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The NSA's New Partner In Spying: Saudi Arabia's Brutal State Police

Soulskill posted about 4 months ago | from the with-friends-like-these dept.

Government 125

Advocatus Diaboli sends this news from The Intercept: The National Security Agency last year significantly expanded its cooperative relationship with the Saudi Ministry of Interior, one of the world's most repressive and abusive government agencies. An April 2013 top secret memo provided by NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden details the agency's plans "to provide direct analytic and technical support" to the Saudis on "internal security" matters. The Saudi Ministry of Interior—referred to in the document as MOI— has been condemned for years as one of the most brutal human rights violators in the world. In 2013, the U.S. State Department reported that "Ministry of Interior officials sometimes subjected prisoners and detainees to torture and other physical abuse," specifically mentioning a 2011 episode in which MOI agents allegedly "poured an antiseptic cleaning liquid down [the] throat" of one human rights activist. The report also notes the MOI's use of invasive surveillance targeted at political and religious dissidents.

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Heck, we probably already fund them (4, Interesting)

danbuter (2019760) | about 4 months ago | (#47534869)

I wouldn't be surprised at all if the US didn't set this agency up in the first place. At the very least, we probably provided the initial training.

Re:Heck, we probably already fund them (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47534889)

Are there any cultural differences between torture techniques? If yes, we could compare the american techniques to the saudi ones.

Re:Heck, we probably already fund them (2, Insightful)

Jeremiah Cornelius (137) | about 4 months ago | (#47534993)

Saudi? Hey! And Israel! Don't forget NSA and Israel [theguardian.com] - the most moral military on earth! They bomb hospitals under UN protection with the morality of the old testament!

Re:Heck, we probably already fund them (1, Troll)

Mashiki (184564) | about 4 months ago | (#47535119)

They bomb hospitals under UN protection with the morality of the old testament!

You mean the hospital where snipers were shooting at soldiers? Bet you also turn a blind eye to them transporting terrorists around in ambulances. You know that automatically makes it a military target. I'm surprised you didn't try trotting out the story of the school, where a bunch of people died the other day. Where various groups, including hamas started screaming "it was an israeli shell(ever see a shell not leave an impact crater?)" And surprise, it comes out today that the people were killed by hamas and a "errant" rocket. But I'm sure that you're quite thrilled to hear about the UN schools in gaza having rockets inside.

Re:Heck, we probably already fund them (1)

dcollins (135727) | about 4 months ago | (#47535265)

Citation? Will presume this is BS propaganda until then.

Re:Heck, we probably already fund them (2, Informative)

Mashiki (184564) | about 4 months ago | (#47535713)

Hospital [theguardian.com]
Hamas using UN ambulances [youtu.be]
Bombing at gaza school, probably from hamas rocket falling short [algemeiner.com]
Hamas rockets in two different UN schools [ctvnews.ca]

This isn't rocket surgery, not by a long shot. Hamas really is "the bad guys." Haven't even started on the tunnel stuff yet, and them using them as weapons storage. And commandeering all those materials meant for housing, and instead built it up for the sole purpose of terror, war, and screwing over the civilians.

Re:Heck, we probably already fund them (4, Informative)

jenningsthecat (1525947) | about 4 months ago | (#47536013)

...Hamas really is "the bad guys"...

Did you ever stop to wonder if perhaps Hamas are "bad guys" because the Israelis have really left them no choice? [youtube.com]

If you watch the entire video while maintaining a little intellectual honesty, you won't be so quick to condemn Hamas as being so much worse than the Israelis. There's plenty of evil in that region, and Israel is both directly and indirectly responsible for a very large part of it.

Re:Heck, we probably already fund them (1)

fsck1nhippies (2642761) | about 4 months ago | (#47536137)

Where did the first shot come from? That's all I want to know. ????

Re:Heck, we probably already fund them (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47537257)

That's one of those ever-escalating things that's impossible to say.

Re:Heck, we probably already fund them (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47536255)

/. has turned to shit because of the fuckwits who post comments which is filled with nothing but lies

Did you ever stop to wonder if perhaps Hamas are "bad guys" because the Israelis have really left them no choice?

Hamas is a terrorist group comprises of cowards who hides behind the civilians and use them as human shields

Anyone who says Israel have left Hamas no choice is both morally _and_ intellectually bankrupt !!

Re:Heck, we probably already fund them (2)

amiga3D (567632) | about 4 months ago | (#47536301)

Well if they tried to fight the Israelis in a stand up fight they'd get eliminated in a few seconds. By using civilians as shields it lets them last a bit longer before getting wiped out with the added bonus that Western Media gets a lot of really good shots of the dead innocents. I'd say that means Israel left them only bad choices. I'm not sure if they're capable of choosing to just quit fucking with the Israelis. When you are brought up on hatred it's all you know. I see no solution to this shit, it's been going on my whole life and not getting any better. Well, Egypt did manage to extricate themselves from it but the shitheads killed Sadat for it.

Re: Heck, we probably already fund them (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47536509)

Except they have the "choice" to stop being terrorists and negotiate peace.

I'm sure more countries expect some level of humanity from their enemies.

Re: Heck, we probably already fund them (1)

amiga3D (567632) | about 4 months ago | (#47536607)

If it wasn't Hamas it'd be some other group. It used to be the PLO years back. It'll always be someone. It's the way life is there. Their idea of peace is the Jews all dead and them in control. Then someone would be trying to kill them off. And so on.....

Re: Heck, we probably already fund them (1, Insightful)

kanweg (771128) | about 4 months ago | (#47537447)

What is there to negotiate? Stop shooting and the Israelis will do it too (their excuse is gone too). Near instant peace. Near instant stop of collateral damage.

