tv Real Money With Ali Velshi Al Jazeera April 12, 2015 8:00am-8:31am EDT
governments, we have to ask many questions. the people that are thinking of giving her money, they need to be responsible. there has been too much deceptions and lies. [ ♪♪ ] ♪♪ ] the united states spends tens of billions of tax payer money to root out terrorism. today we look at whether america's fight against terrorism works as it is supposed to. i'm david shuster in for ali velshi, our report - a smarter war on terror begins right now.
america's domestic war on terror is back in the spotlight. debate about its successes and failures continue. more than a week ago police in new york arrested two women on charges in relation to a bomb. the women were inspired by a designated terrorist group that the united states targeted in yemen. both were targeted by an undercover investigation into home-grown terrorist plots, in philadelphia a woman was arrested on charges that she tried to join i.s.i.l. another group, that america is targetting in iraq. details in both cases are unfolding, they involved joint operations conducted by the federal bureau of investigation and local police. in some circles the joint task force comes under intense criticism. since 9/11 40% of the budget
has been allocated to counterterrorism organizations. the number of confidential plots have risen to 15,000. it's been said that it creates and has phoney terrorist plots so the federal bureau of investigation can justify spending billions every year on counterterrorism. those efforts have achieved some successes, but the question is at what cost? >> reporter: when it comes to funding effort to root out terrorism the united states is virtually unmatched. america's intelligence community spend $66.6 billion on counterterrorism efforts in 2013 - domestic and around the world. that's according to figures
revealed by "the washington post", and documents provided by edward snowden. the federal bureau of investigation spends roughly $4 billion a year on counterterrorism. since the september 11th attacks. the u.s. spent more than half a trillion. it disrupted extremists beyond requirements. there has been a string of successes in 2002. arrested and later convicted after returning from pack stance a plan for a -- pakistan with a plan for a dirty bomb attack. in 2004 there were arrests for planning to bomb a subway in new york. if in 2010, from saudi intelligence splinter bombs were avoided being loaded on to cargo bound for the u.s. it only takes one to change the
matter. a nigerian man tried to dettonate plastic explosions in his under ware aboard a flight bound for detroit, and in 2010 street vendors discovered an s.u.v. rigged to explode in new york times square something that authorities were not aware of through informants. in 2013 an attack got through. three prosecutor killed, 264 others were injured when two pressure cooker bombs ripped through the boston marathon. the two men responsible had been flagged by the federal bureau of investigation two years prior, which underscored a need for tighter screening. >> there'll be a larger presence of uniformed police officers and they are doubling the size. >> when does it go too far. in 2011 the associated press, using freedom of information found the u.s. arrested and
convicted more than 25 people on terror-related cases since 9/11 that's more than eight in the decade and at times undercover agents appeared to blur the line between sting operations and entrapment. human rights watch went so far as to skibbe the stings as: the report says they are at times: the question then becomes protection and the illusion of protection when prosecutorial related cases. it's a fine balance that policy makers can't afford to get wrong the u.s. programme co-director at human rights watch, in a conversation we had earlier this week it was said that better cooperation between communities and law enforce.
gets people to volunteer information uncovering suspicious activities in their neighbourhood. confidential informants said it feeds communities they target. >> we shouldn't rule out confidential informants the question of how you use them. how you control the informants one of the problems that we documented was that confidential inform ants with criminal records were being allowed to identify individuals in communities and tart people who were vulnerable. >> you are talking about racial profiling. in some cases the use of confidential informants worked. >> we are not arguing with the use of confidential informants never works, we are saying when you use them you have to be careful how to use and control
them. in the cases we documented a confidential inform and going into the communities, finding people who were particularly vulnerable to manipulation people indodgent and who they offered money to or people mentally ill, that wouldn't participate in terror plots, much less dream them up what are the alternative members you suggest. >> they know how to conduct investigations without engaging in surveillance of the communities, and without putting informants in there when there's no suspicion of wrongdoing. what we are saying is that there are occasions when it is appropriate to use infarm ants and you can monitor them carefully. the problems that we identified and the number of cases involved informants who basically found easy targets that they could turn into terrorist, who would
never have been likely involved in the activities in the first place. that's the thing you want to avoid. you've been trying to protect crimes but you don't want to manufacture them. when it comes to manufacturing or trying to make sure confidential informants are not misused, is that not up to a judge and jury to decide. confidential informants are used every day in drug investigations and white collar frauds and it's up to the defense attorneys to say this should not count as evidence. >> there's a problem in the u.s. which is in other countries you'd have a defense, but you would never have engaged in the conduct at issue if it weren't for the federal bureau of investigation or whatever to lure you and pushing you in that direction. in the u.s. there is an additional hurdle that has to be met, is that courts will say if you are predisposed to commit
the crimes you can't make an entrapment defense. given the stigma attaching to the prosecution, it's difficult to not be predisposed to committing a crime, even if you were mentally ill. >> that's up to a jury to decide. >> it's virtually impossible to win the defense in a terrorism case. >> is part of the argument that this is money wasted that the federal bureau of investigation and law enforcement is spending much other than funnelling it into confidential informants is it money well spent. >> the fbi has built relations with communities and conducted good investigations. and what we are saying is emphasise that work and avoid the bad cases that we documented. >> there are several cases with confidential informants are
successful. obviously you don't want to i'll yebate a -- alienate a community, muslim or otherwise, and at the same time making sure people have an incentive leading to law enforcement and rest. >> it's about making sure that you use them in an effective and well controlled way, so that they are not crossing the line into creating plots out of thin air. >> federal bureau of investigation - are they using them in a smart way? >> in a number of cases they crossed the line. in the newberg forward, documented in new york. a confidential informant with a criminal record and a number of convictions for fraud went into a community where there was reason to believe that anything was wrong. he fed two people what were endo gent suffering from mental health problems...
