Revealing Raw Surveillance Data Opened Pandora's Box


The real story here—and it's frustrating, to say the least, that it is not emphasized—is that the actions of Attorney General Lynch, in dramatically relaxing the dissemination of raw surveillance data in the last few weeks of the Obama administration, cannot possibly have been anything but an act intended to unmask the identities of Trump et al. to the public.

Of course the media would rather commit mass suicide than investigate that crime.

The entirely predictable results of widening access to raw surveillance data are leaks, lots of them, which is demonstrated by the fact that a torrent of leaks began appearing everywhere within a day or two of Lynch's unprecedented action.

The need and, in point of fact, the unavoidable requirement of concealing the identity of all "US persons" whose foreign communications have been "incidentally" surveilled, by whatever means, is a legal necessity flowing from the Fourth Amendment's protection that such people be "secure in their persons from [warrent-less] searches." It is for that reason that the 1978 FISA law criminalized such unmasking as a matter of statute.

Lynch could not possibly have done what she did without Pres. Obama knowing about it and, indeed, approving it. Brennan and very likely Comey also at least knew of the cynical and criminally motivated maneuver; in all likelihood they approved of it: qui tacet consentiret videtur: "Silence equals consent," is an ancient and still applicable legal precept.

Here is the real crime, and it's a major felony: the Obama administration, with his certain knowledge and, hence, his approval, conspired to strip certain "US persons" in political opposition to them of their constitutional protections under the Fourth Amendment. In addition, to do so they capriciously and maliciously upended the explicit strictures of a statute nearly four decades old.

The identities of US persons contained in raw surveillance data are to be masked, and access to the data is to be very closely held. The contents of the conversations do not matter one bit, though in this case it also appears that the content was unimportant to the reckless charge of collusion with the Russians in election tampering.

If you give an arsonist a box of match what follows is predictable, and you are a co-conspirator in whatever destruction follows. Widening by 10-fold the number of members of the previous administration was as much as to take out an advertisement during the Super Bowl halftime.

That is the true crime here and it should result in lengthy prison sentence for several individuals at least.

This comment was left by Joe_NS at - Read more of Joe_NS's comments at


Read the Grabien article

Comment Category Tags