And the palestinians can spend the money now spent on rockets on more fruitful things like water, food, housing, and their fishermen can spend time fishing etc. After behaving well for a time, the borders with Egypt can be opened and a further improvement of life can be looked forward to.

The above is all easy.

All that has to be done is stop religious nut cases from yelling that allah is on their side (then why do you need rockets; just pray the Israelis to death overnight) and make them realise that allah doesn't exist (given a choice, no soldier will take his favourite religious book to battle over his gun. There are only atheists in foxholes). That is the hard part. Especially in view of this silly idea that the opinion called religion should be treated with respect.

Bert

Re: Heck, we probably already fund them (1)

amiga3D (567632) | about 4 months ago | (#47537987)

Ultimately if your belief system calls on you to kill your neighbors you aren't going to be a very good neighbor. What makes me even more puzzled is how when a girl gets raped they stone HER for it. What the fuck is that about? Well, that's an entirely different subject anyway.

Re:Heck, we probably already fund them (3, Insightful)

jenningsthecat (1525947) | about 4 months ago | (#47538413)

Anyone who says Israel have left Hamas no choice is both morally _and_ intellectually bankrupt !!

You didn't watch the video, did you, Mr. Anonymous Coward? The guy in it is the son of an Israeli general who was pretty much a hero to the Israelis, and who in his later life became devoted to the cause of peace and was very much against Israel's treatment of the Palestinians. His son, (the guy in the video), lost a beloved 14-year-old niece in a Palestinian attack, yet he is critical of his own government's role in the environment that led to her death, and has managed to make friends among the Palestinians.

These are people who have a serious amount of skin in this game, yet they have risen above their own knee-jerk reactions, thrown off the propaganda they've been exposed to, and made a hard choice to try to heal the wounds and bury the hatchet. Sure, Hamas' actions are evil - but can you see that your actions might be over the top if you were forced into the shit-end of an apartheid relationship and saw your children not having enough food, water, and education as a result? If you had decades of being demeaned and treated as second-class citizens, with the same for your kids, with no end in sight?

The point here is not about who's right, who's wrong, who's better, who's worse. It's about atrocities having been committed by both parties, and about stopping that shit for the good of all of us. It's easy to stand on the sidelines and engage in name-calling. It's hard to get on the battlefield and fight. But the hardest thing by far is to forgive and to try to move forward when some of the bodies on the field belong to your family. The world needs more people who choose the hardest road - I hope I never have to make that choice, but if I do, I sure as hell hope that I take the hardest path.

Responses like yours only serve to escalate conflicts, add fuel to a fire that's already out of control, and encourage propagandists and tyrants. And don't assume that you'd be so different from Hamas if you were put into the same situation. Desperation makes people do things they never thought they would or could, and I seriously doubt you're very much different from the rest of us in that regard.

Re:Heck, we probably already fund them (0)

Jeremiah Cornelius (137) | about 4 months ago | (#47536081)

Lemme guess. YOU have a horse in this race...

Israel is an illegal colony, built on the murder and displacement of natives...

No wonder the only country supporting them is... the US. Also built on the blackened bones and murdered children of the people here before them.

Re:Heck, we probably already fund them (1)

sumdumass (711423) | about 4 months ago | (#47536251)

Israel is a boma fide countty recogmized ny yhe UN and every other country in the world. I don't know how you got this colony thing, but if it is grom the fall of trippli in WWI, it would at minimum be a legal colony.

Re:Heck, we probably already fund them (0)

Jeremiah Cornelius (137) | about 4 months ago | (#47536297)

Israel is a racist, fascist little hole, promoting genocide and ethnic cleansing.

Re:Heck, we probably already fund them (1)

Sun (104778) | about 4 months ago | (#47536751)

Israel is a racist, fascist little hole, promoting genocide and ethnic cleansing.

I always wonder about people who say that. Can you, please, explain, if Israel is after genocide, how come there are so few Palestinian casualties? I mean, the number, while indeed extremely high for warfare, don't even begin to threaten even natural growth.

Either Israel is completely incompetent at performing genocide, or genocide was never the intention, and you (and your ilk) just made it up to make Israel sound bad.

Shachar

Re:Heck, we probably already fund them (1)

Mashiki (184564) | about 4 months ago | (#47537551)

That's cute. Can you explain then why non-jews can vote in their elections if they're a citizen of the country? Can you explain why the leader of hamas, has two daughters living in Israel in which they are both citizens. Can you explain why their population has increased 2500% in the last 20 years. Can you explain why israeli's have no problem with the west bank? Can you explain why israeli's have no problem hiring palestinians, but people of the BDS insanity would rather put these companies out of business; especially when the palestinians who work there get excellent wages, healthcare, and so on. Can you explain why Israel goes out of their way to treat injured, critically wounded, and so on palestinians, but many palestinians will respond with "I'm glad they saved son/daughter/husband/etc, and I hope they grow up to be a martyr."

Can you explain why said "racist" country is the only democratic country in the region with arabs, druze, and so on in the kenesset, can you explain why said "fascist country" only seems to have a problem when the various terrorist organizations deliberately target civilians. This is why in places like sderot playgrounds are indoors, and so are the schools in bomb hardened structures. Because the palestinians were targeting children.

I'll wait with baited breath.

Re:Heck, we probably already fund them (1)

amiga3D (567632) | about 4 months ago | (#47536359)

Every country in the world has blood on the land. The land of Palestine has been occupied by so many different groups through the years. Conquered and reconquered. It's currently the State of Israel and it is so recognized by the UN. You call it a colony if you like but the rest of us have moved on.

