9 years ago

“It’s time for the disinfectant of sunshine”

The quote comes from Wayne Madsen, an American online investigative journalist referring that Edward Snowden will be not be the last of the whistle blowers that are capable of exposing much more of the entire SIGINT apparatus: “The more the agencies obfuscate and personalise, the greater the likelihood that other contractors will come forward.” Above you find a photo of the Burum ground station site of the Dutch signals intelligence (NSO/SIGINT) organisation, which intercepts satellite communications. The US department of Army and General Services Administration (GSA) stated (nieuwsuur) that they have a contract and use Burum as a telehousing setup via Viasat Inc. and Inmarsat PLC when for example American troops are fighting abroad. This means that the commercially rented side of It Greate Ear’ (Het grote oor), the Inmarsat part of the satellite ground station, is an important logistic base for the NSA and other international sister organisations. Burum basically gathers global military intelligence and civilian intelligence and provides or even sells this to international intelligence apparatus. All this comes from the aftermath of the September 11, 2001 attacks. Actually seven EU countries that have been substantially engaged in communications intelligence gathering alongside the US are Britain, Denmark, the Netherlands, France, Germany, Spain, and Italy. They all have a formal second and third party status under the NSA’s signals intelligence agreements, and are contractually bound to the US. Under international intelligence agreements – most of which remain secret – nations are categorised according to their trust level. The tradition of intelligence sharing between NSA goes as follow: the US is defined as First Party, Second Party (trusted relationships) are: UK, Canada, Australia and New Zealand, all others are Third Party, like the Netherlands, (less trusted) or Fourth Party (secret) relationships and this has been going on for almost three quarters of a century (NSA website)as early as 1960s. This all to monitor the military and diplomatic communications of the Soviet Union and its Eastern Bloc allies during the Cold War. By the end of the 20th century, the system referred to as “ECHELON” had evolved beyond its military/diplomatic origins, to also become a global system for the interception of private and commercial communications. That’s why this whole NSA monitoring scandal by German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s cell phone drama and other EU member states, acting all surprised by Edward Snowden’s revelations is ALL ONE BIG JOKE!! The German Army (spiegel) was using ECHELON (EU) and PRISM to support its operations in Afghanistan as early as 2011 and had entered into those exact international intelligence agreements as described above. Ending this article with Orwell’s Nineteen Eighty-Four famous words that resonate more than ever today: “Big Brother is Watching You!” and we don’t seem to care…..(photo credit Michiel Verbeek)