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This site is the inspiration of a former reporter/photographer for one of New England's largest daily newspapers and for various magazines. The intent is to direct readers to interesting political articles, and we urge you to visit the source sites. Any comments may be noted on site or directed to KarisChaf at gmail.

Friday, January 24, 2014

Snowden Rules Out Return To US Even As Privacy Watchdog Concludes NSA Spying Was/Is Illegal -- By Tyler Durden, Zero Hedge

As if the fact that the Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board found the NSA's bulk telephone collection "has shown minimal value in safeguarding the nation from terrorism," the 238-page report concluded it was illegal in several ways and violates privacy. Coincidentally, on the day of the release of the 9/11 Commission-prompted report, Edward Snowden (in an online chat) stated, "It's not good for our country, it's not good for the world, and I wasn't going to stand by and watch it happen, no matter how much it cost me." Indeed, one wonders if this would have ever come to light; but now following these findings that the program is not authorized by the Patriot Act the panel may give ammunition to critics in Congress and fuel legal challenges presenting a problem for President Obama who said last week (instead of waiting for the report) that he would allow the program to continue.

The report's findings are damning (via Yahoo)...
A report released by the Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board concluded the NSA's huge phone metadata program is illegal in several ways, and provides little or no value to the fight against terrorism.

The 238-page report said the program "has shown minimal value in safeguarding the nation from terrorism."

And the panel said the program is not authorized by the Patriot Act, the law passed following the attacks of September 11, 2001.

It said it violates constitutional guarantees of free speech and protection against unreasonable searches, and also fails to comply with a federal privacy law.

Moreover, it said the program threatens to have "debilitating consequences for journalism" because "sources in a position to offer crucial information about newsworthy topics may remain silent out of fear that their telephone records could be used to trace their contacts."

The report also said the NSA stretches the interpretation of what may be "relevant" to a terrorism investigation.

The board, which was set up to create safeguards for privacy and civil liberties for stepped-up anti-terrorism efforts, rejected the notion the NSA program could have prevented the 9/11 attacks.
....

Edward Snowden praised the report's findings in an online chat today via Free Snowden webste:
"it's time to end "bulk collection" which is a euphemism for mass surveillance. There is no simple justification for continuing an unconstitutional policy with a 0% success rate. In light of another independent confirmation of this fact, i think Americans should look to the White House and Congress to close the book entirely on the 215BR provision."
(Click link below to read more)
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