Re:Heck, we probably already fund them (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47538061)

Most weren't native, palestinians are the descendent of the arabs who immigrated at the same time as the jews because arab countries wanted to sabotage the SDN mandate to create a jewish state there so they encouraged their citizens to move into what is now known as Israel. This was a good plan but it didn't work.

Re:Heck, we probably already fund them (3, Insightful)

Jeremiah Cornelius (137) | about 4 months ago | (#47536213)

Some Palestinians have, if at all, just seconds to leave before an attack but many do leave and flee to the school buildings that under control of the United Nations. The schools are opened especially for this and the UN personnel take care of the refugees and keep both "militants" and weapons out of its buildings.

It also provides the Israeli military with the exact coordinates of the schools. So guess what happens next:

Israeli shells hit UN shelter in Gaza [aljazeera.com] :

As many as 30 people have been reported killed and 100 injured in the Israeli shelling of a UN school in Gaza that was being used as an emergency shelter.

Al Jazeera's correspondent Nicole Johnston, reporting from Gaza, said the school in Beit Hanoun came under shelling on Thursday. She said sources had told Al Jazeera that up up to 30 people had been killed in the bombardment.

The AFP reported a UN official as confirming "multiple dead and injured".

In an interview with Al Jazeera, Robert Turner, the director for UNRWA, the UN's refugee organisation in Gaza, said there was no warning from the Israelis before the shells landed. He confirmed there were casualties.

He said the UNRWA were in contact with Israeli forces about a window to evacuate the school before the attack happened

"This is a designated emergency shelter," he said. "The location was conveyed to the Israelis.

"This is the fourth strike on our installations in three days."

Four attacks on well known refugee centers within three days. Does anyone still believe that such attacks are some random accidents?

Re:Heck, we probably already fund them (1)

shutdown -p now (807394) | about 4 months ago | (#47537399)

Yes. Thing is, if Israel really wanted to maximize Palestinian civilian casualties, they'd turn Gaza into rubble literally overnight, with casualties in hundreds of thousands. They certainly have the means - it being packed as dense as that, a few fuel-air bombs would cause immense casualties, without a single shot being fired in response.

Ironically, the fact that Palestinian casualties haven't even reached a thousand yet (and this includes the combatants) is ipso facto evidence that Israel is not deliberately targeting civilians as a matter of policy (though it doesn't mean that individual soldiers don't fire at civilians, by mistake or otherwise).

Re:Heck, we probably already fund them (3, Interesting)

William Baric (256345) | about 4 months ago | (#47537483)

All around the world, there are manifestations against Israel. I live in Quebec (Canada) and if I look at the what people post related to what's happening in Israel on our main newspapers' websites (mainly La Presse and Le Devoir...), I'd say a clear majority of native Quebecers (not Muslims) now have an anti-Israel sentiment. I guess the rest of Canada is a bit less anti-Israel, but I'd still say the general opinion is not pro-Israel. If the death toll were higher, the anti-Israel sentiment would probably become an anti-Jew sentiment, which would disrupt our society enough to force Harper to stop his blind support to Israel.

Israel have the military means to kill a lot of Palestinians, but if it did so, it would end up isolated. And without the rest of the world's support, Israel simply can't survive. So I guess the goal of Israel is simply to strike fear among Palestinians. And for that, all Palestinians must think there's no place safe.

Were the attacks on refugee centers voluntary? Did they deliberately targeted a few civilian to send a message? I'm guessing the answer is yes.

Re:Heck, we probably already fund them (1)

Mashiki (184564) | about 4 months ago | (#47537545)

Four attacks on well known refugee centers within three days. Does anyone still believe that such attacks are some random accidents?

You mean that the palestinians have fired over 2500 rockets in the last week and a half [nationalpost.com] that there's 0 chance that they're going to go awry and land in their own territory. Come on, there's several hundred incidents of this previous to the latest round of them firing rockets. And that was in the first quarter of this year.

Re:Heck, we probably already fund them (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47535305)

People defending themselves against invaders of their county, shooting at soldiers. But that is despicable...

Re:Heck, we probably already fund them (0, Troll)

sumdumass (711423) | about 4 months ago | (#47536257)

Were did this happen?

Palestine is not and never has been a country.

Re:Heck, we probably already fund them (1)

Jeremiah Cornelius (137) | about 4 months ago | (#47536189)

You basically argue: "We have a right to violate the norm of humanity and just, moral behavior because of a military expediency."

I spoke with the head military lawyer for the IDF, Joel Zinger. And I said “It’s clear you people are inflicting Nuremberg crimes on the Palestinians. Exactly what the Nazis did to the Jews. What’s your explanation?”

        He said: “Military necessity.”

        Notice, he didn’t disagree with me.

        I said: “That argument was rejected at Nuremberg when the lawyers for the Nazis made it.”

        And then he said: “Well, we have public relations people in the United States and they handle these matters for us.”
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ocj2ejJLTbg#t=219 [youtube.com]

When it comes down to it, Gaza was provoked into lobbing "Estes model rockets" into the land of their attackers, and then Israel respond with cluster munitions, flechette weapons and white phosphrous on the heads of children and cripples.

This is what I would expect from your shitty little racist country.

Re: Heck, we probably already fund them (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47536543)

Exactly like the nazi's? I would walk away knowing it's useless to argue with some one who cannot agree on common sense things. You cannot win, because valid arguments are not accepted.

Re:Heck, we probably already fund them (0, Troll)

jcr (53032) | about 4 months ago | (#47535129)

They bomb hospitals under UN protection

They bomb hospitals that UN personnel have allowed Hamas to use as weapons depots, and they call and warn people to get out of them first.

Taking Hamas propaganda at face value is a good way to make an ass of yourself.

