WHY TRUMP IS RIGHT ABOUT GEORGE W. BUSH

President Trump was right to call out George W. Bush, who was silent about national unity during the criminally depraved impeachment trial. But now, suddenly, Bush is all for unity during the pandemic?

George W. Bush of all people should have been outraged by the assault Nancy Pelosi, Adam Schiff, Chuck Schumer, and Jerry Nadler made on the Presidency.  With all due respect, I believe he should have been a bigger man at that time. Whatever petty baggage he carries from his perception of Trump’s treatment of his brother Jeb, is nothing compared to the horror and permanent damage this false impeachment did to the Executive Branch of the United States government.

Let’s turn to the Bible for insight on why Bush is wrong. In 2 Samuel 1:14, King David was confronted by a man who claimed to have killed King Saul, David’s mortal enemy. “So David said to him, “How was it you were not afraid to put forth your hand to destroy the Lord’s anointed?” Though Saul had tried on numerous occasions to kill David, David still mourned Saul’s death and even executed the man who had not been afraid to take the crown off Saul’s head, and bringing it, with the armlet from Saul’s arm. Why?

Because David believed that no matter what, Saul was God’s anointed. David respected the office. George Bush—of all people—should have respected the office. The time for him to speak out for unity and to warn that something could destroy us was during the fraud impeachment of Trump, not now.

Bush should have protested the disgraceful attack on the office of President by the Democrats. Bush should have warned the nation then about how we are all in this together. He should have protected the Executive branch of government from tyranny.

Mr. Bush knows, as few men know, the corruption of the Democrat Party. He also knows the long term damage these leftists have set in motion for future Presidents. Impeachment has been weaponized. It will be used to destroy any President that the House of Representatives does not approve of. It will be used even when there is no evidence of wrong doing. That was the new ground that Pelosi and her cohorts broke.

Let’s say—God forbid—that Biden wins. The Republican retaliation will be swift and withering.

Let’s say Donald Trump wins. Adam Schiff has already begun new impeachment hearings, and he can do so because the precedent has been set by their previous attempt at impeachment. And because there were no consequences for Schiff, he feels empowered. Has none of this occurred to George W?

Worst of all, no matter who wins, our devastated economy won’t get strong leadership.  A bitterly divided government will be distracted by more and more investigations and trials.

The American public has just seen two other examples of Democrat debauchery. We recently learned that General Michael Flynn was the target of high level FBI agents who were blindly loyal to Barack Obama. Knowing Flynn was innocent, still they set a trap by lying, and tricked the General into incriminating himself falsely.

We also see how Tara Reade is being trashed by the hypocritical #MeToo movement, because electing Joe Biden justifies depriving abused women of justice. Brett Kavanaugh was guilty until proven innocent. But Joe is innocent until they can change the subject.

Bush’s first loyalty should have been to our system of government. He should have been thinking about the Founding Fathers more than his hurt feelings. If a former President can’t reverence the office, who can?

And how can he say we are in this together when he knows that a rogue government led by Barack Obama and others is feverishly working to destroy the very foundation of our freedom?

Again, what Nancy Pelosi, Adam Schiff, Chuck Schumer, and Jerry Nadler did was evil—an evil that will continue to damage America for many years to come. Such a vicious and baseless ad hominem attack on a sitting President, such blatant lèse majesté of that kind, should have roused George W. Bush to speak out.

If he truly cares about saving America, he would not, in my opinion, call for a fake unity built on sweeping evil under the rug, just because he doesn’t like the victim.

George H.W. Bush to vote for Hillary Clinton

George H.W. Bush to vote for Hillary Clinton

A Kennedy outs a Bush who favors a Clinton.
By DARREN SAMUELSOHN 09/19/16 11:20 PM EDT Updated 09/19/16 11:36 PM EDT

Former President George H.W. Bush is bucking his party’s presidential nominee and plans to vote for Hillary Clinton in November, according to a member of another famous political family, the Kennedys.
Bush, 92, had intended to stay silent on the White House race between Clinton and Donald Trump, a sign in and of itself of his distaste for the GOP nominee. But his preference for the wife of his own successor, President Bill Clinton, nonetheless became known to a wider audience thanks to Kathleen Hartington Kennedy Townsend, the former Maryland lieutenant governor and daughter of the late Robert F. Kennedy.

On Monday, Townsend posted a picture on her Facebook page shaking hands next to the former president and this caption: “The President told me he’s voting for Hillary!!”
In a telephone interview, Townsend said she met with the former president in Maine earlier today, where she said he made his preference known that he was voting for a Democrat. “That’s what he said,” she told POLITICO.

Asked about Townsend’s post, George H.W. Bush spokesman Jim McGrath in an email replied, “The vote President Bush will cast as a private citizen in some 50 days will be just that: a private vote cast in some 50 days. He is not commenting on the presidential race in the interim.”

