who can give up essential
liberty to obtain a little temporary
safety, deserve neither liberty
-- Benjamin Franklin
"All governments lie and nothing
say should be believed."
"Power tends to corrupt, and
absolute power corrupts
absolutely. Great men
almost always bad men."
1. Gemalto Doesn’t Know
What It Doesn’t Know
2. Canadian Spies Collect
Domestic Emails in Secret
are we questioning the loyalty of British Muslims?
We never ask anyone else
disappeared: Chicago police detain Americans at
abuse-laden 'black site'
Warming World: Is Capitalism Destroying Our
6. Secret CIA Black Sites In
American Heartland For
This is a Nederlog of
February 26, 2015.
This is a crisis log, and I should say first that late yesterday I also
uploaded the last crisis index
that now covers the - currently - 777 (plus 10 later added) crisis
files I wrote, starting on September
1, 2008 (in Dutch).
There are 6 items with 6 dotted links: Item 1 is
about the French-Dutch corporation Gemalto, that seems more interested
in its own profits than in maintaining security; item 2
is about Canada's secret service, that currently
steals more than 1000 pages of text per Canadian citizen per month (all
your security - they claim); item 3
is about discriminating Muslims in Great Britain (and extended by me to
free speech); item 4 is about a black site
maintained by Chicago police, it seems with the end of forcing
out of people, without anyone - including lawyers - knowing where they
or what is happening to them; item 5 is about a
long article in the International Spiegel Online that is decent, except
for two silly last sentences; and item 6
is not an article but a video about the black site documented in item 4.
1. Gemalto Doesn’t Know What It Doesn’t Know
The first item
article by Jeremy Scahill on The Intercept:
This starts as follows (and
I like the title):
Gemalto, the French-Dutch
digital security giant, confirmed that it believes American and British
spies were behind a “particularly sophisticated intrusion” of its
internal computer networks, as
reported by The Intercept last week.
This morning, the company
tried to downplay the significance of NSA and GCHQ efforts against its
mobile phone encryption keys — and, in the process, made erroneous
statements about cellphone technology and sweeping claims about its own
security that experts describe as highly questionable.
In case you're
interested: I reviewed the above linked paper on February 20.
You may be interested because that review also contains links to and
quotations from two other articles. And it contains this diagnosis by
American, English and other secret services are not out "to
fight terrorism", though that is their pretext: They are out to
implement state terrorism by knowing in principle everything
anybody ever wrote with a computer or said
into a cell-phone - and that was and is their main aim from the
beginning, which started around 9/11/2001, because then they got the
pretext, the money and the liberties signed by the U.S. president.
In fact, this idea of
mine goes back to October 29, 2005
(in Dutch), though it is also true this got a whole lot
Snowden's revelations (of nearly 8 years later), for in 2005 I did not
know about the NSA, the GCHQ, and other criminal secret services.
Back to the article
under the last dotted link. This contains rather a lot more, that
mostly centers around Gemalto's claims that its leaks are a lot less
serious than it seems, which seem to be founded on nothing but their
desires to keep making profits:
The company was eager to
address the claims that its systems and encryption keys had been
massively compromised. At one point in stock trading after publication
of the report, Gemalto suffered a half billion dollar hit to its market
capitalization. The stock only partially recovered in the following
After the brief
investigation, Gemalto now says that the NSA and GCHQ operations in
2010-2011 would not allow the intelligence agencies to spy on 3G and 4G
networks, and that theft would have been rare after 2010, when it
deployed a “secure transfer system.”
That seems baloney:
Gemalto thought everything was OK with their systems until The
Intercept told them that was false, and they simply cannot have
investigated the leaks in the few days since they know about them, and
they give no evidence whatsoever for their claims.
I'd say Gemalto is in
deep trouble: The Germans are preparing an investigation;
the Chinese, who also use Gemalto-"secured" mobile phones are
the breach", and the general atmosphere seems well caught by this:
While Gemalto is clearly
trying to calm its investors and customers, security experts say the
company’s statements appear intended to reassure the public about the
company’s security rather than to demonstrate that it is taking the
There is a lot more
under the last dotted link.
