10:38 GMT26 May 2020
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    The Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISC) ruling revealed this week to permit a secret National Security Agency (NSA) operation was a step nearer an authoritarian state, experts told Sputnik.

    WASHINGTON (Sputnik) – Tuesday’s FISC ruling was its first since the passage of the USA Freedom Act, but most of the court order was redacted, did not reveal the identities of any telecom providers the NSA is working with nor whom the agency is targeting, according to published reports.

    “The Court's order and the redaction of its content is part and parcel of the lockstep movement of the United States into an authoritarian society,” California State University Professor of Political Science Beau Grosscup told Sputnik.

    The US government and federal agencies continued to use the threat of terrorism to justify an unending assault on remaining civil liberties, Grosscup, a terrorism expert and author, warned.

    “In the name of fighting terrorism at home and abroad, the National Security State bureaucracies purposely and stridently overwhelm what is left of the democratic process and civil liberties,” he observed.

    The American public was so preoccupied with petty issues dominating the mass media that most of them had shown no interest in what was going on, Grosscup stated.

    “In this new militarized authoritarian neo-liberal landscape, the vast majority of citizens are distracted by consumerism, encouraged to develop their own brand and take selfies,” he said.

    However, behind the hedonist and materialist values and images cultivated by the media, ordinary Americans experienced a very different and darker reality, Grosscup maintained.

    “They are treated as terrorist suspects, fear mongered at every opportunity and seen as disposable hostages in service to the US war machine, backed by a compliant corporate media and increasingly privatized state institutions,’ he pointed out.

    Former US diplomat and former adviser to Republicans in the US Senate Jim Jatras agreed, telling Sputnik that the US National Security State or “Deep State” continued to make inroads into American civil liberties behind the mask of reassuring legislation and institutions like the FISC.

    “The US establishment is entirely controlled by the neoconservatives in the GOP and liberal interventionists in the Democratic party. They have no other way of looking at the world except through an ideological lens, through which the United States is the only authoritative, fully sovereign power,” he explained.

    Even famous and leading political figures in the United States served as little more than public front-men and front-women for the security services and other institutions, Jatras argued.

    “The Bush and Clinton families are simply the leading masks of the Deep State. They no more control it than the families of the leading officials of the Brezhnev era controlled the Soviet nomenklatura, the Deep State has many water-carriers who will do its bidding,” he said.

    However, the widespread public support for the political insurgencies of Donald Trump and Senator Bernie Sanders in the Republican and Democratic parties showed that while the old “Deep State” establishment was still in charge, it also faced new rising domestic threats, he said.

    The views and opinions expressed in the article do not necessarily reflect those of Sputnik.


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    surveillance, Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISC), National Security Agency (NSA), United States
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