George H.W. Bush and former First Lady Barbara Bush have stayed out of the political debate since campaigning earlier this year for their son Jeb’s unsuccessful bid for president. Neither George H.W. Bush nor his son, former President George W. Bush, attended this summer’s Republican National Convention in Cleveland where Trump accepted the nomination.

jeb

George W. Bush Bashes Obama on Middle East

In a closed-door meeting with Jewish donors on Saturday night, former President George W. Bush delivered his harshest public criticisms to date against his successor on foreign policy, saying that President Barack Obama is being naïve about Iran and the pending nuclear deal and losing the war against the Islamic State.

One attendee at the Republican Jewish Coalition session, held at the Venetian Hotel in Las Vegas with owner Sheldon Adelson in attendance, transcribed large portions of Bush’s remarks. The former president, who rarely ever criticizes Obama in public, at first remarked that the idea of re-entering the political arena was something he didn’t want to do. He then proceeded to explain why Obama, in his view, was placing the U.S. in “retreat” around the world. He also said Obama was misreading Iran’s intentions while relaxing sanctions on Tehran too easily.

According to the attendee’s transcription, Bush noted that Iran has a new president, Hassan Rouhani. “He’s smooth,” Bush said. “And you’ve got to ask yourself, is there a new policy or did they just change the spokesman?”

Bush said that Obama’s plan to lift sanctions on Iran with a promise that they could snap back in place at any time was not plausible. He also said the deal would be bad for American national security in the long term: “You think the Middle East is chaotic now? Imagine what it looks like for our grandchildren. That’s how Americans should view the deal.”

Bush then went into a detailed criticism of Obama’s policies in fighting the Islamic State and dealing with the chaos in Iraq. On Obama’s decision to withdraw all U.S. troops in Iraq at the end of 2011, he quoted Senator Lindsey Graham calling it a “strategic blunder.” Bush signed an agreement with the Iraqi government to withdraw those troops, but the idea had been to negotiate a new status of forces agreement to keep U.S. forces there past 2011. The Obama administration tried and failed to negotiate such an agreement.

Bush said he views the rise of the Islamic State as al-Qaeda’s “second act” and that they may have changed the name but that murdering innocents is still the favored tactic. He defended his own administration’s handling of terrorism, noting that the terrorist Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, who confessed to killing Wall Street Journal reporter Daniel Pearl, was captured on his watch: “Just remember the guy who slit Danny Pearl’s throat is in Gitmo, and now they’re doing it on TV.”

Obama promised to degrade and destroy Islamic State’s forces but then didn’t develop a strategy to complete the mission, Bush said. He said that if you have a military goal and you mean it, “you call in your military and say ‘What’s your plan?’ ” He indirectly touted his own decision to surge troops to Iraq in 2007, by saying, “When the plan wasn’t working in Iraq, we changed.”

“In order to be an effective president … when you say something you have to mean it,” he said. “You gotta kill em.”

Bush told several anecdotes about his old friend and rival Russian President Vladimir Putin. Bush recalled that Putin met his dog Barney at the White House and then later, when Bush went to Moscow, Putin showed him his dog and remarked that he was “bigger stronger and faster than Barney.” For Bush, that behavior showed him that Putin didn’t think in “win-win” terms.

Bush also remarked that Putin was rich, divorced his wife and loves power. Putin’s domestic popularity comes from his control of Russian media, according to Bush. “Hell, I’d be popular, too, if I owned NBC news,” he said.

Regarding his brother Jeb’s potential run for the presidency, Bush acknowledged that he was a political liability for Jeb, that the Bush name can be used against him, and that Americans don’t like dynasties. He also said that foreign policy is going to be especially important in the presidential campaign and that the test for Republicans running will be who has got the “courage” to resist isolationist tendencies.

Regarding Hillary Clinton, Bush said it will be crucial how she plays her relationship with the president. She will eventually have to choose between running on the Obama administration’s policies or running against them. If she defends them, she’s admitting failure, he said, but if she doesn’t she’s blaming the president.

For George W. Bush, the remarks in Vegas showed he has little respect for how the current president is running the world. He also revealed that he takes little responsibility for the policies that he put in place that contributed to the current state of affairs.

Franklin Graham: Both Obama And Bush ‘Have Done A Great Disservice,’ Calling Islam Peaceful

franklin_graham copy

Franklin Graham: Both Obama And Bush ‘Have Done A Great Disservice,’ Calling Islam Peaceful

“Mr. President—followers of a peaceful religion do not cut off the heads of innocent people.”

In a commentary for Decision magazine, evangelist Franklin Graham calls out both President Obama and President Bush for defending Islam as a religion of peace.

Graham is reacting specifically to Obama’s speech before the U.N. in September in which the president said, “Islam teaches peace,” and also to George W. Bush, who, days after 9/11, said, “Islam is peace.”

Graham writes:

Both men have done a great disservice to the American public by not understanding Islam and its teaching in the Quran.

The day after Obama addressed the U.N. in September, Graham recalls that he stood across from the White House in Lafayette Square with the hope that the president would hear his message in praying for the release of imprisoned Iranian-American Christian Saeed Abedini:

Mr. President—followers of a peaceful religion do not cut off the heads of innocent people in the barbaric fashion the world has watched recently.

Mr. President—believers in a peaceful religion do not kidnap 300 young schoolgirls as Boko Haram did in northeastern Nigeria in April and reportedly [sell] them to men to be sex slaves.

