While President Obama continues to tell the public that there is no widespread domestic surveillance program and denies the violation of privacy rights, another report again contradicts those statements. According to the Washington Post, the National Security Agency broke privacy rules thousands of times every year under the warrantless surveillance program. Moreover, it is important to keep in mind that civil libertarians view the programs themselves to be violations of Constitution, but the Administration violated even those rules. Moreover, this information did not come from Congress or the White House. It came from Edward Snowden. You remember him. He is the guy Obama said is no patriot and could have taken a different course to address his concerns. The information reviewed by the Post is more than would have been shared with Congress under current rules.
Some of the “inadvertent” spying is astonishing. For example, the NSA according to this article wanted to listen to calls going to Egypt at area code “20” but made a mistake. That mistake happened to capture a “large number” of calls from “202” — Washington D.C.
The violations also included the unauthorized use of information on more than 3,000 Americans and green-card holders.
Obama insisted that “a court” reviews these programs, though he is referring to the widely ridiculed FISA court which lacks the authority to seriously monitor the program or reject all but a couple applications in its history.
A NSA official is quoted as saying that they are trying to do better and the public needs to trust the agency: “We’re a human-run agency operating in a complex environment with a number of different regulatory regimes, so at times we find ourselves on the wrong side of the line.” Sure, but what if these entire warrantless programs are on “the wrong side of the line”?
Source: Washington Post