-jcr

Re:Heck, we probably already fund them (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47535163)

Don't forget that John Kerry and Joe Biden are almost directly involved in Ukraine oil. Just search for Burisma Holding and look at the board of directors. Specifically Hunter Biden (son of Joe Biden) and Devon Archer (ties to John Kerry). If you look at these details you will understand the big picture of what the NSA is actually doing.

The U.S. government is corrupt. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47537729)

The book House of Bush, House of Saud [wikipedia.org] explains that the Bush and Cheney families worked for the Saudis, who paid them billions for their help.

Re:Heck, we probably already fund them (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47535471)

I pretty much hate everyone by this point, but....there is no one I would like to see DEAD more than the Muslim extremes and all of their supporters.

Your kids. Your women. You.

You have FAR too much power for how completely caveman stupid you all are. No redeeming qualities. A child from any other culture can tell lies with more cunning.

Re:Heck, we probably already fund them (1)

Jeremiah Cornelius (137) | about 4 months ago | (#47536231)

Many of the Gazans are Christian. From the 2009 assault on Gaza:

"Israeli missiles hit Hamas targets but also destroyed civilian buildings in the densely packed territory, including a Christian medical clinic in Shijaiya that had provided free health care to the poor since 1968. Atallah Tarazi, a Christian surgeon at Gaza City's Shifaa Hospital, said two ambulances were hit and six of his paramedics killed, and lamented the high percentage of civilian casualties received by his hospital.

Gaza's Christian community of 2,500 suffered at least three deaths in the fighting—including 14-year-old Christine Turok, who died of a heart attack from fear—and Gaza Baptist Church and the Palestinian Bible Society were damaged by Israeli airstrikes.

A broad cross-section of Christian agencies mobilized aid to Gaza and southern Israel.

http://www.christianitytoday.com/ct/2009/march/1.13.html?paging=off [christianitytoday.com]

Re: Heck, we probably already fund them (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47538521)

Really! What about Hamas hiding within hospitals, mosques, etc? Hate to break it to you but those are war crimes. Open your eyes, ratchet back your hate and get a clue!

Re:Heck, we probably already fund them (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47535003)

Not sure what that would prove. The US, along with the UK, Canada, France and other Iraq War coalition governments outsourced torture interrogations to countries including Syria, Uzbekistan, Egypt and probably the Sauds as well. Its just the difference between DIY torture, or paying someone else to do your dirty work. You're just as culpable.

Re:Heck, we probably already fund them (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47535103)

To my knowledge, France was not part in the last Iraq war coalition. However, you just formulated that a little misleading.

Re:Heck, we probably already fund them (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47535277)

Right, France wasn't part of the second coalition, but was implicated in extraordinary renditions.

Re:Heck, we probably already fund them (1)

TarPitt (217247) | about 4 months ago | (#47536849)

I am waiting for the ads for H1B candidates for these positions.

Another job that kept so many American employed now outsourced to foreigners.

Re:Heck, we probably already fund them (2)

jythie (914043) | about 4 months ago | (#47535259)

Not much point in comparing consider the CIA often outsourced its torture to such countries.

what's this hedging BS? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47535137)

Saudi Arabia is a corrupt, abusive, scumbag fucking regime that the US of A supports.

There WILL be NO peace in the Middle East or anywhere as long as the house of Saud is in charge.

Period.

No hope for Israel.

No hope for the Palestinians.

And no hope for our - the US of fucking A's - peace.

Re:Heck, we probably already fund them (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47535603)

The White House petition for the Death Star was curtly brushed aside. However, the real Death Star, the NSA marches on towards complete global control. One pesky Star fighter in Snowden has come and caused serious trouble. The fight is on. We have to see if a Darth Vader emerges to fight Palpatine.

Re:Heck, we probably already fund them (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47537663)

I wouldn't be surprised at all if the US didn't set this agency up in the first place. At the very least, we probably provided the initial training.

Sadly you are probably more right than wrong in making the claim. President Obama is a con-artist and the only reason e has not been assassinated is due to his "protected class" complexion. Then again President Bush II was a puppet of the "one percent" and ensured the military-industrial complex got plenty of cash via two simultaneous wars both on false grounds.

The people historians warned us about (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47534873)

They won't look like the villains of the past.

Foreshadowing? (1)

kheldan (1460303) | about 4 months ago | (#47534875)

Am I the only one who sees this as foreshadowing of the possible future for the U.S., assuming the NSA isn't reined in starting now?

Re:Foreshadowing? (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47534949)

I seriously doubt the NSA will be reigned in any time soon; unless we have a coup but don't hold your breath whilst we have a docile population with a severe celebrity fetish.

Re: Foreshadowing? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47536579)

Someone call George Clooney.

Re:Foreshadowing? (1)

GNious (953874) | about 4 months ago | (#47537505)

I seriously doubt the NSA will be reigned in any time soon; unless we have a coup but don't hold your breath whilst we have a docile population with a severe celebrity fetish.

Wouldn't the solution then be to get mobilize the celebrities, to get them into offices around your country, and have them deal with the NSA?

Re:Foreshadowing? (1)

Livius (318358) | about 4 months ago | (#47534977)

When it's already started 'foreshadowing' is not the right word any more.

Re:Foreshadowing? (4, Informative)

digsbo (1292334) | about 4 months ago | (#47535059)

Seriously. Bradley/Chelsea Manning was tortured to the point of having severe psychological problems (I am not saying being transgendered is a psychological problem, but I strongly question any psychiatrist who would not wait several years until after Manning had access to therapy to get over the trauma of isolation and torture to determine that Manning is indeed transgendered and not just showing signs of having been tortured). America is 100% on the hook for that. One of our own.

