The Watch

The Watch is concerned about the increasing pressure towards feudalism in the United States from corporations, social regressives, warmongers, and the media. We also are concerned with future history concerning our current times, as non-truths which are “widely reported” become the basis for completely false narratives.

Thursday, January 05, 2006

Wiretapping their enemies

So, we know that the court which was handing out warrents for federal wiretaps was very nearly a hollow rubberstamp, that they were essentially an empty shell that approved nearly every request that came their way from the executive. If the request could be in any way tied to a justification that had to do in some way with counter-terrorism, it was full steam ahead.

Yet, the Cheney/Rove administration deliberately chose to ignore judicial oversight and wiretap whoever they wanted anyway. The ONLY conclusion that can be drawn from this (besides wanting to flip "checks and balances" the bird) is that their wiretaps were on people who could not be tied to counter-terrorism.

What kind of wiretaps would a court likely not approve? Well, we can speculate quite broadly about that. I imagine that a court, even a highly partisan court, would not approve of the Bushies wiretapping political opponents. That would clearly be done only for partisan purposes, not for "security". Also, most wiretapping of media figures would also probably be denied, as this constitutes a threat to the mostly fictional free press.

Therefore, we must conclude that Cheney and Rove were wiretapping their political opponents and memebers of the media. Why else would they bother to break the law when legitimate wiretapping is so easy and legal? I challenge this administration to prove otherwise.

The NY Times, that bastion of liberalism (ha ha), knew this was going on and sat on it for a year. Thanks for holding their feet to the fire, NY Times! They apparently did this so that one of their reporters, James Risen, could write a book about domestic spying. Risen is now on his book tour promoting his product, and we'll see if this book was worth the US not knowing that Bushco was using warrentless wiretaps on us for over four years.

In an interview with Risen on Tuesday, Andrea Mitchell implied that veteran reporter Christiane Amanpour, had been wiretapped:

Mitchell: Do you have any information about reporters being swept up in this net?

Risen: No, I don't. It's not clear to me. That's one of the questions we'll have to look into the future. Were there abuses of this program or not? I don't know the answer to that

Mitchell: You don't have any information, for instance, that a very prominent journalist, Christiane Amanpour, might have been eavesdropped upon?

Risen: No, no I hadn't heard that.


It's not clear where Mrs. Greenspan was going with this question. She's been such a good little foot soldier for this administration. Then again, she did seem pretty humiliated when she got caught out repeating the adminstration's lies that Valerie Wilson was widely known "around town" to be a CIA agent. (She eventually suggested that maybe she was a little drunk when she said that.)

This question regarding Amanpour has been scrubbed from the MSNBC transcript of the interview (huh, wonder why?), but they claim it is because they want to do "more research" in this area. We'll see if it ever escapes the memory hole again.

Why is it important whether or not Bush was illegally wiretapping Amanpour? John at AmericaBlog connects the dots for us:

1. Such a wiretap would likely include her home, office, and cell phones, and email correspondence, at the very least.

2. That means anyone Christiane has conversed with in the past four years, at least by phone or email, could have had their conversation taped by the US government.

3. That also means that anyone who uses any of Christiane's telephones or computers (work or home) could also have had their conversation bugged.

4. This includes Christiane's husband, former Clinton administration senior official Jamie Rubin, who was spokesman for the State Department.

5. Jamie Rubin was also chief foreign policy adviser to General Wesley Clark's presidential campaign, and then worked as a senior national security adviser to John Kerry's presidential campaign.

6. Did Jamie Rubin ever use his home phone, his wife's work phone, his wife's cell phone, her home computer or her work computer to communicate with John Kerry or Wesley Clark? If so, those conversations would have been bugged if Bush was tapping Amanpour.

7. Did Jamie Rubin ever in the past four years communicate with any elected officials in Washington, DC - any Senators or members of the US House? Any senior members of the Democratic party?

8. Has Rubin spoken with Bill Clinton, his former boss, in the past 4 years?


And there you have it, political opponents and media figures all with one illegal wiretap. Why couldn't Bush go to the FISA court to get a warrant? It may be because he was listening in to Kerry's political advisors during the campaign.

1 Comments:

Blogger John Locke said...

I must admit that the same thought occurred to me. I initially dismissed the idea of being worthy of the "tinfoil hat" people. But since we know that the court is essentially a rubberstamp for Bush's activities, the only reasonable conclusion that I can think of for Bush to end-round the rubberstampcourt is that the people they wished to spy upon had no links to terrorism.

The reality is that Bush is so caught up in his self-delusions and his Holy Crusade, that perhaps he morally justified spying on Americans (such as Kerry advisors) because he felt it so important to win the election so that he could continue to "guide" (rule) the country that all other moral obligations were moot.

-John Locke

1/05/2006 4:31 PM  

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