From 9/11 to Mass Surveillance, The Man Who Knew Too Much – Thomas Drake on RAI (1/5)

From 9/11 to Mass Surveillance, The Man Who Knew Too Much – Thomas Drake on RAI (1/5)


PAUL JAY: Welcome to Reality Asserts Itself
on The Real News Network. I’m Paul Jay. The man who knew too much–that’s Thomas Drake.
Thomas Drake was in the Air Force, he was in the NSA, and, for many years, in and out
of various parts of the American national security state, both in public service and
in the private sector. I say the man who knew too much, but he’s also the man who saw and
spoke. Internally to begin with, he raised objections to the NSA having knowledge about
9/11 and not making use of that knowledge to prevent 9/11. He went public eventually,
but first anonymously, on a mass surveillance program that he thought violated the Fourth
Amendment. He went public eventually, but first within all due internal process, on
what he thought was a waste of multibillion-dollar program that had been created for mass surveillance.
So not only did it violate the Fourth Amendment; it also was a big boondoggle. The man who knew too much now joins us in
this studio. Thanks for joining us, Thomas. THOMAS DRAKE: Thanks for having me. JAY: So, just quickly, Thomas is a former
senior executive at the U.S. National Security Agency. He’s a decorated United States Air
Force and United States Navy veteran. And as I said, he’s a whistleblower. He’s a whistleblower
who was indicted–didn’t go to jail, but you came pretty close. First of all, in Reality Asserts Itself, as
most of our viewers know, I usually start with a personal back story. We’re going to
get there, but we’re not going to quite start there. For people who don’t know your case, kind
of just quickly, why did they go after you? DRAKE: They went after me because I knew too
much about several things, and I shared it within channels, and ultimately went to the
press anonymously, and over the course of a number of years. But I was confronted by
the dark side shortly after 9/11. So the first thing was the secret surveillance
programs that were put into place as a result of 9/11 and unleashed on the Petri dish called
the United States of America, turning the United States of America into the equivalent
of a foreign nation for dragnet electronic surveillance. To this day, we still don’t
know the full extent of that. JAY: And we’re going to dig into all this. DRAKE: Yeah. And then there was also the 9/11
knowledge, what NSA actually knew, what they should have known, what they didn’t share,
what they kept hidden, and information that they never even discovered until later. JAY: But you have said that if it had been
acted on, it might have been able–that information might have led to preventing the 9/11 events. DRAKE: Well, I consider NSA quite culpable.
In fact–well, we’ll get into the detail as to why, but extraordinarily culpable. And
they’ve been covering up their culpability ever since. What happened is I ended up speaking truth
to power, starting with NSA, and they didn’t like that. And I ultimately became a material
witness in several government investigations, including two 9/11 congressional investigations,
a Department of Defense Office of the Inspector General audit and investigation. And the long
story short, after significant reprisal and retaliation, the New York Times article comes
out in December 2005 revealing for the first time publicly the existence of the so-called
terrorist surveillance program–it was not known as that. It was a convenient cover.
That caused a huge stir at NSA and within the Department of Justice. They referred it
to the Department of Justice for criminal investigation, and I was put on a target list
shortly thereafter. JAY: And you’re eventually–. DRAKE: And I ended up being summarily visited
by the FBI in November 2007 when they raided me, raided my house, and raided my office
down at the National Defense University. And then, long story short, in April 2010 I was
very publicly indicted on a ten felony count indictment, five under the Espionage Act,
facing 35 years in prison. Fortunately, I’m sitting in front of you as a free human being.
I never did it end up in prison, never did end up paying a fine. JAY: Okay. And we’re going to get to that
story. We were chatting quite a bit off-camera before
we started the interview, and you repeated several times the phrase that you feel burdened
by history. What do you mean? DRAKE: I’m extraordinarily burdened by history.
It’s the what ifs, it’s the dirty knowledge I had about secret surveillance, it’s the
dirty knowledge about critical intelligence that NSA actually had prior to 9/11 that was
not shared properly with national command authorities, as we call them. They could have
stopped 9/11 all by itself, just from the NSA intelligence, never mind CIA or FBI. It
was a systemic failure. I’m burdened by the massive multibillion-dollar
fraud on an extraordinary scale, that the response to the failure of the government
to provide for the common defense was let’s just spend a lot more money ’cause we’re too
big to fail. I’m burdened by the mass surveillance regime that was put into place in the deepest
of secrecy. All of this I’m burdened by. And it’s going on 14 years now. I looked into
the Pandora’s box, and it was very, very dark. And the abyss looked back at me. JAY: And burdened because of what you had
believed before you had looked into the box and what this did to your vision of what America
was? DRAKE: Well, no. My eyes were wide open coming
into NSA. Some people have this idea that somehow I was naive coming into NSA. In fact,
I was actually–my sanity was questioned as to whether or not I really wanted to join
NSA. JAY: And your first day of the NSA is actually
9/11. DRAKE: First day I reported. I actually took
the oath prior. It was all in processing. But the first day that I reported to my new
job was the morning of 9/11. JAY: So if you weren’t naive, why’d you join? DRAKE: It was an opportunity to serve my country
again at a very senior-level. And I’d answered an ad in the paper in February 2001. They
were looking for outsiders. NSA had been placed under lots of attention, and they were clearly
having difficulty keeping up with the digital age, and they were severely challenged in
a post-Cold War environment. And here they were, almost ten years on, and they hired
in about a dozen people. Their key stakeholder, Congress, particularly the intelligence committees,
had been taking NSA to task for some years. And so they very reluctantly–it was general
Michael B. Hayden–brought in about a dozen of us. JAY: So, again, why the word burden? I mean,
if you say your eyes were wide open when you join–. DRAKE: It’s burdened by what happened after
I joined. I mean, I never quite imagined that the period in which I grew up as a very young
teenager in the 1970s, that I would end up not only revisiting, but I would be reliving
it on a far vaster scale in terms of government criminal wrongdoing, crimes, you know, high
crimes and misdemeanors as defined by the Constitution. JAY: Reliving it meaning Nixon. DRAKE: Reliving the Nixon era, reliving the
Watergate and then some. It makes the Nixon era look like pikers, what happened in 9/11,
in terms of the government simply unchaining itself from the rule of law and operating
under extraordinary emergency conditions, the equivalent of martial law in the country,
but in secret. Virtual martial law is actually what was instituted in the United States of
America, truth be told. JAY: Again, why do you feel personally burdened
