Aug 26 2007

Democrats Finally Realize Self Preservation Includes Protecting America

The liberal movement, mad from having to exist under two terms of President Bush, succumbed to their madness in two very dangerous ways. First, and borderline traitorous, was the exposure of our NSA surveillance program and how information regarding contacts between terrorists overseas and people here in the US that had once been thrown out was now being used by the FBI in front of FIS Court judges to garner surveillance warrants. Prior to 9-11 the information on who was being contacted in the US and where they were was destroyed before the contents of the message was passed onto the CIA and FBI for investigation. The FBI had to figure out who was being contacted and where they were independently, even though the NSA knew EXACTLY who was on the US end of the contact. Gen Hayden, at the time head of the NSA and now running the CIA, has admitted this information existed for the key leaders of the 9-11 terrorists once they were in the US. We had them, we just could not tell the FBI or CIA who and where they were.

The liberals in the media either twisted this story or were so gullible they were manipulated into reporting twisted facts that it came out in a NY Times headline that Bush was bypassing FISA. The fact is Bush forced FISA to evaluate NSA derived leads on terrorists in this country as legitimate evidence worthy of FBI warrants and investigation.

Since this planted story came out the left has run with it as if they original line is true while it has become clear that the real truth is the FIS Court was a broken system built upon naively quaint and outdated premises which allowed 3,000 people to die on 9-11 because of lame process – instead of upholding the essence of the Constitution and their oaths to protect this nation from enemies, foreign and domestic. To them we must tear down our defenses in order to pay Bush back for being successful in elections. It is a mind numbingly suicidal position – but there it is. But now we have what would be a comical Catch-22, if it was not so damn dangerous. Democrats are realizing, belatedly, that their fortunes are actually linked to the protection of America and that they cannot be pushing for exposing us to attack – when in fact our enemy is gathering at this very moment to carry out that attack! It is bad enough for the left to be demanding we lose Iraq no matter what the cost and no matter how much progress we have made. But to have been the architects of destroying our defenses at a time of growing threat seems to have finally woken the left up out of their madness – at least some.

First we see in this rare and open glimpse into our national security threats what exactly the Intelligence Community (IC) is seeing as the pending storm coming our way:

…before I came back, had been working on a National Intelligence Estimate on terrorist threat to the homeland. And the key elements of the terrorist threat to the homeland, there were four key elements, …

…So leadership that can adapt, safe haven, intermediate leadership, … And the fourth part is recruits.

This interview with National Intelligence Director Mike McConnell outlines the top four milestones al-Qaeda needs to obtain to strike at us. Adaptable leaders, a safe haven to train, good trainers (the intermediate leadership) and the army. In essence we have a picture of a growing threat that has found a safe haven (in the tribal regions that span the southern Afghanistan and Northern Pakistan border regions). They are massing and preparing. But there is more:

they have the recruits and now the objective is to get them into the United States for mass casualties to conduct terrorist operations to achieve mass casualties. All of those four parts have been carried out except the fourth. They have em [recruits], but they haven’t been successful [getting them to America]. One of the major tools for us to keep them out is the FISA program, a significant tool and we’re going the wrong direction.

The “wrong direction” was that produced by a FIS Court judge who disagreed with the newly minted agreements between the FIS Court and the Bush administration. The problem here was this pending wave of attackers and all of a sudden our eyes and ears overseas were being blinded by the same blinder that rests of eyes of lady justice. What happened to the Democrats in Congress? Reality hit them and they realized this was not a matter to play political games over:

The second question was on FISA, so it gave me an opportunity to, here I am worrying about this problem and I have 41 senators and I said several things. The current threat is increasing, I’m worried about it. Our capability is decreasing and let me explain the problem.

My argument was that the intelligence community should not be restricted when we are conducting foreign surveillance against a foreigner in a foreign country, just by dint of the fact that it happened to touch a wire. We haven’t done that in wireless for years.

It takes about 200 man hours to do one telephone number. Think about it from the judges standpoint. Well, is this foreign intelligence? Well how do you know it’s foreign intelligence? Well what does Abdul calling Mohammed mean, and how do I interpret that? So, it’s a very complex process, so now, I’ve got people speaking Urdu and Farsi and, you know, whatever, Arabic, pull them off the line have them go through this process to justify what it is they know and why and so on. And now you’ve got to write it all up and it goes through the signature process, take it through (the Justice Department), and take it down to the FISA court. So all that process is about 200 man hours for one number. We’re going backwards, we couldn’t keep up.

As our enemies massed we bogged ourselves down in useless process, bowing down to the theories contained in the head of one, unelected, unaccountable judge. The Judiciary needs to get out of the mindset they can direct the waging of a war. It is dangerously naive. But that is not where the naiveté ends. The Democrat party is riddled with liberals who just don’t realize that they are calling for America to disarm and invite this massing army to attack us now – while our guard is down:

Democratic rivals criticized Hillary Rodham Clinton on Friday for her comment that a terror attack before the election would help the Republicans.

