Link : http://english.pravda.ru/main/2001/07/14/10131.html 


Unknown to most of the world, satellites can perform
astonishing and often menacing feats. This should come as no surprise when one
reflects on the massive effort poured into satellite technology since the
Soviet satellite Sputnik, launched in 1957, caused panic in the U.S. A spy
satellite can monitor a person’s every movement, even when the “target” is
indoors or deep in the interior of a building or traveling rapidly down the
highway in a car, in any kind of weather (cloudy, rainy, stormy). There is no place
to hide on the face of the earth. It takes just three satellites to blanket the
world with detection capacity. Besides tracking a person’s every action and
relaying the data to a computer screen on earth, amazing powers of satellites
include reading a person’s mind, monitoring conversations, manipulating
electronic instruments and physically assaulting someone with a laser beam.
Remote reading of someone’s mind through satellite technology is quite bizarre,
yet it is being done; it is a reality at present, not a chimera from a
futuristic dystopia! To those who might disbelieve my description of satellite
surveillance, I’d simply cite a tried-and-true Roman proverb: Time reveals all
things (tempus omnia revelat).



As extraordinary as clandestine satellite powers are, nevertheless prosaic
satellite technology is much evident in daily life. Satellite businesses
reportedly earned $26 billion in 1998. We can watch transcontinental television
broadcasts “via satellite,” make long-distance phone calls relayed by
satellite, be informed of cloud cover and weather conditions through satellite
images shown on television, and find our geographical bearings with the aid of
satellites in the GPS (Global Positioning System). But behind the facade of
useful satellite technology is a Pandora’s box of surreptitious technology. Spy
satellites–as opposed to satellites for broadcasting and exploration of
space–have little or no civilian use–except, perhaps, to subject one’s enemy
or favorite malefactor to surveillance. With reference to detecting things from
space, Ford Rowan, author of Techno Spies, wrote “some U.S. military satellites
are equipped with infra-red sensors that can pick up the heat generated on
earth by trucks, airplanes, missiles, and cars, so that even on cloudy days the
sensors can penetrate beneath the clouds and reproduce the patterns of heat
emission on a TV-type screen. During the Vietnam War sky high infra-red sensors
were tested which detect individual enemy soldiers walking around on the
ground.” Using this reference, we can establish 1970 as the approximate date of
the beginning of satellite surveillance–and the end of the possibility of
privacy for several people.



The government agency most heavily involved in satellite surveillance
technology is the Advanced Research Projects Agency (ARPA), an arm of the
Pentagon. NASA is concerned with civilian satellites, but there is no hard and
fast line between civilian and military satellites. NASA launches all
satellites, from either Cape Kennedy in Florida or Vandenberg Air Force Base in
California, whether they are military-operated, CIA-operated,
corporate-operated or NASA’s own. Blasting satellites into orbit is a major
expense. It is also difficult to make a quick distinction between government
and private satellites; research by NASA is often applicable to all types of
satellites. Neither the ARPA nor NASA makes satellites; instead, they
underwrite the technology while various corporations produce the hardware.
Corporations involved in the satellite business include Lockheed, General
Dynamics, RCA, General Electric, Westinghouse, Comsat, Boeing, Hughes Aircraft,
Rockwell International, Grumman Corp., CAE Electronics, Trimble Navigation and
TRW.



The World Satellite Directory, 14th edition (1992), lists about a thousand
companies concerned with satellites in one way or another. Many are merely in
the broadcasting business, but there are also product headings like “remote
sensing imagery,” which includes Earth Observation Satellite Co. of Lanham,
Maryland, Downl Inc. of Denver, and Spot Image Corp. of Reston, Virginia. There
are five product categories referring to transponders. Other product categories
include earth stations (14 types), “military products and systems,” “microwave
equipment,” “video processors,” “spectrum analyzers.” The category “remote
sensors” lists eight companies, including ITM Systems Inc., in Grants Pass,
Oregon, Yool Engineering of Phoenix, and Satellite Technology Management of
Costa Mesa, California. Sixty-five satellite associations are listed from all
around the world, such as Aerospace Industries Association, American
Astronautical Society, Amsat and several others in the U.S.