Mr. President—men who practice a peaceful religion do not detonate bombs on an American street during a marathon race to kill and maim innocent people.

Mr. President—no one who belongs to a peaceful religion would even consider hijacking jet airliners and flying them into buildings occupied by thousands of innocent people beginning their workday, as happened in this country and in this city on 9/11.

Mr. President—no peaceful religion would tolerate, let alone practice, female circumcision, require a woman to have her husband’s permission to leave her home and take up employment, and restrict her ability to receive justice in the case of sex crimes.

Mr. President—a peaceful religion would not condone and allow a father to drown a daughter in a swimming pool in front of the family in the name of family honor because she might have stayed out late in the evening with her boyfriend.

Mr. President—why haven’t the 3.5 million Muslims in North America rejected this gross, barbaric and despicable behavior by their fellow Muslims on American soil?

And that is Graham’s question left unanswered. He adds: “Why haven’t many, if not most, of the 1.6 billion Muslims around the world condemned these violent crimes against innocent humanity as they have occurred? Why would 23 percent of the world’s population stand by and allow their fellow Muslims to define them by violent behavior if this is truly a religion of peace?”

Christians, Graham affirms, “quickly and unanimously rise together to condemn” violent acts in the name of Christianity. “I cannot recall a single instance of violent behavior supposedly done in the name of Christianity that was not immediately repudiated by the Christian community,” he writes.

Graham calls Islam a “false religion…guided and characterized by treacherous deceit.” Furthermore, he concludes that a false religion can never be a true religion of peace. Only true religion that reconciles “a holy God and sinful man” can “bring lasting peace.”

He is not implying every false religion engages in “barbaric behavior,” but none of them, he says, “can deliver from the damning power of sin:”

Christ alone, the Son of God, saves from sin, Satan and death. He died on the cross for our sins, was buried and rose again from the dead.

My earnest prayer is that the Lord will use the chaotic and frightening events we see happening on the world stage to drive people, including followers of Islam, to the only solution—personal, transforming faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, the Prince of Peace.

KERRY COMPARES SYRIAN INTERVENTION TO NORMANDY INVASION

KERRY COMPARES SYRIAN INTERVENTION TO NORMANDY INVASION

 44
 0
by TONY LEE 4 Sep 2013 142POST A COMMENT

On Wednesday, Secretary of State John Kerry compared possible military intervention in Syria to the invasion of Normandy during World War II.

Testifying before the House Foreign Affairs Committee, Kerry said that “there are a lot of folks out there who are committed to violent acts against lots of different people. We have to defend ourselves.”

After emphasizing that intervening in Syria is a “direct interest in our credibility,” Kerry said, “You ask the question, ‘Why does the United States have to be out there?'”

“You ever been to the cemetery in France? Ya know, above those beaches? Why’d those guys have to go do that?” Kerry said.

In response to Rep. Ted Yoho (R-FL), Kerry said those who died in Normandy did so while “standing up with people for a set of values and fighting for freedom.” He said “no country has liberated as much land or fought as many battles as the United States of America and turned around and given it back to the people who live there and can own it, run it.”

Kerry said America was, in that sense, the “indispensable” nation and that a lot of moderate people in the Middle East “count on us.”

Throughout the testimony, though, Kerry emphasized that he did not believe intervention in Syria would be considered “war” in his definition and continued to emphasize that he did not believe American ground troops would be needed in Syria.

Obama’s Crisis of Competence

Obama’s Crisis of Competence

The White House seems more comfortable stage-managing the news than dealing with the uncomfortable crises that inevitably crop up.

By 

Updated: July 3, 2013 | 8:28 a.m.
July 3, 2013 | 7:01 a.m.

President Obama and former President George W. Bush pause for a moment of silence during a wreath-laying ceremony to honor the victims of the U.S. Embassy bombing in Dar Es Salaam, Tanzania. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

President Obama returned last night from a weeklong trip to Africa, seeking to position himself as part of ailing Nelson Mandela’s legacy and generating strategic photo-ops. On the other side of the continent, Egypt is awash in revolution, with hundreds of thousands of protesters in Tahrir Square railing against the American-backed president, with some chanting slogans against the American passivity in the face of crisisThe Washington Post editorialized Tuesday: “For months, as the Morsi government has taken steps to consolidate power, quash critics and marginalize independent civil society groups, President Obama and his top aides have been largely silent in public. No effort was made to use the leverage of U.S. aid to compel a change of policy.”

While the president was in Africa, Secretary of State John Kerry spent time in Israel, using valuable political capital trying to jump-start peace talks between the Israelis and the Palestinians, at a time when few serious foreign policy analysts believe it has any chance of succes—beyond garnering favorable press for trying. (The Atlantic‘s Jeffrey Goldberg calls Kerry’s a “delusion of the foreignpolicy elite” in his column today.) This, while the administration appears utterly feckless in neighboring Syria, where civil war worsens, chemical weapons-wielding dictator Bashar al-Assad strengthens his hold on power, and American influence dwindles. “The military situation in Syria is slipping away as the president ponders,” Washington Post columnist Jackson Diehl wrote last week.

