The April issue of Wired magazine contains a cover story by James Bamford describing plans for a secret National Security Agency data center in rural Utah. The article is full of fascinating facts and ideas, but its core thesis that the spy agency is engaged in a massive domestic spying operation is nonsense. NSA eavesdrops on the communications of foreign operatives and terrorists, but it seldom has the authority or even the means to monitor domestic exchanges between U.S. citizens. To take author Bamford’s thesis seriously, you would have to believe that the Obama Administration and members of both parties in Congress have conspired to sustain continuous violations of the law. How likely is that in a political system so polarized that it can’t even pass a federal budget? Bamford has decades of experience in trying to uncover NSA’s secrets so the Wired piece is worth a read, but don’t be misled by his shallow understanding of America’s political culture. I have written a commentary for Forbes here.
Find Archived Articles: