that information?” he said.

    @2013-06-10 13:40:38 UTC (about 4 hours later)

    But he indicated that GCHQ might have also fallen foul of the law if it requested information from the NSA on British citizens. “One of the big questions that is being asked is if British intelligence agencies want to seek to know the content of emails can they get round the normal law in the UK by simply asking an American agency to provide that information?” he said.

    Did anybody see what they did there?

  4. “I am astonished that still none of our pusillanimous media has published the simple fact that NSA and GCHQ share ALL intelligence reports with each other.”

    I can believe that Britain is a sufficiently supine satellite of the US to make all its intelligence unconditionally available to the US, but I find it hard to imagine the reverse.

    That said, you basic point is correct: it is hard to believe that the British state does not enjoy extra-legal access to all private electronic communication in the UK.

  5. I doubt many journalists are that conversant with the world of the security services. And those that are … well, let us just wonder aloud if they are not a little too conversant with said world. Not that journalists are ignorant, more that they don’t really look too closely, and accept what they are told by lawyers and senior editors. And what they are being told is that if they say too much, they’ll go to jail, or at least put their careers at risk.

    It’s a wondrous thing this propaganda model. So effective that people censor themselves, even censor their own thoughts. We are in the world of psychology here, not journalism as such.

  6. Oh yes. This is salient: “In fact GCHQ do not have to ask, and NSA do not have specifically to initiate. US citizens are included in the UK Prism operation, and US citizens are included in the UK Prism operation, and the swapping of resulting intelligence reports is an automatic process. So the UK takes the view it is not breaching the guidelines about spying on its own citizens as it is not REQUESTING the NSA to do anything, and vice versa.”

    And the bland official reassurances such as “The idea that in GCHQ people are sitting working out how to circumvent a UK law with another agency in another country is fanciful. It is nonsense.” (Billy Fourteen Pints)…are carefully constructed to avoid this point. It’s rather like Thatcher’s immortal “We have no plans to privatise the water supply”. She didn’t happen to have the plans with her on that day… A couple of years later, privatised water.

    “In order to protect the public, that does require, as President Obama said in Washington, some intrusion on privacy,” said the unspeakable Rifkind.
    1. The terrorists have won. They’ve subverted our freedoms.
    2. Putting Rifkind in charge of the enquiry is like getting Murdoch to investigate phone hacking.

  7. Brendan, on the other hand… I wonder if at a subtle level, there is a shift in the collective consciousness taking place, accelerated by the younger generation. Assange, Manning, Snowden and others are responding to the massive injustice we have seen unabated in this new millennium. There are signs of a real and meaningful polarisation taking place at a far deeper level that the peace ‘movement’ around the Vietnam War days.

    The internet is also facilitating and fuelling this. It is a double-edged sword: one that lends to a more efficient and effective information and communication platform to move the global conversation constructively towards greater justice in society. While on the other side the power wielders and brokers figure out ways to sustain their grip and control over the 99%.

    The real impact of the internet as a platform of change is yet to materialise in the way society and government are arranged. Governments and their financial-military-industrial combine still have the synergy of sheer money power. However, in the meantime, millions upon millions young people around the world are creating a 1+1=11 synergy in fundamentally questioning and challenging the fatal grip.

    Snowden’s actions are undoubtedly historic. He declared “I don’t want to live in a society that does these sort of things … I do not want to live in a world where everything I do and say is recorded’’

    In other words, perhaps there is a different psychology coming into play with the younger generation that has grown up with the internet.

  8. It will take some persistent and intelligent quizzing of Hague by MPs and journalists to make clear how he is being “economical with the actualité” in claiming that no law is being broken. Villager (above) has identified one of the key distinctions, that between “accepting” and “requesting” information. As Craig reminds us, the same distinction was used by Jack Straw to justify using (in intelligence assessments, though not as evidence in court)information secured by torturing prisoners.

    There’s a corollary that should, however, not be overlooked: a similar distinction is being made when Julian Assange’s WikiLeaks organization argues that it did not request the information provided by Bradley Manning. The difference between the two cases is that both Assange and Manning can present a strong public interest argument to justify making public certain information that governments have sought to restrict [in economic terms, market manipulation and insider trading]. What the information is naturally affects the strength of the argument that it is in the public interest for it to be published. In the case of torture – and similarly with slavery, genital mutilation and the deliberate killing of innocent people in peacetime – no such justification is possible, even though many attempt to use a debased utilitarian argument to do so.

  9. Am I the only one feeling a twinge of suspicion that this PowerPoint slide is a bit too good to be true? All those Yahoo, Facebook, Skype logos for the slow-learners. It reminds me a bit of those alleged 9/11 hijackers packing flight training manuals in their luggage.

  10. KoWN

    Yes, know what you mean. But it’s plausible, I think, as everything in the business world has to have logos and mission statements and irrelevant detail and be done by a PR company at immense expense. I imagine the NSA is similar. Also, reflect that Microsucks, with Windows 7 and the latest Office, have made it virtually impossible to produce a clear narrative while attempting to disable the multiple options for nasty colours and nursery shapes…

  11. Komodo, thanks, yes I take your point. I was just wondering, really. I guess I’m just a touch disappointed to learn that these days even Dr Strangelove has to give crappy PowerPoint presentations.

  12. I am astonished that still none of our pusillanimous media has published the simple fact that NSA and GCHQ share ALL intelligence reports with each other.

    I had assumed that’s because they’ve had a bloody great D Notice slapped on them:

    Presumably with menaces.

  13. Truth Is Free

    11 Jun, 2013 - 12:36 pm

    Nothing to hide nothing to fear. Demonstrators being arrested for the ‘pre-crime’ of intending to peacefully demonstrate. Nothing to hide nothing to fear.