by that? ‘Cause you were a part of it? DRAKE: Because I would not remain silent.
And I spent many, many years defending the Constitution against my own government. And
I came up short. I was unable–and with others. It wasn’t just me; it was many others as well
who raised serious questions about what we were doing. But I’ve confronted all this early,
early on; within days and weeks of 9/11, I was confronted by the specter of Pandora’s
box opened up. JAY: For example? DRAKE: Well, I found out within days that
an oral decision, I mean, oral authority had been given by–verbal authority, verbal authority
from the White House, authorizing NSA to start spying on the U.S. on an extraordinary scale,
starting with phone numbers and special arrangements of certain telephone companies, starting with
AT&T. And I remember–I mean, we may get into more details on this, but I confronted the
lead attorney. JAY: Within days of 9/11. DRAKE: Within days, a verbal authorization
was granted NSA. JAY: Is that possible that that decision can
be made so quickly and not had been thought about before 9/11? DRAKE: Yes. As one of the attorneys that I
confronted told me, you don’t understand, Mr. Drake. We live in exigent conditions.
All means necessary apply. And I said, including breaking the law and the–. You don’t understand. JAY: Do you think there was some kind of plan
in place prior to 9/11 for such a thing? DRAKE: I wouldn’t say a plan. I think Cheney
was looking for an excuse to reestablish, reassert the imperial presidency. He always
thought that Nixon had gotten a raw deal in terms of history, and here was his moment.
He was ascendant. You know, he was a shadow president. He was–been handed the national
security portfolio by Bush. Nine/eleven was a convenient crisis in which to implement
unitary executive authority. I’ll just say it that way. JAY: And we’re going to get into a whole segment
about 9/11 and how this crisis comes to be. DRAKE: So you’re staring into the Pandora’s
box. What do you do? I mean, I’m not the one who made the decisions, but I now have the
dirty knowledge. So I decided that I could not remain silent. If I remained silent, I’d
be an accessory to a crime. I was eyewitness to the subversion of the Constitution. I took
an oath to that Constitution, and I was going to hold true faith and allegiance to the same.
I didn’t take an oath to the president. I didn’t take an oath to secrecy. I didn’t take
an oath to anything else other than defending and supporting the Constitution against all
enemies, foreign and domestic. JAY: Well, why didn’t you buy the narrative
that this was an extraordinary moment, America was under attack? DRAKE: ‘Cause we had failed the nation, under
the preamble of the Constitution: we had not provided for the common defense. But instead
of actually acknowledging that failure, NSA and others took it as a huge opportunity.
And as Rahm Emanuel so famously said, never let a good crisis go to waste. And clearly
they were not going to let this crisis go to waste. But there’s dark history here. None of this
should have happened. And I’m eyewitness to a number of events that took place prior to
9/11 in which the alarm bells had been going off for many, many years. JAY: For example? DRAKE: Including my own experience as a reserve
intel officer in the Navy down at the Pentagon. JAY: Start there. DRAKE: Well, I was on the terrorism desk for
18 months. I was there when they tried to drop the–. JAY: What year are we in? DRAKE: Hm? JAY: What year? DRAKE: That was the ’93-94 timeframe. I was
there when they tried to drop the World Trade Center towers the first time, with truck bombs.
And I was–we were sending out reports. And I remember the senior intelligence officer,
right, the J2, who reports to the Joint Chiefs of Staff, coming down to the alert center,
the National Military Joint Intelligence Center, saying, yeah, I’m seeing all the reports,
but who cares, right, about some, you know, raghead in the desert? Literally said that.
Who cares? Not understanding in ’93 how serious they were about sending a message. We knew then that they wanted to demonstrate
their–let’s just say their beef with the West by attacking Western landmarks. We sent
out reports then that they’re going to come back. And they came back. Okay? This is part
of the burden, this burden that we just failed the nation, we–not only were 3,000 people
murdered; hundreds of foreigners were murdered that day as well on 9/11. That all burdens
me. Okay? ‘Cause it’s the what if for me. What if the critical intelligence had been
shared? What if? I realize 9/11 happened, but for me it’s life before 9/11, and there’s
life after 9/11. And what I saw happen after 9/11 in the deepest of–the bowels of NSA,
right, I shudder when I even go back and replay all that. You don’t witness your own government subverting
the Constitution right out from under you–no consent of the governed, no conversation,
no discussion, no debate–without knowing that it’s fraught with enormous strategic
peril, that it would have enormous consequences downstream. I knew all that then. I just couldn’t
turn aside. I had to speak up and I had to defend the Constitution, this piece of paper
that if it doesn’t mean something, then what matters in terms of our form of governance,
realizing it’s rather imperfect. JAY: Prior to 9/11 you said there were several
moments like that. DRAKE: Oh, there’s other moments. Remember,
I was at NSA as well as a contractor, but it was also in the Navy for a number of years
during this whole period. Yeah. JAY: What’s another example? DRAKE: Well, another example is Tenet. He
sent out memos to the entire intelligence community that “the system was blinking red,”
1998, “blinking red”. And we had all the incidents leading up to 2001. All the evidence was there.
All of it. And that doesn’t even begin to address the reality of what NSA already knew
prior to 9/11. They had what they call cast-iron coverage on the Yemeni switchboard, the safe
house. They’d been monitoring that safe house since at least 1996. It’s an absolute lie
of the U.S. government to say that we didn’t know about the two hijackers in San Diego,
for example. Absolute lie. JAY: Well, let’s focus on that, because I
think that’s one of the most revealing stories of the whole pre-9/11 intelligence gathering,
because it involves all the agencies. So, quickly, we have–I’m not very good at remembering
the names, but we have two of the guys that end up on the American Airlines plane are
in San Diego. We have a guy who works as some kind of consultant with the Saudi government,
and later, if I understand correctly, there’s suggestion he’s an FBI informant or asset
in some way as well. DRAKE: That’s another dark thread that has
not been fully unraveled, that they were trying to flip people, or at least turn them into
informants, some of them. JAY: But there’s three agencies, at least,
that know that these two guys are in San Diego, and they’re working with a guy who’s connected
with the Saudis. The FBI knows they’re there, the CIA knows they’re there, and the NSA knows
they’re there. And we are supposed to believe that none of them ever passed on this information,
and never talked to each other about it. It seems a little bit bizarre. DRAKE: Bizarre. But you have to understand
the culture of the intelligence agencies. They have their own egos, and information
is power: I know something that you don’t; if I share it, I give away my power. So you’re
very careful about who you give your information to. JAY: Well, let’s break down the story a little
