FRIDAY 6.28.13 – Jack Blood rants on useless and phony “liberalism” IE: Democrat-ism. Anti War Mom and Anti Statist CINDY SHEEHAN joins the show from the road while on her “TOUR DE PEACE” bike ride across O’merica. (www.tourdepeace.org) Cindy and crew are staging a ‘Siege on the oBOMBa White house’ this Monday 7.1.13 at 10 am EST – BE THERE! HOUR TOO: Jack says his goodbyes and gives out KARMA to supporters. ——> THE JACK BLOOD SHOW MAY OR MAY NOT RETURN 7.11.13. STAY TUNED!
Back in 1987 I graduated from a night school course in digital electronics from the DeVry Institute of Technology which had a campus in Lombard, IL at the time. While attending night school in the two years prior I had a chance to talk with a couple of technicians who worked for AT&T at the time. They were continuing their education which was being paid for by their company because technology back at the time was in a state of flux and they needed to keep up with the latest as AT&T was transitioning from old relay style switches to digital circuitry. Seems they’re always transitioning from something to something newer. Read more
“Are they TRYING to start a war?” he asked of the New York Times. “Jesus christ they’re like wikileaks.”
Snowden’s libertarian and dogmatic online persona adds to the emerging portrait of a shape-
shifting young man whose motivations and decision-making remain in flux.
When he burst into public view in the second week of June, Snowden cast himself as a lonely crusader reconciled to capture and prison but determined to use what freedom he had left to expose what he said were omniscient U.S. surveillance powers that threatened individual privacy.
“I have no intention of hiding who I am because I know I have done nothing wrong,” Snowden told Britain’s Guardian newspaper in a report that was published June 9 and revealed that he was in Hong Kong.
Two weeks later, the former NSA contractor is on the lam, presumed to be at a transit zone at a Moscow airport and forced to depend on a government the likes of which he had earlier seemed eager to avoid.
Although Snowden seems to have started out with a carefully considered plan to steal highly classified material and abscond to Hong Kong, he has since undertaken unscripted dodges to keep U.S. investigators at bay.
He has formed an unsurprising but impromptu alliance with WikiLeaks, gambled on Hong Kong’s desire to be rid of him as well as on the Kremlin’s benevolence, and turned for asylum to Ecuador.
The maneuvers have left the 30-year-old open to charges that the idealism he first professed has given way to self-preservation.
Critical parts of Snowden’s biography remain opaque, particularly his entry into the intelligence community without even a high school diploma. He somehow made the jump from security guard at the federally funded University of Maryland Center for Advanced Study of Language, which conducts classified and unclassified research, to CIA recruit in 2007.
The CIA assigned him to Switzerland, and in his commentary on his first taste of life abroad, he complained about bad hamburgers and intermissions in movies.
“God I hate metric,” wrote Snowden on #arsificial, a channel on Ars Technica’s public Internet Relay Chat (IRC) server. “Why can’t they use real numbers over here?”
Editors at Ars Technica said chats on #arsificial are not archived, but they obtained the logs involving Snowden from multiple, independent sources. The Washington Post reported this month that Snowden used the handle TheTrueHOOHA. Elements of TheTrueHOOHA’s biography and personal views correspond with Snowden’s.
Snowden’s postings offer some glimpses into his political opinions. He admired Rep. Ron Paul — calling him “dreamy” — supported Second Amendment rights and considered Social Security a crutch that should be eliminated. He called those who disagreed with him “retards.”
Snowden wondered how the anonymous sources for the New York Times article could have disclosed classified information. “Those people should be shot in the balls,” he wrote.
There was only the faintest hint that Snowden was becoming disillusioned with the U.S. surveillance programs he would later reveal. “WE LOVE THAT TECHNOLOGY [EXPLETIVE],” he wrote in March 2009. “HELPS US SPY ON OUR CITIZENS BETTER.”
Indeed, as he told the Guardian in a videotaped interview this month, his disillusionment with his work as a systems analyst in the U.S intelligence community was gradual. “Over time that awareness of wrongdoing sort of builds up and you feel compelled to talk about,” he said. “And the more you talk about, the more you’re ignored, the more you’re told it’s not a problem, until eventually you realize that these things need to be determined by the public and not by somebody who was simply hired by the government.”