Re:Foreshadowing? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47536285)

WPATH Standards of Care advises on how to diagnose and assist transgender people. Transgender people often have to endure enough hoops and hurdles to access medically necessary potentially life saving healthcare. Any disruption or delay to transgender healthcare is medically unethical and an abuse of human rights.

Re:Foreshadowing? (4, Interesting)

cold fjord (826450) | about 4 months ago | (#47537011)

Seriously. Bradley/Chelsea Manning was tortured to the point of having severe psychological problems (I am not saying being transgendered is a psychological problem, but I strongly question any psychiatrist who would not wait several years until after Manning had access to therapy to get over the trauma of isolation and torture to determine that Manning is indeed transgendered and not just showing signs of having been tortured). America is 100% on the hook for that. One of our own.

Sorry, but your view is total nonsense that isn't connected to the facts. Bradley Manning apparently had mental health and temperament issues long before he was arrested, and I doubt they are resolved. They seem to have played a role in the actions that put him in prison.

WikiLeaks: Bradley Manning 'had history of suicidal thoughts' [telegraph.co.uk]

...Manning had contemplated suicide six to eight months earlier after his arrest in Iraq. The evidence included a noose Manning had fashioned from a bedsheet while confined in Kuwait, and a written statement he made upon arrival at Quantico in July 2010 that he was "always planning and never acting" on suicidal impulses. .... Blenis, who spent more time with Manning, said Manning chose not to speak most of the time except for short, yes-or-no answers. He said Manning spurned his offers to play chess or work brain teasers by arrogantly responding, "They're a little below my level."

WikiLeaks: Private Bradley Manning sent superiors picture of himself dressed as a woman [telegraph.co.uk]

Bradley Manning told his military superiors that he was emotionally unstable and sent them a picture of himself dressed as a woman but his warnings were never passed up a chaotic chain-of-command, a court heard on Friday. ...

Pte Manning's civilian defence lawyer, David Coombs, told the court martial hearing that his client had sent a distressed email to his immediate supervisor, Master Sergeant Paul Watkins. "He told [Watkins] he was suffering a gender identity disorder and in that email even had a picture of himself dressed as a woman."

In the email Pte Manning warned that his ability to work as an analyst of attacks by Shia militants in Iraq was being impaired by his emotional problems. .....

On December 12, the defendant apparently became enraged during a meeting and knocked over a chair while screaming at more senior soldiers.

Then on December 20, he allegedly flipped over a table during a counselling session, destroying the computer monitor that was sitting on top of it. Comrades had restrain him because they believed he was "going for a weapon rack", Mr Coombs told the court.

Bradley Manning, suspected source of Wikileaks documents, raged on his Facebook page [telegraph.co.uk]

Mr Manning, who is openly homosexual, began his gloomy postings on January 12, saying: "Bradley Manning didn't want this fight. Too much to lose, too fast."

At the beginning of May, when he was serving at a US military base near Baghdad, he changed his status to: "Bradley Manning is now left with the sinking feeling that he doesn't have anything left."

Five days later he said he was "livid" after being "lectured by ex-boyfriend", then later the same day said he was "not a piece of equipment" and was "beyond frustrated with people and society at large".

His tagline on his personal page reads: "Take me for who I am, or face the consequences!"

Re:Foreshadowing? (1)

kheldan (1460303) | about 4 months ago | (#47535099)

When it's already started..

When I can still say things like "HEY NSA, YOU SUCK ASS AND NEED TO BE SHUT DOWN, YOU'RE UN-AMERICAN!" and not get arrested in the middle of the night? Then it's still 'foreshadowing'.

Re:Foreshadowing? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47535441)

When I can still say things like "HEY NSA, YOU SUCK ASS AND NEED TO BE SHUT DOWN, YOU'RE UN-AMERICAN!" and not get arrested in the middle of the night? Then it's still 'foreshadowing'.

No sweetie.. That is just because nobody cares what a fat smelly basement dwelling mummy's forum warrior says on the internet.

Now try it along with a few hundred others while physically standing in front of the white house when some important dignitary is visiting.

Re:Foreshadowing? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47535767)

Say what you want but the RNC is making Obummer look like Queer who can not lead a Nation.

Re:Foreshadowing? (2)

Livius (318358) | about 4 months ago | (#47535797)

If you think freedom is just about insults, you have completely taken it for granted. Which is probably why you haven't noticed now that's gone.

Re:Foreshadowing? (1)

kheldan (1460303) | about 4 months ago | (#47536299)

Fuck off, OK? Apparently this is 'No Sense of Humor Friday' and nobody told me.

Re:Foreshadowing? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47535147)

The US is already using Guantanamo for such shit. Now they are outsourcing the problem, as Guantanamo has a negative impact on public opinion.

And there it is . . . (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47534877)

You become what you hate.

Saudi ? (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47534895)

At least a country in middle east that have nothing to do with 911, of course...

http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hijackers_in_the_September_11_attacks

No Big Deal (1, Interesting)

xdor (1218206) | about 4 months ago | (#47536169)

Since the CIA and Saudi worked together to organize 911, its only natural the relationship should continue...

Re:Saudi ? (1)

cold fjord (826450) | about 4 months ago | (#47536825)

The government of Saudi Arabia didn't have anything to do with the attacks. Or are you trying to claim that they did because some members of the international terrorist group al Qaida that happened to be Saudi citizens took part in the attack? You do realize that al Qaida threatens the Saudi government as well, don't you?

What is that post we keep seeing on Slashdot? Correlation is not causation?

It is hard to understand or solve problems when you keep focusing on irrelevant details.