“It’s a horrible prospect to ask yourself ‘What if? What if?’ But if certain things happen between now and the election, particularly with respect to terrorism, that will automatically give the Republicans an advantage again, no matter how badly they have mishandled it, no matter how much more dangerous they have made the world,” she said. “So I think I’m the best of the Democrats to deal with that as well.”

Clinton, while boasting of talents she has never demonstrated, was being honest – we are at war and the threat is out there. And she knows that the left is trying to disarm us as well as empower the terrorists by surrendering Iraq. She can see her self own self preservation is tied to not being associated with where the blame will go if we are attacked and – as with 9-11 – we had the ability to detect and foil the attack before it happened. The hypocrite meter is being pegged by her rivals – especially John Edwards:

“If we’re talking about America being attacked, the last thing we should do is be engaged in political calculation,” he said. “What I believe is that it is the responsibility of a presidential candidate, a serious presidential candidate, and the president of the United States when you’re talking about something as serious as the potential for America to be attacked, to focus on what’s good for America, not politics, and what needs to be done to keep this country safe, which is what I would do as president.”

Fixing FISA so that leads about terrorists here in the US garnered from surveillance of terrorist command centers overseas (because the two ends came into contact) is one of those things that is best for America which Bush did which the left politicized. You don’t get more hypocritical than that. Going back to McConnell’s enlightening description our threat, let’s focus on the magnitude of the threat here:

Q: How many calls? Thousands?
A: Don’t want to go there. Just think, lots. Too many.

Let’s say 1000 calls. At 200 hours per call (and 1800 work hours in a year) 111 people working. But recall there are only 11 judges. And that is why FISA becomes a barrier. 11 judges must handle 90 of these cases each (not to mention all the other cases). If it is 10,000 calls a year (more likely) that is 900 a year. The system fell apart quite rapidly and we can see why.

What is worse is if the terrorists make it here legally (as the 9-11 terrorists did) then they were, under the old processes, safe to plan and implement their plans. Because prior to 9-11 being here in the country gave them equal status to US citizens who live and work here:

the third point was we must be required to have a warrant for surveillance against a U.S. person. And when I say U.S. person I want to make sure you capture what that means. That does not mean citizen. That means a foreigner, who is here, we still have to have a warrant because he’s here. My view is that that’s the right check and balances and it’s the right protection for the country and lets us still do our mission for protection of the country. And we’re trying to fend off foreign threats.

This has been the crux of the problem from day one. The Democrats envision Bush using this to snoop on his political enemies (they are just not worth the risk given their ineptitude in my humble opinion) why Bush and the rest of America see people here in the US talking to terrorists overseas (which is the focus of this surveillance). The Dems were fantasizing and it was getting noticed. But what is worse is they were not fighting Bush, they were fighting the career specialists who, it so happens, were on Bush’s side on this issue:

I’m an apolitical figure. I’m not a Republican, I’m not a Democrat. I have voted for both. My job is as a professional to try to do this job the best way I can in terms of, from the intelligence community, protect the nation.

The president’s guidance to me early in the process, was, ‘You’ve got the experience. I trust your judgement.

We were at the FBI, it’s an annual thing, we go to the FBI and do a homeland security kind of update. So he came out at noon and said, ‘I’m requesting that Congress pass this bill. It’s essential. Do it before you go on recess. I’m depending on Mike McConnell’s recommendations.

So when we send up our 11 pages, we had a lot of help in making sure we got it just right so it would come back and we’d say wait a minute we can’t live with this or one of the lawyers would say, ‘Wait we tried that, it won’t work, here’s the problem.’ So we kept going back and forth, so we sent up a version like Monday, we sent up a version on Wednesday, we sent up a version on Thursday. The House leadership, or the Democratic leadership on Thursday took that bill and we talked about it. And my response was there are some things I can’t live with in this bill and they said alright we’re going to fix them.

Despite the BS the Democrats feed the gullible media, the fact is they knew we were exposed and in danger as the threat was massing in the tribal regions. And they knew the whole thing had been messed up by a wayward liberal judge. So they fixed FISA and told their mindless liberal base what the base wanted to hear – not what was actually going on. But the 80% of this nation which is not blindly liberal do know what is going on. The Democrats realized their butts were on the line with the rest of us and they had to shore up our broken down defences.

I wish I could say the Dems did this because they wanted to protect America and not just their political fortunes. But since they did not make that point to their base, but lied to them instead, I can only surmize they came to this conclusion because they feared they would get the brunt of the blame if we are attacked while blinded by the NSA opponents on this issue. Besides that, the fact is we came close to permanently blinding ourselves to our enemies’ actions:

So I can’t agree to it until it’s in writing and my 20 lawyers, who have been doing this for two years, can work through it. So in the final analysis, I was put in the position of making a call on something I hadn’t read. So when it came down to crunch time, we got a copy and it had some of the offending language back in it. So I said, ‘I can’t support it.’ And it played out in the House the way it played out in the House.

