Former NSA Agent Speaks
Check out today's Democracy Now interview with former NSA intelligence agent Russell Tice, a Republican who voted for Bush in both elections:
AMY GOODMAN: What made you decide to come forward? You worked for the top-secret agency of this government, one that is far larger and even more secret than the C.I.A.
RUSSELL TICE: Well, the main reason is, you know, I'm involved with some certain aspects of the intelligence community, which are very closely held, and I believe I have seen some things that are illegal. Ultimately it's Congress's responsibility to conduct oversight in these things. I don't see it happening. Another reason is there was a certain roadblock that was sort of lifted that allowed me to do this, and I can't explain, but I will to Congress if allowed to.
AMY GOODMAN: Can you talk about the letter you have written to Congress, your request to testify?
RUSSELL TICE: Well, it's just a simple request under the Intelligence Community Whistleblower Protection Act, which is a legal means to contact Congress and tell them that you believe that something has gone wrong in the intelligence community.
AMY GOODMAN: Russell Tice, you have worked for the National Security Agency. Can you talk about your response to the revelations that the Times, you know, revealed in -- perhaps late, knowing the story well before the election, yet revealing it a few weeks ago -- the revelation of the wiretapping of American citizens?
RUSSELL TICE: Well, as far as an intelligence officer, especially a SIGINT officer at N.S.A., we're taught from very early on in our careers that you just do not do this. This is probably the number one commandment of the SIGINT Ten Commandments as a SIGINT officer. You will not spy on Americans. It is drilled into our head over and over and over again in security briefings, at least twice a year, where you ultimately have to sign a paper that says you have gotten the briefing. Everyone at N.S.A. who's a SIGINT officer knows that you do not do this. Ultimately, so do the leaders of N.S.A., and apparently the leaders of N.S.A. have decided that they were just going to go against the tenets of something that's a gospel to a SIGINT officer.
Tice is awaiting a reply to the letter he sent Congress on December 18.