Sunday, April 21, 2024
HomeOpinionsGlobal media looks away as Biden’s NSA “unmasks” dissenting right wing journalist Tucker Carlson

Global media looks away as Biden’s NSA “unmasks” dissenting right wing journalist Tucker Carlson

A few weeks ago, Fox News’ Tucker Carlson, the highest rated news anchor in America and an outspoken critic of President Biden, claimed that the NSA had been monitoring his communications.

Would the most famously liberal government in the world spy on dissenting journalists? Never. With no such possibility at home, the New York Times, the Washington Post and their fellow travelers in global media have embarked on a campaign to save the (rest of the) world. Among their targets for regime change is India’s Modi. And so the global media elite, with their parrots in India, have spent much of last week dreaming up sinister stories of Modi government spying on journalists, ministers, judges, Twitter trolls and anyone who takes themselves too seriously.

Obviously, I’m being sarcastic. You might be wondering by now. Did the Biden administration spy on dissenting journalists? Why is there no media storm about this? Liberal privilege?

Well, not exactly. Biden’s National Security Agency was just “unmasking” a right wing journalist. What does that mean, precisely? I don’t know. Nobody does. It’s a technical term used by the intelligence community. See if this helps:

the nation’s top electronic spy agency found that Carlson was mentioned in communications between third parties and his name was subsequently revealed through “unmasking,” a process in which relevant government officials can request the identities of American citizens in intelligence reports to be divulged provided there is an official reason, such as helping them make sense of the intelligence documents they are reviewing.

In case you didn’t notice, that was not a paragraph. It was one single sentence, sixty-three words long. Because words like “spying” and “snooping” are for third world countries only. Rich countries with liberal governments need long sentences.

Here is the sequence of events. A few weeks ago, Fox News’ Tucker Carlson, the highest rated news anchor in America and an outspoken critic of President Biden, claimed that the NSA had been monitoring his communications. At this, the NSA released the following statement.

On June 28, 2021, Tucker Carlson alleged that the National Security Agency has been "monitoring our electronic communications and is planning to leak them in an attempt to take this show off the air."  This allegation is untrue. Tucker Carlson has never been an intelligence target of the Agency and the NSA has never had any plans to try to take his program off the air.  NSA has a foreign intelligence mission. We target foreign powers to generate insights on foreign activities that could harm the United States.  With limited exceptions (e.g. an emergency), NSA may not target a US citizen without a court order that explicitly authorizes the targeting.

It may seem like the NSA is dismissing the charges, but observe how carefully they word the sentence. “This allegation is untrue,” they say. But which allegation? Notice how the NSA quotes Tucker in an attempt to take advantage of his compound sentence. They deny that the NSA is monitoring him in an attempt to take his show off the air! Which part is the NSA denying, then? The monitoring part or the part about intent to take his show off air? They don’t say.

In the second paragraph, the NSA says they are not targeting Tucker Carlson. And presumably, they are not eating half his lunch nor taking a sip of his coffee each day. Are they monitoring him, perhaps as part of an operation that targets someone else? The NSA doesn’t say.

As Axios put it here:

Axios tried to ask more specific questions, but the NSA declined to comment. Very reassuring. And now comes this source based report.

Again, the headline would make the NSA very happy. And discourage the casual reader from reading the full article. That way you would never find the 63 word long sentence buried deep within it.

So, what really happened? Axios broke it down into several possible scenarios.

In their most likely scenario, Carlson’s communications would get picked up as he was reaching out to Putin for an interview. However, Axios also explains that in this scenario, Tucker’s identity would remain masked because he is a US citizen. An exception applies only if the identity needs to be “unmasked” in order to understand that intelligence.

So, why would someone need to unmask the identity of a reporter seeking an interview with Putin? Axios explains further:

But under this scenario, too, Carlson’s identity would have been masked in reports as part of his protections as a U.S. citizen, and unmasking would only be permitted if a U.S. government official requested that his identity be unmasked in order to understand the intelligence. And it’s not clear why that would be necessary here.

Not clear why that would be necessary here. Yes, when it comes to issues of privacy, it is always better when things are not clear.

That’s why the American media isn’t interested. The good folks at the New York Times and the Washington Post have decided to focus their energies elsewhere, preferably in India, where they can do so much good.

One final note. Yesterday, President Biden shut down the federal investigation into the thousands of nursing home Covid deaths covered up by Andrew Cuomo, the liberal governor of New York. Along with Cuomo, Biden’s other party colleagues, such as the liberal governors of Michigan and Pennsylvania, have also received a clean chit. The New York Times has not covered the story yet. They are busy looking for unreported Covid deaths in rural Uttar Pradesh and Bihar. We are ever so grateful for the way global media “speaks truth to power.”

Ayodhra Ram Mandir special coverage by OpIndia

  Support Us  

Whether NDTV or 'The Wire', they never have to worry about funds. In name of saving democracy, they get money from various sources. We need your support to fight them. Please contribute whatever you can afford

Abhishek Banerjee
Abhishek Banerjee
Abhishek Banerjee is a columnist and author.  

Related Articles

Trending now

Recently Popular

- Advertisement -

Connect with us