And on the domestic front, Obama was comfortably traveling on Air Force One when a Treasury Department functionary announced late Tuesday it would be delaying the mandate that businesses provide health care for their employee—a crucial component in the health care law that is shaping up as the president’s main legacy. Rather than give a speech explaining the delay, and informing the public about how this could affect their health care options, the administration dropped the bombshell news right before the July Fourth holiday weekend.

The administration is facing a crisis of competence. At a time when trust in government is already at an all-time low, the events of this past week illustrate the limits of this president’s power. The White House seems more comfortable stage-managing the news than dealing with the uncomfortable crises that inevitably crop up. (If there’s anything to learn from the Benghazi crisis, it was the administration’s attentiveness to detail in how to avoid blame in the aftermath of the crisis but a lack of focus in how to react as the crisis was occurring.)

The other worrying sign, is that politics is getting in the way of smart policymaking. Wary of the last war in the Middle East, Americans don’t want the United States to intervene in Syria. The White House, heeding the polls, gladly obliged, even figuring out ways to forestall proof that the Syrian government used chemical weapons against its people—the red line that the president famously set. Obama doesn’t want to say anything to take sides between the Egyptian president he backed and the growing throngs of protesters, and then take ownership in a crisis that’s showing no signs of abating. Politically speaking, it’s a lose-lose situation.

On health care, with the 2014 midterms approaching and control of the Senate in play, the administration decided to buy time by delaying the employer mandate until after the elections. Former HHS spokesman Nick Papas said the delay was “about minimizing paperwork, not politics.” But it’s awfully politically convenient to delay implementation of a law that’s been growing more unpopular and whose implementation is shaping up to be a “train wreck,” in the words of Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus, a Democrat.

Obama’s second-term legacy is shaping up to be more about avoiding crises than accomplishing big things. Salvage the core of a health care law, avoid worst-case scenarios in Egypt and Syria, and don’t get in the way of his party’s efforts to win Republican support for a landmark immigration reform plan. It’s a far cry from the idealism of his second inaugural. But at this point, the president needs to simply show that he’s paying attention to the fires burning around him.

NSA spying flap extends to contents of U.S. phone calls.

NSA spying flap extends to contents of U.S. phone calls

National Security Agency discloses in secret Capitol Hill briefing that thousands of analysts can listen to domestic phone calls. That authorization appears to extend to e-mail and text messages too.

Declan McCullagh
by Declan McCullagh

June 15, 2013 4:39 PM PDT

NSA Director Keith Alexander says his agency's analysts, which until recently included Edward Snowden among their ranks, take protecting "civil liberties and privacy and the security of this nation to their heart every day."NSA Director Keith Alexander says his agency’s analysts, which until recently included Edward Snowden among their ranks, take protecting “civil liberties and privacy and the security of this nation to their heart every day.”(Credit: Getty Images)

The National Security Agency has acknowledged in a new classified briefing that it does not need court authorization to listen to domestic phone calls, a participant said.

Rep. Jerrold Nadler, a New York Democrat, disclosed on Thursday that during a secret briefing to members of Congress, he was told that the contents of a phone call could be accessed “simply based on an analyst deciding that.”

If the NSA wants “to listen to the phone,” an analyst’s decision is sufficient, without any other legal authorization required, Nadler said he learned. “I was rather startled,” said Nadler, an attorney and congressman who serves on the House Judiciary committee.

Not only does this disclosure shed more light on how the NSA’s formidable eavesdropping apparatus works domestically, it also suggests the Justice Department has secretly interpreted federal surveillance law to permit thousands of low-ranking analysts to eavesdrop on phone calls.

James Owens, a spokesman for Nadler, provided a statement on Sunday morning, a day after this article was published, saying: “I am pleased that the administration has reiterated that, as I have always believed, the NSA cannot listen to the content of Americans’ phone calls without a specific warrant.” Owens said he couldn’t comment on what assurances from the Obama administration Nadler was referring to, and said Nadler was unavailable for an interview. (CNET had contacted Nadler for comment on Friday.)

Because the same legal standards that apply to phone calls also apply to e-mail messages, text messages, and instant messages, being able to listen to phone calls would mean the NSA analysts could also access the contents of Internet communications without going before a court and seeking approval.

Nadler’s initial statement appears to confirm some of the allegations made by Edward Snowden, a former NSA infrastructure analyst who leaked classified documents to the Guardian. Snowden said in a video interview that, while not all NSA analysts had this ability, he could from Hawaii “wiretap anyone from you or your accountant to a federal judge to even the president.”

There are serious “constitutional problems” with this approach, said Kurt Opsahl, a senior staff attorney at the Electronic Frontier Foundation who has litigated warrantless wiretapping cases. “It epitomizes the problem of secret laws.”

The NSA declined to comment to CNET. (This is unrelated to the disclosure that the NSA is currently collecting records of the metadata of all domestic Verizon calls, but not the actual contents of the conversations.)

Rep. Mike Rogers (R-Mich.), the head of the House Intelligence committee, told CNN on Sunday that the NSA “is not listening to Americans’ phone calls” or monitoring their e-mails, and any statements to the contrary are “misinformation.” It would be “illegal” for the NSA to do that, Rogers said.

