NSA documents state the United States and United Kingdom allegedly spied on Israeli drones, according to an investigation by The Intercept (a publication spearheaded by Glenn Greenwald, an outspoken anti-NSA agitator notorious for aiding and abetting former NSA contractor Edward Snowden).
“American and British intelligence secretly tapped into live video feeds from Israeli drones and fighter jets, monitoring military operations in Gaza, watching for a potential strike against Iran, and keeping tabs on the drone technology Israel exports around the world,” reports The Intercept. The investigation is supported by overwhelming concrete evidence, citing Snowden’s NSA leaks as its source:
Under a classified program code-named “Anarchist,” the U.K.’s Government Communications Headquarters, or GCHQ, working with the National Security Agency, systematically targeted Israeli drones from a mountaintop on the Mediterranean island of Cyprus. GCHQ files provided by former NSA contractor Edward Snowden include a series of “Anarchist snapshots” — thumbnail images from videos recorded by drone cameras. The files also show location data mapping the flight paths of the aircraft. In essence, U.S. and British agencies stole a bird’s-eye view from the drones.
The Intercept also published photographic evidence, or “snapshots,” from the covert project (seen here).
Like its nuclear program, Israel has kept the existence of its drone program secret, “refusing to even acknowledge that it uses them in warfare,” according to CNN. While its nuclear program is probably the worst-kept secret in the region, the comprehensive NSA leaks on Israel’s military drone program may compromise the country’s security. In fact, the Jewish State primarily uses the program to target and neutralize Hamas terrorist enclaves in Gaza plotting attacks against Israeli civilians.
Notably, US and UK espionage purportedly extended far beyond Israel’s drone program. CNN reports:
According to one document, hackers at NSA and GCHQ were able to decode the videos using publicly-available software. This shows that Israeli drones are not using a robust system to encrypt these signals.
But getting real-time, immediate video feeds from Israeli drones is a difficult feat, the documents stated.
Documents indicate that spies were able to capture the Israeli drone signals from a British military outpost in the island of Cyprus.
Israeli drones weren’t the only things that were spied on. In at least one instance, American spies were able to tap into the video feed of an Israeli F-16 fighter jet, documents show.
Reporting from The Intercept should be taken with a grain of salt, given the publication’s activist stance and prejudicial posturing against the United States and Israel in the past. CNN analyzed the documents in-depth and was unable to verify their authenticity, since spy agencies, naturally, refrain from directly addressing these matters.
The NSA, GCHQ, and the Israeli embassy would not comment on the documents.
“The U.K.’s Government Communications Headquarters, or GCHQ, working with the National Security Agency, systematically targeted Israeli drones from a mountaintop on the Mediterranean island of Cyprus.”
Only GCHQ commented on the story, telling CNN, “It is a longstanding policy that we do not comment on intelligence matters.”
Nearly every developed country in the world with a formidable national security apparatus spies on both allies and enemies to gain a strategic advantage. This latest revelation should not be surprising. “The American and British spying are part of regular, ongoing international espionage. The United States and Israel, although allies, regularly peek in on each other’s military projects, according to several former U.S. national security officials,” explains CNN.