  14. “US citizens are included in the UK Prism operation, and US citizens are included in the UK Prism operation”

    (second last paragraph)


  15. Abe Rene

    It is not exaggerated in the least. GHCQ and MI6 share all intelligence reports, and so do MI6 and the CIA. I saw such reports every day of my working life for 20 years, so I can assure you I perfectly well know of what I speak.

    When you receive the reports, signal intelligence (SIGINT) from GCHQ and NSA is covered in a blue jacket, human intelligence (HUMINT) from MI6 and CIA is in a red jacket. The only way you can tell US from UK intelligence is by the numeric code indicator at the start of the report. The format is precisely the same.

  16. We should follow the Prime Minister’s advice at the recent emergency in Woolwich and not take any notice of terrorist activity by organised-criminal-terrorist-state-governments. Any government institution that collects information for security purposes and then divulges it to private corporations in order to harrass individuals who do not submit to government authority has exceeded the legitimate scope of spying for state security.

    It’s like the fact that our ballot papers are numbered. The information would reveal our identities and we are reassured that it is kept secret. Government can and does divulge what it likes to third parties, 1/ by sharing it with other countries including the intelligence diaspora from Al Qaida to the US, 2/ by contracting security to private companies including Israeli companies, 3/ by revealing it directly to the media through direct and indirect contacts, 4/ by utilising even very low grade police officers to implement direct punitive treatment, spread disinformation which would lead others, individuals or corporations to give punitive treatment, or to license others to do it by removing the fear of redress or discovery.

    When you shop in the supermarket, minor errors occur at the till. That’s normal. If a pattern of error accumulates, you suspect dishonesty. But if you complain and no correction is made, you have evidence of corporate fraud. in the matter of government intelligence we are at the last, last stage, not the first.

    David Cameron made a bid recently to divert the Aid budget to funding Security, which is combined now with a proposal to divide Syria. We saw the way in which the information Gaddafi kept about Libyan citizens was deliberately released to his lawless successors to enable genocide. That was done by us. the same is about to be done in Syria by William Hague and David Cameron. because of the money crisis created by the Zionist bankers, Cameron is forced to deliver UK Aid to Israeli security companies to wrap up Israel’s neighbouring civilian population as it sees fit. Who needs Assad to control the Muslims, when the UK gives its direct authority through the aid budget.

    Sometimes a thing is not the problem itself, but the narrative underlying that thing is completely corrosive. If Israel succeeds in controlling Syria, why would Israel not go on to control the United Kingdom through an EDL government. You turn a blind eye to what your government does to others and you pretty soon find it is doing the same thing to yourself.

  17. If , as probably is the case, Snowden is a deliberate gaffe by the Hollywood film directors who run the world through the world’s media, then they probably calculate that they can focus the public’s imagination on the personal threat to themselves, which is trivial. The real threat lies in the hidden implications of NWO manipulation technique. The Anti-Christ is coming. Practise makes perfect, so practise on every piece of media generated manipulation, and you might not be completely taken-in by the AntiChrist.

  18. Ditto Naval military signals routed with the same NSA key unless double encrypted for the ship captain’s eyes only. I witnessed the same ‘NOT FOR SOUTH AFRICA EYES’ signals on US naval boats while inspecting their high speed printers.

    Attacks on American and British soil were separated by four years. One attack was a fear catalyst, the other attack a fear fortifier of the fear catalyst.(The Iraq war took longer than projected) and to this very day people and children in Iraq are still dying in conflict, venom and toxins.

  19. I guess I’m just a touch disappointed to learn that these days even Dr Strangelove has to give crappy PowerPoint presentations.

    It’s mandatory at Watford. You thought it was a Hitler salute, but he is just signalling to his flunkey to change the PP slide. Actually, I suspect that abolishing Power Point would have an even greater impact on human happiness than poisoning Osborne’s champagne…but I digress.

  20. Jonangus Mackay

    11 Jun, 2013 - 1:34 pm

    @Declan No mishtake shurely. What in the realm of magazine advertising used to be—maybe still is—known, oddly enough, as a contra deal.

  21. Jonangus Mackay

    11 Jun, 2013 - 1:36 pm

    Surprised no one has pointed out its privileged strategic position permits Israel de facto access to the data of US & UK citizens.

  22. Mark
    My parents had a friend who was an HM Art Inspector who enjoyed pulling rank on quite senior military. Fear fortifier sounds like something from John Bunyan’s Pilgrim’s Progress. Morally invigourating to the spiritually lazy.

  23. Flaming June

    11 Jun, 2013 - 1:42 pm

    From Medialens

    Russia ready to consider asylum for NSA whistleblower Snowden
    Posted by Richard on June 11, 2013, 11:21 am

    Russia is willing to consider granting political asylum for NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden, who blew the lid on the US PRISM program, Russian media reported. Snowden dropped out of sight Monday after he was last seen checking out of a Hong Kong hotel.

    If we receive such a request, we will consider it,” Kommersant daily quoted President Vladimir Putin’s press secretary Dmitry Peskov as saying.

    Snowden, a 29-year-old former technical assistant for the CIA and current employee of the defense contractor Booz Allen Hamilton, revealed the existence of PRISM, the National Security Agency’s (NSA) massive data-mining surveillance program which gave the agency backdoor access to emails, videos, chats, photos and search queries from nine worldwide tech giants.

    The whistleblower disappeared after checking out of a Hong Kong hotel, Reuters quoted witnesses as saying. A day earlier Snowden revealed his identity to The Guardian newspaper.

    The revelations of Edward Snowden have been condemned by senior US lawmakers, who threatened the whistleblower with prosecution. Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) on Monday called Snowden’s NSA leaks an “act of treason.”