Spy satellites were already functioning and violating people’s right to privacy
when President Reagan proposed his “Strategic Defense Initiative,” or Star
Wars, in the early 80s, long after the Cuban Missile Crisis of 1962 had
demonstrated the military usefulness of satellites. Star Wars was supposed to
shield the U.S. from nuclear missiles, but shooting down missiles with
satellite lasers proved infeasible, and many scientists and politicians
criticized the massive program. Nevertheless, Star Wars gave an enormous boost
to surveillance technology and to what may be called “black bag” technology,
such as mind reading and lasers that can assault someone, even someone indoors.
Aviation Week & Space Technology mentioned in 1984 that “facets of the
project [in the Star Wars program] that are being hurried along include the
awarding of contracts to study…a surveillance satellite network.” It was
bound to be abused, yet no group is fighting to cut back or subject to
democratic control this terrifying new technology. As one diplomat to the U.N.
remarked, “‘Star Wars’ was not a means of creating heaven on earth, but it
could result in hell on earth.”



The typical American actually may have little to fear, since the chances of
being subjected to satellite surveillance are rather remote. Why someone would
want to subject someone else to satellite surveillance might seem unclear at
first, but to answer the question you must realize that only the elite have
access to such satellite resources. Only the rich and powerful could even begin
to contemplate putting someone under satellite surveillance, whereas a middle-
or working-class person would not even know where to begin. Although access to
surveillance capability is thus largely a function of the willfulness of the
powerful, nevertheless we should not conclude that only the powerless are
subjected to it. Perhaps those under satellite surveillance are mainly the
powerless, but wealthy and famous people make more interesting targets, as it
were, so despite their power to resist an outrageous violation of their
privacy, a few of them may be victims of satellite surveillance. Princess Diana
may have been under satellite reconnaissance. No claim of being subject to
satellite surveillance can be dismissed a priori.



It is difficult to estimate just how many Americans are being watched by
satellites, but if there are 200 working surveillance satellites (a common
number in the literature), and if each satellite can monitor 20 human targets,
then as many as 4000 Americans may be under satellite surveillance. However,
the capability of a satellite for multiple-target monitoring is even harder to
estimate than the number of satellites; it may be connected to the number of
transponders on each satellite, the transponder being a key device for both
receiving and transmitting information. A society in the grips of the National
Security State is necessarily kept in the dark about such things. Obviously,
though, if one satellite can monitor simultaneously 40 or 80 human targets,
then the number of possible victims of satellite surveillance would be doubled
or quadrupled.



A sampling of the literature provides insight into this fiendish space-age
technology. One satellite firm reports that “one of the original concepts for
the Brilliant Eyes surveillance satellite system involved a long-wavelength
infrared detector focal plane that requires periodic operation near 10 Kelvin.”
A surveillance satellite exploits the fact that the human body emits infra-red
radiation, or radiant heat; according to William E. Burrows, author of Deep
Black, “the infrared imagery would pass through the scanner and register on the
[charged-couple device] array to form a moving infrared picture, which would
then be amplified, digitalized, encrypted and transmitted up to one of the
[satellite data system] spacecraft…for downlink [to earth].” But opinion
differs as to whether infrared radiation can be detected in cloudy conditions.
According to one investigator, there is a way around this potential obstacle:
“Unlike sensors that passively observe visible-light and infra-red radiation,
which are blocked by cloud cover and largely unavailable at night, radar
sensors actively emit microwave pulses that can penetrate clouds and work at
any hour.” This same person reported in 1988 that “the practical limit on
achievable resolution for a satellite-based sensor is a matter of some dispute,
but is probably roughly ten to thirty centimeters. After that point,
atmospheric irregularities become a problem.” But even at the time she wrote
that, satellite resolution, down to each subpixel, on the contrary, was much
more precise, a matter of millimeters–a fact which is more comprehensible when
we consider the enormous sophistication of satellites, as reflected in such
tools as multi-spectral scanners, interferometers, visible infrared spin scan
radiometers, cryocoolers and hydride sorption beds.