bit and let’s get clear on what each agency knew. DRAKE: I can only speak to what I know about
NSA. I’m most certainly aware of others, but just so you’re aware in terms of your interviewing
me, I will only speak directly to what I’m aware of or what I discovered or what I gave
to investigators and what I’ve written about. I’m well aware of speculation, some of it
quite informed, some of it probably true in terms of CIA and FBI. JAY: Well, let me read something you’re quoted
in and you signed. It’s called the “NSA Insiders Reveal What Went Wrong”. And this is kind
of a memorandum that was written by you and some of your other intelligence colleagues
that have also–some of them whistleblowers, some who have become critics, people like
Binney and Ray McGovern. And in this, you’re quoted as saying: “NSA had the content of telephone calls between
AA-77 [American Airlines 77] hijacker Khalid al-Mihdhar in San Diego, CA, and the known
al-Qaeda safe house switchboard in Yemen [which you had just mentioned] well before 9/11,
and had not disseminated that information beyond NSA. “In short, when confronted with the prospect
of fessing up, NSA chose instead to obstruct the 9/11 congressional investigation, play
dumb, and keep the truth buried, including the fact that it knew about all inbound and
outbound calls to the safe house switchboard in Yemen. NSA’s senior leaders took me off
the task because they realized–belatedly, for some reason–that I would not take part
in covering up the truth about how much NSA knew but did not share. DRAKE: That’s actually–just for clarification,
that’s in–so the context is critical here, not just the content. But what’s critical
is that I was actually selected as a senior executive to provide the draft statement for
the record, in which General Hayden would actually go down to–this was the Saxby Chambliss
subcommittee. He had a subcommittee on homeland security, had been recently formed. He began
the first 9/11 congressional investigation. It led to the much, much larger joint inquiry,
which was the basis for the 9/11 Commission. I was tasked with putting together that statement
for the record. And there’s a whole story behind this. But ultimately I was taken off.
Why? Because I found out the truth, the critical intelligence that NSA actually had and did
not share, reports they had, all the information regarding the switchboards. So I was taken
off the task. As I was told by the number-three person at NSA, who I reported to, it was a
data integrity problem–a euphemism for you know too much. JAY: Now, just to be–for everyone to understand,
when you join–your first day actually showing up for work is 9/11–you’re at a very senior
level. What is it you’ve been asked–what have you been hired to do? DRAKE: I was actually hired–my literal title
was senior change leader, and I reported to the signals intelligence director. That was
Maureen Baginski. JAY: In your job description, what was your
[crosstalk] DRAKE: I was brought in to help because this
was part of the stakeholders, and particularly Congress, was that NSA was having great difficulty
meeting the demands of the 21st century. And that was both in technology, that was in terms
of management and leadership practices, as well as process. So I was brought in to advise
them and to help put in those practices, information sharing within, critical enabling technologies. JAY: And how senior are you? In the hierarchy,
where are you at? DRAKE: I was at the second-tier level. I’m
reporting to the number three, and only above that’s deputy director and director. JAY: Hayden. DRAKE: That’s right. And Bill Black was the
then deputy director. JAY: So when you say there was evidence about
San Diego, NSA had these phone calls back to the al-Qaeda, what was known to be an al-Qaeda
switchboard in Yemen, NSA had, were listening to these calls and don’t share it, how do
you know they don’t share it? DRAKE: ‘Cause I know that from what I found
out during the course of my time there in the months after 9/11. There’s no evidence
at all that it was shared with any of the normal authorities. There was a back channel,
there was a back channel that was created with Cheney after 9/11. JAY: That’s my question. DRAKE: But we’re talking about the intelligence
prior to 9/11. And NSA had what they call cast-iron coverage on the Yemeni safe house,
which means essentially it’s 24-7, 365. No matter what call is made into that switchboard,
not only is it recorded; the content is also kept as well. And any number coming in, even
if it’s from the United States, you’re going to know about it. And under the Foreign Intelligence
Surveillance Act, if you believe that it rises to the level of somebody in the United States,
even if they’re a resident alien, legal or not, but resident alien, defined as U.S. [incompr.]
U.S. person, you then can get the warrant from the secret court and listen in. JAY: So if you’re saying it wasn’t shared,
Richard Clarke, who was the chief terrorism czar, who under Clinton had cabinet level–and
I always have said this many times in interviews on The Real News–it’s rather interesting
that one of the first early things that happens is after George Tenet, head of CIA, tells
George Bush in the first security briefing the number-one threat to the United States
is al-Qaeda and bin Laden, you then demote your national security guy, Clarke. DRAKE: It wasn’t a priority. I have to say
that. It was not considered a strategic priority, the fact that NSA itself didn’t consider counterterrorism
a strategic priority. It wasn’t a focus of their attention. It really wasn’t. That’s
part of the bubble I keep trying to pop, this idea that somehow the United States, in spite
of the Tenet memos, the system as a whole simply was not paying much attention to it. JAY: Well, let me tell you what Richard Clarke
says. Richard Clarke in a documentary was asked specifically about why he didn’t know
about the intelligence about San Diego, and here’s what he said. RICHARD CLARKE: You have to intentionally
stop it. You have to intervene and say, no, I don’t want that report to go. And I never
got a report to that effect. If there was a decision made to stop normal
distribution with regard to this case, then people like Tom Wilshire would have known
that. JAY: Richard Clarke is saying it’s not just
a question of prioritization. He’s saying a deliberate decision had to be made in the
normal flow of information. Now, let’s remember, this is during a time when he’s already saying
our hair’s on fire. He testifies that–talk about blinking red. It was passed blinking
red. The NSA has to be aware that Clarke and others think something’s coming. We know from
the interview we did with John Kiriakou that the CIA tells–he couldn’t name the country;
he says an Arab country’s ambassador. But a senior CIA official tells a senior Arab
ambassador that we know something’s coming, it’s going to be horrific, and if you have
any information on it, you have to tell us, ’cause we know something terrible’s coming.
So how in a context of that do you not pass on that information and not prioritize unless
there’s–and as I say, we’ve talked to Bob Graham, who was the head of the Senate Intelligence
Committee, about all–there are so many examples of pieces of intelligence. DRAKE: Yeah, but they’re all buried. The critical
pieces didn’t rise to a level sufficient to actually reveal the plot in a way that you
could take direct action, although the intelligence was there. It just wasn’t being analyzed properly.
That’s a fact. JAY: Well, the intelligence was there was
a fact. DRAKE: It was there. It wasn’t being analyzed
