Powell Supports Government Eavesdropping

But, if you read the whole piece – isn’t Powell really saying that this eavesdropping should have been done after getting the appropriate warrants?

This wouldn’t be the first time the NSA has gotten caught with their hand in the cookie jar. Project SHAMROCK was the codename for a special program in which NSA received copies of most international telegrams
leaving the United States between August 1945 and May 1975.

Two of the participating international telegraph
companies — RCA Global and ITT World Communications — provided virtually all their international message traffic to
NSA. The third, Western Union International, only provided copies of certain foreign traffic from 1945 until 1972.

SHAMROCK was probably the largest governmental interception program affecting Americans ever undertaken.
Although the total number of telegrams read during its course is not available, NSA estimates that in the last two or
three years of SHAMROCK’s existence, about 150,000 telegrams per month were reviewed by NSA analysts.

Initially, NSA received copies of international telegrams in the form of microfilm or paper tapes. These were sorted
manually to obtain foreign messages. When RCA Global and ITT World Communications switched to magnetic tapes
in the 1960s, NSA made copies of these tapes and subjected them to an electronic sorting process. This means that
the international telegrams of American citizens on the "watch lists" could be selected out and disseminated.

Obviously, this is still going on.


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