Probably the most sinister aspect of satellite
surveillance, certainly its most stunning, is mind-reading. As early as 1981,
G. Harry Stine (in his book Confrontation in Space), could write that

Computers have “read” human minds by means of deciphering the outputs of
electroencephalographs (EEGs). Early work in this area was reported by the
Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) in 1978. EEG’s are now known
to be crude sensors of neural activity in the human brain, depending as they do
upon induced electrical currents in the skin. Magnetoencephalographs (MEGs)
have since been developed using highly sensitive electromagnetic sensors that
can directly map brain neural activity even through even through the bones of
the skull. The responses of the visual areas of the brain have now been mapped
by Kaufman and others at Vanderbilt University. Work may already be under way
in mapping the neural activity of other portions of the human brain using the
new MEG techniques. It does not require a great deal of prognostication to
forecast that the neural electromagnetic activity of the human brain will be
totally mapped within a decade or so and that crystalline computers can be
programmed to decipher the electromagnetic neural signals.



In 1992, Newsweek reported that “with powerful new devices that peer through
the skull and see the brain at work, neuroscientists seek the wellsprings of
thoughts and emotions, the genesis of intelligence and language. They hope, in
short, to read your mind.” In 1994, a scientist noted that “current imaging
techniques can depict physiological events in the brain which accompany sensory
perception and motor activity, as well as cognition and speech.” In order to
give a satellite mind-reading capability, it only remains to put some type of
EEG-like-device on a satellite and link it with a computer that has a data bank
of brain-mapping research. I believe that surveillance satellites began reading
minds–or rather, began allowing the minds of targets to be read–sometime in
the early 1990s. Some satellites in fact can read a person’s mind from space.



Also part of satellite technology is the notorious, patented “Neurophone,” the
ability of which to manipulate behavior defies description. In Brave New World,
Huxley anticipated the Neurophone. In that novel, people hold onto a metal knob
to get “feely effects” in a simulated orgy where “the facial errogenous zones
of the six thousand spectators in the Alhambra tingled with almost intolerable
galvanic pleasure.” Though not yet applied to sex, the Neurophone–or more
precisely, a Neurophone-like-instrument–has been adapted for use by satellites
and can alter behavior in the manner of subliminal audio “broadcasting,” but
works on a different principle. After converting sound into electrical
impulses, the Neurophone transmits radio waves into the skin, where they
proceed to the brain, bypassing the ears and the usual cranial auditory nerve
and causing the brain to recognize a neurological pattern as though it were an
audible communication, though often on a subconscious level. A person
stimulated with this device “hears” by a very different route. The Nuerophone
can cause the deaf to “hear” again. Ominously, when its inventor applied for a
second patent on an improved Neurophone, the National Security Agency tried
unsuccessfully to appropriate the device.



A surveillance satellite, in addition, can detect human speech. Burrows
observed that satellites can “even eavesdrop on conversations taking place deep
within the walls of the Kremlin.” Walls, ceilings, and floors are no barrier to
the monitoring of conversation from space. Even if you were in a highrise
building with ten stories above you and ten stories below, a satellite’s audio
surveillance of your speech would still be unhampered. Inside or outside, in
any weather, anyplace on earth, at any time of day, a satellite “parked” in
space in a geosynchronous orbit (whereby the satellite, because it moves in
tandem with the rotation of the earth, seems to stand still) can detect the
speech of a human target. Apparently, as with reconnaissance in general, only
by taking cover deep within the bowels of a lead-shielding fortified building
could you escape audio monitoring by a satellite.