The Washington Post disclosed Saturday that the existence of a top-secret NSA program called NUCLEON, which “intercepts telephone calls and routes the spoken words” to a database. Top intelligence officials in the Obama administration, the Post said, “have resolutely refused to offer an estimate of the number of Americans whose calls or e-mails have thus made their way into content databases such as ­NUCLEON.”

A portion of the NSA's mammoth data center in Bluffdale, Utah, scheduled to open this fall.A portion of the NSA’s mammoth data center in Bluffdale, Utah, scheduled to open this fall.(Credit: Getty Images)

Earlier reports have indicated that the NSA has the ability to record nearly all domestic and international phone calls — in case an analyst needed to access the recordings in the future. A Wired magazine article last year disclosed that the NSA has established “listening posts” that allow the agency to collect and sift through billions of phone calls through a massive new data center in Utah, “whether they originate within the country or overseas.” That includes not just metadata, but also the contents of the communications.

William Binney, a former NSA technical director who helped to modernize the agency’s worldwide eavesdropping network, told the Daily Caller this week that the NSA records the phone calls of 500,000 to 1 million people who are on its so-called target list, and perhaps even more. “They look through these phone numbers and they target those and that’s what they record,” Binney said.

Brewster Kahle, a computer engineer who founded the Internet Archive, has vast experience storing large amounts of data. He created a spreadsheet this week estimating that the cost to store all domestic phone calls a year in cloud storage for data-mining purposes would be about $27 million per year, not counting the cost of extra security for a top-secret program and security clearances for the people involved.

NSA’s annual budget is classified but is estimated to be around $10 billion.

Documents that came to light in an EFF lawsuit provide some insight into how the spy agency vacuums up data from telecommunications companies. Mark Klein, who worked as an AT&T technician for over 22 years, disclosed in 2006 (PDF) that he witnessed domestic voice and Internet traffic being surreptitiously “diverted” through a “splitter cabinet” to secure room 641A in one of the company’s San Francisco facilities. The room was accessible only to NSA-cleared technicians.

AT&T and other telecommunications companies that allow the NSA to tap into their fiber links receive absolute immunity from civil liability or criminal prosecution, thanks to a law that Congress enacted in 2008 and renewed in 2012. It’s a series of amendments to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, also known as the FISA Amendments Act.

That law says surveillance may be authorized by the attorney general and director of national intelligence without prior approval by the secret Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court, as long as minimization requirements and general procedures blessed by the court are followed.

A requirement of the 2008 law is that the NSA “may not intentionally target any person known at the time of acquisition to be located in the United States.” A possible interpretation of that language, some legal experts said, is that the agency may vacuum up everything it can domestically — on the theory that indiscriminate data acquisition was not intended to “target” a specific American citizen.

Rep. Jerrold Nadler, an attorney and member of the House Judiciary committee, who said he was "startled" to learn that NSA analysts could eavesdrop on domestic calls without court authorization.Rep. Jerrold Nadler, an attorney and member of the House Judiciary committee, who said he was “startled” to learn that NSA analysts could eavesdrop on domestic calls without court authorization.(Credit: Getty Images)

Rep. Nadler’s statement that NSA analysts can listen to calls without court orders came during a House Judiciary hearing on June 13 that included FBI director Robert Mueller as a witness.

Mueller initially sought to downplay concerns about NSA surveillance by claiming that, to listen to a phone call, the government would need to seek “a special, a particularized order from the FISA court directed at that particular phone of that particular individual.”

Is information about that procedure “classified in any way?” Nadler asked.

“I don’t think so,” Mueller replied.

“Then I can say the following,” Nadler said. “We heard precisely the opposite at the briefing the other day. We heard precisely that you could get the specific information from that telephone simply based on an analyst deciding that…In other words, what you just said is incorrect. So there’s a conflict.”

Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), the head of the Senate Intelligence committee, separately acknowledged that the agency’s analysts have the ability to access the “content of a call.”

Sen. Dianne Feinstein, chair of the Senate Intelligence committee, acknowledged this week that NSA analysts have the ability to access the "content of a call."Sen. Dianne Feinstein, chair of the Senate Intelligence committee, acknowledged this week that NSA analysts have the ability to access the “content of a call.”(Credit: Getty Images)

Director of National Intelligence Michael McConnell indicated during a House Intelligence hearing in 2007 that the NSA’s surveillance process involves “billions” of bulk communications being intercepted, analyzed, and incorporated into a database.

They can be accessed by an analyst who’s part of the NSA’s “workforce of thousands of people” who are “trained” annually in minimization procedures, he said. (McConnell, who had previously worked as the director of the NSA, is now vice chairman at Booz Allen Hamilton, Snowden’s former employer.)

If it were “a U.S. person inside the United States, now that would stimulate the system to get a warrant,” McConnell told the committee. “And that is how the process would work. Now, if you have foreign intelligence data, you publish it [inside the federal government]. Because it has foreign intelligence value.”

McConnell said during a separate congressional appearance around the same time that he believed the president had the constitutional authority, no matter what the law actually says, to order domestic spying without warrants.

