Right Wing Nut House



Filed under: Moonbats, Politics — Rick Moran @ 12:34 pm

We’ve all seen the sneering challenge from liberal loons for someone to show them where our national security was damaged as a result of the NSA leaks. This challenge has two wonderful advantages for the moonbats:

1. In order to prove there has been damage to national security, the actual workings of the NSA program along with many technical details would have to be exposed. Since the idiots know the government will never do this because by doing so it would compound the damage, they can smugly claim that the program wasn’t necessary.

2. If the government did expose the program to answer their loony challenge, the galoots could then claim the Administration was “playing politics” with national security and skewer Bush for that.

Since we can then safely ignore the braying jackasses on the left with regards to this issue, for those of use who are more serious about the national security damage caused by the NSA leaks, here’s Orin Kerr who took information from the James Risen book and demonstrated just a couple of ways al Qaeda (and others) can now adjust their communications protocols to make it more difficult for the NSA to keep track of them:

Finally, and relatedly, the details of the program from Risen’s book arguably explains the national security interest in keeping the domestic surveillance program a secret. It’s not that terrorists may suddenly realize that they may be monitored; that argument never made much sense, as every member of Al-Qaeda must know that they may be monitored. Rather, I suspect the security issue is twofold. In the short term, terrorist groups now know that they can stand a significantly better chance of hiding their communications from the NSA by choosing communications systems that don’t happen to route through the U.S. And in the long term, some countries may react to the disclosures of the program by redesigning their telecommunications networks so less traffic goes through the United States. The more people abroad know that the NSA can easily watch their communications routed through the U.S., the less people will be willing to route their communications through the U.S. Cf. Bruce Hayden’s comment. No doubt it was a long-term priority of the NSA to ensure that lots of international communications traffic was routed through the U.S., where the NSA could have much better access to it. Indeed, Risen’s book more or less says this. The disclosure of the program presumably helps frustrate that objective.

So, thanks are due to our friends at the New York Times and the arrogant, unelected, and self-righteous leakers who made this story possible. They have the advantage over the rest of us in that when the next terrorist attacks occur, they will be comforted with the knowledge that they did their best to promote an absolutist position on the Constitutional rights of al Qaeda operatives and sympathizers here in the United States.

I wonder how eager they would be to meet with the families of people lost in any attack? And I wonder how hollow their smug, arrogant, self-righteous talk about “rights” would sound to people whose loved ones may have been saved if such an attack could have been prevented?


  1. [Here's a recent post of mine. the bottom deals with the claimthe left is making that this leak didn't damage national security.]


    Greenwald argues:

    One of the most revealing aspects of the NSA scandal has been the way in which Bush followers have been running around shrieking that national security has been damaged and treason has been committed by the New York Times. All of that is based upon the Times’ disclosure that Bush ordered the NSA to eavesdrop without judicial oversight (rather than with it). Now that the initial screaming and demands for hangings are dying down a little, his followers are confronted with the fact that this accusation makes no sense whatsoever, since whether we eavesdrop with judicial oversight or without it can’t possibly be of any use to terrorists.

    … So the diabolical, unprecedentedly dangerous terrorists who pose an existential threat to the U.S. that is equal to or greater than that posed by the Soviet Union are, in John’s mind, so uninformed, unsophisticated and stupid that they never heard of or knew about the 30-year old public law that defines the powers of the U.S. Government to engage in surveillance for foreign intelligence purposes. They never heard of FISA or knew anything about it until the Times published its story.

    And now the cat is out of the bag – now, thanks to the Times, they know that we have this law called “FISA” and have become aware that we do this thing called “eavesdropping” and now they will be able to thwart us. Is that supposed to be satire?


    This post argues that the leak coudn’t have harmed USA security because al Qaeda and its affilates must presumably know that they are being eavesdropped upon. If this is the case, then the eavesdropping is NOT unreasonable and is therefore entirely CONSTITUTIONAL according to Article IV - which only prohibits UNreasonable searches and seizures.

    As you may know, there are at 28 types of warrantless searches and seizures which are routinely done by law enforcement all the time. Among the many reasons courts have always permitted these is the fact that they are each reasonable.

    Therefore, since nobody communicating with al Qaeda or their affiliates can reasonably expect their conversations to be private, the POTUS-ordered NSA intercept program was constitutional.

    It is also INCONTROVERTIBLE that the leakers broke the law. The Intelligence Whitleblower Protection Act signed by Clinton in 1998 provides a legal way for a whisleblower to “blow the whistle” on questionable government activity which is classified. The leakers did NOT use this means; they went to the press. This is against the law. Plain and simple. The leakers broke it.