in a way that would reveal the fuller plot, let alone actually take out the perpetrators. JAY: Well, we know that the FBI knows about
these guys in San Diego. DRAKE: They were trying to flip them. JAY: Well, ’cause I also heard the CIA knows
about them and they were trying to flip them. DRAKE: That too. That’s true too. JAY: The CIA’s trying to–and the CIA apparently
doesn’t want to tell the FBI and the FBI doesn’t want to tell the CIA. DRAKE: That’s all the institutional prerogatives. JAY: Okay. But they all have a burden to report
to Clarke. And Clarke says–. DRAKE: Clarke’s an outsider. JAY: Well, Clarke says they deliberately don’t
tell me. So if they’re not telling Clarke, how can they–. DRAKE: They don’t trust Clarke. JAY: Well, how can they not be telling Cheney? DRAKE: I don’t have evidence that they told
Cheney. It’s very possible, because Cheney had quickly created his own intelligence network
from those he trusted. Clarke was not part of that network. Fact. So he was cut out. JAY: So the back channel to Cheney is created
pre-9/11, then. DRAKE: There is a back channel to Cheney. JAY: Pre-9/11. DRAKE: Pre-9/11. JAY: So if Clarke said–. DRAKE: And remember, even as late as August,
it is true that the PDB, of which I used to be a part when I was down at the Pentagon
doing imagery analysis, the PDB actually did in fact–there was the president’s daily brief
that first week in August, talking about they’re going to use–. JAY: Yeah, how do not prioritize what you
know about these guys, the Yemen connections, and there’s a presidential–a memo, briefing
from the CIA, saying bin Laden plans to attack America? DRAKE: That’s correct. JAY: And you know two guys are in Seattle. DRAKE: Yup. They let it happen. JAY: That isn’t–yeah, this isn’t just about
prioritization. DRAKE: Yeah, it is. JAY: But let me–I asked the question– DRAKE: It was convenient. It was–. JAY: –I asked to Bob Graham. DRAKE: Okay. JAY: Here’s what I asked to Bob Graham. We’ll
play a clip. I interviewed Bob Graham and asked him exactly this question. JAY: So I’m going to say something which I
think all you can do is say, I can’t comment on, but I’m going to say it. If you’re right–and
I’m going to take what you said even a little further, which–if you are right that Bandar
knew this was going on, then he’s sitting meeting with his friend President Bush regularly
in the days leading up to 9/11 and either not saying anything or somehow does. I mean,
I know you know there’s a lot of theory–and, I think, a lot of evidence that would at least
require an inquiry–that there’s a deliberate attempt not to know. It’s not just lack of–just
incompetency and–. I mean, to believe that it’s just incompetency, then you have to think
it’s like the Keystone Cops of intelligence agencies: they’re just tripping all over each
other. But that seems hard to believe. GRAHAM: Well, and also the fact that it was
so pervasive that virtually all of the agencies of the federal government were moving in the
same direction, from a customs agent at an airport in Orlando who was chastised when
he denied entry into the United States to a Saudi, to the president of the United States
authorizing large numbers of Saudis to leave the country, possibly denying us forever important
insights and information on what happened. You don’t have everybody moving in the same
direction without there being a head coach somewhere who was giving them instructions
as to where he wants them to move. JAY: So that includes before and after the
events. GRAHAM: Primarily before the event. After
the event, it shifts from being an action that supports the activities of the Saudis
to actions that cover up the results of that permission given to the Saudis to act. JAY: So I’ll put you a little bit on the spot
here. Would it be–in this new commission that we hope comes, would it be a legitimate
line of inquiry into whether President Bush and/or Vice President Cheney knew something
might be coming and didn’t do anything about it, in fact may have actually taken action
in the sense of creating a culture of not wanting to know? GRAHAM: Well, without by giving this answer
inferring that I believe that they did in fact have reason to believe that this attack
was about to occur and made a conscious decision to suppress that information, if there were
any evidence–and to my knowledge there is none–of course that would be a line of inquiry
that would be central to answering the question of what was the Saudis’ role and why did the
United States cover it up. DRAKE: Look, we had known since 1998, with
all the intervening terrorist incidents–you had the Khobar Towers, you had the embassy,
you had the Cole, you had a number of other incidents as well, clearly all part of the
pattern. And it was clear even in the intelligence that there was something else that was even
bigger. So it’s not like this was not known. It was even known that it could be something
in terms of a significant landmark or landmarks. JAY: Well, based on some reporting by Jason
Leopold and others, it could have–there’s actually–thought it might be the Twin Towers. DRAKE: Yeah. But remember, this part of the
burden. I was there literally when they had tried to drop the World Trade Center towers
the first time. So part of the fear was that they would come back using something different.
We also knew about the Bojinka. This was that plot during the mid ’90s about blowing up
airliners over the Pacific. This idea that Condi Rice postulates that no one could have
imagined, it was well imagined that you could use airplanes as missiles. All known. And
I’m not even addressing what–you already touched on some of it, my fellow whistleblower,
FBI, Coleen Rowley, right, what became the infamous letter that she sent to the director
of the FBI and testified before the Judiciary Committee. Yeah, it was known that–. JAY: That there were guys in Minneapolis learning
how to stay take off, and they don’t want to learn how to land. DRAKE: That’s correct. JAY: And they can’t get a warrant to get to
the guy’s computer. DRAKE: Yes. JAY: Now, all of a sudden, the FBI’s so worried
about getting constitutional rights to get to somebody’s computer. DRAKE: Yeah. JAY: There are so many examples like this. DRAKE: There’s a number of examples, I agree. JAY: Okay. Well, we’re going to continue this,
where I’m going to ask–you join the NSA, you said, to defend your country. And then
off-camera you told me, but this–. DRAKE: Well, I joined–I say defend my country.
See, I had served in the Air Force during the Cold War. Okay? I flew in RC-135s, listening
in on the Warsaw Pact. I became–the target country in which I became an expert as a crypto
linguist was East Germany. Okay? So I was certainly well aware of what a surveillance
police state looks like and sounds like. Okay? You don’t listen in on those type of communications
year after year without it affecting you in terms of what does that mean, right, and why
it’s important not to go in that direction. So I had served in the Air Force, I actually
had a short stint at the CIA, and then I had been at the Navy for a number of years. JAY: Alright. I’m going to stop you, ’cause
this is where we’re going to pick up in the next segment, ’cause we’re going to get to
how you go from there, from the Navy and from fighting for your country, and I assume believing
most of the narrative that supports all of that–. DRAKE: Actually not. But that’s part of the
deeper story. JAY: Alright. Well, we’re going to get there.
So please join us for the next segment of our interview on The Real News Network.