There are various other satellite powers, such as manipulating electronic
instruments and appliances like alarms, electronic watches and clocks, a
television, radio, smoke detector and the electrical system of an automobile.
For example, the digital alarm on a watch, tiny though it is, can be set off by
a satellite from hundreds of miles up in space. And the light bulb of a lamp
can be burned out with the burst of a laser from a satellite. In addition,
street lights and porch lights can be turned on and off at will by someone at
the controls of a satellite, the means being an electromagnetic beam which
reverses the light’s polarity. Or a lamp can be made to burn out in a burst of
blue light when the switch is flicked. As with other satellite powers, it makes
no difference if the light is under a roof or a ton of concrete–it can still
be manipulated by a satellite laser. Types of satellite lasers include the
free-electron laser, the x-ray laser, the neutral-particle-beam laser, the
chemical-oxygen-iodine laser and the mid-infra-red advanced chemical laser.



Along with mind-reading, one of the most bizarre uses of a satellite is to
physically assault someone. An electronic satellite beam–using far less energy
than needed to blast nuclear missiles in flight–can “slap” or bludgeon someone
on earth. A satellite beam can also be locked onto a human target, with the
victim being unable to evade the menace by running around or driving around,
and can cause harm through application of pressure on, for example, one’s head.
How severe a beating can be administered from space is a matter of conjecture,
but if the ability to actually murder someone this way has not yet been worked
out, there can be no doubt that it will soon become a reality. There is no
mention in satellite literature of a murder having been committed through the
agency of a satellite, but the very possibility should make the world take
note.



there is yet another macabre power possessed by some satellites: manipulating a
person’s mind with an audio subliminal “message” (a sound too low for the ear
to consciously detect but which affects the unconscious). In trying thereby to
get a person to do what you want him to do, it does not matter if the target is
asleep or awake. A message could be used to compel a person to say something
you would like him to say, in a manner so spontaneous that noone would be able
to realize the words were contrived by someone else; there is no limit to the
range of ideas an unsuspecting person can be made to voice. The human target
might be compelled to use an obscenity, or persons around the target might be
compelled to say things that insult the target. A sleeping person, on the other
hand, is more vulnerable and can be made to do something, rather than merely
say something. An action compelled by an audio subliminal message could be to
roll off the bed and fall onto the floor, or to get up and walk around in a
trance. However, the sleeping person can only be made to engage in such an
action for only a minute or so, it seems, since he usually wakes up by then and
the “spell” wears. It should be noted here that although the “hypnotism” of a
psychoanalyst is bogus, unconscious or subconscious manipulation of behavior is
genuine. But the brevity of a subliminal spell effected by a satellite might be
overcome by more research. “The psychiatric community,” reported Newsweek in
1994, “generally agrees that subliminal perception exists; a smaller fringe
group believes it can be used to change the psyche.” A Russian doctor, Igor
Smirnov, whom the magazine labeled a “subliminal Dr. Strangelove,” is one
scientist studying the possibilities: “Using electroencephalographs, he
measures brain waves, then uses computers to create a map of the subconscious
and various human impulses, such as anger or the sex drive. Then. through taped
subliminal messages, he claims to physically alter that landscape with the
power of suggestion.” Combining this research with satellite technology–which
has already been done in part–could give its masters the possibility for the
perfect crime, since satellites operate with perfect discretion, perfect
concealment. All these satellite powers can be abused with impunity. A
satellite makes a “clean getaway,” as it were. Even if a given victim became
aware of how a crime was effected, noone would believe him, and he would be powerless
to defend himself or fight back.



And this indeed is the overriding evil of satellite technology. It is not just
that the technology is unrestrained by public agencies; it is not just that it
is entirely undemocratic. The menace of surveillance satellites is
irresistible; it overwhelms its powerless victims. As writer Sandra Hochman
foresaw near the beginning of the satellite age, though seriously
underestimating the sophistication of the technology involved: Omniscient and
discrete, satellites peer down at us from their lofty orbit and keep watch
every moment of our lives… From more than five-hundred miles above earth, a
satellite can sight a tennis ball, photograph it, and send back to earth an
image as clear as if it had been taken on the court at ground zero. Satellites
photograph and record many things…and beam this information, this data, back
to quiet places where it is used in ways we don’t know. Privacy has died.” This
terror is in the here and now. It is not located in the mind of an eccentric
scientist or futurologist. Satellite surveillance is currently being abused.
Thousands of Americans are under satellite surveillance and have been stripped
of their privacy. And presently they would have little or no recourse in their
struggle against the iniquity, since technology advances well ahead of social
institutions.