In 2009, Snowden left the CIA to work for a private contractor and was based at an NSA facility in Japan. Three years later, he moved to Hawaii, where he again worked at an NSA facility.
In January, Snowden, without identifying himself, contacted the documentarian Laura Poitras, who has covered surveillance and counterterrorism issues, and told her that he wanted to get her encryption key and use a secure channel to communicate. In February, he also contacted Guardian columnist Glenn Greenwald. Poitras also spoke to reporter Barton Gellman about some of the correspondence she had with Snowden, according to an interview she gave to Salon, the news Web site.
In March, Snowden took a position with the contractor Booz Allen Hamilton, apparently to maximize his access to classified material at the NSA.
“My position with Booz Allen Hamilton granted me access to lists of machines all over the world the NSA hacked,” Snowden told the South China Morning Post in an interview in Hong Kong this month. “That is why I accepted that position about three months ago.”
On May 20, after telling his supervisor that he needed treatment for epilepsy, Snowden flew into Hong Kong carrying four laptops. He met with Guardian journalists there on June 1. The first Guardian article based on NSA documents appeared June 5, followed the next day by articles in The Washington Post and the Guardian on another surveillance program.
Ellen Nakashima JUN 28
Bipartisan group writes letter to director of national intelligence raising concerns about civil liberties.
Peter Finn and and Julie Tate JUN 28
Adnan Latif swallowed two dozen capsules of an anti-psychotic drug and had nine narcotics in his body.
Peter Finn JUN 28
There was no explanation why the total was so much higher than in a typical year.
On an August workday in 2011, a cherubic 18-year-old Icelandic man named Sigurdur “Siggi” Thordarson walked through the stately doors of the U.S. embassy in Reykjavík, his jacket pocket concealing his calling card: a crumpled photocopy of an Australian passport. The passport photo showed a man with a unruly shock of platinum blonde hair and the name Julian Paul Assange.
Thordarson was long time volunteer for WikiLeaks with direct access to Assange and a key position as an organizer in the group. With his cold war-style embassy walk-in, he became something else: the first known FBI informant inside WikiLeaks. For the next three months, Thordarson served two masters, working for the secret-spilling website and simultaneously spilling its secrets to the U.S. government in exchange, he says, for a total of about $5,000. The FBI flew him internationally four times for debriefings, including one trip to Washington D.C., and on the last meeting obtained from Thordarson eight hard drives packed with chat logs, video and other data from WikiLeaks.
The relationship provides a rare window into the U.S. law enforcement investigation into WikiLeaks, the transparency group newly thrust back into international prominence with its assistance to NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden. Thordarson’s double-life illustrates the lengths to which the government was willing to go in its pursuit of Julian Assange, approaching WikiLeaks with the tactics honed during the FBI’s work against organized crime and computer hacking — or, more darkly, the bureau’s Hoover-era infiltration of civil rights groups.
“It’s a sign that the FBI views WikiLeaks as a suspected criminal organization rather than a news organization,” says Stephen Aftergood of the Federation of American Scientists’ Project on Government Secrecy. “WikiLeaks was something new, so I think the FBI had to make a choice at some point as to how to evaluate it: Is this The New York Times, or is this something else? And they clearly decided it was something else.”
The FBI declined comment.
Thordarson was 17 years old and still in high school when he joined WikiLeaks in February 2010. He was one of a large contingent of Icelandic volunteers that flocked to Assange’s cause after WikiLeaks published internal bank documents pertaining to that country’s financial crisis.
When a staff revolt in September 2010 left the organization short-handed, Assange put Thordarson in charge of the WikiLeaks chat room, making Thordarson the first point of contact for new volunteers, journalists, potential sources, and outside groups clamoring to get in with WikiLeaks at the peak of its notoriety.