    Chairman of the House homeland security subcommittee Peter King stressed that if Edward Snowden is the leaker, then the US “must prosecute him to the fullest extent of the law and begin extradition proceedings at the earliest date.”

    On Monday, Regina Ip, formerly Hong Kong’s top official overseeing security, told reporters it would be in Snowden’s “best interest to leave Hong Kong,” citing an extradition treaty with the United States that was signed in 1996.


    that probably puts the triad assassination option higher up the list nm – MikeD Today, 12:46 pm

  24. “Surprised no one has pointed out its privileged strategic position permits Israel de facto access to the data of US & UK citizens.”

    Who do you think collects the data in the first place? :-)

  25. Flaming June

    11 Jun, 2013 - 1:53 pm


    Quite a big protest against the G8 is happening in Central London

  26. Jonangus Mackay

    11 Jun, 2013 - 1:54 pm


  27. With what other countries is the US sharing the data they collect on UK citizens? We can be sure that, if it were in their interest, the US would trade such data without scruple.

    Also what else does the UK do, apart from browsing intelligence reports, care of the US secret services?
    Is it not reasonable to assume that agents within the UK, if they appeared employed by the US, could carry out actions against UK citizens that the law here would not permit? (They have similar arrangements on the continent, so why not here?)

  28. How could there unqualified sharing? Even after all the problems with Blunt et al? Surely it is or has at some times been limited sharing?

  29. Another centrally organised demonstration undermined and thwarted, because people are daft at communicating.

    What did they expect, all of them in one place, when they could be elsewhere. Organising demonstrations will have to take on more imaginary forms.

    NGO’s should also make clear where they stand, they can’t carry on sniping from the sidelines and when it comes to action, they jump on to the fence.

    Continuous bungling such as this makes me wonder whether the UK NGO’s have all been undermined and infiltrated by undercover police officers, whether any of them can mount an effective non violent protest without being hounded by the police.

  30. Sorry, off topic, but yet another chapter detailing the honesty of UK governments/s


  31. @Craig “I saw such reports every day of my working life for 20 years, so I can assure you I perfectly well know of what I speak. ”

    I’m not disputing this. I was just sceptical that something known to so many people could be kept from spilling out. Doesn’t the US for example have “NOFORN” documents, or those requiring “Yankee white” clearance, which wouldn’t be shared with the UK’s secret services? Wasn’t that a problem in Iraq, creating the farcical situation that the SAS would gathwer intelligence and give it to the US on Monday (so to speak), the US would classify it NOFORN on Tuesday, and so the UK’s soldiers couldn’t have it on Wednesday even if they needed it?

  32. Bubbleslug

    Were the pellets red or blue? You are now part of the food chain. I’m not going to eat you.

  33. O/T, but compelling:
    From the Komodo Cavern of Situations You Wrongly Thought Couldn’t Get Worse…

  34. Returning to the matter before us –
    Ben Franklin and his friend get the kudos for this link:

    In which we learn:

    Verint and Narus created programs which offered the NSA backdoors to all the major U.S. telecommuications and technology companies including Facebook, Microsoft, Google. That’s how the companies could deny that they explicitly knew or approved of PRISM’s harvesting their data:

    Both Verint and Narus were founded in Israel in the 1990s. Both provide monitoring and intercept capabilities to service providers and government organizations, promoting claims that their equipment can access and retain large amounts of information on a vast number of targets.

    From Robert Poe of Wired:

    Narus’ product, the Semantic Traffic Analyzer, is a software application that runs on standard IBM or Dell servers using the Linux operating system. It’s renowned within certain circles for its ability to inspect traffic in real time on high-bandwidth pipes, identifying packets of interest as they race by at up to 10 Gbps.

    “*Anything that comes through (an internet protocol network), we can record,” Steve Bannerman, marketing vice president of Narus, a Mountain View, California company, said. “We can reconstruct all of their e-mails along with attachments, see what web pages they clicked on, we can reconstruct their (voice over internet protocol) calls.”

    With a telecom wiretap the NSA only needs companies like Microsoft, Google, and Apple to passively participate while the agency to intercepts, stores, and analyzes their communication data. The indirect nature of the agreement would provide tech giants with plausible deniability.

    And having a foreign contractor bug the telecom grid would mean that the NSA gained access to most of the domestic traffic flowing through the U.S. without technically doing it themselves.

    So the NSA’s mad plan to record everything everywhere gave Israel complete access to all American communications. If you complain about that situation, you’re an anti-Semite. If you are an insider and you complain (as Toobin suggests) to the “proper authorities,” they will fire you and frame you. If you are an insider and you tell the public what’s really going on, Diane Feinstein will call you a traitor — and the Obama crew will do to you what they did to Bradley Manning. Or worse.

    Wasn’t joking, John Angus.

  35. technicolour

    11 Jun, 2013 - 3:18 pm

    This doesn’t seem to be getting out either:

    Occupy Gezi
    Ismail Demirci, one of the attorneys under custody tweets:
    “We’re kept under custody in a lawless way right now. Nothing written, no order, no written proceedings, not even water until our friends arrived.”
    ” We’re 49 attorneys under custody and taken to Vatan Police Station by force”
    ” We’re now in Vatan Police Station but no explanations, no written proceedings, not even a permit from the prosecution office. ”

  36. Ben Franklin -Machine Gun Preacher (unleaded version)

    11 Jun, 2013 - 3:24 pm

    Komodo; Just announced that the Feds are preparing to charge Snowden while at the same time Obama says he welcomes this debate.

    Wheels within wheels, but when we understand how they work, they can actually transport all of us, not just a few.

  37. There are many laws in our respective jurisdictions (US, UK, Oz etc) governing access to computer systems and data. To what extent have American intelligence agencies broken our laws in obtaining unauthorised access to our private data? Even copyright laws. Do existing treaties provide us with a legal remedy? Are local prosecutors prepared to seek extradition and prosecution of American citizens involved in unlawful access to computer systems and data? Are there any lawyers out there who are willing to explore a possible class action against American and associated local agencies who broke local laws? 