Blowback 9/11: Why some young Saudis hate the USA (4, Informative)

Paul Fernhout (109597) | about 4 months ago | (#47538393)

It's called "Blowback". In order to prevent another 9/11/2001 or worse, it seems important to understand the motivations behind the first one (I'm using the year to distinguish from the US-supported 9/11/1973 coup in Chile). Like you, I also doubt the Saudi government had anything to do directly with funding that 9/11. In fact, that 9/11 seems more a protest against the Saudi government by Saudi citizens, but with the protest directed at the perceived source of funding for the Saudi government by the USA. Let's turn the political situation around hypothetically to try to understand the emotional aspect of it better, imagining what it might be like if the Saudi government was meddling directly in US affairs.

Here is a first cut at trying to understand the social/psychological dynamics of the situation from a different perspective. Imagine Saudi Arabia somehow was sending billions of dollars of campaign donations annually to the USA to keep in power an oppressive administration in the USA (passing laws forcing all US women to wear burkas, only allowing males with brown eyes to hold public office or get university degrees, and with capital punishment on suspicion of premarital sex or homosexuality). Also, imagine that there were millions of Saudi soldiers stationed in US states to ensure a flow of manufactured goods to Saudi Arabia despite strikes and other unrest in the USA and nearby countries. Also imagine that the Saudis were also funding Japanese people who, from fear of earthquakes and tsunamis in Japan, had moved to Canada, bought a lot of the land, claimed a right to govern all of Canada because some Japanese people had moved to Canada 10,000 years ago across the land bridge from Siberia, and then forced most non-Japanese Canadian citizens in all of Canada to flee to the USA and were killing non-Japanese Canadians who remained and resisted the Japanese occupation. If you are a US citizen in such a hypothetical world, would you be at all upset by such a situation whatever your eye color? Imagine that some very upset and frustrated young US citizens decide to protest this situation by attacking some big buildings in Saudi Arabia by hijacking airliners to show how unhappy they are with Saudi government foreign policy and to show how they felt their hopes and dreams for a good life in the USA had been thwarted by Saudi meddling in US government. Imagine this attack is then used by Saudi Arabia to justify invading Mexico (where some of the hypothetical American hijackers trained) and Brazil (because it is claimed by the Saudis to have WMDs that hypothetical young Americans might use against Saudis). Imagine the Saudis then start supplying "intelligence" to the US government from listening to all US telephone calls about specific US citizens who might be unhappy about the situation and perhaps plotting unrest in the USA or planning more blowback against the Saudis.

Now flip this scenario around and back to reality (US funding Saudis and Israel and US troops in the Middle East) and does the fact the almost all of the 9/11 hijackers were frustrated young Saudi men make more sense?

Soon after 9/11 I saw an analysis in a magazine (maybe the Atlantic or New Yorker) of why the hijackers did what they did. I have not seen many such articles since. The point made there was that these were mostly young men whose hopes for significant advancement in Saudi society had seemed thwarted and they were led to blame the USA for that, because the USA was propping up the Saudi regime and otherwise meddling in the Middle East. Of course, being promised eternal bliss in "paradise" for becoming murderers can not be ignored as a related aspect of religious fundamentalism (including outrage about the occupation of Palestine), so there are layers of complexity here for that and other reasons. The motivations of the hijackers themselves may also be somewhat different than the motivations of the organizers at higher levels.

See also:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/H... [wikipedia.org]
"The hijackers in the September 11 attacks were 19 men affiliated with al-Qaeda, and 15 of the 19 were citizens of Saudi Arabia. ... "

And:
http://www.dailykos.com/story/... [dailykos.com]
"The 9-11 Commission held its twelfth and final public hearing June 16-17, 2004, in Washington, DC. On June 16 the Commission heard from several of the federal government's top law enforcement and intelligence experts on al Qaeda and the 9-11 plot. It was at this hearing that the question "What motivated them to do it?" was finally asked. Lee Hamilton, vice chair of the 9/11 Commission said, "I'm interested in the question of motivation of these hijackers, and my question is really directed to the agents. ... what have you found out about why these men did what they did? What motivated them to do it?" The agents looked at each other, apparently not eager to be the one to have to say it. FBI Special Agent Fitzgerald stepped up to the plate and laid out the facts, "I believe they feel a sense of outrage against the United States. They identify with the Palestinian problem, they identify with people who oppose repressive regimes and I believe they tend to focus their anger on the United States." But this testimony was kept out of the 9/11 Commission Report and no recommendation was given to address the main motive for the 9/11 attacks."

So, it was not so much that "they hate us because we were free" (although there were some religious aspects of that). It was more that "they hate us because we fund their oppressors". Granted, there are additional layers of complexity including from religion and economics, but that is part of the bigger picture.

To bring this back to the source original article, it says: "The report also notes the MOI's use of invasive surveillance targeted at political and religious dissidents. But as the State Department publicly catalogued those very abuses, the NSA worked to provide increased surveillance assistance to the ministry that perpetrated them."

So, the USA is left in a difficult situation. Saudi citizens who resent their oppression or other treatment by a government propped up by US support still have reason to dislike the US government. But, if the US government does not help the Saudis via the NSA identify and suppress dissenting Saudi young men, then another 9/11/2001 becomes more likely in the short term, even as such a disaster or much worse becomes more certain in the long term if the USA continues to support a repressive Saudi government and otherwise take sides in Middle Eastern politics. What is the morally and politically correct solution to this dilemma? What policies should a US citizen now support? It's the kind of situation best avoided (see George Washington's farewell address which warned to avoid entanglements in foreign affairs) but it is too late for that. Also, to get to a good resolution, we have to acknowledge the truths behind the conflicts, but often conflicts include suppressing or spinning relevant details like misleadingly claiming "they hate us because we are free".