In that role, Thordarson was a middle man in the negotiations with the Bradley Manning Defense Fund that led to WikiLeaks donating $15,000 to the defense of its prime source. He greeted and handled a new volunteer who had begun downloading and organizing a vast trove of 1970s-era diplomatic cables from the National Archives and Record Administration, for what became WikiLeaks’ “Kissinger cables” collection last April. And he wrangled scores of volunteers and supporters who did everything from redesign WikiLeaks’ websites to shooting video homages to Assange.
He accumulated thousands of pages of chat logs from his time in WikiLeaks, which, he says, are now in the hands of the FBI.
Thordarson’s betrayal of WikiLeaks also was a personal betrayal of its founder, Julian Assange, who, former colleagues say, took Thordarson under his wing, and kept him around in the face of criticism and legal controversy.
“When Julian met him for the first or second time, I was there,” says Birgitta Jonsdottir, a member of Icelandic Parliament who worked with WikiLeaks on Collateral Murder, the Wikileaks release of footage of a US helicopter attack in Iraq. “And I warned Julian from day one, there’s something not right about this guy… I asked not to have him as part of the Collateral Murder team.”
In January 2011, Thordarson was implicated in a bizarre political scandal in which a mysterious “spy computer” laptop was found running unattended in an empty office in the parliament building. “If you did [it], don’t tell me,” Assange told Thordarson, according to unauthenticated chat logs provided by Thordarson.
“I will defend you against all accusations, ring [sic] and wrong, and stick by you, as I have done,” Assange told him in another chat the next month. “But I expect total loyalty in return.”
Instead, Thordarson used his proximity to Assange for his own purposes. The most consequential act came in June 2011, on his third visit to Ellingham Hall — the English mansion where Assange was then under house arrest while fighting extradition to Sweden.
For reasons that remain murky, Thordarson decided to approach members of the Lulzsec hacking gang and solicit them to hack Islandic government systems as a service to WikiLeaks. To establish his bona fides as a WikiLeaks representative, he shot and uploaded a 40-second cell phone video that opens on the IRC screen with the chat in progress, and then floats across the room to capture Asssange at work with an associate. (This exchange was first reported by Parmy Olson in her book on Anonymous).
Unfortunately for Thordarson, the FBI had busted Lulzsec’s leader, Hector Xavier Monsegur, AKA Sabu, a week earlier, and secured his cooperation as an informant. On June 20, the FBI warned the Icelandic government. “A huge team of FBI came to Iceland and asked the Icelandic authorities to help them,” says Jonsdottir. “They thought there was an imminent Lulzsec attack on Iceland.”
The FBI may not have known at this point who Thordarson was beyond his screen names. The bureau and law enforcement agencies in the UK and Australia went on to round up alleged Lulzsec members on unrelated charges.
Having dodged that bullet, it’s not clear what prompted Thordarson to approach the FBI two months later. When I asked him directly last week, he answered, “I guess I cooperated because I didn’t want to participate in having Anonymous and Lulzsec hack for Wikileaks, since then you’re definitely breaking quite a lot of laws.”
That answer doesn’t make a lot of sense, since it was Thordarson, not Assange, who asked Lulzsec to hack Iceland. There’s no evidence of any other WikiLeaks staffer being involved. He offered a second reason that he admits is more truthful: “The second reason was the adventure.”
Thordarson’s equivocation highlights a hurdle in reporting on him: He is prone to lying. Jonsdottir calls him “pathological.” He admits he has lied to me in the past. For this story, Thordarson backed his account by providing emails that appear to be between him and his FBI handlers, flight records for some of his travels, and an FBI receipt indicating that he gave them eight hard drives. The Icelandic Ministry of the Interior has previously confirmed that the FBI flew to Iceland to interview Thordarson. Thordarson also testified to much of this account in a session of the Icelandic Parliament, with Jonsdottir in attendance.
Finally, he has given me a substantial subset of the chat logs he says he passed to the FBI, amounting to about 2,000 pages, which, at the very least, proves that he kept logs and is willing to turn them over to a reporter disliked by Julian Assange.
Thordarson’s “adventure” began on August 23, 2011, when he sent an email to the general delivery box for the U.S. embassy in Reykjavík “Regarding an Ongoing Criminal investigation in the United States.”