Meaning those fanatics in the House Leadership blocked the bill for a vote. As we know the final thrashing came in the Senate and the House was forced, bregrudgingly, to remove this nation’s blinders and once again keep a watchful eye on our massing enemies and to keep checking to see if their recriuts have made it to our shores so they can inflict the next 9-11. With 2008 approaching al-Qaeda wants another 9-11 because they believe the nation will go fetal and run away. They have yet to realize another attack will bolster the right and Bush. But then they have consistently missunderstood how we as a nation will react to attack. That is what makes thems so dangerous – they attack when it would be wiser not to. There is a message coming from al-Qaeda for 2008 – and Democrats finally realized they cannot be the ones who enabled that message to be sent to us.

5 responses so far

5 Responses to “Democrats Finally Realize Self Preservation Includes Protecting America”

  1. Terrye says:

    I wonder what the reaction of Democrats like Feingold would be if there was an attack?

  2. MerlinOS2 says:


     Even today the NYT gets it all wrong in a current editorial piece

    After more than a year and a half of administration stonewalling on President Bush’s illegal domestic wiretapping, it was nice to see Mike McConnell, the director of national intelligence, finally unburden himself in a newspaper interview. It would have been nicer if Mr. McConnell had really wanted to enlighten the public.

    BS we all no NSA can listen to who they want and don’t need a warrant and are not subject to them. They are not a law enforcement agency, they are intel people.

    Take, for example, his disclosure that the government has eavesdropped without warrants on thousands of telephone calls in which one party was outside the United States. He said the government got warrants to continue spying on the person in the United States only “100 or less” times.

    More BS , those thousands of calls were foreign to foreign that passed through a US based switch.  The 100 or less are the one party outside category. And like you said its people in the US, not necessarily citizens of the US.

    After Sept. 11, 2001, Mr. Bush ordered the National Security Agency to intercept communications between people in the United States and people abroad without a warrant. That is a violation of the 1978 Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, known as FISA.

    Again more BS NSA is not subject to warrants. 

    Mr. McConnell said there was “untenable” language in the bills and lawmakers refused to fix it. The White House then stampeded Congress into passing a bill it wanted, one that shredded FISA.

    More BS from the NYT, what he was talking about was retroactive liability protections for the telcos for tapping their switches (which is already a capability required under CALEA legislation).

    So NSA is using the tap facilities which they don’t need a warrant for, but if a person of interest comes up, then the FBI gets backup confirmation by other means and goes via Justice to the FISA court for a warrant to use exactly the same tap facility. 

  3. MerlinOS2 says:

    Let me make something clear here.

    Back years ago when FISA was written a phone call end to end was an analog voltage wire from end to end conversation.

    It purely is not that today.  Back then you could tap into the wire the call was switched through and listen to it.

    Today a call is only analog until it gets to the switching center.  There it is converted into digital data and sent out over the network in packets just like a web page or any other internet traffic.  At the other end it is converted back.  That way you don’t have to send any pauses in the conversation , only the packets that have valid speech data.  

    Think about all the pauses in conversation in the telco system combined in an entire day.  It is much more efficient to convert and packet up the data than dedicate a line end to end for the conversation.  Also just think, our inter-switch network is fiber optic.  If you think we have one fiber for each call being processed you are really really wrong.

    So what we have here is the Telco’s are required under CALEA to provide a physical tap capability for warranted use.

    The law enforcement agencies require a warrant, the intel agencies DO NOT require a warrant

    This is where the whole thing fell apart , because the FISA ruling said the foreign to foreign calls hitting that switch to follow were now requiring a warrant to be processed just because it routed through the US which caused a backlog and people being drawn off their primary job to document the warrant. 




  4. MerlinOS2 says:

    A slight correction is in order.

    AT&T was the first to do analog to digital conversion inside the phone and the reverse at the other end.

    They worked the magic of mining the data of voice profiles to hold up how you could put the data down the wire to express the full fidelity and clarity of the speaker in their efforts.

    They examined millions of calls only to develop voice prints to build an algorithm from for which digital transformation they had to do to better serve their customers.

    Was it an invasion of privacy to build up the data base to develop their dlaw voice curve compression technology..

    Probably not , since they only had squigly graphs to massage with the math to work on and not the words that contributed to it to make the graph.

    Back then the idea was to make better sounding calls and since calls were really at that time a wired end to end thing to eliminate echoes by using developing the math and electronics to do echo cancellation from things like microwave links and early satellite comms.

  5. MerlinOS2 says:

    I hate to jump into tech terms but every phone today implements some compatible form of voice compression analog conversion be it dlaw, claw or mulaw curve based voice process weighting, but it is done.

    The only true digital phones were the early models hooked into ISBN networks that had to be converted back if the endpoint was a non ISBN phone.

    Now we have things like Skype , a full digital packet switching server based technology which takes fuller advantage of the pause between words and the mostly one party speak at a time rather than both speaking continuously to maximize info transfer for the duration of the call.

    I realize most don’t know the concept or pieces and bits of call routing for anything that goes beyond their in town switch that hooks you to your friend down the street, but it is a really complex and whole brave new world out there if you understand the guts of how it really works to make the magic.