When Fox News Contributor Judge Andrew Napolitano stated that, “He [Obama] used GCHQ . . . the initials for the British spying agency . . . they have 24 hour access to the NSA database . . . and there’s no American fingerprints” he ended up being sidelined by his corporate bosses.
Napolitano was referring to FISA in the interview on Fox & Friends, however, what he really meant was an agreement known as “Project ECHELON.”
When the Judge was just a 21 year-old, a government project named ECHELON, was formerly established.
ECHELON is a spying agreement between Australia, Canada, New Zealand, the United Kingdom and the United States.
The 46 year-old program allows nations that cannot spy on their own people and companies, per their own laws and constitutions to, well . . . spy on their own people and companies.
While the United States government cannot legally spy on citizens without cause and procedure, Australia, Canada, etc., can spy on Americans without any laws stopping them.
In turn, the United States can spy on all of the other nations.
When any of those nations, known as the FIVE, need information on their own people, they simply “share” data.
Project ECHELON, which was investigated by the European Parliament in 2000, and finally acknowledge in 2015 with the release of information by Edward Snowden.
The massive, worldwide spying program is not that big of a secret. Heck, even Hollywood made a movie loosely based on it . . . and even named the film the “Echelon Conspiracy.”
According to the Snowden documents, the program is run through “intercept stations” around the world managed by the NSA, CIA, Air Force, GCHQ (Britain), GCSB (New Zealand), ASD (Australia), and BND (German). As with many other international agreements, Canada doesn’t pull its own weight and does not operate an intercept station.
Germany, while not a member of the original “FIVE” operates an intercept station in Munich with the NSA as support.
Of the 16 known intercept stations, 11 have an NSA presence.
While Andrew Napolitano may have seemed like a conspiracy theorist to Fox News executives when he brought up the possibility that Donald Trump was spied on by the UK, in reality, those executives are simply ignorant of the history and depth of spying by our own government . . . and others.
Of course the UK would respond with “outrageous” when accused of spying on a presidential candidate at the request of a sitting United States President.
Their response is no different in force when the UK was investigating ECHELON in 2001. European investigators flew into the United States to meet with officials with the CIA and NSA.
When it was revealed that the purpose of the meetings were to discuss Project ECHELON, the meetings were cancelled and the delegation was forced to fly home.
Sixteen years later, the program rolls on, but if you dare talk about it like Judge Napolitano did, you may be out of a job.