Former FBI counterterrorism agent Tim Clemente told CNN last month that, in national security investigations, the bureau can access records of a previously made telephone call. “All of that stuff is being captured as we speak whether we know it or like it or not,” he said. Clementeadded in an appearance the next day that, thanks to the “intelligence community” — an apparent reference to the NSA — “there’s a way to look at digital communications in the past.”

NSA Director Keith Alexander said on June 12 that his agency’s analysts abide by the law: “They do this lawfully. They take compliance oversight, protecting civil liberties and privacy and the security of this nation to their heart every day.”

But that’s not always the case. A New York Times article in 2009 revealed the NSA engaged in significant and systemic “overcollection” of Americans’ domestic communications that alarmed intelligence officials. The Justice Department said in a statement at the time that it “took comprehensive steps to correct the situation and bring the program into compliance” with the law.

Jameel Jaffer, director of the ACLU’s Center for Democracy, says he was surprised to see the 2008 FISA Amendments Act be used to vacuum up information on American citizens. “Everyone who voted for the statute thought it was about international communications,” he said.

Updated 6/16 at 11:15 a.m. PT The original headline when the story was published on Saturday was “NSA admits listening to U.S. phone calls without warrants,” which was changed to “NSA spying flap extends to contents of U.S. phone calls,” to better match the story. The first paragraph was changed to add attribution to Rep. Nadler. Also added was an additional statement that the congressman’s aide sent this morning, an excerpt from a Washington Post story on NSA phone call content surveillance that appeared Saturday, and remarks that Rep. Rogers made on CNN this morning.]

I am “neither a traitor nor hero. I’m an American.”

NSA leaker Snowden says he’s not avoiding justice

Snowden

Jun 12, 12:24 PM (ET)


HONG KONG (AP) – The former CIA employee who leaked top-secret information about U.S. surveillance programs said in a new interview in Hong Kong on Wednesday that he is not attempting to hide from justice here but hopes to use the city as a base to reveal wrongdoing.

Edward Snowden dropped out of sight after checking out of a Hong Kong hotel on Monday. The South China Morning Post newspaper said it was able to locate and interview him on Wednesday. It provided brief excerpts from the interview on its website.

It said Snowden, who has been both praised and condemned for releasing documents about U.S. telephone and Internet surveillance programs, said he was “neither a traitor nor hero. I’m an American.”

Asked about his choice of Hong Kong to leak the information, Snowden said, “People who think I made a mistake in picking Hong Kong as a location misunderstand my intentions. I am not here to hide from justice; I am here to reveal criminality.”

The newspaper quoted him as saying that he had several opportunities to flee from Hong Kong, but that he “would rather stay and fight the United States government in the courts, because I have faith in Hong Kong’s rule of law.”

obama_angry_2012_8_6

“My intention is to ask the courts and people of Hong Kong to decide my fate,” he said.

Snowden said he plans to stay in the city until he is “asked to leave,” the newspaper said.

Snowden, 29, arrived in Hong Kong from his home in Hawaii on May 20, just after taking leave from his National Security Agency contracting firm Booz Allen Hamilton, which has since fired him.

He said he had not dared contact his family or girlfriend since disclosing that he was the source of the top-secret documents.

“I have not spoken to any of my family,” he told the newspaper. “I am worried about the pressure they are feeling from the FBI.”

Two FBI agents visited Snowden’s father’s home in Pennsylvania on Monday.

Questions remain about why Snowden chose to go public in Hong Kong, a Chinese autonomous region that maintains a Western-style legal system and freedom of speech.

Hong Kong has an extradition agreement with the United States, but there are exceptions in cases of political persecution or where there are concerns over cruel or humiliating treatment.

U.S. authorities have yet to bring charges against Snowden or file an extradition request with Hong Kong.

Supporters of Snowden have organized a march on Saturday that will pass in front of the U.S. Consulate.

“We call on Hong Kong to respect international legal standards and procedures relating to the protection of Snowden; we condemn the U.S. government for violating our rights and privacy; and we call on the U.S. not to prosecute Snowden,” the organizers said in a statement.

House Speaker John Boehner: NSA Leaker a ‘Traitor’ and the Republican Party loses its soul.

John

House Speaker John Boehner calls NSA Leaker a ‘Traitor’ and the Republican Party loses its soul.

By Mario Murillo

First here is what John Boehner said today:

“House Speaker John Boehner today called NSA leaker Edward Snowden a “traitor” who put Americans at risk by releasing classified information to the media.

“He’s a traitor,” the highest ranking Republican in the House of Representatives said in an extensive interview with ABC News’ George Stephanopoulos. “The disclosure of this information puts Americans at risk.  It shows our adversaries what our capabilities are.  And it’s a giant violation of the law.”

Boehner endorsed President Obama’s characterization of two programs, which allow the NSA to gather information about phone calls made in the U.S. as well as information on foreign suspects collected from major internet companies, as critical to the government’s ability to fight terrorism. He said that there are “clear safeguards” built into the programs to protect Americans.

