NSA Chief Wants There To Be a Way To Stop Reporters "Selling" Secrets

Credit: National Security Agency (NSA)/wikimediaCredit: National Security Agency (NSA)/wikimediaNSA Director Gen. Keith Alexander said during an interview with the Defense Department’s “Armed With Science” blog that he wants there to be a way stop reporters “selling” intelligence secrets.

Before making the comment on selling secrets, Gen. Alexander outlined his concern:

My concern is the revealing of these programs allow terrorists to know the best weapons that we have against them. It will cause irreversible and significant damage, and it means that terrorists now have an upper edge in conducting attacks probably in Europe and potentially in the United States, and our ability to stop them is reduced. And so when people die those that are responsible for leaking it are the ones that should be held accountable.

Later, Gen. Alexander says that “We ought to come up with a way of stopping” reporters selling documents:

I think it’s wrong that newspaper reporters have all these documents, 50,000 or whatever they have, and are selling them and giving them out as if these...you know it just doesn't make sense. We ought to come up with a way of stopping it. I don’t know how to do that, that’s more of the courts and the policy makers, but from my perspective it’s wrong, and to allow this to go on is wrong.

Watch the interview below:

More from Reason.com on the NSA here

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  • SIV||

    Oathbreakers

  • Swiss Servator, Yodelriffic!||

    General, sir...? *Ahem*

    Fuck off, slaver.

    v/r

    LTC(ret) Swiss Servator

  • sloopyinca||

    Col John, what it the opinion of most retired military on what the NSA is doing to spy on Americans? How do they mostly feel about the military being used as a tool of the admin to spy on Americans? Amd lastly, what is the retired military's opinion on how we are waging our "war on terror" by and large?

  • Swiss Servator, Yodelriffic!||

    Those I know bitterly joke about the spying or pass around their stories of the NSA (mine was when we painstakingly cleared a large amount of mined area on a base in AF, only to have the NSA come in and say 'thanks, its ours now, for an antenna farm')
    Opinion is a bit mixed on the WoT. Our enemies in it deserve nothing but death and an afterlife being raped by barbed penis wielding hellhounds - but the AF mission is starting to get more "gosh, thanks Adjmal, for joining the Afghan National Police so you can start shooting at us! F' em, they can do this on their own".
    I am just afraid the people we (over)promised to help will all end up dead or will have to flee the country when we pack up and leave. Another bitter lesson in relying on Uncle Sucker's promises - see also Hmongs, et al.

  • sloopyinca||

    Thanks, John. I understand where you're coming from on all three. And yes, our enemies deserve a horrible death. But I wonder how many of the people we're currently killing would be our enemies if we left them alone. I also wonder how many of them have the means to even threaten us in a tangible way. I think that number is very, very small and the people we're currently killing are not in that group.

  • Cdr Lytton||

    Like these guys in Portland earlier this year? Full story here.

  • optimusratiostultum||

    the number of people who could hurt us would be a hell of a lot less if we did some sensible things like cut off all ties to the arab world (we don't need their oil anymore) but that wouldn't be pc, "discriminating" against them

  • gaijin||

    an afterlife being raped barbed penis wielding hellhounds

    Excellent!

  • 0x90||

    Really, there ought to be a way of stopping everything we don't like. And of not stopping everything we like. Is that too much to ask?

  • Austrian Anarchy||

    The General can start by stopping the people he is in charge of from giving stuff to journalists to begin with.

  • Tim||

    This is why Generals don't get to be in charge of civilians.

  • Scruffy Nerfherder||

    My few dealings with retired brass above the rank of Colonel has exposed most of them to be assholes. There's something about absolute power over those below you in rank that corrupts, especially when that power was obtained by making yourself completely subservient to those higher in the system.

  • Killazontherun||

    Everyone above a certain rank got there by being a politician angling for it.

  • AlexInCT||

    That's because when they reach those top ranks they are just as corrupt as the political class, whose ass they have to kiss to get the rank.

    The problem isn't the military, but the civilian masters that abuse the capabilities of the military and the leadership in the military that goes along because it gets them promoted.

  • Austrian Anarchy||

    They are in charge of GS 15s and others all the time.

  • Scruffy Nerfherder||

    If a reporter has it, it's not secret anymore, you moron.

  • James Anderson Merritt||

    You mean that the government has no reasonable expectations of privacy in this case? Who woulda thunk it?

  • Jose Chung||

    " it means that terrorists now have an upper edge in conducting attacks probably in Europe and potentially in the United States"

    Ummm... why is it our responsibility to prevent terrorist attacks in the EU?

  • Scruffy Nerfherder||

    It's ALWAYS our responsibility.

  • Austrian Anarchy||

    Ever since Wilson or so.

  • AlexInCT||

    You hate the childruns!

  • PD Scott||

    They grow up to become terrorists, you fool!

  • R C Dean||

    Well, since they have the upper hand now, we can expect a wave of successful attacks, right?

  • gaijin||

    It will cause irreversible and significant damage, and it means that terrorists now have an upper edge in conducting attacks probably in Europe and potentially in the United States, and our ability to stop them is reduced.

    All true because he says so? The man who was in charge of 10000 spies and yet was "surprised by 9-11". The man who was in command of the units that tortured people at Abu Ghraib. The man who lied to congress about what the NSA was doing. Yeah, that's a guy we should all listen to...when he's asking a court to show mercy before sentencing him.

