RE: Posting observations and elements of spysats

From: Robert Oler (
Date: Thu Sep 20 2001 - 19:46:21 EDT

  • Next message: Robert Oler: "RE: Posting observations and elements of spysats"

    Hello Dale.
    I think that your comments are well intended and thoughtful.  having said 
    that (and given your post and all the others much thought) I think that I 
    might rise to disagree with them on a couple of axis.
    Obviously there is I think a duty to not aide and comfort the enemy.  But 
    that responsibility needs to be clearly understood.  I think that what it 
    entails is not to offer information in the public domain that is or should 
    not be available in the public domain and indeed is "classified".  So some 
    examples.  Is it wrong if you live in Norfolk to say "the Big Stick has 
    sailed with her battle group?"  Probably not.  The news media is reporting 
    that pretty heavily (CNN actually had a reporter on the boat) and the 
    information could be gleaned by almost anyone who had a pair of binoculars.  
    Is it wrong to say "I was talking to a officer in the battle group and he 
    said that they had gotten joint tasking orders and here is what they are?"  
    I would say yes.  Although the duty of classification was clearly broken by 
    the officer who betrayed the trust of classification it would strike me that 
    a "loyal" American would turn that information over to Naval Intellegence, 
    the FBI or some other "controlling legal authority" and not to CNN.
    It is between those two "markers" that I think that a citizens duty to 
    classification are defined.  In other words if information is discovered in 
    the public domain by using tools and tactics that are both legal and 
    available to "anyone" then my guess is that there is no duty; either real or 
    patriotic to withold that information.  If for instance NASA was in the 
    business of classified shuttle flights and they were doing an EVA and passed 
    over one of the stations of the Oler Deep Space Network (grin) and we heard 
    the EVA and heard them discuss the payload then I wouldnt have any problem, 
    even in the capacity that I am in with that information being given to the 
    press.  No one violated any laws and the breach was on the part of the folks 
    who should take classification more seriously.
    Hence I dont have any problem with the pub of amateur TLE's for classified 
    payloads for a couple of reason.
    1.  I think the bad guys have them anyway from better sources then this 
    bulliten board.  If Osama wants them (and I imagine he does) then I bet he 
    gets them hot off the press from the North Koreans, the russians, the 
    chinese. or my favorite sources...the Pakistanis or the Iraqis.  The Pakis 
    clearly know them (they disguised their nuclear test well) and I dont think 
    that Osama is as isolated as most claim.
    2.  If he couldnt get them from someone else then it wouldnt take much of an 
    investment to set up a "tracking station" of his own.  This includes both 
    optical and electronic.  It wouldnt take much to set up one of his sleepers 
    somewhere with some pretty "fancy" amateur astronony stuff that could easily 
    do the task...and even in a nation away from Afghanistan.  Electronic means 
    might be a little harder but not much.
    3.  I guess that I think that the biggest tragedy of a couple of days ago 
    was what has happened to the American way of life since the "event".  
    Everyone says its changing.  I'm not one of them.  I liked the American way 
    of life.  I liked freedom from Fear, I liked an open government, I liked the 
    ability to find out things that the government wants to keep secret by using 
    legal and ethical means, I liked the ability of talented amateurs like Ted 
    M. to do things that are "interesting" to the rest of us.
    Why not shut down the GPS system for private operations?  The bad guys 
    doubtless used it to home on the targets.
    I think that the bad guys win everytime we "change" to accomadate them.  
    Everytime we change something we use to do and enjoy because we "fear" what 
    might happen the guys with box cutters win.
    Dont get me wrong.  I dont have any problem with killing OSama or any 
    enemies of The Empire.  AND also I know whats at stake.  I might be going 
    east or worse the future Mrs. Oler might have change her navy blue suit of 
    an airline pilot for the dress blues of a naval aviator real soon and she 
    might be on one of those big gray things that is doubtless headed "EAST".
    But as long as it is possible for someone else to do what is done on this 
    forum legally (ie posting TLE's for spy sats) then I dont have any problem 
    with the people who are doing it legally doing it.
    A person long ago once said that the only thing we have to fear is fear 
    itself.  Those are great words.  I am now only learning how great.
    Robert Oler WB5MZO Houston TX
    >From: "Dale Ireland" <>
    >To: "Ted Molczan" <>, <>
    >Subject: RE: Posting observations and elements of spysats
    >Date: Wed, 19 Sep 2001 17:39:52 -0700
    >Ted Molczan wrote
    > > unfortunately, there can be no assurance of who is right. It is
    > > my hope that
    > > those on either side can agree to disagree, and leave it to the
    > > conscience of
    > > the individual.
    > >
    > > Ted Molczan
    >You admit that you are not sure if your network of observers helps the 
    >of Bin Laden, you also make many suppositions about the use of the
    >surveillance satellites that you have absolutely no idea about since you 
    >certainly not privy to any of the facts. As Bin laden is more isolated he
    >will rely more on your elements, he doesn't seem to have many allies and he
    >certainly doesn't have a group of guys with watches making satellite
    >observations.. Your elements may already have played a tragic role. Your
    >idea of conscience may endanger us all, that is one screwed up hobby.
    >It boils down to getting self satisfaction from being a rebel and poking a
    >finger in the eye of the Pentagon. Seems to me they have had enough abuse
    >lately. The world has changed, some people just don't get it.
    >Dale Ireland
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