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51 Replies to “From 9/11 to Mass Surveillance, The Man Who Knew Too Much – Thomas Drake on RAI (1/5)”

  1. this kind of seems deflective because it keeps the same bogey man, al quaeda, bin laden, etc., but doesnt mention a word about the actual structure of nefarious collusion. He's a phony "whistle blower". Exigent circumstances indeed.

  2. He IS part of Q. His photo on the Q website. ReportForThePresident.com Perhaps he does not have the same exact belief system that you do about the event of 9/11, but Q is BIGGER than 9/11. There are 119 special operators/generals/admirals/whistleblowers who have joined together and revealed their knowledge. General Flynn and Admiral Rodgers are ramrodding this Q thing. Drake is telling the story of the depth of knowledge collected by the NSA. He has no special knowledge of "bombs." His knowledge is on INFORMATION. When this is finished, Americans are going to be shell shocked. Many will feel terrified because they continue to have faith in the MSM. Those who are informed and seek information, they have already prepared their pantries w/ a month of food and water for every member of their household. When it is all out in the open, the country will have trouble meetings basic needs as people get over the shock of the arrests and the likes of HIllary Clinton in jail or dead like John McCain. Drake is a very small lpiece, but he is VERY IMPORTANT. Not only did they get information on every American citizen….NSA HAS ALLT HE PHONE CALLS THE CONSPIRATORS MADE. ALL COMMUNICATIONS…THEY ARE IN DEEP SHIT. 9/11 is one of the disasters that will be addressed. there is Benghazi in the KIDNAPPING OF AN AMERICAN AMBASSADOR. Conspiring w/ a foreign govt to subvert USA operations (Morsi in Egypt and Clinton). Fast and Furious. This is HUGE!