2. Canadian Spies Collect Domestic Emails in
Secret Security Sweep
item is an article by Ryan Gallagher and Glenn Greenwald on The
This starts as
surveillance agency is covertly monitoring vast amounts of Canadians’
emails as part of a sweeping domestic cybersecurity operation,
according to top-secret documents.
Wednesday by CBC News in collaboration with The Intercept,
is sifting through millions of emails sent to Canadian government
agencies and departments, archiving details about them on a database
for months or even years.
The data mining operation
is carried out by the Communications Security Establishment, or CSE,
Canada’s equivalent of the National Security Agency. Its existence is disclosed
obtained by The Intercept from NSA whistleblower Edward
There is also this:
criminal code, CSE is not allowed to eavesdrop on Canadians’
communications. But the agency can be granted special ministerial
exemptions if its efforts are linked to protecting government
infrastructure — a loophole that the Snowden documents show is
being used to monitor the emails.
seems like the "European Convention on Human Rights", that in fact are
the opposite of the original 1948 "Universal Declaration of Human
Rights", since the "European
Convention on Human Rights" seems mostly to consist of very many "exceptions"
to human rights, where the secret services are allowed
(according to this "European Convention") to spy on anyone for almost
any reason. 
Here is a brief
overview on the incredible amount of data the Canadians are and have
been gathering for years and years, in the deepest secret:
In a top-secret CSE
document on the security operation, dated from 2010, the agency says it
“processes 400,000 emails per day” and admits that it is suffering from
“information overload” because it is scooping up “too much data.”
The document outlines how
CSE built a system to handle a massive 400 terabytes of data from
Internet networks each month — including Canadians’ emails
— as part of the cyber operation. (A single terabyte of data can
hold about a billion pages of text, or about 250,000 average-sized mp3
So merely the
Canadians - a country of slightly over 35 million people - gathers 400
billion pages of text (all illegaly stolen) each month
(which is more
than 1000 pages per Canadian, per month, though indeed the
Canadians seem to gather illegal information from everywhere,
because they can, and the government allows them to,
and nearly wholly in secret).
There is a lot more
under the last dotted link.
are we questioning the loyalty of British Muslims? We never ask anyone
item is an article by Suzanne Moore on The Guardian:
This starts as follows:
How loyal are you
to this country? How proud are you of it? Answer exactly. Explain
yourself to me. Tell me how safe you feel. Tell me what you think other
people think of you. Let me then declare the truth about you, your
family, your faith. You are a Muslim and I am British, you see, so I
can ask these things. My loyalty is taken for granted, though it
shouldn’t be. Yours is always suspect. Though it shouldn’t be.
The article is fairly
interesting and mostly right, and I leave it to your interests, but I
do have some remarks on a related theme, which is this:
Orwell? (<- Wikipedia) Well, he went to Spain, in order to fight
for the Republican government, got shot but survived, narrowly escaped
as Republican Spain was collapsing, and went back to Great Britain,
where he published a book about his experiences in Spain ("Homage to
Catalonia", which you should read), and was not bothered by
the English government, though that disagreed a lot with him.
These days, in contrast, at least in France, one may
not praise ISIS or terrorism, and if one does - merely verbally! - one
may end up in prison. The Dutch are preparing a similar law.
I think this is sick, for it effectively terminates free
speech by punishing certain kinds of free speech with imprisonment.
One must be able - in a free and democratic state - to say what
one thinks, and to explain it, without fearing that one gets imprisoned
for expressing one's opinions.
For the right of free speech = the right to say or write and publish
things (without offending or threatening people) that may be very
impopular (here and now).
More about this later.
disappeared: Chicago police detain
Americans at abuse-laden 'black site'
item is an article by Spencer Ackerman on The Guardian (which I got
indirectly, because the site of the Guardian has now been remade into a
1992 style horror, almost purely text,
displayed against large colored expanses, and is thoroughly
unworkable, and completely unlike the previous fine site, that
was contemporary, and like most other papers' sites, though often
This starts as follows:
The Chicago police department operates an
off-the-books interrogation compound, rendering Americans unable to be
found by family or attorneys while locked inside what lawyers say is
the domestic equivalent of a CIA black site.
