Once again, another government bureaucrat, this time the boss of the all-power National Security Agency, has taken us for idiots.
And there is a bridge in Brooklyn we’d like to sell you.
Here’s what Alexander told Congress:
“NSA does not have the ability to do that (spy on citizen emails) in the United States….We don’t have the technical insights in the United States. In other words, you have to have something to intercept, or some way of doing that either by going to a service provider with a warrant or you have to be collecting in that area. We’re not authorized to do that, nor do we have the equipment in the United States to collect that kind of information.”
I guess Mr. Alexander did not see the report  issued by the European Parliament back in 2001 about the NSA’s Echelon. Not only can they intercept and read your email, but also your telephone calls, fax, and other data.
Then there was the AT&T employee Mark Klein . He revealed a few years ago that his company was in cahoots with the NSA and they were vacuuming up enormous amounts of data from the internet.
Then there was a story posted at Wired that reported on the NSA’s new mega-snoop facility in Utah . “Its purpose: to intercept, decipher, analyze, and store vast swaths of the world’s communications as they zap down from satellites and zip through the underground and undersea cables of international, foreign, and domestic networks,” writes James Bamford.
Guess Mr. Alexander was out of the loop on that one, too.
We can only surmise that Alexander is either incredibly stupid, remarkable incompetent or he is lying.
If the former — which is not unusual — he should be fired immediately. If the latter, he needs to be prosecuted.
It is supposedly illegal to lie to Congress, although government employees do it all the time.