  3. Just look what the Democrats are doing to America today with false rape allegations againt brett kavanagh all in the sake of POWER.

  4. Limited hangout and controlled opposition. If he was on the inside, he would know that the whole hijacking story is bunkum.

  5. A failure of information or a corrupt government? Whistle blowers or disinformation agents? I forget whether I took the blue pill or the red pill. Pilate allegedly asked Jesus a question he never answered. ''What is truth?'' Pilate knew everything is BS.

  6. 9/11 WAS SET UP BY US GOVERNMENT AS AN EXCUSE TO GO TO WAR FOR OIL !!!!! THEY GOT THE ARABS TO DO THEIR DIRTY WORK !!! WHY DIDNT YOU BLOW YOUR WHISTLE BEFORE 9/11 ??? WAS YOUR WHISTLE UP YOUR ARSE???

  7. Ten minutes of watching Paul Jay, Real News, is Absolutely FAKE news. government propaganda. 9/11 Inside job by Osama Bush Lading, and cronies.

  8. http://911scholars.ning.com/video/scientific-method-based-expose-of-the-connections-between-okc-and?xg_source=activity

    http://911scholars.ning.com/video/part-2-scientific-method-based-expose-of-the-connections-between?xg_source=activity

  9. Come on… You're only fooling the fools. The fact that you're putting this out reinforces the fact that you have something to cover up.

  10. NSA, CIA ,Netanyahu, MOSSAD, Evidence of THERMITE, Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld, Silverstein& Lony, Burak, Westfield Properties, Lauder, Bloomberg, Dayan, A. Carter, Dov Zakheim, Deutshe, J.I.N.S.A., Perle, Wurmer, Feith, Wolfowitz, Libby, Cohen There are quite a few people and organizations that need to be looked. I believe 9/11 was many crimes within crimes and multilayered deceptions. From everything I've watched, read, and believe Israel is front and center. If we, AMERICANS don't come together united and DEMAND an INDEPENDENT INTERNATIONAL INVESTIGATION into the events of 9/11 our country is truly LOST. The "War on Terror" is a never ending tragedy. So many men, women and children have died and will continue to die and the TRUTH behind it has never been known. Trillions of dollars/ thousands of lives GONE.

  11. Much of what Drake says is unbelievable. The US can't let something happen on purpose by using its own military machinery to execute an attack. If there were no hijacked planes and no hijackers, what does it matter if they lived in San Diego? Drake's whistle-blowing sounds like a variant of the official story that the US let the evildoers put one over on us. His spin on 911 may be the reason he's still alive.

  12. Hmm… this is interesting.. The government chose this person Drake to represent the 'whistleblower' union.. The guys who uncovered how the NSA didn't act upon known threats …..This is how the government wants you all to believe that 9/11 was not an inside job…. but a 'terrorist' act that they 'failed' to stop unfortunately… very clever indeed.