>> i want to stop you there. the newberg four lost on appeal. they appealed their conviction and they lost. >> just because these cases don't - just because people are convicted doesn't mean that there haven't been problems in the investigation phase. there has been serious problems. >> but they are worked out by the court, not the fbi or investigators, but by the judge who interprets the law trying to make a fair determination. >> in the new case the judge complained vocally about the fact that this was a case where they had turned a buf on who, you know was absolutely ridiculous into a terrorist. >> but it was a buf on who would blow up times square who would have been able to do it had it not been for his buffoonery. it happened that he didn't set
off his bomb properly or thankfully dapt go off. a -- didn't go off. >> the problem is when the fbi put the weapon the idea and the plot into the vulnerable person and it could be outside of the american muslim group. do you want the federal bureau of investigation to operate in that way? >> if the people are vulnerable to the fbi, are they not vulnerable to terrorist organizations or i.s.i.l. doing the same thing. >> wouldn't that be true for so mentally ill people will they lock up everyone who is mentally ill. it's not an effect which way to effect policy a big threat to cyber terrorism. an attack on the white house by hackers shows how vulnerable we
one of the fastest growing criminal threats to the country is computer hacking. the world's reliance on computer networks enhances the vulnerability of individuals, organizations and governments. not each the white house is immune. security officials insist government networks are secure. but now where used in attacks on government systems - it may have originated from hackers from russia. randall pinkston has the story. >> reporter: the hacking attack originated at the state department forcing computers down. >> we spoke to the fact that there was an event. >> reporter: what was not revealed is that the hackers
worked their way to the white house, penetrating one of two computer systems, a hack system called the executive office network is used for white house advance and press offices and the general council office and to exchange sensitive information about white house activity including the president's private schedule. deputy national security officer ben rose pointed out that the classified network, national security data was not reached. >> we have classified systems that are secure and we take precautions to secure the networks as well. >> reporter: the attack raises questions about how secure the nation's computer infrastructure is. >> there's always vulnerability, that's why we have a classified system. there's less risk on the classified system. on the unclassified system we take actions to prevent vulnerabilities and security. >> reporter: the white house
will not confirm the attack was carried out by russian according to reports it was difficult to detect and the hackers may still be inside the system a former top terror official said the risk of a major cyber terrorist attack is high and america is vulnerable from overseas threats. robert grenier was the director of the central intelligence agencies counterterrorism center between 2004 and 2006 and author of "88 days to candlehar" and asked whether we could handle a cyber attack. >> the answer to that is no. very much matters which system you talk about. there's highly classified systems that ben rhodes pointed out that are secure and concerns the u.s. military. there's much we rely on as an
economy and society that is highly vulnerable to attacks. >> one of the lessons, from classified systems can we not apply them to all systems. >> people focus on the technology and the equipment. we can upgrade those things. the problem is human discipline. i know from dealing with officials in the u.s. they have secure systems, but they have to use them and use them properly. that's the problem and affects us in so many aspects of not only government but the private sector, that people are busy focused on the threat want to get business done and often don't take advantage of the protections that are built in to those systems. >> what about the art that the united states served well in terms of protection of computer systems and data and if it
doesn't want to invest time and money putting up similar protections that is their loss and if they are hacked so be it. >> that's true. i used to be involved in the security industry and the private sector does not want to invest money in prevention particularly when the losses that they make or may not suffer are not immediately visible. it's a huge problem. at the end of the day there are many industries in this country which, if they are - if they are shut down if they are compromised will have ripple effect elsewhere. it's not just a matter of okay fine if they are hacked or otherwise disabled that okay that's their problem, they failed to take the proper pr cautions. we could suffer greatly depending on the industry
especially when we talk about critical infrastructure. many could pay the price for the private sector individuals failing to make the proper investments, and having failed to show proper attention. >> such as electricity grids and gas lines controlled by private companies. you mentioned the threats that infrastructure faces. one is internal threats. someone working inside the companies or the government is able to essentially put in the virus. how vulnerable are we do that threat? >> tremendously vulnerable. i spent a lot of years in the espionage business and the greatest threat is the insider threat. for a host of reasons to include cultural reasons it's not something for us to focus on. we like to trust the people.
