Earlier that day, The Intercept printed a brand new article primarily based off of disclosures supplied to them by an unnamed supply pertaining to the US authorities’s use of watchlists to watch identified and suspected terrorists.
Previously, The Intercept has labored carefully with top-secret National Security Agency documents admittedly supplied to journalists by Edward Snowden, a former contractor for the NSA. Tuesday’s leak, nevertheless, is of a doc dated August 2013 — weeks after Snowden selected to establish himself because the supply of the NSA leak and had already arrived in Moscow the place he later acquired asylum and stays as we speak.
“An August 2013 slide from the National Counterterrorism Center called ‘TIDE By The Numbers’ lays out the scope of the Obama administration’s watchlisting system, and those it is targeting,” Jeremy Scahill and Ryan Devereaux wrote for The Intercept. “The documents, obtained from a source in the intelligence community, also reveal that the Obama administration has presided over an unprecedented expansion of the terrorist screening system.”
Tuesday’s Intercept article got here at some point after the company reported on beforehand unpublished NSA documents, but additionally barely two weeks after Scahill and Devereaux wrote of one other NCC doc supplied to them by “a source within the intelligence community.”
In the 14 months since Snowden’s documents first started to floor on-line, the US intelligence group has time and time once more condemned the leaking of categorized info, charging the ex-contractor with espionage and reportedly going to nice lengths to stop one other main breach on par with the NSA disclosures, or the discharge of documents a number of years earlier by WikiLeaks supply Chelsea Manning. In lower than three weeks’ time, nevertheless, The Intercept has managed to acquire authorities documents with out authorization from most presumably one other supply.
Sources asides, the newest documents ready by the NCC and leaked to The Intercept forged a uncommon mild on the US authorities’s use of ever-expanding federal watchlists by making public the details about the Uncle Sam-sanctioned rosters of suspected terrorists which have beforehand not been disclosed to huge audiences.
On their half, Scahill and Devereaux wrote that the leak offers “the most complete numerical picture of the watchlisting system to date.”
According to the journalists’ report, greater than 40 p.c of the 680,000 people listed within the US Terrorist Screening Database shared with native police companies, contractors and governments across the globe — or round 280,000 individuals — have “no recognized terrorist group affiliation.”
Additionally, the documents reveal that the variety of individuals barred from flying within the US — entrees on the notorious “no-fly list” — has elevated by 10-times since President Barack Obama entered the White House in 2009 to a complete of round 47,000.
“You might as well have a blue wand and just pretend there’s magic in it, because that’s what we’re doing with this—pretending that it works,” former FBI agent Michael German, now a fellow at New York University’s Brennan Center for Justice, instructed The Intercept. “These agencies see terrorism as a winning card for them. They get more resources. They know that they can wave that card around and the American public will be very afraid and Congress and the courts will allow them to get away with whatever they’re doing under the national security umbrella.”
Tuesday’s Intercept story comprises a trove of beforehand unreported particulars regarding the administering of federal watchlists and its huge enlargement underneath the Obama administration. As of 2013, the web site reported, the principle terrorism database operated by the US comprises greater than 860,000 biometric recordsdata on 144,000 individuals, who’re however a sliver of the 680,000 people on the lists.
“When US officials refer to ‘the watchlist,’ they typically mean the TSDB [Terrorist Screening Database], an unclassified pool of information shared across the intelligence community and the military, as well as local law enforcement, foreign governments and private contractors,” The Intercept reported. Furthermore, watchlisting pointers printed by The Intercept final month revealed that officers don’t want ‘concrete facts’ or ‘irrefutable evidence’ to put somebody on the record, however quite “only a vague and elastic standard of ‘reasonable suspicion.’”