One thing I feel strongly is that given the increasing power of WMDs including bioweapons, the margin for political error grows smaller and smaller. Given that increasing risk, oppression does not seem like a good long-term strategy to ensure peace and prosperity in the 21st century. So, I feel we need to move instead towards some sort of transcendence of these 20th century (and earlier) conflicts. That included rethinking security to be mutual and intrinsic, like I mention here:
http://www.pdfernhout.net/reco... [pdfernhout.net]

But others have been saying similar things for a long time:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/R... [wikipedia.org]
http://pugwash.org/ [pugwash.org]
http://christianity.about.com/... [about.com]

And maybe we could create better software tools to help resolve such conflicts in a healthy way? As I suggested three years ago:
http://pcast.ideascale.com/a/d... [ideascale.com]
"This suggestion is about how civilians could benefit by have access to the sorts of "sensemaking" tools the intelligence community (as well as corporations) aspire to have, in order to design more joyful, secure, and healthy civilian communities (including through creating a more sustainable and resilient open manufacturing infrastructure for such communities). It outlines (including at a linked elaboration) why the intelligence community should consider funding the creation of such free and open source software (FOSS) "dual use" intelligence applications as a way to reduce global tensions through increased local prosperity, health, and with intrinsic mutual security."

Well ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47534919)

The NSA just aspires to that level of control.

Don't worry, America, your fascist state is well on its way.

US has the Freedom to be Ignored (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47534939)

The American regime is much cleverer than any dictatorship.

Insecure dictators try to silence everyone in advance, but it's much easier to monitor passively, drown the masses out, and deal only with the one or two individuals who get too loud. There is ideologically no difference between the USA and Saudi Arabia, and those who work for the signals monitoring services of either do so with the same oppressive goals in mind.

Thank goodness we topped that Iraqi-sponsored Afghan, though, eh?

And yet, .... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47534945)

AQ/ISIS is a great deal more brutal than is Saudi Arabia.

Re:And yet, .... (2)

Streetlight (1102081) | about 4 months ago | (#47535005)

AQ/ISIS is a great deal more brutal than is Saudi Arabia.

I'm not sure about that. ISIS has a "big mouth." We don't hear much about what goes on in Saudia Arabia.

Mixed marlinspike refused to help them... (3, Interesting)

dremspider (562073) | about 4 months ago | (#47535009)

Had to go somewhere. http://www.thoughtcrime.org/bl... [thoughtcrime.org]

I'm shocked! (1)

Livius (318358) | about 4 months ago | (#47535047)

...that this hasn't come up sooner.

I guess the NSA has given up on trying to be subtle.

Like a Reese peanut butter commercial (1)

JoeyRox (2711699) | about 4 months ago | (#47535091)

Hey, you put your illegal spying program in my torture organization. No, you put your torture organization into my my illegal spying program. Wait...what? Oh, this is delicious!

For those too young: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v... [youtube.com]

Re:Like a Reese peanut butter commercial (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47535387)

A marriage made in heaven (hell?).

Re:Like a Reese peanut butter commercial (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47535573)

Reading these comments wasn't supposed to make me hungry. Grrr...

Looking good baby (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47535121)

USA you're looking good baby YA BABY YAH!!!

The United States only cares about human rights... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47535127)

When one of their enemies engage in the oppression of their own people. Otherwise if they are an ally of the United States, we don't give a shit about what they do to their own people. They can be Hitler reincarnate and as long as they support US interests, the USA will turn a complete and total blind eye to their rampant abuses.

Democracy, rights for woman, freedom of religion in Saudia Arabia, fuck that! They sell lots of oil and we'd better not tick them off!

Re:The United States only cares about human rights (2)

jythie (914043) | about 4 months ago | (#47535299)

Pretty much.

This is why I kinda miss realpolitik, yeah it was cynical and calculating, but at least it was honest about it. The problem with a population focused on morality is ethics are a lot easier to twist and tug on emotions then pragmatism.

It's All Just to Protect Us From Terrorists! (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47535133)

Yep - 12 major terrorist plots foiled this week alone.
Be thankful for this.
And don't forget to check under the bed before you go to sleep.

Re:It's All Just to Protect Us From Terrorists! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47535261)

And don't forget to check under the bed before you go to sleep.

Yes, you might find your dentures, if they weren't in the fridge (no, the bathroom light does not automatically come on when you open the door, though that's not a bad idea come to think of it)

Re:It's All Just to Protect Us From Terrorists! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47535311)

Correct me if I'm wrong but I think I read that the FBI has been generating terrorist plots so they have folks to arrest and brag about their success at stopping terrorism. Several of them got away from the FBI and were carried out, allegedly the Boston Marathon bombing. If that's true, shouldn't the FBI folks involved be prosecuted?

Invasive Surveillance (1)

mridion (2731595) | about 4 months ago | (#47535281)

Do by invasive surveillance they mean something like what has happened to mean something like what it appears the NSA is involved with for James Walbert. Perhaps some nice extremely invasive tech as described here... http://www.extremetech.com/ext... [extremetech.com]

What, no panopticon? (3, Interesting)

Andy_R (114137) | about 4 months ago | (#47535363)

"The report also notes the MOI's use of invasive surveillance targeted at political and religious dissidents."

So, arguably less evil than western governments, who use invasive surveillance targeted at absolutely everyone.

Re:What, no panopticon? (3, Insightful)

Sabriel (134364) | about 4 months ago | (#47535887)

I worked that argument out with a simple question: "Self, if you were a random peasant with a vocal opinion on how things should be run differently, would you last longer in the West or in Saudi Arabia?"

