The NSA - Just Plain Folks
From Brasscheck <>

Isn't it interesting that just as the NSA has become one of the most discussed agencies among Internet users, it is suddenly making feature appearances in the mass media?
Long carefully obscured information is now dropping carelessly from the tree for example:
1. The NSA has a bigger budget and staff than the CIA 2. It does a little bit more than make and break codes
"Since Harry Truman created it in 1952, the supersecret eavesdropping agency (the joke was that the letters stood for "no such agency") has scooped up electronic signals from everything from faxes and phone calls to radar waves and missile launches."
These things used to be secret with a capital "S" and to even talk about them as possibilities was enough to get one branded as a nut or paranoid.
So why the sudden "free flow" information now?
Well, thanks to journalists and publishers *other* than US News and World Review (Covert Action Quarterly comes to mind), these top secrets are no longer secret to millions of people.
Not only that, but the long denied Echelon program may soon be the subject of Congressional hearings.
But as for the JFK assassination, CIA sponsored psychological torture (often referred to as 'mind control'), and government drug running, the outcome of the hearings on Echelon has probably already been plotted out in advance.
The bottom line to all this seems to be plain. They want even more money. To quote from the NSA article:
"NSA's classified capital budget has been chopped 35 percent in the past eight years, one source says. While it has received small increases the past two years, it will have to risk cutting back on intelligence it provides U.S. leaders now."
And they want even less constraints:
"The NSA will have to de-emphasize passive intelligence collection from a distance in favor of more-intrusive methods because of encryption and other advances, officials inside and outside the agency said. That means electronic high jinks of a type usually associated with the CIA: swiping computer passwords, spreading software viruses, infiltrating listening devices into enemy communications systems. Some see as a model for the NSA's future an even more secretive (and unacknowledged) U.S. agency, the Special Collection Service. Staffed jointly by CIA and NSA operatives, its elite teams of eavesdroppers are dispatched on covert missions worldwide."
Much of this article is just plain silly and should be classified as disinformation. The NSA has LONG been involved in intrusive CIA-like covert operations. Indeed, one of the functions of the CIA has been to take the blame for operations actually conducted by the NSA. Also, any operation that has *any* NSA involvement whatsoever is automatically deemed a national security issue and therefore not subject to public scrutiny of any kind. For example, the NSA has the power, which they have used on a regular basis, to take control of US naval vessels and use them for their own aims. The mechanism by which this works was described in vivid detail by "The Pueblo Surrender: A Covert Action by the National Security Agency" by Robert A. Liston New York: Bantam Books, 1988
I wrote about this little discussed aspect of the NSA in context of the bombing of the Chinese embassy in Belgrade during the NATO assault on Yugoslavia last year:
NSA, just plain folks? I don't think so.
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