Congress Members, Executive Branch Officials and Judges Agree: Spying on Americans’ Metadata Is Unnecessary
Officials in the legislative, judicial and executive branches of government all say that the mass surveillance on Americans’ “metadata” is unnecessary:
- 3 Senators with top secret clearance “have reviewed this surveillance extensively and have seen no evidence that the bulk collection of Americans’ phone records has provided any intelligence of value that could not have been gathered through less intrusive means”
- Another Senator with top secret clearance agrees, and so does the congress member who wrote the Patriot Act, and more than 100 congress members from both parties
- As does the official panel created by President Obama to review NSA spying, made up of top former White House officials and other government insiders, including the head of counter-terrorism under Clinton and Bush and former deputy CIA director Michael J. Morrell
- NBC News reports:
A member of the White House review panel on NSA surveillance said he was “absolutely” surprised when he discovered the agency’s lack of evidence that the bulk collection of telephone call records had thwarted any terrorist attacks.“It was, ‘Huh, hello? What are we doing here?’” said Geoffrey Stone, a University of Chicago law professor….
“That was stunning. That was the ballgame,” said one congressional intelligence official, who asked not to be publicly identified. “It flies in the face of everything that they have tossed at us.”
The conclusions of the panel’s reports were at direct odds with public statements by President Barack Obama and U.S. intelligence officials.
- Former president Clinton (and apparently Carter, as well), agree that mass surveillance is unneecessay
- As do the chairs of the 9/11 Commission which was created by Congress and the White House
Top terrorism and security experts also agree, saying that:
- Mass spying by the NSA has never stopped a single terrorist attack
- Mass surveillance doesn’t protect us from terrorism
- Mass spying actually interferes with our ability to stop terrorism