Monday, November 20, 2006

US Senate's N-Bill facilitates spy operations

A snippet from a column written by Dr. A. Gopalakrishnan in rediff: link about the last minute introduction of a section in the Indo-US Nuclear deal bill, which might allow US spying in India!! Something that needs to be discussed in Indian media.

Of the changes that were made, what is most appalling is the inclusion of Section 115, which the Senate approved without any vote-counting or voice vote. After reading out the text of this Section, Senator Lugar just said one sentence, 'I urge adoption of the amendment', and without objection or discussion it was directly 'agreed to.'

This entirely new Section was neither a subject in any of the several open discussions between the US Congressional Committees and the various representatives of the US administration over the last year, nor was it part of any previous versions of the two bills, till it was abruptly introduced and approved quietly by the Senate on November 16


and this (emphasis mine)

The Indo-US nuclear deal is supposed to be for civilian nuclear cooperation in the hope that it will enhance the energy security of the country. Section 115 of the bill deals totally with matters of nuclear proliferation control. In the guise of conducting joint R&D in nuclear non-proliferation, with emphasis on nuclear safeguards, the US attempt appears to be in using the Indo-US nuclear deal as a vehicle to facilitate a formal entry for the US National Nuclear Security Administration into India.

The US' NSA is widely suspected to be involved in a variety of covert nuclear interventions and clandestine operations in many countries around the world, on behalf of the US government, and they work in close cooperation with intelligence agencies like the Central Intelligence Agency, the US National Security Agency and the US Defence Intelligence Agency. The US State Department, US Defence Department and the Department of Energy are also closely involved with the NSA. Section 115 states that the Secretaries of DoD and DoE will be consulted in carrying out the envisaged R&D program.