“The nature of the intel that can be brought to light in that investigation will not be spoken over email conversation,” he wrote cryptically.
An embassy security officer called him the same day. “He said, ‘What investigation?’ I said the Wikileaks,” says Thordarson. “He denied there was such an investigation, so I just said we both know there is.”
Thordarson was invited to the embassy, where he presented a copy of Assange’s passport, the passport for Assange’s number two, Kristinn Hrafnsson, and a snippet of a private chat between Thordarson and Assange. The embassy official was noncommittal. He told Thordarson they might be in touch, but it would take at least a week.
It happened much faster.
FBI agents and two federal prosecutors landed in a private Gulfstream on the next day, on August 24, and Thordarson was summoned back to the embassy.
He was met by the same embassy official who took his keys and his cell phone, then walked with him on a circuitous route through the streets of downtown Reykjavík, ending up at the Hotel Reykjavik Centrum, Thordarson says. There, Thordarson spent two hours in a hotel conference room talking to two FBI agents. Then they accompanied back to the embassy so he could put money in his parking meter, and back to the hotel for more debriefing.
The agents asked him about his Lulzsec interactions, but were primarily interested in what he could give them on WikiLeaks. One of them asked him if he could wear a recording device on his next visit to London and get Assange to say something incriminating, or talk about Bradley Manning.
“They asked what I use daily, have always on,” he says. “I said, my watch. So they said they could change that out for some recording watch.”
Thordarson says he declined. “I like Assange, even considered him a friend,” he says. “I just didn’t want to go that way.”
In all, Thordarson spent 20 hours with the agents over about five days. Then the Icelandic government ordered the FBI to pack up and go home.
It turns out the FBI had misled the local authorities about its purpose in the country. According to a timeline (.pdf) later released by the National Commissioner of the Icelandic Police, the FBI contacted Icelandic law enforcement to report Thordarson’s embassy walk-in, and ask for permission to fly into the country to follow up. But the bureau had presented the request as an extension of its earlier investigation into Lulzsec, and failed to mention that its real target was WikiLeaks.
WikiLeaks is well regarded in Iceland, and the incident errupted into a hot political topic when it surfaced there this year, with conservatives arguing that Iceland should have cooperated with the FBI, and liberals complaining about the agents being allowed into the country to begin with. “It became a massive controversy,” says Jonsdottir. “And then none of them knew what sort of person Siggi is.”
Politics aside, the FBI was not done with Thordarson.
The agents persuaded Thordarson to fly to Copenhagen with them, he says, for another day of interviews. In October, he made a second trip to Denmark for another debriefing. Between meetings, Thordarson kept in touch with his handlers through disposable email accounts.
In November 2011, Thordarson was fired from WikiLeaks. The organization had discovered he had set up an online WikiLeaks tee shirt store and arranged for the proceeds to go into his own bank account. WikiLeaks has said the embezzlement amounted to about $50,000.
Thordarson told the FBI about it in a terse email on November 8. “No longer with WikiLeaks — so not sure how I can help you more.”
“We’d still like to talk with you in person,” one of his handlers replied. “I can think of a couple of easy ways for you to help.”
“Can you guys help me with cash?” Thordarson shot back.
Image: Courtesy Sigurdur Thordarson
For the next few months, Thordarson begged the FBI for money, while the FBI alternately ignored him and courted him for more assistance. In the end, Thordarson says, the FBI agreed to compensate him for the work he missed while meeting with agents (he says he worked at a bodyguard-training school), totaling about $5,000.
With the money settled, the FBI began preparing him for a trip to the U.S. “I wanted to talk to you about future things we can do,” his handler wrote in February. The FBI wanted him to reestablish contact with some of his former WikiLeaks associates. “We’ll talk about specific goals of the chats, but you can get a head start before our meet by just getting in touch and catching up with them. If you need to know who specifically, we can discuss on the phone.”
The three-day D.C. trip took place in February of last year. Thordarson says he flew on Iceland Air flight 631 to Logan International Airport on February 22, and transferred in Boston to JetBlue flight 686 to Dulles International Aiport, where he was greeted by a U.S. Customs official “and then escorted out the Dulles terminal into the arms of the FBI.”
