“Tucker Carlson has never been an intelligence target of the Agency and the NSA has never had any plans to try to take his program off the air,” the NSA, which conducts surveillance on foreign targets, said in a statement on Twitter.
“NSA has a foreign intelligence mission. We target foreign powers to generate insights on foreign activities that could harm the United States,” the agency added. “With limited exceptions (e.g. an emergency), NSA may not target a US citizen without a court order that explicitly authorizes the targeting.”
The NSA’s statement comes after Carlson, who hosts “Tucker Carlson Tonight,” one of the most popular shows on cable television, on Monday accused the agency of having monitored his electronic communications and accessed some of his personal emails.
He cited information from a “whistleblower from within the U.S. government,” but has yet to publicly present evidence to back his claims.
Carlson said the “war on terror is now being waged against American citizens,” adding that the purported individual confirmed that his show’s communications are being monitored by the agency.
The whistleblower had “repeated back to us information about a story we are working on that could have only come from my texts and emails,” the Fox commentator alleged.
Responding to the NSA’s statement Tuesday, Carlson on his show called it “infuriatingly dishonest” and “an entire paragraph of lies written purely for the benefit of the intel community’s lackeys at CNN and MSNBC.”
“Last night on this show we made a very straightforward claim: NSA has read my private emails without my permission. Period. Tonight’s [NSA] statement does not deny that,” Carlson said.
“The question remains: Did the Biden administration read my personal emails?” he continued. “That’s the question that we asked directly to NSA officials when we spoke to them about 20 minutes ago in a very heated conversation: Did you read my emails? And again, they refused to say. Again and again. And then, they refused even to explain why they couldn’t answer that simple question.
“‘We can’t tell you and we won’t tell you why we can’t tell you,’” Carlson added. “My emails! And the message was clear: ‘We can do whatever we want. We can read your personal texts, we can read your personal emails, we can send veiled threats your way to brush you back if we don’t like your politics. We can do anything. We’re our own country, and there’s literally nothing you can do about it. We’re in charge, you are not.’ Orwellian does not begin to describe the experience.”