Fox News host Tucker Carlson Tuesday night accused the National Security Agency (NSA) of lying after it released a statement claiming that his “allegation” was untrue just before he went on the air. Carlson on Monday accused the NSA of spying on his communications after a whistleblower had alerted him to the fact.
Carlson had specifically alleged that the spy agency was “monitoring our electronic communications, and is planning to leak them in an attempt to take this show off the air.”
“This allegation is untrue,” the unsigned NSA statement said, although Carlson had made several allegations about the surveillance.
“Tucker Carlson has never been an intelligence target of the Agency and the NSA has never had any plans to try to take his program off the air,” the statement added.
Carlson, of course, had never accused the NSA of specifically “targeting” him. It could well be that his communications were being picked up during the course of foreign surveillance, and then unmasked by a corrupt intelligence official in the Biden Administration.
“NSA has a foreign intelligence mission,” the NSA statement continued. “We target foreign powers to generate insights on foreign activities that could harm the United States. With limited exceptions (e.g. an emergency), NSA may not target a US citizen without a court order that explicitly authorizes the targeting.”
The spy agency posted their word salad onto Twitter, and turned off replies to avoid getting ratioed.
A statement from NSA regarding recent allegations: pic.twitter.com/vduE6l6YWg
— NSA/CSS (@NSAGov) June 30, 2021
Carlson called the NSA statement “infuriatingly dishonest” and “an entire paragraph of lies written purely for the benefit of the intel community’s lackeys at CNN and MSNBC.”
“Last night on this show, we made a very straightforward claim: NSA has read my private emails without my permission. Period,” Carlson stated. “That’s what we said. Tonight’s statement from the NSA does not deny that.”
Carlson explained that there was no doubt whatsoever that what the whistleblower had told him was true.
“This person had details from my emails that no one outside the recipient could have known, so it was not a delusion, it was entirely real,” he said. “In fact, it was confirmed.”
The Fox host noted that after his show last night, other news outlets “acted like it was totally normal for heavily politicized intel agencies to spy on and threaten journalists they disagree with,” adding that it is “very dangerous,” and if it’s allowed to continue, it will be the “end of Democracy.”
Carlson also blasted White House “flack” Jen Psaki, after she responded to a reporter’s question about his allegations earlier in the day.
“Well, the NSA … is an entity that focuses on foreign threats and individuals who are trying, attempting to do us harm on foreign soil,” Psaki said. “So, that is their purview. But beyond that, I would point you to the intelligence community.”
“It’s like she’s reading the Wikipedia entry,” Carlson scoffed. “But here’s what to notice—no denial!”
Carlson argued that the NSA’s mission may be to spy on foreigners, but it routinely spies on “millions of Americans”—sometimes for political reasons. “Everyone knows this,” he stressed. “Everyone! Including sitting members of the Intel Committee. Some of them are paranoid about their own communications,” he pointed out.
“In Washington this is just considered fine, but it’s not fine. It is dangerous, and it’s wrong,” he added.
“Some faceless hack in a powerful government spy agency decides he doesn’t like what you think and so he’s going to hurt you, and there’s nothing you can do about it,” he lamented, adding, “that could happen to you, and when it does, trust us, NBC News will call you a delusional QAnon conspiracy theorist for complaining about it.”
Carlson recounted how his producers had spent the day trying to contact the “highly political, left-wing” NSA Director Gen. Paul Nakasone, but were unsuccessful. “We were told Paul Nakasone just wasn’t there,” he said.
Just minutes before his show went on the air, Carlson said the NSA sent him their statement,” which he noted does not deny his allegation that the NSA read his private emails without his permission. Carlson pointed out that the statement did include the “non sequitur” that he has never been an “intelligence target.”
“The question remains: Did the Biden administration read my personal emails?” he asked. “That’s the question that we asked directly to NSA officials when we spoke to them about 20 minutes ago in a very heated conversation: Did you read my emails? And again, they refused to say. Again and again. And then, they refused even to explain why they couldn’t answer that simple question. ‘We can’t tell you and we won’t tell you why we can’t tell you,’” a visibly agitated Carlson continued.
“My emails! And the message was clear: ‘We can do whatever we want. We can read your personal texts, we can read your personal emails, we can send veiled threats your way to brush you back if we don’t like your politics. We can do anything. We’re our own country, and there’s literally nothing you can do about it. We’re in charge, you are not.’ Orwellian does not begin to describe the experience,” Carlson concluded.