Wednesday, October 30, 2013

U.S. SPYING - House Committee Hearing

"U.S. intel officials defend surveillance of foreign intentions as 'fundamental'" (Part-1) PBS Newshour 10/29/2013


SUMMARY:  Intelligence officials defended the NSA's spying programs in a House committee hearing, insisting that monitoring the intentions of foreign leaders is "fundamental" and that surveillance helped to protect American citizens.  But some lawmakers underscored concerns that spying on allies has going too far.  Judy Woodruff reports.

"Rep. Sensenbrenner: Mass data collection makes it harder to prevent attacks" (Part-2) PBS Newshour 10/29/2013


SUMMARY:  A bipartisan group of lawmakers are calling for an end to most of the NSA's phone and email surveillance.  Rep. Jim Sensenbrenner, R-Wis., says he believes the president "ought to draw a line" that NSA shouldn't cross.  He joins Judy Woodruff to discuss why he believes there should be reform of the scope of U.S. spying programs.

COMMENTS:  Rep. Sensenbrenner is just showing his ignorance on what it takes to "find out who's involved in a terrorist operation and then use a target by going after that person and that person's phone records and the people that he's conspiring with" as he stated.

You cannot FIND a terrorist without information, and looking at phone numbers calling out of, or into, the U.S. is just one tool.  The other is archiving data about phone calls within the U.S. so once you do identify a supecious overseas call you can identify calls between  potential terrorist cells.  It is impossible to do this after the fact.  You need to be able to have a history of calls you can look back to.

Now is the system perfect, no, but it's better than guessing which would be the result of the NSA NOT having the phone metadata to look back on.  Why, phone metadata is not archived by the phone system, it gets purged after each phone company reads the data for billing purposes. I know, I worked for 9 years for a company that made the equipment that collects metadata on phone systems.

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