Tidings Of The Vaguest, Least Specific, Most Geographically Inclusive Terrorism

Intelligence,Journalism,Media,Middle East,Propaganda,Terrorism,The State


Cowed into fearful submission by choice, Americans are being bombarded with the “news” of the vaguest, least specific, most geographically inclusive threat of terrorism: Terrorism is everywhere you travel. You’ve got a target on your back. And, while we’re at it, consider yourself lucky to be the recipient of this most astute and accurate news from those who look out for you.

And the reason the NSA saints can look out for you, you ingrates, is that they spy on you. Now can you see what this is about? It’s a proxy for “protecting.”

This alert—what would you do without it? Have a happy holiday?—comes to you thanks to the very “dragnet that scoops up the personal electronic communications of millions of you.”

Or so suggested John Bolton, former U.S. ambassador to the U.N., on Fox News today, again. Is Bolton privy to this non-specific intelligence? No. But being party to the media-military-congressional-industrial complex, he stands ready to reflexively back it up, down to the nuts and bolts of it.

This stalwart supporter of the Surveillance State gave credit to the “National Security Agency’s sweeping surveillance powers,” and in particular to PRISM and “X-Keyscore,” which some of us have been protesting—these deserve credit for bringing you the tidings of terrorism. The Fox-News twit offered no cross examination.

U.S. officials have not offered many details on the nature of the threat, but apparently are taking it seriously. … John Bolton, former U.S. ambassador to the U.N., said the alert indicates the U.S. government must have some “pretty good information” about a possible threat.

Yes, that’s logical (not): From the fact of the warning (and not the facts), we can conclude that there is a threat.

The Guardian provides the necessary skepticism absent among US major media:

US embassy closures used to bolster case for NSA surveillance programs.
Congress told that NSA monitoring led to interception of al-Qaida threats but privacy campaigners fear ulterior political motives. News of the fresh terror alert came as Congress looked increasingly likely to pursue fresh attempts to limit the NSA’s domestic powers when it returns in September.
“The NSA takes in threat information every day. You have to ask, why now? What makes this information different?” added Stepanovich.
“Too much of what we hear from the government about surveillance is either speculation or sweeping assertions that lack corroboration. The question isn’t if these programs used by this NSA can find legitimate threats, it’s if the same threats couldn’t be discovered in a less invasive manner. This situation fails to justify the NSA’s unchecked access to our personal information.”