i can tell you with the high tech systems and the means of access from the systems, it's people inside these organizations who compose the greatest threat to their security next - protection versus privacy, can americans have both on the war on terror. we examine that question when we come back. >> part of al jazeera america's >> special month long evironmental focus fragile planet
>> the peninsula, in arabic, is aljazeera. our logo represents courage. fiercely independent quality reporting. >> to take as much aid as possible... >> and standing up for the voiceless. when you see this symbol respected around the world it means you too can now count on all the things we stand for. aljazeera america. [ ♪♪ ] we are taking a critical look at america's war on terror just how to deal with terrorism
threats - wh on the american home front or overseas has been hotly debated since 9/11 in 2001. the c.i.a. has been criticized for enhanced interaction techniques - torture to some and rendition, kidnapping to others. domestic agency suggests like the fbi and n.s.a. came under criticism for confidential employments, undercover stings and spying moern communications. the public demands a robust response but pushes back when it invades privacy. something na former leader of c.i.a. james woolsey says does not make sense. he says the fight against terrorism needs to get tougher. >> n.s.a. is a valuable collector of intelligence. you don't defeat people taking
off other people's heads, crucifying them and forming mass movements, without penetrating them by spies, electronics or otherwise. and finding out what they are planning to do. you can't kill them with growns. you have to capture and interrogate them. >> what about the surveillance in the united states. >> i don't think there was anything going on. i know of people who have complained and want to change the law. as far as oversight from the congress and particularly tribunal that reviews the request by n.s.a. to look into something where there's probable cause, i don't think the u.s. government is breaking the law. i don't think it is breaking the law respect to the material na edward snowden stole and issuingulated. >> you co-authored a book in
2010, called "sharia - a threat to america" the west coast"the washington post" says: do you believe that? >> sometimes. i think sometimes that's the case. sometimes it is the moderate muslims and radical ones and the united states. it's necessary to deal with those breaking the law, and deal with them legally. >> you wouldn't agree most mosques have been radicalized in the united states. >> i think most is strong. there are a few that have been. >> okay fair enough. >> you sound like you moderated your position since the start of the iraq war, where you suggested after 9/11 that iraq had something to do with it and we needed to be forceful going
into iraq. have you had a change of mind. >> no we showed that by going in and by the success that we had in the surge, that we could have taken saddam out and helped to bring a lot more order and democracy to the country than we did. we fault the wrong strategy we ignored people who are counterinsurgency, and thought in some ways the way we fought in vietnam which was a bad idea then. in terms of the justification of the war in iraq we admit it was a mistake to suggest that you and others had something to do with 9/11. >> i don't know that that is untrue. there was a lot of cooperation, i think, with russians with international leftist
organizations of one time or another. and i'm not willing to say that there was no participation at all in the planning. >> but you are the only person at your level that the government level is willing to suggest that. everyone else with the exception of dick cheney but he backed away from the idea that iraq had anything to do with it. >> anything is a big word. if you say a country is not principally responsible, i'd go along with that. if you said it had nothing to do i disagree. >> can we say iraq and the vacuum of power had a lot to do with the creation of i.s.i.l. which didn't exist. >> fanatic belief on the sunni and shia side of islam are not a new thing. one way or the other i.s.i.l.-like entities and shi'ites on the other side have fought the war for 1300, 1400
years. so i think one puts altogether too much emphasis on contemporary undertakings by saying that i.s.i.s. was begun by the united states a contemporary undertaking, you look at hussain, he may have been an obviously person but if kept the sunnis and shia in check. >> he kept the sunnis in check by killing them. it's not the way to look at problems in the world, saying as long as things are quiet, and they are quite through mass murder that's okay. >> it's not okay that more are slaut ared now. >> -- slaughtered now. >> i don't think that is principally the result of the action or activity it's something going on as i said for hundreds and hundreds
of years. that is our show. i'm david shuster in for ali velshi. on behalf of the entire team - thanks for watching. >> many teachers are paid 100 to $200 a month like this teacher in west java. they say more money has been made available for salaries but teachers need to improve their qualities, too. the future of 50 million indonesia school children are in their hands. al jazeera, west java. >> don't forget as always you can fi