SECRET CODEWORDS OF THE NSA: VICTORYDANCEwoodblock print (mokuhanga)
6" x 6" (152.4 x 152.4 mm)
7 layers of color plus blind emboss on Kochi Kozo paper
According to Glenn Greenwald's blog The Intercept, the NSA has played an increasingly central role in drone killings over the past five years, and the Obama administration has increasingly focused these strikes on Yemen. VICTORYDANCE was a Joint NSA-CIA operation to map the WiFi signals of nearly every major town in Yemen. The information was collected specifically for use in locating targets for drone attacks. Basically, the NSA equips drones with devices which mimic cell phone towers so that a targeted person's cell phone locks into the drone receiver and becomes the drone's real-time guide.
On Dec. 12, 2013 in Radda in southern Yemen, four Hellfire missiles were fired at a wedding procession of 11 vehicles, killing at least 12 people and wounding at least 15 others, one of whom was said to be the bride. U.S. officials say that only members of al-Qaida were killed in the strike.
My victory dancer is modeled on a photograph of a young Yemeni man dancing the bara'a, or dagger dance, which is performed at traditional weddings in Yemen. Only men perform the bara'a dance, and they brandish a dagger called a janbiya. You can watch a short video of the bara'a dance here.