Intelligence

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Equal Justice for Petraeus and Snowden?

NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden speaking in Moscow on Oct. 9, 2013. (From a video posted by WikiLeaks)

The Justice Department’s decision to let ex-CIA Director Petraeus off with a hand slap for giving his mistress highly sensitive secrets raises questions about the harsh punishments meted out to lower-level leakers/truth-tellers — and the threat of a long prison term for NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden, writes Trevor Timm.

Gen. Petraeus: Too Big to Jail

Gen. David Petraeus in a photo with his biographer/mistress Paula Broadwell. (U.S. government photo)

Exclusive: While lesser Americans face years in jail for leaking secrets – even to inform fellow citizens of government abuses – retired Gen. David Petraeus gets a misdemeanor wrist-slap for exposing covert officers and lying about it, says ex-CIA analyst Ray McGovern, who was jailed just for trying to ask Petraeus a question.

Seeing the Stasi Through NSA Eyes

Former National Security Agency official William Binney (foreground) and other veteran intelligence professionals watching a video feed from NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden. (Photo credit: Silkie Carlo)

In January when former Western intelligence officials, including from the U.S. National Security Agency, toured the old offices of East Germany’s Stasi, it was a look back into a dystopian past but also a chilling reminder of how far modern surveillance has come in the past quarter century, writes Silkie Carlo.

Curbs on Surveillance State Urged

Barack Obama, then President-elect, and President George W. Bush at the White House during the 2008 transition.

In the post 9/11 era, the U.S. government vastly expanded its surveillance of nearly everyone on earth, even U.S. citizens, brushing aside constitutional protections in the name of security. A group of intelligence veterans urges reform of those practices to protect privacy and to stop the waste of resources. 

Congress Cheers Netanyahu’s Hatred of Iran

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu speaking to a joint session of the U.S. Congress on March 3, 2015. (Screen shot from CNN broadcast)

Exclusive: Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu showed off his extraordinary control of the U.S. Congress as he bathed in waves of applause while denouncing President Obama’s proposed deal with Iran and urging America to sign up for the Israeli-Saudi regional war on Iran and its Shiite allies, reports Robert Parry.

Playing Chicken with Nuclear War

A nuclear test detonation carried out in Nevada on April 18, 1953.

Exclusive: U.S.-Russian tensions keep escalating – now surrounding the murder of Russian opposition figure Boris Nemtsov – yet almost no one on the American side seems to worry about the possibility that the tough-guy rhetoric and proxy war in Ukraine might risk a nuclear conflagration, writes Robert Parry.

The Rise of a ‘Democratic’ Fascism

Ousted Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi shortly before he was murdered on Oct. 20, 2011.

Traditional fascism is defined as a right-wing political system run by a dictator who prohibits dissent and relies on repression. But some analysts believe a new form of fascism has arisen that has a democratic façade and is based on relentless propaganda and endless war, as journalist John Pilger describes.

Netanyahu’s Big Gamble

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Aug. 6, 2014, announced the success of Operation Protective Edge, which killed some2,000 Gazans. Netanyahu said, "The goal of Operation Protective Edge was and remains to protect Israeli civilians." (Israeli government photo)

By going over President Obama’s head to Congress, Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu is taking a big gamble, apparently hoping that he can block any U.S. rapprochement with Iran and heighten tensions in the Middle East, a strategy that lacks both facts and logic, says Ted Snider.

Planting False Evidence on Iran

Iranian women attending a speech by Iran's Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei. (Iranian government photo)

Prior to the U.S. intelligence community’s 2007 assessment that Iran was not working on a nuclear weapons program, there was a scramble among U.S. and Israeli officials to show that it was. The CIA’s Operation Merlin also revealed that U.S. officials were not above planting false evidence, writes Norman Solomon.

Failing Tonkin Gulf Test on Ukraine

President Lyndon Johnson announces "retaliatory" strike against North Vietnam in response to the supposed attacks on U.S. warships in the Gulf of Tonkin on Aug. 4, 1964. (Photo credit: LBJ Library)

Exclusive: As the Ukraine crisis worsens, Official Washington fumes only about “Russian aggression” — much as a half century ago, the Tonkin Gulf talk was all about “North Vietnamese aggression.” But then and now there were other sides to the story – and questions that Congress needed to ask, writes Robert Parry.