 “The president outlined last week that these were important national security programs to help keep Americans safe, and give us tools to fight the terrorist threat that we face,” Boehner said. “The president also outlined that there are appropriate safeguards in place to make sure that there’s no snooping, if you will, on Americans here at home.”

Let me help you understand why Obama is about to get away with murder.   By calling Edward Snowden a traitor the Republican Party has signaled surrender on all of the scandals.  Yep, they did it today.   John Boehner has sent Obama a peace offering that turned us into a one party nation.

Mark my word, without a miracle, you will see no action on Benghazi; you will hear that the IRS targeting the Tea Party,Conservatives, and Christians was from low level workers in Cincinnati and not the President.  Any hope of to any hope of holding Obama responsible for his actions against the reporters at the Associated Press Benghazi, or James Rosen from Fox News is essentially out the window.

Today you watch and see Darrell Issa put on a short leash.  Watch and see the media begin to crucify all who dare speak against the anointed one.  Today Republicans drank the Kool-Aid, thinking that America will destroy them for appearing to be the Party of exposing scandals.  They could not be more wrong.  To be sure America is dangerously apathetic but they can and will respond to facts just as they did with Watergate.

Snowden

The second disastrous lie is that Edward Snowden is a traitor.  He saw the Obama heart.  The president that has shown us what he does with classified information.   He does not use it to protect Americans.   If the NSA was so effective how could they have been watching the terrorists in Boston for ten years and took no action and in fact allowed them to live on Government subsidies?  If there are safe guards against “snooping” how is it that the IRS and Eric Holder use private information, obtained illegally to persecute the Tea Party, giving out their private  information to enemies?   John Boehner  knows there are no safeguards.

John Boehner should have found his conscience, held up the Constitution and shouted the Fourth Amendment: “The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.”

Tossing Edward Snowden to the wolves is a historic stain on Republicans.  He uncovered the greatest threat to the Bill of Rights in our lifetime.  He did it on the heels of several other acts of tyranny by Obama on our individual freedoms.  Now the one voice that could have stood up, right when we had the tyrant, is a lap dog.

In conclusion: Obama uses the intelligence agencies, the FBI, the CIA to expand and protect his job…that is why he has had no time to create a job for you.   Obama uses the Justice Department, the Treasury Department and the State Department to go after his enemies not the enemies of law abiding Americans…that is why after all of the billions spend on these covert activities in the name of national security we cannot even protect our own in Benghazi and we live in a far more dangerous world than before he was president.

obama_angry_2012_8_6

Obama is not trying to protect Americans from their enemies, he is trying to protect himself from Americans.

FINALLY

Even in all of this I do not feel fear, heart break yes, but no fear!   I have never believed that America’s hope was in any party.   Even in these dangerous times, the hand of God is on the righteous in a mighty way.   Yes, the NSA probably knows everything about us but so what, the devil has always known everything about us and God has protected us!

My point in this blog is to wake up the church to understand that God wants to use us to be a part of the American miracle.   Yes, it is devastating that the Republicans caved but God can still work a miracle of revival and turn this nation around.   I am still praying for Obama to repent, I am still bombarding heaven for anointing to preach and win the masses.  Yet, we must soberly embrace the facts and see where we are right now as a nation so that we can pray and speak out with conviction and truth!

new signature

NSA leaker ignites global debate: hero or traitor?

NSA leaker ignites global debate: hero or traitor?

By Ashley Fantz, CNN
Watch this video

NSA leaker ‘doesn’t want publicity’

STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Dozens of Facebook pages support or criticize the NSA leaker
  • Some say he’s a hero championing transparency; others call him a traitor
  • Edward Snowden’s actions have united strange bedfellows
  • Snowden told the Guardian he admires Bradley Manning but he’s different

In the 6 p.m. ET hour of “The Situation Room” today, Wolf Blitzer takes an in-depth look at Edward Snowden’s journey, the secrets he leaked and his possible punishment.

(CNN) — A 29-year-old who admitted leaking details of a secret U.S. government program that collects massive phone and Internet data now says he doesn’t want attention.

Too late, Edward Snowden. You’re getting it — on every scale, good and bad, across the Internet on social media and on every news broadcast. People of every age and range of experience, including national security experts, are weighing in on what you’ve done.

Some love you, others despise you. You’re now a lightning rod for spirited debate surrounding government transparency versus public protection against the threat of terrorism.

Like WikiLeaks’ source Bradley Manning, now on trial for leaking secrets, Snowden said he independently decided that the program was counter to American principles and should be revealed.

“There is no public oversight,” he told the Guardian newspaper.

Like Manning, he went outside the system, and critics are blasting the computer expert for not airing concerns internally.

Snowden’s actions have united some strange bedfellows. Left-leaning filmmaker Michael Moore and right-leaning commentator Glenn Beck tweeted that they think he’s a “hero.”

Democratic senators Ron Wyden of Oregon and Mark Udall of Colorado and Republican Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky say they’re worried the government could be overreaching with the program. Opensecrets.org lists Snowden as contributing to the 2012 presidential campaign of Rand Paul’s father, libertarian Ron Paul.