That the NSA is knowingly supplying the torturer doesn't make the torturer less evil, any more than someone else doing the torturing makes the NSA less culpable for their knowing supply.

New? (1)

BenSchuarmer (922752) | about 4 months ago | (#47535411)

You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means.

If they didn't have oil.. (1)

Rigel47 (2991727) | about 4 months ago | (#47535459)

and weren't willing to play ball our way we'd decry them as a murderous regime.

So about that NSA watchlist thing? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47535691)

So, according to the NSA watchlist, does that mean the US government and/or persons should be on the terrorist watch list? Oh wait, despite what the court says, who's going to enfore the constitition on the US government?

Re:So about that NSA watchlist thing? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47537695)

So, according to the NSA watchlist, does that mean the US government and/or persons should be on the terrorist watch list? Oh wait, despite what the court says, who's going to enfore the constitition on the US government?

According to Bush "Saddam Insulted my Daddy" and later supported by Obama "The Anti-Christ" the Constitution of the United States of America is a goddamn worthless piece of paper. The Government routinely ignores the Court when the rulings don ot align with the Government's worldview.

we doing it all wrong... (1)

Mr_Nitro (1174707) | about 4 months ago | (#47535725)

with a place like saudi arabia and all the bloody religious fanatic countries the ONLY thing we should export are BOOKS...books and fucking books again. And THEN after everyone damn reads them all and LEARN and understands how things works in a civilized world , we start to talk some actual business.... we are empowering states that if could have their way would bring humanity back to 1000AD... we are doing it thinking that we'll always have the upper hand....but if our side of the gear glitches.. I'lll be glad to see the heads of the military and politicians who enoforced these collaborations roll in the dust....

Re:we doing it all wrong... (1)

shutdown -p now (807394) | about 4 months ago | (#47537409)

with a place like saudi arabia and all the bloody religious fanatic countries the ONLY thing we should export are BOOKS...books and fucking books again. And THEN after everyone damn reads them all and LEARN

What makes you think that Saudi Arabia would permit the kinds of books from which people might learn such things?

Remember how it went? "If these books contradict the Holy Qu'ran, then they are blasphemy - burn them. If these books are in agreement with the Holy Qu'ran, then they are superfluous - burn them."

Betatesting (2)

gmuslera (3436) | about 4 months ago | (#47535953)

When that way to handle "dissidents" comes to your shores, won't be disclosed that it is happening, wannabe whisteblowers will be the first victims.

We Need A Law (1)

Jim Sadler (3430529) | about 4 months ago | (#47536507)

The US government needs a strict law that disallows any aid of any kind or financial contacts with nations that use torture. No imports and no exports and no military or humanitarian aid as well as clauses that disallow work arounds by hiring a third party to deal with these nations. For example if either Israel or Palestine tortures just one person we would be required to hold them in total isolation regardless of any consequences. Nations such as we have seen in S. America that use torture through private contractors or commit crimes against humanity would also suffer severe and long lasting isolation. I mean right down to cutting the phone lines and telling them we will check back with them in 30 years to see if they are ready to associate with real human beings again.

They have oil and they're friends with Bush (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47536635)

So we'll be chummy with them too. We don't make friends based on human rights, we make friends based on greed: money, oil, power.

Saudi Arabia is ISIS (1)

bayankaran (446245) | about 4 months ago | (#47536935)

Saudi Arabia is ISIS, the only difference...Americans think "they are bastards, but they are our bastards".

The US love affair with a totalitarian state? (2)

bradley13 (1118935) | about 4 months ago | (#47537203)

Why does the US government get along so swimmingly well with Saudia Arabia? The place is a human rights disaster. They support, directly or indirectly, various terrorist organizations. It's a lovely place...as long as you are a muslim male. Then you are free to preach strict abstinence and sexual fidelity - ok, sure, you drive over to Bahrain every Thursday to get drunk and get laid - but you make up for this by going home and oppressing your wives and daughters. What's not to like?

Of course, the US support has nothing to do with the fact that there is lots of oil money floating around. Lots of Saudi purchases from US companies, which just happen to have certain politicians on their boards, or which happen to make lots of contributions to campaign funds.

Translation (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47537363)

... "to provide direct analytic and technical support" to the Saudis on "internal security" ...

Translation: Saudi Arabia, the most oppressive industrialized nation, has outsourced torture training and sureveillance... to the USA!

So, we're holding Obama accountable, right? (1)

cascadingstylesheet (140919) | about 4 months ago | (#47537615)

Since this is Obama's NSA, and has been for over a term?

The National Security Agency last year {...}

Must find way to blame on Bush ... getting harder and harder ...

28 Pages that May Implicate Suadi Arabia with 9/11 (2)

mwasham (1208930) | about 4 months ago | (#47537635)

I hope these pages get released soon.. (not holding my breath) http://nypost.com/2013/12/15/i... [nypost.com]

Aerial platforms (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47537767)

A few years ago a senior level well connected Saudi was soliciting geo information system engineering input on what drone or similar type platform could host networked tracking of mobile phones. Lot's of possible applications there, from targeting, surveillance tracking, countermeasures.
I felt at the time I might be playing with the devil. It was clear that there would have had to be some US authorization for this as they would probably need our satellites and co-ordination and integration so as not to be stepping on the toes of each other.

Had we known on 9/12/01 what we know now (1)

Applehu Akbar (2968043) | about 4 months ago | (#47538377)

Instead of invading Iraq and Afghanistan, we would have nuked the Tora Bora fortress and then dismantled Saudi Arabia, doing whatever it might have taken to eliminate the Wahhabi influence on Islam.

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