    We are by now used to American prosecutors hunting down people in foreign jurisdictions for alleged breaches of copyright. Kim Dot Com in New Zealand being one example amongst many. Will Americans, or their representatives in our local jurisdictions, be willing to prosecute those involved in spying on us? 

    Maybe it’s time that we disengage with the US.

  38. Jonangus Mackay

    11 Jun, 2013 - 4:17 pm

    @Komodo By ‘LOL’ I meant not to suggest that you were joking but that what you were implying should be so obvious on reflection, particularly in the present context, as to be laughable.

    A further, less dramatic but nonetheless significant, example. The San Diego-based net-filtering company Websense is one of a handful that dominate the global market. Its clients include the state of Yemen. Its Wikipedia entry includes the following, because some years ago I put it there:

    ‘Websense’s proprietary Deep Content Control is software designed to protect confidential information. The company says it is a combination of its ThreatSeeker and PreciseID technologies. PreciseID uses software first developed for the Israeli military. The company has a Data Loss Prevention product called Information Leak Prevention, which was developed by the Israel-based data security company PortAuthority Technologies. In December 2006 Websense bought PortAuthority for $90 million. Announcing the take-over, Websense said that it was “committed to maintaining the company’s research and development presence in Israel.”‘

  39. Thanks Jonangus. All grist to the mill. I believe some Israelis built the London Underground’s surveillance systems, too. And…

  40. Jonangus Mackay

    11 Jun, 2013 - 4:32 pm

    Possibly as a result, indeed, of the relevant disclosure in the article itself, I note that the Websense entry now includes the following:

    ‘Websense was finally discontinued in Yemen sometime around January 2011 and apparently it is no longer being used in any Middle East or North Africa country.’

  41. Flaming June

    11 Jun, 2013 - 4:33 pm


    10 Jun 2013

    The Air Force’s 624th Operations Center sent an e-mail with a NOTAM (Notice to Airmen) that prohibits them from accessing and reading news stories related to the current National Security Agency snooping controversy on the Air Force’s NIPRNET (Non-Secure Internet Protocol Router Network) systems.

    The 624th Operations Center, located at Lackland Air Force Base in Texas, is the operational arm for the 24th Air Force’s cyberspace operations capability.


    Have you noticed how the powers-that-be love their acronyms?

  42. This just fired out by the Warshington Post email alert:

    See how valuable are the NSA’s efforts in the fight against cyberterrorism?

    Pretty lame as a PR response to Snowden. I’m sure we’ll be seeing much more in the coming days though.

    At least the BBC are just about staying with the story (awkward subplots notwithstanding)

  43. Flaming June

    11 Jun, 2013 - 4:41 pm

    Two of our straight-faced state broadcasters on BBC News have just announced that the Greek state broadcaster (their words) is closing down and 2,700 jobs are going. I think the irony was lost on them.


    Cartoon in Guardian.

    Steve Bell on William Hague’s statement about GCHQ and the secret NSA operation.

    Foreign secretary’s statement to the House of Commons offered a straightforward and robust defence

  44. Still not convinced by the Snowden narrative.

    It’s just all so…pat.

    The Guardian as leaks portal,the Daily Fail running pics of his attractive ballerina in her knickers.The Hong Kong angle.

    If he ends up going over to China i will be convinced he’s a US disinfo Trojan.

    I can almost smell his spookmasters game-theorying the whole scene,possibly going back years to assemble a back story.

    What would George Smiley think if this case landed on his desk?

  45. This from German Justice minister Ms. Leutheuser- Schnarrenberger.

    “We should remember that the strength of the liberal constitutional state lies in the trust of its citizens. Constitutional guarantees protect this trust and pursue two objectives: to punish the guilty and to protect the innocent or those who are unjustly suspected of a crime against wrongful actions by the government. These are precisely the tenets Germany adopted in 1949 from the tradition of the American Constitution of 1776 — namely that in a free and open democratic process, it is important to avoid the impression that the protection of basic rights is not being taken seriously enough.”

    On that subject it is also important to be seen to do the right thing, playing at it, knowing full well that the ECHELON program spied on EU, French,Italian and German armaments from as long as Menwith Hill and Fylingdales were operational. Many contracts were lost,undermined and outbid, due to this form of industrial military espionage.

    The intellectual property rights of the material stored does belong to the originators. If they have not agreed to this kind of secret storage, weren’t made aware of it, then this kind of filtering and data-mining should be illegal.

    The stated opt out hold no water, and as Komodo said, if the Israeli’s have their hands in this information gathering pie, we should be worried.

  46. I think it is how it goes down in America that matters most – that they’re being spyed on by their own is acceptable to many, as is the same from those plucky little Israelis – but being spyed by some public-school educated, lithping, spotted bow-tie wearing limeys?

  47. Yes, the US and UK have been circumventing national laws for more than thirty years, which is one of the things that makes the relationship “special”. But while the US wants information on the habits of Facebook, Twitter and Google users, it does not want its own dirty secrets hung out to dry. This should disgust proper-minded people. The photographs, though details are obscured, clearly shows US military personnel sexual abusing and raping prisoners (at least one under-age), before doing what the US does best to Muslims – killing them.

    This is real rape not the consensual sex which Swedes call rape.

  48. If true that IsRaEli companies are supplying data to the NSA/GCHQ, this would go a long way to explaining who was really responsible for 9/11. And, what a great opportunity for commercial espionage and blackmail. Collect all the phone and internet activity of Judge X then threaten to leak the information to the media if he refuses to vote in your favour. Would also explain the huge influence of IsRaEli ‘friends’ throughout US media and Congress.