Dozens of Facebook pages supporting Snowden have popped up in the past day. There are at least 2 million mentions of the North Carolina native on Twitter. Comments are so wide-ranging it’s hard to put a finger on one theme, but social media aggregator BuzzFeed says that the word “hero” pops up more on Twitter than “traitor.”

Snowden’s strongest critics are using terrorism and incidents like the Boston bombings and 9/11 to explain why government monitoring is necessary to head off attacks. They say he should have kept what he was working on quiet to protect the public.

Some added that they don’t mind being watched. If they are doing nothing wrong, they argue, then they have nothing to fear from a monitoring program.

For all anyone knows, Snowden might have been taking all this in Monday through his laptop in his hotel room in Hong Kong.

On Sunday, he outted himself a Guardian video interview. He must have known the stakes; after the first reports in the Guardian, the U.S. Justice Department said it was beginning a criminal investigation into the leak.

On Sunday, Snowden told the newspaper, “I have no intention of hiding who I am because I know I have done nothing wrong.”

Snowden told the newspaper that while he admires Manning and Daniel Ellsberg, famous for leaking the Pentagon Papers during the Vietnam war, he considers himself different from Manning because he “carefully evaluated every single document” to “ensure that each was legitimately in the public interest.”

“There are all sorts of documents that would have made a big impact that I didn’t turn over, because harming people isn’t my goal,” he said. “Transparency is.”

But no matter his intention, he says he’s paying a price. The newspaper gave details of his comfortable life before he became a leaker, saying that he walked away from a $200,000 job for Booz Allen Hamilton, which let him work from his Hawaii home. Booz Allen Hamilton is a private consulting firm the government contracted to work on the program.

Afraid the government would come after him, the paper said, he told his girlfriend he had to go away for a bit and has been living in a hotel room and stuffing pillows under his door to thwart eavesdroppers.

Staying at the hotel is expensive enough, the Guardian said, but room service is killing him.

Snowden is hoping a country will offer him political asylum — a wish reminiscent of notorious WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange.

Like Assange, Snowden may be already on a path to cult status.

“Yeah, man, going to try and get this page big and then get donations for his lawyers,” wrote Rob Williams on one of manyFacebook pages supporting Snowden.

“Very courageous what this man has done,” Williams wrote, on a site with more than 1,000 “likes.”

This is about our government becoming an evil empire.
Brett Foley, Facebook poster

The focus shouldn’t be on Snowden, another page argued. “It’s not about the government seeing who I call or what you Google,” Facebook poster Brett Foley wrote. “This is about our government becoming an evil empire.”

There are several anti-Snowden pages, too. Rob Edwards Ellison wrote that he supports sanctions against any nation that grants Snowden asylum. “His alleged actions are not a political issue but rather a serious criminal matter for which the United States has the right to prosecute even if it means bringing the matter before the International Court in The Hague.”

By noon Monday, CNN’s story on Snowden had generated nearly 10,700 comments.

Some commenters are citing the Boston bombings and 9/11 to justify government monitoring.

Annie Mee said she was “impressed” with Snowden but “when people found out the Boston Bombers had been under surveillance by the FBI, people demanded to know why MORE hadn’t been done. “So how do you want it, people? You can’t have it both ways.”

Snowden’s actions are not tantamount to spying or aiding the enemy, argued a CNN commenter “Bacon2014.”

“It’s one thing to expose national secrets that are meant for foreign espionage. That’s treason. That said, this man exposed a secret spying operation on US citizens – both innocent and otherwise. We have a Constitutional right against such intrusions. That’s not traitorous …

“I am all for punishing people who expose national secrets. I am very against the whole concept of WikiLeaks. But this is different. Exposing the government’s violation of our constitutional rights is contextually the opposite of treason.”

Some readers suggested those outraged by the government’s program are being naive about terrorists.

“You’d prefer that terrorists operate in comfort with the knowledge that you’ll be fighting for their privacy?” Jermaine in Atlanta said. “Why would you not want the US government to be able to have all the information it can have when it comes to protecting itself and its people?”

Gregory Keener shot back, “The threat of terrorism does NOT justify abandoning constitutional principals (sic) … the invasion of privacy of millions without ANY reasonable suspicion for the vast majority.”

While observers continued to debate, a person with a unique understanding of the situation appeared on CNN Monday morning.

Former FBI agent Coleen Rowley gained notoriety in 2002 when ascathing memo she wrote about the agency became public. She criticized the FBI for mishandling the investigation of terrorism suspect Zacarias Moussaoui before the September 11, 2001, attacks.

Rowley said top bureau officials stymied a wider investigation into Moussaoui, then held in Minnesota on immigration charges. She also accused FBI officials of acting to “circle the wagons” after the attacks on New York and Washington. Moussaoui was later charged as a conspirator in those attacks, which killed more than 3,000 people.

Rowley was one of three whistle-blowers featured as Time magazine’s Persons of the Year in December 2002.

“I’m sure (Snowden) has a healthy awareness of the bumpy road ahead of him,” Rowley said, adding that she felt it was “sad” that “American truth tellers” have to go to another country.

But Rowley worked within the system, and that’s what she says separates her from Snowden.

What do you think? Was Snowden right to leak? Tell us below.