NSA document: critics of US drone program considered ‘threats,’ ‘adversaries,’ ‘propagandists’
By Madison Ruppert
Editor of End the Lie
A top secret internal US government website states that opponents to the U.S. drone program are to be considered “adversaries,” “threats” and “propagandists,” according to a Guardian report.
The website, which looks similar to Wikipedia, contains entries written only by individuals “with top secret clearance and public key infrastructure certificates.” These certificates are cards that give unique access to restricted parts of NSA systems, according a Guardian interview with Edward Snowden.
All of the entries are “peer reviewed,” according to Snowden, which means that the statements reflect official government positions.
In listing “threats to unmanned aerial vehicles,” the expected physical dangers, including “air defense threats,” “jamming of UAV sensor systems,” “terrestrial weather” and “electronic warfare employed against the command and control system” are outlined.
However, the article also describes “propaganda campaigns that target UAV use” as one of the threats facing the drone program.
Among the “examples of potential propaganda themes that could be employed against UAV operations” some shocking entries are included.
One is an example titled “Nationality of Target vs. Due Process,” which says:
“Attacks against American and European persons who have become violent extremists are often criticized by propagandists, arguing that lethal action against these individuals deprives them of due process.”
Of course, Attorney General Eric Holder has argued that their secret reviews of classified evidence based on secret criteria actually count as due process.
The NSA entry even contends that “drone strike” is a “loaded term,” which “connote[s] mindless automatons with no capability for independent thought.” Thus, the term “may invoke an emotional reaction,” which “is what propaganda intends to do,” according to the document.
However, the document does state at one point that some opposition to the drone program may indeed come from “citizens with legitimate social agendas.”
Yet when the document outlines “adversary propaganda themes,” it includes almost all of the points raised by people in the U.S. concerned with the drone program.
Among other “propaganda themes,” adversaries claim that drone strikes actually make the risk of terrorism worse since they fuel anti-American sentiment and kill too many civilians, according to the document.
Under a broader section on “threats” to the drone program, the document lists various lawsuits filed by the American Civil Liberties Union and the Center for Constitutional rights, reports by groups like Amnesty International and Human Rights watch, and even United Nations investigations into the legal standing of drone strikes and civilian casualties.
With this latest information, it is hardly surprising to see that on Tuesday the Obama administration blocked a Pakistani lawyer who represents drone victims from entering the U.S. to speak to Congress on the drone program.
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