He stayed at a hotel in Arlington, Virginia, where the Justice Department’s investigation into WikiLeaks is centered, and met there with his two usual FBI contacts, and three or four other men in suits who did not identify themselves.
WAR ON LEAKERS; Ex Four Star General Under Criminal Investigation For Stuxnet LEAK To Media, Another Obama Espionage & Media Scandal!!
“According to legal sources, Retired Marine Gen. James “Hoss” Cartwright, the former vice chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, has received a target letter informing him that he’s under investigation for allegedly leaking information about a massive attack using a computer virus named Stuxnet on Iran’s nuclear facilities. Gen. Cartwright, 63, becomes the latest individual targeted over alleged leaks by the Obama administration, which has already prosecuted or charged eight individuals under the Espionage Act.” – NBC
(AE) – Just add this to the list of Obama scandals, if you can keep up…
This is yet another example of illegal “internet espionage” (ie, cyber attacks, cyber warfare, internet spying) by the US government, that when exposed, causes the government to viciously attack the so called “leaker” with threats of possible criminal charges under the Espionage Act (how ironic), and additionally there’s an attempt to ridicule and threaten the media organization which published the story, in hopes of media silence in the future.
Nixon is rolling in his grave with glee…
2013.6.27 Four Star General Close To Obama Under Investigation For Leaking Info About Cyber Attack On Iran (James Cartwright) (NBC, MOXNEWS, youtube.com):
June 27, 2013 MSNBC News
2013.6.27 Ex Pentagon General Target Of Leak Investigation, Sources Say By Michael Isikoff (investigations.nbcnews.com):
Retired Marine Gen. James “Hoss” Cartwright was the second-highest ranking member of the U.S. military, and a key Obama adviser who served as the vice chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. Legal sources tell NBC News Cartwright has been notified he’s the target of a Justice Department criminal investigation into a leak about a covert U.S. cyber attack on Iran’s nuclear program. NBC’s Michael Isikoff reports.
Legal sources tell NBC News that the former second ranking officer in the U.S. military is now the target of a Justice Department investigation into a politically sensitive leak of classified information about a covert U.S. cyber attack on Iran’s nuclear program.
According to legal sources, Retired Marine Gen. James “Hoss” Cartwright, the former vice chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, has received a target letter informing him that he’s under investigation for allegedly leaking information about a massive attack using a computer virus named Stuxnet on Iran’s nuclear facilities. Gen. Cartwright, 63, becomes the latest individual targeted over alleged leaks by the Obama administration, which has already prosecuted or charged eight individuals under the Espionage Act.
Last year, the New York Times reported that Cartwright, a four-star general who was vice chairman of the Joint Chiefs from 2007 to 2011, conceived and ran the cyber operation, called Olympic Games, under Presidents Bush and Obama. According to the front-page story by chief Washington correspondent David Sanger, President Obama ordered the cyber attacks sped up, and in 2010 an attack using the Stuxnet worm temporarily disabled 1,000 centrifuges that the Iranians were using to enrich uranium.
The Times story included details of the Olympic Games operation, including the cooperation of Israeli intelligence and the way the virus was introduced to an Iranian nuclear facility. It described meetings in the White House Situation Room and was based on interviews with “current and former American, European and Israeli officials involved in the program.”
As soon as the Times report appeared, Congressional leaders demanded a criminal probe, and president Obama said he had “zero tolerance” for “these kinds of leaks.” Republicans charged that senior administration officials had leaked the details to bolster the president’s national security credentials during the 2012 campaign.
But, said legal sources, while the probe that Attorney General Eric Holder ordered initially focused on whether the information came from inside the White House, by late last year FBI agents were zeroing in on Cartwright, who had served as one of the president’s “inner circle” of national security advisors. Two sources said prosecutors were able to identify Cartwright as a suspected leaker without resorting to a secret subpoena of the phone records of New York Times reporters.
One source familiar with the probe said the Justice Department has not made a final decision on whether to charge Cartwright.
