War is Peace - Freedom is Slavery - Ignorance is Strength

Saturday, December 24, 2005

Smile - You're on Carlyle Camera

The New York Times is reporting today that the NSA is "tapping directly into some of the American telecommunication system's main arteries" in order to collect and analyze a "vast trove" of information about the communications of individuals both inside the United States and around the world. What hasn't been disclosed is the possible involvement of everyone's favorite boogey-man multi-national: The Carlyle Group.

--Spy Agency Mined Vast Data Trove, Officials Report (N.Y. Times)

Along with its numerous defense holdings The Carlyle Group holds a diverse portfolio of other investments that includes a large Real Estate holding arm. Of Carlyle's 400 odd properties, there are three very special ones that are managed by a subsidiary, CRG West.

--CRG West

The three properties managed by CRG West are what as known as "carrier hotels." These are data centers where internet and telecom providers meet up and their networks interconnect. One Wilshire, in Los Angeles, is a major transit point for international communications and a hub for data traffic all over the west coast. One Wilshire's website boasts that the building is "home to virtually all of the market leaders in the telecommunications industry." Along with One Wilshire, the Carlyle Group owns and CRG West manages similar facilities in San Jose and Washington D.C.

Given that these locations would be ideal for doing exactly the type of data interception that the Times article describes, and that their owner has extensive defense interests and intelligence community connections, it is pertinent to ask if the Carlyle Group is one of the unnamed corporations that is cooperating with the NSA on this project.

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