In 2005, the Bush administration pressured Google Inc. to help the National Intelligence Agencies by turning over search results of Google Earth and Google Maps, specifically the searches involving classified or sensitive U.S. installation worldwide, as well as views of possible terrorist targets of known interest inside the U.S. culled from interrogations and investigation by U.S. and foreign intelligence organizations. Google flatly refused, slammed the Bush Administration for civil liberties violations and sought court protection.
All of which makes this story just that much more weird.
From PR Newswire:
Citing new information about Google's classified government contracts and the Internet giant's admitted Wi-Spying activity, Consumer Watchdog today said it is more imperative than ever for the Energy and Commerce Committee to conduct hearings into possible privacy violations by Google.
"Based on today's Washington Post, it appears that Google holds classified U.S. government contracts to supply search and geospatial information to the U.S. government. In addition, White House records show that Google executives have been holding meetings with U.S. national security officials for undisclosed reasons. Finally, it also appears that Google's widely criticized efforts to collect wireless network data on American citizens were not inadvertent, contrary to the company's claims."
"This raises serious questions about whether Google has engaged in a reckless effort to amass private data without giving any thought to the possible misuse of that information, and whether it can be trusted to safeguard the information it collects from the prying eyes of the U.S. government."
It has also been widely reported that Google has been working in "partnership" with the National Security Agency, the very same government body that illegally intercepted the private communications of millions of Americans during the Bush administration.
The 2006 the Google dudes, Sergey Brin and Larry Page, appeared many times on leftest blogs and on cable news shows claiming they would have no part in Bush's blatant violations of America's Civil liberties. It's also an interesting fact that Brin and Page were both very large contributers to Obama's Presidential campaign in 2008. I guess like some on the left who can praise foreign dictators, turn their heads and ignore voter intimidation, the oppression of women and hypocritical actions of environmentalist, the Google dudes can also justify in their world the secret involvement in activities they publicly abhor, all the while playing footsie with a administration they support.