Sunday, June 9, 2013

Winter Is Coming For Edward Snowden

The latest NSA leak from the Guardian is the identity of the person behind the leak themselves:  Edward Snowden, a 29-year old contractor who has come forth with some absolutely unbelievable claims.

The individual responsible for one of the most significant leaks in US political history is Edward Snowden, a 29-year-old former technical assistant for the CIA and current employee of the defence contractor Booz Allen Hamilton. Snowden has been working at the National Security Agency for the last four years as an employee of various outside contractors, including Booz Allen and Dell.

The Guardian, after several days of interviews, is revealing his identity at his request. From the moment he decided to disclose numerous top-secret documents to the public, he was determined not to opt for the protection of anonymity. "I have no intention of hiding who I am because I know I have done nothing wrong," he said.

And yet Snowden is apparently hiding out in Hong Kong, China and fully expects the CIA to bag him at any time.  The Guardian's Q and A with him is just something else.

Q: Why did you decide to become a whistleblower?

A: "The NSA has built an infrastructure that allows it to intercept almost everything. With this capability, the vast majority of human communications are automatically ingested without targeting. If I wanted to see your emails or your wife's phone, all I have to do is use intercepts. I can get your emails, passwords, phone records, credit cards.
"I don't want to live in a society that does these sort of things … I do not want to live in a world where everything I do and say is recorded. That is not something I am willing to support or live under."

Q: But isn't there a need for surveillance to try to reduce the chances of terrorist attacks such as Boston?

A: "We have to decide why terrorism is a new threat. There has always been terrorism. Boston was a criminal act. It was not about surveillance but good, old-fashioned police work. The police are very good at what they do."

Q: Do you see yourself as another Bradley Manning?

A: "Manning was a classic whistleblower. He was inspired by the public good."

No, Manning was a leaker.  That's why he's on trial right now.  And this is a guy with a political axe to grind who fled to CHINA.

Q: Do you think what you have done is a crime? 

A: "We have seen enough criminality on the part of government. It is hypocritical to make this allegation against me. They have narrowed the public sphere of influence."

He's fled to Hong Kong and he doesn't think he's committed any crimes because the Obama administration is criminal.  I'm not liable to take anything said by anyone who believes that seriously.

But here's the kicker:

Q: Is it possible to put security in place to protect against state surveillance?

A: "You are not even aware of what is possible. The extent of their capabilities is horrifying. We can plant bugs in machines. Once you go on the network, I can identify your machine. You will never be safe whatever protections you put in place."

YOU ARE NOT SAFE.  FEAR FEAR FEAR, says the guy who is sick of the perpetual fear state.  This guy is Greenwald with a security clearance.

Q: When did you decide to leak the documents?

A: "You see things that may be disturbing. When you see everything you realise that some of these things are abusive. The awareness of wrong-doing builds up. There was not one morning when I woke up [and decided this is it]. It was a natural process.

"A lot of people in 2008 voted for Obama. I did not vote for him. I voted for a third party. But I believed in Obama's promises. I was going to disclose it [but waited because of his election]. He continued with the policies of his predecessor."

And there it is.  Obama is just like Bush, so he had to do it.  Good night, folks.


Maxwell Smarter said...

Your hatred for heroes like Glenn Greenwald and Edward Snowden continue to make you look like a fool. You would have cheered this leak in 2008. Good luck with your national police state...and you, being a person of color, should be the most terrified of your own government. You should be the first among millions of PoCs to stand with Greenwald and Snowden and throw off the shackles of the government that is committing genocide against you.

But you can't even see the chains. I pity you.

Zandar said...

Oh hell no, you just didn't come up in here and tell me I should back these two because my government is committing genocide against people of color. I hear that nonsense all the damn time, it was bullshit then, it's bullshit now. Peddle that "minority Democratic voters are on the plantation" bullshit elsewhere, you racist jackass.

drsquid said...

Edward Snowden should most likely be afraid for his life from Booz Allen security goons. He just likely cost them billions, the dumbshit.

Zandar said...

And he flees to CHINA of all places, and thinks this makes him safe from the NSA and CIA. Good luck with that one.

Joyce M said...

The government can just buy ATT, Comcast, Facebook and Google, where subscribers are more than happy to give all their personal information including friendships, personal thoughts, personal communications, shopping decisions and online searches. I called to activate a new credit card and the operator asked about people and places from 25 years ago in order to verify my identity.

RepubAnon said...

Safer than most other places - the Chinese will get some valuable propaganda mileage from him, along the lines of: "See, the US does the same things that they criticize us for."

No way will China extradite him - he'll be far too valuable as a "both sides do it" speaker.

On a side note - the new tactic in terror is to insert bombs into body cavities. (Attacker in Afghanistan Hid Bomb in His Body Source: New York Times, June 8, 2013). As privacy is such an outmoded concept, shall we begin submitting to full-on X-Rays and/or body cavity searches before boarding? Or would that only be outrageous if a Republican suggested it?

Maxwell Smarter said...

Immediately plays the race card. Anyone who disagrees with Obama is a racist, folks. All I see on the comments here this week is disagreement with Obama. Do the rest of you feel like racists too?

You've gone downhill so fast when faced with evidence Obama is no better than Bush on the national security state. The disappointment has clearly gotten to you.

Maybe you should take a long break from blogging. You don't have that many readers left anyway. Certainly not after calling them racist...

Will you apologize?

Kitty Smith said...

ICP, is that you?

Bon The Geek said...

Save your pity, Zandar doesn't deserve it. I mean, he doesn't even have a blog with lots of followers, and outlets on Balloon Juice and TWiB. He's just a loudmouth ass who has to resort to vague statements and name calling because he doesn't have facts to stand with.

Oh, wait... that's actually you. Huh! How 'bout that. Guess maybe until you can figure out something intelligent to say, you can sit in the corner and sip a warm cup of pay attention, fool.

NB said...

"Both sides do it" is true up to a certain point only.

US: surveillance

CN: surveillance + censorship

The last is about much more than who talks to whom, it's about reacting electronically and immediately to messaging displeasing to the government, rather than eventually getting warrants and targeting the individual.

NB said...


Actually, despite your attempts at using hyperbole to discredit him, he's right. Google for FinFisher, for example — spyware used by several governments, placed on victims' computers to spy on suspected criminals and activists alike.

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