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The inadequate judicial oversight of the US spying programs is leading the country toward a “type of fascist state,” says a former American intelligence linguist from Orlando.
The federal court monitoring the spying operations issued the final order on Friday permitting the National Security Agency (NSA) to collect millions of Americans’ phone records.
The Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISA) ruled that the bulk data collection program does not violate Americans’ privacy rights.
The secretive court contended that the program concerns the metadata of US citizens, which entails the numbers people dial in a phone call, the length of the call and when it takes place. Metadata does not include the actual contents of a phone conversation.
The Office of the Director of National Intelligence announced on Friday that the collected data “will not be used or accessed for any other purpose” other than an ongoing legal battle over the program.
It also said that the NSA will destroy the records “upon expiration of its litigation preservation obligations.”
In an interview with Press TV on Saturday, Scott Rickard complained of the poor judicial process behind the secretive courts.
Rickard said that the Supreme Court has “handpicked” 14 judges to preside over the FISA courts — 13 of whom being “very staunch Republicans.”
“You have a really poor situation where the Justice Department is heavily leaning toward a more fascist type of state,” he stated.
“There is a certain amount of hardcore rightwing representation in the FISA courts, and these individuals are working in secret,” he added.
Rickard disputed the notion that the collected data will not be accessed by any entity.
“These phone records are very easily available to foreign intelligence” especially Israel’s Mossad, he charged.
“Even though the NSA may not be receiving this information without some very illegitimate ruling from the FISA courts, the foreign intelligence individuals have direct access to this information,” the analyst concluded.