Former National Security Agency analyst Russell Tice says the US government has used satellites to spy on Americans, collecting the exact contents of every digital communication in the country.
“The United States were, at that time, using satellites to spy on American citizens. At that time, it was news organizations, the State Department, including Colin Powell, and an awful lot of senior military people and industrial types,” he said in an interview with PBS.
“This was in 2002-2003 time frame. The NSA were targeting individuals. In that case, they were judges like the Supreme Court. I held in my hand Judge Alito's targeting information for his phones and his staff and his family,” Tice added.
Tice, who worked as an analyst of the agency for two decades, also noted that he was fired in 2005 after asking Congress to provide greater protection to whistleblowers.
He also explained about his recent communication with his colleagues at the NSA.
“Two months ago, I contacted some colleagues at NSA. We had a little meeting, and the question came up, was NSA collecting everything now? Because we kind of figured that was the goal all along. And the answer came back. It was, yes, they are collecting everything, contents word for word, everything of every domestic communication in this country,” Tice said.
Edward Snowden for the first time revealed the US agency’s massive spying programs.
Snowden leaked to the news media details of two top-secret US government spying programs - one that collects massive amounts of information on phone calls made by Americans and the other, codenamed PRISM, sweeps up data on US citizens and other nationals via the Internet. He also revealed that the US spies on its European and Latin American allies.
The American whistleblower has been given asylum for one year by the Russian government.