Yesterday on This Week with George Stephanopolous, Glenn Greenwald of The Guardian asserted that the National Security Agency can listen to the phone calls and read the email of American citizens. He went on to promise that more information would be released this week that supports his claims.
And what these programs are, are very simple screens like the ones that supermarket clerks or shipping and receiving clerks use, where all an analyst has to do is enter an email address or an IP address and it does two things: it searches a database and lets them listen to the calls or read the emails of everything that the NSA has stored, or look at the browsing histories or Google search terms that you’ve entered.
He explained that this snooping takes place without going to court or without even getting approval from a supervisor. “But these systems allow analysts to listen to whatever emails they want, whatever telephone calls, browsing histories, Microsoft Word documents.”
Greenwald also issued a challenge to the NSA, saying “I defy them to deny that these programs work exactly as I just said.”
Last week, Rep. Justin Amash (R-MI)’s amendment to the Defense bill attempted to de-fund the NSA, the amendment almost passed, the final vote was 217N-205Y. Rep. Mike Rodgers, Chairman of the House Intelligence criticized the effort saying it was “dangerous” and called the program a “real success.”