Cartwright, who retired from the military in August 2011, did not respond to repeated requests for comment. His attorney, former Obama White House counsel Greg Craig, said Thursday, “I have no comment.”
But at Craig’s urging, others called NBC News to defend Cartwright’s reputation, while acknowledging they had no direct knowledge of the investigation. “He’s a great American,” said former Rep. Ellen Tauscher, D.-Calif., who served as undersecretary of state for arms control in the Obama administration. “All I know is he’s always been one who acted in a way to defend the country and do so in a way that is beyond reproach.”
The White House declined to comment, as did Justice Department officials.
A member of the administration’s Defense Policy Board, however, described the Stuxnet leak as “very damaging.”
“Clearly what was going on here was a method and it should have been protected,” said former California congresswoman Jane Harman. “I think it’s had devastating consequences.”
A Massachusetts federal grand jury returned a 30-count indictment against Boston bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev on Thursday, charging the 19-year-old Cambridge man in the deaths of three bombing victims and the separate slaying of a Boston-area campus police officer.
The officer was fatally shot three days after the April 15 assault on the Boston Marathon.
Tsarnaev, also facing charges of using a weapon of mass destruction and the use of a firearm resulting in death among other criminal counts, faces a possible death sentence on 17 of the charges if convicted.
Officials declined to comment on whether a decision has been reached to seek the death penalty, but Attorney General Eric Holder said the indictment “proves our unyielding resolve to hold accountable, to the fullest extent of the law, anyone who would threaten the American people or attempt to terrorize our great cities.”
“The (government) is firmly committed to achieving justice on behalf of all who were affected by these senseless acts of violence,” Holder said.
Tsarnaev’s lawyers did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – An Internal Revenue Service official on Wednesday invoked his right not to answer questions at a congressional hearing, a day after a Republican report accused the official of inappropriately awarding federal contracts worth millions of dollars.
At a U.S. House of Representatives Oversight and Government Reform Committee hearing, Gregory Roseman, an IRS official involved in awarding IRS contracts, repeated four times that he would not answer questions. He was then excused from the hearing.
“I respectfully decline to answer any questions and invoke my Fifth Amendment privilege to remain silent,” Roseman said, referring the Constitution’s protection against self-incrimination.
Committee Chairman Darrell Issa, a California Republican, released the report on Tuesday that detailed personal ties between Roseman and the president of a Virginia-based government contracting business Strong Castle Inc.
The report also said the company made false statements to beat rivals for the work. Strong Castle, formerly known as Signet Computers, has denied any wrongdoing.
Roseman has been reassigned within the IRS because of his role in awarding the contracts.
Judge Fired After Ignoring Woman Who Was Being Arrested Because She Complained the Bailiff Molested Her in the Courtroom
The family court hearing master that allowed two court marshals to abuse, degrade and sexually assault a woman that was in court for a divorce matter was quietly fired last week.
Patricia Doninger is no longer employed by Clark County Courts after an alleged investigation into the August 11 incident in her court, during which she turned her back on a disgusting situation to play with the victim’s underage daughter. Doninger heartlessly ignored the young mother’s plea for help while two Clark County Court Marshalls tortured, groped and viciously attacked the Hispanic woman that was in court for a routine divorce case.
A court video of the incident was obtained by Las Vegas Tribune, and after reviewing it for several days, the newspaper was ready to begin a campaign to demand Hearing Master Patricia Doninger’s termination – but that is no longer necessary.
Doninger was clearly seen on the video playing with the woman’s daughter and ignoring the woman’s cries that the marshal was assaulting her right under her nose, under the guise of searching for drugs.
The Ohio House yesterday approved a bill to ban red-light and speed cameras over the objections of Columbus-area representatives and others who argued that the technology has reduced traffic accidents and saved lives.
“Motorists learn where these cameras are … and guess what? Driving habits change. They change for the better,” said Rep. Michael F. Curtin, D-Marble Cliff.
House Bill 69, approved 61-32 and sent to the Senate, would require Columbus and other municipalities to remove all law-enforcement cameras except mobile units in school zones during restricted hours, which would be permissible if a police officer is present.