CENSORED IN 1980:
BIG BROTHER NSA IS LISTENING TO YOU
Harrison E. Salisbury, respected Pulitzer Prize-winning editor and foreign and domestic correspondent for the New York Times, broke the extraordinary story about the National Security Agency. The NSA is the largest security agency in the U.S., larger than the CIA or the FBI, and it routinely listens in, and records, all our communications.
The NSA monitors all message traffic in the world – cable, wireless, satellite, telephone, coded, uncoded, scrambled, private, business, diplomatic, military. Every telephone call, wireless and cable message to and from the U.S. is automatically recorded.
In 1973 alone, the NSA reportedly retrieved more than 24 million individual communications including private, personal, supposedly inviolable messages from ordinary Americans. The latter are reputedly screened out and fed into a 20-ton-a-day destruct furnace. But no one knows for sure.
Salisbury warns how it affects the ordinary American. “In the simplest terms it means that Uncle Sam is listening — or may listen or is capable of listening – to every electronic impulse we incite, be it a corner pay phone or telex message to our Swiss banker.” He points out that all this is 100 percent against the law and violates every provision of the Bill of Rights.
The lack of media coverage given the magnitude of NSA intrusion on private citizens qualified this story as the #2 best censored story of 1980. It appeared in the November, 1980, issue of Penthouse.
REPORTED IN 2009:
NSA INTERCEPTS OF AMERICANS’ E-MAILS, CALLS, EXCEED LIMITS.
Nearly three decades after Harrison Salisbury initially broke this story, the New York Times reports that the NSA is up to its old tricks with what was euphemistically called, an “over-collection problem.”
“The National Security Agency intercepted e-mails and phone calls of Americans in recent months on a scale that went beyond broad limits set last year by Congress. Several intelligence officials and lawyers said the NSA engaged in ‘over-collection’ of domestic communications. They called the practice significant and systemic, but one official said it was believed to be unintentional,” according to the Times, (4/16/09).
Oddly enough, it sounds similar to the “unintentional” over-collection of private communications revealed by Salisbury back in 1980.
The Times also reported that the problem has come under the scrutiny of the Obama administration and Congress. Congress is particularly interested since an intelligence official said, “NSA tried to wiretap a member of Congress without a warrant.”
Those who cannot remember the past
are condemned to repeat it!
— George Santayana