  49. Flaming June

    11 Jun, 2013 - 6:31 pm

    Joe Emersberger and the BBC’s Rory Cellan Jones on surveillance.

    A BBC “Watchdog” who embraces sleeping rather than barking
    Jun 11, 2013

    Cellan Jones is more interested in gadgets like the new Play Station and X Box.

    ‘He is married to the Vice Chairman of the BBC Trust Diane Coyle, a former adviser to HM Treasury.’

  50. Jonangus Mackay, 4.32pm

    Did you say Websense? Interesting. That’ll be one of the sponsors of this shower then, along with BlueCoat:

    Integralis Security World Confereence, happening today:

    I noticed this because one of my least favourite people – well-known Wikileaks saboteur and whistleblower documents shredder Daniel Domscheit-Berg is giving the keynote address.

    This is Integralis:

    Here’s their partners:

    We know BlueCoat from the Wikileaks Spyfiles of companies selling their vile surveillance systems to repressive regimes:

    and, of course, this:

    Syria using American software to censor Internet, experts say:

    Well, well, small world…

  51. “I’m not disputing this. I was just sceptical that something known to so many people could be kept from spilling out.”

    It did spill out, I knew about it, I was talking about it in the One Choice for Scotland thread.

  52. Flaming June
    11 Jun, 2013 – 1:42 pm

    Mary, do you have any quotation marks? I’d add my request to others before me. Also what is the point of copy and pasting a whole article (in this case even with the comment left at medialens) when you’re providing the link or vice-versa?

  53. Technicolour, yes that matter of detaining the lawyers in Turkey, absolutely incredible and disgraceful. There’s a real polarisation going on there. The arrogant and powerful Erdogan is feeding into it defiantly. Btw, the Turkey thread is alive and kicking and i reckon it still has some distance to go, but appears very little interest here or compassion for the young, middle class, progressive Turks crying to be heard, with tear-gas in their eyes and passion in their hearts.

    I wonder how many people understand that the word compassion is related to suffering,

  54. I can’t remember who posted this, or where,

    Photo of the “security establishment” in the USA

  55. If the Turkish protestors keep coming back after being cleared, eventually more of them are going to die. This will put our Governments in a tricky position. They’ll either stay silent like they did when Egypt was exploding, or they will call for restraint on both sides like they do when Israel is slaughtering civilians. So maybe it’s not tricky at all for them!
    Erdogan is privatising everything that isn’t nailed down. Turkey is vital for capitalism in so many ways, not least the US bases. If Erdogan is indeed damaged goods expect a visit from John Kerry, as happened literally hours before Pharaoh Morsi took the helm in Egypt. That time it was Hillary who anointed him, before she was Benghazied.

  56. The EU attitude as reported by the Guardian appears to be very different from that of our much loved government. Before it’s pointed out to me, though, I don’t believe absolutely everything I read … but there appear to be still some significant differences.

    Could this be the way that the US loses some of it’s worldwide power … by leaving allied/friendly governments so scared of the backlash from their own populations that they at least go through the motions of stepping back?

  57. Truth Is Free

    11 Jun, 2013 - 11:19 pm

    In the early 60s nuclear devices were planted in many major Western European cities as part of the CIA’s operation Gladio. Another part of Gladio was the creation of a secret paramilitary army that would be used to carry out an insurgency against soviet forces. Many will be aware that Gladio was also used to carry out ‘terror’ attacks in Western Europe, many involving the deaths of civilians.

    Getting back to these nuclear weapons; they can be activated and armed remotely via radio. Israel have had access to the frequencies, activation and arming codes since the late 60s. All Western European governments are aware of this. The French withdrew from NATO in 1966 when they learned about the Gladio nukes. It was only when Israeli Sayanim and part time Mossad agent Sarkozy was elected that France rejoined NATO and they have been a tool for US policy since. No doubt they also got some new radio controlled nukes in Paris, it’s part of the NATO deal.

    The devices have been mentioned in some of the wikileaks cables, which suggest that they have been a source of contention between the US and Europe since the end of the cold war. This also answers a lot of questions regarding the Israeli frequently bragged about ‘Samson’ option, mainly how on Earth can Israel wipe out Western Europe when it has no appropriate missile capability? Well, now you know. Sleep tight.

  58. Villager

    All nations that have previously had great empires, ourselves, China, Turkey, Persia, Rome, Mughal India, have a strong, sentimental belief in an imaginary noble past. There will always be conflict between those who are looking forward at reality and those who are looking to the past.

    Surely if greatness is to be found it is to be found in ourselves, looking at reality, how life is. Egodan maybe sincerely represents those who remember an Islamic heritage. But Islam is for now, for practise, for mental health and social cohesion. Even we have become completely fed up with the likes of Cameron and Hague and Blair wafting noble sentiments under our noses while spending the rest of the time sniffing Israel’s arse.

  59. truth is free

    On a day that Obama was tuned into his nice-guy personality he ‘welcomed’ the security debate. Assange is also a worked-in-progress individual, so sensible people do not take Wikileaks at face value. No references given and none asked for. Thanks for giving us a bedtime laugh.

  60. Evil Bastard Features Rears its ugly Venomous Skull

    “Either you’re with us or you’re against us,” McCain explained to anchor Freddie Lyon, “and clearly the nation of Hong Kong is against us. By harboring this known cybercriminal they pose a clear and present danger to the American people.

    “I don’t want to hear about extradition or rendition or any of that nonsense. This man is a traitor and if we don’t get him within 24 hours I say we need to start bombing the hell out of Hong Kong.

    So sad,, Tears for Fears

  61. “This also answers a lot of questions regarding the Israeli frequently bragged about ‘Samson’ option, mainly how on Earth can Israel wipe out Western Europe when it has no appropriate missile capability?”

