Saturday, May 13, 2006

If Jason Leopold's story is correct and Rove is about to be indicted, does that explain the timing of Bush's immigration speech? Is the speech scheduled for Monday night because the indictment's going to happen Monday morning, and the Bushies want to seize control of the news cycle? Just wondering....


And speaking of distractions, via Atrios I saw this report yesterday:

A former intelligence officer for the National Security Agency said Thursday he plans to tell Senate staffers next week that unlawful activity occurred at the agency under the supervision of Gen. Michael Hayden beyond what has been publicly reported, while hinting that it might have involved the illegal use of space-based satellites and systems to spy on U.S. citizens....

And, well, what do you know -- today AP has a softball story on domestic satellite spying:

A little-known spy agency that analyzes imagery taken from the skies has been spending significantly more time watching U.S. soil.

In an era when other intelligence agencies try to hide those operations, the director of the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency, retired Air Force Lt. Gen. James Clapper, is proud of that domestic mission.

He said the work the agency did after hurricanes Rita and Katrina was the best he'd seen an intelligence agency do in his 42 years in the spy business.

"This was kind of a direct payback to the taxpayers for the investment made in this agency over the years, even though in its original design it was intended for foreign intelligence purposes," Clapper said in a Thursday interview with The Associated Press....

Yup, the satellites are watching you, but it's all about security at Super Bowls and political conventions and all that good stuff. Plus hurricanes! Very helpful on hurricanes. So even though you haven't been told anything bad, we can assure you that anything bad you might be told is just flat-out wrong. There's nothing to see here. Move along.

(And the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency is not the agency whose unlawful activity we're reportedly going to learn about -- it's part of the Defense Department, not the NSA* -- but whoever planted the softball AP story is counting on you not to figure that out.)

UPDATE: I don't check Drudge all that often, so it took me until now to realize that Drudge has a screaming banner headline pointing to this softball story. Doing his bit too, I see, just like AP.

*UPDATE, SUNDAY: Oops -- as mouse notes in comments, both the NSA and the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency are part of the Defense Department. (See this New York Times chart.)

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