I say. There is also
this (and this is a rather long article):
The facility, a nondescript
warehouse on Chicago’s west side known as Homan Square, has long been
the scene of secretive work by special police units. Interviews with
local attorneys and one protester who spent the better part of a day
shackled in Homan Square describe operations that deny access to basic
The secretive warehouse
is the latest example of Chicago police practices that echo the
much-criticized detention abuses of the US war on terrorism. While
those abuses impacted people overseas, Homan Square – said to house
military-style vehicles, interrogation cells and even a cage – trains
its focus on Americans, most often poor, black and brown.
Unlike a precinct, no one
taken to Homan Square is said to be booked. Witnesses, suspects or
other Chicagoans who end up inside do not appear to have a public,
searchable record entered into a database indicating where they are, as
happens when someone is booked at a precinct. Lawyers and relatives
insist there is no way of finding their whereabouts. Those lawyers who
have attempted to gain access to Homan Square are most often turned
away, even as their clients remain in custody inside.
As I said, the article
is long and good, and well worth reading. And I am afraid that this does
show the way in which the U.S. are heading:
Towards a police state, where people may be arrested for their
opinions, or because of what their friends or family members thought,
said or wrote; where they may be seriously mistreated by police
officers and be forced into confessions of things they did not do; and
where the police and the military have the power to disappear people in
secret and to stop any public reports on this.
Warming World: Is Capitalism Destroying Our Planet?
item is an article by Alexander Jung, Horand Knaup, Samiha Shafy and
Bernhard Zand on the International Spiegel Online site:
This starts as
follows, with this introduction (in bold, in the original):
leaders decided in Copenhagen that global warming should be limited to
2 degrees Celsius. Achieving that target, though, would take nothing
less than a miracle. With another round of climate negotiations
approaching, it is becoming increasingly clear that mankind has failed
to address its most daunting problem.
Yes. The article starts
with a pretty amazing picture from Quzho in China and with the
Humans are full of
contradictions, including the urge to destroy things they love. Like
our planet. Take Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott. Like everyone
living Down Under, he's extremely proud of his country's wonder of the
world, the Great Barrier Reef. At the same time, though, Abbott
believes that burning coal is "good for humanity," even though it
produces greenhouse gases that ultimately make our world's oceans
warmer, stormier and more acidic. In recent years, Australia has
exported more coal than any other country in the world. And the reef,
the largest living organism on the planet, is dying. Half of the corals
that make up the reef are, in fact, already dead.
There is also this:
Since 1880, when
global temperatures began to be systematically collected, no year has
been warmer than 2014. The 15 warmest years, with one single exception,
have come during the first 15 years of the new millennium. Indeed, it
has become an open question as to whether global warming can be stopped
anymore -- or at least limited as policymakers have called for. Is
capitalism ultimately responsible for the problem, or could it actually
help to solve it?
But as things
currently look, the 2-degree target is hopelessly utopian. It is
supposed to sound reassuring, but it is little more than hot air. Since
1880, average global temperatures have already increased by 0.8 degrees
Celsius, and the consequences have become widely evident.
There is a lot more
under the last dotted link, including graphics. This is a decent
article, except for its ending that also totally contradicts the rest,
and especially the opening sentence "Humans are full of contradictions, including the urge to
destroy things they love."
Here are the two last sentences:
Perhaps one should
seek to think a bit more daringly here: Maybe humankind will pull off a
miracle in the end. After all, destroying the things we love is by no
means a law of nature.
I'm sorry: There are no
miracles, and it is "a law of nature" that "we" also can
destroy what we love: everybody who is an adult must have done such
things sometimes. (But as I said: the rest is contradictory with these
two last silly statements.)
CIA Black Sites In American Heartland For
item for today is not an article but a video by The Young Turks:
This is a decent summary of item
4. This takes 6 m 24 s and contains quotations.
agree some spying is necessary, but I insist that any spy agency that
hoovers up, tries to hoover up, or desires to hoover up (as they all
seem to, from Snowden's documents) all
mails and all cell phone data on the pretext of "fighting
terrorism" is not
"fighting terrorism" but is preparing for an authoritarian
state, quite knowingly so, also, and is committing what counts
as state terrorism, at least for anyone committed to freedom