Spying


 

This section of Graphic Humor in political-economic, national or international issues, are very ingenious in describing what happened, is happening or will happen. It also extends to various other local issues or passing around the world.

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There are also other non-political humor that ranges from reflective or just to get us a smile when we see them.

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Farewell!.

CTsT

 

 Ger­many an­nounced Thurs­day that it had or­dered the se­nior Amer­i­can in­tel­li­gence of­fi­cial in the coun­try ex­pelled, re­tal­i­at­ing for ap­par­ent Amer­i­can re­cruit­ment of spies here.

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“The rep­re­sen­ta­tive of the U.S. in­tel­li­gence ser­vices at the Unit­ed States Em­bassy has been asked to leave Ger­many,” a gov­ern­ment spokesman, Stef­fen Seib­ert, said in a state­ment.

“The re­quest oc­curred against the back­drop of the on­go­ing in­ves­ti­ga­tion by fed­er­al pros­e­cu­tors as well as the ques­tions that were posed months ago about the ac­tiv­i­ties of U.S. in­tel­li­gence agen­cies in Ger­many,” he said. “The gov­ern­ment takes the mat­ter very se­ri­ous­ly.”

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Mr. Seib­ert said Ger­many con­tin­ued to seek “close and trust­ing” co­op­er­a­tion with its West­ern part­ners, “es­pe­cial­ly the Unit­ed States.”

Clemens Bin­ninger, a mem­ber of Chan­cel­lor An­gela Merkel’s par­ty, said the move was “a po­lit­i­cal re­ac­tion of the gov­ern­ment to the lack of will­ing­ness of U.S. au­thor­i­ties to help clear up any ques­tions aris­ing in the past year” in con­nec­tion with Amer­i­can sur­veil­lance of Ger­many and its lead­ers.

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Ger­man of­fi­cials have been frus­trat­ed in their ef­forts to re­ceive clar­i­fi­ca­tion from Wash­ing­ton over al­le­ga­tions of spy­ing that be­gan last year when it was re­vealed that the Na­tion­al Se­cu­ri­ty Agency had been mon­i­tor­ing the

chan­cel­lor’s cell­phone. Al­though Pres­i­dent Oba­ma has of­fered as­sur­ances that it will no longer hap­pen, rev­e­la­tions last week that a mem­ber of the Ger­man se­cret ser­vices had been spy­ing for the Unit­ed States sparked a fresh round of out­rage.

On Wednes­day, the po­lice searched the Berlin of­fice and apart­ment of a man sus­pect­ed of be­ing a spy, fed­er­al pros­e­cu­tors said. They de­clined to give fur­ther in­for­ma­tion, but the Ger­man news me­dia re­port­ed that the sus­pect worked for the De­fense Min­istry. A min­istry spokesman con­firmed that it was in­volved in an in­ves­ti­ga­tion.

* NYT, 11 July 2014, Alison Smale reported from Berlin, and Melissa Eddy from Paris. (Text)

 

This section of Graphic Humor in political-economic, national or international issues, are very ingenious in describing what happened, is happening or will happen. It also extends to various other local issues or passing around the world.

1 2 3 4

There are also other non-political humor that ranges from reflective or just to get us a smile when we see them.

5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12

Anyone with basic education and to stay informed of important news happening in our local and global world may understand and enjoy them.

Farewell!.

CTsT

 

The US National Security Agency (NSA) has upset a great many people this year. Since June, newspapers have been using documents leaked by former intelligence worker Edward Snowden to show how the secretive but powerful agency has spied on the communications of US citizens and foreign governments. Last month, the media reported that the NSA, which is based in Fort Meade, Maryland, had undermined Internet security standards. The revelations have sparked international outrage at the highest levels — even the president of Brazil cancelled a visit to the United States because of the spying.

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Yet amid the uproar, NSA-supported mathematicians and computer scientists have remained mostly quiet, to the growing frustration of others in similar fields. “Most have never met a funding source they do not like,” says Phillip Rogaway, a computer scientist at the University of California, Davis, who has sworn not to accept NSA funding and is critical of other researchers’ silence. “And most of us have little sense of social responsibility.”

Mathematicians and the NSA are certainly interdependent. The agency declares that it is the United States’ largest maths employer, and Samuel Rankin, director of the Washington DC office of the American Mathematical Society, estimates that the agency hires 30–40 mathematicians every year. The NSA routinely holds job fairs on university campuses, and academic researchers can work at the agency on sabbaticals. In 2013, the agency’s mathematical sciences programme offered more than US$3.3 million in research grants.

Furthermore, the NSA has designated more than 150 colleges and universities as centres of excellence, which qualifies students and faculty members for extra support. It can also fund research indirectly through other agencies, and so the total amount of support may be much higher. A leaked budget document says that the NSA spends more than $400 million a year on research and technology — although only a fraction of this money might go to research outside the agency itself.

 

Many US researchers, especially those towards the basic-research end of the spectrum, are comfortable with the NSA’s need for their expertise. Christopher Monroe, a physicist at the University of Maryland in College Park, is among them. He previously had an NSA grant for basic research on controlling cold atoms, which can form the basis of the qubits of information in quantum computers. He notes that he is free to publish in the open literature, and he has no problems with the NSA research facilities in physical sciences, telecommunications and languages that sit on his campus. Monroe is sympathetic to the NSA’s need to track the develop­ment of quantum computers that could one day be used to crack codes beyond the ability of conventional machines. “I understand what’s in the newspapers,” he says, “but the NSA is funding serious long-term fundamental research and I’m happy they’re doing it.”

Dena Tsamitis, director of education, outreach and training at Carnegie Mellon University’s cybersecurity research centre in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, also wants to maintain the relationship. She oversees visitors and recruiters from the NSA but her centre gets no direct funding. She says that her graduate students understand the NSA’s public surveillance to be “a policy decision, not a technology decision. Our students are most interested in the technology.” And the NSA, she says — echoing many other researchers — “has very interesting technology problems”.

 

The academics who are professionally uneasy with the NSA tend to lie on the applied end of the spectrum: they work on computer security and cryptography rather than pure mathematics and basic physics. Matthew Green, a cryptographer at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, Maryland, says that these researchers are unsettled in part because they are dependent on protocols developed by the US National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) to govern most encrypted web traffic. When it was revealed that the NSA had inserted a ‘back door’ into the NIST standards to allow snooping, some of them felt betrayed. “We certainly had no idea that they were tampering with products or standards,” says Green. He is one of 47 technologists who on 4 October sent a letter to the director of a group created last month by US President Barack Obama to review NSA practices, protesting because the group does not include any independent technologists.

Edward Felten, who studies computer security at Princeton University in New Jersey, says that the NSA’s breach of security standards means that cryptographers will need to change what they call their threat model — the set of assumptions about possible attacks to guard against. Now the attacks might come from the home team. “There was a sense of certain lines that NSA wouldn’t cross,” says Felten, “and now we’re not so sure about that.”

 

Ann Finkbeiner, Nature,  October 8, 2013