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National Security Agency Archives > JFK Facts

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From HTLINGUAL to Prism: the scandal of the new normal

The technological infrastructure of the American surveillance state, as exposed by whistleblower Edward Snowden, is new. The ideological pretensions of the U.S. surveillance state are not.

The role of the U.S. government agencies in systematically spying on its citizenry to advance U.S. policymaker goals extends back to the 1930s (as James Bamford recounts for Reuters.) The sense of scandal is not new. In Washington, deja vu is spiking. The excesses of the surveillance state have been exposed before, with domestic spying scandals generating headlines in 1975 and again in 2006.

What Americans see is the scandal of the new normal in Washington. …

NSA snooping scandal reveals Constitutional amnesia

“Then, in the 1960s, both agencies [FBI and CIA] turned their considerable power and attention to the domestic threat to official Washington posed by opponents of the Vietnam War. Some of what they looked at it was genuine criminal activity — people planting bombs or kidnapping newspaper heiresses — but most of it had nothing to do with criminal activity or with any foreign directed subversion. It simply consisted of determined dissent from what the Johnson and Nixon administrations were doing.”

via NSA snooping scandal John Judis, New Republic.

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