The powers of satellites, as here described, especially lend themselves to
harassment of someone. The victim could be a business or political rival, an
ex-spouse, a political dissident, a disliked competitor, or anyone who for
whatever reason provokes hatred or contempt. Once the target is a “signature,”
he can almost never escape a satellite’s probing eyes. (As an article in
Science explained, “tiny computers…check the incoming signals with
computerized images, or ‘signatures,’ of what the target should like.”) As long
as his tormentor or tormentors–those with the resources to hire a
satellite–desire, the victim will be subject to continuous scrutiny. His
movements will be known, his conversations heard, his thoughts picked clean,
and his whole life subjected to bogus moralizing, should his tormentor
diabolically use the information gained. A sadist could harass his target with
sound bites, or audio messages, directly broadcast into his room; with physical
assault with a laser; with subliminal audio messages that disturb his sleep or
manipulate persons around him into saying something that emotionally distresses
him; with lasers that turn off street lights as he approaches them; with
tampering with lamps so that they burn out when he hits the switch; and in
general with the knowledge gained acquired through the omniscient eyes and ears
of satellites. In short, a person with access to satellite technology could
make his victim’s life a living nightmare, a living hell.



How you could arrange to have someone subjected to satellite surveillance is
secretive; it might even be a conspiracy. However, there seem to be two basic
possibilities: surveillance by a government satellite or surveillance by a
commercial satellite. According to an article in Time magazine from 1997,
“commercial satellites are coming online that are eagle-eyed enough to spot
you–and maybe a companion–in a hot tub.” The Journal of Defense &
Diplomacy stated in 1985 that “the cost of remote sensors is within the reach
of [any country] with an interest, and high-performance remote sensors (or the
sensor products) are readily available. Advances in fourth-generation (and soon
fifth-generation) computer capabilities. especially in terms of VHSIC
(very-high-speed integrated circuits) and parallel processing, hold the key to
rapid exploitation of space-derived data. Wideband, low-power data relay
satellites are, at the same time, providing support for communication needs and
for relay of remote sensor data, thus providing world-wide sensor coverage.” In
addition, The New York Times reported in 1997 that “commercial spy satellites
are about to let anyone with a credit card peer down from the heavens into the
compounds of dictators or the back yards of neighbors with high fences.” “To
date [the newspaper further noted] the Commerce Department has issued licenses
to nine American companies, some with foreign partners, for 11 different
classes of satellites, which have a range of reconnaissance powers.” But this
last article discussed photographic reconnaissance, in which satellites took
pictures of various sites on earth and ejected a capsule containing film to be
recovered and processed, whereas the state of the art in satellite technology
is imaging, detection of targets on earth in real time. Currently, industry is
hard at work miniaturizing surveillance satellites in order to save money and
be in a position to fill the heavens with more satellites.



Yet no source of information on satellites indicate whether the abuse of
satellite surveillance is mediated by the government or corporations or both.
More telling is the following disclosure by the author of Satellite
Surveillance (1991): “Release of information about spy satellites would reveal
that they have been used against U.S. citizens. While most of the public
supports their use against the enemies of the U.S., most voters would probably
change their attitudes towards reconnaissance satellites if they knew how
extensive the spying has been. It’s better…that this explosive issue never
surfaces.” Few people are aware of the destruction of the rights of some
Americans through satellite surveillance, and fewer still have any inclination
to oppose it, but unless we do, 1984 looms ever closer. “With the development
of television and the technical device to receive and transmit on the same
instrument, private life came to an end.”



John Flemming

USA

Especially for PRAVDA.Ru


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