    They have the capability, they have Dolphin class submarines.

  62. ‘Every member of the House of Commons who has ever been in the most junior ministerial position knows this – that amounts to hundreds. So do at least fifty thousand current or retired civil service and military personnel. So do the majority of senior journalists.’

    The extent to which the political establishment indulges in such doublethink on ‘security’ issues is always revealing. Keep rubbing their noses in it Craig.

    O/T but another nightmarish, Orwellian scenario is revealed in this report-

  63. Fred They OWN The USA ..and fucking everything else…But you already know that…

    Chossudovsky: We’ve known from day one that Israel has supported al-Qaeda. And we also know that Israel has channeled weapons and logistic support to the rebels in the areas surrounding the occupied areas of the Golan Heights. And in fact Israel even established a hospital facility for the al-Qaeda rebels and was busing them back and forth, taking the wounded to the hospital and then sending them back to the war theatre.

  64. Thank goodness for satire

  65. Was referring to McCain. Should have hit Refresh.

  66. with both major UK political parties at Bilderberg in Watford last week – and Republican Boehner calling Snowden a traitor today – it is evident fascism is alive & well. the institution of democratic politics has been corrupted & needs to be cleaned up.

    Snowden highlights links between private sector and spies
    Booz Allen, along with General Dynamics, Lockheed Martin and Northrop Grumman, have generated millions in revenues from cybersecurity contracts
    with the US government.

    (Republican) Boehner calls NSA leaker Snowden ‘a traitor’
    Former congressman and presidential candidate Ron Paul applauded Snowden’s efforts, saying that the NSA leak has forced the president to be even more transparent with Americans.
    “We should be thankful for individuals like Edward Snowden and Glenn Greenwald who see injustice being carried out by their own government and speak out, despite the risk,” said Paul in a statement on the Web site of Campaign for Liberty, his nonprofit. “They have done a great service to the American people by exposing the truth about what our government is doing in secret.”
    “For somebody to tell the American people the truth is a heroic effort,” Paul said to CNN’s Piers Morgan Monday.

  67. Ben Franklin -Machine Gun Preacher (unleaded version)

    12 Jun, 2013 - 1:00 am

    “Should have hit Refresh.”

    You must be jacked-in to American politics, Dreolin. McClain is as disconnected as Obama is, to his base. That makes them co-equals, I think.


    ” Boehner calls NSA leaker Snowden ‘a traitor’”

    Isn’t everyone who doesn’t swallow the Flounder whole?

  68. BrianFujisan

    It’s no good quoting trash from Press TV and Global Research to prove a point. Just because Israel controls the US and UK doesn’t mean it doesn’t control Russia and China. How? B A N K S. Just because it uses Iranian soldiers to defend Assad doesn’t mean it doesn’t support Al Qaida. How? First you have to work out why Zionism thinks it can get the better of God. If somebody thinks they can deceive God, they should have worked out how to deceive humans.
    Anyway interviews can be chopped and changed to mean what editors like.

  69. Prism & Putin

    “..nothing we didn’t know before” -surveillance is becoming a global phenomenon in the context of combating international terrorism; such methods are generally practicable, the question is how well those security agencies are controlled by the public.”

    “I can tell you that, at least in Russia, you cannot just go and tap into someone’s phone conversation without a warrant issued by court.”

    “That’s more or less the way a civilized society should go about fighting terrorism with modern-day technology. As long as it is exercised within the boundaries of the law that regulates intelligence activities, it’s alright. But if it’s unlawful, then it’s bad.”

    “Our Western counterparts often tell us that the Al-Nusra is one of the key organizations in the Syrian military opposition. But it has been dubbed terrorist by the US Department of State, and it doesn’t even hide its links to Al-Qaeda. So will you let this organization join the future government of Syria? Our Western counterparts say no. Are you going to just make them go away once you have victory in Syria? They don’t know. It’s totally unclear.”

    “What do you have there now? There is a war of everybody against everybody among various tribes, there is war for resources, and, I’m afraid, if we go the same way in Syria, there will be same havoc in Syria that we’re now witnessing in Libya.”

    “Isn’t that enough from what we’re seeing in Pakistan and Afghanistan right now, where there’re terrorists that are not controlled by anyone, except for terrorists?”

  70. BrianFujisan

    12 Jun, 2013 - 1:17 am

    i dont quote from press tv

  71. Ben,
    McCain is nearly (?) as bad as John Bolton. And that’s saying something. Interesting article in Information Clearing House about the possibilites regarding his warmongering:

  72. Ben Franklin -Machine Gun Preacher (unleaded version)

    12 Jun, 2013 - 1:32 am

    Mark; i would love some more links from you. (as do you, Irish Rose Dreoilin) they are treasures we can access nearly forever as we need.

    God Bless all ye of good intentions.

  73. BrianFujisan
    I think Press TV came up in your link to Global Research.

  74. I can’t sign this, but I’d urge my American friends to do so. It calls for a pre-emptive Pardon for Edward Snowden, the Patriot who blew the whistle on the NSA, and a man who should not have to forego his country as a consequence of his love for his country:

    The EFF rebuts the argument “it’s only metadata, we’re not recording the content”:

    Here’s an explanation of how the British could have pre-emptively apprehended Paul Revere using the simplest of metadata:

    Benjamin Franklin was right: “They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety.” In other words, to build the system that claims to keep us safe from terrorism is to create the system that will one-day perpetuate a tyranny.
    Democracy only works if, there is a practical mechanism for the people to excercise their right to alter or to abolish a government that becomes destructive of the ends for which it was elected: empowering a secret police to monitor for dissent and impose prior restraint does not seem wise.