  13. 9/11 catalyst for waking up . . . TAKE TWO (defiance): Most all world Media, especially the disingenuous American Media, CNN, etc., persist in brain-washing the ‘official version’ of 9/11 and the Bin Laden death.  What if all you knew, was a lie?
    .
    No brain-searing Media will state that ‘FOUR’ alleged crash sites, had no passenger plane wreckage, turbine engines, wings, tail sections, bodies, luggage, etc. The FBI did not bother digging the alleged crash site at Shanksville, the official version being; “Everything vaporized”. I conclude, we live under the influence and power of morally degenerate western governments.
    .
    All 9/11 wrongful death litigation was assigned by Congress, to a single federal court, the Southern District of New York, and a single judge, Alvin K. Hellerstein. When a criminal case is resolved ‘without trial’, records obtained through search warrant, remains confidential, away from the public’s eye. All cases were settled out of court. Hellerstein’s son Joseph was a lawyer in Israel.
    .
    The video evidence of 9/11 has been modified, modus operandis, similar to the fraudulent JFK Zapruder video evidence in order to subvert Americans and their way of life.
    .
    It is my conjecture since JFK, Americans have been under attack by subversive elements and the American government comprehensively hijacked. Since JFK, the USA should have been renamed USZA, the United States of Zionist America, with motto ‘Subversion by Deception’.
    .
    9/11 is, outrageously, the largest, most far reaching, ‘false flag’ crime in American/World history, the effects continue relentlessly, today.
    .
    A nuclear Middle East is exactly what JFK desperately wished to avoid. This is exactly why JFK was assassinated. The Israeli prime minister, David Ben-Gurion resigned from office just prior to the assassination. JFK's communications with Ben-Gurion, are still classified.
    .
    Ben-Gurion, Yitzhak Rabin, and Nixon were all in Dallas on 22nd Nov 1963, as were G.H.W Bush and his son G.W. Bush.
    .
    LBJ's mother, grandmother and great grandmother were Jewish. LBJ reversed JFK’s policies regarding Vietnam, and Israel’s ‘nuclear facility’ at Dimona.
    .
    The JFK/Ben-Gurion letters are still kept secret by president Trump, as of 27th November 2017, when 'all' JFK files were due for release, to the general public.
    .
    US Aid law: If any foreign government who receives US assistance is not transparent, on how they spend that money, then that government will not receive further assistance, 'unless the US Secretary of State grants a waiver'. It is illegal to aid nations that have nukes, and have not signed the Nuclear Non-proliferation Agreement.
    .
    Following JFK’s demise, military aid to Israel increased exponentially, from virtually zero.
    Obama, gave $38 billion to Israel – a country with population similar to that of London, England.
    Trump has also passed billions to Israel, while simultaneously Russia faces thousands of NATO troops, tanks, and missiles on its borders.
    .
    Americans must ask penetrating questions of its plutocrats and government, then purge relentlessly.
    .
    USZA governments are despised worldwide. They invade countries on false pretexts (false flag operations), drone strike innocent people, steal oil, gold, etc. and create puppet dictators with Zionist Central Banks, then label resistance fighters as terrorists.
    .
    Why is the Bush/Blair genocide, the false flag ‘war on terror’, morphing globally with millions killed and displaced, by design?
    .
    Mossad Motto: ‘By way of deception thou shalt do war.’
    .
    It is not wise for the governments of Commonwealth countries; Britain, Australia, New Zealand and Canada (4/5th of Five Eyes) to be associated with the pariah, the government of the USZA.
    .
    SNAPSHOT OF AMERICAN FOREIGN POLICY: USS Maine lie, Lusitania stand down, Pearl Harbour stand down, Korean 38th parallel lie, JFK assassination lie, USS Liberty Israeli attack, Gulf of Tonkin Lie, Saddam and WMD lie, Kuwait lie, Al Qaeda/CIA lie, etc.
    .
    Operation Orchard: Israel strikes Syrian reactor: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5GfdH9AzAXE
    .
    Operation Opera – Israel strikes Iraq reactor: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Operation_Opera
    .
    Iraq War, Tony Blair and the Truth – Part 1:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vHFnP1tu0B8
    .
    Tony Blair's Iraq War lies:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QfpJC_Cj9Qg
    .
    BBC expose of Israel's Secret Illegal Nukes https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dk_6CCZ0gCY
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    Kennedy Speech – Conspiracy Secret Societies: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QeYgLLahHv8
    .
    Chris Bollyn – Dual Deception of 9/11: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9aOhnK01wMY
    .
    Operation Mockingbird: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Operation_Mockingbird
    .
    Former NIST employee speaks out: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RJ_jQgIEnI8
    .
    9/11's alive: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tAkWNxhBWjs&feature=share
    .
    HOWEVER THE TIDE IS TURNING: BRexit- the brave British, the ‘little people’, the ‘common people’ have established a redoubt against the ‘European Union juggernaut’, a brazen dictatorship with developing Central Army – a United States of (Zionist) Europe and Central Bank. It is now time for the ‘little people’, the ‘common people’ of the United States to stand against every form, every detail, of corruption and lobbying from big business and secret societies, to lobbying groups, and Congress, or, shall we be farmed ‘RFID micro-chipped’ products of the corporation?
    .
    INDEPENDENT,  ‘non-government’, ‘MEDIA MONITORING’ might reduce the frequency of rampant Intelligence ‘false flag’ deceptions and social engineering using the politics of 'FEAR' and 'LATEST OUTRAGE'.
    .
    Time to heed JFK’s warning.
    FACTS:
    Facebook’s new head of policy is Jordana Cutler, a Netanyahu adviser.
    Regina Dugan, from 'DARPA' (government), has joined Facebook.
    Those of power at 9/11, were dual-citizen Israeli nationals.
    Gen. Powel: Israel has well over 200 atomic weapons; Israel has Neutron bombs (that kill only people leaving infrastructure) and thermonuclear weapons, enough to destroy the entire Middle East.
    Israel has the sixth largest nuclear arsenal, including small tactical nuclear weapons, nuclear land mines, and medium range nuclear weapons capable of being launched from land, sea or air.
    Israel has satellite eyes-in-the-sky, with assistance from the USZA.
    Israeli submarines are based at Haifa.
    .
    The defence forces of France, Britain and Germany are out-classed, leaving Europe vulnerable. https://foxtrotalpha.jalopnik.com/israels-newest-and-most-advanced-submarine-is-their-las-1752459324
    .
    Israel is an ‘undeclared’ nuclear and biological weapon state; not party to the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) to which Europe, America and even Iran are subject, by the IAEA.
    Israeli biological and chemical laboratories are at Nes Ziona.
    The USZA helped Israel develop the Hydrogen bomb, in violation of International law.
    Israel is credited with development of the Stuxnet computer virus, attacking Iran’s nuclear processing plant.
    Jewish Institute for National Security of America, JINSA: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jewish_Institute_for_National_Security_of_America
    Private Federal Reserve Bank: Now $23 Trillion Debt ceiling.
    Israeli History: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=izqsP9lgNsw
    .
    Be aware our TV-fed artificial reality, is ACTIVE social engineering.
    .
    The 9/11 architects of genocide remain at large, and their Insurance/Media fraud demands the following official version – 'FOUR' planes vaporized, into two massive steel towers, the Pentagon and ‘Soil of Shanksville’, without corroborating evidence.
    .
    It's impossible to prove a lie.
    .
    A-Waking…