    [Which leads to this question: WHY DID THEY DO IT THIS WAY?! The answer is simple: They knew that the intercepts - although controversial - were legal and constitutional, and that therefore they wouldn't get anywhere using the legal whistle-blowing process. Therefore, they leaked it to the NYTIMES right before the 2004 election because they thought it could harm the president's re-election bid. This is the only logical explanation for why they leaked and when they leaked. It's another example of how the clandestine community attempting a virtual coup d'etat against Bush.]

    I also take issue with Greenwald’s argument that the NYTIMES and the leakers are not traitors (Greenwald argues that the leak was harmless to our national security because jihadoterrorist must already assume they don’t have secure communications. And he argues that a harmless leak can;t be treasonous.) HE IS WRONG AGAIN.

    The NYTIMES committed treason because the only beneficiary of the leak was the enemy. HOW? Though the leak may not have been an earth-shattering NEWS to the jihadoterrorists, the leak nevertheless CONFIRMED to the enemy what they may have merely presumed or suspected.

    Confirming details of the speed and range of intercept activity does actual harm to our efforts to collect useful and ACTIONABLE intelligence, and that obviously aids the enemy. HOW?!

    Confirmation alerts the enemy that they MUST seek other less interceptible means to communicate - such as by courier, or by other means. They CAN do this, AND these extra efforts make it tougher for us to learn about and prevent attacks - ESPECIALLY HERE IN THE USA. This is incontrovertible. And it proves potential HARM - of a potentially catastrophic level. (Remember, a successful terrorist attack can cost US thousands of lives and trillions of dollars and tens of thousnads of lost jobs.)

    In conclusion: Greenwald UNINTENTIONALLY helps prove that: (1) the intercepts are constitutional; (2) the leakers are criminals; and (3) the leaks hurts national security and aided the enemy. Thanks Glenn Greenwald. I hope your comrades on the Left learn have learned something as well.


    Comment by reliapundit — 1/8/2006 @ 12:47 pm

  2. There are a couple of general principles which are applicable to the question of how leaks about the NSA program damage security.

    1. Silence is golden. The only program, strategy, or tactic that can’t be countered is one that the enemy doesn’t know or imagine exists. It is a bad idea to underestimate the intelligence of your enemy by assuming they won’t be able to connect the dots and develop a counter technique. Therefore the less said the better.

    2. Information release is not a binary, all or nothing, process. Each bit of information is another dot to be connected. Some dots are dim, i.e. made known only in some obscure way to a few people who may not understand them. Other dots are bright, e.g. on the front page of the NY Times. Release of a dim dot is not a reason to assume that everyone now knows it and thus make it brighter. Release of a bright dot is not a reason to release other dots. Again the less said the better, even after exposure.

    Of course, none of this matters to those who are not at war except against the Bush administration.

    Comment by pbswatcher — 1/8/2006 @ 2:34 pm

  3. Pundit Roundtable

    Hi there, welcome back to PUNDIT ROUNDTABLE, our weekly gathering of pontificating pundits here at WILLisms.com. I am your host, Ken McCracken. Our topics this week are both very serious: Topic 1: The New York Times has been blowing…

    Trackback by WILLisms.com — 1/8/2006 @ 3:50 pm

  4. The lack of a terrorists attacks (in the U.S.) in the past week indicates that their leadership is as stupid as the left wing leadership. What better time would they ever have, 45% of the citizens have already accepted retreat and defeat, and millions more will with just one or two suicide bombs. One attack in Boston and Ma. + four surrounding states will give up immediately, Or. and Wash. State wouldn’t be far behind. Forget Ca. they gave up and not a shot was fired.
    I’ve said for years that Castro missed his chance. He had eight years to launch an attack and win. All he needed was 4 bass boats with three men each to travel up the east coast and attack Ma. with BB guns. Fear of getting an eye put out would have compelled the citizens to accept any terms he offered. He should have known that from the 8-9 terrorists attacks on American property and America itself (hundreds killed) during the 90’s with no response from Slick Willie. Oh well, maybe they’ll put Hanoi John in next and they won’t need but two bass boats and no BB guns, spitballs will be enough.

    Comment by scrapiron — 1/8/2006 @ 6:29 pm

  5. I have repeatedly challenged the moonbats that haunt my comment pages to show me ONE case where an American not involved in terrorism has had their civil liberties infringed.

    Last item here: http://mikesamerica.blogspot.com/#113677958670313324

    On another topic: 20 members of the GOP House caucus called officially for an election to replace Tom Delay, who is only under indictment. Meanwhile, Nancy Pelsosi was found in violation of federal campaign finance regulations and I challenged the moonbat corps to name ONE Dem House member officially calling on her to resign.

    On both counts complete and utter silence. Such introspection might get in the way of the get Bush mantra that has paralyzed these people for years.

    Comment by Mike's America — 1/9/2006 @ 9:25 pm

  6. Actually, everyone already assumed that NSA was monitoring ALL communications OUTside of the US.

    Comment by Dave Johnson — 1/11/2006 @ 11:17 pm

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