  • Death Rock and Skull||

    "Your guilt has already been determined. This is merely a sentencing hearing."

  • Raston Bot||

    shouldn't this clown be off perjuring himself in front of a body of elected officials somewhere?

  • Tim||

    He knows their secrets. Hell, he knows their wives secrets and and he has their daughters sexting photos. Nobody is gonna mess with him.

  • Ken Shultz||

    I think that NSA Director Gen. Keith Alexander is a traitor to the Constitution.

    In a better world, he'd have been the one hiding out in a Russian airport, begging for Putin to grant him asylum.

  • Death Rock and Skull||

    If you do not want other people to know information that you know, do not ever record it on any media, and do not ever tell any other person what you know.

    Information that other people have is no longer yours.

  • Scruffy Nerfherder||

    I think the NSA might have copyrighted it.

  • gaijin||

    haha. They should sue Snowden and the Guardian for copyright infringement.

  • Wizard4169||

    "Three men may keep a secret, if two of them are dead."

  • The Late P Brooks||

    Is there anybody in this government who isn't a moron?

  • Tim||

    There was the guy who tried to mow the Lincoln Memorial during the shutdown.

  • R C Dean||

    I thought he wasn't a government employee.

    http://articles.washingtonpost.....al-citizen

  • tarran||

    Yeah, the Assholes.

  • gaijin||

    "I'm surrounded by assholes!" I love that movie.

  • AlexInCT||

    That was a rhetorical question, right?

    What did I win?

  • Ken Shultz||

    "I think it’s wrong that newspaper reporters have all these documents, 50,000 or whatever they have, and are selling them and giving them out as if these...you know it just doesn't make sense. We ought to come up with a way of stopping it. I don’t know how to do that, that’s more of the courts and the policy makers."

    ----NSA Director Gen. Keith Alexander

    Translation:

    I don't know how you get around the First Amendment, that's for Congress and the courts to figure out--just like they did with the Fourth Amendment. I mean, if the Constitution is such a big obstacle, then why am I sitting here? At the NSA, we violate the Constitution a million times a day!

  • sloopyinca||

    A million? Oh, I think it's a lot more than that. Probably more like a billion..

  • Death Rock and Skull||

    What the fuck? Hey, look at that thing's teeth.

  • Andrew S.||

    Corrupt, Drunk (on power) and Stupid is no way to go through life, son General.

  • mr simple||

    My concern is the revealing of these programs allow terrorists to know the best weapons that we have against them. It will cause irreversible and significant damage, and it means that terrorists now have an upper edge in conducting attacks probably in Europe and potentially in the United States, and our ability to stop them is reduced.

    So these "weapons" are only good for a single use? Then other people know about them and they lose all efficacy? That doesn't sound like a good business model.

  • Tonio||

    These days any electronic communication is subject to interception by NSA and similar agencies. That's not a big secret or anything. That's also a deterrent. If they have to use paper messages delivered by couriers it slows them down, and those messages are still subject to interception and substitution.

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    I keep sayin' there oughta be a law.

  • ||

    "We ought to come up with a way of stopping it. I don’t know how to do that, that’s more of the courts and the policy makers, but from my perspective it’s wrong, and to allow this to go on is wrong."

    What an asshole.

  • Aloysious||

    I'm really, and this time I mean it, really starting to dislike the Nosy Security Agency.

  • sloopyinca||

    One day, people like this General will be leading the hangings of people like us. Or we will be leading the hangings of people like him. I honestly do not know which it will be, but I am all but certain we have reached a tipping point where it's one or the other.

  • Raston Bot||

    Probably first us, then them.

  • sloopyinca||

  • ||

    terrorists now have an upper edge

    Upper hand.

    What's wrong with a lower edge, anyway?

  • Hugh Akston||

    Birds who nest on the lower edge get shat on by the birds in the upper edge.

  • DEATFBIRSECIA||

    He needs to shut up and go back to shooting krokodil into his gums.

  • John C. Randolph||

    That greasy little spook belongs behind bars.

    -jcr

  • sloopyinca||

    I was always taught that traitors deserved a bullet in the head.

  • KDN||

    greasy little spook

    RAAAAAAACIIIIIIST

  • Habeas Dorkus||

    " ... terrorists now have an upper edge ..."

    Fucking mixed-metaphor-dropping little bureaucratic fuck-puke.
    It's "upper hand" or "edge."
    Choose one, you faggot.

  • Homple||

    If General Alexander showed up in front of George Patton looking like he does in that picture, Patton would slap his face off.

  • Christophe||

    Hopefully someone shoots the fucker before he gets to retire.

  • plusafdotcom||

    Hey, General, a friend of mine just told me a "very funny" story...

    Riding a commuter train between New England and NYC one day, she overheard some Colonel chatting on his cell phone. Loud enough to hear his side of the conversation quite clearly.

    Our friend realized that, while the Colonel wasn't blabbing any Secret Level info, he was saying some things which REALLY didn't belong "in the air" in a commuter train where "just anyone" could overhear.

    Yep, just a few minutes after he ended the call, he GOT a call and made apologetic noises into his phone.

    Thanks, NSA, you just reminded a moron to STFU in public! Amazing!

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