National Applications Office Closes before it Opens
The controversial Bush administration spy satellite program, the National Applications Office, planned to be part of the Department of Homeland Security is being shut down. Some lawmakers feared it would lead to domestic spying. Local public safety officials said they had more pressing concerns and would have found the program hard to implement. The programs launch was delayed on legal grounds for about two years.
Per the Wall Street Journal:
The program would have provided federal, state and local officials with extensive access to spy-satellite imagery — but no eavesdropping capabilities— to assist with emergency response and other domestic-security needs, such as identifying where ports or border areas are vulnerable to terrorism.
The decision comes as Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano’s aims to refocus the department’s intelligence on ensuring that state and local officials get the threat information they need, according to unnamed officials.