General News of 2013-12-21

Exposed! US/UK hacked Ibn Chambas' phone

Latest disclosures by NSA leaker Edward Snowden show that, the US National Security Agency and the GHCQ(UK) spied on Ibn Chambas for years when he worked with ECOWAS.
Interestingly, the contents of Dr. Chambas's Private messages were used as exhibits of success stories in training materials of the NSA and GHCQ.
These were revealed yesterday by the Guardian and the New York Times.
The big question is ... Is Dr Chambas a Terrorist? Since the US claims it spies on the world to snoop out terrorists.
Below are some excerpts
From the Guardian .....
In all, communications from more than 60 countries were targeted in this particular operation, with other names listed in the GCHQ documents including Mohamed Ibn Chambas, the current African Union-United Nations joint special representative for Darfur, as well as multiple African heads of state.
Imboden, from the non-profit Ideas Centre in Geneva, and Solomon Asamoah, deputy head of the Africa Finance Corporation, also appeared on GCHQ's lists.
The documents do not give any insight into why GCHQ deemed them worthy of surveillance.
In 2009, Chambas was president of Ecowas. He had been closely involved in efforts to bring peace to Liberia, and GCHQ picked up text messages he sent while in the country to receive an award.
One message read: "Thanks Kwame. Glad to know all is well. Am in Liberia for receive National Award … inde celebration." A second added: "What machine gun sounds? Am in Gbanga former HQ of Charles Taylor …"
From the Newyork Times
Many of the reports, written by British teams specializing in Sigint, shorthand for “signals intelligence,” are called “Bude Sigint Development Reports,” referring to a British spy campus on the Cornwall coast. The reports often reveal which countries were the endpoints for the intercepted communications, and information on which satellite was carrying the traffic.
Strengthening the likelihood that full transcripts were taken during the intercepts is the case of Mohamed Ibn Chambas, an official of the Economic Community of West African States, known as Ecowas, a regional initiative of 15 countries that promotes economic and industrial activity. Whether intentionally or through some oversight, when Mr. Chambas’s communications were intercepted in August 2009, dozens of his complete text messages were copied into one of the reports.
Referred to in the transcripts as “Dr. Chambers,” he seems to have been monitored during an especially humdrum day or two of travel. “Am glad yr day was satisfying,” Mr. Chambas texted one acquaintance. “I spent my whole day travelling... Had to go from Abidjan to Accra to catch a flt to Monrovia... The usual saga of intra afr.”
Later he recommended a book, “A Colonial History of Northern Ghana,” to the same person. “Interesting and informative,” Mr. Chambas texted. The high point of his day was receiving an award in Liberia, but soon he was busy working out logistics for future appointments.
“Where is the conference pl? Didnt get the invt,” he texted another contact. He discussed further details before adding, perhaps wistfully, given his grinding travel schedule: “Have a restful Sunday.”
Meanwhile, US President Barack Obama has suggested there may be a review of surveillance by the National Security Agency in the wake of a series of spying revelations.
He said in "light of disclosures that have taken place" and public concerns about the programmes "there may be another way of skinning the cat".
But Mr Obama said ex-NSA contractor Edward Snowden had caused "unnecessary damage" by leaking documents.
He declined to say whether or not Mr Snowden could be offered an amnesty.