  75. Flaming June

    12 Jun, 2013 - 6:42 am

    Google and co are attempting to disassociate themselves from the stench.

    U.S. tech firms push for govt transparency on security
    By Gerry Shih and Bill Rigby Reuters – 2 hours 24 minutes ago…

    SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) – Three of the largest U.S. Internet companies called on the U.S. government to provide greater transparency on national security requests on Tuesday, as they sought to distance themselves from reports that portrayed the companies as willing partners in supplying mass user data to security agencies.

    Google Inc was the first to go public, releasing an open letter asking the U.S. Department of Justice for permission to disclose the number and scope of data requests each receives from security agencies, including confidential requests made under the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA). Microsoft Corp and Facebook Inc soon followed with similarly worded statements in support of Google.


  76. Does it matter how many thumbs get stuck in the pie, when the pie is far too crusty;

  77. Jonangus Mackay

    12 Jun, 2013 - 7:58 am

    More scrutiny needed. Israeli spyware at core of NSA/GCHQ dragnet surveillance signifies what?

  78. Jonangus Mackay

    12 Jun, 2013 - 8:00 am

    Haaretz on NSA’s reliance on Israeli spyware companies: &

  79. flaming june I think you have hit on a key point. Google and the other big US internet companies are right now in a panic mode. They have been collecting information on email and internet users for American intelligence agencies for a number of years now. This is directly related to Craig’s point leading into this thread: US intelligence has been spying on British and European telecommunication networks for at least 8 years using the massive computer networks in Fort Meade, Maryland. Since it is illegal for British and European countries to spy on themselves, the US provides them with the information.

    The people of Britain and Europe are now beginning to realize that they are subjects of massive spying. And it is all coming from the US and no local laws are being violated. For sure you must know that it is not illegal for the US to spy on Britain and Europe. Nor is it illegal for the US to pass on their intelligence to British and European agencies. And the big foot in the door that us Americans have (excuse me, I am writing from the US) is that Google, Twitter, Microsoft, Apple and Facebook are all American companies (not just American but located in just two counties on the SF peninsula in Northern California).

    It is so impressive how Europe is so willing to come under US dominion and surveillance. You do know how it is done don’t you? Once your various PMs and whatever titles retire they are hired into US multinational corporations. Major and Blair are worth $100 s of millions for their service to the US as you must know.

    It will be interesting to see if any of you guys can come to your senses and mount a realistic campaign against what us Americans are doing to you.

  80. Flaming June

    12 Jun, 2013 - 8:19 am

    Has this info reached this blog yet?

    IDF Unit 8200 Cyberwar Veterans Developed NSA Snooping Technology

    by Richard Silverstein on June 8, 2013

    A little known footnote to the brewing PRISM scandal, in which the NSA has for years harvested Americans’ personal data via eight of the largest social media and technology companies in the world, involves special technology developed by two Israeli companies founded by veterans of the IDF’s cyber-warfare Unit 8200:

    If America’s tech giants didn’t ‘participate knowingly’ in the dragnet of electronic communication, how does the NSA get all of their data?

    One theory: the NSA hired two secretive Israeli companies to wiretap the U.S. telecommunications network.

    Verint and Narus created programs which offered the NSA backdoors to all the major U.S. telecommuications and technology companies including Facebook, Microsoft, Google. That’s how the companies could deny that they explicitly knew or approved of PRISM’s harvesting their data:


  81. Flaming June

    12 Jun, 2013 - 8:26 am

    Yes it had. Missed seeing Jonangus’s posts.

    Ref Facebook, this is how our MPs spend their time at the HoC. That is when they are actually there and not on holiday.

    How MPs racked up 3m Facebook hits: Figures show they waste thousands of hours on social networks and betting sites
    Records show computers on Parliamentary estate accessed Facebook 400 times as often as BBC News website
    Online games and betting sites also clocked up thousands of visits

    By Jason Groves, Political Correspondent

    12 June 2013

  82. @richard

    That ‘Revere’ link is fascinating – and very scary.

  83. @John Goss “The photographs..shows US military personnel sexual abusing..before doing what the US does best to Muslims – killing them.”

    These are shocking crimes and the people responsible need to be brought to justice. I object to the last phrase as a blanket characterisation of a whole country. But it illustrates the reason why all the photos weren’t released, namely that they would inflame anti-Americanism.

  84. Brian Fujisan at 11.52 last night. McCain is the truthful, naive and disgusting voice of the US government’s hidden agenda. He makes the point that Hong Kong, being a small protectorate of China with some autonomy and a strategic port it would be useful to US aims (he did not say world domination but everyone knows what he meant), and with all the residents speaking English it would be easy to bomb it and take over and soon they would come round to seeing how good the Yankie way of life is. “In time Hong Kongers will come to love our rule – just like the Hawaiians, the Filipinos and the Afghans.”

    You would not want to step on a lump of shit like McCain. The stench would never go away.

  85. Abe Rene, you do right to object to it being a “blanket characterisation of the whole country”. I agree all Americans are not like those unspeakable US military personnel who raped and killed children in Iraq. Sometimes we do make generalisations when we have been upset by what we have seen but I did not mean to include all Americans, some of whom are my friends. In fact I write for a US online magazine and would not want to include in my generalisation good people who are trying to put right what is wrong with a great country that gave Americans the Bill of Rights, just those who abuse that gift to mankind.

  86. ToivoS. Well said. Most people commenting on this blog have not been blind to what is going on, though a few would like to blind us.

  87. Truth Is Free

    12 Jun, 2013 - 9:14 am

    “They have the capability, they have Dolphin class submarines.”

    They have only had those subs for 14 years and only had missile capability since 2005.

    Are people so wilfully ignorant or do they just like dishing out disinfo for their masters? So, what about Gladio? What about the nukes in Europe’s capitals? What about false flag terrorism? That’s all true but the Israeli bit is a lie? Pathetic.

