Senate to hold closed briefing on NSA surveillance, lawmakers say they weren’t informed of programs

By End the Lie

A portion of the Senate Intelligence Committee (Image credit: SenRockefeller/Flickr)

A portion of the Senate Intelligence Committee (Image credit: SenRockefeller/Flickr)

The Senate Intelligence Committee will reportedly hold a closed briefing for members to discuss the recently revealed National Security Agency (NSA) surveillance programs after some lawmakers complained about not being informed of PRISM.

The recent media furor began with a report showing that a secret court order forced Verizon to hand over all records for U.S. customers to the NSA. Soon after, the massive NSA surveillance program called PRISM involving major tech companies was revealed followed by Boundless Informant.

We now know that the whistleblower is Edward Snowden, a 29-year-old employee of Booz Allen Hamilton and former employee of the CIA.

Currently, individuals in Washington are engaging in massive damage control and it appears that Director of National Intelligence James Clapper lied under oath about the NSA programs.

The complaints from legislators, including Sen. John Thune (R-S.D.), are quite surprising given that Obama previously claimed, “The programs are secret in the sense that they are classified, but they are not secret in the sense that when it comes to telephone calls, every member of Congress has been briefed on this program.”

Thune, on the other hand, said that he believes most of the members of Congress, contrary to Obama’s statement, are not fully aware of the extent of the NSA program known as PRISM.

“Well I think that the times that this program’s been reauthorized, much of this operates in levels where there are not that many people — members of Congress who are fully engaged in what’s going on,” Thune said on MSNBC, according to The Hill.

“The Intelligence committees, obviously, are involved and Homeland Security to some degree, but most members of Congress are given a piece of legislation to vote on and I don’t believe that most members of Congress were fully aware of how broad this was,” Thune said.

However, the White House stated on Monday that 22 briefings on the program were held over the last 14 months. Some of those briefings reportedly included members of Congress who do not sit on one of the intelligence panels.

Despite the backlash from within the U.S. and abroad, a senior intelligence official told The Washington Post that there are currently no plans to end the massive surveillance program.

Since the briefings will be closed to the public, it remains to be seen how much information will be released for public scrutiny.

For those who need an overview of the revelations of the NSA’s surveillance program, you can listen to my interview on Flow of Wisdom Radio with Sean Anthony which aired live on GCN on Sunday, embedded below.

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2 Responses to Senate to hold closed briefing on NSA surveillance, lawmakers say they weren’t informed of programs

  1. Nora June 10, 2013 at 9:42 PM

    In an atmosphere where literally EVERYBODY in government is lying to us, from Obama to senate to house, to alphabet soup agencies, here is this one man, Snowdon, who has the guts to fess up and let the people know the truth and they threaten to disappear him for it. Stop paying your government folks, because it’s rotten to the core and needs to go.

    Kennedy was killed because he wanted peace.
    Whistle blowers are prosecuted, not the criminals they expose.
    The banking mafia runs the government, and we are in a jail of tyranny they built with our tax money.
    Our president is a fraud, a CIA operative who was born in Kenya.
    America is a British colony, and it always has been.
    The world is upside down, and everything they ever told us in school was a lie. We are totally exposed, while they operate in total secrecy. When is enough, ENOUGH?

    Reply
  2. Pingback: | On Prism, partisanship and propaganda! | | truthaholics

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