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Archive for May 22nd, 2008

Secretive Canadian spy agency to get $62-million HQ

Thursday, May 22nd, 2008

Stewart Bell, National Post
Thursday, May 22, 2008

TORONTO — The Canadian government is spending $62-million on a new building for the country’s ultra-secret electronic spy agency, the National Post has learned.

The Communications Security Establishment facility will be located in Ottawa. Defence Minister Peter MacKay is expected to make the announcement later today.

The CSE is the most secretive branch of Canada’s intelligence community. It operates an electronic eavesdropping system that collects “signals intelligence,” or SIGINT.

From its headquarters in south Ottawa, the CSE intercepts, decodes, translates and analyzes the phone calls, e-mails and other electronic communications of Canada’s adversaries. It also safeguards government computer systems.

Although the CSE works under strict secrecy, signals teams are known to have played a role in the March 23, 2006 rescue of one British and two Canadian hostages in Iraq. The agency has also been listening in on Taliban communications exchanges in Afghanistan.

But the agency’s work goes mostly unnoticed.

The agency has been rapidly expanding since gaining new powers following the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001. The new 6,000-square-metre building will house 250 employees.

The CSE was once so secret the government would not even acknowledge its existence. The agency was not even listed in government phone books. But it has been slowly coming out of the shadows to explain what it does.

The agency began after the Second World War when Ottawa merged two of its intelligence units to form what was then called the Communications Branch of the National Research Council. Its focus was the Soviet Bloc military.

In 1975 it was renamed the CSE and placed under the wing of the armed forces. Then came the end of the Cold War, 9/11, and suddenly terrorism became Canada’s number one national security threat.

At the time of the Sept. 11 attacks, the CSE was not allowed to listen in on any talk that originated or terminated in Canada. That changed in December, 2001, when Parliament passed the Anti-Terrorism Act, which allowed the CSE to listen in on foreign intelligence targets even if those communications had one foot in Canada.

“I think it’s fair to say that the focus now is very much concentrated on anti-terrorism,” CSE spokesman Adrian Simpson said in a 2006 interview. “Up until the end of the Cold War there was one steady target and all of the intelligence agencies were focused on that, and 9/11 just changed everything and we and our partner organizations had to focus on the new reality.”

Civil liberty advocates are concerned about the expansion of the CSE’s powers and argue the agency needs closer scrutiny to make sure innocent people are not targeted.

Building contracts for the facility are to be tendered later this spring. Construction is to be completed by 2011.

Full Story | See Also: | Whistle-Blower: Feds Have a Backdoor Into Wireless Carrier – Congress Reacts | Canadians who trust our secret police should think again | Listening in on the enemy: Canada’s master eavesdroppers

Dutch Embassy Deep-Sixes Bilderberg Information

Thursday, May 22nd, 2008

Paul Joseph Watson,
Thursday, May 22, 2008

Debunkers love to claim that the Bilderberg Group is a mere talking shop and has no influence over world events, but it appears as if the secretive organization had some sway in ordering the Dutch Embassy to remove information about where they would be meeting this year from their official website.

Of course the cat is already out of the bag – the alternative media cracked the real scene of the crime this time around – Chantilly, Virginia – after it appeared Bilderberg had pulled a fast one by having Greek newspapers report that they had already met in Athens.

Despite the open knowledge that Bilderberg, which this year will welcome Dutch Prime Minister Jan Peter Balkenende, will meet from June 5-8 at the Westfields Marriott hotel, they were seemingly uncomfortable with that information being broadcast by the Dutch Embassy, who have now deep-sixed any mention of it.

In their original press release – cached here – the statement reads, “The Prime Minister will participate in the annual Bilderberg conference, which this year will be held in Chantilly, VA.”

Original version with Bilderberg information included.

The edited version which is currently posted omits any mention of Bilderberg.

Edited version with Bilderberg information memory-holed.

One can speculate in assuming that the reason behind the removal of the information was to discourage mainstream media attention towards the meeting. Perhaps Bilderberg were hoping that the U.S. corporate press’ obsession with American Idol or the Obama/Clinton circus might have helped the unveiling of this year’s location to go unnoticed.

The U.S. corporate media is notorious for being the most blinkered when it comes to Bilderberg coverage, self-censoring every time the group meets in the states. You can count on one hand the number of mainstream news outlets that report on the conference – a damning indictment of the “free press” in light of the fact that over 100 power brokers are meeting in secret to plot the course of our future.

As we previously reported, there was speculation that the Dutch Embassy deliberately published the information in the first place because they were nonplussed about Bilderberg’s obsession with secrecy, but if this was the case then someone at Bilderberg cracked the whip and the Embassy duly complied.

Bilderberg sleuth Jim Tucker got direct confirmation over the phone from the Dutch Embassy a few days ago that Bilderberg would be meeting at the Westfields Marriott – so whereas before they were happy to provide the information, now it appears they have been told in no uncertain terms to keep it under wraps.

Full Story | See Also: Complete Media Lockdown On Athens Bilderberg Meeting? | Bilderberg: The ultimate conspiracy theory | Shadowy group meets amid secrecy in Ottawa | Steven Harper and the Bilderbergers Secret Meeting