2013 June 27

“Stellar Wind”: NSA Spied on Americans Illegally from 2001 to 2011


“Stellar Wind” is the code name of a secret National Security Agency (NSA) program that involves data mining of information about U.S. citizens, including telephone conversations, emails, financial transactions, and internet communications. The program was revealed on this day in articles based on NSA documents leaked to the media by former NSA contract employee Edward Snowden (see June 5, 2013, for the first news media stories based on these documents).

Stellar Wind began in 2001 under President George W. Bush, and exposed in part by The New York Times in 2008. Under President Barack Obama, the program evolved into four separate components. Several Justice Department officials had questioned the legality of the program.

Follow a timeline of the Snowden revelations: http://www.theguardian.com/world/2013/jun/23/edward-snowden-nsa-files-timeline

Watch an interview with Snowden: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5yB3n9fu-rM

Get the full story: Luke Harding, The Snowden Files: The Inside Story of the World’s Most Wanted Man (2014)

Read about President Obama’s national security policy: Charlie Savage, Power Wars: Inside Obama’s Post-9/11 Presidency (2015)

Learn more: Dana Priest and William Arkin, Top Secret America: The Rise of the New American Security State (2012)

Search the ACLU data base of Snowden-related NSA documents (searchable by date, relevance, or date of release)https://www.aclu.org/nsa-documents-search?page=1

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