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Originally posted by revs0lution
Notice what my first hop is ? I did a lookup on 188.8.131.52 and turns out it belongs to DISA, or the Defense Information Systems Agency.
Here are a few programs under DISA. (SIPRNET, NIPRNET, RACE, Forge.mil). It's worth noting that SIPRNET, which stands for Secret Internet Protocol Router Network, is supposed to be one of their top secret network. In fact, this is the network that Bradley Manning got all is information from.
DISA is not an intelligence agency and does not collect communications intelligence. When the US government wants internet traffic, they tell the NSA to collect it, and NSA gets it directly from black chambers in major service providers. They don't appear on a traceroute because they're tapping the signal, not acting as an intermediate. When the NSA wants to know what you're doing, you won't know about it.
SIPRNET isn't top secret. It only goes to secret.
Parts of that 7.*.*.* are non-routed (note not non-routable!) DoD keep them reserved behind their firewalls, so they aren't really in the "publicly addressable" IP address space. You can't get a routing to DoD machines in that address space. Rumour has it that Rogers ran out of non-routable IP address space! (Rogers, unlike the American ISPs) run a unified network rather than a geographically segregated network which means that each non-routable IP address is unique in its entire geography, so they can run out! Rumour also has it that they went to IANA and DoD and got permission to use the non-routed parts of the 7.* address space if it's not routed out of Rogers networks. Sketchy but until IP V6 comes along, all kinds of bandaid solutions are coming along to problems like this.