WATCH: Pentagon Caught Launching ‘Surveillance Balloons’ To Track And Spy On Americans In The Midwest
Newly revealed actions by the Pentagon show that Big Brother is, in fact, watching us.
Despite privacy concerns raised by the South Dakota chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union, the Pentagon has chosen to launch solar-powered balloons across six states on Friday. The Pentagon plans to use these balloons as a persistent monitoring system to track narcotics and Homeland Security concerns. According to a filing with the Federal Communications Commission, this is the case. On July 12th, the Federal Communications Commission approved the deployment of these balloons into high altitude. This is a special temporary authorization that is being used as an experiment.
In the states of Iowa, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Illinois, and Missouri, about two dozen balloons will be carrying radars that can track vehicles over a 25-square-mile area beneath them. They will be visible in the sky from July 12th until September 1st. They can travel up to 250 miles from their launch site and reach a maximum altitude of 65,000 feet above land. It’s unclear whether this is merely a test or a real-time probe. Furthermore, it is unknown exactly what information will be recorded, what will happen to the data collected during the event, and who will have custody of the data following the event. Information such as which vehicles are traveling where and when.
The South Dakota chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union is concerned that these surveillance balloons may infringe on people’s privacy. They demanded that the military be forthcoming about its plans in South Dakota. Their worry stems from the fact that this technology is capable of keeping data on public movements across entire cities. This is a form of widespread surveillance. The ACLU of South Dakota’s policy director, Libby Skarin, has some concerns.
Skarin stated, “There are so many unsolved questions here.” “What type of data is being collected?” What kind of data is being saved? What people have access to this data? Is the surveillance for the objectives of law enforcement? Before the federal government forces South Dakotans to area-wide surveillance, local communities should be consulted and given their agreement.”
“Technology like this has the potential to turn South Dakota into a surveillance state, infringing on every South Dakotan’s privacy.” “We’re not talking about closed-circuit television cameras or hidden cameras,” Skarin clarified. “This is an area-wide monitoring system that effectively provides a pervasive checkpoint throughout whole cities and metropolitan areas.”
This technology was originally developed for battlefields in Iraq and Afghanistan in order to find improvised explosive devices. One has to wonder what use it has legitimately for civilians. The Supreme Court has ruled in favor of privacy in the past multiple times when the latest technologies have been used in violation of privacy for Americans. The most recent case was in 2018 wherein the court ruled it violated the 4th amendment to access historical records in a cell phone without a search warrant. The court at that time said that there is a difference between being observed by law enforcement and being observed by technology.