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US buys up all satellite war images

Anonymous Comrade writes: "In today's Manchester Guardian Duncan Campbell, security specialist and author of the dossier on Echelon for the Europen Parliament, reports that the Pentagon has spent millions of dollars in an exclusive contract with satellite operators Space Imaging. The purpose of the contract is to give the US government exclusive control over satellite photographs produced of the attacks on Afghanistan. Space Imaging's images are of sufficient resolution to allow one to see bodies on the ground after attacks.

There is speculation that the deal was done commercially rather than by using state muscle so as to preclude the possibility of first amendment challenge by news organisations.

Apparently, the decision to close the contract was made after last thursday's disastrous strikes in Jalalabad which killed numerous civilians.

Other than towards attaining its censorious aims the US military and government has no need for the images available from Space Imaging, seeing as they already have four satellites capable of taking pictures at an even higher resolution.The only other source for comparable iamges seems to be the Russian Cosmos system who are not at present offering the service commercially."