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Monday, August 5, 2013

Glenn Greenwald slams ‘robust oversight,’ says Congress learned about NSA spying via media

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Glenn Greenwald on "This Week"
image credit: screenshot from Mediaite Video
Madison Ruppert

Glenn Greenwald, the journalist responsible for  publishing the information leaked by Edward Snowden, slammed Congress’s “robust oversight” today, adding that “they are forced to learn about what the NSA is doing from what they’re reading in our reporting.”

Some are now claiming that Greenwald isn’t even a journalist while others have insinuated that he could be charged with crimes for working with Snowden, who was granted temporary asylum in Russia.

In his comments made on “This Week with George Stephanopoulos” today, Greenwald made reference to the fact that the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) court has determined that the government’s surveillance has breached the Fourth Amendment at least once.

The Obama administration has gone above and beyond to make sure that opinion does not get released. Meanwhile, others are fighting to pass legislation that would bring more transparency to the FISA court, which currently enjoys an impenetrable veil of secrecy. Senators have been pushing for more transparency in the FISA court for quite some time now.

“That’s extraordinary, to have a court opinion ruling that our government violated the constitution and the law, and not only can’t we read it, but neither can our representatives in Congress,” Greenwald said.

Greenwald mentioned his article published today, including the two letters from Morgan Griffith (R-Va.) and Alan Grayson (D-Fla.) in which the representatives attempted to obtain basic information about the National Security Agency (NSA).

Indeed, the NSA has misled the public and our representatives before, as two senators pointed out in stating that the agency’s fact sheet contained a “significant inaccuracy.”

“Members from both political parties came to us and showed us all kinds of letters and emails they’ve been exchanging, in which they’re trying to get the most basic information about what the NSA is doing, in spying on American citizens, and what the FISA court has been doing in terms of declaring some of this illegal, some of it legal,” Greenwald said to guest host Martha Raddatz in the clip embedded below. “They’ve being blocked from getting it.”

Indeed, some lawmakers said that they were not made aware of the extent or nature of the NSA surveillance programs, something which Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-Ct.) repeated on Wednesday.

“The revelations about the magnitude, the scope and scale of these surveillances, the metadata and the invasive actions surveillance of social media Web sites were indeed revelations to me,” Blumenthal said to MSNBC’s Chris Hayes.

“Beyond that, members who seek out basic information – including about NSA programs they are required to vote on and FISA court (FISC) rulings on the legality of those programs – find that they are unable to obtain it,” Greenwald reported today.
“If I can’t get basic information about these programs, then I’m not able to do my job,” Griffith said to Greenwald.

As Griffith noted, his job includes “making decisions about whether these programs should be funded, but also an oath to safeguard the Constitution and the Bill of Rights, which includes the Fourth Amendment.”

Obviously it becomes difficult to do that when one does not have all of the pertinent information.

“We keep hearing that there’s all kinds of robust oversight by Congress, and need not worry,” Greenwald said to Raddatz today, but he said that lawmakers who have contacted him “have said that they’re being forced to learn about what the NSA is doing from what they learn about in our reporting.”

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This article first appeared at End the Lie.

Madison Ruppert is the Editor and Owner-Operator of the alternative news and analysis database End The Lie and has no affiliation with any NGO, political party, economic school, or other organization/cause. He is available for podcast and radio interviews. Madison also now has his own radio show on UCYTV Monday nights 7 PM - 9 PM PT/10 PM - 12 AM ET. Show page link here:http://UCY.TV/EndtheLie. If you have questions, comments, or corrections feel free to contact him at

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