    The Samson Option capability, i.e. the threat to destroy Western Europe, was first openly publicised by Israel in the early 70s – 40 years ago. So, according to you they’re just great big liars and the reason every nation kow-tows to them is because they really are Gods chosen people? A bit of a contradiction isn’t it?

    It’ nice to see that you tacitly acknowledge that Israel is a nuclear threat to Western Europe however, now look at their national character and take it to the logical conclusion based on the PUBLISHED information available. Naive morons can go and stick your collective heads back in the sand on this one, or even join with the gatekeepers of the conspiracy to enslave humanity.

    You can lead a horse to water but you can’t make it drink. I will not pity any of you in the future.

  88. “The Samson Option capability, i.e. the threat to destroy Western Europe”

    Samson brought down the temple on his own head in order to kill his enemies. I think what it means is if they couldn’t have Palestine nobody else would get it either.

  89. Flaming June

    12 Jun, 2013 - 9:43 am

    There was an excellent ending to Richard Silverstein’s blog post about Varint and Narus.

    ‘To which I say: if you want a society like Israel’s obsessed with national security and willing to pay any price for it, then don’t object to PRISM or the wholesale harvesting of virtually everything personal you might have (except your thoughts, which they haven’t figured out how to harvest yet). If this is not your vision of what society should be, then yell your head off.’

  90. Antisemitic lol –

    If only he’d said ‘bloody hippie.’… poor Patrick. When the D of E snuffs it, he can step straight into the job.

  91. Truth is free, thanks for your reminder of Gladio, nukes disguised as air condition units etc. Another numb nut idea that will only result in self destruction, whether it is Israel or anybody else indulging in such fantasy, you would not want to live on earth after a medium tactical nuclear exchange or attack.

    So why should anybody be so shit stupid to commit suicide?

    The debate is not about who’s best at digging up the smelliest pile of rumours, but to tell the NSA that they have gone too far.

    People will make their own decision regards to internet security, encrypting is one way, it might not be able stop them, but it will force those snoops to eat their muesli and do the work.
    The elation that must be felt after four days of solid deciphering when one finds out that a coffee morning has happened the same day.
    A coffee morning were issues were discussed nobody will ever find out about. lets not forget the power of meeting people and talking, still the safest form of communicating, in a park or back garden or elsewhere without CCTV.

    Thanks for that link showing the vector search option these days, Richard, very interesting to analysts of all sorts, this ‘market data’ of internet consumers. George Orwell is standing at the doorstep, best ask Suhayl to put the kettle on.

    @John Goss, agree on McCain, he’s nasty by profession.

  92. Flaming June

    12 Jun, 2013 - 9:45 am

    Why Did Edward Snowden Go to Hong Kong?
    Dave Lindorff / 06/11/2013

    It was the timing and the mutual assurance.

  93. Twitter + Guardian comments keep me smiling


    “If we all log into Facebook at the same time and post ‘Allahu Akhbar’ will the (NSA) system crash?”

  94. The exposure of Project PRISM brings into question the security and confidentiality of non-US commercial data that resides on American cloud-computing servers. From these servers, business intelligence can be extracted and then furnished to major US corporations who seek commercial advantages over their foreign competitors. British companies would be ill-advised to use American cloud-computing services without using robust military-grade encryption to enforce privacy.

  95. Europe is not best pleased over this PRISM rupture to information flow.
    A Spiegel selection of various newspapers on the subject. Obama is due to give his own ‘I’m not a Berliner’ speech soon and Merkel will ask him some vexing questions.

    Fat chance that she will ask him to remove all US bases from German soil.

  96. O/T – sort of

    ‘Former drone operator says he’s haunted by his part in more than 1,600 deaths’


    “McClatchy” – ISLAMABAD — In office for less than a week, Pakistan’s new prime minister, Nawaz Sharif, vented his anger Monday at two recent U.S. drone strikes, all but accusing his country’s overbearing military of lying to Pakistanis about its cooperation with the CIA to eliminate terrorism suspects in northwest tribal regions bordering Afghanistan.

    “The policy of protesting against drone strikes for public consumption, while working behind the scenes to make them happen, is not on,” Sharif said, according to an official statement issued after the first meeting of his Cabinet. (continues)

  97. ‘US nuclear bombs ‘based in Netherlands’ – ex-Dutch PM Lubbers’
    Lubbers was Dutch prime minister from 1982 to 1994

    ‘Some 22 US nuclear weapons are stored on Dutch territory, says former Dutch Prime Minister Ruud Lubbers’

    ‘He made the revelation in a documentary for National Geographic – saying: “I would never have thought those silly things would still be there in 2013”.’

  98. Just a thought

    If anyone wants to delete their Facebook account, and can’t find where to do it, there are clear instructions here

  99. Thanks for that Dreolin, Europe seems to be full of nukes and those who in recent days have become known to have designed the systems that control us, might have been able to find out the command sequences to these WMD’s and what is needed to take control their use.

    That would make a ‘Samson option’ scenario possible, if at all.
    But what would it have taken during the cold war, theoretically, to operate a top secret program to take control over some NATO nukes?

    Would it be possible to break top secret codes for their use?, their timers and choice of coordinates are usually triggered by two commands, for security, sic.

    But, theoretically thinking, if a group would have been able to break into these codes and find out how to activate them, it would give them access to any of NATO’s nukes in Europe and it would look authentic when they go off.

    The only plausible Samson option imho.

  100. Even the Israelis are getting a little concerned. No doubt AIPAC is at this moment seeking to “liberalise” (see article for context) US law in line with Israeli norms:

Powered By Wordpress | Designed By Ridgey | Produced by Tim Ireland | Hosted In The Cloud