  14. Really now,….can you not smell the rubbish ? even from you're own easy-chair ? This guy is a "Dis-Information-specialist" without a doubt ! Open the eyes ! I would need a long pair of rubber-boots and a long-handle-shovel to sit through this bullshit ! Give me a break, get this clown off the net,…..him and all the other cronies ! Nuff-said, I feel sick. Peace.

  15. Realy! here's the bare bones of it all! missing trilions from the pentogon, to cover that up,was 9/11, to cover that up weapons of mass,to cover that up isis, youranium sales,billions in cash given to iran for muslim hosteges, and so on,this man is just another gate keeper meant to keep confusion afloat! and by the way , thees two plains were floan as droans, they fly some bomber plains and fighters that way today! as early as the eightys.

  16. In another interview the senior editor who does this interview as well said with 911 even if the shit with the buildings is true let it go there are real conspiracies with 911 we need to focus on…really? Never stop speaking about the bogus physics we were fed and tower 6,7, the twin towers, and the pentagon people

  17. This clown is working for our government to throw all the people away from finding the truth! He they new about it before it happened! Sure they did cause they were in on it!
    9/11 was a very well planned years in advance with a hole list of reasons for it to happen!
    Mostly power& greed!!

  18. This whole thing is completely laughable. Anybody that would buy into this rubbish clearly has it taken a look at the massive amount of other information out there that confirms this was as red flag event.

  19. This guy is CIA through and through , he never acknowledges that 9/11 was an inside job , lol , nice try you traitor …..

  20. I just watched the U-tube feature on the JFK assassination and noticed that the BBC called the White House 30 minutes before the assassination that something terrible is going to happen and the BBC also broadcast that Building 7 fell 30 minutes before it came down. Where did the BBC get the information?

  21. Is this "the REAL news"? This is another miss information.game fo the people. Still going after some Arabs is like telling jokes.

  22. Mind you, trillions of dollars came up missing at the Pentagon on 9/10 then next day the 9/11 tragedy. The mystery remains today. So, where is it? What the hell happened to it? Follow the money

  23. The proven fact that they all did it: Al Qaeda, Israel, CIA, Pentagon, Bankers, Saudi Arabia, Pakistan, Turkey, and others are somehow involved,such as UK, France, Egypt, Jordan.They are all destroying Iraq, Syria, Iran, Afghanistan
    They all deceiving the world and continue to support terrorism until this moment and still.

  24. https://djermano.wordpress.com/2019/01/07/trump-fleeces-kim-woo-choong-murders-s-korean-president-roh-moo-hyun-and-n-koreas-kim-jong-nam-for-their-money/

  25. 911 Perpetrators: Cheney-Haliburton; Bush-Carlyle Group; Mossad; Cabal of Zionists and USA-Israel Dual Citizens in the US Govt.; Silverstein; Guliani; Paid Saudi Scapegoats; the Oil-Banker Illuminati Predators and the Global Deep State with its many divisions of secret societies. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TjvTAuBKCuo

  26. so this YING YANG actually believes the whole highjacker B S ?? he is just a different slice of a Inside Job (cover up) . look to the cia and israel for the real terrorists. ( Z E R O planes Crashed ANYWHERE ) its pretty obvious when you look outside the MSMs narrow box !!

  27. Since "Thin Thread" was being used at the time. And just before 9/11, they stopped using it. I think that if it was being used at the time, they would have "seen" who was involved and wanted this destruction of the "three" towers and the Pentagon. Thin Thread had to be stopped, before it exposed who was really behind this…

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